Thom Hogan: Impact of mFT on Nikon DX line

Started Sep 20, 2013 | Discussions thread
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Re: Missing the mark, somewhat
In reply to TrapperJohn, Sep 21, 2013

Nice summary, Trapper John.

I enjoy landscape and wildlife photography, and for the latter have at times looked at Nikon DSLR's for their excellent AF systems, PDAF tracking abilities, superior DR and greater cropping ability (24MP sensor).

But I ultimately come back to mFT. The D5200 has a miserably small OVF and is crippled in various ways, while the D7100 is, by mFT standards, large and heavy. And while the D5200/D7100 24MP sensor has better DR and detail, is it enough for me to really notice? After comparing sample images, I've decided not.

And, yes, I'd simply love the D5200/D7100's tracking ability along with the performance of their faster long lenses for BIF (birds in flight). But the E-M1 now shows mFT is at least on the trail of decent tracking ability, and those fast/long Nikon lenses cost a fortune and weigh a ton.

The ultimate decider? The size to performance ratio. Cameras like the E-M5, E-M1 and GX7 have closed the gap in all aspects of performance to APS-C DSLR's while providing take-anywhere bodies with excellent build yet weighing only about a pound. Add in my ability to take a nice selection of excellent lenses in my pockets when out on my photo jaunts, and I just can't go back.

Olympus and Panasonic have also quietly built a very nice combined system of lenses, which they continue to build on, the latest being the 12-40mm f2.8 zoom. This has become their trump card for me when comparing systems, along with knowing they're committed to continuing to grow the selection.

With the E-M1, Olympus has leapfrogged the already excellent E-M5 in many ways: much improved AF tracking ability, fast AF of HG/SHG lenses (effectively greatly expanding their lens line-up), a built-in class leading EVF, 1-step better IBIS, 1/8000 sec shutter, auto CA correction, focus peaking, Wi-Fi, more buttons to minimize menu diving and improved handling.

Where else do you see this amount of energy in innovation in both bodies and lenses? With Olympus and Panasonic continuing to push each other forward in camera design/performance and expanding their shared lens system, I don't see this energy abating anytime soon.

What I feel is needed now is a D5200/700D priced body with many of the E-M1's capabilities in a small non-weathersealed body combined with a genuine advertising campaign. With the success of the E-M5, DPR's 2012 camera of the year reader's choice poll winner, the words already clearly out.

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Sailin' Steve

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