Why is an OM-D better than a Pentax K-5?

Started May 9, 2012 | Discussions thread
Steve_ Senior Member • Posts: 2,876
Re: Why is an OM-D better than a Pentax K-5?

I have the OMD, and have sold off most of my Pentax gear to a buddy that has the K5. He hasn't admitted it yet, but I think he is mightily enticed by my OMD after seeing the results it can produce. He is a fairly inexperienced photographer where I am a novice with 30 years of practice, so it isn't a totally fair comparison, however. The OMD does almost entirely erase the DR and ISO advantages his K5 demonstrates over my K20D, making it far easier for me to impress him.

This is really more about DSLR vs. MFT that it is about the particular bodies. The K5 has better ergonimics and controls, being much larger, and that Pentax understands there is no reason to demote ISO control options to a secondary status in the digital age. It also has an (excellent) optical viewfinder, and phase-detection AF. Of these, the phase-detection AF is often the make-or-break factor. If you want to shoot action, the contrast-detection AF of the OMD isn't much pumpkin. But also unerstand that Pentax is the gang that can't shoot straight where AF performance is concerned, so you really should be cross-shopping Canon or (most likley) Nikon DSLR alternatives.

In terms of IQ, there's little difference. Both the K5 and OMD have great sensors, and there are great lenses available for either. My feeling that the K5 has a slight advantage due to its larger sensor, but the difference could be termed slight.

The biggest deal for me is indeed the size. I can well carry and use either cameras, but its the size of the entire kit where MFT really shines. I have tiny bag, but can still fit my OMD, clip-on flash, FL300r, 14 and 20mm Panasonics, 45mm Oly, my VF2 viefinder, and a few filters, rubber hoods, memory cards and cables. If I move up to a just really small bag, I can also fit my 40-150 and 4/3s Oly 35 Macro with adaptor. It took a backpack to carry most of my Pentax system, and with my terrible back issues this doomed me to never having more than the lens on the camera and one more hanging from my belt with me, and even that was a bit clumsy depending on the size and weight of the second lens.

One other caveat about the Pentax. Although lucky users will swear this is not a factor, I found their lens-integrated focus motor designs (SDM) to be only a gerneration or two from reliable. It can break, break, and break again-but it least it's slow.
Olymus OM-D E-M5
Panasonic 14/2.5, 20/1.7
Olympus 45/1.8, 40-150

 Steve_'s gear list:Steve_'s gear list
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G Vario 7-14mm F4 ASPH Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 50-200mm 1:2.8-3.5 SWD Panasonic Lumix G 14mm F2.5 ASPH +13 more
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