Looking for a P&S compliment to my E-M5, advice please.

Started Apr 8, 2013 | Discussions thread
The Silver Fox
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Re: Looking for a P&S compliment to my E-M5, advice please.
In reply to S. Miller, Apr 9, 2013
XZ-2: IQ - I've heard 400-800 is good, but I tested it with low light shots and it seems like 1600 is useable and if I knew I was converting to B&W, would use 3200 (maybe even printing up to 13x19). Size is a touch big, but not too large, mainly because of the tilt screen which I LOVE on my E-M5. Lens: 1/3 stop slower than the LX-7 at 28-90. I lose the 24/1.4 but gain more tele reach. For my shooting style, I slightly prefer the Oly lens range. Video: Probably okay but worse than the LX-7 and definitely worse than the Sony.

Steve,

You've done a good job in pointing out relative strengths and weaknesses in all four of the compacts you are considering. Any of the four compacts will serve you well, if you know what you're doing and can work within their limitations.

I bought an Olympus XZ-2 five months ago as a backup to a backup, and have been very pleased with it. Your description of its strengths and limitations is spot-on, and your assessment of usable ISO matches my experience. You also pegged the limitations in video: Perfectly acceptable for family videos, but I wouldn't shoot a wedding with it.

However, once you recognize its limitations, the XZ-2 has been a pleasure to shoot with. I was so impressed that I took it as my only camera in December on a two-week outing. My hope was to really learn the camera and put it to the test, because I wouldn't be tempted to pull out the FF camera whenever I thought the XZ-2 wasn't up to the task. What I discovered isn't surprising: The XZ-2 was less than ideal in low-light situations, but the fast lens made it usable, with moderate results, exceeding the capabilities of standard point-and-shoots. In good light, the results were delightful, and in moderate light, 1600 was quite usable.

Oh, it's worth mentioning that while the XZ-2 has a great LCD, I really prefer viewfinders. I bought the Olympus VF-2 viewfinder (a bit pricey, and, of course, it's an EVF, not optical) to use with my XZ-2. I feel it makes the XZ-2 a more capable camera.

The only real negative with my XZ-2 has been the flash when used for fill; it's not bad, but I feel it could have been better. You might have to disengage AWB and manually adjust when using the flash. But let me clear, it's not horrible, just a bit less than I had hoped.

In short, you've assessed the XZ-2 well. I cannot speak to the other compacts you've listed, but can say that the XZ-2 has been worth the (full) purchase price to me. I think you'll be pleased with it as well, if it is the choice you finally make.

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