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OM-D first time purchase

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by paulsut, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. paulsut

    paulsut New to Mu-43

    Oct 2, 2012
    After spending a lot of time with SLR cameras many moons ago before digital I lost the habit, although I still have my Nikon FE and 50mm /1.4 lens in a cupboard as I am loathe to part with it. Settling down with a family 10-15 years ago and not having time or resources for serious photography I was amazed by a couple of compact film cameras - the Yashica T5 and the Olympus mu range which gave sharp as a tack images on a budget, but of course with little control. In 2004 I bought a Nikon D50 but never really fell for it and used my wife"s Canon Ixus a lot more. So I fall into the classic micro 4/3 target audience - I want the convenience of a compact but the quality of something better. I want to cover the whole range (don't we all?) - portraits, travel, landscapes and architecture being my key interests. Anyway, following a lucky bonus I managed to put together a budget of around US$2000 / US$2500 and am thinking of the following set up (with current US Amazon prices...)

    OM-D EM-5 - Body only $999
    Olympus 45/1.8 $399
    Panasonic 14 / 2.5 $261
    Panasonic 20/1.7 $360
    Panasonic 45-175 $299

    I have seen the posts rating the 25mm above the 20mm lens but I think the size and lower price of the 20mm win it for me. Am I a fool to reject the standard lenses? Well I think with this set up the 45-175 will be more useful than the 12-50 which is effectively the same price. 14-42 is tempting for a $100 extra on top of the body only price I suppose, but no use if it's not used. And I would rather spend the $100 (alright $139) on an EPL-1 as a spare camera which would seem to work nicely with the 20mm lenses.

    Any thoughts, tips or advice would be welcome!
  2. gunky

    gunky Mu-43 Rookie

    Oct 2, 2012
    Epl1 it's one of the worst m4/3 olympus cameras. the plastic body takes less stress and damaged and can occur problems on the stabilizer. choose the ep-2 or the ep-3 instead.
  3. Hyubie

    Hyubie Unique like everyone else

    Oct 15, 2010
    Careful, that statement just might draw ires from a lot of people. :smile: At the top of my head, see littleMT's car photos - if I am not mistaken she uses the E-PL1. Some people also say it churns out better images that its successors because of its weaker AA. I for one wouldn't mind having it as backup. I don't have it anymore, but I've had really good ones with it. :wink:
  4. brutto

    brutto Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Feb 17, 2011
    Hi Paul and welcome to the forum. If I were in your shoes, I wouldn't buy everything at once. I'd get the camera and one lens - for me it would be the 20/1.7 and get to know the camera and that lens first. Then I'd have a fair idea whether I needed wider or longer next. Again, for me it would be the 45/1.8. I don't think there's much you can't do with those two lenses.
  5. Grinch

    Grinch Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 9, 2011
    Just a hint, the panny 14 2.5 is selling on eBay for $160 - $180 or there abouts.
    Also you might want to research the 20 in regards to lock up with the OMD, it has caused some issues and has some people opting for the 25. Disregard lack luster comments about the E-Pl1...it is a very capable little camera, and is reported to give sharper images than the OMD by some users(as mentioned due to weaker AA filter). The 45-175 has also had issues with blur at certain shutter speeds, you may want to check out the oly 40-150.
  6. zpuskas

    zpuskas Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 25, 2011
    Santa Barbara, CA
    I would consider buying some nice used equipment from some of the members here to save a few bucks and get the feel of the m4/3 system.
    I agree with "brutto", don't buy everything at once.
  7. Salc64

    Salc64 Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 24, 2012
    New York. USA
    Well I know the 25 is expensive but if you pick1 up you can skip the 20 and the 25 and end up saving money..... The 45-175 has you covered in the 45mm department and the 25 is very close to the 20 and in my opinion more usable. And you still have the 14 for a wider view.....
  8. Salc64

    Salc64 Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 24, 2012
    New York. USA
    ^ I meant skip the 20 and 45 not 25
  9. SkiHound

    SkiHound Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 28, 2012
    It's all good but it comes down to what you shoot and need. My take is 14-42, Panny 20 or 25, and Oly 40-150. Why? It gives a broad range of focal lengths to explore and identify what focal lengths you like to shoot at and I think a fast prime is a lens that everyone should have in their bag. A fast prime with the IBIS in the E-M5 really opens up a lot of opportunities. Personally I think the 40-150 is way better optically than it has any right being. Maybe I just got a really good copy. Go out and set your lenses to specific focal lengths and see how they work for you. Then add the primes that you would use. I have the 45 f1.8. I really like the IQ. But I may sell it simply because I find I'm rarely using it. The focal length just isn't the way I see I guess.
  10. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Make sure to try the E-PL1 before buying it. While the price and IQ are right, many people find the controls and build unsatisfactory. A refurbished E-PM1 would be my recommendation for a second body.

    As to the main kit, I'd think twice about getting all the lenses at once, and think at least 3 times about whether you really only want primes in the 14 to 45mm range.

    My suggestion for a starting kit would be the E-M5 + 14-42 and the 20. That'll cover most typical scenarios, and you can then expand your lenses on an as needed basis. Also worth waiting a few weeks for the new E-PM2 and E-PL5 to start shipping. They may well drive the E-M5 price down. Also, if you've not tried the Pens, it's worth comparing the feel. If what you really want is DSLR performance in a compact body, the Pens are closer than the E-M5 (which is after all modeled after a small DSLR).

  11. Chrisnmn

    Chrisnmn Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 26, 2012
    Auckland, New Zealand
    How long till some Epl1/er screams and start shooting...this could be one of "those" threads...

    Like someone said. Buy the camera and one lens and go by that. do not buy everything all at once. enjoy and have fun shooting.
  12. paulsut

    paulsut New to Mu-43

    Oct 2, 2012
    Thanks for all the useful advice! Yes, it probably does not make sense to buy everything at once, and also live with the zooms for the time being and then move onto primes if I feel I am limited by the quality or - more likely - the speed of the lenses. I hadn't seen the Olympus 40-150 and this does seem to be very well regarded in online reviews. So I figure I will pair this with the 14-42 to give me a good range and then pick up a fast prime - probably the 20mm - for the time being. Good thoughts on the EPL1 - yes, the build quality is not great, and as a spare camera / pocket camera, the advice to look at the E PM1 was useful - seems I can pick up a refurb for around $170 which may be worth the extra $50 from the cost of a refurb EPL. On the topic of refurbs - I see you can get a refurb of the OMD itself with the 14-42 for $949, which will probably protect me from the inevitable price drop that will happen the week after I purchase...

    thanks to everyone again!
  13. limpeh09

    limpeh09 Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 21, 2012
    I bought my omd with 12-45 kit lens. I added a 45-200 zoom. Got a few manual Om lenses 50mm and 28mm to go along.
  14. limpeh09

    limpeh09 Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 21, 2012
    Sorry its a 12-50 kit lens.
  15. kundalini

    kundalini Mu-43 Regular

    Aug 20, 2011
    Something to consider...... rent it first.

    I just placed an order with LensRentals for the OMD, the grip, 12-35 f/2.8 & 75mm f/1.8 lenses for a 10 day run begining next week. I do a week in the NC mountains every October. I have the E-P3 and 3 lenses, so I thought this would be a to time to do a head-to-head comparison to see if I want to upgrade. The ten day rental will only get you one back from a three hundred dollar bill.

    I have been nursing some herniated discs over the last few months and the Nikon gear is definetly staying at home. I'm so happy that I bought into the m4/3 format about a year ago.
  16. Laurentiu Cristofor

    Laurentiu Cristofor Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 9, 2012
    Like brutto and dhazeghi also said, don't rush to build a kit - it will never be perfect anyway. Just get a lens you really know you want, use it, and then take it from there. The MFT lens lineup is growing very fast and there are new releases all the time - give yourself some time to see what's coming up.
  17. Bhupinder2002

    Bhupinder2002 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    :confused:  Sir , EPL1 is still better than many MFT cameras as far as IQ goes and many members are using it as primary tool. Please see pics by our member littleMT and u night throw ur current camera body in trash bin :rofl:. For USD 119 how ,much value for money you can get? I had EPL1 for a while and here are some pics.

    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)

    This one is indoor at ISO 800 with kitlens taken by my 6 year old daughter
    Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)
  18. Grinch

    Grinch Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 9, 2011
    Also, if your thinking of the 14-42 and the 40-150 why not just get the oly super zoom 14-150?
  19. Laurentiu Cristofor

    Laurentiu Cristofor Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 9, 2012
    It's the classic quality vs convenience tradeoff.
  20. LeoS

    LeoS Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 6, 2012
    I'd like to add that the superzoom 14-150mm that retails for $599 is available refurbished for $340.

    Btw, the 20mm seems to hunt a LOT on my OM-D. It focuses much faster on my GX-1 body. The 25mm doesn't have that issue on OM-D.
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