New to Oly, 4/3 from A DSLR view point

Started Mar 25, 2011 | Discussions thread
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AM4L
AM4L Senior Member • Posts: 2,832
New to Oly, 4/3 from A DSLR view point

Not that most people will care, I thought I would take a few brief moments to provide a long time DSLR users view of the Oly 4/3rd system.

For reference, I have owned several, Fujian, Nikon and Canon cameras. At one point I was working as a semi professional and you can see a small sample of my work on my website. My interest in a 4/3rd system was size with lens flexibility for travel where lugging my current D700 system is not practical.

My choice of the E-PL2 was based on the image quality in the reviews I read, the built in flash, built in Image Stabelization, and overall features. I was torn between the PL2 and the Panasonic GF2, however the Oly won overall for me.

It was really interesting moving to a camera like this from both a usability perspective and also feel and approach to making images. A DSLR was almost invisible in my hands as most critical adjustments can be made while looking through the lens with your fingers. Adding the VF2 has helped some of that, however the VF2 seems a little clunky and is far from a real View Finder. It is adequet to counter issues with shooting in bright light though. While you can use it to navigate and change settings through the lenses, I am simply just not use to it yet.

Overall though I can say that I feel confident that I can settle into this camera and that it will meet my needs. I hope as a DSLR user that 4/3rds takes two directions, the mini range finder style with changeable lenses and the mini DSLR. The DSLR user paradigm will make 4/3rds more attractive for photographers like me that like the idea of a highly capable but small compact system. I think the style and layout of the rangefinder cameras might also sell well with the classical camera lovers as well. There of course can also be the models like they are, however I hope the feel and ergonomics of them improve. I am not sure how though you solve the small camera in big clunky hands delima! :). I'd like to see a better EVF option, lower profile, less clunky looking and better eye relief.

So far I have been very impressed wight the image quality from the PL2, I have no real complaints on that front. I put a few quick samples in my gallery here on DP. The camera with the kit 14-42 lens seems to work well, even in low light. I have my eye on the 9-18 or 17mm pancake and already took advantage of the $100 offer for the longer 40-150 zoom they had at my store.

If you are a DSLR user thinking about one of these systems, keep in mind that these cameras are highly capable on all fronts, however you may have difficulty adjusting to the different user interface and ergonomics. The EP2 may be more appealing to you as well if your willing to forgo the built in flash. Those models seem much nicer in the hands. I am sure the higher resolution model that is sure to follow soon will also be very appealing. If your like me though, higher resolution is a secondary concern. I'd rather see cleaner ISO at 12mp than have more pixels. Improvements in usability, Af systems, ect also are of more importance to me.

If people want, I'll provide the after two weeks update up the road. I also have a big trip planned at the end of April, and that will be the ultimate test for me.

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