Why I returned my new E-5

Started Oct 19, 2011 | Discussions
JeanPierre Thibaudeau
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Why I returned my new E-5
Oct 19, 2011

I am the proud owner of 7 Olympus DSLR and I love each one of them for different reasons but mainly the colors and the natural rendition of the scenes.

10 days ago, I bought what is now called the best Oly DSLR, namely the E-5. I used it intensely for 7 days before returning it to the store for a full refund.

What I liked about the E-5:

  • very good contruction, not as good as the E-3, but very close

  • well placed buttons, nice ergonimics, very responsive, fast AF

  • very sharp images, maybe even sharper than the E-510 with the noise filter disabled

What I didn't like about the E-5

  • the colors and this is the main reason, they have too much red in them and no matter how I tried to correct it in camera or in PP, I could never get them the way I like, except some exceptions.

  • producing very sharp images have a price to be paid and I'm talking about many tiny artifacts all over the images (at default settings)

  • high ISO images contained that washed out water color effects which I hate from the compact cameras like Fuji, Sony with many MPixels. First time I see that effect in a Oly DSLR (very disappointed).

  • a kind of subtle veil all over the images, probably due to all the filters and new processing in camera, which did not exist in older models.

In the end, in simple words, the images produced by the E-5, although very well detailed, are less pleasing to my eyes than the ones taken with older models.

So I'll keep my old Oly DSLR, I still like them and I'll use them until I see something that produces nicer images than these old gems. It may take a while though.

Thanks for reading, comments are welcome.
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Jean-Pierre

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Oly500Enew
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

Interesting...can you further describe the "subtle veil" you are referring to?
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goblin
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

I have the persistent feeling something was wrong with your E-5.

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cooldragon
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

Will you post some 100% scale images to show the problem so we can share your findings?
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Raist3d
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I can understand
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

I can understand the water color you described at high ISO as noise reduction. But the colors being off/wrong in general? Sounds really odd to me.

Did you try:

  • using the menu to reset the camera to factory defaults

  • remove the battery, wait 2 minutes

  • try taking a shot in daylight and set the white balance by hand to daylight (or cloudy if overcast)?

Some other issues you mentioned I could see but not the color one.

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jkrumm
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

Was this your first 12mp Oly? I found the E5 very similar to my 620 in how it shows color, and it takes a little more getting used compared to the previous generation of cameras, which I thought produced more punchy, straightforward tones.

The excess red I've heard about before. One thing you have to be careful with using the E5 is to not overexpose, and the red channel clips easily from what I've heard. Ctein's column at The Online Photographer today addressees the problems with "expose to the right" and clipping in general...

http://theonlinephotographer.typepad.com/the_online_photographer/blog_index.html

Anyway, sorry you had problems, but perhaps it saved you some serious money.

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PDidd117w3n7y
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Too much red or blue make up your mind!
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1022&message=39569741

In this thread where you were trying to sort out the color problem before your return you said most E-Cameras shifted green yellow this one violet or purple showing us an example of a red jacket with too much blue in it...

So which is it? because now you are saying the colors produced contain too much red!?!?! I think you are looking for a reason not to like it because no one else has talked about the color shift. Did you think to exchange it and make sure your unit wasn't just out of calibration? No instead you come here just to :,-(
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JeanPierre Thibaudeau
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to jkrumm, Oct 19, 2011

I have the E-P! another 12MP and although I am not crazy about it's colors, I did not have this problem.

Yes, I did a hard reset, used auto white balance and had this red cast on most pics, but none as obvious than in this pic of my friend at defaut settings. Green hue is lacking here.

For me, since the E-620, Olympus has lost their "edge" in colors. I also returned the E-620, it was not the Oly colors they had since the E-1, the E-620 was too much in the blue/red area and was hard to fix. It also has way too much noise, even at ISO 200 in daylight.

For the veil thing, I'll have to post another one, although this might be hard to show here.

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Jean-Pierre

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cooldragon
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Re: Too much red or blue make up your mind!
In reply to PDidd117w3n7y, Oct 19, 2011

Too much red in the jacket and a blue or cyan cast on the whole image can coexist in the same image and they are two different issues.
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cooldragon
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

This one looks to me is a faulty camera. A did a few testings, no such obvious color shift issue. Noise is indeed an issue even in low ISO and good light conditions.
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RoelHendrickx
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

I can't really see much wrong with this sample image.
That face seems a bit reddish, but I would call it a normal complexion.
Now of course I don't know the person. If his is usually pale, then yes.

Other than that : I don't see it. At least not on my monitor.
Maybe that is why I have no problem with the colour rendition of my own E-5?

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cooldragon
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to RoelHendrickx, Oct 19, 2011

On the background white and the left hand side black cothes, there are red cast, obivous to me.
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JeanPierre Thibaudeau
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Re: Too much red or blue make up your mind!
In reply to PDidd117w3n7y, Oct 19, 2011

PDidd117w3n7y wrote:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1022&message=39569741

In this thread where you were trying to sort out the color problem before your return you said most E-Cameras shifted green yellow this one violet or purple showing us an example of a red jacket with too much blue in it...

So which is it? because now you are saying the colors produced contain too much red!?!?! I think you are looking for a reason not to like it because no one else has talked about the color shift. Did you think to exchange it and make sure your unit wasn't just out of calibration? No instead you come here just to :,-(
--
Patrick D.

To Patrick,

I am not sure if I understand your message correctly but I'll say it again, I liked Oly colrs because they pushed the green/yellow colors more than the competition and gave a very pleasant look to the images. And since the E-620, they changed their color "recipe" and are now pushing the opposite hue - blue/red - thus giving a look which I'm not used to and do not like. As much as Pentax is pushing the violet (blue-red) and Fuji the green. I think today Sony has the best colors althought it's very slightly pushed towards the blue.
--
Jean-Pierre

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cooldragon
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Is Flash used?
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

I would like to see day light images with too much red, under default camera settings. I did auto tone in PP

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John Mason
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very interesting - tried raw with C1?
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

One of the aspects I like best about my E5 is the colors are normally spot on.

But I only shoot raw and develop most often with C1 using C1's E5 profile.

I use a 30 inch wide gamut monitor that is profiled and I'm quite color picky.

Your sample shot indeed looks red shifted - especially easy to see in the background.

I wonder if your sample was defective - something with the sensor / AA defective.
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RoelHendrickx
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Thanks, cooldragon. WB issue partly?
In reply to cooldragon, Oct 19, 2011

cooldragon wrote:

On the background white and the left hand side black cothes, there are red cast, obivous to me.

OK thanks.
I was looking at the actual subject of the photo, stupid me.

Under these conditions, I wonder what may cause the effect.
Mixed lighting playing a part, I would assume.

White balance can be tricky indoors (although I must say that Oly Auto-WB, especially in E-3 and E-5 is quite sophisticated: I seldom find need to adjust, and when I do, it is often for creative reasons or for uniformity in mixed lighting conditions).
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Chris Mak
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Re: very interesting - tried raw with C1?
In reply to John Mason, Oct 19, 2011

John Mason wrote:

One of the aspects I like best about my E5 is the colors are normally spot on.

But I only shoot raw and develop most often with C1 using C1's E5 profile.

I can attest to that.

Using Raw in Capture one, the E5 produces color detail at a very satisfying level, helped by a new level of detail and very good metering.

As I commented on your previous sample, JeanPierre, from before you returned the camera, this sample looks horrible to my eyes. It's either the in camera settings/Olympus jpegs, or your E5 was faulty.

sorry to hear you didn't find the E5 as satisfying as I did.

Chris

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rovingtim
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to JeanPierre Thibaudeau, Oct 19, 2011

If you shoot RAW it's easy to turn down the red.

Even as someone who recoils in horror at weak AA artifacts, I usually only see them in one place unless I start looking really hard and then perhaps I might see it in several isolated spots. Most see this as either moire, a local colour shift, or they think it is the camera picking up fine detail but I would never characterise it as being all over the image.

The only other artifacts you are going to get in a functioning E5 will be in the jpg files with the noise filter turned on. Or perhaps the sharpening was turned up too high? Or the E5 was broken.

I guess it's too late now, but to me it doesn't sound like you gave the camera a chance.

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Rriley
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Re: Is Flash used?
In reply to cooldragon, Oct 19, 2011

cooldragon wrote:
yes flash was fired
auto WB

i see some hot pixels too

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Riley

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Rriley
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Re: Why I returned my new E-5
In reply to rovingtim, Oct 19, 2011

rovingtim wrote:

If you shoot RAW it's easy to turn down the red.

Even as someone who recoils in horror at weak AA artifacts, I usually only see them in one place unless I start looking really hard and then perhaps I might see it in several isolated spots. Most see this as either moire, a local colour shift, or they think it is the camera picking up fine detail but I would never characterise it as being all over the image.

thats almost funny b/se you talk about it continually

The only other artifacts you are going to get in a functioning E5 will be in the jpg files with the noise filter turned on. Or perhaps the sharpening was turned up too high? Or the E5 was broken.

I guess it's too late now, but to me it doesn't sound like you gave the camera a chance.

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Riley

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