Am I missing something?

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CedarTree33 Regular Member • Posts: 490
Am I missing something?
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First things first, I am not trolling nor trying to start an equivalency war. I’ve spent a lot of time asking questions about this topic and finally had the opportunity to test out some examples myself (rather than just getting verbal/written feedback and watching/reading reviews). I genuinely want to share my personal findings on comparing two different cameras and get some feedback, because I feel like I might be missing something. And yes, I am comparing a full-frame with a micro 4/3’s. (If that frustrates you, and you don’t want to have an adult conversation about the comparison, please stop reading, and move onto a post that improves your day).

Why am I comparing these two systems? Because an Olympus E-M1.3 with 12-100 f4 PRO and Oly 100-400 f5.0-6.3 and a Canon R5 with RF 24-105 f4 RF 100-500 are very similar in size and weight. I can also achieve an 800mm FOV with the RF 100-500 if I use the 1.6 crop (and still have similar megapixels). Yes, you gain, at most, a couple pounds with Canon system. However, for my personal use, I don’t consider that very much. Especially, if I gain significantly better image quality with the FF Canon…then I’m willing to increase a little extra weight to my pack.

Here are some images.

Oly E-M1.3 with 12-100 f4 PRO Linear gradient applied to sky and foreground (to lighten and darken respectively).

Canon R5 with 24-105 f4 exact same linear gradients applied to sky and foreground (to lighten and darken respectively).

In these first two images, I personally don’t see any tangible difference. Yes, there is slightly more noise in the Olympus image, but not anything that makes me dislike the image or is distracting from the image. I shot these two images with equivalent (*gasp* dare I say it?) settings, EXCEPT for ISO. Which I put at the each camera’s recommended setting of 200 and 100 respectively. I thought I would give each camera the best shot at giving me their best representation of the image, all other settings similar. Again, I don’t notice any difference, and I can’t tell if the slightly more saturated oranges in the R5 image are simply as result of the positioning of the sun in the sky being slightly different as it was setting and the images being taken at a minute or two apart (the time it took me to grab the other camera).

Here’s another example:

Olympus E-M1.3 with Live ND (can’t remember which LIVE ND setting…maybe ND16 or 32)

R5 with Multiple Exposure mode at 9 frames Averaging setting.

For all of you equivalency police out there, I know these aren’t “equivalent” images. But they are taken with very similar settings. And I purposefully wanted to see what I would be missing without the LIVE ND feature AND if I could recreate that feature with the R5 (with the multiple exposure modes).

Again, I don’t see a huge difference. I see a little more detail in the rocks in the R5 image, but see very similar in detail in the rocks with the E-M1.3. Also, I like the colors more in the E-M1.3 version. Here’s some more:

Olympus E-M1.3 (Linear gradient applied to taste)

R5 (similar linear gradient to the E-M1 image above applied for taste).

All of the photos above are in low-light situations…where the FF should be outpacing the m4/3’s in image quality. I just don’t see it. Yes, a slight increase in noise with the m4/3’s, but I don’t find it bad. What am I missing?

These next couple are in better light situations, so I wasn’t expecting to see a huge difference in IQ, but I figured I’d post them anyways. I wanted to see how much detail I could get between the highlights and shadows in some. Again, similar camera settings and FOV for each camera. (Sorry if I mislabel the photo, I tried to mark which was which. I’m sure the Metadata will correct me).

R5

E-M1.3

R5

E-M1.3

R5 (wanted to see the increased dynamic range)

E-M1.3 (Wanted to see the difference in the dynamic range).

With some images, I see a little improvement with the colors in the R5. However, it isn’t anything drastic. This also isn’t a consistent finding. Sometimes, the E-M1.3 has better colors. (By shooting in RAW, most of that can also be mitigated and edited to taste in post with either system)

Also, I know I will get shallower depth of field with the Canon, but with the Oly PRO 25 and 45 f1.2, I get enough depth of field and still have nice DOF. (Disclaimer: I have no interest in buying or carrying around the Canon f1.2 lenses) Plus, for most circumstances, I can change the foreground/background distance to control DOF as well. (For some reason, it won’t let me post more R5 photos to compare. Maybe I can post them in a reply to this post? Long story short, I’m not unhappy with the E-M1.3 images compared to the R5). I also know that I should get more detail out of the images with the R5, but again, I don’t really see that either. (With that said, I’m not printing any images…so I may see a difference with the prints…and yes, I recognize I can print larger on the R5, but I rarely print bigger than 24x36 these days).

Again, I don’t wish to troll or start any equivalency war or anything. (Unfortunately, I realize there will be some all upset about this post and berate me…oh well). I’m hoping to have a friendly discussion and get other’s opinions on their own findings. I’m sure I’m not the only one these days to question if I could get better image quality by packing similar weighted and priced gear.

Again, I genuinely want to have a discussion on what I may be missing or if people experience similar/different results as I’m getting. I am trying out the R5 and Canon system, thinking I would see noticeable IQ improvements. I knew I was sacrificing some cool features with the Oly (i.e. LIVE ND and LIVE Comp), but figured, if I was carrying the same weight with the system, I might as well get the best IQ I could.

However, personally, (with what I’m seeing in my personal use real world, quick shot, examples so far), I just can’t see a big difference which would justify switching to the Canon system. Also, if the E-M1.3 sensor can keep up with the R5, that’s pretty impressive! With all that said, am I missing something???

 CedarTree33's gear list:CedarTree33's gear list
Nikon Coolpix AW100 Olympus E-M1 III Canon EOS R5 Olympus 12-100mm F4.0 Olympus 25mm F1.2 +4 more
Canon EOS R5 Olympus E-M1
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