EM-5

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by py6km, May 14, 2012.

  1. py6km

    py6km Mu-43 Rookie

    14
    May 12, 2012
    What an absolutely cracking little camera this is. I've had quite a few compact cameras in my time from the G10 to G12, Panny GF1 and GH2, Leica X1 and Fuji X100, and the EM-5 is the best yet in my opinion.

    My main concern with most of the above has always been the focus acquisition time - although they are all very accurate at nailing focus, most of the time, the time taken to actually acquire focus in the first place has always been a bone of contention for me. In this regard, the X1 and X100 were the worst.

    I'm pleased to say that the EM-5 with the 12-50 lens is very very fast - in fact, I wasn't quite expecting it to be as fast as it is. Obviously the process it uses to focus is different to DSLRs, but it really is very quick, and this fussy user has not been left wanting. I would hope that in time it will only all get better with FM releases.

    For the first time ever, I think I may not be shooting RAW as the jpeg engine is so good, and the dynamic range and high ISO are excellent.

    I think this camera coupled with the Panny 20mm (or Panny Leica 25mm) is a very decent reason to avoid the X100 for any prospective buyers of that reading this - it seems to me that the benefit of APS-C over the micro four thirds sensor size are largely rendered moot by this camera based on my use of the two.

    One other thing I've noted is that the face detection system is quite astonishing. It's accurate - most are these days - but it gives you the option to automatically focus on the left or right eye of the subject, or the eye which is closest. I didn't think it would be very good, but it is absolutely brilliant. Having enabled it to try it out, I don't think I'll ever switch it off. Viewing images on the camera with all the info displayed, the exact point of focus is displayed - on every image of a person there was a little green square over the closest eye (and that green square was, I'm pleased to say, much smaller than the default af frame size).

    Unfortunately, it looks as though I just missed the free grip offer, but can hopefully pick one up at a keen price from someone who got that and doesn't want it, as I think that will improve the handling for me (with the front grip part on, not the battery compartment).

    I'll hope to report back more as I get to use the camera more over the coming weeks and months, but suffice to say I'm the most pleased with a camera I've been in a long time.
     
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  2. msaari

    msaari Mu-43 Rookie

    24
    Apr 30, 2012
    Tampere, Finland
    I just got mine last Friday and I'm rather fond of it already. Looks like the days are numbered for my Canon EOS 550D. This one's just so much better for my needs.

    What I like most about E-M5:

    - small size of body and lenses
    - IBIS, seems to work wonders
    - the viewfinder, it's much better than an optical viewfinder
     
  3. py6km

    py6km Mu-43 Rookie

    14
    May 12, 2012
    Hmm, not sure I agree with your last point, although I do agree that the VF in the camera is very good.
     
  4. msaari

    msaari Mu-43 Rookie

    24
    Apr 30, 2012
    Tampere, Finland
    I like the versatility of the VF: all the menus and information, setting exposure with the highlighted low and high points, stabilization of VF image, magnification (combined with stabilitization, this is a very nice when focusing old manual lenses).

    Sure, an optical viewfinder has a clearer view, but I think these upsides make an electronic viewfinder a winner for me.
     
  5. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs Super Moderator

    Apr 17, 2010
    Near Philadephila
    I quite like the EM5 also, but wouldn't really look at it as a reason not to have an X100, or some of the other cameras on your list. The X100 is a wholly different shooting experience. Between the OVF and the control layout, its just different. And no, the AF is not a speed demon, but I've never found it a problem. And the 20mm lens will render the EM5 or any other m43 camera basically about as slow as the X100 - its just a slow focussing lens. The 25 or 12 or 45, OTOH, are much faster.

    And although I personally greatly prefer the EM5 to the GH2, I have to say that AF on the GH2 was basically as fast as on the EM5 and a bit faster in low light. And its high ISO and DR performance is not much below the EM5, although is somewhat.

    I like the EM5 as much as anyone - I just don't think it renders all other cameras irrelevant or un-useable! I have an X-Pro 1 also, BTW, and although every rational bone in my body says the EM5 is a more capable camera in all sorts of ways, the combination of the X-Pro 1 really enjoyable shooting experience, the OVF, and the files it produces make it my favorite camera these days. I'd just really rather pick it up most of the time if I don't need some specific capability of the EM5 that the X-Pro 1 doesn't also share. I'm really glad to have a great m43 camera too, but its not the be-all, end-all camera. Just one more really really fine piece of modern technology...

    -Ray
     
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  6. py6km

    py6km Mu-43 Rookie

    14
    May 12, 2012
    Yep, agree with everything you said (although I always found the 20mm very fast to be honest). I think though, for me and my use, on balance, the EM-5 is the best of the bunch I mentioned. IQ-wise, I'd say that the Leica was probably on the top of my list. It's quite possible that the Olympus would be on the bottom of my list for menu comprehensibility/layout, although the X100 wasn't brilliant either to be honest - each just takes some getting used to. In terms of the X100, it's a rather strange thing. I wanted to like, but just couldn't accept the foibles, and the novelty of the way it looked and the OVF wore off quick quickly for me. Of course, everyone's mileage varies, and for some it's perfect - for me though, it just didn't quite cut it, particularly in view of the price tag. I do get the impression that some folk are persevering with it for the wrong reasons though.

    The G series cameras are really good, but ultimately the small sensor just started to annoy me, although the G12 had a commendable 12mp rather than the silly number in some of the previous versions which made it really quite decent.

    I certainly don't think it makes anything else irrelevant or unusable - it just makes me realise that those other cameras did have the flaws that I thought they did, and which ultimately made me get rid of them.

    For the time being, this camera is not likely to replace my dSLR, although that position may change depending on how well I find the grip, Olympus 50-150 and Summilux 25mm. At present, it's certainly enabling me to get shots that I otherwise wouldn't have been able to due to not having a bulky thing with me.