EM-5 Vs. Gh3

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by peterpix, Mar 29, 2013.

  1. peterpix

    peterpix Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 8, 2010
    So. Maine
    Peter Randal
    Anybody have both? see any difference in image quality? Supposedly have the same sensor, but does one seem better than the other camera? Main Oly advantage seems to be the stabilization and without the grip, its smaller. GH3 has better video (i.e. more video options, tilt out screen, headphone jack). .
  2. ajamils

    ajamils Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 20, 2012
    Richmond, Texas
    I had both an decided to sell OM-D because I hated the ergonomics. Picture wise they are almost equal, except for some minor advantage to OM-D JPEG due it's color but that's nothing that you cannot do in post with GH3 RAW files.
  3. Brian G

    Brian G Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2010
    Victoria, BC
    GH3 for me

    I've owned the EM5 since last summer, and have had a GH3 for a couple of months.

    The EM5 has many good qualities, including of course very good image quality, light weight. I'd also give props to the info mode that shows under & over exposure blinkies, which is very useful. The main flies in the ointment, for me, are:

    1. I use auto exposure bracketing a lot, and getting in and out of this mode in the EM5 is just a horrendous experience, compared to the Panasonics, which are much easier in this regard. MySets to offset this difficulty are only a partial fix, as they force other settings that you may not want at the time, e.g. aperture setting. And you have to hold down a Function button while taking the brackets, which is not conducive to maximum stability.

    2. Ergonomics: absent the purchase of an accessory grip for $300, the EM5 lacks the holding stability (IMO) of the stock GH3. Yes, I know the GH3 costs more, but you get more as well, including the lovely and useful electronic shutter.

    3. From the day I started using the EM5, I had the impression that on the occasional image I was loosing sharpness. I get more consistent results by ensuring that IBIS is off except when absolutely necessary, AND activating the anti-shock delay. Given this, my preference is for a fixed sensor.

    So, for me, the EM5 will be doing an Elvis and "leaving the building". Along with Olympus' many wonderful decisions in this camera, there are a couple that are so blindingly dumb, IMO, that I'd be quite resistant to another Olympus purchase in future. But never say never, I suppose.

    Bear in mind that I shoot only RAW. If you prize Jpegs, popular consensus is that many people prefer Olympus' jpeg renderings. (I find the Olympus bias is a touch toward red, even with "warm color off", and I'd be equally happy with Panasonic's jpegs.) Otherwise, and overlooking the shutter-shock potential due to the EM5's floating sensor, image quality between the cameras is so similar there's not much to talk about.

    This is of course, personal opinion, and there are many happy users of the Olympus cameras. But count me as a Panasonic supporter.:2thumbs:

  4. Dave in Wales

    Dave in Wales Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 5, 2011
    West Wales
    IMVHO the one asset that the OM-D has over other cameras is IBIS.

    There are many things I'd like to change, how long have you got, but I can live with it's foibles because of IBIS.

    Just my 2'ps worth
  5. jloden

    jloden Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2012
    Hunterdon County, NJ
    I have had the GH3 since December, the OM-D EM-5 for a couple weeks now, and the EM-5 is about to go up for sale. I didn't really notice a distinct advantage in image quality for the EM-5 (other than IBIS at slow shutter speeds which isn't a surprise).

    I just honestly could not get along with the ergonomics of the EM-5 even with the additional grip, and I didn't like the EVF, UI, or the overall feel of the camera very much. It just wasn't for me I guess... I couldn't bond with it even though there wasn't anything specifically "wrong" with the camera, and I know it's capable of some superb images.

    Anyway, I wouldn't base a decision on IQ since there's unlikely to be any appreciable differences. I'd focus on features (e.g. video functions for the GH3, IBIS for the OM-D) and ergonomics and form factor, as you prefer.
  6. Zanr Zij

    Zanr Zij Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 10, 2012
    I don't have GH3 but I can show you something about the advantages of EM-5:

    - Good looking alone or when combine with many Olym lenses.

    - IBIS: best for tele esp legacy lenses. Easier to match with Olym or Pana/Sigma

    - Smaller and lighter. This is important with me cause I'm want to use everytime, everywhere. I have a small bag for EM-5 + 2 lenses.

    - Not very good about ergonomic, come with grip will be ok. I user L grip (1/2 part ) daily. Of course if come with grip, EM-5 will be same price as GH3.

    - Fake + acceptable focuspeaking combine with IBIS = very usefull for legacy lenses. I own Nex-6 a short time and found that there is no big difference between Nex vs EM-5 about focus peaking so I keep EM-5. I can focus @f1.2 in low light inviroment or with a 300+mm lense easily.

    More : [ame=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ArqBplO8cQ]Focus Peaking on Olympus OM-D E-M5 - YouTube[/ame]

    - Some other features like: weather sealed, comfortable tri-nav ...
  7. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    Since most of the responses completely ignore the question the OP actually asked:

    To answer the original question, about image quality, all the tests that I've seen so far show minimal differences in IQ. These most likely have to do with the different processing algorithms Panasonic and Oly implement, especially in terms of jpegs. Take a bunch of shots with both cameras, show someone both images, and you'd be hard pressed to tell which one came from which camera. Especially if you shoot raw.

    As the above posts indicate, the bigger differences are in ergonomics (size, style, built-in vs. add-on flash, control layouts, menu approach, etc.) and features.
  8. mirrorless

    mirrorless Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 16, 2013
    I have the GH3, and I'm getting the M5. I bought the GH3 for it's video capabilities. However, I've been getting more interested in photography lately, especially, street photography, and now I want an M5. Mixed with my PL25, it's going to be a killer combo. Light, beautiful, and high quality.
    If video is most important, get the GH3. If you want something with style that takes excellent pictures, and good video too, go for the OMD. They're both water resistant and have IS abilities. You can't go wrong with either one, if you can't decide, get both. It's always good to have a second camera.:drinks:
  9. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Interesting thread.

    I've preferred Pany bodies since entering the format in 2009, but added some Olys (E-PL3 and E-M5) for times when I wanted IBIS.

    I don't see much discussion on the forum about the GH3, perhaps it isn't commonly used among our membership here?

    I've been using the E-M5 for almost all of my shooting during the last year, but I just ordered a GH3 yesterday, to replace my GH2 and G5. I'm looking forward to using the GH3 for video, especially. No plans to ditch the E-M5 just yet. Perhaps if the GX2 turns out as hoped for, my go-to pair of bodies will be GH3 and GX2. Time will tell.

    Good times for us m4/3 shooters, eh!
  10. Brian G

    Brian G Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 16, 2010
    Victoria, BC
    GH3 in, EM5 gone

    Finally just sold my EM5 with 12-50 lens last night. I hadn't used it since getting the GH3 in January. Well, I did run a couple of same-scene comparisons just to satisfy my curiosity, but not even much of that.

    Coming from Panasonic menus, and the relative ease of getting in and out of exposure bracketing, this was the real spoiler for me with the EM5. There were a few other little things that I would have liked to be different, but it was really the blinding lack of common sense demonstrated by Olympus on this one function that made it painful for me. Everything else was just a case of personal preference and changing some habits.

    The EM5 did have a couple of very nice innovations, the display of highlight & shadow blinkies before taking the shot was great, I thought.

    I always felt that the shutter had more "clunk" to it than it should have but that's minor.

    No disrespect to anyone who likes their Olympus.

    I recently spent a week with a very good friend who uses a Canon 5DMkIII, shot in the same areas, and even took the opportunity to shoot the same scene with both the Canon and the GH3 on the same tripod, similar enough lenses (12-35 & 24-70 Mk2), and compare the files. While you could never say that the m43 cam is in all ways the equivalent of the 5DMkIII, it compared very favorably. As she put it, we each had the camera that suited our personal preferences & priorities (she shoots landscape & nature, mostly).

    So, I very much like the GH3, and have very few criticisms (struggling to think of one of consequence, but there must be some!)

  11. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    My GH3 arrived yesterday. Initial impressions are very positive. Ease of use, controls for bracketing are awesome. Pany menus have always been very well done and are even better on the GH3. Will be putting it through its paces now. No doubt this is a keeper, especially for video, which I'm really moving forward with exploring.
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