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EPM1 vs. EPL1 vs. GF2 White Balance and Responsiveness

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by tympman, Jun 4, 2012.

  1. tympman

    tympman Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 13, 2012
    Hi! Newcomer to the forum. Thanks in advance for any insight.

    I have read a lot about the how great the white balance, as well as the responsiveness (speed) of the EPM1 are.

    My questions:

    1. Is the white balance of the EPM1 dramatically better than the EPL1? Is this obvious in daily use when taking a snap, or is it somewhat overexaggerated?

    2. Is the white balance of the EPM1 also alot better than the GF2?

    3. Does the EPM1 handle noticable faster than the EPL1?

    4. Are the Olympus OOC JPEGs dramatically better that the GF2? Is there an easy workaround?

    Thanks!
     
  2. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    I never had the EPL1, but I had the EP1, and I'm guessing the WB of the two are similar. The WB of the EPM1 is only dramatically better under incandescent lighting, when you set "keep warm colors" to off. I'm sure there's tweaks, but that's the only dramatic one.

    The EPM1 handled very noticeably faster than my EP1 or EPL2, so it's likely the same over the EPL1.

    I have found the OOC jpgs of Oly better than the Panny G3 I owned. Raw was a wash (actually, RAW in the G3 is better than RAW in the Oly's because the G3 has a newer/better sensor, but the GF2 still has the older sensor, so it would be a wash).

    That's about all I can say.
     
  3. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010

    The Default AWB on the Olympus (vs Panasonic cameras) camera produces a warmer image that many folks find very pleasing. Is it better? Well, better is a subjective term. You can adjust brightness, contrast, sharpness and noise reduction on the GF2 to tailor the way the camera responds. It's like a scaled down version of the film styles in the G2 and GH2. I find that I can tweak the color so that my Panasonic bodies give me OOC JPEG color that is very similar to my Olympus bodies. It's been a while since I had an E-PL1 but I didn't notice a great deal of difference between the E-PL1 and E-PM1 with regard to AWB. What the Olympus cameras do have is VERY good metering, and the E-PM1 is no exception. The Panasonic metering isn't bad but the Olympus seems to nail the metering more consistently.

    I never ran my E-PM1 and GF2 side by side but I'd guess the E-PM1 is a bit faster. Is it noticeable? I never found either to feel particularly slow. I do think the E-PM1 handles better than the E-PL1, then again I have never been a huge fan of the button layout on the E-PL1 so I am a bit biased there. FWIW I think the GF2 handles better than either the E-PM1 or the E-PL1 because I prefer the control layout (the clickable thumbwheel in particular) and UI. Then again that's just my take on it.

    The E-PM1 does have a fast 5.5 FPS and that's the fastest of all the PEN cameras as far as I know.
     
  4. tympman

    tympman Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 13, 2012
    EPM vs. EPL2

    Thanks for the feedback!

    Does the EPL2 focus noticeably faster than the EPL1 or EP1?
     
  5. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    The E-PL2 is pretty quick. If I were choosing between those three I'd likely lean toward the E-PL2 because it has a higher resolution LCD, fits nicely in the hand, has a control setup that is IMHO better than the E-PL1 (but maybe not the E-P1) and can use an external EVF. It's a nice camera. If you've decided on going with Olympus then I think it's a terrific option.

    Ned where are you? There is someone in need of E-PL2 wisdom here!!!
     
  6. tympman

    tympman Mu-43 Regular

    30
    Mar 13, 2012
    EPL2 and Panasonic?

    Could I ask what settings you use to improve the JPEGs out of Panasonics?
     
  7. jyc860923

    jyc860923 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 28, 2012
    Shenyang, China
    贾一川
    I've had the same question some time ago, honestly I don't think there's a certain setting that gives you Olympus colour throughout variable shooting conditions, and I consider Olympus OOC is too pleasing people to be correct, but I'd agree that the metering and DR are better.
     
  8. M4/3

    M4/3 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    713
    Sep 24, 2011
    The test review sites show the E-PL2 produces brighter, sharper and more accurately colorful OCC jpegs than the GF2:
    gf2.jpg
    Also show the E-PL1 beats the E-PL2 in those same characteristics
    pl1-2.jpg


    Thus if you have a strong desire for the brightest, sharpest and most pleasingly colorful OCC jpegs and don't mind its slower focusing and button based ergonomics, then you should get the E-PL1. If you shoot RAW and place a priority on ergonomics then the GF2 could suit you well. If your requirements are somewhere inbetween these extremes, consider the E-PL2 or E-PM1.
     
  9. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    That's the second time I've seen you post that example. Those are images based on the DEFAULT settings for each camera. If you take the time to tweak the settings to you liking color the GF2 produces wouldn't look anything like that. I have spent the past two years shooting with a variety of m43 bodies INCLUDING the E-PL1 and quite honestly the practical differences between any of these cameras is very VERY small.

    I suggest folk take test images with a grain of salt and look at images shot by photographers (or enthusiasts) to see what a camera is capable of. There are tons of images right here on this forum that folks can look at and get a much better of what these cameras can do. Olympus makes some fine cameras but they may not be to everyones liking. I shot thousands of images with my E-PL1 and while I thought it had very nice quality I don't see that the images are that much better than what I shot with my G2, E-P1, E-PM1 or GF2. They are all capable of terrific quality and all have some weaknesses. The E-PL1 happens to have a very weak AA filter. The images appear to be a tiny bit more contrastsy and slightly sharper, but it's not anything you can't replicate in about 2 seconds in Lightroom, Photoshop or whatever imaging software you might have on hand. I'll give the E-PL1 credit though, it is a superb camera for the price. It's not my particualar taste and I don't miss the one I sold but it has much to recommend it.

    FWIW I place a premium on ergonomics and I don't consider that a particularly EXTREME position. It just a simple preference.
     
  10. M4/3

    M4/3 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    713
    Sep 24, 2011
    I agree and my own testing with my E-M5 vs my E-PL1 has mirrored with the camera review test images have shown; i.e. that the E-PL1 delivers crisper OCC jpeg detail. Obviously that characteristic will not be important for many, but since it is a unique characteristic of the E-PL1, I think camera shoppers should be made aware of it, just as they should be made aware of the unique characteristics of the E-PL2, E-PM1 and GF2.
    e-m5vse-pl1.jpg
     
  11. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Boston
    Sadly, the EPL1 also is slow, has a max shutter of 1/2000, a bottom ISO of 200 and some other limitations. Wonder why they changed the jpg engine after the EPL1?
     
  12. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010

    A weaker AA filter like then E-PL1 uses captures finer detail but under certain circumstances introduces moire and artifacting (which can be pretty distracting when it does pop up) If I had to guess I'd bet they decided not to continue the weaker AA filter as a compromise to get a better balance of sharpness while still limiting moire. Whether or not that was a wise decision is debatable.
     
  13. The E-PL1 was the last Pen to offer an ISO 100 setting. I tend to think that both it and to a lesser extent the E-PL2 were prototypes for the current generation of Pens, but were both very successful cameras in their own right.