Food for thought - FF vs M4/3's cost

Started Mar 25, 2013 | Discussions thread
OP papillon_65 Forum Pro • Posts: 27,030
Re: Food for thought - FF vs M4/3's cost

tgutgu wrote:

papillon_65 wrote:

Before I start this is not a "this is better than that" post nor a post about "equivalence". Both formats have their compromises and both do something the other can't, nuff said.

Anyway, due to the current nuclear winter hanging over the UK there has been little opportunity to get out and shoot. This has led me to generally surfing and reading up on various gear and looking at lots of images. Whilst doing this I stumbled on several Canon 5DMk2's for sale on ebay. They were bundled with the 24-105mm F4 L lens and priced at £1699. Now this seemed like an extremely good deal for a well respected, tried and tested full frame camera with a decent lens.

As soon there is the successor of the E-M5 Out, you'll get cheap E-M5 offerings too. It is just now not the case, because the E-M5 is the first of its class.

Of course.

I currently use the OMD mainly with the 12-35mm and 7-14mm and comparing the cost of the OMD and just the 12-35mm would take me past £1699. I also looked for a replacement for the 7-14mm and came across the 17-40mm F4 L lens, which is actually quite a bit cheaper than the 7-14mm.

The 7-14mm has a FOV of a 14mm lens at FF. That is a very significant difference to 17mm. So, you can't replace the 7-14mm with a 17-40mm. I speak from experience, because I owned both lenses.

I understand that, it'll be wide enough.

So if I wanted a full frame rig to replace my current m4/3's set up I could actually do it cheaper. The caveat being that I'd take a hit on size and weight.

But that's the whole point. m4/3 users don't buy it to get the ultimate IQ, but to get for their purpose a reasonable IQ in a much smaller system. For this target group, the point not buying FF is not the price, but the bulk. FF can be even cheaper, it would not make FF DSLR systems more attractive. If you are investigating in FF now, it means that you are completely changing your priorities. Such a change does not render m4/3 less attractive. As such, I cannot see the point of your thread. With regards to the pricing policy of m4/3, there are enough cheap offerings. The true competitor to the EF 17-40mm is the Olympus 9-18mm, which is actually cheaper. The competitor to the Panasonic 12-35mm is the EF 2.8/24-70mm II, which costs twice as much. A lens, which could replace the EF 24-105mm is the Olympus 12-50mm if you make some compromises for its much cheaper price. Both are weather sealed. If you want to take wildlife shots, the P 100-300mm has no match in terms of size and price, and its IQ isn't that bad.

The point is, that if like me, you've always wanted to try FF, now is a great time to do it. Dof control and ultimate IQ are better on FF, thats a given, I accept the size and weight compromises. Comparing lenses on different formats is a bit of an exercise in futility, I know what the respective lenses can and can't do and I accept the wins and losses.

I also looked for some prime lenses for the 5DMk2 and was surprised to find some very nice (and fast) prime lenses such as the 35mm F2, 50mm F1.4 and 100mm F2 which are also very reasonably priced.

So? m4/3 primes aren't that expensive and have usually better IQ.

That is debatable in many instances and there is more choice in the Canon world.

Now the 5Dmk2 is getting quite long in the tooth in modern terms and the OMD sensor is pretty close to it in terms of performance, not withstanding the inherent advantage of the larger FF sensor and light gathering etc etc. However, there is not doubt that the Canon will produce IQ that the OMD can't in terms of resolution and shallow depth of field effects,

Shallow DOF seems to be the new panacea in photography. Don't take an image without shallow DOF! m4/3 has enough potential for shallow DOF. There are more images suffering from not enough DOF than vice versa.

I shoot landscapes as much as anything but I'd also like to do more portraits/people stuff, dof control is an important part of that.

whilst the OMD can do it's stuff a lot lighter and smaller. Those are the obvious differences and the main reasons why I'd choose one over the other anyway.

That's the key. No low FF prices can go around this.

True enough.

I guess the point of my post is that if you want to go full frame there has never been a better time to do it. You can also get a Canon 6D plus the 24-105mm for £1829. I make no comment on which is better because that is a purely subjective thing dependent on what you need, but I have to say full frame is very tempting these days if you're happy to keep to shorter focal lengths and wide angle (which I generally do). Having looked at many images from the lenses I mentioned then FF can definitely be cheaper than M4/3's, this came as quite a surprise to me, you can even get a Tamron 28-75mm constant F2.8

But then you don't have 24mm equiv. With old technology, you can be always cheaper than current technology, that is nothing new. FF did not get substantially cheaper. The 5DMKII was already as cheap as the 6D, before the 5DMKIII arrived.

It wasn't just the camera price that tempted me, it was the lenses I'd like as well. Maybe I never noticed before, either way its competitively priced for me now.

zoom for less than £400 (not a bad lens by all accounts and not that big either). Maybe Panasonic and Olympus need to be a bit more aggressive on their pricing as I can see some people being tempted away to full frame.

I don't think that the "cheaper" FF offerings will eat a lot of the m4/3 sales. Going small is a complete different and even stronger priority. Cheap FF is for APS-C upgraders, which are still willing to accept the bulk.


Anybody else getting tempted? (I'm not really interested if you think it's big and heavy and you've "been there done that",I get the point, I'm more interested if you are tempted over to the dark side by these kind of prices and value.)

I am not tempted, because I don't see a FF benefit for my shooting. Unless you print big, there isn't enough difference to justify the bulk of FF. With m4/3, I can carry a larger selection of lenses with me with even less weight than even a simple FF setup with two zooms. The lower size and weight of m4/3 gives much more flexibility. I have more lenses in my portfolio, because I can carry them, which translates in much more shooting fun. Also I am less conspicuous.

Dof control and a different look and feel to the images is the main reason. If you don't want or need that then I agree. Personally I want to try it for myself.

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For the person who is good with a hammer, everything in life tends to look like a nail.....

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For the person who is good with a hammer, everything in life tends to look like a nail.....

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