Help with choice: Sony Nex 5R, Sony Nex F3 or Olympus OMD EM5

Started Jan 21, 2013 | Questions thread
NowHearThis Senior Member • Posts: 2,994
My opinion, I try and qualify it as best I can...

When it comes to the Sony vs Olympus question, I break it down this way.

If you only shoot primes and don't mind not having the shallower DOF of and APS-C sized sensor then Olympus is probably the better option right now. Although once Sony ads an 85/1.8 I'd re-evaluate my opinion here.

If you primarily shoot with Zooms and supplement a 24, 35, or 50mm prime on occasion, then I'd say Sony is your better option. The only Olympus micro four thirds zoom that I like is the 9-18, but it doesn't go wide enough for me - but optically it's very good. The 12-50, 14-42 (3 versions), 40-150, 14-150, 70-300 are all disappointing (mostly in terms of IQ at the longer end of the zoom range, some in terms of feel/handling). I've shot with them all, and I just don't like them. I could use Panasonic zooms, but Oly doesn't correct for the flaws in Panasonic lenses (e.g. distortion, CA, vignetting) so I'd end up doing more PP work then I would want or have time for.

One more thing about Olympus Zooms, Admittedly most of my experience is using them Olympus bodies that have heavy clunky shutters that add blur to the image between 1/80 - 1/250 sec. I have not tried them yet on the OMD, although, I don't think any of those zooms listed above can do that sensor justice. I like Micro Four Thirds, I nearly purchased one, (I actually did buy the Pany 14-140) but ultimately it just didn't work out. I'm not a fan of the OMD's looks, but that should matter less for most, I don't like it's lack of hand grip and other ergonomics, but again others might not mind.

JayneO wrote:

Hello, I am at last upgrading from a point and click camera! The photo's and movies I will be taking are mainly family, kids, animals, gardens and plants, holidays, kids sport like basketball and gymnastics or dancing. But having the 'gear' I would really love to explore photography more. I had been wanting a DSLR for a very long time, but now seeing all the new compact options and feeling the weight of the DSLRs I have a narrowed down my choice to the following 3 cameras, but am in a blur of reading reviews.

A few things: I have missed not having an optical viewer but only the OMD has this,

The Viewfinder is an EVF one, not OVF, you could also consider the NEX-6 or Panasonic G5, along with the OMD if you want a viewfinder.

I would have to buy one for the Sony's and this just bumps the price up so much more. I don't have any other lens so thought the twin lens kits were a good option, but maybe in the future I'd like to purchase other lenses.

What would be my best buy and the most suitable for my needs?

Sony Nex 5R with twin lens kit AUS $1,000 to $1,200

18-55 and 55-210, very good zooms, they perform better on the NEX-5r and NEX-6 then on my NEX7

Sony Nex F3 with twin lens kit AUS $878

Olympus OMD EM5 with 12-50mm lens AUS $1,200 or with twin lens $1,400

12-50 is ok for video, but may leave you frustrated for stills. The 14-42 is average at best, probably the lowest in IQ of all the standard zoom lenses in micro four thirds or APS-C mirrorless.  The 40-150 is ok to 100mm and unremarkable beyond that.

Thanks for your consideration and hopefully suggestions!

I would recommend a NEX6 with the 18-55 and 55-210 or consider a G5 with a 14-42 and 45-175 or 45-200 as well.

If you could spring for it a NEX6 with a Sony 18-200 LE might be another good option.


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Olympus PEN-F Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R Panasonic Lumix G 42.5mm F1.7 Panasonic Leica 12-60mm F2.8-4.0 ASPH
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