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em5 Mk ii vs Pen-F 150mm cropped comparo

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by pcovers, Feb 22, 2016.

  1. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    I first want to make clear that I love my em5, it takes beautiful pictures, I am completely satisfied with it, I have no intention of letting lose of it. This is not a Pen-F is better thread. I am posting only because, on my picture taking outing yesterday, I took a few pics with my 14-150mm ii Oly lens. It is a fine lens for many purposes. It can produce very nice images. I have always been less than satisfied with it at its maximum of 150mm. I used that same lens on my Pen-F outing and my unscientific reaction to the pics, particularly at 150mm, was that the images just looked sharper and more defined than what it usually produces (see my recent post in another thread of small plane and kite).

    I am posting here a screen shot of two side by side examples of the same lens at 150mm with the same settings used on both my em5 Mk ii and my Pen-F - pics taken withins seconds of each other with a quick change act on the lens from body to body.

    In both, the left image is from my em5 and the right is from the Pen-F. There is a discernible difference at such close cropping at 150mm. This may be enough difference if you are taking distance shots of smallish birds. Feathers from one may look sharper than feathers in another.

    As I say, I am not making any claim of superiority of the Pen-F over the em5, but I will say all other images I tried this in (same lens on both bodies) did show the same slightly more defined and sharp difference. I would guess it is the sensor.

    I would not hesitate to use either bodies for any photo outing I was on.
     

    Attached Files:

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  2. Egregius V

    Egregius V Mu-43 Regular

    122
    Jun 14, 2015
    Massachusetts, USA
    Rev. Gregory Vozzo
    Interesting comparison! Thanks for sharing these images.

    I think I can see in both pictures that the 20MP sensor attains slightly better resolution vs. the 16MP sensor. I can't be sure what you're comparing, though, as the image pairs are equal in size. Are you blowing up the E-M5 II image to a scale >100% to make your comparisons? This would make the pixels in the E-M5 II images look larger and possibly anti-aliased. That's what I think I am seeing. Perhaps I'm wrong, though - are you instead shrinking the 20MP PEN-F images to match the size of the 16MP images?

    In the second pair of images, I think there's also a slight difference in focus. Maybe the autofocus had a bit of trouble locking on the target consistently? (It looks like a challenging target.) I think the EM5-II image has sharper-looking foliage in the lower left corner and better contrast among the leaves, while the PEN-F image shows the same advantages in the center.

    Some other ideas... What shooting mode did you use? Same for both cameras? Same ISO/exposure? I also wonder about the differences in coloring. Are these out-of-camera JPEGs that you are comparing? Could it be that the JPEG color/contrast/sharpness settings and "keep warm colors" setting are different between the two cameras? Also, is the firmware up-to-date on the E-M5 II?
     
  3. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    All settings in the camera were set the same (e.g., ISO, aperture, white balance, etc.) Post processing was using the same Olympus software with a very minor application of +2 brightness and +4 contrast, which is a common setting I use on this lens for most pics. I had half a dozen other images at far reaches that confirmed what is more easily seen in the image of the gas meter.

    I think you hit on what I was testing for myself: does the Pen-F provide results that one might expect from a larger sensor at the same field of view (slightly different cropping). Not a scientific comparison based on pixel density differences. Just a seat of the pants look at whether or not the Pen-F sensor appears to perform "better" when images from both cameras are cropped to the same field of view. IT shold be, but it is reassuring to see that, in all my samples, the Pen-F did appear sharper at the far fringes that one might stretch a crop to.

    I hope that makes sense.
     
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  4. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 13, 2012
    Chicago-area
    David Dornblaser
    Both JPEGs I assume?
     
  5. tradesmith45

    tradesmith45 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Dec 13, 2012
    Oregon
    Can you do a comparison starting w/ RAWs?
     
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  6. m43happy

    m43happy Mu-43 Veteran

    430
    Feb 18, 2012
    Are you upscaling the e-m5ii to match the 20mp Pen?
     
  7. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    Yes. Some might think it obvious that, buy doing so, the larger sensor would be better. There are some that have suggested 16 to 20 is just marketing. In part, I was doing my own comparo to see if the difference, scaled to the same field of view, did make a difference. To my eyes, on all the pics I did this little test on, each showed a slight edge to the larger sensor at the extreme of the 14-150mm lens used. Perhaps it was nothing more than a validation that larger sensors to have some advantages at the extremes.
     
  8. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    Yes.
     
  9. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    If I can steal 30 minutes away from my day today, I'll see if I can post two raw files from the two cameras of the same subject using the same lens.
     
  10. mkallstrom

    mkallstrom Mu-43 Regular

    138
    May 3, 2012
    Stockholm, Sweden
    Magnus
    I agree that this seems to be the biggest problem with the second image.
     
  11. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    I'll try to find a better subject with less likelihood of background interfering. I think the gas meter images show it best. There is very much a difference there that showed up similarly in the other pics I took but did not post.

    I am going to do a raw comparison, and will try to find the best subject for the purpose.
     
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  12. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    For what its worth, here is a side by side, raw, with no post processing. I think it shows what should be reasonably expected: a larger sensor will delay pixelation when cropping images. It may not be significant, but it seems obvious. I think what it also shows is how remarkable the Oly 75mm 1.8 is at wide open on both cameras. An additional pic is provided to show the scale of the cropping.

    It's easier to see the differences when, after clicking on the thumbnail, you use the upper right hand tool to open it in a new window.
     

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  13. heli-mech

    heli-mech Mu-43 Top Veteran

    959
    Mar 9, 2012
    Vancouver Island, Canada
    Andrew
    The crop on the right to me looks like it has heavy jpeg compression or something??
     
  14. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    If you are looking at the side by side of the water timer pics just above your post, the images are raw (not jpeg) with no processing applied. Straight out of both cameras using the same lens, settings, even same SD card. Only cropping to match as close as I could was applied. The crop is quite zoomed in. About the only thing one can take from this is whether or not they see a sharper or clearer or "better" image in one vs the other, cropped to the same field of view. I think the outcome just serves to reinforce what would be expected about a slightly bigger sensor, not a better one, just a bigger one.
     
  15. Brian Beezley

    Brian Beezley Mu-43 All-Pro

    I think you should display two 100% crops, not two images of the same size. That will eliminate resizing artifacts.

    Brian
     
  16. heli-mech

    heli-mech Mu-43 Top Veteran

    959
    Mar 9, 2012
    Vancouver Island, Canada
    Andrew
    Well they are not RAW in their current form, you obviously processed them into Jpeg or TIFF to create the crops. Something had to have happened to the crop on the right as there are noticeable artifacts whether JPEG compression or poor resizing. Is the right crop the PEN or EM5?
     
  17. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    OK, I'll do that. I think what it will show is that when both are cropped to 100% they will both have an equal level of quality to their respective sized images. But what I was trying to determine for myself was if I blew the image up onto a printed photograph or a screen to the exact same size, would the larger sensor image behave as one would hope: sharper than the 16mp when pushed to the fringe. That was my intention.

    If for example the objective was creating a windows desktop image that showed an eagle in flight where the wingspan stretched from the left edge to the right edge of your screen, then you might want to know if the image produced by the Pen F might be sharper than the image produced by the em5 when scaled to the size of your screen. I hope that makes sense. It may sound unconventional but the focus was whether or not an image of the same size when projected onto a screen or a page looks better from the 20 megapixel sensor that it does from the 16 megapixel sensor. Physics would presume that it would look sharper, but you never can tell until you try it.

    I'll post the two images scaled at 100% each.
     
  18. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    Are used the side by side tool in Lightroom and cropped them to the same physical size each so that I can look at one against the other and see the same sized image physically. I didn't do any processing of either RAW file I only inserted them into the Lightroom comparison window so that they were right next to each other in their native form. I then took a screenshot of a single window showing the two side by side. The screenshot reflects what each one look like when zoomed to the same physical size in a side-by-side comparison in Lightroom. Whatever impact taking a screenshot had would have the same positive or negative to each of the images because they were both projected together.
     
  19. pcovers

    pcovers Mu-43 Regular

    88
    Aug 13, 2015
    Although it may look like JPEG compression I think its just the artifacts that you would get when you push an image on a 16 megapixel sensor to its limits just prior to pixelation. I think the Pen F image would look very similar to the other if I pushed the cropping or zoom factor just a little bit more.
     
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  20. heli-mech

    heli-mech Mu-43 Top Veteran

    959
    Mar 9, 2012
    Vancouver Island, Canada
    Andrew
    Not sure how accurate lightroom's "display" zoom is vs processed resizing so you are throwing a whole other variable into the mix. On a side note I didn't think lightroom handled PEN-F RAW's yet?