Great little compact but image quality / performance do not deserve the “enthusiast camera” label...

Started Apr 6, 2013 | User reviews thread
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marike6 Senior Member • Posts: 5,071
XZ-10 better than a D70? Are you serious?

sean000 wrote:

Based on the few samples I've seen: The tiny sensor in the XZ-10 takes better ISO 1600 shots than the first ASP-C DSLR I owned (a Nikon D70 in 2004), and is probably miles better than the "high-end" compact P&S cameras from two or three years ago. I certainly wouldn't expect the same level of detail and tonality I get from the E-M5 at high ISO, but I suspect it will be closer to the E-M5 than to an iPhone 4.

The XZ-10 doesn't take better pictures than the D70 at ANY ISO.  Not even close.

You are aware that the D70 on DxOMark had a Sports (Low-Light ISO) score of 529 ISO?  The D70's DxOMark score of 529 ISO only about 300 ISO lower than the EM5, and still over 200 ISO more than the Sony RX100's score of 390 ISO.

DxOMark Sports (Low-Light) ISO Score

D7100           1256 ISO

EM5                829 ISO

D70                529 ISO

Nikon 1 J3       420 ISO

RX100             390 ISO

Olympus XZ-2   216 ISO

Pentax Q10      183 ISO

Canon S110     168 ISO

I've downloaded some XZ-10 RAWs and sadly, I don't think it will even score over 150 ISO.  So I'm not sure how do you think it could possibly be anywhere near an APS-C DSLR like the D70 for high ISO shooting?

You also talk about the XZ-10 being "miles better" than a high end P&Ss from a couple of years ago. We must be looking at different sample images as the XZ-10 doesn't seem to equal the IQ you get with a high end compact from 2 or 3 years ago, i.e., Canon S100, Panasonic LX5, Ricoh GRD III, etc.  So where do you get "miles better"?  Based on what?

As I said, I'd be surprised if the XZ-10 scored over 150 ISO (the Canon G15 and S110, for example, which have larger 1/1.7" sensors than the XZ-10 score around 168 ISO), and based on what I've seen, the XZ-10 is quite a bit noisier than both of those cameras.

Even at ISO 100, the XZ-10 exhibits some noise in areas like the sky (this is one reason I passed on the XZ-10, as I tend to use compacts at ISO 100-400 and 800 in a pinch and I wasn't pleased with what I saw at base ISO from the XZ-10).  In comparison, a camera like the S100 or P330 at ISO 100 will be essentially noise free.  So if the XZ-10 doesn't seem to compete with even other high end compacts,  I'm not sure where you are getting your theory that the XZ-10 can compete with an APS-C DSLR like the D70.  I think you need to go back an look at some D70 samples, because I still have my D70, and I can assure you that it has significantly better IQ than the XZ-10 at any ISO.

Olympus XZ-10 Full-sized samples (these are all ISO 100 so have a look at 100%).

XZ-10 at ISO 1600 (click on image, click on view at 1:1)

And I have a folder of full-sized XZ-10 images, and IQ isn't anywhere near as good as other popular 1/2.3" sensor cameras like the excellent Pentax Q.

So I also wanted to like the XZ-10, but quite honestly I don't know what you are seeing, or where these XZ-10 images are that are better than APS-C DSLRs or high end compacts.  If the XZ-10 had been as good as some other 1/2.3" sensor cameras for IQ like the Canon SX50 or Panasonic FZ200, I would have bought one in a second.  But from what I've seen, it doesn't seem to be, at least not for IQ.

I'm not trying to trash the XZ-10, but I think a bit of a reality check is in order.  I'm not saying the XZ-10 is not a nice camera, just that it's IQ doesn't compete with larger sensor cameras from even a few years ago, and it some cases like with the Pentax Q or the Canon SX50, it doesn't compete with other cameras with the same sensor size.

By the way, I have a folder of full-sized XZ-10 images.  If you are interested in them, I will can put them in my DropBox so you can download them.  They might help you get a better idea of what the XZ-10 can and can't do.

Cheers, and happy shooting, Markus

 marike6's gear list:marike6's gear list
Nikon Coolpix P330 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 Nikon D800 Fujifilm X-E1 Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH +7 more
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