Engadget reviews EM5: " a blurry mess "

Started May 6, 2012 | Discussions
Davidgilmour
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Engadget reviews EM5: " a blurry mess "
May 6, 2012

" Take it to the ski slopes, for example, and the E-M5 will clam up, only occasionally capturing a sharp frame. We experienced the same during a rainy day beach shoot with that 12-50mm kit optic zoomed all the way in. When the camera works, it's peerless, but you won't have to wait long before stumbling on a scene it can't master. The same is true of video capture: you'll want to steer clear of continuous autofocus while shooting in snow, rain or any dark or flat scene, lest you end up with a blurry mess "

Wasn't this camera supposed to be an AF miracle?

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papillon_65
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Re: Engadget reviews EM5: " a blurry mess "
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

Davidgilmour wrote:

" Take it to the ski slopes, for example, and the E-M5 will clam up, only occasionally capturing a sharp frame. We experienced the same during a rainy day beach shoot with that 12-50mm kit optic zoomed all the way in. When the camera works, it's peerless, but you won't have to wait long before stumbling on a scene it can't master. The same is true of video capture: you'll want to steer clear of continuous autofocus while shooting in snow, rain or any dark or flat scene, lest you end up with a blurry mess "

Wasn't this camera supposed to be an AF miracle?

That's the problem when you get review sites who don't know how to set a camera up properly. Olympus cameras never give their best when shot straight out of the box or if the user doesn't understand how CDAF focusing works and when it can be fooled. You can make any camera look and perform badly if you are incompetent.
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bab4
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Re: Engadget reviews EM5: " a blurry mess "
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

Didn't you just post this on the Fuji forums only to have your troll thread deleted? I already told you there that all contrast based AF cameras will have problems with low contrast subjects.

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Corkcampbell
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I read that review and thought it quite positive. (nt)
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

no text

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Bilgy_no1
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Re: Interesting
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

Davidgilmour wrote:

" Take it to the ski slopes, for example, and the E-M5 will clam up, only occasionally capturing a sharp frame. We experienced the same during a rainy day beach shoot with that 12-50mm kit optic zoomed all the way in. When the camera works, it's peerless, but you won't have to wait long before stumbling on a scene it can't master. The same is true of video capture: you'll want to steer clear of continuous autofocus while shooting in snow, rain or any dark or flat scene, lest you end up with a blurry mess "

Wasn't this camera supposed to be an AF miracle?

This is the first report I see of problematic AF, so who knows? Maybe it's just user error, a faulty unit, or whatever. But it is true that in low contrast areas, CDAF has a tough job.

There is also plenty of reports around of the AF working correctly and swiftly, even down to very low light. It would be interesting to hear user reports on this.
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Louis_Dobson
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Re: Interesting
In reply to Bilgy_no1, May 6, 2012

It's very good but you can fool it. I've already moaned about that.

Bilgy_no1 wrote:

Davidgilmour wrote:

" Take it to the ski slopes, for example, and the E-M5 will clam up, only occasionally capturing a sharp frame. We experienced the same during a rainy day beach shoot with that 12-50mm kit optic zoomed all the way in. When the camera works, it's peerless, but you won't have to wait long before stumbling on a scene it can't master. The same is true of video capture: you'll want to steer clear of continuous autofocus while shooting in snow, rain or any dark or flat scene, lest you end up with a blurry mess "

Wasn't this camera supposed to be an AF miracle?

This is the first report I see of problematic AF, so who knows? Maybe it's just user error, a faulty unit, or whatever. But it is true that in low contrast areas, CDAF has a tough job.

There is also plenty of reports around of the AF working correctly and swiftly, even down to very low light. It would be interesting to hear user reports on this.
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Henry Richardson
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Here is the review link
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012
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kermitG9
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To be honest: AF accuracy has decreased on 4/3 lenses
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

Wasn't this camera supposed to be an AF miracle?

Miracle ? Where did you read that ??

CDAF has got problems with low contrast scenes.. and that will always be the case with any CDAF camera/lens (regardless of the brand). That's particularly true if they performed tests on a ski slope which, like any snow covered area. easily fools any CDAF.

What I've noticed clearly is the heightened number of false positive on 4/3 lenses.. A week ago, I posted a thread about my first experience with the 12-60 mm lens saying that the E-M5 was hunting much less vs. my E-P2 and that focus lock delay was basically reduced by a factor 2. Today, I'm less impressed about that speed: The E-P2 would basically never give me a false positive on the 12-60mm which is absolutely not the case with the E-M5. I can only conclude that Olympus "optimised" the speed of the E-M5 used with 4/3 lenses at the expense of accuracy..

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Henry Richardson
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incompetent reviewer?
In reply to papillon_65, May 6, 2012

papillon_65 wrote:

That's the problem when you get review sites who don't know how to set a camera up properly. Olympus cameras never give their best when shot straight out of the box or if the user doesn't understand how CDAF focusing works and when it can be fooled. You can make any camera look and perform badly if you are incompetent.

I just read the review and the reviewer loved the camera and gushes about it a lot. I gather that he is incompetent though so he's wrong and we can't believe him?

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CrashE3
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Porsche Struggles
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

with a 2-Ton payload too...

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Visualize Whirled Peas.

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damoclesnz
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Wrap up: "Simply put, we love the E-M5"
In reply to kermitG9, May 6, 2012

Overall quite a positive review - barring the focus issues. Which they suggest are 'arguably minor'.

Sadly they aren't so positive on the Pro 1, which is a superb camera (albeit also not perfect).

I went out in search of a new camera today and ended up with the OMD. Love it so far.

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papillon_65
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Re: incompetent reviewer?
In reply to Henry Richardson, May 6, 2012

Henry Richardson wrote:

papillon_65 wrote:

That's the problem when you get review sites who don't know how to set a camera up properly. Olympus cameras never give their best when shot straight out of the box or if the user doesn't understand how CDAF focusing works and when it can be fooled. You can make any camera look and perform badly if you are incompetent.

I just read the review and the reviewer loved the camera and gushes about it a lot. I gather that he is incompetent though so we can't believe him?

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Henry Richardson
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I posted on the basis that the OP was telling it as it was and he didn't provide the link. Either way, you can believe what you like, I never take any review as a basis for choosing a camera, whether gushing or negative. What I can say is that any camera's focusing system can be fooled but in my experience it's often user error or a lack of understanding of how they work. I have no doubt the OMD is neither any better nor any worse than any other camera in this respect.
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kermitG9
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Re: Wrap up: "Simply put, we love the E-M5"
In reply to damoclesnz, May 6, 2012

damoclesnz wrote:

Overall quite a positive review - barring the focus issues. Which they suggest are 'arguably minor'.

Yes .. focusing issues are "arguably minor". One can deal with lots of things when processing (raw-) files.. just not with out of focus pictures. Fortunately, in my case using 4/3 lenses, the out of focus is so obvious that I can easily spot it in the VF.. and for safety, I take every key shot twice by refocusing the camera.

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Tim F 101
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User error
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

From the review it sounds like he spent most of the test period shooting fast sports with C-AF in conditions that would challenge any camera (busy background with lots of contrasty objects, subject moving at odd angles relative to the camera etc). That's like spending most of a Nikon D4 test evaluating whether you can sneak it into the public theater. Sub optimal, as if a passing familiarity with the subject could not have told you that already.

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Nikonworks
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Re: User error
In reply to Tim F 101, May 6, 2012

Tim F 101 wrote:

From the review it sounds like he spent most of the test period shooting fast sports with C-AF in conditions that would challenge any camera (busy background with lots of contrasty objects, subject moving at odd angles relative to the camera etc). That's like spending most of a Nikon D4 test evaluating whether you can sneak it into the public theater. Sub optimal, as if a passing familiarity with the subject could not have told you that already.

Exactly.

He was stating the C-AF was bad in the snow and on the beach (as we all know already). But what he did say the S-AF was almost instant all of the time (being outdoors on a beach or in the snow).

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JJJPhoto
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In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

"Photographically inept tech geek fails to produce decent images and blaims the camera."

I have little interest in the E-M5 and don't plan to buy one, but if I was doing research on this camera I certainly wouldn't trust a review from Engadget.

I "might" trust Engadget to review a smartphone, tablet, or laptop, but even then I wouldn't put much weight behind those reviews. I would, however, trust the team at Engadget to deliver a quality review of a remote-controlled vibrator.

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Condor
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Re: User error
In reply to Tim F 101, May 6, 2012

Tim F 101 wrote:

From the review it sounds like he spent most of the test period shooting fast sports with C-AF in conditions that would challenge any camera (busy background with lots of contrasty objects, subject moving at odd angles relative to the camera etc). That's like spending most of a Nikon D4 test evaluating whether you can sneak it into the public theater. Sub optimal, as if a passing familiarity with the subject could not have told you that already.

Since you mention C-AF , and trying to provide objective information only for those who could be worth it .

And since we are at DPR forums, lets see what DPR said in its recent and so expected " In depht E-M5 review ":

C-AF:
"... slow and unpredictable ..."
"... the results simply aren't reliable enough..."
"... for such an expensive model ..."
"... it's a dissapointing result ."

Tracking:
" Tracking is a particular dissapointment ..."
"... it gets very easily distracted..."
"...No matter how distinct the subject might appear..."
"... combined with the contnuos AF's hunting ..."
"... you simply can't rely the system to get your shots in focus ."

Click on "(Original)":

Ed

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toscha_seidel
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Re: Which camera then can CAF well with CDAF?
In reply to Condor, May 6, 2012

I am curious to know then which CDAF camera can do superb CAF and trackng?

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texinwien
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Wow - that's a Rave Review if I've ever read one
In reply to Davidgilmour, May 6, 2012

I'll have to pay more attention to focusing, but I haven't had any real trouble yet.

Quote from the conclusion:

Simply put, we love the E-M5. It's a solid shooter -- literally, thanks to its "splash-proof body" -- with excellent image quality throughout the ISO range and a slick, versatile lens. That 5-axis stabilization is innovative as well, as is the incredibly fast focusing system. While powerful, that focusing system isn't perfect, often slipping with low-contrast sand and snow scenes. Still, that issue is arguably minor, considering that this camera isn't designed for sports-shooting pros, and, like the battery meter, it may be corrected with a firmware update.

Link:

http://www.engadget.com/2012/05/01/olympus-om-d-em-5-micro-four-thirds-camera-review/

Love how the original poster picked the single 'negative' point in the review and didn't bother to provide a link

Fanboy much?

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Davidgilmour
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Re: Wow - that's a Rave Review if I've ever read one
In reply to texinwien, May 6, 2012

Love how the original poster picked the single 'negative' point

Fanboy much?

Objection! The battery indicator ain't 100% reliable either

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