Is the Electronic Viewfinder worth it?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by alevan, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. alevan

    alevan New to Mu-43

    Jun 24, 2010
    New to m4/3 with the EPL-1. Is the viewfinder worth it? What I am finding in the short week that I have owned the EPL-1 is that I cannot hold the camera as steady as my 4/3 cameras (E3 as an example). Yes I have big hands but I am finding that holding the camera out a little to view the scene through the rear screen and pressing the shutter button leads to a slight shake. And yes IS is on and I am using decent shutter speeds. I am thinking that having the EVF would allow me to hold the camera in a more natural (DSLR) position and perhaps allow me to be steadier. With the E3 I can shoot 1/2 sec and get clean pics.
  2. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Real Name:
    Ray, not Oz
    It depends on a number of factors. I wouldn't be without one because it allows me to focus so much easier with manual lenses and also allows me to handle the camera from lower angles because of the tilting capability. In very bright backlight it's also valuable and if you need glasses for reading like I do, the fact that I can adjust the dioptre of the EVF is excellent. It also assists in holding the camera a little better, as you then tend to hold it like a DSLR/rangefinder camera.


  3. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Welcome aboard.....
    The EVF is wonderful on the Pen. It is very bright and nice contrast. Yes, it feels like a DSLR but much lighter and smaller.

    You'll love it...I have it on the Pen2 and use it with manual lenses and sometimes in very bright light.

    Don't pay attention to me....Ray's got it right!
  4. VF-2 advantage

    This is a good thread for you to have started and that I can relate to. As we both are moving into this platform, my biggest objection to the EP was the sunny day/LCD problem. Last Saturday, I had a chance to use an EP-2 with the VF-2! It was amazing to me and it sealed the deal; I purchased the E-PL1 at the nearby Best Buy that night before their sale ended. The EVF really makes the EP body a viable contender for my photography now. The diopter is necessary for me and it really worked well.

    Now, the dilemma is to get the VF-2! In the meantime, I will experience, again, the reason I moved from a Nikon p&s! :mad:

    For the time being, I still am using my standard dslr along side the m4/3. (also awaiting the adapter for my Olympus lenses!) Good luck with your gear!
  5. BBW

    BBW Super Moderator Emeritus

    Check out this thread: I have posted within it a number of threads that extol the virtues of the EVF. Personally, I couldn't function without it.

    Read through the threads, then go immediately to one of our affiliate links (see the mu-43 shopping Mall little white square up at the top right if you want to support the forum and if it works for you) and order one, or put your name on the list to pre-order or be notified when they are in stock.:wink:

    On a serious note, I do love the EVF as does just about everyone who has one but there are many who use their E-P1 without an EVF and do wonderfully.
  6. JThomas

    JThomas New to Mu-43

    Jun 16, 2010
    Yes. Even though I have the GF1, with a notably inferior finder, I find it quite a benefit.
  7. Nzsmith

    Nzsmith New to Mu-43

    Jun 23, 2010
    Ottawa Ontario Canada
    I agree with Ray and would add that with the progressive lens that I have to wear now, I'm forced to peer, uncomfortably, through the bottom part of my eyeglasses to see the screen properly. I'll still use it of course, but I wouldn't be without my vf-2.

    • Like Like x 1
  8. dcisive

    dcisive Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 19, 2010
    Salt Lake City, Utah
    Real Name:
    I actually find it hard to believe that anyone that has used a VF-2 could consider it a non essential part of the system. Having come from the DSLR world I do not do well with reliance upon any LCD for my composition let alone ability to see what I'm doing in bright sunlight. It's just not gonna happen. I'd say more than 50% of what I do requires the use of a VF-2. It is well implemented on the PL1 to say the least. I consider it a "must have" for anyone that takes their photography half way seriously. If you're just a "point and shooter" you may be able to get by without it.
  9. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    dc... I'm just a point & shooter but...
    for me the finder changes the form into something I never liked. My brain thinks it's like a slr.
    Without it, my brain thinks it's like a Leica M.

    I resist using it out of mental rebellion, that being said, when I use it, it's great.
    Luckily for what I do it's not a necessity unless I'm on MF lenses.
  10. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs Super Moderator

    Apr 17, 2010
    Near Philadephila
    I don't buy that at all. I've spent plenty of time with SLRs and with point and shoots and plenty of time with eye-level viewfinders and plenty of time relying on the LCD. There are definitely times I'm glad to have the EVF and I use it those times. Mostly having to do with really bright sunlight, but also when I'm shooting with the 45-200, which is more of a DSLR type experience to begin with because of the relative heft. But I'd say its on for no more than 25% of the shots I take, probably a lot less mostly. And I don't find the shots taken without it any less "serious" than those taken with it, let alone "halfway" :cool:. Most of the best stuff I've taken in the few months I've had this camera now has been taken without it. I don't begrudge you liking it and using it, but if I had really thought I'd use it for more than half of what I shot, I'd have probably gone for a built-in evf model like the G-1 or GH-1.

    You can call me a point and shooter if you like, but if Don (shooter) is a point and shooter, then that's a status I REALLY REALLY aspire to and would wear it like a badge of honor.

  11. alevan

    alevan New to Mu-43

    Jun 24, 2010
    How does the image size when viewing through the viewfinder compare to an Olympus E3 for example? Is it as large or smaller? Nobody has one in stock in the local photo shops so I can't compare it to my E3.
  12. nokiamia

    nokiamia Mu-43 Regular

    May 20, 2010
    The image size from the evf is quite satisfying. It's about the same as when you peep into a Canon 550 dslr.

    My take on this topic is, I use the evf when I can't rely much on the LCD, ie on a bright day and using manual lens. On these 2 occasions, the evf is priceless.

    Other than that, I'd use the lv.
  13. et100

    et100 Mu-43 Regular

    Feb 15, 2010
    Chicago area - USA
    I got it recently and like it a lot. It takes the guesswork out of shooting during bright days!
    Also very helpful when shooting long lenses (i use it with 40-150 and 70-300) both for focusing accuracy and for better steadying the camera with a heavey/long lens.

    It should also hold its value a lot better than bodies since you can use it for multiple models of (present and future) oly cameras.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. GaryInOz

    GaryInOz Mu-43 Regular

    May 11, 2010
    Sydney, Oz
    +1 :thumbup:
  15. Akashi

    Akashi Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 1, 2010
    Tromso, Norway
    I just got it and second this! It is absolutely wonderful :smile:
  16. LisaO

    LisaO Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Mar 18, 2010
    New York Metro Area
    Real Name:
    EVF is necessary if:
    1-you are over 40
    2-you use legacy manual focus lenses
    3-you wear glasses
  17. Brian Mosley

    Brian Mosley Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    4-you use lenses >100mm fl
    5-you use a tripod (looking down into EVF)
    6-you have a small LCD (E-PL1)

    I'm sure there are other reasons... but I still prefer to carry the EVF off the cam, add it for the shots I need.


  18. pdh

    pdh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 6, 2010
    what LisaO and Brian said
  19. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    Real Name:
    Just opened mine up - totally worth it!
    • Like Like x 1
  20. Brian S

    Brian S Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Apr 11, 2009
    I was using the EP2 with EVF at the skating rink, and could pan to get the action. I took the EVF off for a few shots- could not successfully get the picture. The EVF makes it an extension of your eye. The LCD screen is like watching it on a TV and trying to use a "Pause" button.
    • Like Like x 1