Olympus E-30 Review
Studio scene comparison (RAW)
For our usual tests, we use Adobe Camera Raw for our RAW tests, however, as part of our normal reviewing process we discovered that ACR simply wasn't getting the detail we'd expect out of the E-30 files (we always compare at least three raw converters before we start this section). When we compared ACR's output to Olympus's own converter and Capture One the results were more different than we'd expect (ACR usually does very well in the resolution test).
Athough the most recent version of ACR offers support for the E-30, it does not appear to be producing the sort of quality we would expect to see - specifically it's resolution is actually lower than JPEG (probably not something you'd see in a print, but it would be very unfair to the E-30 to use it for pixel-level comparisons). We contacted the ACR team at Adobe and they acknowledged the rather sub-optimal resolution results for the E-30 in ACR 5.3 (it wll be fixed later). As a result, we have taken the unusual step of offering preliminary comparisons based on a different RAW converter.
These are not intended as a replacement for the ACR comparisons (which will be done at a later date), but just to give initial impressions. We will continue to use ACR as our default comparison tool and have strayed from it in this instance because a final-spec version offering E30 support isn't yet available. We will not be changing RAW converters to 'suit' particular cameras.
- Load RAW file into Capture 1
- Adjust exposure to match co-shot JPEG
- Save as a TIFF (for cropping) and as a JPEG quality 11 for download
This is our standard studio scene comparison shot. Lighting: daylight simulation, >98% CRI. Crops are 100%. Ambient temperature was approximately 22°C (~72°F).
And, so that you can try subjecting the images to your own noise reduction and image processing workflow, you can download the following RAW files:
Olympus E-30 vs. Canon 50D vs. Nikon D300
4.4 MB JPEG (4032 x 3024)
5.2 MB JPEG (4752 x 3168)
4.4 MB JPEG (4288 x 2848)
We often have to point out that the differences between modern DSLRs are extremely subtle as base ISO and this demonstrates that exactly. The D300 initially appears to be sharpest, though the slightly crisper paperclips in the 50D images suggest that the difference may be down to a minute difference in focussing.
The E-30's crops are not quite as sharp and detailed as its two rivals but for most purposes we're splitting hairs here. The D300 has the best per-pixel sharpness but I defy anyone to see a significant difference between these three cameras for the majority of real world uses.
Compared to Panasonic G1
We were hoping to compare the E-30 to Panasonic's G1 but could find no common ground on which to compare - Capture One does not support the G1 and, as mentioned above, the current ACR support for the E-30 produces results that are inconsistent with other converters.
That said, the Capture One conversion of E-30's output reveals little additional detail over the JPEGs (which is common on recent Olympus DSLRs - the JPEG engine does an excellent job of conveying the majority of the information from the RAW data), and falls significantly short of the level of detail that can be pulled out of G1 RAW files.
This leads us to suspect that, as with the previous generation of cameras, that the G1 and E-30 share the same underlying silicon but have different anti-aliasing filters and back-end electronics (it seems that less noise is ending up in the E-30's RAW files but it's difficult to be certain, given the tools currently available). However, as can be seen in the comparison to its high-end APS-C peers, the E-30 is only producing marginally softer images than its APS-C peers.
- 19 Features
- 20 Software
- 21 Photographic tests (Noise)
- 22 Photographic tests (Noise)
- 23 Photographic tests (Noise)
- 24 Photographic tests (Dynamic Range)
- 25 Photographic tests
- 26 Compared to...
- 27 Compared to...(JPEG)
- 28 Compared to...(JPEG)
- 29 Compared to...(JPEG)
- 30 Compared to...(JPEG)
- 31 Compared to...(RAW)
- 32 Compared to...(High ISO)
- 33 Compared to...(Resolution)
- 34 Conclusion
- 35 Samples
|Sophisticated construction by the nature by Orchideon|
|After the Rain by Flor Tempra|
from Macro - Something Pink
|Asilah by Limburg|
from Cozy Corners
Tamron calls it an 'ultra-telephoto,' and for good reason: this lens offers a massive 27-600mm equivalent zoom range. But is it sharp?
It started with a great idea and a slick promotional video, and ended with the company headquarters being raided by the San Francisco District Attorney’s office. Wired reports on Lily, the selfie-drone maker that never got off the ground.
With card readers disappearing from MacBooks, USB-C card readers are now a necessity. Macworld's helpful guide compares five models and decodes the current mess of card speeds and certifications.
A Sony a7S II mounted on the outside of the ISS' Japanese Experiment Module (KIBO) for the last seven months has sent back some impressive 4K video and stills.
A Federal judge has refused to throw out a copyright case against controversial artist Richard Prince, who used an image by photographer Donald Graham in an exhibition.
Sony has teased its customers with news of an upcoming announcement: it will soon take the wraps off a new CineAlta motion picture camera, one sporting a 36x24mm sensor.
QuikStories is integrated into the latest version of the GoPro app and automatically creates 'stories' using the video clips you've shot during a day.
Journalists photographing a protest in the US Capitol building claim they were told by Capitol Police to delete photos and videos of arrests.
The Meizu Pro 7 Plus secondary display can be used for music playback, date and weather-related information, or as viewfinder when taking selfies with the rear cameras.
Nikon is marking its 100th anniversary in many ways, including the creation of a new scholarship program for 'future visual creators' in the USA and Canada.
Take one Digital ELPH (or IXUS), rotate it vertically, add a fully articulating LCD and a lens with a camcorder-like focal length, and what do you get? Why, the Canon PowerShot TX1, of course. In this week's Throwback Thursday we revisit Canon's one-of-a-kind hybrid stills/video camera.
Just in case there was any doubt in your mind, here's the definitive video proof that yes, a $50,000 cinema camera beats the pants off a $50 camcorder in a side-by-side test.
Photographers who fly frequently in the US may want to finally invest in that TSA Pre-check status: in standard security lines, cameras and all other electronics larger than a smartphone will need to be placed in a separate bin for screening.
Images have appeared which claim to show Nikon's forthcoming D850 DSLR, the development of which was announced this week. If genuine, the pictures indicate that the D850 will offer illuminated controls and a tilting LCD screen, but no built-in flash.
To celebrate the Daguerreotype Achromat 2.9/64 lens' successful Kickstarter campaign, Lomography has announced a chrome-plated version of the lens in Nikon and Canon DSLR mounts.
Nikon just released four new firmware updates, adding features and fixing bugs in the D600, D610, D750 and the KeyMission 80.
It probably hasn't made your landscape photography bucket list just yet, but there's a good reason to visit Idaho. Here are 9 must-visit locations in this beautiful state.
Oops... Adobe accidentally leaked their unfinished Lightroom-powered cloud-based photo editor 'Project Nimbus' to some Creative Cloud users yesterday.
Storm chaser and award-winning photographer Mike Oblinski just released his latest time-lapse, and it is absolutely stunning.
Looking to level up your video capture capabilities without buying a whole new camera? Blackmagic's Video Assist 4K is well worth considering, despite a few flaws and its lack of 4K/60p support.
We're big fans of Fujifilm's fast-growing GFX system, and the GF 110mm F2 lens is no exception. Positioned as the system's classic portrait lens, its optics are just as impressive with non-human subjects as well.
Nikon turns 100 years old today, and the company is celebrating with a wacky music video, some tributes to its history, and a new vision presented by president Kazuo Ushida.
Phottix just released the Premio Parabolic Umbrellas series, replacing their Para-Pro line with a stronger, deeper and better made set of parabolic umbrellas.
The Moto Z2 is Motorola's first dual-camera smartphone and, compared to its predecessor, comes with a number of improvements and new camera features.
Researchers at Stanford have revealed a new '4D camera system' built for robots. The system is based on the same light field tech that allowed Lytro cameras to refocus images after they were taken.
If you want 'beautiful rendition' from your lenses, follow this simple rule: only buy classic low-element prime lenses with lead glass elements—everything else is junk.
In an interview with CNBC, Leica Chairman Andreas Kaufmann said he dreams of a 'true Leica phone,' and hinted at what's next for the Leica and Huawei partnership.
Wildlife and nature photographer Peter Mather tells the story behind this exceptional shot of a mama grizzly and her cub searching for salmon in Yukon, Canada.
Popular YouTube channel TastyTuts has put together this 33-video Beginner's Guide to Adobe Photoshop—a godsend for anybody who wants to learn Photoshop from scratch.
The long anticipated replacement for the popular Rode VideoMic Pro is almost ready for shipping. The price of the upgraded VideoMic Pro+ will be £290/$300 when it goes on sale in mid-August.