Any current/former EM5 or EM1 owners considering a switch to XT-1?

Started Feb 19, 2014 | Discussions
Astrophotographer 10 Veteran Member • Posts: 9,236
Re: Any current/former EM5 or EM1 owners considering a switch to XT-1?

I have an XT1. It captures my running grandchild very well either running towards me or at any angle. Most seem to be accurately focused.

Greg.

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caver3d Contributing Member • Posts: 727
Re: Any current/former EM5 or EM1 owners considering a switch to XT-1?

I've solved that dilemma.  I own the Olympus E-M5, E-M1, Fuji X-E1, X100, and X-T1.  I use them all.  I won't be switching to any one manufacturer.

caver3d

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caver3d Contributing Member • Posts: 727
Re: Any current/former EM5 or EM1 owners considering a switch to XT-1?

dadaoftwo wrote:

I am a current EM5 owner, but have been reluctant to pay the premium for an EM1 as I don't consider it to be much of an upgrade - specifically, the lack of AF-C.

As my nickname suggests, I am a father of two, and have been really frustrated at not being able to take those photos of my kids running towards me with the delirious smile plastered all over their faces as only kids can when they're running. I've had to be content with taking running shots from the side as then I have more time to focus and manually track their lateral runs. But these shots are often disappointing as the smiles just aren't captured - any attempt at using AF-C (or C-AF) has been a disaster on my EM5!

But now comes the XT-1, and it's weather-sealed, and although lacking in stabilisation, Fuji has lenses which have OIS. But the biggest plus, a (seemingly) working AF-C function!

Is there anyone here who has switched camps from EM5 to any of the X-Series cameras? What other factors do I need to consider? The price points between the EM1 and XT-1 are quite similar too!

If you had a bunch of 43 lenses like I do, then you would definitely and gladly pay the so-called "premium" for the Olympus E-M1.  It is one amazing camera, which includes the class-leading 5-axis IS.

I also own the X-T1, a great camera.  But I will tell you this - the E-M1 AF is definitely faster than the X-T1.  And I have done comparative shooting with them.

caver3d

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gxtoast New Member • Posts: 19
Conflicting experiences with E-M1 noise levels...

I have been reading a few threads and many people are commenting about the E-M1's high noise output for both low and high ISO being significantly worse than either the X-T1 or D7100. Then there are other people saying that the noise levels are close enough and a simple pass in Lightroom can fix any unwanted noise without compromising the overall sharpness of the E-M1 image.

So, I was wondering if perhaps some people have managed to tweak their E-M1 for improved noise and color output. Can anyone comment on this?

I'm still considering the E-M1, X-T1, and now the D7100 - after having cross the D610 off the list for being just too big as a carry everywhere camera.

The D7100 with top quality DX lenses might be doable - I just have to go play with it along side the X-T1 and E-M1, again.

Cheers

mlmusto Senior Member • Posts: 2,084
kids rule
2

my two cents - based on experience -- hey, if your objective is shooting kids, er, let me rephrase that (I have 3 myself), then dslr and Nikon DX is the way to go - you only get those shots once in a lifetime.  so go that route w/ smaller form factor for now, you can pick up a Fuji down the road.  if the kids are running around or headed towards playing sports, you will need what Nikon or I guess Canon have to offer.

it's a tool.

you can pick the x-t1 or other Fuji later or get one for the more static shots (image quality is great).

owner of d800/700, 3 fujis (xpro1, x100s, x-ti just acquired).  my kids are now out of sports and into their academic pursuits so I get the best of both worlds and now migrating to Fuji.

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b0k3h Regular Member • Posts: 436
Re: Conflicting experiences with E-M1 noise levels...

gxtoast wrote:

I have been reading a few threads and many people are commenting about the E-M1's high noise output for both low and high ISO being significantly worse than either the X-T1 or D7100. Then there are other people saying that the noise levels are close enough and a simple pass in Lightroom can fix any unwanted noise without compromising the overall sharpness of the E-M1 image.

So, I was wondering if perhaps some people have managed to tweak their E-M1 for improved noise and color output. Can anyone comment on this?

I'm still considering the E-M1, X-T1, and now the D7100 - after having cross the D610 off the list for being just too big as a carry everywhere camera.

The D7100 with top quality DX lenses might be doable - I just have to go play with it along side the X-T1 and E-M1, again.

Cheers

Without question at 100% there is clearly more noise on M43 images, even at base ISO!!! Without AA filter, it takes on this mottled but sharply-defined look (if that makes sense).

Yes, it can be de-noised *easily* in LR.  No, it doesn't reach smoothness of APS-C/X-Trans, and it doesn't touch my FF RX1 (but what does!)....

BUT, consider the output medium:  if you resize for web or make book-sized prints, it's largely a non-issue.

When I had the X100 and EM-5 pair I was already getting more keepers with the Olympus but disliked its ergonomics -- wonky power switch, fewer and spongier buttons, shallower stock grip design -- and the lens selection at the time wasnt up to snuff.  It  lacked the pro zoom and in-house 50mm-equiv prime.

Now I have X100s and EM-1 with a stable of lenses.  The ergonomics is impossibly good; weighs and balances perfectly even with 400g pro zoom on.  The system does everything: shoots up close with true macro capabilities, has reach with the 75mm prime, does fisheye with samyang, performs excellent wide-open with in-house lenses (something I cant say for the X100(s)), and has no trouble playing in the rain.

With Fuji, in the day, for city- and land-scapes it does fine.  But catching candid moments with people, it's a no go.  The focusing at night frustrates me to no end.  Improved manual focusing throw alleviates it somewhat, but not with people in movement.  I *want* to love it, but I just cant.

What does this have to do with X-T1?  Unless AF is drastically improved from the rest of the line -- and it doesnt appear to be -- then its a no go, despite how much I like its ethos.  Maybe when X-T2 and the sealed 16-55/2.8 comes out, the landscape will change....

Curt Gerston Forum Member • Posts: 87
Re: Any current/former EM5 or EM1 owners considering a switch to XT-1?
5

I've had Olympus m4/3 stuff for a number of years, including the EM1 for the past year.  I've been happy with it, mostly, and I like the EM1 a lot, but was curious about the Fuji XT1 for a few reasons: I liked the output I was getting from the x100s (quite a bit more than files from Olympus... subjective judgement for sure), and I was impressed with the stuff I was seeing from the Fuji lens lineup.  So I've been using the XT1 for a month now, and with 2000+ shots to work with, I have a dilemma on my hands.  Without question, they are both great systems, with very different plus/minus lists.  Some of this is subjective, as life is too busy for side-by-side testing etc, but here are my observations of what I feel are the strengths of each:

OMD EM1:

  • AF is faster, for sure, and pretty accurate (but not as accurate, for me, as the XT1).  Focusing is just instant with this system.
  • Smaller lenses, so it's a smaller system to carry around.
  • Really marvelous handling camera, for it's design (flexible, modal dials and buttons)
  • Some little handling things are better on the Olympus, more refined, than the on the Fuji.  One example: when you pull the LCD screen down for waist level shooting, the Olympus turns off the eye sensor (a great idea); but the Fuji's is still operating, so the LCD blacks out if you shoot too close to your body.  It's a little thing, but that's what I mean by more refined, and there are a few things like that that makes me feel the Olympus is a second generation product, where the XT1 is not.
  • The sensor is a bit noisier, I suppose, but I feel fine using this camera up to 3200 ISO no problem, same as the Fuji.  I don't mind a bit of noise, and it's not bad.  Also, there are no problems with using Lightroom (my choice in RAW converter) with the Olympus.

Fuji XT1

  • AF is fast enough, including for my kids (which was the OP's original question). Not as fast as EM1, but I haven't lost many shots due to the speed.  Also, the accuracy is a notch above the Olympus.  I got a lot of accurate shots with the EM1, but the XT1 is dead on always.  It may be a touch slower to get there, but it's more reliable.
  • Continuous AF is better on the Fuji (in my experience) than the Olympus, which surprised me.  I shot a few hundred frames at my daughter's soccer game, and got a much higher hit rate than I ever did with the EM1.  I thought I might be getting it wrong, but it turns out Thom Hogan at his website is finding the same thing in comparing the two.  I was keeping my Canon 7D around for sports, but now wonder if the Fuji will be good enough for my needs (though still not as good as the 7D).
  • The Fuji lenses are spectacular.  I like the Olympus lenses, but I love what I'm getting from the Fuji ones.  For me, the results are worth the extra weight/size.  They are gorgeous.  Sharper, for sure, but even more dazzling to me is the micro-contrast. I haven't seen files like this since shooting for a few years with Leica M stuff.
  • I'm finding that I like the Fuji dedicated dials and buttons more than the modal system on the EM1.  So, even though the EM1 is more refined and mature, I enjoy the Fuji more.
  • The sensor: a mixed bag.  Great color, and pulls ridiculous detail from the lenses.  Very clean (too clean sometimes...sometimes the blue skies look too plastic).  Cleaner at 6400, so I'll use it, but it looks overdone with NR, even in RAW, for some shots.  There is some smearing (as often complained about around here) in LR with foliage...occasionally.  For those files, I've been using RAW Developer, which solves it.

The EVF's on both are great.  The Fuji's is a bit bigger, but the Olympus is a bit better in my opinion at handling different lighting situations.  A wash.

So my dilemma is which system to keep.  I really don't like keeping two systems... Neither system feels fluid when I keep switching between them, and it's too expensive regardless.  I'm leaning towards the Fuji, because, above all, the lenses are wowing me, and I really do like the dials-system on the XT1 better.  Tough call, though.  Both are great systems.

As to the original OP's question: If shooting your kids on the move is truly the priority, a DSLR with sports-chops is the best bet, like the Canon 7D (or whatever Nikon's equivalent is).  Second best, to me, is the Fuji.  Third is the Olympus.  I'm talking AF-C here.  For accuracy in single-shot, both mirrorless systems are more accurate than DSLR systems, and Fuji has been the best for me.  The fastest is the Olympus, though. With practice I feel confident I can get lots of keepers of my kids on-the-go with any of the three systems.

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~ Curt

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jimkohn Regular Member • Posts: 167
I did switch, and now I'm switching back.

As much as I wanted to I just couldn't bond with the X-T1. I found the E-M1 to be more responsive and, once I set it up to my preferences, intuitive. I prefer the PASM set up with Program shift over the Fujifilm setup. It bugged me that with the X-T1 I controlled aperture one way with the 27mm (front control dial), another way with the 18-55 (Auto v. Aperture switch, no markings on lens barrel) and yet another way on the 56mm (no switch, markings on lens barrel). The ISO, aperture and shutter speed dials got on my nerves (one is locked, the other partially locked...) and required me to take the camera away from my eyes much too often. And I kept hitting the video button and front function button by accident. I know these are "niggles", and there are more, but as good as it is I just wasn't feeling the X-T1.

I thought the larger sensor would make a difference, but if it does my (old) amateur eyes can't see it and I see the reviews are split down the middle, boiling down to personal preference. Then I missed the Micro 4/3 lens selection, faster auto focus, and in camera stabilization. I just never really loved the X-T1 the way I did my E-M1, although I understand that it is a matter of priorities for the various strengths and weaknesses of these two great systems.

I just ordered a whole new OMD-EM1 kit, including the new Pan/Leica 42.5mm Nocticron f1.2 that I'm extremely excited about. Finally, I would be remiss if I did not mention how unbelievably accommodating B&H was in helping me to get out of my X-T1 and all the lenses. Kudos to them for amazing customer service.

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Marcos Villaroman Veteran Member • Posts: 5,118
Re: I did switch, and now I'm switching back.
1

jimkohn wrote:

As much as I wanted to I just couldn't bond with the X-T1. I found the E-M1 to be more responsive and, once I set it up to my preferences, intuitive. I prefer the PASM set up with Program shift over the Fujifilm setup. It bugged me that with the X-T1 I controlled aperture one way with the 27mm (front control dial), another way with the 18-55 (Auto v. Aperture switch, no markings on lens barrel) and yet another way on the 56mm (no switch, markings on lens barrel). The ISO, aperture and shutter speed dials got on my nerves (one is locked, the other partially locked...) and required me to take the camera away from my eyes much too often. And I kept hitting the video button and front function button by accident. I know these are "niggles", and there are more, but as good as it is I just wasn't feeling the X-T1.

Glad to hear you can back out of the X-T1 and lens in time.

I thought the larger sensor would make a difference, but if it does my (old) amateur eyes can't see it and I see the reviews are split down the middle, boiling down to personal preference. Then I missed the Micro 4/3 lens selection, faster auto focus, and in camera stabilization. I just never really loved the X-T1 the way I did my E-M1, although I understand that it is a matter of priorities for the various strengths and weaknesses of these two great systems.

For me, it came down to I didn't like the noise levels I was getting with the EM1 and the fact I found I can work with/around the current deficiencies with the X-T1.  At this point, I look forward to future Fujifilm bodies that will hopefully address the AF speed and other issues with the current camera; my current investment in Fuji-X glass should work well with those bodies.

FWIW, I think the following EM1 vs X-T1 article nailed the strengths/weaknesses of each very well for me:

http://www.danielkcheung.com/review/omd-em1-vs-xt1-for-wedding-photography

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SaltLakeGuy
SaltLakeGuy Forum Pro • Posts: 13,198
Re: I did switch, and now I'm switching back.
1

Marcos Villaroman wrote:

jimkohn wrote:

As much as I wanted to I just couldn't bond with the X-T1. I found the E-M1 to be more responsive and, once I set it up to my preferences, intuitive. I prefer the PASM set up with Program shift over the Fujifilm setup. It bugged me that with the X-T1 I controlled aperture one way with the 27mm (front control dial), another way with the 18-55 (Auto v. Aperture switch, no markings on lens barrel) and yet another way on the 56mm (no switch, markings on lens barrel). The ISO, aperture and shutter speed dials got on my nerves (one is locked, the other partially locked...) and required me to take the camera away from my eyes much too often. And I kept hitting the video button and front function button by accident. I know these are "niggles", and there are more, but as good as it is I just wasn't feeling the X-T1.

Glad to hear you can back out of the X-T1 and lens in time.

I thought the larger sensor would make a difference, but if it does my (old) amateur eyes can't see it and I see the reviews are split down the middle, boiling down to personal preference. Then I missed the Micro 4/3 lens selection, faster auto focus, and in camera stabilization. I just never really loved the X-T1 the way I did my E-M1, although I understand that it is a matter of priorities for the various strengths and weaknesses of these two great systems.

For me, it came down to I didn't like the noise levels I was getting with the EM1 and the fact I found I can work with/around the current deficiencies with the X-T1. At this point, I look forward to future Fujifilm bodies that will hopefully address the AF speed and other issues with the current camera; my current investment in Fuji-X glass should work well with those bodies.

FWIW, I think the following EM1 vs X-T1 article nailed the strengths/weaknesses of each very well for me:

http://www.danielkcheung.com/review/omd-em1-vs-xt1-for-wedding-photography

I agree with Daniel Cheung's assessment with one exception. Having owned a complete EM1 setup before and having compared the X-T1 before I let the complete EM1 system go, my experience in darkness was exactly the opposite. In near darkness where there was insufficient contrast on a subject the EM1 just hunted while the X-T1 locked focus (accurately I might add). This testing was repeated in an area and with subjects I've tested too many cameras to count at this point. Otherwise his article was pretty right on. For me I became very "anti noise" so the X-T1 satisfies like no other. But as they say one has to do what they have to do for their own needs and wants.

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jimkohn Regular Member • Posts: 167
Re: I did switch, and now I'm switching back.

It's interesting to see the differing assessments of the so called "objective" or measurable variables. Speed of autofocus, noise at high ISO, etc. Clearly there is no definitive answer on any number of these things.

As an amateur my priorities may be a little different. First and foremost is how likely I am to actually bring the camera along with me or just leave it home. It doesn't matter how good the camera is if I don't have it with me. So completely subjective variables, like how the camera feels in my hand, control layout, etc.,  come into play along with size, weight, form factor, etc.  Second is catching the shot. Again, all the technical stuff doesn't matter if  I fail to catch the shot, so that's where a cameras intuitive feel comes into play. Of course we get better with a camera the more we use it and we can get used to anything. But it seems that different cameras are better suited to different people for no particular technical reason. I agree with a lot of the previous comments suggesting spending as much time with the camera in your hands as possible before making a decision. I couldn't do that with the X-T1 because they were not in stock locally at the time. What I should have done is kept my E-M1 kit for a couple of weeks while I tried the X-t1. Amazon, B&H and others have liberal 30 day return policies for just this reason, I just failed to manage the process as well as I might have.

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somersetlad Regular Member • Posts: 250
Re: yes

XT 1 and 18-55 plus 10-24 arrived yesterday. M4/3 kit going for sale. Nothing wrong with M4/3, just very attracted to Fuji quality, output and ergonomics. Many years ago owned and loved Fuji MF rangefinder too in film days.. We will see.
John

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MrPhotoBob
MrPhotoBob Senior Member • Posts: 2,939
Re: Any current/former EM5 or EM1 owners considering a switch to XT-1?

dadaoftwo wrote:

I am a current EM5 owner, but have been reluctant to pay the premium for an EM1 as I don't consider it to be much of an upgrade - specifically, the lack of AF-C.

As my nickname suggests, I am a father of two, and have been really frustrated at not being able to take those photos of my kids running towards me with the delirious smile plastered all over their faces as only kids can when they're running. I've had to be content with taking running shots from the side as then I have more time to focus and manually track their lateral runs. But these shots are often disappointing as the smiles just aren't captured - any attempt at using AF-C (or C-AF) has been a disaster on my EM5!

But now comes the XT-1, and it's weather-sealed, and although lacking in stabilisation, Fuji has lenses which have OIS. But the biggest plus, a (seemingly) working AF-C function!

Is there anyone here who has switched camps from EM5 to any of the X-Series cameras? What other factors do I need to consider? The price points between the EM1 and XT-1 are quite similar too!

I have both systems, and I find myself shooting with the XT-1, then finding myself in situations where I wish that I had brought the EM-1 along with me as well.  I would rather just shoot with the Fuji XT-1 but I have a problem with the range of lenses that Fuji offers at this time as well as their flash.  I am leaning more towards the Fuji system as far as the quality of the images they produce, but I also like the EM-1 because of the different shoots that I have to do and the range of lenses that I have as well as the quality of flash that Olympus has for me to accomplish that task.  I can work with the flash that Fuji offer but not the range of lenses at this time.  Fuji is supposed to be coming out with a greater range of lenses and that may seal the deal as far as making up my mind as to which system I will end up with if not keeping both systems.  There have been times in which I have carried both systems out with me and kept them in the car just pulling out which ever setup I need at the time.

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Marcos Villaroman Veteran Member • Posts: 5,118
Re: I did switch, and now I'm switching back.

jimkohn wrote:

It's interesting to see the differing assessments of the so called "objective" or measurable variables. Speed of autofocus, noise at high ISO, etc. Clearly there is no definitive answer on any number of these things.

As an amateur my priorities may be a little different. First and foremost is how likely I am to actually bring the camera along with me or just leave it home. It doesn't matter how good the camera is if I don't have it with me. So completely subjective variables, like how the camera feels in my hand, control layout, etc., come into play along with size, weight, form factor, etc. Second is catching the shot. Again, all the technical stuff doesn't matter if I fail to catch the shot, so that's where a cameras intuitive feel comes into play. Of course we get better with a camera the more we use it and we can get used to anything. But it seems that different cameras are better suited to different people for no particular technical reason. I agree with a lot of the previous comments suggesting spending as much time with the camera in your hands as possible before making a decision. I couldn't do that with the X-T1 because they were not in stock locally at the time. What I should have done is kept my E-M1 kit for a couple of weeks while I tried the X-t1. Amazon, B&H and others have liberal 30 day return policies for just this reason, I just failed to manage the process as well as I might have.

For me, there's another factor in deciding what is best:  which system do I have a huge financial investment in, where I find living with the deficiencies of the current system out weigh all the time and potential financial loss of selling the old system.

If one were to assume that both Panasonic/Olympus and Fujifilm are going to remain strong enough to keep cranking out new lens and bodies on a regular basis, it's clear to me that both systems will work out for most people's needs.

I think there are physics-based restrictions to the smaller sensors that will probably not be fully over-come, such as diffraction.  For decent glass, m43 16MP sensors wills show it past f/8 which would mean a 24MP sensor would start showing reduced sharpness due to diffraction beyond f/5.6 or so.

But, the advantages of smaller size/lower weight of small sensor mirrorless systems to me means I'm willing to live with higher quality glass to reach peek sharpness below the diffraction limit.

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