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Olympus E-P3 owners! Please give me your opinion!

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by BokehFreak, Jan 15, 2013.

  1. BokehFreak

    BokehFreak Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 14, 2013
    New Smyrna Beach, FL
    Dillon Burns
    Hello, new guy here wanting everyone's opinions on the Oly E-P3. I have been using a Canon 40D for a while now and have only used DSLR's but I have found that some of these M4/3 cameras have comparable IQ to at least my 40D and more DSLR's. I have shot professionally and that no longer interests me, I would like to go back to just shooting for fun and as my passion. So I began the search for a comparable camera to a DSLR with speedy AF and good IQ. I found that the M 4/3rds cameras were so similar or at least the compactness of them were so similar to the camera's shot by some of my favorite photographers of all time. Mostly I love to take trips and street shoot here in FL. I also do a lot of portraiture. I love shooting live music as well. I think that the E-P3 will fit my style perfectly. I will be purchasing an E-P3 later today, no matter what. I was just interested in what owners had to say about theirs before I get my hands on this beauty! Thanks for reading my introduction/question and thanks in advance for all your answers! -Dillon

    P.S What's a thread without some photos? Here are a couple of my live music photos for you guys to check out.

    View attachment 13546
    View attachment 13547
  2. mattia

    mattia Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 3, 2012
    The Netherlands
    What glass are you getting with your E-P3? I'm not a huge fan of the higher ISO performance on any of the 12 MP sensors (the E-M5 is the minimum I'm willing to accept in terms of IQ in an interchangeable lens camera), but the system as a whole is great! Only problem is that I really want a few more of the lovely lenses available in the system, but things get pricey, fast :) 
  3. fin azvandi

    fin azvandi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 12, 2011
    South Bend, IN
    The E-P3 has a nice set of features (especially the thumb dial, pop-up wireless flash commander, and touchscreen) and feels great in the hand.

    I prefer to keep it under ISO 800, so faster lenses will help for those live music shots.
  4. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 12, 2012
    Love my ep3! Had a 50d and a 5d. Dont miss them at all...
    High iso noise looks worse when you watch it on the cameras lcd. And better in computer.
    I have done some quick indoor high iso (iso 4000-6400) shots today, I will post them here in an hour or so.

    See u later! /fg
  5. blinkbg

    blinkbg Mu-43 Rookie

    Nov 19, 2012
    Columbus, Ohio
    I have mine for a little over a month now! and I'd say that I really enjoy it! It makes me want to shoot so it's with me in almost every event and or gathering. Very discreet and doesn't command much attention to itself. (silver E-P3)

    Very sleek looking camera, it definitely has style. I prefer it's shape and style over the OMD-Em-5, actually over any other camera for that matter. I hope the rumored E-p5 retains that pen design with E-M5 guts!. The Super control panel is very useful. The touch screen I thought I wasn't going to like but I ended up using it a whole lot more than I intended, and am very excited to see it evolve into something more interactive. I thought I was going to miss having a EVF or OVF but found myself enjoying utilizing the LCD in more ways. To simplify, my camera can go where my face can't, my VF-2 is in the bag most of the time.

    Do invest in lenses: panasonic 25mm or 20mm even the 14mm (use the sony vcl-ecu1 adapter to make it a 21mm a very underestimated combo), Olympus 12mm, 17mm, 45mm and or 75mm. There are high quality zooms but IMHO and experience, primes are still the best.

    The kit lenses are great to start out with, but the primes is where the E-P3 shines the most. Costly but the image quality will definitely make up for that cost. Plus the lowlight performance of those lenses is WOW!!! very very nice.

    I avoid above 1600 iso unless I have to, but then again 2000 to 2500 is very usable for web or small prints.

    But sometime in the future, do invest on FL-600 flash and the larger grip attachment. The built-in flash is useful when you need it. I use 2nd curtain most of the time or put a white business card in front of it to soften the light when not using 2nd curtain.

    This camera can do everything a DSLR can, sometimes better.
    It's biggest test is coming up soon for I will be shooting a small wedding using the E-p3 with 3 primes I really want to put it through a more rigorous pace. So far judging by the small events and gatherings I have been to, with plenty of kids!!! it has exceeded expectations.

    I hope this helps! You will enjoy it!!! once you get used to it, It may take time to learn the tweaks and or capabilities as with all systems anyone is new to.

    Cheers! Olympus Pen!
    • Like Like x 1
  6. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 12, 2012
    Ok, here is the high iso shots. Done by panasonic 20 1.7
    First one: iso 4000 f/1.8 1/160
    View attachment 13548
    Second: iso 6400 f/ 1.8. 1/160
    View attachment 13549
    Third: iso 6400 f/1.7. 1/200
    View attachment 13550

    I think iso 4000 is "ok" for portraits (small prints). iso 6400 is ok for "getting the shot" even with the "very slow AF 20 1.7" :)  but all these shots were better in b&w of course...
    (all pic were shot in RAW and processee by camera raw and photoshop. Adding some noise reduction)
  7. Strick

    Strick Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 8, 2013
    Columbia, MD
    Excellent choice. :thumbup:

    I have had my Ep3 for about 6 months and I think that it is a great camera. Right now my kit consists of the Panny 14 2.5 and the Panny 20 1.7. I am very happy with this setup.

    I really like how you can customize the buttons and dials to fit your shooting style. The touchscreen is something I use a lot more than I thought I would and the touch focus/shutter comes in handy.

    Overall I am very happy with this camera, it is small, discreet, takes excellent photos and has a long list of available lenses.

    Have fun with your EP3!!
  8. mnhoj

    mnhoj There and back again and again Subscribing Member

    Dec 3, 2011
    Los Angeles
    John M
    I really liked the P3 while I had it. Build is very nice and operation feels quick and snappy. Plus, I think it looks great.

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  9. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    There is no doubt it is a great looking camera, along with the e-P1 & e-P2.

    Once they give us the superduper new sensor in this PROPER body I'll be happier.
    At the moment I'm a bit worried about the lack of e-P5, so for now the e-P3 is the ZENITH of the m4/3rds beautiful body category. :cool: 
    • Like Like x 1
  10. PeterB666

    PeterB666 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 14, 2010
    Tura Beach, Australia
    The E-P3 is a lovely camera to shot with but the OM-D E-M5 blows it away with lower noise levels and much better colour for really long exposures in low light. I find the E-M5 RAW images need a lot less processing and therefore retain heaps more detail (and the extra mp helps too). It may be worth waiting for an E-P5 unless you are happy with those limitations. The E-P3 is very cheap at the moment so a good buy.

    Sent from my GT-I9100 using Tapatalk 2
  11. vinay

    vinay Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 18, 2012
    The faster AF and touch screen in the new models was first introduced in the E-P3. However, it's the only one with a built in flash commander (I actually use this all the time) and with the exception of the E-M5, the only one with dual dials.

    Although it lacks the new sensor, it still packs a good punch.
  12. BokehFreak

    BokehFreak Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 14, 2013
    New Smyrna Beach, FL
    Dillon Burns
    Thank you everybody for all your information! Tons of great responses! I did a lot of research and found that I really thought this camera would fit the bill for me. I am very excited to see real peoples opinions match that of review sites and the digitalrev hands on review I watched. It's nice to have confirmation of the equipment you buy. I really enjoyed the sample images Fransglans! Those are a lot more believeable than the high ISO samples provided by Olympus. Still usable quality. I am a strobist so high ISO perfomance doesn't really come into play for me a lot, but its nice to know I have the capability. As for it comparing to the OMD, I expected higher IQ, dynamic range, and color depth from a camera twice the price used as the e-p3 new. Although I don't put too much stock into the MP affecting IQ that much. My 40D was 10.1mp so this is a step up for me. When I have the money I am sure I will buy an OMD or X-pro. Until then I believe this camera will be great! Not that it won't be when I aqquire a higher IQ camera. One thing that I love about this camera like all of you had said, is that gorgeous body. But is it durable? I was a little concerned with its build quality. My 40D was a tank. Also does anyone have any expierence with the ring flash for this camera? As well as the viewfinders. Does anyone actually use theirs. I feel I would do the same as most and end up reverting to that OLED screen. Even though I never used the live view on my Canon except professional portrait work. To answer the question as to what I got with the purchase; I sold my 40D and Canon equipment for $420, seeming as it was a bit outdated. This happened to be enough money for me to afford an Olympus factory refurbished floor model E-P3 with no shutter count, the kit lens, original box and accesories, and a 4 year warranty parts and labor as well as two free cleanings from Olympus all for $450.40. It ships out tomorrow, I am so happy to get my hands on it. I will post images of my first day out with it in this thread. Thank you all again for all the input.
  13. fransglans

    fransglans Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 12, 2012
    Youre welcome! Hope you will be satisfied with your new gear! About the build... I think its very solid. No loose buttons or cheap feeling plastic.
    And to the evf/lcd thing. I didnt thought coming from eos camera that I would enjoy shooting with a lcd. But after 3 months with an 5d it was a relief coming back to the ep3 (took a brake from my ep3,thought that the old dslr would be better)
    And with the good working face detection its a joy to use. Ok it looks "non pro" to shoot with stretch arms... but who cares? :) 
  14. SRHEdD

    SRHEdD Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 24, 2011
    Viera, Florida USA
    I'm in the middle of the NEX cameras right now, but sold my E-P3 to get here. I LOVE the E-P3. It is a great balance of IQ, cost, system development, and just fun to use. The E-PL2 is also, but (to me) now just starting to show its age. I was out of PEN when the E-P5 came out, and agree the OM-D was giving me better IQ, but the E-P3 has that "something" about it as a total package that is still awesome.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Good choice, but don't forget the glass, accessories, and lighting!

    A good piece of glass is the first thing you will need to add to your system. You said you like portraiture and live music, so you'll need some glass which is fast and with a mid-long focal length. I would consider the m.Zuiko 75mm f/1.8 or m.Zuiko 45mm f/1.8.

    For accessories, the VF-2 or VF-3 electronic viewfinders are must haves. :)  If you want to shoot video, then you'll also want to pick up the EMA-1 stereo mic adapter, which will allow you to plug in any 3.5mm microphone.

    For lighting, you might want to check out the new Olympus FL-600R flash. It's very compact, fast, and versatile. It produces a significant amount of power, similar to the Canon 430EXII. If you want something larger and more powerful, the FL-50R is great, producing power similar to the Canon 580EXII, but also similar in size. All the Olympus R-series flash units can be triggered wirelessly, either as a dumb slave from ANY flash on any system, or with TTL from your Remote Commander which is built into the E-P3's pop-up flash.
  16. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    I sold my 40D and all but one lens and I now use the E-P3 as my main camera. I have an E-PL2 as my backup and I also own an E-P1. I didn't think I'd like the touchscreen, but it was a pleasant surprise. I love the size, the ergonomics and the IQ. It's a great camera. :2thumbs:
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