Olympus EPL2 noise superior to EP3 and OM-D?

Started Dec 8, 2012 | Discussions thread
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AngelicBeaver Contributing Member • Posts: 803
Olympus EPL2 noise superior to EP3 and OM-D?

I just bought an Epl2, as the price has dropped to around 200 dollars.  I've not been pleased with the GF3 at high ISO.  Panasonic has never done high ISO well, and the GF3 is no different. It gets smudgy and nasty looking.  I've been waffling about getting the PEN for a while, but what really put me over about it (besides the price) was looking at the high ISO comparisons in DPReview's database.

Comparing the EPL2 to the EP3 and the OMD, I noticed that with NR turned off, the EPL2 looks grainy, like they actually turned the NR off, whereas the other two still look smudgy (especially the OMD) at high ISOs.  At the same time, color blotching (the ugliest noise offender, in my opinion) was very minimal, even at ISO 6400.

I suppose the smudginess on the EP3 is so that they could show some "improvement" in the noise, without having a new sensor.  I wish they'd left it alone.  I looked at the OMD and thought, they are heading in the wrong direction with this.

In order of preference, I'd like Noise free images at high ISO or Grainy images at high ISO or a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, or grainy images, partially smeared to give the appearance of better high ISO performance.

I'd love to shoot RAW, so I don't have to worry about camera makers and their inexplicable handling of noise, but I don't have the time/software/hardware/energy to do it, and I doubt I ever will.  In the meantime, I'm glad Olympus made a good decision about the Epl2, and I hope they go back to that trend in the future (or make better sensors so that there's no noise in the first place).  If I want smudgy, I'll go back to Panasonic.

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 AngelicBeaver's gear list:AngelicBeaver's gear list
Olympus E-M1 Panasonic Lumix G 20mm F1.7 ASPH Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 75mm F1.8 Olympus 12-40mm F2.8 Panasonic Leica 100-400mm F4.0-6.3 ASPH
Olympus PEN E-P3 Olympus PEN E-PL2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3
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