Ayoh: I am surprised by the unilateral enthusiasm for the EVF viewfinder. Based on my experience with the EM-1, the EVF gives a very pleasant experience in low and general indoor light. However in bright outdoor lighting with high contrast, the EVF experience is really behind that of an optical viewfinder due to low DR, brightness and washout due to stray light.
However it is still probably the flagship EVF experience. Especially compared to say a Fuji XE-1 which is genuinely poor with its slow refresh rate causing tearing effects even with slow panning, pixaleted view during AF, noise in low light. An OVF is still definitely best for clarity in bright light.
what exactly do you use your viewfinder for? The optical viewfinder's ONLY purpose is composition. That is it. That is its one and only purpose.
what is an EVF used for? Composition. Same as the OVF.
everything you've listed as a positive for an ovf is quite inconsequential to composition. I could composed using a b&w viewfinder. It really wouldn't matter. All that unlimited dynamic range you see in your viewfinder? Doesn't do squat all for taking the shot. When I shoot, I don't sit there enjoying my.dynamic range. I compose and shoot.
both ovf and evf perform the same exact function.
Frank C.: for 500$ I would consider it ... but barely. That sensor is not worth the money they're asking for no matter how you slice or dice it
For $500 you can buy an entry level mirrorless or a low end dslr. This thing is fully weather sealed, mag alloy body, manual controls, large evf, has the fastest and most accurate s-af outside of a 1DX, is light, is small and is fully body stabilized allowing you to hand hold shots as slow as 1/2 sec.
let me know any camera that can best that at $500. Even in its price range, you'll be hard pressed to find anything comparable.
AlexRuiz: Here is my own experience for what it’s worth, as the EM-5 and EM-1 are fairly similar.
In early 2013 I purchased 2 cameras, a D600 and an EM-5. The D600 I bought with my fingers crossed based on all the baggage and negative reviews about oil spots and stuff. The EM-5 I excitingly purchased based on the extremely positive reviews.
Almost a year later, the D600 never had any oil spot issues (or whatever) and it has surpassed my expectations. The image quality is just superb. Regarding the EM-5, I found all those overwhelmingly positive reviews to contain a fair amount of exaggeration. While being a good camera, the EM-5 image quality is not as great as many would want you to believe; definitely not on par with the D600.
Verdict: I take the D600 any day of the week and will be keeping it indefinitely. The EM-5 will be sold (as will be the pana 14mm f2.5 and pana 20mm f1.7). Anyone interested let me know.
Ummm you are comparing a pretty capable full frame camera to a m4/3 camera and are surprised the d600 produces better IQ? Not to mention the pricing is not even comparable, neither is the size and weight.
these are two very different cameras. For what the em5 is, it competes very well against all but the absolute best apsc. All the hype the em5 received is warranted but I'm not sure what hype you read because even here they state moving up to FF would get your appreciable quality difference over the em5.
you might as well compare a phase one with a apsc camera and tell us how you were surprised the phase one takes more detailed pictures!
that 12-40 pro zoom is an incredible lense. i prefer the images shot with them to any of my primes. for all intents and purposes, it performs like a prime at all focal lengths, albeit slower at f2.8.
i only pop on the primes now if i really need a smaller package and depth of field control. but in terms of optical quality, it's very impressive.
NumberOne: Not having 'EC in Manual Mode with Auto-ISO' - something easily implemented in a firmware upgrade - still is, for me, the (main) deal breaker!Funny - to say the least - that most reviewers don't even talk about it, specially when this is the top-of-the-line Olympus camera and the one supposed to be used by professional photographers... :)
i shoot mostly manual and sometimes with auto iso on M. what you are asking for is unnecessary because you can shoot in A or S priority. also in M mode, you set shutter and aperture & can trigger iso with a button, then dial in the "compensation" accordingly.
or are you asking for one of the dials to control iso in M? maybe allowed as a customisation?
StevenE: It's not small enough to be more convenient than my 5DIII, and if you want any shallow DOF you need at least an f/1.4 lens. Aperture f/2.8 is often sufficient on the FF, which can be beautifully thin at f/1.4.
So what use does this m4/3 serve? I would still have to bring the FF to get shallow DOF and low light performance, and I still don't get compact size. I could see m4/3 IF the package was pocketable, but I'd probably still head to the Sony A7, or one of the Fuji APS-C cameras for that.
Can't see the purpose in this one.
the em1 is signifigantly smaller and lighter than a 5d3. it seems the shape of the camera is giving ppl the impression it is big. it really isnt. it's the same physical dimension as an em5 for all intents and purposes. the only thing bigger is the grip.
that zoom they have on it is what makes it big. but keep in mind, that is a 24-80mm equi zoom. stick a ff zoom on the 5d3 and it is much, much larger and heavier. if you want smaller sizes, just stick with the array of very small primes of m4/3. the camera with primes on is a near exact dimension for the em5, except for a built in grip.
this is NOT a big camera. nor is it "close" to dslr size.
Valentinian: is E M1 AF faster than E M-5 AF with micro 4/3 lenses mounted on both cameras? how faster?
in other words: did Olympus improve the contrast AF ? or did contrast detection AF already reach its limit?
sorry late reply. i only work the camera between 12-45mm and carry the primes at those focal lengths. the only zoom i use on it is the 12-40 pro. mainly shoot indoor events so zoom longer focal lengths hasnt been necessary for me. sorry cant answer that for you.
tbh the low light capability is impressive but checking against the em1, it is pretty close right up to iso 3200, considering how much smaller the sensor is.only at 6400 does it fall behind.
the alpha 7 is a little dissappointing though just barely edging on the 5d3
pdelux: Olympus on a roll. Love it or hate it, one must applaud the sheer audacity to put a sensor half the size of 35mm in a Pro body and compete against cameras twice the weight/size (some of them). They delivered the IQ, the body and the finally the promise of m4/3 is fulfilled. It took 5 years but they got there. Bravo.
plastek, you are trolling. the em1 outperforms any ff body at that price range, is weather sealed, has class leading stabilisation and is rugged, has fast/accurate focus and has very good controls.
at that price range, the ff cameras may win on IQ and maybe another metric but in literally everything else, the em1 is the better camera.
a camera is more than just sheer IQ. it's the sum of its parts and the em1 is one of the most competent cameras you can buy. you want a better ff camera than the em1 is a camera, you have to spend more.
but there's no convincing ppl like you because you're only here to hate.
Reinhard136: I do need a new camera, and would love to go for the EM1 - but how can anyone live without a flash ?? Pls explain if all the size and cuteness is out the window, when it seems like a car with 3 wheels ? I would have thought flash and viewfinders are the non-negotiables ? I had the Nex 6, which on paper seems to be the best all round, and better than the EM1, and I thought I was pleased with. But when it went thru the washing machine (a disadvantage of being small) I felt no longing to replace it. I realized I liked it not loved it. The skinny body never felt right, and the lag after each foto cost a lot of good shots. I tried my old DSLR again, and realized it was so much more satisfying. Hence the EM1 ? ... but no flash ? does it freeze after each shot too ? The poorer PQ seems less important, as they are all pretty good anyway.The Nikon leaves me cold, just a bit less than the K3 in every department, except the "prestige" . Seems K3's only problem is size.
i went from the nex 7 to the em1. the em1 is a much better camera and more reliable even if it loses out on some IQ.
you have a small kit flash on the em1. i have it on all the time. i dont have a problem with this because i got it to shoot professionally, which means a proper flash unit.
also, there's no lag. just keep shooting. the internal buffer is huge even shooting raw. the em1 is not a camera you will miss shots with.
BNapa: When I shot weddings regularly about 7 years ago. I suffered through Canon's sub par focusing and flash system. I envied my friend's Nikons for what Canon lacked. Then again I was shooting mid-range Canons and they were shooting high-end Nikons.
When I picked up my Pentax K5IIs, I had high hopes that the focusing would be better than my 6D's but it was not.
What I charged did not warrant or support buying high-end Canon or Nikons to get a camera that would focus when i asked it to. I have high hopes that K3 would be the camera.
I would gladly use manual focus just so the camera allows me to triger the shutter at the right moment. But my eyesight is not what it used to be so I have to rely on autofocus.
I miss a lot of good shots because of the focusing problem. My 5D, 7D and now the 6D and the k5IIs all have the same problem.
Do I have to switch to Nikon to get it done?
if fast and accurate af is necessity, you may want to check out the EM1. i know the focus issues you are talking about from canon and the EM1 is the most reliable shooter next to anything but the very most expensive high end cameras.
it's blazing fast and near 100% accurate. the few shots where it misfocussed was in extremely low light or in backlighting that creates such heavy foreground show i can barely make out facial detail in the parts shrouded in shadow. but to be honest that would foil nearly any camera.
what this means is in the near future, cameras will get more expensive as they no longer can scale to market. as a result, pro photography will become more expensive to offset.
we will soon lose the ability for general ppl to get access to relatibvely affordable pro photog service. $2500 per wedding now will push those prices up since access to equipment will cost a lot more and maintenance of those overheads become more difficult.
there's opportunity there for anyone who survived or plans to survive.
cameras are changing as are the people who use them.
in many instances, dslr owners were always the wrong fit. they bought the things in droves to set on auto thinking since it looks pro they will get pro quality.
i'd argue the enthusiast segment is growing but not enough to offset the much larger loss of the bottom segment who never really needed a dslr but used to buy one.
in the near future, it will be broken down into 3 segments which ypu see happening already: consumer smartphone, ILC (enthusiast), DSLR (pro).
camera makers will, in the future have to cater for their markets, they already lost the consumer part, the part that was the wrong fit for the form anyway.
note how cameras are getting more enthusiast friendly even pushing right into pro category (em1). they, for a short time got simpler but are now quickly targetting a more advanced market. the consumer space is dead; was only a matter of time.
mailman88: From Camera Lab: Sony Alpha A7r verdictGOOD: I'll cut straight to the chase: the Sony Alpha A7r is one of the most impressive and exciting cameras I've ever tested. This is a camera which delivers the quality of the Nikon D800e in a body which weighs half as much and costs almost one third less.
BAD: My biggest issue concerns autofocus. The A7r's contrast-based AF system is fairly leisurely under good light and quite lethargic in dim conditions. Shoot in very low light or with a small AF area under challenging conditions and it may not even lock-on at all. It's noticeably inferior to the speed and confidence of the contrast-based AF system on modern Micro Four Thirds cameras, albeit roughly similar to the Live View AF on full-frame DSLRs.
@howaboutraw,top range m4/3 is just as good as apsc. it only loses out by about 1/3 a stop against the very best sensor. it's only against ff will you see or notice any real difference. up against apsc there's very fe cameras that can match say, an em1 IQ and overall performance number. in fact, as a camera, the em1 is one of the best performing cameras out there, only losing out at absolute tracking.
this has been bourne out by reviews as well as real shooters. if you want a complete package of performance, iq, small size and handling, you go get an em1. you want absolute iq over anything else, you get ff. you can skip apsc altogether.
plasnu: A professional and unbiased review. I'm sick of Steve H or someone's unprofessional impressions on their commercial BLOG.
umm Steve Huff is all about the shooting experience and IQ. He makes it well known he wants you to use the links on his site to order.
he's passionate about photography and that's how he reviews. from his reviews you get a sense of real world performance and real world IQ, not tests and mft numbers.
i see nothing wrong with how he reviews. to say he is pushing for gas while other sites are not is laughably naive. he only likes very specific cameras and does not hide it.
Vizio Virtù: Wake up, folks. They try to sell you this mirrorless / EVF rubbish as innovation for your weightsaving comfort but actually it's only for their cost reducing purposes. Cutting off the OVF is cutting off photographers creativity.
how does an evf hinder creativity? that's ridiculous. ask yourself what a viewfinder is for. it's for framing, nothing else. absolutely 100% for framing.
there iis no mystical, magical difference to what you can do with an ovf vs and evf. none.
ijustloveshooting: just compared to D800 high isos... 7R shows clearly more detail and less noise...it can be clearly seen on iso6400 and 12800 comparison...great performer in lowlight....
while i agree there really isn't much to differentiate in terms of IQ since most modern cameras all produce great pictures, there is still a noticable 1 stop iq performance difference between any of the full frame and the best m4/3, the EM1, which i own and shoot for events.
iso 6400 on these FF show similar level of detail & noise as iso 3200 on the em1.
but for all practical purposes, minus shallow dof, you're right, there isn't any real difference. they are there but at this point, imo, the overall package is more important.
wansai: Checked it against the EM1 & especially at high ISO, the EM1 destroys the galaxy NX in jpeg and RAW. It's apsc, surely they can do far better than that.
at that price bracket, that's some serious underperformance in sensor.
I'm only going purely by what is shown in that comparison chart from DPR as I have googled around for RAW files from the galaxy NX & only managed to find daylight raw files.
And in that chart, from 1600 onwards, the OMD pulls well ahead of the NX in every measurement. I've used several cameras in that chart & the performance correlates closely to what I was able to get from the files - so roughly, I'd be more willing to believe this than any other observation.
I'd be willing to change my mind if I could get my hands on some low light RAWS.
Naveed Akhtar: why would you need an android camera? when you can do pretty much everything with a wifi - nfc link to a mobile phone and it also act as a remote!!
Apps mean next to nothing on a camera priced into pro territory. All that matters to a pro is absolute usability & IQ; not mucking about with apps.
Apps are for smartphones and possibly, a more niche use in the camera world to extend some photographic function.
What you are suggesting shows a lack of understanding of the differences between the two products and what they do.
If you're paying $1600 for the body of the Galaxy NX, you're already crossed into pro body territory but with the mess & clunkiness of the consumer space.
The question really is why anyone who needs apps would need to spend $1600 on a camera?
Who not buy, say, an OMD EM1 & tether it to a smartphone. Shoot it & it sends direct to the phone. Your processing on the phone won't then drain your camera battery.
You still get the apps to use with the photos. You get a better camera. You get more shots from the battery. You can handle the app processing on a more suited form factor: the phone.
Considering what the Lumia is, a smartphone, it's biting right at the heel of the s120, by all accounts, a very good point & shoot.
The difference in IQ is noticeable but still close enough to be negligible for use. Meaning, when the quality is so nearly even, there's a good argument for only just really needing to carry the lumia about with you.