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Is the LVF1 worth it?

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by agoglanian, Dec 25, 2010.

  1. agoglanian

    agoglanian Mu-43 Regular

    163
    Nov 23, 2010
    Laguna Niguel, CA
    Abram Goglanian
    I've been debating buying the LVF1 for a while now because of the very mixed reviews I've been reading from peoples experience with it. None of my local shops have any stock of them so I cannot try it out for myself.

    I'm aware it won't be as nice as working with my 5DmkII or my other SLRs, but is it at least clear enough to check proper focus? I'm especially interested in using it with manual focus adapted lenses where trying to use the LCD on its own away from my body is quite the challenge.

    Anyone care to share their insights?
     
  2. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    It works. It's not great but not bad at all. It will depend on your expectations.
    For longer lenses and MF it's really ok.
    I use it but rarely as it changes the form of the camera.
    That being said, I would never want to be without it.

    I actually like it better on my LX5.
     
  3. agoglanian

    agoglanian Mu-43 Regular

    163
    Nov 23, 2010
    Laguna Niguel, CA
    Abram Goglanian
    I'm not expecting miracles, just something good enough to tell clear focus with.

    I was waiting and waiting for Panasonic direct to get it back in stock as I could get it for under $100, but that has yet to happen. I did however receive a couple gift cards to Amazon for christmas, and Amazon DOES have it in stock. So it would cost me about $25 out of pocket.
     
  4. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Good deal. It will do what you need it to do.
    I love it with my 50mm J8.
    With the small AF target, it's ok.
     
  5. squidbrand

    squidbrand Mu-43 Regular

    55
    Dec 22, 2010
    Hà Nội, Việt Nam
    The image is too small, the colors are muted, the contrast is poor, and the resolution is disappointing... but I have no regrets about buying it. You probably won't use it in situations where the LCD works fine, but it's good enough that you'll be very glad to have it in other situations.
     
  6. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    That's a nice way of saying what I was trying to say....
    It's certainly a love/hate relationship.
     
  7. dsteady

    dsteady Mu-43 Regular

    71
    Nov 8, 2010
    Chicago
    Agreed. It could be better, but it isn't worse. It is handy in bright light and I turn to it a lot at low t speeds when I want the additional bracing effect of the camera against my cheek.

    I said this on another thread: the relatively low res output has the advantage of making me focus more on composition and not on sharpness. You have to trust that the image capture will be sharp, and with the 20mm pancake it usually is.
     
  8. JudyM

    JudyM Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 5, 2010
    Westminster, MD
    I agree with everyone else, it's not the greatest, but it's helpful enough that I find myself using it more often than not. I held off buying mine until the price dropped to $124 at Amazon and it has not come off the camera since the day I got it. I use manual focus lenses probably three quarters of the time and it makes focusing so much easier. I also think it's a must have for shooting in bright sunlight. Trying to use the camera in bright sun with the LCD blacking out got old in a hurry.
     
  9. CPWarner

    CPWarner Mu-43 Veteran

    244
    Dec 24, 2010
    Cliff
    The LVf-1 was why I switched to the G2. I found myself using it a lot and was not happy with it compared to the live viewfinder in the G/GH series cameras. So as long as you are ok with its limitations already mentioned here (lower resolution and contrast), it allows you to work with a smaller camera body than the G/GH series bodies.
     
  10. Pelao

    Pelao Mu-43 Top Veteran

    959
    Feb 3, 2010
    Ontario, Canada
    I agree with many of the comments here. It could have been a much better device in terms of resolution. But it does work, and when it's useful to me I am very glad to have it. It makes an already outstanding camera even more flexible.
     
  11. Grant

    Grant Mu-43 Veteran

    I owned on for a few days and its value will depend on your shooting style. If you shot exclusively in bright light I suspect it will have been of some value.

    The use of the EVF in bright light was a plus. But, and there were many buts. When I panned quickly the grid overlay and information numbers broke up into multicolour banding I suspect this is due to the refresh rate. As well as this the EVF had a colour shift, increased contrast, had a refresh lag, and seemed too dark in low light. I got a refund and I don't miss not having the EVF.
     
  12. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Grant,
    I keep my screens on B&W. So color shift is no issue.
    The finder is ok with the B&W. The increase in contrast is actually welcomed.
    I just prefer to see the world around my frame and not thru a little window.
    It is what it is.....
     
  13. Grant

    Grant Mu-43 Veteran

    Shooter

    We must be brothers as I keep my screen on B&W for about 90% of all my images, because I feel it helps me to concentrate on composition.

    That being said if I spend $230 (tax included) for an EVF I expect it to behave. I feel it should be neutral so I know where I am starting. If someone mainly shoots in full sun light it may be a good thing for them but I rarely shoot at noon so it wasn't for me.
     
  14. carpandean

    carpandean Mu-43 Top Veteran

    827
    Oct 29, 2010
    Western NY
    It should be noted for anyone deciding now that the LVF1 is less than $145, tax and shipping included. At $230, it was overpriced, but at $145, not so much.
     
  15. Grant

    Grant Mu-43 Veteran

    In Canada the price is still as I quoted. Let me make it clearer, and this is only based on how I shoot and no one else, if I were given one of these EVF it would sit in the bottom of my gadget drawer and gather dust.
     
  16. Streetshooter

    Streetshooter Administrator Emeritus

    Dec 15, 2009
    Phila, Pa USA
    Grant, we are brothers for sure. I'm surprised it took you so long to figure that out......
    Don
     
  17. MikeB10

    MikeB10 Mu-43 Regular

    Very much worth it. An essential part of a GF1 camera bag IMO. It certainly will assist in manual focus requirements and in bright light conditions it is basically a requirement. It does change the form of the camera but is easily removed. It's resolution and contrast limitations seem a non-issue to me.....not sure who would really use their viewfinder for critical viewing anyway. :)
     
  18. agoglanian

    agoglanian Mu-43 Regular

    163
    Nov 23, 2010
    Laguna Niguel, CA
    Abram Goglanian
    Thanks so much everyone for your responses.

    I placed the order yesterday and I should have it by Thursday from Amazon. I only have the 20mm in my hands now but the 14mm is on the way and I have an EOS adapter so the LVF1 should hopefully help with manually focusing those lenses.
     
  19. Pelao

    Pelao Mu-43 Top Veteran

    959
    Feb 3, 2010
    Ontario, Canada
    It would be great to hear from you once you have used the VF for a while.

    By the way - nice collection of Canon glass.
     
  20. agoglanian

    agoglanian Mu-43 Regular

    163
    Nov 23, 2010
    Laguna Niguel, CA
    Abram Goglanian
    Will do! I'll report my findings after I've spent some time with it.

    I have been working with Canon gear for some time now and I use it all for my professional work :). (most of the time that justifies my gear purchases ;))