EM5 Mk ii or Panasonic G80 ?

Discussion in 'This or That?' started by justa1972, Sep 22, 2016.

  1. justa1972

    justa1972 Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    Hello all

    I have spent an awful lot of time deciding which System to buy into...

    I have recently sold my Fuji system, not because I didn't like it but because it's just too expensive. I liked the images and the ergonomics of the cameras but I just cannot afford or justify the prices of the optics or the upgrade to the XT-2.

    So I have looked at smaller DSLR's but have decided that I'd like to stay mirrorless and go M43. I thought the decision might be easier then but it isn't as there are so many bodies available !

    I have narrowed it down to the O-MD EM 5 mk ii or the new Panasonic G80. I mainly take Landscape and travel images - An excellent viewfinder is very important and image quality also as I don't want to lose too much from the Fuji.

    I would like a walk around lens (the Pana 12-60) looks ideal and then a wide angle zoom ( 9-18 ?) and then perhaps a 35-100 or something similar and small. Finally i may add one of the excellent small primes like the 14 or 20mm.

    I'd pretty much decided on the G80 (there are some pre-order offers about) but then read that the Oly jpegs are better than Panasonic - this is also important as I shoot jpeg !

    This bought me to the EM5 mk ii but I've read a few concerns about Shutter shock which sounds worrying and annoying !

    So any advice ? I have even thought about the Pen F but its pricey and I'm concerned that due to its small size its only really suitable for prime lenses.

    My budget is about £1200 max

    many thanks !
  2. barry13

    barry13 Super Moderator

    Mar 7, 2014
    Southern California
    Real Name:
    1. All current OM-D models have a great workaround for shutter shock, called 0-sec Anti-Shock or EFC. It works fine and I have seen no complaints from those who use it.

    FYI, All systems with mechanical shutters are susceptible to shock.

    2. The Pen F is not as small as you may think, and many users use the 12-40mm on it.

    3. For landscapes, the E-M5 II has high-res mode, if you're going to use a tripod.
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  3. TheMenWhoDrawSheeps

    TheMenWhoDrawSheeps Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 15, 2016
    Om5ii definetely.

    a) High res. mode with right lens(that means pro or very good prime) gives you comparable amount of detail as D810(no joke) - as barry stated you need tripod, which isn´t that big of a problem.

    b) Weather sealing with pro lenses - i never had particular interest in it, but i sure praised it as i got caught up by a storm, and got drenched wet with all my equipment. heck, i even took pictures instead of looking for a dry spot%)

    c) 5 achs IBIS - hanhelding a wide angle shot up to 1/5s, 1/2s, and even some at 1s - for a stills photographer it really makes it up for the sensor size, since you can just stay at iso100/200 for some night shots with primes. and if you´re into manual focus lenses - they all get stabilized, you just have to attach it somehow to the body.

    d) penF is actually bigger, or at least looks and feels bigger due to blocky ergonomics. despite 20MP sensor, and some additional custom setings on the dial, so as jpeg dial, i find the camera less professionaly built(Plasticky battery holder, no weather sealing, not so good ergonomics - made more for look).
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2016
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  4. nick101

    nick101 New to Mu-43

    Jul 8, 2012
    I have the Pen-F and the E-M5 ii, and the E-M5 is much the better bet if it's landscape and travel you're looking at. The main reason is that the viewfinder position and size work much better for landscape. Technically, they have the same VF, but the image in the E-M5 is much bigger.

    Although the Pen-F has the newer, 20MP sensor, the practical differences are minimal. Where the pen works well is for casual or street style photography.

    Also, the Pen-F isn't any more compact in reality and, as you've seen, it costs quite bit more - about £150-£200, depending where you look. So you're paying extra for no significant benefit.

    Can't comment on the G80 - I'm only suggesting that the Pen-F is a bit of a distraction. Hope that helps
  5. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    Real Name:
    I'll through my voice in for the E-M5 mkII if you shoot landscapes on a tripod and your subject matter won't be impacted by the multi shot process of creating the high res image. That will get you an image you can compare with any of the high MP cameras out there. And if your subject matter won't handle that or you prefer not to use a tripod you still have one of the best IBIS systems available. The Pen F might be an option for you as well and if you used a lot of the Fuji film modes or filters it's something to think about. But the E-M5 mkII is a heck of a bargain right now, I came close to picking another one up the with the last 20% sale on reconditioned stuff Olympus had.

    As to shutter shock, Panasonic has been effected but this more than Olympus in recent years since Olympus implemented 0-sec Anti-Shock or EFC as Barry mentioned. The Panasonic GX80 and G80 do have a new shutter design that seems to have corrected this, at least I haven't noticed it on my GX80/85.

    Strictly from a handling stand point if you like the Fuji I think you would be happier with the Olympus. While many complain about Olympus's menus I find each have their own issues. And the SCP plus the option disable some of the display screens might feel more comfortable for you. The SCP is very much like the Fuji Quick menu with the ability to touch the item you want to change then rotate a dial to change it. Where as with the Fuji you have to navigate to the item then use a dial if I recall correctly.
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  6. lahsrah

    lahsrah Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 6, 2015
    Since you are a landscape photographer you will be happy with either one. If you had a need for faster C-AF and tracking then the G80 would be a better buy. The Panasonic DFD system with their lenses beats Olympus cameras thus far although the E-M1 II seems to have better PDAF but yet to be tested.

    Both G80 and EM5 II have 5-axis stabilization but EM's is better. The Panasonic has 4K stills mode which is awesome for action shots.
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  7. kingduct

    kingduct Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 12, 2013
    Nobody's stating reasons why you might want the Panasonic, so I'll do a comparison and point some of them out. (Note that the G80 isn't in stores yet, but should be within the next month. I'm basing my points on what I've read.)

    1. Everything I've read suggests that the newer Panasonics do much better than older Panasonics did with jpeg quality. In fact, I asked about this recently and several people here were particularly positive about GX85 jpegs. I don't think anybody is claiming that the Panasonic jpegs are better than the Olympus jpegs, but it feels like people generally think they are competitive (unlike in the past, when they were clearly worse).
    2. The G series cameras have a much bigger grip and a built-in flash, things the E-M5 ii lacks. While the G80 isn't in stores yet, the G7 should be pretty similar in terms of the grip -- you should hold and see whether you like the slightly bulkier feel or not.
    3. At this point, the only image quality advantage the Olympus really has is in the Hi-Res photo mode, which requires still subjects and a tripod. If that constitutes much of what you shoot, yeah, the Olympus will be better. Otherwise though, the images produced should be very similar in quality.
    4. If you ever decide to record video, the Panasonic will allow higher quality recording (to be fair, I never record video).
    5. The Panasonic has "4k photo mode" which appears to offer some decent utility. I'm not going to go into detail about it, but the modes sound useful if you are trying to get photos of things that move quickly (birds in flight, kids playing sports, etc).
    6. The Panasonic with the 12-60 is a fully weather resistant kit with a solid zoom range. I don't remember whether the E-M5 ii is offered with their 12-50mm weather resistant kit lens or not. Still, it feels like the G80, at the announced price with the kit lens, is quite versatile.
    7. At this point, the E-M5 ii's image stabilization is likely only marginally better than the G80, especially if you get any Panasonic lenses that have their own image stabilization (like the 12-60 zoom). That's because the Panasonic can combine the image stabilization of the camera with the image stabilization of the lens to be even more stabilized.

    In short: If you plan to use the Hi-Res mode on a tripod for still subjects, go for the Olympus. If you want a bigger grip and a built-in flash (albeit weak), or you want better video and the 4k photo modes, go for the Panasonic. If you just want good still photos without a tripod, they should be pretty comparable.
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  8. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    Real Name:
    While I agree a built in flash is handy, the included flash with the E-M5 mkII is better with it's articulated head,
  9. InlawBiker

    InlawBiker Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 1, 2012
    Seattle, WA
    Real Name:
    I have used a $99 Metz 36 AF-5 flash on my old G3 with good success, as long as you're using an external flash at least it's powerful and tilts.
  10. Nathanael

    Nathanael Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 12, 2015
    I dont' have much opinion on G80 vs EM5ii, but just wanted to point out that several people have replied with similar points to this ^^
    And I feel like it could be noted that they're not really addressing the question or don't know what the G80 is.

    Because the G80 has weather sealing and IBIS. Plus Panasonic has dual IS (lens/IBIS) with a larger stable of IS lenses (currently only works with a couple lenses, but they say compatibility will be increased).

    If I were you, I'd choose base on physical preferences (big/small grip, retro vs modern style) as first criteria and "high-res mode" vs. "better video" as a second criteria. The rest is mostly a wash.
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  11. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    The G80 also has all those things except high-res mode.
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  12. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    Personally, I prefer Panasonic's user interface and ergonomics to Olympus. But functionally, the E-M5 II and G80 are nearly identical cameras in terms of strengths. The only difference really is that the G80 has 4K video (and associated 4K Photo features that are good if you ever decide to shoot action) whereas the E-M5 II has the excellent quality available from High Res mode if you are going to work exclusively from a tripod in still conditions a lot of the time.

    For me, the recommendation for the G80 comes down to value. Just as good a camera as the E-M5 II in pretty much every way you can mention, and it costs $1000 including a weather-sealed 12-60mm lens that sells for $500 by itself. The E-M5 II, on the other hand, costs $1100 just for the body, so you'd need to add a lens on top of that. The cheapest weather-sealed lens you'll find is the thoroughly average 12-50mm which will add another ~$150-200 to your price if you buy it as a grey market kit take-off or used.

    So with a 30% cheaper price tag for the kit, the G80 strikes me as unbeatable value, even as a brand new entry onto the market.
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  13. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    Oh! And one thing that people aren't making much mention of at all is the new Economy Mode that is featured on the G80/G85. It seems to be basically just a more aggressive sleep algorithm for the camera whenever you don't have the EVF up to your eye, but Panasonic claims it can extend the battery life up to 800-900 shots! It forces you to use the camera like a DSLR (i.e. only the viewfinder), but it gives you DSLR battery life. Some people won't care about this at all, because spare batteries are cheap and light and easy. But for some people it really bothers them, so this sounds like a great feature to me.

    And if you want to use the accessory battery grip, you can supposedly get 1600-1800 shots as a result...
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  14. dalto

    dalto Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 6, 2016
    I find the ergonomics of the E-M5ii and the Fuji X-Tx to be somewhat similar. The Panasonics tend to have a more traditional(less traditional?) DSLR feel to them.

    I prefer the Olympus quite a bit but it is definitely a personal preference thing. I would want to put my hands on the Olympus and a similar Panasonic before making a decision if you can.
  15. justa1972

    justa1972 Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    Thanks for all the replies :)

    I am patiently waiting for the G80 to become available but have had a good look at the em5 mk ii - I really like the EVF but I'm not so sure about the handling - the grip seems a little small but I may get used to it - I wasn't that keen on the Fuji XT's at first.

    I don't really use a Tripod so not sure that the high res mode would be beneficial - unless something like a gorilla pod would work ?

    Similarly I m not sure how useful the G80's 4K photos etc would be (although they look interesting)

    One plus side for the EM5 is that I could pick up a second hand one - bodies go for about £500. This would mean that I wouldn't lose as much money as I would with the G80 - I can see that coming down a few hundred pounds after 6 months or so as Panasonics tend too.

    This would enable me to pick up a used Oly 12-40 pro although that would mean increasing the budget over the G80 possibly at the expense of another lens.

    Decisions, decisions !
  16. Nathanael

    Nathanael Mu-43 Veteran

    Oct 12, 2015

    I'm not so sure about the handling - the grip seems a little small but I may get used to it - I wasn't that keen on the Fuji XT's at first.

    -- these grips help a lot with handling and are pretty cheap, I use one about 80% of the time. but you still have the option to go without when it's not needed https://www.amazon.com/Fotodiox-Camera-Olympus-Mirrorless-Battery/dp/B01164LUCU (I have one for my EM10 but it's basically the same)

    I don't really use a Tripod so not sure that the high res mode would be beneficial - unless something like a gorilla pod would work ?
    -- yes

    Buying used is the way to go in my opinion. But I'm pretty tempted by the video features on the G80..
  17. mesmerized

    mesmerized Mu-43 Veteran

    Jun 18, 2012
    Hello there,

    I'm considering making a shift from m43 to Fuji-X. Which lenses would you say are not worth the price?

  18. Hazza

    Hazza Just Clicking

    Aug 10, 2013
    Huddersfield UK
    Real Name:
    I was debating this when I saw the Panasonic specs. but I have just pulled the trigger on a used EM5 mk2 which has a faulty LCD monitor and was priced to reflect this (£199) . The camera is otherwise in mint condition with all accessories and boxed. I don't mind the lack of LCD monitor as you can do everything in the EVF, it may be a bit more inconvenient when changing menu items but I can live with that for the savings that I have made.
  19. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Real Name:
    David Dornblaser
    I have the E-M5 II and absolutely love it. Soon I will have G85 in hand as I have pre-ordered it with the 12-60, which I pre-ordered for it's video capabilities. I am interested in comparing them side-by-side and I will share my thoughts if you like.
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  20. justa1972

    justa1972 Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 29, 2013
    All the fuji lenses are good but they are expensive - unless you are happy with the XC kit lenses, 18-55 and small primes like the 27 & 18.

    If you want an UWA the 10-24 is £700 and even the 14mm prime is £600!