Thanks for the article Barney. It gives us an idea what to expect and why you're excited about it - an understanding that could be difficult to glean from a standard announcement and a preview alone.
Now that we have the 08 wide and the 06 lenses it puts a little different perspective on this camera. The IQ is very good on both of these, as it is with the 01 prime. This shows (once again) the strength of an ILC, and the camera covers the whole range with nice IQ. These give it an advantage over most of the cameras mentioned as comparisons in the review, and over all of them (and any other smallish ILCs I can think of) in the wide area.
So while the compared cameras may have looked better at the time of the review, over time the Q reveals itself to be a system which keeps getting better.
BTW, DPR, could you please re-do the Studio Scenes with the 01 lens? It (as well as the 06 and 08) are SO much better in IQ than the 02 zoom (especially considering the level of detail people will look at with the studio shots)!
pgphoto_ca: Be carefull....it's not a f2.8-f4 with this sensor (2.7x crop)....it's f5.6-f8 or more.......the crop factor need also to be apply to the aperture :)
A real 400mm f4...is much bigger ! :)
It's important to talk about the true aperture (not just the "equivalent" DOF aperture) because of the light gathering ability. It gives an advantage in faster shutter speeds, as others have mentioned. But then you also have to consider the fact that the sensor noise is much greater at higher ISOs than a DSLR (just look at the RAW examples in the Studio Scene), which offsets this advantage. So in the end you have to weigh all these factors.
Nevertheless, the focal length range and relatively high image quality you can get (in good light) with such a lightweight, affordable package is still impressive.
B1ackhat: Well accurate color is a lost cause with either camera, so that's a wash. The better sensor is almost inevitably going to be found in the Sony. Panasonic, however, is (imho) a far better camera maker. And that price is very reasonable!
If you *really* care about color that much you shouldn't mind shooting in RAW, so you can just get an editor with a good color profile, or create your own.
Also, I don't know why you'd assume the Sony sensor would be better. A quick glance at the Studio Scene in the preview suggests that both the sensor and the lens may be better (in the Panasonic).
EthanP99: Just so we're clear, f4 is now considered "fast lens" ?
Did we mention that it has a 1" sensor? Makes a difference in the lens design.
photoguy622: Those pictures are atrocious. I thought the Olympus was bad at detail retention, the Nikon is even worse.
"My Canon A570 FROM MANY YEARS AGO ..."
I rest my case.
peevee1: "it offers a 24-120mm equiv. lens, ... Among its peers it offers the widest lens"
Olympus TG-850 is 21mm at the wide end. With tilting screen, I think it is the most suitable for snorkeling, even more so than their flagship TG-3.
Has the article been changed, because it says "Among nearly all of its peers ...?"
I'm pretty sure your blind grandmother couldn't care less.
But I suspect your grandmother with good vision (perhaps wearing glasses) would say it's impressive how good it looks - "even close up." "It never looked this good in 4x6 (or rather 3 1/2 x5) prints!" Perhaps the blindness of a child of the digital age is at play.
The bottom line is the Olympus and Ricoh have the better lens. Then just choose which features and JPEG engine you want. The Nikon lens isn't performing well wide open - quite noticeable near the borders. The Canon lens is so much slower I'm not sure it's even a fair comparison - they're apparently embarrassed to even advertise their lens speed!
splendic: No examples of the INSANE MACRO this cam is supposed to be able to do?
Here's the only example I could find in a quick search: http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/olympus-tg-3/YP5150135.HTM
That's a cool option too - I didn't know about that. Too bad it's out of stock at 2 of the 3 top US retailers right now - better to have it built in, I imagine. I wonder which one works better - aside from "the one you have with you!"
Hopefully DPR will get a LG-1 and test macro flash on both of these cameras!
peevee1: And... nobody cared.
"Identical to its WG-4 GPS sibling in almost every way"
Don't forget it is identical to WG-3 in every way. :)
He duplicated a lot of the scenes on each camera, so I think that's fine.
Jarola: I hope you also took photos of your vacation with a real camera....the quality of this camera is just terrrrible.
What's wrong with vacation-looking photos when you're on Vacation!?
Or maybe some do.
You can't directly compare it, since the same photo wasn't taken with the other cameras, but photo #6 in the gallery (inside the library) is probably the most interesting picture in all the galleries so far.
The expectations of digital photographers today is astounding - Astounding!
Little camera, little lens, little sensor, little JPEG files, little price tag, little sense in the evaluation.
You have to be pixel peeping at 100% and expecting perfect results. Don't expect the same level of detail as RAW files from $1000+ equipment.
oselimg: Oh dear!!! All the underwater photographs were taken on short telephoto setting. Reveal the name of the photographer please. Couldn't have someone from Dpreview at least tell the "photographer" that underwater photography is very much prone to haze if telephoto lens is used? As if someone tried deliberately to make pictures look bad.
Blame the photographer - it couldn't be the camera! Indeed, Jeff must have suddenly gained competence when he used the other three cameras, right?
In fact, this probably has more to do with Canon's tendency to saturate the colors less - supposedly for a more "natural" look - where photos look more like they were all taken at noon in summer. The effect underwater with tropical fish just isn't very good.
Flying Snail: D30 ? Sounds like an old Nikon entry-level DSLR.
That was my first thought when I saw the post, Richard - I actually wondered if it WAS about the old camera, even though that didn't make sense!
sderdiarian: The Ricoh looks the best for above water scenes, even if a bit punchy and some magenta cast, while the Olympus looks best for under water. The Nikon's in the running, the Canon disappointing. And, yes Ben, totally subjective!
It would be helpful to have some portraits included for a more rounded sampling of each camera's capabilities, and Splendic, thanks for the link to theTG3 macro shot.
On MP, I agree it's a shame all 4 companies have gone to 16 MP when 12 MP would serve these p&S small sensored cameras better.
I agree with this general assessment, although I'd say underwater is where the Canon really falls short - not so much on top. It's pretty amusing how in the Canon comments section the photographer gets blamed!
And the WG-4 might be even better, considering it has the same lens and a built-in macro "ring light" flash.
DStudio: So far no comments about the gravity of the situation - just cynicism, attempts to redefine terms, etc.
I visited Hiroshima and the museum and monuments over five years ago. It was good to see it, but also a difficult experience. I imagine these photos would have a similar affect.
It's hard to describe, but it was sobering. It was the first time I can remember wanting to leave a museum before I had to.
I'd also researched the bombing before going to get a better understanding of the situation.
After much thought I think I know how to summarize it. As you learn the details they reinforce an understanding that the bombing was necessary, while simultaneously you're deeply experiencing the horrors of it. Emotionally it's impossible to reconcile the two.
And then you learn that there were many genuine humanitarian considerations that were followed (e.g. inhumane military torture methods were believed to be developed there; many of the children had already left the city for safety), which is good, but you're immediately faced again with the facts of how horrifying the bombing was for those in the city, and you still can't reconcile it.
Furthermore the area and nearby Miyajima is beautiful, while imagining the bombing just seems so awful!
So far no comments about the gravity of the situation - just cynicism, attempts to redefine terms, etc.
The problem is it sounds like a stupid buy even for those who can afford it.