Important update on EM1 vs E-5 (vs Canon 70D) focussing

Started Sep 11, 2013 | Discussions thread
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erichK Veteran Member • Posts: 5,675
Important update on EM1 vs E-5 (vs Canon 70D) focussing

I'm simply quoting this, because a lot of people seem to have missed this significant re-examination of this critical area, and have used it to dismiss a very significant new camera for Olympus (as I remember, the OM 4Ti tended to be dismissed, as nothing really new!)


Having gone back and spent some more time with an Olympus E-5, I'm inclined to be more positive about the E-M1's behaviour with Four Thirds lenses - not because it's better than I originally stated, but because the E-5 isn't as good as I'd previously thought. Consequently, E-5 users expectations are probably lower than I originally believed. It's also easy to under-appreciate the camera's performance with Four Thirds lenses because it's so fast when using Micro Four Thirds lenses.

However, side-by-side use suggests that, while the E-M1 focuses at a similar speed to the E-5 in good light, it is more prone to occasionally slowing down and juddering the lens into focus than the E-5. This behaviour is particularly apparent when switching focus from distant to near objects or when shooting in moderate-to-good lighting levels (inside a well-lit office with large windows).

The way see it is this: if you're a Four Thirds lens owner and hoping for contemporary DSLR performance, you're going to be disappointed. However, if you want a camera that offers a considerable step up in image quality, that allows you to continue to take great images with your existing lenses and welcomes you into an impressive and growing new system, then you'll be delighted.

Which isn't to say the focus is bad - our first impressions are that the performance is consistent with Canon's EOS 70D, which offers some of the best live view focus of a conventional DSLR. However, for the very best performance, the E-M1 should be used with Micro Four Thirds lenses.

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saskatoon, canada
Photography is a small voice, at best, but sometimes one photograph, or a group of them, can lure our sense of awareness.
- W. Eugene Smith, Dec 30, 1918 to Oct 15, 1978.
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 erichK's gear list:erichK's gear list
Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330 Olympus E-620 Olympus E-5 Olympus PEN E-PL5 +23 more
Canon EOS 70D Olympus E-5 Olympus E-M1
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