Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?

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Isabel Cutler
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Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
6 months ago

I photographed an event which was rather well lit with an e-pl1 and my 17mm f/1.8 and 45mm lenses and was frustrated by the sometimes stubborn focus acquisition.

I left my VF2 at home and shot using the lcd.  I used both normal and face recognition focus and was left frustrated many times by inaccurate focus.

What I'd like to know is do you have better luck with the em1 and these lenses.

It has been my observation that in general the gh2 achieves focus with the lcd faster than the e-pl5, so I'm wondering if I do have get a camera which has more reliable focus with these lenses if I would be better off with the gx7.

Isabel

Olympus E-M1 Olympus PEN E-PL1 Olympus PEN E-PL5 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX7
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micksh6
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

I have both E-PL5 and E-M1 and, with AF-S, E-PL5 focuses about as fast as E-M1. It's AF-C is where E-M1 is faster.
I owned E-PL5 for more than a year and never had problem to lock focus with LCD (I don't use EVF). Used your lenses too (I assume 45mm is Olympus). I still use E-PL5 as a second camera or when E-M1 is too big.

You mentioned both E-PL1 and E-PL5, which one was it?
I think it's well known that early Olympus m4/3 cameras were slow. It's E-P3, E-PL3 when they started to focus fast.

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to micksh6, 6 months ago

micksh6 wrote:

I have both E-PL5 and E-M1 and, with AF-S, E-PL5 focuses about as fast as E-M1. It's AF-C is where E-M1 is faster.
I owned E-PL5 for more than a year and never had problem to lock focus with LCD (I don't use EVF). Used your lenses too (I assume 45mm is Olympus). I still use E-PL5 as a second camera or when E-M1 is too big.

You mentioned both E-PL1 and E-PL5, which one was it?
I think it's well known that early Olympus m4/3 cameras were slow. It's E-P3, E-PL3 when they started to focus fast.

My mention of the e-pl1 was a mistake.  I do have that one as well, but was referring to the e-pl5.  I know the e-pl1 has focusing issues, but despite them I still love the camera!

Thanks for sharing your experiences.

Isabel

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Lindsay D
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

I have both. The EPL5 is a sensational little machine, outrageously fast in every way. Autofocus speed is on par with the EM1 in my opinion (in single auto focus it's unbelievably quick and accurate). My EPL5 is a great second camera or backup for professional assignments, and as a small walkaround camera for personal projects it's pretty much peerless.

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Lindsay D, 6 months ago

Thank you for your feedback.

I must be doing something wrong - I do know that it will refuse to focus if the green focus box is on the screen. You have to press the OK button before you can lock focus or make any adjustments to aperture, shutter speed, exposure compensation, etc.

Also you have to press the up cursor button before making changes - it's a time waster when you need to focus fast.

I imagine that is not the case with the EM1. Am wondering what the EM10 has in store.
Robin Wong has some fabulous images from it here: http://robinwong.blogspot.com/2014/01/guess-what-camera-i-am-reviewing-now.html

Isabel

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Lindsay D
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

Without knowing how you've set things up, it's difficult to advise. That isn't how my EPL5 behaves. I can shoot either in the normal view, where the focus box is represented by a fine square cross-hair, or else when I press the magnifier my focus point becomes a green box and I can alter the size of it at will, and to suit whatever purpose I have at the time, as well as quickly moving the focus box as needed. In this mode, if I alter a setting or carry out another procedure, it will default back to the standard view (where as I mentioned the focus box is a very fine grey crosshair). This is the same on the EM5 (except you don't have the option to have a small focus box in the standard view). But none of this affects the camera's ability to focus quickly and accurately.

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Lee Beasley
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

I don't own an E-PL5, but, right after I got the E-M1 in November, I shot an evening 65th birthday party in a typical dimly-lit country club banquet hall, mostly with the Olympus 45mm and 12-60, and I was just amazed at how fast it locked focus. It was easily as fast as any DSLR (Canon, Pentax) I've owned has ever been, and the pictures turned out drop-dead gorgeous. I had zero prior experience with good Olympus glass, and it just left me speechless.

I had only just sold off all my DSLR equipment and bought the camera/lenses a day or two before the party and really didn't have much of a chance to do anything with it beforehand. Plus, I figured it would be more stealthy to enable the touch-focus, so mostly I just literally poked the LCD and the shutter fired instantly. I was an immediate convert. I had a few throw-aways for stupid facial expressions, but none for out-of-focus or blur. I had to goose it to ISO 3200 and up just to get a decent shutter speed, but the noise was easily manageable and the prints are wonderful.

I made a photo book in Aperture as a birthday gift, and my friend is still whipping it out and showing it off to everyone who comes in range.

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Lindsay D, 6 months ago

Don't think I've ever seen that fine gray crosshair - how do you get it?

Isabel

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: Nice to hear such positive feedback (nt)
In reply to Lee Beasley, 6 months ago
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Vinc T
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

I have my e-pl5 for a few days now and I am still reading the user's guide. (Was using an e-pl1.)

You don't have to press the +/- every time before using the dial. You can go to Customer Menu B to disable the dial lock (i.e. the pressing of +/- first).

And if you see a green AF frame border, the camera has already find and lock a focus successfully. Were you in C-AF & C-AF+TR? In such cases, the camera will continue to find a new focus even if we half-pressed the shutter.

Also, I set both Rls Priority S or Rls Priority C to On so that I can take a picture even if the camera could not lock its focus.

Not sure if I understand your description completely and my suggestions could be totally irrelevant!

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Lindsay D
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Re: Do you own both an e-pl5 and an em1?
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

Isabel Cutler wrote:

Don't think I've ever seen that fine gray crosshair - how do you get it?

Isabel

It's what you see in the normal view/display. It's extremely fine so you can't always see it if you're photographing a busy scene. When you half press to focus it will go green to show you that focus has been locked on your target. In the other view I described, which is the magnification view (where you can make the focus box bigger or smaller) it's green all the time.

I agree with the previous suggestion to make absolutely sure you are in single autofocus mode.

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: I use Single Auto Focus + Manual...
In reply to Lindsay D, 6 months ago

Did test it in just SAF mode and all I get when I focus on something is a small green box (I have chosen to use the smallest focus box.

Isabel

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Isabel Cutler
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Re:And you've read the manual better than I have!
In reply to Vinc T, 6 months ago

Thank you so much for mentioning disabling the dial lock!  I am going to have to try using the wheel for changing settings.

It can be fiddly at times and I had to send mine in for repair about a month ago, while still under warranty, because the settings kept fluctuating and wouldn't stay put.

Looking forward to seeing how I can adjust to using the wheel without accidentally pressing a cursor spot.

Thanks again.

Isabel

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Lindsay D
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Re: I use Single Auto Focus + Manual...
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

Isabel Cutler wrote:

Did test it in just SAF mode and all I get when I focus on something is a small green box (I have chosen to use the smallest focus box.

Isabel

Yes, that's correct. If you've set it to the smallest focus point you probably won't see the fine grey crosshair square I described (but it does exist). As I mentioned, if you want the green focus box to be on all the time (for example to make sure you're hovering over the exact bit of the thing you want to focus on) then you would switch to the other view (bearing in mind that if you then alter any settings it will default back to the normal view). Hope that makes sense.

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: No, I wasn't in a continuous focus mode
In reply to Vinc T, 6 months ago

...I do, however, have to press the up (+/-) cursor to adjust exposure compensation.

I know that can be assigned to the function button but it's harder to find that than just pressing the up cursor to access the adjustment,

I really like the e-pl5 and probably should spend more time with the manual experimenting with different customizations to make my interface with it faster.

Isabel

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Vinc T
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Re: No, I wasn't in a continuous focus mode
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

Depending on what I shoot, using the small focusing box could slow focusing down quite a bit as there wasn't too much information inside the box for making a focusing decision. Guess I will set it back to the default size very soon for my kind of shooting.

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: I use Single Auto Focus + Manual...
In reply to Lindsay D, 6 months ago

Lindsay D wrote:

Isabel Cutler wrote:

Did test it in just SAF mode and all I get when I focus on something is a small green box (I have chosen to use the smallest focus box.

Isabel

Yes, that's correct. If you've set it to the smallest focus point you probably won't see the fine grey crosshair square I described (but it does exist). As I mentioned, if you want the green focus box to be on all the time (for example to make sure you're hovering over the exact bit of the thing you want to focus on) then you would switch to the other view (bearing in mind that if you then alter any settings it will default back to the normal view). Hope that makes sense.

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Not sure I understand what you mean by "switch to the other view", but thanks for the feedback.

Isabel

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Isabel Cutler
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Re: Too much information in the box for making a focusing decision????
In reply to Vinc T, 6 months ago

Vinc T wrote:

Depending on what I shoot, using the small focusing box could slow focusing down quite a bit as there wasn't too much information inside the box for making a focusing decision. Guess I will set it back to the default size very soon for my kind of shooting.

Seems to me a larger box would have even more information.

Isabel

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Lindsay D
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Re: I use Single Auto Focus + Manual...
In reply to Isabel Cutler, 6 months ago

Isabel Cutler wrote:

Lindsay D wrote:

Isabel Cutler wrote:

Did test it in just SAF mode and all I get when I focus on something is a small green box (I have chosen to use the smallest focus box.

Isabel

Yes, that's correct. If you've set it to the smallest focus point you probably won't see the fine grey crosshair square I described (but it does exist). As I mentioned, if you want the green focus box to be on all the time (for example to make sure you're hovering over the exact bit of the thing you want to focus on) then you would switch to the other view (bearing in mind that if you then alter any settings it will default back to the normal view). Hope that makes sense.

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Not sure I understand what you mean by "switch to the other view", but thanks for the feedback.

Isabel

As per my first response, if you press the button with the magnifier icon on it, you can make adjustments to the view (as in change the magnification, size of the green square etc). I find it useful to work between the standard view, and this, at times.

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Barry Stewart
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Still looking for crosshairs...
In reply to Vinc T, 6 months ago

Thanks for bringing this topic up, Isabel. Fellow E-PL5 owner here. I have my E-M1 in my closet, waiting till I sell off my redundant gear. (It's painful, but I promised.)

Lindsay talks of a 'crosshair'… but may have meant a box made of four corners like these: ‹ › (Sorry… can't make all four corners on the keyboard. They are like the corners you use to tack down photos in an old-style photo album.)

If this is what Lindsay means: yes, I can see these ghosted marks when I have chosen a single green square (not rectangle) for my focus area. This is to remind shooters of where they have locked their focus point. It's pretty subtle, but it's there. When you half-press, the green square pops up where the 4-corners were.

If I choose wide-area focus — where all parts of the green focus grid are sensitive — then there is no ghosted target on the screen. This is my most usual S-AF setting. I half-press the shutter and if the green square (or face detect white square) don't lock where I want them to, I back off and try the half-press again. I only choose a single square if the wide-area (and face detect) aren't working for me.

There is a slight-but-perceptible lag in using the touch-screen shutter compared to the actual button (even in MF), so I usually go with the shutter for people shots or where timing is critical. The touch-screen is a great option, though, if you need to stretch overhead or put the camera in odd places, where the shutter isn't easy to poke.

'Not sure if I've answered your original question — but there's lots in this thread to learn.

The E-PL5 continues to bring me great pleasure. After a year, the "wow" factor hasn't worn thin. I do need the E-M1 for bad weather for my 4/3 lenses, though.

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Barry

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