Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5

Started Apr 2, 2013 | Discussions
Neurad1
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Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5
Apr 2, 2013

I am traveling to Ireland soon and would like to have an unobstrusive pocketable camera to use indoors (or outdoors when appropriate/necessary). I want it have IQ sufficient that if (God forbid) something happened to the Oly I would still come home with good pictures. I have a Canon S95 that is good, but perhaps not worthy of the role I describe above. I can't afford a Sony RX1 (and it's not pocketable, at least in my pants). So.....

I'm looking for opinions about the best pocketable camera to be the Robin to my OMD Batman. I have posted in this forum because I really am interested in what other M43 users would consider a worthy companion/backup in this category. If you all agree with my wife that: "I don't NEED a new camera, just bring the dang S95" then vote for that. Thanks for indulging me.

I'm considering:

Sony RX1

Nikon Coolpix A

?Others

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Ulric
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Re: Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

How big are your pants pockets? Would you consider an E-PM2 with a 14mm pancake pocketable? It certainly has IQ enough.

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Martin.au
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Re: Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

A Pen. Then you can use the same lenses.

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NZ Scott
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Sony RX100
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

Neurad1 wrote:

I am traveling to Ireland soon and would like to have an unobstrusive pocketable camera to use indoors (or outdoors when appropriate/necessary). I want it have IQ sufficient that if (God forbid) something happened to the Oly I would still come home with good pictures. I have a Canon S95 that is good, but perhaps not worthy of the role I describe above. I can't afford a Sony RX1 (and it's not pocketable, at least in my pants). So.....

I'm looking for opinions about the best pocketable camera to be the Robin to my OMD Batman. I have posted in this forum because I really am interested in what other M43 users would consider a worthy companion/backup in this category. If you all agree with my wife that: "I don't NEED a new camera, just bring the dang S95" then vote for that. Thanks for indulging me.

I'm considering:

Sony RX1

Nikon Coolpix A

?Others

Instead of the RX1, have you considered the RX100?

That's the camera I would buy right now if I was in the market for a compact - awesome image quality in a package no bigger than your S95 (might even be smaller).

I tried one in a store and the only thing I didn't like about it was that it's 28mm at the short end. I like to shoot 24mm equivalent.

Still, it's got a fantastic lens (f1.8 at the short end) and a big 1" sensor from the king of sensor-makers.

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kenw
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Sony RX100...
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

The RX100 is my pocket backup.  It is good enough that I consider it a replacement for a m43 camera with a kit lens.  And it is truly pocketable unlike say an X100S.  Actually smaller than my LX3.  I think one of the RX100 reviews shows it next to an S95.

That said, I might also side with your wife.  The S95 is a really nice camera.  Yes, it won't produce a 20x30 print indoors in low light.  But it will do great for web and 8x10.  I did a trip to Switzerland and Poland with only an LX3 and FZ28 and was quite happy with the results.  Did Paris awhile back with only the LX3 and was quite happy with the results there as well.

The RX100 is definitely better than the S95 or LX3 for low light.  Is it $650 better?  I'm not entirely sure - I often am in good light where the LX3 would do just fine.  I've been waffling with selling mine used and just running with the old LX3 instead.  So far still keeping the RX100 but it really doesn't get enough use from me.

I think I'd cringe even more at the price of the Nikon A - as much as on paper I love the concept.  While a "fast prime" makes one feel all "Leica like" the reality is the Nikon A's lens isn't really going to render that shallow a DoF and a zoom is much more practical for flexibility in composition.  Actually, in "35mm equivalent" terms for DoF the Nikon A is a 28/4.2 while the RX100 is a 28/4.9 - they generate almost the same DoF at 28mm equivalent while the RX100 costs about half, is smaller and has a zoom to go with it.

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Ken W
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FoolyCooly
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Re: Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5
In reply to Martin.au, Apr 2, 2013

Mjankor wrote:

A Pen. Then you can use the same lenses.

+1. Surely there is room in your bag for one of these.

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Neurad1
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Re: Sony RX100
In reply to NZ Scott, Apr 2, 2013
-

NZ Scott wrote:

Neurad1 wrote:

I am traveling to Ireland soon and would like to have an unobstrusive pocketable camera to use indoors (or outdoors when appropriate/necessary). I want it have IQ sufficient that if (God forbid) something happened to the Oly I would still come home with good pictures. I have a Canon S95 that is good, but perhaps not worthy of the role I describe above. I can't afford a Sony RX1 (and it's not pocketable, at least in my pants). So.....

I'm looking for opinions about the best pocketable camera to be the Robin to my OMD Batman. I have posted in this forum because I really am interested in what other M43 users would consider a worthy companion/backup in this category. If you all agree with my wife that: "I don't NEED a new camera, just bring the dang S95" then vote for that. Thanks for indulging me.

I'm considering:

Sony RX1

Nikon Coolpix A

?Others

Instead of the RX1, have you considered the RX100?


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I meant to type in RX100 but screwed up. I mentioned that the RX1 was out of my price range. Indeed, the RX100 is on my list. Thanks.

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Neurad1
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Re: Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5
In reply to Ulric, Apr 2, 2013

Interesting suggestion.....the only problem is I don't have the 14mm pancake lens. I have just about everything else....see my gear page. I will consider this, though. Thanks.

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BigBarney
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My backup tactic
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

Neurad1 wrote:

I am traveling to Ireland soon and would like to have an unobstrusive pocketable camera to use indoors (or outdoors when appropriate/necessary). I want it have IQ sufficient that if (God forbid) something happened to the Oly I would still come home with good pictures. I have a Canon S95 that is good, but perhaps not worthy of the role I describe above. I can't afford a Sony RX1 (and it's not pocketable, at least in my pants). So.....

I'm looking for opinions about the best pocketable camera to be the Robin to my OMD Batman. I have posted in this forum because I really am interested in what other M43 users would consider a worthy companion/backup in this category. If you all agree with my wife that: "I don't NEED a new camera, just bring the dang S95" then vote for that. Thanks for indulging me.

I'm considering:

Sony RX1

Nikon Coolpix A

My travel/vacation camera is typically my GH2 with 14-140mm, 20mm, 100-300mm, 7-14mm and 45mm macro, all living with a spare battery and charger in a rucksack. I am big and strong enough to carry this bag all day and to live with the camera on the neckstrap all the time.Sitting in the pocket at the top of the rucksack is also my Panasonic LX3. Admittedly this is a little larger than your S95, but it is still a very small and capable camera and only slightly down on specification to the more current LX7. If you do not want to spend more money on gear then I would support your wife's view/SHOUT that you should stay with the S95, leaving you more money to spend on the Guinness!

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steven168z
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Re: Sony RX100
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

very strange...

Winner is RX100

Olympus OM-D E-M5 vs Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

http://snapsort.com/compare/Olympus-E-M5-vs-Sony-Cybershot-DSC-RX100

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kenw
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No IS on Nikon A...
In reply to kenw, Apr 2, 2013

One other thing I just noticed, the Nikon A doesn't have any sort of image stabilization!  That makes it compare very unfavorably to the RX100 in my book.  I love the flexibility of IS.  This is a shot from Paris with the LX3 - hand-held and braced with IS turned on I was able to get the nice blurring effect on the organist with the rest of the image sharp (1/2 sec exposure):

I really consider IS an absolutely must have feature on a travel camera.  Considering the Nikon A and RX100 both have Sony sensors (similar performance for sensor size) and they have similar equivalent lenses this means that when shutter speed constrained the low-light IQ of each will be the same (i.e. the smaller RX100 sensor is compensated for by its faster lens).  Now add in the IS on the RX100 and it is actually the better low light performer...

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Ken W
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rube39
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Re: Sony RX100
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

I would vote with your wife.

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Neurad1
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Re: No IS on Nikon A...
In reply to kenw, Apr 2, 2013

kenw wrote:

One other thing I just noticed, the Nikon A doesn't have any sort of image stabilization!  That makes it compare very unfavorably to the RX100 in my book.  I love the flexibility of IS.  This is a shot from Paris with the LX3 - hand-held and braced with IS turned on I was able to get the nice blurring effect on the organist with the rest of the image sharp (1/2 sec exposure):

I really consider IS an absolutely must have feature on a travel camera.  Considering the Nikon A and RX100 both have Sony sensors (similar performance for sensor size) and they have similar equivalent lenses this means that when shutter speed constrained the low-light IQ of each will be the same (i.e. the smaller RX100 sensor is compensated for by its faster lens).  Now add in the IS on the RX100 and it is actually the better low light performer...

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Ken W
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First of all, beautiful shot.

I guess sticking with the S95 might be a reasonable choice, but I am concerned about its low light sensitivity. I plan on shooting in pubs and at some music/dance events......

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Neurad1
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Re: My backup tactic
In reply to BigBarney, Apr 2, 2013

BigBarney wrote:

Neurad1 wrote:

I am traveling to Ireland soon and would like to have an unobstrusive pocketable camera to use indoors (or outdoors when appropriate/necessary). I want it have IQ sufficient that if (God forbid) something happened to the Oly I would still come home with good pictures. I have a Canon S95 that is good, but perhaps not worthy of the role I describe above. I can't afford a Sony RX1 (and it's not pocketable, at least in my pants). So.....

I'm looking for opinions about the best pocketable camera to be the Robin to my OMD Batman. I have posted in this forum because I really am interested in what other M43 users would consider a worthy companion/backup in this category. If you all agree with my wife that: "I don't NEED a new camera, just bring the dang S95" then vote for that. Thanks for indulging me.

I'm considering:

Sony RX1

Nikon Coolpix A

My travel/vacation camera is typically my GH2 with 14-140mm, 20mm, 100-300mm, 7-14mm and 45mm macro, all living with a spare battery and charger in a rucksack. I am big and strong enough to carry this bag all day and to live with the camera on the neckstrap all the time.Sitting in the pocket at the top of the rucksack is also my Panasonic LX3. Admittedly this is a little larger than your S95, but it is still a very small and capable camera and only slightly down on specification to the more current LX7. If you do not want to spend more money on gear then I would support your wife's view/SHOUT that you should stay with the S95, leaving you more money to spend on the Guinness!

My wife appreciates this. I just hope the S95 will have sufficient low light sensitivity for pubs and music/dance events.

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James Pilcher
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but, the price...and the Fuji X100s
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

Neurad1 wrote:

Interesting suggestion.....the only problem is I don't have the 14mm pancake lens. I have just about everything else....see my gear page. I will consider this, though. Thanks.

Edit: I now see that you meant RX100. Different beast altogether. That probably puts a Fuji X100s out of your price range too. Oh well, we all can dream. 

You may not have the 14mm f/2.5, but purchasing it along with an E-PM2 body is still way cheaper than either of the options you laid out at the beginning.

The Sony RX1 is not pocketable in the traditional sense, but offers image quality in spades.

The Nikon A seems to have stellar possibilities if you believe what DXO tells you.

Why not a Fuji X100s if you are considering the Nikon and Sony? It has the viewfinder the Nikon lacks and the classic 35mm FOV that the Sony offers.

Jim Pilcher
Summit County, Colorado, USA

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BingoCharlie
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Re: but, the price...and the Fuji X100s
In reply to James Pilcher, Apr 2, 2013

I used an S95 as my only camera for over a year.  I often look back fondly on the pictures I took with it.  Pixel peepers wouldn't like them, but they have a wonderful pop and depth that belies the S95's size.  I had an S100 after that and never liked it as much.  Don't know if it was the switch from CCD to CMOS, but the S100's images lacked the charm of the S95's.

I agree with your wife: keep the S95.  It's a gem.  If you must upgrade, I agree with others that the RX100 would be more than sufficient.

If you're really worried about having a backup for indoor events, consider shooting film.  You can pick up an Olympus Stylus Epic with a razor sharp fixed 35mm f/2.8 lens for about $80 on eBay.  It takes beautiful low light photos with 400 film.  This shot was taken in the waning evening light using ASA 400 b&w film.

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James Pilcher
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Lumix LX7
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

I have great fun with my Lumix LX7. It can be had for as little as $298 if you keep your eyes open at Amazon, B&H, and Adorama.

It has a terrific 24-90mm f/1.4-2.3 lens, offers an optional electronic viewfinder (a very nice one) and can be set up to take filters. I very much like the easy way I can use a polarizer with my P&S now.

Watching the watchers.

Colorado High Country winter

Jim Pilcher
Summit County, Colorado, USA

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kenw
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Re: No IS on Nikon A...
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

Thanks for the complement!

I expect the music/dance events would be the most taxing.  In pubs you can usually pull of shots because people don't move much.  Music/dance much harder - plus often really nasty light.

I guess the question is will you be restricted to using your compact at such places or would you likely be pulling out your E-M5?  If your S95 is just a backup in case something bad happens to your E-M5 then that S95 will do great for everything but the music/dance I suspect.  If, on the other hand, you expect not to use your E-M5 even if it is working fine at a music/dance event then maybe something like the RX100 is in order.

Oh, and I would also second others recommendations to look at the E-PM2 as an even more capable back up.  Not quite as good at "pocketable" but certainly a more capable back up for your E-M5 body as you will still be able to use all your lenses.  And given how pricey the RX100 is, a 14/2.5 off of E-bay and a brand new E-PM2 are the same price.

Anyway - a balancing act - sounds like you want your second camera to fill a few different roles.  You'll need to decide which roles are the greatest priority and then factor in the cost as well.

Neurad1 wrote:

First of all, beautiful shot.

I guess sticking with the S95 might be a reasonable choice, but I am concerned about its low light sensitivity. I plan on shooting in pubs and at some music/dance events......

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Ken W
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jquagga
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Re: Pocket backup for my OMD EM-5
In reply to Neurad1, Apr 2, 2013

I picked up a GF5 with the X lens for this role. In performance it probably doesn't beat the RX100 but its half the price. It is slightly larger, but it can take all of your m43 lenses.

For better performance I'd consider the EPM1 or 2. Or get the deal on the GX1.

I mean you already have the "small" camera system. Might as well make it a system.

As a Nikon DSLR guy, the Coolpix A is really expensive and it has a fixed lens. I don't see paying that much for what it is. Buy a PEN and the X lens and another PEN with that much money!

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ElessarJD
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Re: No IS on Nikon A...
In reply to kenw, Apr 2, 2013

Not sure why it's not discussed, maybe it's too new, but if IQ is a concern of yours the new Nikon Coolpix A is a pocketable camera with an APS-C sensor in it.  I've been considering one ever since I heard about it.  The price is a bit steep, but to have a pocketable camera with automatic lens cover and a sensor that big is pretty tempting.

I have an RX100 and in well lit scenarios it works wonderfully.  In low light, it's okay, I wouldn't go above ISO 800.  I hear the Coolpix A can go up to ISO 3200 giving you a lot more low light flexibility.  I need to investigate more thought.

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