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Advantage of EM1 MKII Over EM5 MKII

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by runner girl, May 18, 2019.

  1. runner girl

    runner girl Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    400
    Nov 26, 2011
    I have been thinking of upgrading from the EM5 MKII to EM1 MKII - the trade-in/trade-up deal is enticing. For those who have had both what major benefits did you realize? And for those with small hands - was the larger size of the EM1 MKII an issue?
     
  2. betamax

    betamax Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    470
    May 7, 2011
    Illawarra, NSW, Australia
    Alan
    I upgraded last November when it looked like there was never going to be an E-M5 mkIII.

    I immediately liked the improved sensor performance. Shooting at LOW iso can produce some noticeably cleaner images. Tracking AF is better, though I don't have a great need for it. And battery life is a little better provided you set the right display saving settings. Most of all, I liked that I could set the control dials to control both ISO and aperture (when shooting in Aperture Priority mode)- something I can't do on the E-M5 without flicking that damn lever.

    The other benefits - twin SD cards, better buffer etc aren't high on my list of 'must haves'. They are nice to have for sure.

    I do however like 'small' gear, and where possible prefer to lug around the plastic light lenses over the pro zooms. When I do bring the pro lenses, I can attach the grip to the E-M5 and it doesn't feel as comfortable as the E-M1. But it feels good. I can't detach the grip on the E-M1, ever, and so you can't get that minimalist look or feel when shooting with the pancakes. I wouldn't call it a 'big' camera. But I can't make it smaller, like I can with the E-M5.

    It's a worthy upgrade, but if you prefer the E-m5.2 form factor, and find yourself prefering to shoot without the grip, then it might be better to wait and see what the E-M5 mk3 brings.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  3. runner girl

    runner girl Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    400
    Nov 26, 2011
    Thanks for the input. That is just wha5 I was looking for. It would be nice to know what the EM5 MKIII will have for features.
     
  4. martink111

    martink111 Mu-43 Regular

    77
    Oct 31, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    I was actually pretty conflicted about it at first. I did get the opportunity to upgrade to an EM1 Mark II when my em5 Mark II went in for my extended warranty SquareTrade repair. At the time, it looked very likely that they would simply cash it out so I used the opportunity to buy an EM1 Mark II after having sold a couple of lenses and saving my lunch money for a while. However, they ended up repairing my camera after all and sending it back so now I have both an em5 Mark II and an EM1 Mark II.

    They really are different beasts. The deeper grip and larger size of the e-m1 make it much more suited for bigger lenses and especially if you have any 4/3 lenses. It is amazing what the new camera can do with my old 50-200. However, when working with the small prime lenses such as the 12 F2 or the 45 F 1.8, you will find the em5 to be a better match (especially if you have the silver on silver). At the end of the day, the way it works out for me is I use my EM5 plus smaller lenses (primes and 75-300) as my mountain biking kit or whenever I want something less intrusive. The EM1 is more high performance- birding, hiking or travelling. One of the things that is convenient about this system is that whether you are shooting with the mark-1 em5, the Mark II em5 or the Mark II EM1, the end result pictures are of almost the same quality... It's more like the film days where the performance is what you're paying for- kind of how a film Rebel and an AE-1 will give the same shot if you have the same lenses. Just for fun, I've laid out my three kits below. On the left is "The Expendibles"- my very high-mileage EM5MKI plus my 14-42 and a beat-to-death 45-175. I take it kayaking or the beach where I won't be too terrified of an accidental loss. In the middle is my EM5MKII plus the prime kit (12f2, 17f1.8, 45f1.8 and 75-300). Lightweight, small, yet good performance. All of it fits in a Domke sachel bag with ease. Finally on the right is my serious kit- EM1MKII, 12-40 f2.8, PL 25f1.4, 60f2.8 macro and my 50-200 2.8-3.5 non SWD. Each serves its purpose.
    EBC9774D-4FFB-4836-A57A-1126D24B5DA3.jpeg
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
     
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  5. Avondale87

    Avondale87 Tasmania Subscribing Member

    113
    Apr 20, 2019
    Tasmania
    I've looked and waited with same scenario.
    Just before Christmas bought an EM5II as upgrade to my ver 1.
    I looked at EM1 side by side and the size difference isn't dramatic but I've large hands, not small ones.
    EM5's suffer annoying focus problems on static subjects It's common and there's a much discussed thread here.
    I don't like the extra size the grips add and I've never felt the camera unbalanced by any lens Always hang onto the lens and not the camera but then my large hands help
    Largest (size) lens I've got is 40-150 pro with extender and that virtually lives on the EM5II

    I got the impression from the in store discussion and others I wouldn't see dramatic improvement in image quality from EM5 2 to EM1, and for my use - static birds landscape, close-ups I'd be just as happy with the 5.
    Each to their own.
    Agree be nice to know what EM5 3 is but also WHEN!
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
  6. martink111

    martink111 Mu-43 Regular

    77
    Oct 31, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    Between the greatly improved tracking autofocus, the low ISO performance, and the greatly improved stabilizer, the EM1 is an incredible machine. I'm especially impressed that even at ISO 64, there is still a decent amount of head-room that you can pull down highlights... That was impossible on the old 16-megapixel chip. Also, the high-res mode seems a lot more consistent and detailed.
    The em5 Mark II however is still a vast improvement over the original- at least as far as performance and ergonomics go. Durability has not sold me however. I've had to power dials fail on me in a row due to debris. My original EM5 has been through unspeakable abuse and refuses to die. It is currently serving out the remainder of its sentence as my kayaking rig.

     
  7. betamax

    betamax Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    470
    May 7, 2011
    Illawarra, NSW, Australia
    Alan
    Yes, I was paranoid shooting at low ISO as I thought there was going to be no headroom for highlight correction, but I've noticed there's more room than the E-M5.2.

    I totally agree with the comment about the E-M5 being more expendible. It's cheaper to replace for sure, so I tend to bring it with me more often as I'm not particularly careful. Whereas if I bring the E-M1.2 I'll be more worried that I don't want to put marks or scuffs on it. The E-M1 for me is more for planned events. If I like a location and feel like shooting it again, then I'll come back with the E-M1 and pro zoom lenses. Luckily my E-M5.2 has been pretty reliable (touch wood!).

    Yes, I understand that the E-M1.2 s 1/2 a stop better. They are both very good though.
     
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  8. martink111

    martink111 Mu-43 Regular

    77
    Oct 31, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    It is kind of hard to describe, but even though there is a difference in image quality, the em5 Mark 1 and Mark 2 still do not feel inferior as far as output goes. Whereas when I had my old Canon 30d and then upgraded to the 50, I simply could not use the 30 again afterwards it was just too great of a difference. Same deal when I switched from the gf3 to the em5 originally. The em5 simply blew it out of the water in every regard.

     
  9. martink111

    martink111 Mu-43 Regular

    77
    Oct 31, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    I've noticed a lot of the same annoying issues with the Mark 2 myself. It really stands out once I got it back from servicing that those problems magically disappeared. In particular, my 75 -300 and 45f1.8 seemed to be really hit-or-miss, but once I got it repaired they've worked flawlessly since. The scope of that service was supposed to be to replace the power switch and a broken rotary dial, but I think they ended up replacing the main board as well in the process.

     
  10. Avondale87

    Avondale87 Tasmania Subscribing Member

    113
    Apr 20, 2019
    Tasmania
    Thanks. That's interesting. My 75-300, 12-40 Pro 40-150 Pro all misbehave same on 5.1 & 5.2. You're referring to EM1 2 though but makes one wonder!
    I'll talk to Olympus Au again and see their response.

     
  11. martink111

    martink111 Mu-43 Regular

    77
    Oct 31, 2012
    Orange County, CA
    I was actually referring to the EM5s. The EM1 works perfectly. There is something odd with the EM5MKII. When it works right, it is amazing


     
  12. travelbug

    travelbug Mu-43 Veteran

    319
    Oct 20, 2014
    if i were to upgrade to an em1.2 from an em5.2 how big a difference would i see in low and high iso performance? in terms of noise and pp recovery? can anyone post examples? thanks.
     
  13. Avondale87

    Avondale87 Tasmania Subscribing Member

    113
    Apr 20, 2019
    Tasmania
    Thanks for clarification.
    And yes "when it works right .."
     
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