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G2 Body for $350 and Lens Specials from Panasonic

Discussion in 'Hot Deals - Find a Great Deal? Share It Here.' started by Narnian, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. Narnian

    Narnian Nobody in particular ...

    Aug 6, 2010
    Richmond, VA
    Richard Elliott
    • Like Like x 1
  2. linkedit

    linkedit Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 6, 2010
    New Jersey, USA
    How would you compare the G2 with the E-PL1? I am toying with the idea I getting a G2 to replace my E-PL1.
  3. mclarenf3

    mclarenf3 Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 23, 2010
    I have had the E-PL1 for almost a year now. About a month ago, I purchased the Panasonic G2 (after toying with the idea of getting a GH2).

    Here are my thoughts after using both for the past month:

    Panasonic G2: In every way, except for the photos that result, this is the better camera. The EVF is a dream to use (and I use the VF-2 on the E-PL1), and the swivel screen comes in handy more often than not. I love how the EVF has a sensor so it automatically switches to the EVF when you bring your eye to it and automatically goes back to the LCD when you remove your eye from there. The LCD has a few different modes, but I leave it on the options mode (which is very similar to our Super Control Menu on the Olympus cameras). This allows you to use the G2 much like you would use any DSLR. You view through the EVF when composing, and the LCD screen has all of your options. The touch screen works really well. It allows you to just press on the option you want to change and I like it a lot more than fooling around with buttons.

    I find the camera easier to grip, and the location of the buttons and dials makes sense. I like how in a lot of cases, they have choosen to use sliders or dials instead of buttons. It allows you to skip the menus altogether and just flip the switch that you need (for AF-type, shooting-modes, etc). The menu is very detailed, but not overwhelming at all.

    AF is faster than the E-PL1 and there is no contest between the two. AF on the G2 with the 7-14mm or 14-140mm especially, is so quick that you don't notice any hunting at all. You press the shutter, and you get the focus confirm right away. I dare say it's as quick as a DSLR (and I used to use the E-3 w/12-60mm SWD and 50-200mm SWD).

    Olympus E-PL1: The main benefits the Olympus E-PL1 has over the Panasonic G2 are In-Body Image Stabilization and it's beautiful out of camera JPEGS. Here is where the actual pictures come out amazingly well without any need to tinker with it in a RAW editor. The IBIS is great because you get IS on ANY lens you use, whether it is a 4/3 lens, u4/3 lens, legacy glass, whatever! Don't underestimate the power of this. Also, a small benefit is that the E-PL1 is a smaller body than the G2, but as soon as you put on the VF-2, it becomes more cumbersome to use than the G2.

    A small benefit that the E-PL1 has, but only because of it's inferior LCD screen, is that when manually focusing you'll notice a glitter (actually aliasing) at the focus plane. This greatly helps when using manual focus with legacy glass in that you don't even have to zoom in when focusing, you just watch when your subject gets a little glitter over it and you'll be in focus. This doesn't happen on the Panasonic G2, because of the higher resolution LCD (as I'm told).


    If Olympus would build a u4/3 body with a built in EVF, and a swivel screen I don't think I'd have any reason to even consider the Panasonic range of bodies. If Panasonic would put IBIS into their bodies, I don't think I would need another Olympus body.

    Unfortunately they both have their trade-offs, it just depends which is more important to you. Since getting the G2, I haven't used the E-PL1 at all. I've slapped the 20/1.7 on it and thrown it in my kit bag. But whenever I reach for a camera it's been the G2 with the 7-14mm or 14-140mm. I'll likely only use the E-PL1 for those situations where I know I'll need IBIS, or a P&S looking camera (for certain venues which don't allow DSLR cameras).

    On a related note: I bought my Panasonic G2 (body only) used for $350. That is a screaming deal you are getting here. Kind of makes me think that there is a G3 JUST around the corner...
  4. pjohngren

    pjohngren Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Oct 15, 2010
    While it is true that the out of camera JPEGs seem anemic with the G1 and no doubt the G2, that is because Panasonic is overly conservative with their default settings. All you have to do is use the Dynamic film mode and season it to taste - I cut a little back on the contrast and bump up the saturation a notch. Also pick a WB like cloudy and adjust that a little to you liking. Then leave the camera on these settings at least for all natural light shots and you will get totally great JPEGS. My guess is that Olympus simply has more agressive default settings. I no longer use RAW with the G1/GF1 - no need to.
    • Like Like x 2
  5. linkedit

    linkedit Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 6, 2010
    New Jersey, USA
    Hmm.... makes me want to get the G2 and keep the E-PL1. I had always heard that the .jpg's from the E-PL1 were better, but honestly I only shoot RAW.

    My main dilemma now is if it's worth keeping the Oly for the IBIS and the smaller RF like form factor because the poor focus speed is really frustrating.

    If only a Fuji X100 type camera with interchangeable lenses would come out. IMO it would be the perfect camera.
  6. mclarenf3

    mclarenf3 Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 23, 2010
    That is very true. If I edit the RAW files I found that I could get the same feel that the Olympus JPEGs gave me.

    What setting specifically have you set on your G1/G2? For White Balance I have adjusted all of the presets to fit more in tune with the Olympus WB presets, and I am happy with that. It's just the vibrancy, and a few other things. I would love to know what you did with yours and give it a go on my G2.
  7. Mellow

    Mellow Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 27, 2010
    Florida or Idaho
    Just a quick thought from someone who owns both a G1 (about same size as G2) and E-PL1.

    To me, they're different cameras. I don't always use the VF-2; in fact, I prefer to leave it at home whenever I can, and tend to use it only with Legacy lenses or in very bright sunlight. Without the VF-2 attached the difference in size between the cameras is huge. I can mount the 20mm Panasonic on the E-PL1 and easily slide it into a pants pocket (baggy pants!) but couldn't even dream of it with the G1.

    That said, I concur with the OP about the advantages of the G1: the swivel screen is really fun to use; the built-in EVF is pretty good (not as good as the VF-2, not even close). Don't forget also click and rotate dial on the front that is WAAAAAY easier to use than Olympus' menu-driven system for changing things like exposure compensation and aperture, and you can easily do it while keeping your eye on the target.

    One last thing: I disagree about the ease of reproducing the Olympus JPEG colors with the G1, or any Panny camera for that matter. I think it's a lot more difficult than you think; in fact, I would consider it darn near impossible. That deficiency doesn't matter about 80% of the time because I post-process anyway using LR from RAW, but 20% of my pictures from the E-PL1 are OOC jpegs because the color is so perfect. That never happens with my G1.
  8. VasManI

    VasManI Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 21, 2011
    One small, but at times critical benefit that Panasonic has over Olympus is that firmware upgrades are installed from a memory card, not an online process, and it's platform (OS) independent. This is underestimated by most, until they have an issue with the Olympus upgrade process.
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