Considering a switch

dixeyk

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I am considering moving to a Panasonic body. I have an EPL-1 with VF2 and I like it quite a lot. I am using it to do some small project work I have and I am thinking of moving to a Panasonic body for better video (the small projects have a good deal of video and I can't afford having multiple bodies). The project work is tied in with a much larger initiative I am working on that will hopefully turn into doctoral research so it's pretty important (to me at least). So far the video from the EPL-1 has been fine but I have started to see it's limits in some of the stuff I've done. I can see where it might be problematic down the line.

Additionally, I may be fast approaching unemployment (They've announced significant job cuts at the university I work for and being at the bottom of the seniority pole means I likely have a small window that I can make any kind of purchases in).

I have always shied away from Panasonic bodies because I used to shoot almost exclusively with legacy lenses and IBIS was a big deal. Vision problems have forced me to move largely to AF so it's less of an issue. I have a Panasonic 20 and Olympus 14-42 and 40-150. I REALLY like the beautiful JPEGs that I get from the EPL-1 but I suppose I can get used to shooting RAW. Since I do not like working with the rear LCD and from my limited experience with Panasonic m43 cameras the external VF is much less stellar than the Olympus VF2 so I figured I'd be looking at something like a used G2 or GH1 as opposed to the GF1 or GF2 (can't afford a GH2).

Thanks for any suggestions.
 

shoturtle

 
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Additionally, I may be fast approaching unemployment (They've announced significant job cuts at the university I work for and being at the bottom of the seniority pole means I likely have a small window that I can make any kind of purchases in).
This line should tell you to hold off on any changes. Save your cash up. Really rough job market at 9% unemployment.
 

dixeyk

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This line should tell you to hold off on any changes. Save your cash up. Really rough job market at 9% unemployment.
Sound advice, that's definitely part of the decision process. IF (notice the all caps) I were to do it, it would have to be something that I could sell what I have and pick up whatever new thing and not have any out of pocket expenses. Perhaps even come out ahead. I noticed the Panasonic blowout of the G2 bodies for $299. I'm pretty sure I could sell the EPL-1+VF2 and come out ahead.

Worst part of the job front is that my wife and I both work for the same university and we're BOTH in danger of getting cut.
 

shoturtle

 
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If you really want to go video, you will want a gh2, at least you will not loose anything in the switch. Going to a G2 or GH1 you do loose the ability to shoot clean after 600iso on your photo side of the projects and personal uses. The GH2 good upto 3200iso. I would go with with the switch I would choose a GH over a G if video what you want to do with it. As you really want the stepless aperture 14-140HD lens.
 

shoturtle

 
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beside that the oly only shoots 720 and mpeg, what is the other limitations your are running into with video?
 

dixeyk

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If you really want to go video, you will want a gh2, at least you will not loose anything in the switch. Going to a G2 or GH1 you do loose the ability to shoot clean after 600iso on your photo side of the projects and personal uses. The GH2 good upto 3200iso. I would go with with the switch I would choose a GH over a G if video what you want to do with it. As you really want the stepless aperture 14-140HD lens.
You know, the more I think about this the more I think I'll just make do with what I have. I agree that the GH2 is the way to go but I can wait. I have a lot of photography to do before the video hits and I'll know about the job situation in May. I also realized that these are wilderness locations so I don't have any access until the weather changes around here so I might be able to wait it out.

I think sitting tight is wisest. Thanks for the reminder.
 

dixeyk

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beside that the oly only shoots 720 and mpeg, what is the other limitations your are running into with video?
Primarily it was the 720. Ordinarily it would be fine but one of the projects will be played back on a large HD screen (I may try to talk them out of that) so 720 is not ideal. Most of what I do is podcast size so it's seen on an iPod, iPhone or iPad (sometimes a laptop) 720 is fine. In fact 480 is fine. The MPEG file format is a pain in that it takes up more space but it's a pretty minor annoyance. I suppose I could also use the 720 to my advantage and go for a slightly grainy film look.

...then again I could always rent a 1080 video camera for that one part of the project. It's cheaper than a new camera.
 

shoturtle

 
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rent is the better option I think, using personal stuff for work is not that beneficial to you, hard to ask for reimbursement amount for using your own camera. Rent, you can always have them reimburse you. And a dedicated 1080 pro camcorder does work better then a G2 for video. As the lenses are design for video needs. G2 with a photo lens is not as good of a option.
 

shoturtle

 
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PS does the university you are at have a video department that teach film. If so, you can most likely work on borrowing a HD camcorder from them. All the film students at NYU and NY Film School use the schools equipment when shooting around the city for class projects.
 

dixeyk

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PS does the university you are at have a video department that teach film. If so, you can most likely work on borrowing a HD camcorder from them. All the film students at NYU and NY Film School use the schools equipment when shooting around the city for class projects.
No film program...but I did find out that they have some nice Panasonic P2 camcorders and the manager of the video services department is a good friend so I asked if I could borrow them and he said it would be fine.

That's feeling like a better solution.

Kevin
 

shoturtle

 
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yup, no money out of your pocket, and you have 1080 covered with school property. And you keep you high quality jpegs form the olympus. Sound like the ideal solution.
 

dixeyk

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yup, no money out of your pocket, and you have 1080 covered with school property. And you keep you high quality jpegs form the olympus. Sound like the ideal solution.
Yep, I'm liking the sound of that. Thanks for the good advice. That's one of the reasons I like this board.
 

billzilla

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Going to a G2 or GH1 you do loose the ability to shoot clean after 600iso on your photo side of the projects and personal uses. The GH2 good upto 3200iso.
The G2 can produce quite good results right up to ISO-800, even OOC JPEGs, which aren't that camera's strongest suit.

My D5000 with 35mm 1.8G looked pretty good at ISO-1600 but 3200 is pushing it, even on a decent APS-C sensor. The G2 at 800 is certainly cleaner than the GH2 at 3200... Look at the DPR comparison widget.

That said, I don't think I'd consider buying into something new if unemployment was looming. At least not something along the lines of a GH2, which really is a bit overpriced IMO at the moment. I'd give it a few months to come down a little unless you can get in on EPP pricing (and even then...).
 

arpoador

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Last summer I switched from an E-P2 to a G2, and after a few months I wrote up a (wordy) discussion of the switch over at serious compacts: E-P2 to G2: Some experiential observations

A lot of what I talked about in that thread would apply to a switch from an E-PL1 as well.

It's now been six more months, and I don't regret the switch at all. I use my collection of manual focus lenses more than ever, and have learned to work around the absence of in-body image stabilization. I'm getting a second body now, and I'm going for another Panasonic.
 

billzilla

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Thanks for the link, that'll make a great read for me, having come from an E-PL1 (then diverted to a few Nikon DSLRs) and finally to the G2. The one complaint I have so far is the UI being rather convoluted... Tap this, drag that, menu dive for this other thing. I'll take this over a NEX, but it's lacking the simplicity and straightforwardness of the E-PL1 and its SCP all-in-one menu.
 
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