G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics

Started Feb 11, 2013 | Discussions
Hokie One
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G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
Feb 11, 2013

I am looking to upgrade from an EPL-1 to either a G5 or the OM-D (or EPL-5).  What do you think about the differences between the two camera for IQ and ergonomics. I have limited use of my right hand and the EPL-1 is hard for me to use comfortably.  Please no "only you can decide" comments, I am just looking for ideas.

Thank, Dave

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drtmw
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 11, 2013

Dear Dave,

I have a G5 and upgraded from a G3. I looked at an Oly but for my somewhat larger than average hands I found it fiddly and not that easy to hold comfortably and importantly not easy to actually use. The screens etc. were great of course, and the image quality is also great I understand. I am completely satisfied with the IQ of the G5 and I routinely shoot my G5 (with the great 12-35) single handed. It has, for me anyway just enough grip and the size and weight is not bad.  So I'd recommend it over the Oly on ergonomic grounds. I have contemplated one of the hand grip type straps and for you this might be great. I think the G5 is at the sweet spot for m4/3, great IQ, proper size, and reasonable price.

Good luck in your chase!

tom

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Danny Gee
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 11, 2013

Hi Dave:

I too have trouble with my right arm (old hockey injury) and I had to give up shooting with DSLR's so I went for the G5 with the power zoom lens -- it's great, and no pain from my arm.Hope this helps, but go into your camera store and try holding different cameras.

Danny

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bowportes
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to drtmw, Feb 11, 2013

wrote:

Dear Dave,

I have a G5 and upgraded from a G3. I looked at an Oly but for my somewhat larger than average hands I found it fiddly and not that easy to hold comfortably and importantly not easy to actually use. The screens etc. were great of course, and the image quality is also great I understand. I am completely satisfied with the IQ of the G5 and I routinely shoot my G5 (with the great 12-35) single handed. It has, for me anyway just enough grip and the size and weight is not bad. So I'd recommend it over the Oly on ergonomic grounds. I have contemplated one of the hand grip type straps and for you this might be great. I think the G5 is at the sweet spot for m4/3, great IQ, proper size, and reasonable price.

Good luck in your chase!

tom

A very nice summary of the G5. I second it completely. If your lenses have OIS, the image quality of the EM5 and G5  is very comparable, with a slight nod to the EM5 for very contrasty and very low-light shooting situations. The image quality of the G5 is excellent though, and it handles beautifully.

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bgalb
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 11, 2013

I am an E-M5 lover, but also agree that the G5 might be best for you.

Here is another thing I do for ease of handling and stability with long or heavy lenses.

I attach a collapsed monopod with a large foam rubber grip to the camera and support the camera by the monopod grip with my left hand with the monopod butt in my stomach and only use the right hand to stabilize the camera and trip the shutter.  This might be helpful for you.  Also my camera/monopod combo balances exactly at the monopod grip, so it is convenient to carry the camera  by the pod grip with my left arm hanging down at my side.  This is a very comfortable way to carry the camera on long walks while birding.

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Chas2
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 11, 2013

Hokie One wrote:

I am looking to upgrade from an EPL-1 to either a G5 or the OM-D (or EPL-5). What do you think about the differences between the two camera for IQ and ergonomics. I have limited use of my right hand and the EPL-1 is hard for me to use comfortably. Please no "only you can decide" comments, I am just looking for ideas.

Thank, Dave

Only you can decide...really...but after you try the different form factors out.

My two cents is it depends on how limited the use of your right hand is.  I am only guessing that your limited use means that it is difficult for you to grip and operate the controls which are right hand biased.  Personally, I find the grip of the Panasonic G (except the G3) and GH series to be very useful and comfortable, but I have full use of my right hand...I find I can hold those cameras all day with very little fatigue, primarily using the last three fingers of my hand, palm when the camera is hanging down at my side, and then adding the thumb, when in shooting position.  Using a GF1 or GX1, this comfort is not there, even though the cameras are lighter.  I have to say the built up rubberized grip of the GX1 is far superior to the GF1, but it does not hold a candle to the grip of the G (except G3) and GH series.

I do not have an Olympus, but I have handled the EPL3, EP3, and OMD.  All I find are less comfortable to grip and hold, more like the GF1 and GX1.  That is not to say they are uncomfortable, but none can hang all day from the last three finger or four fingers of your right hand with very little effort as the built in grip form factor.  The OMD is a very nice camera, and I think one could get used to it.  The thumb grip is very comfortable, substantial feeling cam. The OMD thumb grip area is more comfortable than the thumb grip areas of the G/GH cams, but the OMD body form factor puts a lot of strain on the last three fingers again, because of lack of a grip.  I have not tried the HLD6 grip, so cannot comment on it, other than to say it looks not nearly as deep as the grips on the G/GH cams which to me are the key to the comfortable hold, even by the way, with extended periods where the Panasonic 45-200 zoom, no small lens, is mounted.  The Panny 14-140 is even heavier, and is still comfortable on the G/GH cams (G3 excepted)

So bottom line is if you hold the camera mostly left handed, and just use your right hand to fiddle with controls, activate the shutter, I think you must have to try out the form factors.  Not knowing the extent of your right hand limitations, I could guess that the more spread out controls on the G/GH series might be easier to use, if the left hand does most the support...or not...back to the only you can really decide...

I find the large grip form factor allows me to both more easily hold and operate the G/GH cams over the more compact GF1/GX1 form factor which is more similar to the PEN line, and to a lesser extent, because of the nice thumb grip area, the OMD.

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Inkheart
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 11, 2013

I have the OM-D and love it, however I rarely complain about camera handling. One thing I can tell you though, is that it's not the easiest camera to hold, and the fact that it lacks such a pronounced grip it feels heavier than it actually is. I also have a superzoom camera, which is havier than the OM-D, but because it has a great deep grip it doesn't feel that way at all. So I guess the G5 would feel even lighter because of the grip (even though it weighs practically the same as the OM-D).

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BingoCharlie
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Inkheart, Feb 11, 2013

If you haven't invested in any m43 lenses beyond your kit zoom, you might try the Sony NEX-6. Its ergonomics are incredible and the grip is just excellent.

As an m43 owner, I always hope people will stay in the fold, but NEX-6 merits a hard look if handling is a top concern.

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Hokie One
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to BingoCharlie, Feb 11, 2013

Thanks for all the great feedback so far.  I am pretty invested in m4/3.  I bought th EPL 1 body from Cameta and have the Pan 14-45, 45-150 and the PL 25.

Dave

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tgutgu
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 11, 2013

G5 for ergonomics, E-M5 for IQ.

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Mike_PEAT
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In reply to Hokie One, Feb 12, 2013

When I temporarily lost use of my right hand due to an injury I got a flash bracket that was designed to be held with the LEFT hand.  I also had a remote shutter trigger to use with my left hand.

When I got some use of my hand back I got the grip strap in the following link:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/post/21819457

One part of the strap attaches to the camera's strap point, the other end to the tripod socket.

There's also straps that just wrap around the back of your hand, but it's easy for your hand to slip out.

Hokie One wrote:

Please no "only you can decide" comments, I am just looking for ideas.

When it comes to camera feel (for ANYONE), it is ONLY the end user that can decide what's right!

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TORN
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 12, 2013

Maybe you could indicate what exactly is difficult for you in handling your actual camera. This way we would have a better idea of what could be best for you.

I do own the E-M5 and to operate it usually needs two hands and requires to change the position of your right hand rather often if you want to do more then just pressing the shutter or using the front dial. On the other hand the E-M5 allows a very high grade of customization for most buttons and dials so even if you use only half of them you will most probably be able to have your most important functions on the buttons you are able to access.

I just wonder if a touch display would be of greater benefit to you. It can help a lot to snap pictures easily. With the E-M5 you just need to tip your finger on the screen where you want to have the focus and the snap is done.

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junyeu
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 12, 2013

Hokie One wrote:

I am looking to upgrade from an EPL-1 to either a G5 or the OM-D (or EPL-5). What do you think about the differences between the two camera for IQ and ergonomics. I have limited use of my right hand and the EPL-1 is hard for me to use comfortably. Please no "only you can decide" comments, I am just looking for ideas.

Thank, Dave

I had the G5 and replaced it with the OM-D. I thought the G5 had better handling and ergonomics which is why I got it first. It's a good camera overall but since I shoot mostly in low light it's not really useable even as a second body imo. The OM-D can produce results similar or even better than full frame bodies with its excellent IS. So even though the G5 technically has a better grip, the olympus is more comfortable to use since I don't have to force myself to keep extremely steady and sometimes I even have to hold my breath. I only use primes on m43 so it may be different if you have lenses with stabilisation.

If the G5 had the capabilities of the OM-D it would be the obvious choice. But since it doesn't exist yet, you can get close to having the benefits of both if you add the extra grip on the OM-D. Of course, it costs way more.

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DmitryDzhus
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 12, 2013

OM-D is way behind G5 in terms of ergonomics. Buttons are very tightly settled and stand out too much, the grip is a joke, brick design is sexy and stylish but painful to hold. I was also surprised by how badly the right strap ring is placed, it just hurts when I hold OM-D.

However, IS on OM-D is just amazing, it was literally challenging for me to make a blurry shot with this camera.

More importantly, I'm not sure if it's fair to compare a 600 dollar camera to a 1000 dollar one.

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Aleo Veuliah
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 12, 2013

Hokie One wrote:

I am looking to upgrade from an EPL-1 to either a G5 or the OM-D (or EPL-5). What do you think about the differences between the two camera for IQ and ergonomics. I have limited use of my right hand and the EPL-1 is hard for me to use comfortably. Please no "only you can decide" comments, I am just looking for ideas.

Thank, Dave

On the ergonomics side the G5 is better, if the OMD has no grip attached.

IQ is better on the OMD but it is not the same price of a G5 as you know.

This does not mean the G5 is bad on IQ, the difference is not much in EV terms on DR and noise.

I think you have to think if you really need the top IQ, and pay more for it, also and about talking of IQ, you may consider the Pansonic Lumix GH3 that together with the OMD have high IQ, and the ergonomics on the GH3 are great. I have tried both and that is my opinion.


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Ann Chaikin
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Aleo Veuliah, Feb 12, 2013

I have a G5 and a GH3. I the GH has really wonderful controls. Lots of buttons. But it is heavier. I tried the OMD. I didn't like the menu driven controls. I would recommend the g5for your needs. Easy to hold. Light. Good ergonomics. Fine image quality. Not far below the other two. Enjoy.

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FrankS009
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to tgutgu, Feb 12, 2013

Its not so cut and dried. The EM-5 may have more in-camera sharpening.

F.

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Alumna Gorp
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to Hokie One, Feb 12, 2013

Hokie One wrote:

I am looking to upgrade from an EPL-1 to either a G5 or the OM-D (or EPL-5). What do you think about the differences between the two camera for IQ and ergonomics. I have limited use of my right hand and the EPL-1 is hard for me to use comfortably. Please no "only you can decide" comments, I am just looking for ideas.

Thank, Dave

Try the OMD with its grip, it can make a huge difference to handling.

Play with the IBIS as well, its proved a revelation for some disabled users the in body IS is very good.

If you have a bunch of Olympus lenses even more reason to look at the OMD.

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Hen3ry
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You're really saying you have the OMD for IBIS
In reply to junyeu, Feb 12, 2013

junyeu wrote:

Hokie One wrote:

I am looking to upgrade from an EPL-1 to either a G5 or the OM-D (or EPL-5). ... I have limited use of my right hand and the EPL-1 is hard for me to use comfortably.

I had the G5 and replaced it with the OM-D. I thought the G5 had better handling and ergonomics which is why I got it first. It's a good camera overall but since I shoot mostly in low light it's not really useable even as a second body imo. The OM-D can produce results similar or even better than full frame bodies with its excellent IS. So even though the G5 technically has a better grip, the olympus is more comfortable to use since I don't have to force myself to keep extremely steady and sometimes I even have to hold my breath. I only use primes on m43 so it may be different if you have lenses with stabilisation.

Shooting with primes with no OIS, you need the OMD's IBIS, junyeu. Beginning and end of story.

BUT that might be a tip for you, Dave. Maybe the OMD's IBIS (and less so the E-PL5's, its IBIS isn’t as good) is what could push it over the line for you.

On the other hand, if you use Panny zooms on the G5 with OIS built in, that will give as good a result as the OMD and its IBIS 98% of the time.

Black cats in coal cellars are considered an exception! 

Cheers, geoff

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Hokie One
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Re: G5 vs OM-D for IQ and Ergonomics
In reply to TORN, Feb 12, 2013

I had a fracture/dislocation of my elbow and have nerve damage.  My last two fingers are completely numb with no real control and limited grip and fine motor skills with the thumb an first two fingers.

The EPL-1 is usable but not real comfortable to hold and use.

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