EP-1 vs. EP-2 vs. GF-1

Discussion in 'Olympus' started by jay_davidson|2, Nov 10, 2009.

  1. I’m looking for a small digital camera that can use all of my old Leica M and Voightlander lenses (with the right adapter). I’d really like a digital version of my old Leica CL, or the Minolta CLE, which I still think is the best camera ever; compact, light, and can take quick shots on the fly.
    Now that the EP-2 is out it seems hardly worth waiting for, just a few more bells and whistles like “art filters” that seem a waste of space. The new viewfinder makes it significantly more bulky, and more like an SLR (which I do not like).
    I am VERY concerned about shutter lag, and have heard some say that the GF-1 is superior in that regard. I think just comparing the specs for shutter lag can be very misleading as in practice a camera with an advertised low lag time may have a shutter mechanism that does not give enough tactile feedback to insure that you know when the pic is being taken. I’d be interested in feedback from those who have actually used the camera over time.
    The EP-2 and GF-1 both sell around $1,200, while the EP-1 can be bought for $750. Plus, the chrome EP-1 just looks cooler.
    So the EP-1 sounds like a no-brainer. What am I missing here?
     
  2. Jay
    What am I missing here?
    I feel you are misunderstanding shutter lag ... none of the cameras have shutter lag which any human can percieve. However the delay introduced in focusing and the camera being forced not to take upon shutter press until focus completion creates the so called shutter lag.
    using any manual focus lenses on any of the cameras mentioned will remove this from the equaiton :)
    Additionally while the accessory finder for the E-P2 may be bulky I read that it is as good as the EVF on the G1 (which I have) which is very good indeed.
    I am searching for a second micro 4/3 camera, I am also considering the 3 you mention. I am beginning to think that the E-P 2 may be my best next choice. Because:
    • when I take snapshots I will probably just as well use the rear screen
    • when I set up on a tripod the extra effort to attach the accessory finder should be no significant effort
    • the articulating finder may be better for me than an articulating screen ... though I'm not sure of that ... one of each would be nicer ;-)
    you say:
    the Minolta CLE, which I still think is the best camera ever; compact, light, and can take quick shots on the fly
    which is interesting as owning and using a Trip 35 for many years I am comfortable to say my G1 does better than that camera. I fully expect that any of the above mentioned 3 would do the same.
    BTW, it seems commonly reported across enough locations that the Panasonic lenses focus faster than the Olympus ones ... which creates a small dilemma for me in price ... you see I would like the panasonic lens, but the Oly body .... I also think the 20mm will be a nicer normal for me.
     
  3. Jay, you do understand that the angle of view of your Leica and Voightlander lenses mounted on these cameras would be 1/2 of that on a film camera. So that a 50mm lens mounted on a micro 4:3 body would have an angle of view about the same as a 100mm lens mounted on your CLE. This may or may not be an issue with you but I had not seen it mentioned.
     
  4. I came to the same conclusion as your final statement, Jay. UPS will deliver my E-P1 today!
     
  5. the e-p2 is out???
     
  6. Thanks for the responses. Yoshio I do understand that the bulk of shutter lag is caused by autofocus, however (to my understanding, and based on responses in this and other forums) simply switching to manual focus will not eliminate lag. These is still a lag - and it can be significant especially if you are doing action photography.
    Thanks John, I do realize that the lenses will be effectively doubled in length. I'm planning on using my Voightlander 15mm and 21mm and a Leica 35mm summilux.
    Any thoughts from people who have already been using these cameras?
     
  7. These is still a lag - and it can be significant especially if you are doing action photography.​
    None of the mFT cameras are ideal for action photography. I have a GH1 which focuses as fast as an entry level dSLR. However once the shutter is triggered there is a black out time during which the VF is inoperable. This limits how fast you can take a second shot.
     
  8. Yep, and if you use the burst mode and pan while trying to follow a moving subject, live view is turned off for the duration. You see quick reviews of what you just took, but that does you no good in keeping up with where the subject now is. You can try and guesstimate and follow, but the tighter you try framing the subject, the more problematic that process is.
    No camera with an electronic finder is ready yet for action photography.
     
  9. Jay
    I disagree ... even my old Nikon Coolpix cameras had no human appreciable lag when set to manual. I can only assume you have never tried this.
    The other points about using these cameras for action are dead on target, and the only way (assuming 3 fps was enough for you) would be to use an optical clip in finder to allow tracking. Less than ideal. I would prefer something faster myself. I was spoiled by my EOS 630 which was a fast camera (both AF and film advance), only superceded by the EOS 1 and later of that series really. The RT was built on the same body and was fast too.
    For shooting action I really recommend 5 fps min and fast AF
     
  10. The shutter lag that Leica people are concerned about is actually the delay of the image on the display. There IS a lag between the moment of the sensor capturing the image and that the image is processed and displayed on LCD/EVF. The actual shutter lag should be of less concern and, as Yoshio pointed out, the human lag should be more influential.
    In order to get rid of the affect of the lag of the displayed image, you need to use an additional optical viewfinder with the appropriate angle of view.
     
  11. I am pondering the same questions, having used a couple of GRDs and a DP-1 as my small digicams while having a fairly full 4/3 system based on E-3, as well as a Leica M6 with three lenses. Here is my thinking. I do not want to buy an electronic viewfinder. I do not mind if the camera can have one, but I have no intention of buying one. For fast casual shots, I much prefer a separate optical finder. With a fixed 40 mm equivalent lens, there is no problem finding a suitable finder to fit any of these three cameras. For occasional tripod based landscapes, I can use the rear screen so no need to get a EVF for that either. Sigma DP-1 is very slow, much slower than even the E-P1. This is a price we have to pay for a small camera with a large sensor. There is just no way you can get the speed of a good DSLR in such a small package. Otherwise why would E-3, D3 and 1D be such big and heavy beasts? I have a lot of lenses that I can fit on that camera, and I already have a m4/3 to Leica M adapter (bought it in Japan when happened to find one second hand, even before I got a m4/3 body). I do want the Panasonic 1.7/20 lens. I do not want a zoom, or the much weaker Zuiko 17mm. When the E-P1 came out, I was very tempted but decided to wait for some reviews and for some other announcements. Reviews were not that positive, causing me to delay further. Now that both GF-1 and E-P2 are out, the reviews for E-P1 have suddenly turned much more positive. Maybe the truth is starting to come out, and the reviewers have got a reality check. I awaited Olympus to come up with the new model they had already mentioned, but was disappointed that it basically only adds electronic viewfinder to it. Seems like there is another Olympus model still under development, but how long should one wait? GF-1 looked positive and is in some ways better but has also some shortcomings. For me, the main one is that most 4/3 lenses do not autofocus on it. So, what am I going to do? I will be in Japan again in a couple of weeks time. I will see if I can find an E-P1 second hand with no lens and a Panasonic 1.7/20 lens, also second hand. Japanese are great at jumping in with both feet when something new comes out, and then dumping their gear on the second hand market as soon as they get bored with it or something different comes along. I am sure the E-P2 causes a lot of clutter on the second hand E-P1 market in Japan. If I cannot find this combo, I will most likely get the GF-1 with the 1.7/20 lens as a package. This is readily available now in Japan, second hand. For me, paying more for E-P2 makes no sense at all. But your criteria, of course, may be entirely different.
     
  12. Ilkka,
    if you are planning to buy Panasonic G series cameras in Japan, keep in mind that the Japanese domestic versions do not allow to set the laguage other than to Japanese (more precisely, Japanese version of the firmware has no menu to select language). You could buy international versions at tax-free shops and there might be some second-hand international versions, but you'd better make sure.
     
  13. Thanks, I need to check that when buying. I have bought a few cameras in Japan and normally one can choose Japanese and English. If it is Japanese only, then I would certainly not choose that model/make. I find it a bit silly considering the large number of foreigners living in Japan.
     
  14. Ilkka
    This is a price we have to pay for a small camera with a large sensor. There is just no way you can get the speed of a good DSLR in such a small package.​
    I disagree entirely ... there is simply no reason to support that ... what I agree with is that there are presently no marketed options that provide such. And there is clearly some compromise required. But essentially what you are saying is equivalent to a rangefinder can not have a motor drive or be used for sports . Do not confuse what is marketed with what is possible
    Otherwise why would E-3, D3 and 1D be such big and heavy beasts?​
    because of other criteria such as "grips" which people seem to adore (making their cameras more macho I suspect in many cases) and prisms and the need to flip mirrors up and down fast ...
    Now that both GF-1 and E-P2 are out, the reviews for E-P1 have suddenly turned much more positive.​
    and as the reviewers pull their heads out of the personal biases ...
    Maybe the truth is starting to come out, and the reviewers have got a reality check.​
    exactly my view ...
    Olympus model still under development, but how long should one wait?​
    exactly ... and there will likely always be 'another under development ' this is why I jumped in and bought the G1 ... perhaps the among the first sold in this country.
    GF-1 looked positive and is in some ways better but has also some shortcomings. For me, the main one is that most 4/3 lenses do not autofocus on it.​
    or on any of the m4/3 actually
    So, what am I going to do?​
    well I can't answer that, but I can tell you what I did ... personally as an SLR user and one who grew up on rangefinders I took to the G1 like a duck to water ... I get all the advantages of an SLR (such as through the lens focusing for telephoto and macro) and all the advantages of my old range finders (compact and light) with interchangeable lenses
    the reality of size difference between the G1 - GF-1 - EP-x is minor
    I might be quite tempted to get the EP-2 as my 'second body' as I really think that for the tripod work the EVF it comes with is great, the rear screen would be enough for framing and I could generally point with it over my face (or buy an optical viewfinder, which I suspect you may already have ...)
    I will be in Japan again in a couple of weeks time. I will see if I can find an E-P1 second hand with no lens and a Panasonic 1.7/20 lens, also second hand. Japanese are great at jumping in with both feet when something new comes out, and then dumping their gear on the second hand market as soon as they get bored ...​
    well ... there are as many buyers aware of this and the resale prices are often just as high (encouraging people to dabble and sell :)
    For me, paying more for E-P2 makes no sense at all. But your criteria, of course, may be entirely different.​
    of course ... but if you consider the price difference between the E-P2 and 1 perhaps the plug in EVF may be better than you think ... unless you are at that stage of your life when everything you know and how you work is fixed and inflexible
    ;-)
     
  15. So, just how usable/responsive is the EP-1 in old school, hyperfocal focused, clip on optical VF, decisive moment kind of shooting? Used like this, does the camera get out of its own way?
    For me, the lens is likely to be the Panasonic 20mm f1.7. However, I've been debating hard about the body, whether the GF1 or EP1. I've concluded that the in-body image stabilization is really worthwhile, so Olympus most likely is it.
     
  16. Robert
    So, just how usable/responsive is the EP-1 in old school, hyperfocal focused, clip on optical VF, decisive moment kind of shooting?​
    an important issue to consider with the 'prime lenses' is that they are focus by wire AF, as far as I know not all focus by physical extension moved by a motor and reset between power off and power on. I do not have the two prime lenses to test, but this is the case with my zoom.
    So, if you put a mechanical lens on (like my FD 28mm or my OM 21mm which are effectlvely "normal") then it will be totally predictable and operate perfectly as you expect ... in fact this is often how I use my G1 :)
     
  17. As Yoshio pointed out, the focal distance setting of 20/1.7 is reset when you switch the camera (G1, in my case) off even in MF mode. So far as I'm aware, none of m4/3 lenses have either distant or DOF scale, so they should not be suitable for zone focusing. Older MF lenses will do for you. If I would do zone focusing with wider angle of view, I would consider Cosina/Voigtländer 15mm/f4.5.
     
  18. Tanaka-san, whoa... I just voiced MY opinion. I am entitled to MY opinion, am I not. You have yours, and I respect that. Therefore I will not start defending each point I made and you then refuted. I would just like to ask you one question: are you seriously saying that Canon/Nikon/Sony (the three leading digital camera manufacturers today) COULD MAKE a near full frame 12-15Mp camera that was the size of a GF-1/DP-2/E-P2 and had as fast focusing and shooting speed as 1D/D3/A900 but they just do not want to make one? Sigma DP-1 was a great idea but took a lot longer to come to market and had some serious shortcomings when it did. The same thing has happened will ALL successive small cameras with big sensors. Yes, they are getting better. I am sure they will be getting better still in the future. One key deisgn issue with all these present cameras is the need to keep the shutter open for viewing, and needing to close it prior to exposure. This causes delay. Also, the small physical size of the bodies makes it impossible to include all the electronic components that are inside big DSLRs that allow them to operate faster, for example the dual processors in Sony A900. In future, other design concepts will be devised that overcome some of these limitations.
    And yes, I have used cameras with electronic viewfinders, also good ones. I agree that they are getting better. But I still don't like them. I prefer to use something else. Please let me. It is my money. Arigato.
     
  19. Illka
    I thought the content of my reply was conversational, and expressing my own opinion. I don't see how I suggested you could not have your opinion ... can you point it out? I can see that I agreed with your points on a few places, and extended them in others. I am sorry if your understanding of conversation is to each nod in agreement. I intended to engage in discussion. I regret that I did not understand your sensitivities.
    To answer your question cautiously and with as much sensitivity as possible:
    I would just like to ask you one question: are you seriously saying that Canon/Nikon/Sony (the three leading digital camera manufacturers today) COULD MAKE a near full frame 12-15Mp camera that was the size of a GF-1/DP-2/E-P2 and had as fast focusing and shooting speed as 1D/D3/A900 but they just do not want to make one?​
    yes, I am saying that, perhaps not "was the size" but "near the size". Further there seems no reason to me from an engineering standpoint that they could not also offer a fully coupling electronic adaptor (working exactly as does the existing life size extender) to enable them to manufacture a smaller flange distance range of lenses (thus capitalizing on the smaller body) and giving access to the full range they currently have operating as it does.
     
  20. Another question (if anyone's still reading this); Given that the Leica lenses on these cameras will have their effective focal lengths doubled, does that mean that their depth of focus will be affected as well? So an adjustment will have to be made on the DOF scale if you want to do zone focusing?
    Thanks for the lively discussion!
     
  21. Hello Jay
    yes, the DoF scales (which like the pirates creed are more a like a guideline really) will vary (even in 35mm film work depending on cropping and magnification too). I feel it is well represented here :
    When any lens of a focal length F is mounted on a Four Thirds body and stepped down to aperture (F-number) A, its effective depth of field will be the same as that of a lens with focal length 2F stepped down to aperture 2A, and working on a film camera.
    This is an ugly, but accurate, sentence, and I wasn't able to make it any friendlier. Just in case, read it once again. Slowly.
    further reading here
    In practice, you can get portraits like this (of my friends daughter) with a 50mm
    [​IMG]
    hope that helps
     
  22. After all the dust settles and the hype is over, we begin to see the limitations of these m3/4 systems. Since I plan to use these as a back-up or travel camera, the speed of the AF is not critical. I thus love the idea that E-P1 has IBIS so all the lenses I own can be used on this camera with IS and I love the fact that its JPEGs are very nice so I no longer need to spend time developing the RAW. I also like the new EVF which is articulated thus allowing one to take pictures from odd angles. But no IBIS during video?
    I have a GH1 with the 14-140 kit lens. In this set up one can no longer see the "compact" form factor that these cameras are supposed to offer. In fact to use the form factor as a major selling point, GF1 is most frequently shown with the 20/1.7, but if you put the 14-140 or 45-200 on it, it will no longer look small. The 20/1.7 is made to be small. However to make up for the "loss in DOF" (so to speak), wouldn't it be nice if this prime were f1.4 or f1.2? How big would this lens be if it were a f1.2 lens? So far neither Olympus nor Panasonic offers a fast standard zoom (similar to the Nikon 17-55/2.8), and one can only imagine that such a lens will be very big and heavy to negate the advantage of the small camera body. At the end of the day, we will see that the m3/4 is still a compromise. If you want a small system, you need to accept the compromises in IQ, AF speed, burst rate, etc ...
     
  23. Is it not blindingly obvious that m3/4 is a compromise?
    Medium format is a compromise
    35mm is a compromise
    Damn, the optics of the Hubble Space Telescope are a compromise.
    What do you want the camera to do, what are the minimum specs and how much can you pay?
    Let's not complain about a mini cooper not being a ferrari.
    I will be getting the ep2 now we have a viewfinder. I very rarely shoot action shots so the concerns here don't bother me. If I was paying my bills taking action shots then I would be buying something else.
    I want something to truly replace my OM4ti. Something small. Something beautiful. Something with zuiko optics. Olympus have given me the digital PEN. Until the Digital OM arrives - if it arrives - that will have to do.
     
  24. I changed my mind about the EP-1, not based on anything besides my own preferences, even though the things that bothered me about it when I bought and returned it are still there (shutter, aperture, focus adjusting). So I'll take the plunge again. Why the change of heart?
    Two things happened:
    1.) I went out on a trip with my ancient Canon G7, and there was a perspective adjustment--same handling complaints, only worse when I stopped to think about it, plus it has the inherent limitations of a small-sensor P&S. A couple of fairly disagreeable ones, I find.
    2.) The GF1 came out, and looked great, except that the Jpegs are said to have a color shift, and it doesn't have IBIS, plus, its ergonomics has some issues of its own in the very same respects.
    3.) I added one other: the EP-2 came out, and wasn't much different and I don't want an EVF, so, I decided the EP-1 plus the Panny 20mm f/1.7, which happens to match my film camera's view angle, is about as much as I can reasonably expect to have available at this time for what I'd like to be doing.
    For me, it makes more sense to adopt the half-full outlook: it's such an improvement over the P&S, and also isn't a big thing to carry around, so the drawbacks just don't matter as much as they did at first.
    Regarding the focus reset issue, I agree completely that is not nice, but maybe it's not that serious of a problem unless you are really in a hurry, in which case maybe one might leave the camera on when appropriate and just put in one of the extra batteries you will probably be carrying around with you anyway...that is, sooner than you will otherwise also be doing. I keep thinking: glass half full. :)
     
  25. Good morning Brian
    I understand your G7 journey. I still use a Nikon CP5000 which produces a generally pleasing image quite able to print to A4 size and satisfy all but the most discerning who leave nose prints on my paper. The RAW file needed for this however it takes 40 seconds on a standard x8 CF media card to write that ... during which time it remains locked. This is something which has always bothered me ... but then everything is usually some sort of compromise.
    Even though I had a Canon EOS 10D and 20D until I bought my G1 I was still actively using the Nikon as a travel / snapshot camera because it was lighter and more versatile without heavy additional pieces like a Tokina 12-24mm lens . In this way my CP5000 exceeds my G1. While both have a similar standard zoom range, the CP does 2cm focus distance (nice for macro) and much like your G7 my CP is a ruggedly constructed camera which I expect will remain operational well into the future. I can poke my CP into a backpack side netting and fear nothing. The same is not true for the G1 (although may be for the E-Px) because the lens is rather more obtrusive and it feels less 'tough'.
    I find that already the print is wearing off the buttons on my G1 which reinforces my opinion that the camera was a little prototypic. This is not a negative for me as I feel that I got excellent value for money in the features and components which are in fact the real guts of the camera.
    Unlike my CP I can add simply 2 lenses into my bag (50mm and 200mm) and one set of extension tubes. This extends the functionality of the G1 to give me macro as powerful as the Coolpix (if somewhat different in angle of view and working distance, it is much more 35mm esque) while not remarkably increasing its burden. In this way it is still far more compact than the 10D would be with lenses of similar angles of view (requireing a 100mm and a 400mm).
    So for me the G1 offers a compact and carry-able package such as my Olympus Trip 35 was, producing images of high enough quality to make very satisfactory 50cm wide prints and at the same time can become the core of a more versatile image making system. It is exactly the sort of digital camera I wish I had when I was a professional product photographer.
     
  26. Good morning, Yoshio!
    I still have my CP 5000, and it does take fine pictures...although I have to add that it was a difficult camera for me to use owing to its interface. Very handy, though. In the interface, the G7 has been much easier to use...and it's pretty tough, as proven by the dents on it. And, I can use that wide angle Nikon on it by shortening the Canon lens adapter. Complaints I do have, but I'm not sorry I've had it, all things considered, and now I pass it along to my wife who is more flexible and less fussy. (Not a single complaint in that department! :) !!) Maybe I get to borrow it once in a while...
     
  27. Size is relative. My wife and I went to Ritz in Ala Moana mega shopping center and looked at both the EP-1 and the G-1 and held them. Both seemed relatively small and light to me. We were impressed with the quality of the EVF on the G-1 and the eye control switching of screens. At this moment in time, I think I could easily fall for the G-1. But then I have to buy a couple hundred dollar adapter for use with my FD lenses. And once an FD lens goes on-whoops- there goes the small small factor. Not entirely of course. I also like the G-1's use of the LCD screen. I like the sneak covert thing, Illka, for street shots of people. Inconspicuosity. If one has a few bucks, I would even think one can imagine two micro thirds cameras. OR, wait to see what Epson will deliver in a small electronic viewfinder. That will be a game changer I am thinking. I used to shop in Japan. If nothing else, it is great fun...bring along a local and they will throw in all kinds of accessory stuff I bet, to make the sale...Right Yoshio?
    PS. Ala the Coolpix P 5000. . If I weren't invested in the Nikon Coopix P 5000 with an SB 400 flash and a wide angle adapter, shucks I would go for a G-1 and Cameraquest FD adapter ( I want good quality machine work) in a heartbeat. I do not need super speed in my shooting. That is relative too as said.. I love the Nikon's SB 400 dedicated mini tilt tube flash for the Nikon. A great under appreciated camera for the money. Have to hand it to the folks at Big N. It fits my hand right and built solid. (The tiny Hobbit sized manual is almost written in invisible ink but,hah, - I got it enlarged to 8 X10 so I can now finally learn all the little goodies. )
     
  28. Jay, I would not rush to judgment on the forthcoming EP-2. I am thinking Olympus may sell a bunch of them. It will be first quarter of next year. Not all that long. Image stabilization is nothing to sneeze at in a camera body for legacy lenses I am thinking....but of course you know that already. I like Olympus build quality and lens quality and am plugging for the company I guess. We know they know how to make great professional quality equipment if they choose to compete in the upscale department.
     
  29. That is the big question right now. Up front at least, Olympus is obviously setting their micro four-thirds system up for only the most amatuer type of user with all the slow zooms and, unfortuinately, the underperforming 17mm f2.8 compared to the Panasonic 20mm f1.7. Even the 14-42 kit zoom for the E-P1 suffers compared to the same lens in the DSLR system. Even the lowest quality kit zooms for the DSLR system are excellent. You cannot say that yet about either of the current micro four-thirds Zuikos.
    With no DSLR system to support, Panasonic is the maker to look to for the fastest system build-up, which will give them a considerable advantage in terms of user base in the long haul for this system.
     
  30. then I have to buy a couple hundred dollar adapter for use with my FD lenses.​
    I got several adapters off e Bay for less than $60 and they all work well.
     
  31. On the topic of lens reset when turning on/off the EP-1: go to Menu AF-MF, scroll to Reset Lens, turn off. It still pulls the front lens element back into the barrel, but does not reset to infinity--returning instead to the distance last focused on.
     
  32. On the topic of lens reset when turning on/off the EP-1: go to Menu AF-MF, scroll to Reset Lens, turn off. It still pulls the front lens element back into the barrel, but does not reset to infinity--returning instead to the distance last focused on.
     
  33. Good morning Gerry
    But then I have to buy a couple hundred dollar adapter for use with my FD lenses.
    I find it hard to understand why in this internet age people are unaware they are available for about US$70 ... they are in reality quite smiple things.
    I have bought my FD adaptor from a fellow called Ciecio7 on ebay ... it works very well.
    ( I want good quality machine work)
    I have a friend who is a professional machineist ... he says the work is of highest quality. This is my adaptor. I note that there is effectively some internal light baffling due to the design
    [​IMG]
    besides if you know much about retail you'll know the price they sell for in the shop is not what the maker gets ... but still someone has to support the big retail chains.
     
  34. Jay, the discussion drifted a little bit away from your original post. The thread is some days old, I hope my remark doesn't come too late.
    You wrote, you want a mFT camera mainly to use your 15mm Heliar and a 35mm Summicron. Unfortunately all M-Mount wideangles do not perform very well on micro 4/3. The prices for a used Leica M8 are falling since the M9 was introduced. Surely a better way to get most out of your M-mount lenses.
     
  35. I went through the same deliberations but eventually decided on the Panasonic GF-1 for its faster autofocus. What I especially like about the camera is the face recognition feature which immediately locks on faces to keep them in focus - this may sound like an "amateur" feature but it has proven very useful to me when taking pictures of my kids and dogs who keep moving constantly even if they "pose" for a photograph! Also, I find the flash on the GF1 quite useful (even though it is not very powerful), sometimes it is the only way to get a picture and sometimes it is a good way to balance the exposure. I do not think the shutter lag is excessive - again that's because of the fast autofocus (of course it is not Nikon D3 quick but I have not missed to many pictures because of it, unlike with a number of other compact cameras).
     
  36. Ulrich, thanks for your post. I had not heard that M-mount "wide angles don't perform well on micro 4/3 cameras." Is that your own experience or is there a test or blog somewhere that relates this? It's pretty important info if that's the case. The whole point of this exercise is to use my old lenses.
    BTW I did call a certain seller of M-mount adapters and asked if they impacted lens performance. He almost bit my head off over the phone line, he was that upset. Obviously he disagrees but then again he's selling the adapters.
     
  37. Jay & Ulrich
    for some reason I did not spot the component about :
    You wrote, you want a mFT camera mainly to use your 15mm Heliar and a 35mm Summicron.​
    I should have read more carefully
    Ulrich raises a point there which needs some addressing:
    Firstly with respect to the 15mm and 35mm ... remember that their field of view will be limited to as if they were 30mm and 70mm respectively. I would put forward that the kit 14-45 lens will likely give you equal results on this format
    If I had those lenses (and I have something in the middle a 21mm) I would only use them on full frame as that is where they shine. With respect to 'smearing' issues reported on the 15mm I would suggest that is mainly from the 4/3 system ... which have thicker anti alias filters than on a G1
    I have read that they do well on full frame cameras, for instance from a well respected source :
    I've taped up the mirror of the old Nikon D100 and mounted the 12mm Voigtlander. Although its exit pupil is 28mm from the sensor, it worked surprisingly well. And there's pictures on the web from people who managed to put a 12mm Helier on Canon 5D and 1Ds bodies.
     
  38. anti alias and IR filters from a 4/3 camera
    [​IMG]
     
  39. Jay, sorry that I can't respond immediately, I live in a different timezone.
    Yes, I have tried the 35mm (non ASPH) Summicron on a Pana GF-1 in a shop (providing very good testing conditions). Undoubtedly you can get pictures with it. If you are critical, you need to stop down to f4..f5.6 to get sharp corners. IQ is beaten by the Pana kit zoom. Nothing left from the glory of an exceptional lens. Unfortunately I cannot provide examples as I did not keep the test shots nor buy the GF-1 at that moment.
    There are quite a few forum reports about experiences with different M-mount lenses on mFT. While wide angle lenses up to 35mm do not seem to render great results, the situation is much better with 50mm Summicrons. You can find some opinions and some examples here .
    That said, you still can get usable photos with your M-mount wideangles and a mFT camera - but don't expect a performance that comes near to a Leica. Besides that, the 15mm Heliar becomes the equivalent of a boring slow F 4.5 30mm lens.
     
  40. Greg Chappell , Even the 14-42 kit zoom for the E-P1 suffers compared to the same lens in the DSLR system. Even the lowest quality kit zooms for the DSLR system are excellent. You cannot say that yet about either of the current micro four-thirds Zuikos.​
    really? is the quality lower?
     
  41. The 14-42 kit lens for the DSLR system is excellent. This review of the performance of the micro 4/3rd's version notes a lower performance level compared to the DSLR lens. Most likely too many compromises in order to make it so small.
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/olympusep1/page21.asp
     
  42. that's weird because on the same review the E-P1 shows much better resolution than the e620.
    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/olympusep1/page36.asp
    Now, they say the relevant lens was used, but I can't see what lens?
    If the E-P1 is using a m4/3 lens and the e620 is using a 4/3 lens then regardless of the compromises, it is taking higher resolution shots?
    What gives?
     
  43. If the E-P1 is using a m4/3 lens and the e620 is using a 4/3 lens then regardless of the compromises, it is taking higher resolution shots? What gives?​
    For a pixel peeping review site, the tests aren't particularly rigorous. It's most likely that the particular e620 body and lens used in the review falls at the low end of allowable manufacturing tolerance. Who knows, maybe it's front or back focusing. This is at least a whole class of problems that micro-4/3, by design, doesn't have.
     
  44. William, go back a few pages and look at the JPEG and RAW comparisons and you will see the lens they are using in their camera tests when comparing the E-P1 to the E620 is the Zuiko 50mm f2, so they are using it on the E-P1 with the 4/3rd's to micro 4/3rd's adaptor and the 14-42 kit lens of the E-P1 is not being used. They pretty much use the 50mm f2 Zuiko in all the Olympus body tests because it is probably the sharpest lens Olympus makes.
    The higher resolution of the E-P1 comes down to Olympus using a lower strength AA filter on the E-P1 vs what they have used in their DSLR system to date, but in using the E620 and processing a few thousand files to date it's hard to note any detail being lost to a too strong AA filter. You've got to be a pixel-peeping geek to have what the stronger AA filter of the E620 blocks in terms of additional resolution really bother you.
     
  45. well then by definition do you have to be the same peeping geek to notice the difference in the two lenses?
    I say this because I have been using Zuiko lenses for 20 odd years. And regardless of lens test data I can't really tell the difference between the quality of slides or prints from any of them. And by that I mean a £20 135mm F3.5 or a 50mm F1.2. Can't see the difference at all.
    For example, if I took a picture of the exact same scene at exactly the same time with the m4/3 lens and the 4/3 lens; then printed them both to say, 18", and you were viewing them both from a foot or so away, could you pass the pepsi challenge and say which is which? And could you always tell the difference? Say 100 pictures lined up, could you sort them into two piles?
    And that is a serious question.
    (Because I am might attracted to the small size of the E-P2 (I hike and climb regularly, so small is good. I also take lots of photography in music venues, so small an unintrusive is good too).
     
  46. There are additional comments in the review of the 14-42 kit lens for the E-P1 that say it is pretty soft at 42mm and wide open and, overall, not as consistent across the range, which probably does make no difference at all at f8 as long as f8-11 can be used. I bet your 135 Zuiko isn't worth a darn at f2! They may both take identical images at f5.6, but I know there's a reason why you also own that 50mm f1.2 besides just the focal length.
    Yes, in music venues small is always good idea, but so is speed and good image quality wide open, and as far as unobtrusive goes, many acts here do not allow photography and a bright LCD back gives you away with security at least as quickly (if not quicker) as bringing a camera up to your eye.
     
  47. it's a 135 F3.5. I've taken plenty of shots at that aperture and never thought it was soft. Maybe I'm just not the sort of person to look at big prints under a magnifying glass.
    Out of the thousands upon thousands of slides and prints I've taken over the years, it's a matter of absolute fact that I couldn't tell which aperture was used for each slide (except in the blind obvious cases where the depth of field is so narrow it must have been wide).
    That's why I always liked Zuiko and stuck with Olympus. Ignoring the lens tests I was blissfully ignorant that some people could measure differences in quality over focal ranges and apertures. But then they were taking pictures of test targets I suppose? Taking a portrait and the corner of the hair is slightly soft; or a mountain range and the fluffy clouds are soft at the edges...hmm I never noticed that at all.
    Nice story about why I own the F1.2.
    I had a "bog standard" F1.8 which had an accident involving a cliff and a 100ft drop. I bought a "mint as new and boxed" F1.8 over the internet; and the postman was kind enough to bring a "mint as new and boxed F1.2". Very nice of him. £35.
    Wouldn't the E-P2, with the viewfinder, have an option to switch of the LCD display?
    (btw when I bought the E510 and the 12-60 zuiko I was gutted with the crappy performance. Asked questions about it here. It was terrible. Sent it back to Olympus for testing, and it was returned saying nothing wrong with it. Tried again. Crap. Demanded a replacement, and the replacement was perfect. And I still can't see the moaning about clipped highlights and noise with that camera. Damn, the film I used back in the day was much noisier than anything that camera produces.)
     
  48. Jay - I cannot comment on M mount lenses on M4/3 but with Canon FD lenses I have three observations.
    Firstly to get well focused shots you need the EVF hand held as it is very difficult to focus and stabilize the camera with an MF lens and no tripod (this is especially difficult with fast lenses like the Canon 85mm F1.2 as the DOF of the effective 170mm F1.2 lens is so small). Thus for MF use you should test the EVF carefully.
    In terms of the two bodies the UK magazine Amatuer photographer31st Oct (which has been in print for 125 years) rates the GF1 above the EP-1 in a number of areas - notably build and handling, AF and white balance / color. Their noise and resolution tests also favor the GF1. While I have had issues over the years with some magazines tests (is advertising a factor) I have always found AP to be very good (good enough to subscribe from Canada!) and their tests the most objective around. I have the G1 for my MF lenses and it performs much better than I expected.
    Wide angle MF lenses work fine on M4/3 - there will be some slight vignetting but as the camera only uses the center of the lens this is almost imperceptible. I suspect rangefinder lenses (Biogons etc...) may have significant vignetting as the rear element is so close to the sensor but my wifes Contax G lenses do not adapt to M4/3. The main problem I have had with MF lenses on the m4/3 body is the sun. What happens is the sun is in the lens angle of view (but not necessarily the viewfinders due to the crop) what then appears to happen is the stray light refelects off the sensor, off the uncoated rear lens element and back onto the sensor destroying contrast. The is no real solution to this beyond a price of card and care is framing the shot - it will prevent some shots.
     
  49. "Nice story about why I own the F1.2.
    I had a "bog standard" F1.8 which had an accident involving a cliff and a 100ft drop. I bought a "mint as new and boxed" F1.8 over the internet; and the postman was kind enough to bring a "mint as new and boxed F1.2". Very nice of him. £35."
    Oh, my uh, 50/1.2 got lost in transit from the UK. That must be the one I ordered, send it to me. ;-)
     
  50. I do a lot of street shooting. The Panasonic GF1 is fantastic. Virtually no lag.
     
  51. I have same doubts. I was decided to get GF-1, but than I change my mind and went for Olympus PEN E-P1. Why? I went to to a local photo-store and I tried it. I was concerned about AF, but AF is just fine. There is so much settings for AF that I am sure, you will find one that suits you. I have set my PEN E-P1 in a way, that with one press of a button I can toggle between S-AF/face recognition and MF with pre-focused lens ( and while in MF, able to focus with AE/AF button!). No, E-P1 is not a fast action camera. But nighter is GF-1!
     
  52. At : Jay Davidson
    The response to your question about depth of field is wrong. The D.O.F scales are not affected by sensor size. A given lens has the same depth of field regardless of which camera or sensor it is mounted in front of. The issue with D.O.F arises from the fact that wide angle lenses have a greater depth of field than telephoto lenses and, smaller sensors require a wider lens to achieve equivalent angles of view.
     
  53. I'm not sure if what I write is relevant still or not and you have already made your decision, but at Lens&Shutter here in Victoria they have an ep-1 on sale for $599 with the zoom lens. They also had a leica M adapter so I grabbed my summicron 50mm 2.0 and spent some time trying it out.
    Functionally it's doable. You put the camera in manual mode, check the option about allowing the camera to take pictures without a lens, and it all works. If you press the select button in this mode, you get a focus help that magnifies the centre of the image. Unfortunately, with a 50mm lens that becomes a 100mm on the micro 4/3, there is an incredible amount of vibration in the viewfinder while in this mode. In a hand held mode it is difficult to focus with precision, but it is still doable.
    However, there is something not quite right with the in body stabilization IMO. Almost all images taken inside the store (which wasn't all that dark) still came motion-blurred, even with the lens open all the way.
    My stellar Leica lens only produced marginally (if at all) better results than the cheap-looking and cheap feeling olympus zoom lens, which by the way is very light. It must not have very much glass inside! All images were too soft, on both lenses, even after turning down the filtering. The colors were more washed out with the leica lens, probably due to its less contrasty nature.
    All in all I was underwhelmed by the experience. I went there to buy it at this price but realized that the image quality was simply not there. Again, IMO, you end up with an outfit that is bulky and perhaps not even as good as, say, an LX3 in terms of image quality.
     
  54. The EP-1 and GF-1 are great concepts, allowing us the use of adapters and thus almost all manner of lenses.
    I can't wait for their full-frame cameras with lens interchangeability.
     
  55. Hmm, I thought we might want to revive this old thread. Now that Olympus has finally fixed it's autofocus with a firmware update, it seems that the only differences between the Panasonic and Olympus models come down to handling. And the Panasonic also corrects for CA + distortion in camera, while the Olympus only corrects distortion iirc. But beyond this, are the Panasonic and Olympus models basically about the same now?
     
  56. No not really - the follow is not from first hang usage so take it with a grain of salt:
    olympus: better in camera jpeg engine; in body is, will auto focus 4/3 lenses (such as 14-54) that support contrast focus (I forget if the non-contrast focus lenses such as 12-60 will work)
    panasonic: better auto focus (the firmware improved olympus but it is still not as good), lighter anti-alias filter (the ep-1 is close in this area), tend to be better build.
    There are a few other differences based on specific models some support external evf; the ep-1 does not support rotation and so forth. My biggest gripes are the mush mash with lenses that will and will not work and the relatively expensive adapter. Having played with an ep-1 very briefly I cannot see how I would use it without the evf and with such it is over $700; a bit pricey in my book.
     
  57. panasonic: better auto focus (the firmware improved olympus but it is still not as good), lighter anti-alias filter (the ep-1 is close in this area), tend to be better build.​
    Did you see any published tests for this? I believe DPR's tests claim that Olympus's AF is as good as Panasonic's with the latest firmware update.
    Also I think the P2 adds art fiilters (meh), manual controls in movie mode (meh) and AF tracking, which is useful in some situations, but I find single AF enough for more situations, so it wouldn't be enough to justify the price difference.
    There are a few other differences based on specific models some support external evf; the ep-1 does not support rotation and so forth.​
    Yup, I can probably live w/ the EVF by using a LCD shade instead. What do you mean by rotation? Rotation of the image with an orientation sensor? That can certainly be skipped.
    IBIS on the Olympus certainly makes it the more attractive camera, especially if it's AF is now up to par or at least close enough for most situations.
     

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