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Ooh what's this button do? New M43 owner-to-be

Discussion in 'Welcomes and introductions' started by Ritualnet, Jun 21, 2012.

  1. Ritualnet

    Ritualnet Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 21, 2012
    UK - West Midlands
    Hi, I've just won a GF1 + 20mm f1.7 lens off Ebay (£350), with the intention of joining the M43 movement. My DSLRs are too heavy and bulky to carry around all the time, especially when on holiday (I used to spend so much time fiddling with a camera, or carrying a lowepro bag over my shoulder with flashes/lenses/etc in), and subconsciously I started to neglect them. Now, I take pictures with a HTC One X! I needed a camera to bring me back into taking pictures, and although compacts are cheap, they don't have what I need.

    I am hoping this re-vitalises my photography urges. I used to really enjoy taking pictures, back with an old canon powershot and D40, but I've lost it, with the whole need to prepare (mentally or physically) before each shot. I went to a concert, and spent 90% of it behind the lens, taking some reasonable shots, but it hit me afterwards, that I hadn't even experienced the concert, I was more focused on pictures. That kind of put me off, but now, with a slim M43 camera and a pancake lens which is the only one I'll own for a while, I'm hoping to put the fun back into all of this.

    I've hit this site a few times when looking for M43 information, mostly because it is very difficult to work out the best "budget" camera in the range. It took me nearly half a year to whittle down the choices, as it seems there is no clear budget winner. Back when I got my Nikon D40, even through it was a budget shooter, it was still highly regarded, and was a no-brains purchase. With the M43 cameras, it's not clear cut. I ended up, juggling the idea of a GF2, GF1 or an early Olympus, having discarded the G range, due to the "it's a smaller DSLR" thoughts.

    Amusingly, after reading a bit deeper, and also after making my purchase, I see the G range Panasonic's, while SLR-like in their construction, are not that much bigger than the GF1, so now I'm wondering if I made my first mistake already. I have found a G1 body for around £109, and now thinking, should I immediately re-sell the GF1 body and snag that G1, getting the decent pancake and the features of the G1 (tilting screen/EVF) in with the deal?

    Argh! as I said, not clear cut (and yes, I am someone who needs reassurance!) :p 

    Anyway, that aside, I'm now going to dig through the forums to find accessories information. I'd like a half case (with the top part), a decent strap, and a polarising filter, so hopefully I'll find some suggestions.
    • Like Like x 1
  2. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Sep 5, 2011
    The GF1 is a very nice camera. In terms of image quality, it and the G1 will be pretty much identical.

    Have you actually been able to hold the G1? While it's not large, I think it is noticeably larger than the GF1.

    I think it really comes down to what's most important to you. The G1 has an EVF. Is that something you'll use, or will you compose on the LCD anyway? Will you really use the articulated LCD? Can you handle both and see which feels best to you, and which version of the control layout feels best to you?

    If you want an EVF, then go with the G1 (or a G2 if you can find one). Otherwise, I'd go with whichever one you think works best in your hands.
  3. Ritualnet

    Ritualnet Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 21, 2012
    UK - West Midlands
    I use what's available, with the D40 it was optical view only, while with other cameras I use the LCD. I've been looking at a Helios optical view finder to drop on top, as I hear the EVF accessory isn't too great for the GF1. A flip LCD is useful for specific features, but to be honest I've never been that shy about grubbing on the floor for a shot. Getting eye-level with a frog once, got me a few strange looks, but hey, all part and parcel. Again, if it's there, I'd use it.

    I've got no real chance of handling any of them, at least until the GF1 arrives.

    If the GF1 and G1 are similar in terms of image quality and important functions, then I'll stick with the GF1, and maybe upgrade later on.
  4. crsnydertx

    crsnydertx Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 31, 2010
    Houston, TX
    It may not matter to you, but the G1 doesn't have video capability. It may be the only μ43 model lacking that feature.
  5. j.SoundLabs

    j.SoundLabs Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 6, 2011
    I think that the GF1 & 20mm pancake are a perfect recipe for getting you back in to daily photography. I have been taking this exact kit with me everywhere I go, everyday, for the last 7 months, and before that I was taking the GF1 & 14-45mm. I have never felt more comfortable bringing a camera with me everyday. The GF1 is discrete (except for the shutter), small, and takes images of very high quality. Yes, the latest generation micro 4/3 cameras are better performing, but they wouldn't exist today if the GF1 and original PEN cameras were just so-so cameras.

    Also, I think for someone who has used mid to high level DSLRs in the past, the comparably small initial investment of the micro 4/3 platform helps ease the mind when you carry it with you day in and day out.
    • Like Like x 2
  6. Ritualnet

    Ritualnet Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 21, 2012
    UK - West Midlands
    I am going to Orlando in Nov, will just the GF1 and 20mm be fine? It will mean less hassle with carry on luggage (i put my camera bag inside the carry on bag) and more space, but is 20mm enough for everyday "touristy" shots?

    What are a list of essentials for a new GF1 owner? Also, I love the look of half cases, but do not understand their purpose, outside of a base to clip the top part to (and some don't even have that!)
  7. Iconindustries

    Iconindustries Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Hey mate you have a very capable camera and lens. Let go of all the other options and just get to know the GF1, in time you will bond with it. It's that kind of camera. I've had the GX1 and I didn't have the same feeling as the GF1, To put it in Clarkson's words 'this thing has soul'.

    Last year I went to Europe and took the GF1 and 20m lens and it went everywhere with me- even the battery life of the GF1 surpasses the OM-D!

    These are the threads I wrote up when I came back. Check 'em out....



    It won't be until you're comfortable with what you have is when you will start to see what you really have.

    all the best,
  8. Ritualnet

    Ritualnet Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 21, 2012
    UK - West Midlands
    I've never really had a camera that I bonded with that much. I guess it's always been a case of "Ah this is neat but... what else could I have got?". I think, if I ditch my Dynax 5d *, I then have a D40 in case I ever need to do anything 'professional' again,, but have the GF1 for everything else.

    They are simply stunning. I see you managed to capture London perfectly in the subway shot! If that's what you can do with just the GF1 and a 20mm lens, then I'm set!

    * I know it's the rage to use non standard lenses with adapters... I have a fish-eye style lens for my Dynax 5d (large bulging dome-like glass at the front), wondering if it's worth getting an adapter for the GF1?
  9. MizOre

    MizOre Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 26, 2011
    The GF1 with a 20mm lens is my walkabout setup in Nicaragua -- a great lens and camera for environmental portraits.

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