Jim Salvas: Following the enthusiastic reviews on DPReview and the user reports in the forums i will be buying an EM-1 outfit in January to replace my D300 and its big bag of lenses. The only reason for the delay is that I will receive about $4,000 from an investment in early January, all of which will go toward the new outfit.
For the next month, I expect to go through the tradeoff comparisons, figuring out how best to allocate that money on lenses and other accessories.
One thing I'm afraid to leave behind is the excellent Nikon flash system, as my SB800 and SB600 have been responsible for some of my best images over the last four years. I am a big believer in creating my own light, but I see very little in the Olympus reviews or user reports about the flash system. Will I be disappointed?
You might be disappointed. I've not used the Nikon flash system but by reputation it's the best going. I find rc flash mode with the Oly system generally satisfactory but it sometimes misses badly. I know there are some debates on the forums but many of us find the system tends to underexpose in TTL mode. Seems to really want to protect highlights. Slave and manual flash work as expected. I love the system but I think you'll have some adjustments coming from the Nikon system.
photo nuts: There seems to be a massive push by DPReview to promote mirrorless cameras. Just saying. :)
well there's lots of subjectivity. That's what I see when I really try to compare. But I tire of the "almost as good as APS- C was a decade ago" kind of response. The technical IQ of all these cameras is amazing. Mostly, real image quality is far more limited by operator skills. And I know that's true about my photography.
My old eyes see the IQ of current Nikon APS-C sensors as class leading. But they also see the current sensors used by Olympus as better than any current Cannon APS-C camera. All of these cameras can make stunning images. Current m43 cameras would kill any 2004 APS-C camera, and probably any 2004 FF camera in terms of what folks mean by IQ.
rbarbara139: Question: On 4/3 I'm on the outside looking in but want to switch over. . Thoughts on the the E-M1 vs the E-M5?In light of the cost difference would the extra money be spent on lens?
Hard to say, value is in the pocket book of the buyer. I've not touched an EM1 but have an EM5. My take is the E-M1 has largely fixed most of the niggles of the first generation E-M5 and added some new features. The EVF is reputed to be much better, more controls, 1/8000 second shutter, IBIS is reputedly improved over the already very good IBIS in the M5. I have the grip for the EM5 and find that really improves handling, but it also bridges the cost gap. OTOH, without the grip the EM5 is certainly smaller. I really like the E-M5 and probably won't upgrade (I say knowing I'll get GAS). Unless the money difference really matters I'd probably go for the E-M1. Though investing in good lenses is always a good investment. In the short run, I'd rather have the E-M5 with good glass than the E-M1 with the basic kit lens. Just some thoughts.
thx1138: i had zero interest in the Nikon mirrorless system until today. This is a master stroke and I can't wait to see how it performs. Just in time for our summer.
This interests me too. I do quite a bit of kayaking. None of the water proof P & S cameras currently available offer very good IQ. This I could strap around my neck and leave it out without worry. I'm at least going to give this a more in depth look.
ImagesInstyle: Incredible how all this social media, and blogs commenting has taken photography from an art form, to a worthless political areana!.
you can fight back and forth to your fingers hurt from typing, but photography, no matter what camera you use, will always be aboutcapturing the moment...wether in manual (which how photography began)or auto focus mode...Period..go shoot, and STFU..
Agree completely. Using an analogy, if the comments on new camera releases were pixels, we'd be seeing a whole lot of noise and not much signal.
Laagwater: Like the EM-1 but maybe a little expensive at this price. Just checked the Image quality-tab (page 9) and when i compare Raw quality to every other camera (also Em5) The photo's look way to red imho. You can see that very clear with the face of the man on the right side. (the bold one). Or is it me?
I think if you compare it to high end APS-C bodies it's pretty comparable. It's a magnesium weather sealed body, shoots up to 10 frames / second, has lots of external controls and is highly customizable, etc. It's a pretty high end body.
neo_nights: That seems MUCH better. But..... what about those who didn't own a CS3 (or higher) versions? Should we get stuck with the old, outrageous price?
I'd consider this though I've never owned any version of PS so... And will the contract be limited to the current version of LR and CS or will upgrade's be included.
At least there's consensus.
jakeman: I don't see how anyone would buy this for $3000 instead of getting the X-E1 with the much faster zoom for $1000. The Leica brand has a lot of followers but they're slowly destroying their reputation with way overpriced average cameras...
I don't have a dog in this fight and I don't care what anyone uses for cameras. I know Leica makes terrific lenses and I know the 35mm film cameras were true workhorses that were really reliable tools for photojournalists, but IMO people are paying for the name and the image. It's kind of like a Rolex watch -- most of the appeal is the status the brand confers.
I find the sweeping pre-release evaluations of cameras very interesting. Panasonic has chosen to mate a relatively small sensor with a comparatively long but slow aperture lens in a small format camera. A bigger sensor means a bigger lens (assuming the same equivalent focal length and aperture). A faster lens means also means a larger lens. Even the lens in the LX7 seems considerably larger, by comparison. A 1" sensor with a long throw fast aperture telephoto ain't' going to fit in your pocket. And add a high resolution evf? Camera design requires compromises. There are many cameras with compromises I can't live. But that doesn't make them awful, or horrible, or ... Indeed, they may be great tools for someone else. I shoot m43 and have an LX5 for my pocket camera. The LX5 is really a bit too big for much of what I want a compact camera. I'll wait till we see some reviews but this looks like it might be a very good tool for what I need.
88SAL: I wonder if the 4/3 sensor could be introduced into compacts. its cetaintly not APS-C sized but with that being said look at the large sensor SonyRX100 - it is reatively compact while offering great performance. Im sure readers could agree that a 4/3 sensor with some compact optics, a 12-50 f2 (remember 2x crop) lens or something similar might offer a compelling compact product, especially if its under $400USD. We dont need a compact zoom camera that is a brick like the RX1 or X100 by Fuji for an occasional use performance compact. (dont get me wrong, lovely cameras, awesome cameras - but think smaller).
I think optics kind of becomes the limiting factor with sensor size. The RX100 looks like a great compact camera. But the lens, which is pretty fast at the wide end, is pretty slow at the long end. By comparison, the Panny LX7 which has a much smaller sensor has a much faster lens. And the sensor in the RX100 is considerably smaller than a 43 sensor. Someone might be able to create some kind of folded optics (like you find in some of the all weather cameras) that would make this doable, but my impression is that those kinds of lenses suffer poorer IQ. Physics just imposes some constraints on camera design.
In the interest of disclosure I'm not a Canon owner, but I'm not a brand basher. My view is that while it's a very extensive system with many terrific lenses and accessories, Canon as a company has been extremely conservative in terms of camera technology and innovation. I was really interested in what the EOS-M would bring to the ILC table. And it just seemed like a very under-specked camera. Except for a larger sensor it was basically specked like a first generation m43. The APS-C sensor technology has not really kept pace with those being produced by Sony and except for releasing updated Rebels (most small updates) it's been a long time since there has been a new APS-C sensor camera. I do think APS-C SLRs are getting squeezed by lots of very good, smaller, and lighter ILCs and by increasingly affordable FF cameras. The new 6D looks like a pretty interesting camera.
g7star: Everyone's basically saying Olympus needs Sony sensor(or tight body), and Sony needs Olympus lens. Hopefully they come out with one sometime soon.
It's not just price. The larger the sensor the larger the front lens, all else being equal. A faster lens on the RX100 will require a larger lens.
Wow, what vitriol is expressed in these posts. I know there are many exceptions but the overall tone is really disconcerting.
webneep: Merry Christmas! Great to see little Olympus do so well. I voted for the RX100 as I have one (and a D800), but the mere fact that it fits in my shirt pocket and produces stunning images makes it my favourite. The D800 is great and I love the amazing detail it captures, but it means I have to carry a heavy backpack with huge lenses to get the quality results.
One knew a poll on camera of the year would bring out the fairness in folks. I have an E-M5. I think it's a great camera, FOR ME. I'd love a D800 in addition. But I know the size and weight of the camera and a lens or two would often make me leave it in the trunk or at home for the kind of shooting I do. I'm very interested in the RX100. They are all great cameras. None are perfect. They all have compromises. But they are different and very useful tools.
Tape5: How about a poll that asks two questions from the participants:
What is your favourite current camera that you are using?
What would you like to swap it with if cost was not an issue? and to take three choices here not one.
The results can be tabulated in interesting ways.
I'm using the E-M5 and and I'm really happy with it. There are a few things I'd change, but it works great for me. But the context is I often toss it and a lens in a day pack. I use it for travel. I carry it walking around on streets. The size, weight, and relative unobtrusiveness are huge factors for me. I wouldn't trade it for any camera currently available. If money were not object I'd have a full frame camera, probably a D800. But it would be in addition to rather instead of the E-M5. I just know a FF camera would too often get left at home or in the trunk for the kind of stuff I want to do.
showmeyourpics: Here comes the inevitable question: best for what? The Canon 5D Mark III is great for action, the Nikon D800/E is superior for studio work and extreme enlargements, and the Olympus OM-D EM-5 has the most awkward name ... kidding, the EM-5 is an absolute masterpiece for people who need tough but extremely portable equipment. As long as you judge these cameras for what they do best, there isn't a single lousy one on this list. My heart goes to the EM-5 (with the new f/2.8 Panasonic zooms and the Leica 45mm macro lenses, yeah!) because I am a Nature photographer, I don't want to spend the money for Nikon or Canon lenses, and I do not want to schlep around two full frame bodies (no-one talks about it but you always travel with a spare body when the shoot is important). The cheerful conclusion is that most of today's digital cameras are much better than most photographers will ever be able to appreciate.
I always think the best for what question is the question to answer. What's best for my needs may not work for someone else at all. I do tire of the brand/camera bashing that too often goes on in these forums. Cameras are tools. We have a ton of great cameras from which to choose. Choose the right tool.
KZMike: OKAY. . . In about two weeks I'm upgrading to a 4/3's system, my question is. . . do both Pany's and Oly's Lenses have full capabilities on each others bodies. Don't know if I phased the question correctly or not, but need some help on figuring out what lens I want to start with. . . a short zoom for starters.
I'd add that Panasonic corrects CA in camera. In some lighting conditions you'll get some CA when using Olympus bodies. That seems to really bother some people but I can almost never notice it with PL25 and I've used the 12-35. If you shoot raw it can easily be corrected in light room. The 7-14 seems to be very prone to bad flare on the E-M5, and this seems specific to the E-M5 and not other Olympus bodies. The PL 25 has some rattlesnake sounds for some folks on Olympus bodies (I hear it occasionally but still really like the combination. But in general they work well together.
gsum: There's no mention in this review of whether Panasonic have fixed the problems that plagued the LX5. Whilst the image quality, lens, build and macro capabilities of the LX5 were absolutely superb, the camera was loaded with useless gimmicks such as scene selections, face recognition etc. The result was that the LX5 had too many controls for such a small body. In particular, the thumbwheel was a complete nightmare as it was too easy to accidentally press the wheel whilst rotating it, resulting in an unwanted selection.For their 'enthusiast compacts' Panasonic really need to get down to the basics of what photography is about rather than producing techno toys. I hope that they've done that with the LX7 but somehow doubt it.In their reviews, DPReview should mark down cameras that are laden with useless features.
Of course, as soon as you leave any of those "features" off some folks will wail and bark at the moon about how the camera doesn't have this, that, or the other thing. I never use scene modes, but try marketing a camera that doesn't have those kinds of features.