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Olympus PEN E-P5 review - just how mighty is the latest PEN?

By dpreview staff on Oct 3, 2013 at 22:44 GMT
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We've been shooting with the Olympus PEN E-P5 for some months now and have now completed our review. The arrival of the E-M1 may have grabbed the limelight in recent weeks but the latest PEN deserves its share of the attention. Although it continues the classic PEN look, it shares most of its specifications with the E-M5, which should make it pretty competitive - but what's it like to use?

And, just as importantly, what's all this talk about 'shutter shock'?

117
I own it
53
I want it
10
I had it
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Comments

Total comments: 415
123
olypan
By olypan (6 months ago)

Good old DPR. Praise the non Canikon before slipping in the coup de gras. Pentax, Panasonic, Fuji, Olympus..... and on it goes.

1 upvote
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

So it couldn't be the case that these brands, which are trying something new, haven't yet ironed-out all the glitches, the way that companies taking a more conservative, iterative have?

How does that theory fit with our E-M5 review, by the way?

2 upvotes
Jinks81
By Jinks81 (6 months ago)

How come Fuji cameras are the only ones with practically no chroma noise in RAW?

0 upvotes
Najinsky
By Najinsky (6 months ago)

Either they changed physics or remove it during processing

0 upvotes
Jinks81
By Jinks81 (6 months ago)

I thought an obvious tweak like this usually gets criticized. One example is Nikon's noise reduction practice (found it in wiki on RAW files). I heard nothing but praise about Fuji lately. How come Fuji is getting pretty much zero criticism for this?

0 upvotes
Andy Westlake
By Andy Westlake (6 months ago)

In every review of every Fujifilm X-Trans camera we point out that the demosaicing process essentially includes noise reduction.

1 upvote
KW Phua
By KW Phua (6 months ago)

Nowadays, many manufacturers cheat dxo with half cook raw. So I rather check the picture and even compare the JPEG. If JPEG can be good also mean the actual quality of the raw, indirectly.

1 upvote
M Jesper
By M Jesper (6 months ago)

The difference is that x-trans is a hardware feature. Essentially the same as a OLPF, but with additional qualities (good and bad). We all know the bayer pattern gives moiré, but that magically disappears with a OLPF filter ? Well then they cooked it didn't they ! Same difference.

0 upvotes
Sergey Borachev
By Sergey Borachev (6 months ago)

Olympus should have a new optional exposure setting in the menu of all its cameras, i.e."Avoid shutter speeds from 1/100 to 1/200 sec", for use at those times when critical sharpness is important. When selected, the camera will automatically adjust other settings to avoid those shutter speeds or at lease give a flashing warning.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Sergey Borachev
By Sergey Borachev (6 months ago)

This camera should not have been made, now that a better top camera, the E-M5 has already been on the market. Olympus should just update the E-M5 and forget this E-P5. It is too expensive but lacks an EVF. Once the real E-M5 replacement appears in a few months, with a new sensor, this camera will be left on the shelves, if not already.

(The E-M1 is a different camera for 43 users and those with special needs.) There is simply no room between the E-M5 or its replacement and the E-PL5 to slot in this E-P5.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Najinsky
By Najinsky (6 months ago)

I disagree Sergey. The PL and PM series have stripped down features to keep the cost and size down. The P series is full featured without going to an SLR style body.

While I personally prefer SLR style, I know a lot of people for whom the P is their ideal choice, and I don't see why they should be left out just because of my preferences.

Celebrate the difference!

3 upvotes
Najinsky
By Najinsky (6 months ago)

Image Shake / Shutter Shock.

I've had the EM-5 for over a year now and it's a fantastic balance between size and performance. Shutter shock was also a widely discussed topic when the EM-5 came out.

The 'fix' on the EM-5 is to engage Anti-Shock from custom menu 'E'. I use the fastest setting of 1/8s (shame there isn't a faster setting of say 1/32s) which essentially introduces a 1/8s delay to the shutter.

I was concerned about this delay but after a year of shooting, it's truly a non issue for me. Where split-second timing is critical, I use continuous drive anyway to capture 3/6 frames per second.

In rare cases where single frame and split-second timing is needed, ISO 400 or 800 give great IQ.

I suspect the reason it's a little more prevalent on the P5 is due to the new ISO 100 setting, leading to lower shutter speeds.

In short, if you wan't the performance/size benefits, don't let shutter-shock put you off. All cameras have compromises, and this issue is an easy work-around.

7 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (6 months ago)

I trust Oly engineers they should believe that the shock will last longer than 1/32s to harm the image.

on the other hand, they also tell us that it's a serious problem and they cannot solve it with their 5-axis image stabilizer.

btw, I think 9 fps burst of 3 shots will do the job better. the second shot will be fired at the same time while you have the first shot to catch the moment.

Comment edited 9 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
bluevellet
By bluevellet (6 months ago)

Wow, finally the review is done.

Essentially, the camera is similar to the E-P3 but with updated tech (which DPR very much likes) and shutter shock (DPR no likey). I don't think I've ever experienced shutter shock on Oly cameras, but I'll take DPR's word for it.

I'm still surprised the camera was rated as high as it did considering how relatively low past Pen models were rated before.

I was considering the E-P5, but I think the E-M1 tickles more my fancy for essentially the same money (if you consider the E-P5-17mm-VF4 package deal). I'll probably wait for the next-gen for a smaller, lower cost model as an altertive (something like like an E-PL7). Always nice to have options though.

FF NEX is just around the corner but the heavily rumored high price of admission and slow primes make it less appealing to me. I'd rather get a D600 or a A99 for the money with some cheap f1.8 primes.

2 upvotes
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

true, there are a lot of options. A A99 would not be in my scrapbook though. it is soo huge and bulky!

here is a comparison with 35mm lenses:
http://camerasize.com/compact/#377.60,459.383,ha,t

0 upvotes
bluevellet
By bluevellet (6 months ago)

All FF cameras are huge and bulky. The size differences between brands and models are only a matter of degrees. :)

1 upvote
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

not all, my friend.
take the RX1, for example.
or, by margin, the leica models (they are huge to some, but not bulky)
or wait for the new sony FF models...

0 upvotes
Dimitris Servis
By Dimitris Servis (6 months ago)

"...isn't correctly compensating for the initial low frequency, high amplitude motion of the initial shutter press..."

Sorry but technically this is only possible if you buy a tripod or don't forget to take your medication ;-P

Nice review overall, for an excellent camera. I have an E-PL5 and indeed its incredible advantage over APS-C and larger, that you can carry them in your bag or coat pocket, is slightly counterbalanced by the fact that these cameras are mode difficult to hold steady. The lack of a viewfinder is not a problem. They are just ultralight. I usually use speeds twice the focal length to compensate for that and often use the touch screen to shoot instead of the shutter button.

0 upvotes
Jorginho
By Jorginho (6 months ago)

Well. I just returned from Scotland and went out a lot into the highlands. I came across quite a few blurred images on the last day of my shooting. Wondered what it was. Of all the pics of some I remembered the shutterspeed. So when I read "1/160 s" I checked because I was sure that was the setting. And it was...Hmmm...I need to remember that. Wonder if E-M1 has the same problem...

I also feel that such a cam at that price really cannot afford such a mistake. Olympus needs to correct it. And if it existed since the E-P1 than I am disappointed in them for not correcting this.

5 upvotes
tinternaut
By tinternaut (6 months ago)

Nice review. The shutter shock is something I've only recently started believing in (had put it down to hysteria, on the hysteria prone Micro Four Thirds forum) as I've found I sometimes get sharper images from my E-PM2 if I leave IS switched off (and goodness, when you can get the sharpest image the 45 can deliver, it's nice).

I'm surprised shutter shock seems to occur with the best IBIS Olympus currently offers though!

3 upvotes
edu T
By edu T (6 months ago)

Loved the opening sentence, "been shooting for SOME MONTHS and have NOW completed the review."
(sorry, I know and appreciate how diligent you dpr guys are, but can't help but chuckle at it...)

1 upvote
ijustloveshooting
By ijustloveshooting (6 months ago)

sensor is dead...aps-c the least, rules!

0 upvotes
olypan
By olypan (6 months ago)

Brain dead.

7 upvotes
M Jesper
By M Jesper (6 months ago)

The hell, random words ?

2 upvotes
SETI
By SETI (6 months ago)

lens is alive... full-frame the first, google!

2 upvotes
ReallyMadRob
By ReallyMadRob (6 months ago)

There's a few odd bits in here really. I've looked back at the shots I've taken with this - for review - and I'm not seeing unaccountable blur at mid speeds. A lot of that was hand held macro and it just isn't manifesting as a persistent problem.

If I did have a gripe it would be that the Wifi features are pretty basic, and those are praised. And there's the tired old complaint about menus... too much control?

1 upvote
DELETED88781
By DELETED88781 (6 months ago)

Its over! dead
They need to develop FF based on that tech

Comment edited 19 seconds after posting
1 upvote
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

See Sony A99? D600?

5 upvotes
yabokkie
By yabokkie (6 months ago)

the image quality at base ISO is not too bad.
it's more an issue of small aperture lenses.

0 upvotes
rpm40
By rpm40 (6 months ago)

Not everybody wants big and bulky FF. My m4/3 with 20mm 1.7 or 45mm 1.8 gives me all the image quality I need and I barely feel it when I bring it along.

6 upvotes
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

http://camerasize.com/compact/#377.60,459.383,ha,t

sony a99 vs p5 with 35mm FOV

0 upvotes
cadet stimpy
By cadet stimpy (6 months ago)

Since 2010 I've taken a guestimated 50,000+ shots on various E-P1, E-PM2, EM-5 and EP-5 and never noticed shutter shock, though I only use primes and never pixel peep. I find the IBIS excellent for handheld slow exposures. I have gripes about the e-p5 but shutter shock isn't one of them...

Comment edited 34 seconds after posting
6 upvotes
oluv
By oluv (6 months ago)

the E-P1, E-PL1, E-PL2, E-PL3 all suffered from this. I noticed that already with the first shots i took. I stopped my interest in Olympus cameras since then.

2 upvotes
rpm40
By rpm40 (6 months ago)

It doesn't happen all the time, but it's definitely an issue. I've seen it with my e-pl1.

2 upvotes
Mike99999
By Mike99999 (6 months ago)

I've noticed it when I attach a non-Olympus lens to the camera and forget to enter the correct focal length.

When the lens is configured correctly I've never ever seen this issue on any of my PENs.

0 upvotes
cadet stimpy
By cadet stimpy (6 months ago)

I'm not suggesting it never happens, but I've never noticed it.

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

I have to admit I am a bit surprised to learn it has the shutter shock. I have noticed this in my E-620 a long ago, but that is a completely different IBIS mechanism. The easiest fix on that (at least for the 620) would have been for Olympus to automatically disable IBIS at higher shutter speeds that don't really need IBIS (the problem in the 620).

Seems like the EM5 did not have that problem, so maybe it's a problem with the smaller size of the Pen? If the EM5 didn't have it, the EM1 shouldn't have it (good news).

1 upvote
pdelux
By pdelux (6 months ago)

Although Shutter Shock may also exist in the EP5 - DPR are referring to Camera shake coupled by in accurate IS compensation, some people are mistaking it for Shutter shock but perhaps what they are seeing is a result of both.

Shutter shock can be compensated with Anti Shock. Time Delay does not work for the affected Shutter speeds. Camerashake can be compensated with Time Delay.

1 upvote
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

Semantics aside, I am talking about what dpreview was referring to.

0 upvotes
YetiYeti
By YetiYeti (6 months ago)

I have also experienced IS problems with II. gen IS (E6-20 and PENs), exactly as described here. But with this III. gen IS - I have no experience with it and heard about problems for the first time.

0 upvotes
CollBaxter
By CollBaxter (6 months ago)

Howzit Ricardo .
It was my understanding that the E-620 and Pens use the same IBIS system. It was not as effective as the IBIS on the other Olympus DSLRS. I Own one (E-620) and its definitely one ore more stops behind the E-5/30.

0 upvotes
TN Args
By TN Args (6 months ago)

If it is due to pushing the shutter button and light body combination, then EVERY light camera will exhibit it with IS off. Surely this is not true????

And why didn't you test it using self timer shutter release? If it is due to pressing the shutter, this will eliminate it. DPREVIEW come on, you haven't checked this. How do you know it isn't poor shutter design?

5 upvotes
thecameraeye
By thecameraeye (6 months ago)

Shutter shock is a reality for every light camera with a mechanical focal plane shutter.

0 upvotes
TN Args
By TN Args (6 months ago)

Okay, then you are confirming that it is NOT due to pressing the shutter button and light body combination.

OTOH if it is due to the momentum of the mechanical shutter, why does it not persist at SLOWER shutter speeds?

1 upvote
CameraLabTester
By CameraLabTester (6 months ago)

Shutter shock?

Oh come on!

Get a leaf!

.

10 upvotes
jon404
By jon404 (6 months ago)

Elegant!

0 upvotes
Najinsky
By Najinsky (6 months ago)

Nice

0 upvotes
Walsh_uk
By Walsh_uk (6 months ago)

:D

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

"This is because the ISO Low and ISO 200 settings are derived from the same sensor amplification setting - ISO 200 images are exposed to less light, protecting highlights, compared to ISO 100. "

"The upshot of this is that the ISO Low shots include less highlight detail but with 'cleaner' shadows, while the ISO 200 shots strike the opposite balance."

A little credit would have been nice :-)

http://www.dpreview.com/forums/post/31918699

Back then I remember there was head scratching about that E-30. All right, partial jest, ;-) there's many sources for this probably at this point :-)

0 upvotes
HappyVan
By HappyVan (6 months ago)

Not good.

D5100 IQ and AF competitive with $999 EP5 (optional EVF) . The D5100 does 4 fps with 16 RAW buffer in continuous AF.

Canon 100D is actually 17g lighter and only 1.2 inches deeper.

0 upvotes
TN Args
By TN Args (6 months ago)

1.2 inches is a lot. Plus the extra lens size is a killer in terms of size comparisons.

Better to compare with the EOS M

1 upvote
rpm40
By rpm40 (6 months ago)

Compare the size of a system, and see where you end up- the lenses make a bigger difference. I carry my camera, 4 lenses, filters, spare battery and memory cards, and a mini tripod in a case too small for an slr body and kit lens.

1 upvote
HappyVan
By HappyVan (6 months ago)

Hi rpm40,

I use the Nikon One V1 as a small camera, Bet I can carry all that stuff in a smaller case than you?

For the serious stuff, I carry a D800 and lenses in a Kata DL80. You'll be surprised how much stuff you can squeeze into a compact bag.

Luv that shallow DOF. For me, that's progress from APSC.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
name here
By name here (6 months ago)

Latest Olympus cameras have an anti-shock setting deep in the menus. If you set it to 1/8s, the shutter shock problem is largely eliminated based on other web reviews. If you google it, you can find tests online showing even OMD EM5 is impacted by shutter shock, but the problem goes away if you set anti-shock = 1/8. The downside: This setting increases the shutter lag, so you'll have to tradeoff sharpness with a slight lag.

I think DPR needs to investigate this particular setting, and update the review if it changes any of the conclusions.

Comment edited 40 seconds after posting
10 upvotes
h2k
By h2k (6 months ago)

Thanks, very interesting and valid points here.

0 upvotes
thecameraeye
By thecameraeye (6 months ago)

I was just gonna say this. For most situations 1/8 antishock is hardly noticeable too. Very convenient feature. Most of the times when I want faster shutter response, I'm working with higher shutter speeds too(1/500 or so for action), so the shutter lag doesn't bother me.

1 upvote
SeeRoy
By SeeRoy (6 months ago)

FWIW, setting this value to 1/8 has greatly improved the number of sharp pix I'm getting from the EM5/100-300 combination - when shooting at the long end. I don't really understand why but it definitely helps. I also now shoot short bursts which gives a further improvement. I haven't attempted to analyse ho the a/s setting relates to shutter speed which I try to keep as high as I can with this lens, obviously.

0 upvotes
bcalkins
By bcalkins (6 months ago)

Even better, once you've enabled the anti-shock setting (in Menu group E) you can quickly use it or not from the main SCP in both single shot and self timer modes. I leave mine on 1/8s most of the time, unless I'm shooting action/kids.

1 upvote
pdelux
By pdelux (6 months ago)

I think there needs to be clarified the difference between shutter shock and camera shake.
- the act of Pressing the shutter button causing vibrations through the camera is more like camera shake, as the camera is now moving. More likely with smaller/lighter bodies. This is what DPR is talking about and it is reasonable to expect the IS system should be able to compensate for such movements. Tripods and other methods can compensate as well.

- shutter shock, on the other hand is demonstrable even on a tripod, and and only involves the sensor moving due to vibrations caused butt the curtain opening and closing. Shutter shock is not an IS issue, though the IS may make it worse, or may not compensate for it enough. The root issue is the curtain.
Turn on Anti SHOCK which introduces a small delay should work around this issue.

Comment edited 5 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
captura
By captura (6 months ago)

All true, but if Olympus would have bothered to add an electronic first curtain shutter like Sony does, there would be no shutter shock.

2 upvotes
pdelux
By pdelux (6 months ago)

True but it would not help the people who hold current olympus models.

I think also that Camera shake will often give a directional movement blur, where as Shutter Shock can often appear as softness in the entire image.

Although Shutter Shock may also exist in the EP5 - DPR are referring to Camera shake coupled by in accurate IS compensation, some people are mistaking it for Shutter shock.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
mapgraphs
By mapgraphs (6 months ago)

I suspect part of the clue is that not everyone experiences "shutter shock" at certain shutter speeds. And the effect apparently is heavily dependent on lens used.

Light weight cameras with light weight lenses demand a deliberate shooting technique. Vibration from a shutter closing and opening sequence apparently only compounds poor technique. This is something that has been discussed quite a bit. And will probably continue to be.

0 upvotes
Hubertus Bigend
By Hubertus Bigend (6 months ago)

Interesting to see this shutter shock thing coming up again. I remember that there used to be similar reports in forums about Olympus' DSLRs, and I think it were especially the 1/8000s capable bodies which seemed to be affected (although my own E-30 never was, and I'm shooting for four and a half years now with IS turned on about 99,9% of the time).

I do understand the logic behind the "shutter button" explanation, but I still have some doubts, given that something similar has been sporadically observed even with the heaviest digital cameras Olympus ever made.

Did you contact Olympus about the issue? Any feedback yet?

And did you observe anything like that with the E-M1, too, which presumably employs the same shutter?

1 upvote
RichRMA
By RichRMA (6 months ago)

Knew it wasn't as good as the E-M5. I still think the images are less sharp out of camera.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

i don't see that

0 upvotes
SW Anderson
By SW Anderson (6 months ago)

I wonder if the Olympus Pen E-PL5 has the same problems. Unfortunately, it appears DPreview only does previews of E-PL models, not reviews.

2 upvotes
Jorginho
By Jorginho (6 months ago)

I am unsure but noted some of my pics I took on a holiday were unexplicably blurred. I went through them and compared it with other pics of the same cam. On a tripod and long exposures everything was fine. I have found that the blurred pics indeed were taken at the same shutterspeeds (1/100 to 1/200 s). So my guess is that EPL5 does have this problem too...

2 upvotes
thecameraeye
By thecameraeye (6 months ago)

Yep, same observation here. Beyond that shutter range my photographs were incredibly sharp. It's very easy to fix that using the Anti-shock feature though. I really wonder why there's no mention of it in the review.

0 upvotes
Elite83
By Elite83 (6 months ago)

It's a nice device, but I can't see spending that kind of money on an ILC that wasn't even APS-C.

1 upvote
waitformee
By waitformee (6 months ago)

A camera is not just about the sensor size.

12 upvotes
name here
By name here (6 months ago)

Also note that latest Oly sensors perform as well as Canon's APS-C sensors. There's virtually no advantage to [Canon] APS-C in terms of noise or dynamic range. Other brands' APS-C do a little better.

5 upvotes
Jorginho
By Jorginho (6 months ago)

Is the sensosize more important the the IQ? You'll be hard pushed to find any differences between this sensor and APS-c sensors.

0 upvotes
rpm40
By rpm40 (6 months ago)

I am actually coming to prefer the m4/3 sensor size. I can shoot wide open at f1.7 or 1.8 in lower light and still get enough depth of field, and I can shoot landscapes only stopped down to f 5.6-8.

On the other end of things, if I want to limit depth of field, the 45mm 1.8 or any longer lenses give enough control for portraits, etc. It is a nice middle ground.

The performance from the new sensors is definitely good enough. Give one a try.

Comment edited 26 seconds after posting
1 upvote
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

+1 rpm40

so many times i read about "shallow DOF", as if that is the holy grail in photography.
for me, DOF very often ruins tings.

though it's a thing, you can learn, many people are just overstrained.

one example, where a guy shot a em5 with a voigtlander lens mountet. here, the LENS was the main issue. but due to the shallow DOF, you hardly can see the lens details... fail for me

http://media.focoro.com/converted/reg/e2v/fc8ov4/8ow80og4g4/wronka-om_d_e_m5_with_voigtl_nder_nokton_17_5mm_f_0_95.jpeg

0 upvotes
iShootWideOpen
By iShootWideOpen (6 months ago)

Here's a camera review of all top of the line smartphones on the market by a top quality LA Times.

http://framework.latimes.com/2013/09/28/iphone-5s-camera-comparison-test/

Comment edited 24 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (6 months ago)

Find any banding boys?

0 upvotes
larrytusaz
By larrytusaz (6 months ago)

The shutter shock problem is one that people have been complaining about for a long time with Olympus models. The others without the 5-axis IBIS, on those IBIS sometimes can make images look WORSE if you don't turn it off. Others have complained of blurred images around the 1/100 second mark, which is a ridiculous thing to have happen, 1/100 second should be PLENTY fast enough to prevent hand-held blur unless you're shooting with longer lenses.

In fact I switched to Sony NEX largely for this very reason & in fact I never see this problem anymore since I did so.

If mirrorless is to be a viable SLR alternative, it's going to need to be able to work the same in such ways. If you can get away with 1/80 or 1/125 second hand-holding for portraits etc on an SLR, you should with mirrorless too, regardless of the differences in weight & how they're hold. Otherwise there's no point in having mirrorless at ALL.

2 upvotes
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (6 months ago)

Worth noting that Panasonic cameras also suffer from the shutter shock.

I can easily reproduce it on my GX7 at 100-150mm FLs (that's 200-300mm eq).

Sony NEX uses first curtain electronic shutter, which largely negates the shutter shock effect.

0 upvotes
mapgraphs
By mapgraphs (6 months ago)

Robin Wong's review of the ep5:

http://robinwong.blogspot.com/2013/06/olympus-pen-e-p5-review-street-shooting.html

See his Initial Thoughts article also:

http://robinwong.blogspot.com/2013/05/olympus-pen-e-p5-initial-thoughts-and.html

1 upvote
ivey3721
By ivey3721 (6 months ago)

I read somewhere that Robin Wong is Olympus' employee, isn't he?

1 upvote
white shadow
By white shadow (6 months ago)

He joined Olympus in Malaysia only about a month ago after he find his regular engineering job is becoming too taxing on him. He has to work about 12 hours a day very frequently to complete urgent project deadlines.

His E-P5 review was done before that. He uses many types of cameras including Sony. His blog is on photography in general. He is still working on his EM1 review for the moment.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

Yes he is, as he disclosed. @ White- he also disclosed he favored Olympus equipment (kudos to him on both disclosures) though he did attempt to portray himself as more objective than he was during the E-5 review. But that was then and this is now- still doesn't change the outcome, you need to weight the pluses and praises accordingly.

I am not saying his reviews are useless, they present a side of the camera that is very good to know, and he being a photographer shows real photography which I think it's great! But some things have to be weighted accordingly - that's all.

0 upvotes
TN Args
By TN Args (6 months ago)

Not one mention of the words shake or blur in relation to image quality.

0 upvotes
white shadow
By white shadow (6 months ago)

His joining Olympus Malaysia may be a good thing as he would be able to bring up complaints he encounter more effectively with Olympus Japan.

0 upvotes
white shadow
By white shadow (6 months ago)

@Raist3d

Most of us who use cameras has some preference of one over another. His happen to be Olympus. His reviews are not as comprehensive as we expected. We can always tell him that on his blog.

On the issue of not mentioning of the words shake or blur in relation to image quality it maybe that he didn't encounter such a problem. We can ask him this question too on his blog. I am equally interested to know.

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

@White - the issue is not that he can or can't have a preference. The issue is that if someone favors a brand heavily, you have to put a different weight to some of the things said. That's all.

Now that he is fully disclosed as an Olympus employee, you know he is paid to make the brand look good and promote the products. Kudos to him for disclosing it.

Once again, that doesn't mean his overviews of the product can't be valuable, but you bet a company employee reviewing the company's product you have to put some counter view or weight to some of the claims. That's pretty straightforward.

PS: I have told him myself what I have thought from time to time on each review. So that homework on my part is done, though a couple of times I didn't tell him the best way.

0 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

Noise is now on par with Canon APS-C (70D)

Impressive.

8 upvotes
abortabort
By abortabort (6 months ago)

Erm, it has been for a while, the sensor in the E-P5 has been used by Olympus for 18 months or so.

1 upvote
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

I guess I haven't been following closely, then. The 70D is new, however, so all the more impressive to match Canon's latest APS-C for noise with a smaller sensor.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

Yes but when people think good APS-C knowadays, they think Pentax/Nikon/Fuji, which is not Canon. Canon is clearly a bit behind the times here. The K-5 of over two years ago, still does better.

4 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

50% of ILC are still Canon, so it's relevant.

And while the Sony sensors have good low ISO shadow noise (and DR) compared to Canon, they don't beat Canon in high ISO. Compare this camera to the D7100 in the new Studio shots and there is no advantage to Nikon.

1 upvote
Jorginho
By Jorginho (6 months ago)

And all other things are better than that sensor.

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

Actually they do beat Canon at high ISO. A K-5 easily beats the Canon at high ISO, and so did the D7000 (same K-5 sensor).

It's not relevant because saying "we finally match current worst APS-C" doesn't mean much, particularly when the other option has been there for over two years now (and still is better than m43/rds)_.

1 upvote
zigi_S
By zigi_S (6 months ago)

Pentax uses in raw NR. And it looks bad.

0 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

A k-5 does not beat even a 60D at high ISO. It's the same sensor as the D7000.

0 upvotes
SHood
By SHood (6 months ago)

"shutter shock" is a problem with all mirrorless cameras. Smaller body is part of the problem but also due to the shutter requiring a close/open to start the exposure and then another close/open to end it. This quick double shutter action is different than DSLRs which just need to open to start the exposure and then close to end it.

I have found with my GH3 that shooting at hi-speed continuous shooting does help as liveview is disabled so you don't have the double shutter action except to start the first image and end the last image in the sequence. The electronic shutter on Panasonic bodies also helps but is limited.

The new 1/8000s shutter speed on the E-P5 and E-M1 has probably made it even worse as the shutter is now designed to move even faster. Only the global shutter will totally eradicate this.

0 upvotes
Robert Morris
By Robert Morris (6 months ago)

So you are saying that this also happens with Sony, Fujifilm, Samsung, Pentax, Canon, Ricoh, and Nikon mirror-less cameras also? I have not read anything in any of the reviews for those cameras about this major problem.

1 upvote
SHood
By SHood (6 months ago)

All prior m43 bodies had the issue as well and nothing was said in a review until now.

2 upvotes
jonikon
By jonikon (6 months ago)

I have never experienced shutter shock with my Nikon V1, so no, it is not a problem with all mirrorless cameras. Maybe Olympus just can't get good engineers since they are having financial problems?

1 upvote
John Driggers
By John Driggers (6 months ago)

RE: V1-Have you been using the mechanical shutter or the electronic shutter? I've got two V1s and shutter shock is demonstrable with the mechanical shutter--I always use the electronic shutter. I pick up my Panasonic GX7 in a couple of days. The electronic shutter was one of the reasons I selected it and chose to sell my OMD EM5.

Comment edited 37 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Gaëtan Lehmann
By Gaëtan Lehmann (6 months ago)

Not every mirrorless camera has this double mechanical shutter action per shot. The NEX (and the SLT, though not exactly mirrorless) cameras have a first electronic curtain that avoids that.
See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tpYDet-aUs
This may also be the case for other makers.
The GX7 also has a full electronic shutter mode but it limits the maximum shutter speed, is not usable with the flash, and shows rolling shutter deformations...

2 upvotes
rrr_hhh
By rrr_hhh (6 months ago)

Most other makers don't have an IBIS. I guess this is adding to the problem, since the sensor can move more easily when the shutter is operating

0 upvotes
SHood
By SHood (6 months ago)

IBIS is not the main issue. Both Panasonic and Olympus bodies share this issue equally.

0 upvotes
deleted-13120401
By deleted-13120401 (6 months ago)

Thanks for the good work. I'm looking forward to being able to compare the amazing DR performance on p17 with the latest Panasonic when you finish with that. Yours is my favourite DR comparison for the richness and succinctness of info... other websites don't go into as much detail or exclude certain brands.

1 upvote
CJ Lan
By CJ Lan (6 months ago)

I dislike this new studio setting. I really have hard time differentiating the quality of image between different cameras. Plus, it defeats the opportunity for me to make comparison with previous cameras. Why does dpreview make such a change?

2 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

There were several reasons behind the change. You can read about them and about the things we have tried to add with the new scene.

An introduction to our new studio scene

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

I love that it has a true low light setting to show more of a "real world" high ISO test.

1 upvote
rrr_hhh
By rrr_hhh (6 months ago)

I don't like the new studio setting either : I understand the need to change, but I don't appreciate the new setting, because everything is so scattered over the frame and it is difficult to pick the right place to look for sharpness.
I wonder why the choose to replace the 50mm F2 with the 45mm F1.8 : that lens is less sharp than the macro and not so good to judge the sensor capabilities.

0 upvotes
Digitall
By Digitall (6 months ago)

I still think that the DPreview should have the category of bronze medals in their options when reviewing a camera, and I'm not even talking about this camera specifically that personally quite like the camera, but as far concesual more logically and not radical assignment medals. Even in the Olympic Games there is always place for the bronze medal...

3 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

Everybody has to be a winner, eh?

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

Funny thing: dpreview USED to have bronze awards :-) So they decided to remove them. They may have had a good reason for doing so.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 33 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Richard Murdey
By Richard Murdey (6 months ago)

This is the most "PEN-looking" of the digital PEN series yet. Pity the lenses don't really match.

1 upvote
Anfy
By Anfy (6 months ago)

Well, you can always mount - like I do on my other m4/3 cameras - some PEN F/FT lenses, like the 38mm f/1.8, 40mm f/1.4, 42mm f/1.2 or the lovely 38mm f/2.8 pancake!

0 upvotes
micksh6
By micksh6 (6 months ago)

There have been numerous reports about shutter shock (what you call camera/image shake) on E-M5 and other Pens at DPR m4/3 forum.
The shutter shock effect depends on camera body, lens and operator, you were just lucky that you didn't see it on E-M5 (and 17mm F1.8 wasn't available then).

You are wrong that it's caused by shutter button. It's easy to verify this - set up 2 second auto-timer and compare results. I don't see that you did this.
Most people use anti-shock setting - it's more effective than timer. But the shock is caused by shutter curtain movement and it may exist on tripod with timer or remote release.

6 upvotes
Andy Westlake
By Andy Westlake (6 months ago)

We shot handheld using the touch shutter and didn't see this particular shake pattern. We shot with the camera on a tripod without self-timer and didn't see this particular shake pattern. I don't see why you'd think it would come back again, if we turned the timer on.

3 upvotes
JohnAn
By JohnAn (6 months ago)

So, does the touchscreen feature involve a longer delay between the first closure of the shutter and the shutter opening? Does mounting the camera on a tripod affect the vibration? There are plenty of unknows, and I imagine the reviewers have thought about them and perhaps done unreported testing. Testing with anti-shock (if that's available) obviously would be of interest.

0 upvotes
micksh6
By micksh6 (6 months ago)

You wrote "lightweight cameras like the E-P5 are simply more prone to shake than heavier SLRs, and specifically to vertical movement just from pressing the shutter button"

I am saying that timer will eliminate shutter button movement but it will not get rid of shutter shock.
The shutter button may cause camera shake but generally it has very little to do with this if you press it carefully.

When you shoot using touch shutter you are holding camera differently. This affect how shock wave is distributed. Depending on operator this may either reduce or increase shutter shock effect. Many people see improvement when holding camera relaxed.

Of course tripod stabilizes camera. Check Anders W threads in m4/3 forum. He investigated shutter shock on E-M5.

5 upvotes
Andy Westlake
By Andy Westlake (6 months ago)

This is the E-P5, not the E-M5. It's a different camera with a different problem.

7 upvotes
ginsbu
By ginsbu (6 months ago)

From the description of your testing, I don't think you've established that. It all seems compatible with the shutter shock problem of the E-M5, where how the camera is held (including holding the camera differently when using the touch shutter release) can influence the appearance and degree of blurring. Testing using the self-timer (not anti-shock) while holding the camera in the same manner as has previously produced blurring should clarify the matter: if you still get blurring, it's the shutter itself — not pressing the shutter button — that's causing the problem (same as E-M5).

4 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

I have to say if holding the camera affects IBIS so much, that still reads to me like a problem, don't you think? Hell, you could say depending how you hold the camera affects how much blur you get- for ANY camera IBIS or not.

Comment edited 25 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
rrr_hhh
By rrr_hhh (6 months ago)

It is a problem of course, but a different one than DPreview review indicated.

0 upvotes
ginsbu
By ginsbu (6 months ago)

@Raist3d: The shutter shock issues with the E-M5 isn't (primarily) an IBIS issue, but an issue of the impact of the shutter itself: how you support the camera alters how the impact of the shutter closing then opening before exposure translates into camera motion and hence blurring. DPReview is claiming the E-P5 has a different problem caused by IBIS failing to counteract camera body motion introduced by pressing the shutter button, but I don't think they've conclusively established that.

0 upvotes
micksh6
By micksh6 (6 months ago)

2 Andy Westlake
I don't think your logic is consistent. After you said that "lightweight cameras like the E-P5 are simply more prone to shake", you can't ignore the fact that E-P5 weights exactly the same as E-M5, so, it's equivalent camera in your problem statement.

It's the same problem as was reported on all Oly cameras including E-M5, Panasonic cams with OIS lenses (14-42mm X PZ in particular) and also on GX7 with any lenses. I wonder how could you not know about this, you don't read your forums?

What is consistent is inconsistency - shutter shock depends on operator and tripod too much, also on body and lens, so it's too hard to come up with solution that's good to everybody.

Shutter shock can be defeated in many ways, but camera owners have to spend some time testing to figure out what way is the best for them. That is only if they see this. Many are not affected.

BTW, you have traces of shutter shock on your studio samples of E-M1. You didn't enable anti-shock, did you?

2 upvotes
reginalddwight
By reginalddwight (6 months ago)

I am surmising you received a defective production copy with the built-in image stabilization.

Did you contact Olympus for a replacement test sample?

0 upvotes
Andy Westlake
By Andy Westlake (6 months ago)

We've used about 5 samples of the E-P5 all told, and all show the same thing.

20 upvotes
Richard Murdey
By Richard Murdey (6 months ago)

Hopefully it is an adjustment that can be fixed by a firmware update.

0 upvotes
oluv
By oluv (6 months ago)

this problem occured since the E-P1 some years ago, and they still haven't fixed it. why do you think they would fix it with a firmware suddenly?

0 upvotes
Gesture
By Gesture (6 months ago)

I thought it was less costly to produce a camera without optical viewfinder and mirror box???

21 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

It probably is. What's that got to do with anything?

3 upvotes
jonikon
By jonikon (6 months ago)

A thousand dollar camera body and it doesn't come with a viewfinder? Really? So you have to buy the big ugly VF4 EVF separately for another $300 which makes the camera body $1300 and to top it off, it takes blurry pictures! Who in there right mind would buy the E-P5 when the OM-D E-M5 with an EVF and no blurry pictures can be had for around $900? With designs and marketing like this it is little wonder Olympus is in financial difficulties.

21 upvotes
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

Who in their right mind would take anyone seriously who couldn't even be bothered to learn the difference between "there" and "their"?

10 upvotes
sunhorse
By sunhorse (6 months ago)

@Mirrorless
Why not refute what jonikon wrote? Are his points valid? If not, then provide counter arguments.

Who would take ad hominem attackers seriously?

10 upvotes
Chris_in_Osaka
By Chris_in_Osaka (6 months ago)

Are you talking suggested retail prices? Which market?
Here in Japan, the E-P5 plus VF-4 and 17mm f1.8 is sold in a kit for ¥110,000, or about $1,100 (tax included). I think that is quite reasonable considering the lens alone is about $420 here (¥42,000).

1 upvote
lighthunter80
By lighthunter80 (6 months ago)

I got the kit with VF-4 and 17/1.8 and it was $1,499. I sold the 17 for $450 as I owned it already from my E-PL5. If you look at the kit this camera is kind of reasonably priced, especially if you are going to keep all components of the kit.

I had the VF-2 before and thought about selling the VF-4 at about $250 so the camera price would have dropped for me to $800 but then I started using the VF-4... I kept it and sold the VF-2 for $200 instead.

So overall the E-P5 is only overpriced a bit if you buy the body only.

1 upvote
Marty4650
By Marty4650 (6 months ago)

Saying something "isn't too overpriced" is really hollow praise.

These things shouldn't be overpriced at all. After all, they do have competition.

Should the EP5 body cost more than a Fuji X-E1? (which comes with both a lens and a viewfinder for $999). I don't think it should.

Should the EP5 body cost about the same as a Sony NEX7 body? I don't think it should.

Olympus certainly isn't offering a great value here when you need to spend $300 more to get an EVF, and at least $100 more to get any sort of lens.

But that is just my view. Obviously, Olympus has different ideas.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
tkbslc
By tkbslc (6 months ago)

This is like complaining that a Honda Civic can't fit your family of 7. Duh, that's how they designed it. It's not for you if you have a family of 7.

Incidentally, you CAN get a viewfinder for this camera, so maybe it is more like a car with an optional 3rd row.

1 upvote
ZAnton
By ZAnton (6 months ago)

I want to buy it for my wife. She doesn't need it, and without VF the camera is smaller.

0 upvotes
micksh6
By micksh6 (6 months ago)

Heck with EVF, this camera isn't for old skool, it's for growing generation. Smartphones don't have EVF, why should camera have one?

Built-in EVF uglified GX-7, NEX 6 and 7. These can't be put in small belt pouch anymore, EVF is protruding too much. Want EVF - get an optional one, seems like a logical modular concept.

0 upvotes
RStyga
By RStyga (6 months ago)

If Olympus 5-axis state of the art IS system cannot offer blur-free images in such speeds as 1/160s, then what sort of 5-axis state of the art IS system is it, really?? Are we sure it's not mirror vibration? :-)))

This is a major disappointment and I agree with the reviewer taking the gold award on account of that.

I hope a FW update would improve things...

Comment edited 3 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
15 upvotes
Richard Murdey
By Richard Murdey (6 months ago)

”then what sort of 5-axis state of the art IS system is it, really??”

One that clearly messed up the closed loop feedback parameters slightly.

It's tricky stuff, moving the sensor around to exactly compensate for camera motion. Get it ever so slightly wrong and it creates camera shake rather than reduces it!

Comment edited 24 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Jorginho
By Jorginho (6 months ago)

I have the EPL5 and it does show up every once in a while. Rarely but you want to trust your cam and it seems I cannot do that completely. I totally agree that this means no gold award. For a cam at that price, you can ask for perfection when it comes to these kind of things.

2 upvotes
Usher99
By Usher99 (6 months ago)

Image blurring looks exactly like shutter shock. Please restest wiht anti vibe mode at at least 1/8 sec. The pens tend to have noisier shutters, thus more shutter shock. I think the OM-D has the best in this regard but only a small amount of formal testing has been done. It would be nice to test all mirrorless cams for this.

http://cameraergonomics.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/micro-43-shutter-shock-revisited-omd-em.html

http://www.wlcastleman.com/equip/reviews/pz14-42/index.htm

The OM-D does best here. Very surprsed this issue is totally ignored by reviewers. At least Oly supplies a work around .
I think the OM-D shutter may be quiter, ie less shock than the EM-1 but have seen no formal testing.
An Electronic first curtain eliminates this but at the cost of motion artefacts and trouble using flash.

1 upvote
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (6 months ago)

"The issue is most prevalent at shutter speeds between 1/80th and 1/250th of a second, and most obviously visible when using short telephoto lenses [...]"

Wow. That's a biggie. No, that genormous and unacceptable for a camera positioned that high.

P.S. Gotta try to see whether the touch AF would do anything with the shutter shock on my GX7.

4 upvotes
NowHearThis
By NowHearThis (6 months ago)

I nearly bought and EPL1 but this issue kept me from buying it and other Olympus cameras. Until they implement an Electronic First Curtain shutter, those light weight Oly's will continue to suffer from Shutter-shock.

1 upvote
John Driggers
By John Driggers (6 months ago)

Try the electronic shutter on the GX7 (and turn off sounds for a silent camera).

0 upvotes
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (6 months ago)

@John, I have already tried the e-shutter. I like it for what it is but I do not like it being so poorly integrated with the rest of the camera. Panny should have made an option to use the e-shutter when it is OK to use the e-shutter instead of the mechanical one. Manually switching between shutters is a chore and recipe for failed shots (since the e-shutter comes with its own bunch of limitations).

0 upvotes
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

which limits are that?

0 upvotes
ThePhilips
By ThePhilips (6 months ago)

E-shutter is slow. It is said that it takes 1/10 of a second to retrieve image from the sensor. My observations are that GX7 is even slower, at around 1/7-1/8 of a second. That causes moving object to appear distorted in the frame. That also causes any flickering light source to introduce dark/light bands to the image. Because 1/10-1/7 of a second is real long time.

0 upvotes
Matthias Hutter
By Matthias Hutter (6 months ago)

Is there an button to switch the studio scene to 4 competitors?

1 upvote
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

Not at the moment.

We're experimenting with a 2-way comparison that can then be pushed to show other cameras from the descriptive text below the scene. We were worried that having four cameras would mean you might not notice the changes occurring as you clicked the links and that the navigation pane would be off the top of the page as you read the descriptive text.

However, a 4-up comparison is available from the bottom of the 'reviews' menu on all pages. If you click on the New Studio Scene Comparison Tool link, you should be able to choose any four cameras you like.

Comment edited 49 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Dave Luttmann
By Dave Luttmann (6 months ago)

Dynamic range charts for comparison are missing...at least on my computer

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

That should be fixed shortly.

2 upvotes
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

Also it's a joke that the SL1 gets gold and this gets silver

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

If I may distract you from your crusade for a moment - the review explains why it misses out on a Gold.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
16 upvotes
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

Okay. I just think every mirrorless camera should get a gold award and no DSLRs should ever get one.

6 upvotes
moimoi
By moimoi (6 months ago)

Lol!!!

1 upvote
thx1138
By thx1138 (6 months ago)

Woeful IS alone should see it excluded from gold. That level of shake from 17mm lens at 1/80 is pathetic with IS on. I can get a high % of sharp shots with my ancient 400mm IS lens at 1/60 and for 35mm I can get a good % of sharp shots at 1/20 without IS.

5 upvotes
Peter Bendheim
By Peter Bendheim (6 months ago)

Your name clearly gives away your agenda - silly really, you might to better if you were more subtle. The SL1 is a very competent camera, it's compact, has great IQ, and I don't think that your crusade is much enhanced by being destructive about another product. It just makes you look a bit foolish and I'm sure you would not want others to think that of you, would you?

3 upvotes
marike6
By marike6 (6 months ago)

The SL1? You mean the one with the great photo quality, video quality, VF, and no issues at commonly used shutter speeds?

Seriously, do you need a wambulance? :-)

Comment edited 48 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

I mean the SL1 that's built like disposable children's toy and looks as ugly as one, compared to the E-P5 which is one of the most beautiful and indestructible consumer cameras the world has ever seen,

0 upvotes
Peter Bendheim
By Peter Bendheim (6 months ago)

You really do write such rubbish. And so dramatic, too! Because it's aluminum doesn't make it indestructible. Or water-resistant. It's retro nice. But that doesn't make it beautiful. It makes it nostalgic. Anyone can copy old. And in the end only the images really count. Unless you collect objects. BTW, what's the crusade all about?

0 upvotes
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

You're wrong. It does make it beautiful because I said so and beauty is in the eye of the beholder. You're also wrong to say that apparently anyone can "copy old" because clearly Canon and Nikon have failed miserably in their attempts to do so.

0 upvotes
cgarrard
By cgarrard (6 months ago)

MC- give up your crusade. 10 Words in to reading your replies I dismissed you and moved on. You aren't helping.

1 upvote
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

That's a lie Carl. You didn't dismiss me, you went out of your way to write a response to them so clearly what I said caught your attention. Why don't you go hit up your "old source" from Sony to see when that A600 DSLR with 18MP sensor that got changed to 16MP is going to be released?

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

@Mirrorles - you are forgetting two things: price and class of camera.

0 upvotes
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

I'm not forgetting either of those things. They cancel each other out. The E-P5 is a higher class of camera so of course it's expected to have a higher price. Of course you get ridiculously more for your money with the E-P5.

0 upvotes
Raist3d
By Raist3d (6 months ago)

What you just said proves the point I said: no, they don't cancel each other out. The point is the EP5 is a higher class of camera in which it competes it *and* a high price - so the issue that dpreview finds with IBIS becomes more unnaceptable.

I did not say price and class of camera as exclusives but as things that mark higher expectations from the camera.

Comment edited 30 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
kreislauf
By kreislauf (6 months ago)

i have fun reading this :D

0 upvotes
Mirrorless Crusader
By Mirrorless Crusader (6 months ago)

You left out the most important part - the scoring number at the end.

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (6 months ago)

It should be there now.

1 upvote
Total comments: 415
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