E-PL1 noticeably louder than a DSLR in live-view quiet mode

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by 996gt2, Nov 18, 2010.

  1. 996gt2

    996gt2 Mu-43 Regular

    42
    Oct 27, 2010
    After shooting several theater shows and speaking events with my PL1, I've noticed that its shutter sound is distinctive and quite loud (comparable to my Canon 5D). Is there any chance of Olympus or Panasonic implementing a "quiet" mode on these cameras?

    Most modern DSLRs have a "silent" mode when used in live-view, and since these Micro 4/3 cameras are full-time live view anyway, why not implement the option of a quiet mode?

    Edit: Added a video I made comparing the 7D and E-PL1 shutter sounds (7D is used in live-view quiet mode):
    [ame="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_wvNBrn_gE"]YouTube - 7D vs. E-PL1 Shutter Sound[/ame]
     
  2. goldenlight

    goldenlight Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 30, 2010
    Essex
    John
    I've never understood why they need to be so noisey. I think the shutter on my Pen makes more noise (or at least as much) than an E-1, and that's without a mirror slapping around. Perhaps it's a marketing thing, in the belief that people upgrading from a compact will expect to hear the sound of a "real" camera. :confused:
     
  3. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    The E1 is the quietest DSLR ever made (as far as I know). I compared my E1, E3 and E-P2, all on a timber table, pointed at an overhead light and set the 12 sec timer to compare the shutter noise. The E3 was by far the noisiest of the lot with its metallic clack. The E1 and E-P2 were very close, with perhaps the E1 slightly more subdued because of the mass of the body and lens, compared to the E-P2.

    So then I compared the E-PL1 to the E-P2, using the CV 75mm f1.8, to make things even. The E-PL1 is louder than the E-P2, but not a great deal and it's the tone that is mainly different, once again because of less mass and body damping. I don't have a 5D to compare against, but I'm surprised that it's as loud as a 5D.

    Cheers

    Ray
     
  4. alessandro

    alessandro Mu-43 Regular

    153
    Jan 29, 2010
    Till the advent of the "electronic shutter", no good ways to have a silent m4/3: body is too small and a "quiet mode" wouldn't be quiet: to take a shot the shutter have to be closed, opened and closed again. With a quiet mode you could just save the 4th movement (re-open to re-enable live view).
    And perhaps making a sophisticated, high spec, light shutter using exotic materials would cause much higher prices.
     
  5. 996gt2

    996gt2 Mu-43 Regular

    42
    Oct 27, 2010
    Added a sound comparison between the two. The 5D is louder, but the PL1 has its own very distinctive shutter sound that I wouldn't exactly call "quiet" especially considering it has no mirror. The PL1 is definitely louder than most DSLRs when used in their live view "quiet mode."
     
  6. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Ray, not Oz
    I don't think there is any real surprise that the m4/3s cameras can be louder than a DSLR used in live view mode. Remember, these cameras have a real shutter in them and the body is much smaller and of lighter construction, with less mass to absorb the sound of the shutter, so they will sound different.

    What you need to do, is place each camera on a table or such, set the timer and move away a distance that represents your position in a shooting environment and find out how loud the shutter really appears to your subjects and surrounds. You'll probably find that the sound dissipates rather rapidly.

    Cheers

    Ray
     
  7. Boyzo

    Boyzo Mu-43 Top Veteran

    784
    Mar 3, 2010
    I think this is subjective and personally I find the Pens quiet the GF1 is in fact a little noisier while my L1 DSLR the noisiest.
    But NOTHING like my Minolta SLR which really Clacks
    I doubt the 5D2 is quiet (could be that FF frame Aura) :biggrin::rofl: like driving a Hummer:wink:
     
  8. minh0204

    minh0204 Mu-43 Rookie

    15
    Apr 17, 2010
    Last week I was strolling along South Bank, London and I saw a guy with an M9. Of course I followed him! To my surprise when he snapped the photo I could hear CLEARLY the shutter clicks from nearly 15ft away. The recock was a tad harder to detect because it fitted the ambient noise.

    So I guess it's all subjective in the end. Each person has a different perception of how a shutter should sound like. I was quite used to the trailing, high pitched shutter sounds from the older E510 so the Pens sound really quiet to me.

    But really it's a shame they could not get a more quiet shutter in the Pens. Seems like for us a discreet shutter sound is really desirable. Some people who want the world to know they have a "real" camera might disagree :cool:
     
  9. 996gt2

    996gt2 Mu-43 Regular

    42
    Oct 27, 2010
    I made a video comparing the shutter sound of the Canon 7D in its live-view quiet mode to the sound of the E-PL1.

    The 7D is noticeably quieter when used in the live-view quiet mode. This seems very strange to me, since a DSLR in live-view mode operates much like the PL1...the mirror is taken out of the equation since it is flipped up all the time in live view.

    [ame=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_wvNBrn_gE]YouTube - 7D vs. E-PL1 Shutter Sound[/ame]
     
  10. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    Midwest
    Paul
    Considerig the amount of damping material surrounding the shutter in each of the cameras, I can hardly tell the difference to be honest. I think your senses are partly being tricked because the sounds/operation are spread out in liveview on the dslr vs the Olympus, since liveview on dslrs is generally a slow process (not with my k5 though). Speaking of which, you aren't going to find a quieter shutter than the k5, it is quiet and reassuring, like a warm knife through butter!
     
  11. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    Also, this doesn't sound true to me.
    Surely "quiet" is hugely different to "silent", and the only thing not making a sound in live-view may be the mirror ... so can you explain what you wrote here?
     
  12. Linh

    Linh Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 14, 2009
    Maryland, US
    Partially this. My GF1 is higher pitched than my brother's GH1. I can only gather it's because there's a bit more dampening in the GH1 because of the body size.
     
  13. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    Oh how we forget. If you happen to have an old Konica SLR take that out and give it a whirl. Now THAT is loud.
     
  14. minh0204

    minh0204 Mu-43 Rookie

    15
    Apr 17, 2010
    I read somewhere saying that all micro fourthirds camera shutters work in the same way. There are 3 phases:

    (1)When you trip the shutter the shutter closes and the LCD goes dark.
    (2)Then the double curtain runs across the shutter to give you the correct exposure. At the end of this phase, the entire sensor area is covered by the 2nd curtain.
    (3) The curtain recocks immediately, exposing the entire shutter for live-view feed.

    Looking at those phases, the loudest, longest phase is number (3).

    In Canon's liveliew, you can delay the third phase by keeping the shutter button pressed. In all four thirds and micro fourthirds, phase (3) IMMEDIATELY follows phase (2), giving the impression of a very noisy shutter. I'm not sure if this is an intended design specification, but in every fourthirds/microfourthirds camera the shutter operates in this same way. You cannot separate the shutter's phases to reduce the amount of noise at one moment. Like the way a double-tap delivers more penetration. That makes the camera appears very noisy

    The amount of damping material is another story. But honest i can think of only 2 scenarios where quiet shutter gives a clear advantage. One is conference, performance and such, and you have a blimp for that. Two is candid street, but a smaller camera has a much better visual advantage.

    My 2 cent :D
     
  15. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    Northumberland
    :eek:
    Like what?
     
  16. 996gt2

    996gt2 Mu-43 Regular

    42
    Oct 27, 2010
    I meant to say quiet mode. Basically, a DSLR in live-view quiet shooting operates similarly to a micro 4/3 cam because the mirror ir permanently flipped up and the shutter is the only thing left to make noise.

    I wish Oly or Panasonic would enable a quiet shooting mode. It would be very useful for street photography or indoor events in a quiet room.