Question About OM-D for the OM-D Users

Started May 29, 2013 | Discussions thread
peevee1 Veteran Member • Posts: 6,247
Re: Question About OM-D for the OM-D Users

kcamacho11 wrote:

Greetings to all. I am actually using my brother's account here to get some feedback from some of you. I rather get it from here, as I am tired of asking the salesmen from a few camera shops which gave me short answers, trying to push me to finalize the purchase. He tells me he spends a lot of time here and thinks it's a great forum, where a lot of questions are always greatly answered.

Anyways, I have few questions which I am sure have been brought up before in this forum, but I cannot find the answer to them. Do not get me wrong, but I would just want some honest answers, and nothing biased. If I were asking these same questions in an NEX forum, I would ask for the same.

I am ditching my DSLR gear (tired of carrying it around) and I am switching to mirrorless.

My brother has an NEX-7, and his wife an NEX-6. He is trying to sway me towards the NEX-6 / 7 but I am willing to do some research first. The only other camera I have in mind aside from the NEX-6 or NEX-7 is the OM-D. I know when it comes to video, the NEX 6/7 are far better, but I never shoot video, so I could care less about that issue. No local camera stores have the OM-D in stock where I can go and try them out, so I wanted go get some input from OM-D users.

Try to find one, maybe a little farther out. Ergonomics is very personal. Also, these are ILCs, make sure you consider them with the lenses you want to use with them.

I often use E-M5, and extensively tried NEX-6 with 16-50, and a little NEX-5N with 18-55 (the latter lens comes in NEX-7 kit).

The 2 NEX lenses leave very different impressions. With 16-50, NEX-6 is pretty light and compact - more compact than E-M5 with 12-50 in fact. Controls are not as convenient on NEX-6, the wheel around the central button falls under the base of the thumb and not easy to use (and due to NEX-6 interface, it is unusable other than in M mode anyway), while both control wheels of E-M5 are immediately accessible from shooting hand position.

The 12-50 in a kit with E-M5 is ven longer than NEX 18-55, but thinner and just about as light. Of course, it is much more versatile than both 16-50 and 18-55, with longer reach (to 100mm eq), macro mode. Compared to 18-55, it is also wider (extremely usefully), compared to 16-50 it reaches significantly longer and has BOTH zoom and manual focus (with 16-50 you can use one at a time). Of course, both E-M5 and 12-50 are weather sealed and does not extend when zoomed (16-50 has to be extended even before first use), putting it in another league.

To get what 18-55 does, you'd get Oly 14-42 II instead, and it is much smaller and lighter. Also it has useful and cheap wide, fish eye and macro converters, expanding its capabilities.

With tele zooms, the difference grows - Oly 40-150/4-5.6 is much smaller and lighter and better compared to Sony 55-210/4.5-6.3. The same story with all other lenses - m43s are smaller/cheaper/better.

A few concerns I have:

- Image quality......I am aware the OM-D contains a smaller M43 sensor, as compared to the larger APS-C sensor. How is the overall image quality? Dynamic range? High ISO performance? Detail?
I guess my question is, does an OM-D with kit 12-50 lens compare in image quality as to the NEX-7 with kit lens? Or because of it having a smaller sensor, would I need to have some nice glass on the OM-D for it to match to the APS-C image quality, depth of field, etc?

JPEG image quality is about the same or better on Oly, RAW (if properly processed) is a little better on NEX, NEX-7 has a little higher sensor resolution (4000 lines vs 3456 lines, or about 15% difference), but to take advantage of those for real pictures, you'd have to use sharper lenses than 18-55 or 16-50 kits, like $1100 Sony/Zeiss 24/1.8 or $1250 Zeiss Touit 12/2.8. For comparison, equally sharp Oly 17/1.8 is $450 and Oly 12/2.0 is $800.

I shoot family/vacation and landscape photos with some low light as well.

Another reason I ask is because I have seen some photos of certain OM-D users around the internet (Flickr in particular), and some do not look right to me. In some pictures I saw of someone who took them on a cruise vacation, when he took pictures of his family in a certain distance (not close to him), the depth of field seemed pretty bad. The family looked a bit "Washed out" and it was hard to determine the depth of field between them and the cruise they were standing in front of (which seemed pretty far away). He was using the 14-150 lens, could it have been a bad copy????

No, it is just a slow lens, and in bright sunlight maybe was used with closed aperture. To have shallow DoF in bright sunlight, you would need to use ND filters and fast lenses with any system, maybe with the exception of medium format.

- The grip of the OM-D? From looking at pictures, it seems a bit rather uncomfortable to firmly hold. The grip on the NEX 6 and 7 sure makes them rather easily to firmly hold and shoot away.

It is strictly individual and should be tried for yourself. Hold of E-M5 without additional grip is close to compacts (because it is a compact, duh), not to DSLRs - I don't, well, grip around it with my fingers, I put it on the base on my palm, and index finger on the shutter naturally prevents it from falling to the left, thumb from falling backward, and other fingers from falling forward, without effort. Plus, of course, I hold the lens with my left hand when shooting.

- The it really that bad as some say it is?

I think it is very good. EVF in NEX-6 is even sharper, but I think has slower maximum refresh rate.

- If I want to shoot my pictures in 3:2 ratio instead of 4:3, would it still maintain 16MP in resolution? Or would the OM-D crop the image making it smaller in resolution, like 14MP for example?

It will crop a little, and crop even more in 16:9 (just like NEX) and 1:1, but not as much as NEX in 1:1. Every ratio is useful, depending on your subject, distance and focal length used. There is no physical control for ratio in any of the cameras (unlike Panasonic LX), but on E-M5, switching is pretty easy as the ratio is in Super Control Panel, and if you (like I am) use it all the time, it stays selected, so changing it is a matter of pressing OK and turning a dial.

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