Original OMD EM5 ---buy new glass or body or??

davidzvi

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.......
Lets see...davidzvi thanks for the comment and interest. I think you are probably correct on your take on the Nikon lens list but I have decided to forego those. Interestingly the guy with the lens list got in touch with the shop owner where he posted his list saying he had another body and some lenses for sale..... She gave me his number, I left a message and a text and so far no response..... after all of this I think I am going to stick with u4/3 and with Oly.
.......
Just for context, I'm a bit of a gear head and before getting into m4/3 I shot Nikon, including 12 years professionally (all in the digital age). Nikon kit lenses aren't bad, but Olympus kit lenses are better.

There are some nice older Nikon lenses that might be worth a look to use adapted, just not these. The best options I think for adapted lenses (of several brands) might be for macro since manual AF is the norm in many cases anyway. The Nikon 60 or 105 f/2.8D (the old pre AF-S versions). Sigma and Tokina also made some nice macros. There's also one of my favorites that had a "marco lite" ability, the old 28-105 AF 3.5-4.5D. It will do 1:2 macro from 50-105mm, I used it for event macro and adapted for a little bit when I first got into m4/3.
 

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orphanedinode

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Hi Davidzvi
Interesting information on lenses.Thanks very much for this. I have never tried "cross pollinating"systems with adapters. My electronic shooting has been either Sony(very early) Nikon or Oly, my first Nikon being a D90.... which is interesting because the guy with the Nikon lenses made a remark about having another body. Finally got in touch with him earlier today and he does. I was hoping he had some u4/3 gear that he couldnt make work for whatever he was doing but no it is APSC, he has a D90 that he wants to sell with the lenses. D 90 made some nice photos but I dont want to go to a 13 year old body and back to APSC. A flight to the US to pick up a body isnt that expensive so with the kind help of you and a lot of others here I think I am going to hold out for the EM 1 ii or iii or the EM5 iii. The info you have given me is very much appreciated particularly on the macro since that is about 60% of what I shoot. In fact I went back down to the river to see if from the lip on this side I could determine exactly where the path we cut was and how close to the mouth of the cave we are.... and for all of our work the jungle here is so thick you can not even see what we have done. When actuallly on the face its impossible to determine where one is most of the time except for rare glimpses of landmarks. Makes one think about how insignificant is the admittedly hard work of man when in nature's garden..... speaking of which from my vantage point there were any number of bees busy on flowers..... one close to me and I switched the 12-50 into macro mode and captured her at work while warily watching me. Developed this in darktable. Overcast day even so I was shooting against a lighter background so backed the exposure off a bit. In pp pushed chroma, vibrance and saturation a bit as well as picked back up on the exposure that I decreased when I made the shot to protect highlights.....
Regards
 

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doady

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60-80% slope at 70 years, eh? Maybe E-M5 III + 12-45mm F4 would be good. 60mm F2.8 for macro and eventually the upcoming 40-150mm F4 for wildlife, a full weather-sealed kit for the outdoors, but not a big burden for demanding hikes. E-M5 III has the phase detect AF too.

E-M1 II or III + 12-100mm F4 is a good all-in-one combination, easy to carry around, if it can satisfy all of your needs. But if you want to carry additional lenses for macro and wildlife, then it's not an all-in-one combination anymore, and 12-100mm F4 is already big and heavy enough alone, and quite expensive too, as RAH pointed out.
 

orphanedinode

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Hey Doady

60-80% slope at 70 years, eh?

I can still do it just not all day and not consecutive days in a row..... :)
I like your recommendation of the EM1 body with the 12-100 F4 with a macro lens as well. What I probably will end up with is the EM1 ii or iii shooting my 12-50 3.5-6.3 to start. It will do macro but I am sure not as well as the 60 F 2.8. That probably will be the starting point although admittedly limited.... When I went back down to the river I took a number of shots of the cave mouth and the face leading up to it. Here is one. Interesting country no??
 

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doady

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I use E-M1 II + 12-100mm, and I think it's great, but I just explore a city without steep slopes, and I don't have to carry any other lenses in the bag. To add lenses for better macro or more telephoto power into the same bag, and do 6 hour long excursions up 60-80% slopes in rough wilderness might be more demanding than my experience. E-M1 II was designed for bigger lenses, and the 12-100mm is bigger so it can be a single lens solution, and they would be a big change from E-M5 and 12-50mm not only in terms of cost, but also in terms of weight, so just keep that in mind.

That country is definitely very interesting from the photos you have posted here, @orphanedinode. If you would like to post them, I would definitely be interested in seeing more photos, not only to see more of this country, but also see the problems that you have been experiencing with your gear, and maybe we might be able to provide some advice too.
 

orphanedinode

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Hi Doady
Great advice. Thanks for this. I am not sure that the ii with the 12-100 would not be lighter than my OM5 with the 12-50, a spare battery and the 40-150 4-5.6 that I normally carry. That would be an interesting comparison although I suspect the OM1 bodies may be a bit heavier than the OM 5 is.

My problem with this last effort was that I packed wrong. Absolutely.. That and things got a lot more difficult the farther up we got vis a vis traction and slope. I had too much gear with me.
If you would like to see more of my work, some of it is at

orphanedinode.gumroad.com

although I have been a bit remiss in updating that site over the last 10 days or so. Some of what you see here is going to appear on the gumroad site. If you so care (and anyone else here) to visit the site, I would very much like critique of what I have done there. The Gumroad site is representative of my work since about 2012.

Someone earlier asked me how I recognized the cave and what I hope to find there..... in other words, why was I trying to go there....
How did I become aware of the cave..... that is a really interesting question surrounded by a little woo woo...... this canyon is midway between the volcanoes of Imbabura

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imbabura_Volcano

and Cotacachi volcano

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cotacachi_Volcano

and is about 1 1/2 miles from where I live. I have either mountain biked or hiked this valley extensively over the last 3 years that I have lived in this part of Northern Ecuadorian highlands. A number of years before Ecuador I lived in Mexico. Places in the Sierra Madre Sur, east of Acapulco are similar to this. When I lived there I would go into the mountains and explore peaks and caves, find ancient runes and cave paintings...or at least they appeared ancient to my untrained eye.... and go to places where I wondered if I was the only human that had ever been there....

So the shot of the canyon is from the opposite side of the river....the Cotacachi side of the river facing East or toward the Imbabura (cave) side. Notice the tops of the trees on the east side of the river are illuminated but the bottoms.... and the canyon wall is in shadow likewise the cave mouth......

In the afternoon with a western sun lighting the east wall of the canyon, light is constantly changing. BC or Before Cave I looked across the valley and thought there were just a group of trees growing over there , the tree tops formed the arch, trees clinging to an opportunistic location on that face.......

Until one day the light was just right, I looked across the valley after a day of hiking ( maybe something about my eyes or perspective changed....) and it was a "Holy Crap" moment. I recognized that it appeared to be a cave. Pulled out the camera screwed on the telephoto and took a dozen shots of it. Got back home PP'ed them and on my 24" monitor yes it sure looks like a cave.......

It looks like the cave is difficult to get to. Best way is rappel down from the top, explore and go out the same way you go in, but ascent. I no longer have the gear to do that and the opposite canyon wall..as is all of it, pretty crappy geology. So its somewhat of a given its difficult. The herdsmen who run cattle along the river have never noticed the cave either and none of them have ever tried going up the walls to explore. When asked about excavations in the canyon wall for any purpose all of them say no-not in their lifetimes.....These are people who have been in the canyon daily for 40+ years. So there is a chance its unexplored or very infrequently visited.....

What might be there?? What do I hope to find?? Part of the old fiber optic link between Teotihuacan in Mexico and Machu Picchu in Peru that connected the ancient but advanced civilizations in the distant past before the Younger Dryas? Or maybe a warp drive or a black hole or a portal.....or a mummy or a lost Inca treasure...... realistically it would be great to see ancient appearing inscriptions on the walls from possibly a tribe that may have peopled this valley when the volcanoes were still active....if I find human remains, (as I have in the past in remote places) out of respect I will touch nothing, pay my respects and quietly leave...... a treasure would be great but....just the idea of going there is enough. I also am making a trail in that is not evident because I dont want the place to be staled by being accessible and a place where someone that makes the effort finds old Twinkies wrappers and plastic bottles. Magic is (for me anyway) the existence of wild places not common place, not some location that is easy for day trippers , people who dont know exploration and solitude and quiet....who dont understand that effort is part of value in getting to a less traveled, less visited location..... not something easy and common now that seemingly all existence for most is living in a concrete box in a concrete jungle with human interaction and experience limited to cell phones and social media where everything is a selfie opp to get points to be an influencer, a post to garner likes in "lookie where I have been!"

I started exploring before cell phones and social media, driven to seek out solitude and nature. I continue today (I am 70) for the same reason....maybe what I find there if I am lucky enough to be able to get there.... and the fact that I am discrete with making a way in.....will be that with my care and respect....all of this will be repeated in 50 or 100 years by someone also looking for what these places hold.... and they will have a rewarding experience and treat it as I am treating it for someone else in another 50 or 100 years.......that would be more than enough.
 

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Saledolce

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From your opening post I got two elements: landscapes and constrained budget.

I would focus on glass and forget the adapters, a waste of money, adapted glass wouldn’t give you 1 more keeper per trip.

Oly pro glass is the way to go, I would probably start from 12-40 f2.8 or the new 12-45 f4. Keeps the size reasonable but bumps the IQ up by a lot compared to what you have.

12-100 is a fantastic lens indeed, but not something I’d suggest if budget is limited. On the original em5 you would not use the dual IS, one of the biggest reasons to pick that lens.
 

doady

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I just looked up the original E-M5 and it has 16 megapixels, weather-sealing and 5 axis image stabilization? Yeah, I am not sure you will see a big improvement with a newer body. The 12-50mm F3.5-5.6 lens has weather-sealing too? But it still might worth to upgrade to 12-45mm F4, but it doesn't have as much macro capability, so you would need to get a dedicated macro lens as well.

Looking at your photos, major technical flaws are not the main thing I notice, at least at that resolution. If you decide to upgrade your lens, I would also invest in a good polarizing filter for those skies and landscapes and foliage. Also consider experimenting with photographing trees and flowers under cloudier skies, including with a polarizer, for softer light to de-emphasize harsh shadows and highlights, and help those colours stand out more.
 

orphanedinode

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Saledolce
Thanks for the great suggestions- I am going to try to get the 12-40 2.8 with whichever (EM1 ii or iii) body I get but want to try to find the lens used......

doady
Thanks for looking at what I have there. You are correct both the lens and camera are weather sealed. Agreed on the polarizing filter.Good suggestion about shooting under cloudier skies. Sunlight here in the mountains can be pretty harsh.
Again thanks for looking at the site. The 12-50 does pretty well as macro and whatever body I get I am going to shoot it on that body for a while primarily as a macro lens to see how it does if I can find a 12-40 2.8 at a good price....
The OMD EM5 has been a great camera and gets shot almost every day here..... still excellent although I need the inside of the viewfinder glass cleaned and there isnt anyone in Ecuador that can do that. One of the things I want to be able to do is focus stacking to try to help with shots where I want a deeper DOF. that is the primary reason I want to upgrade bodies.
 
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You did mention that the viewfinder made focusing difficult. The E-M5 has only 1.4 MP at 0.58x magnification. If the viewfinder is important to you, any newer Olympus with a viewfinder is an upgrade!
E-M1 ii, E-M1 iii have nice and large viewfinders. But they are rather new and comparatively expensive models.

Why not a used camera? E-M5 ii and iii are weather sealed and feature larger EVFs with 2.4MP of resolution.

If you want to stay within budget and still have money left over for lenses? This side of the pond, these two models are approaching 200€ on the used market:
E-M1 Mark I has a large 2.4MP LCD viewfinder with 0.74x magnification, and is weather sealed. It uses the same batteries as your current camera.
E-M10 ii the same resolution, at 0.62x magnification, beautiful OLED panel with lots of contrast. It's not weather sealed but it's lightweight

That's what I would do, skip the newer bodies and get a used cam.
Instead, invest in glass - 12-45 or 12-40 Pro as others suggested, keep the 40-150 for telephoto. Get a nice sharp prime of your preferred focal length for low-light stuff.
Keep the E-M5 with the 12-50 around as a backup or for light macro work. I think the macros on your page are already quite good. Maybe save up for a bit and get a 30 or 60mm macro later. Perhaps in a couple of months, when the new macro from Olympus is released and people panic-sell their existing lens :) 30mm is only 150€ here on the used market...
 
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Bushboy

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Keep your gear small, lightweight and rain proof.
Focus stacks can be done with software.
Swap out the mk1 for a mk2.
 

orphanedinode

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Hi Shreebles
You make some good points. One thing leading me to one of the newer bodies is the increased resolution of the sensor, another is higher sensor dynamic range. If I am going to buy another body I am going to go ahead and spend money on something recent. I completely agree with you on glass though. I may consider an EM5 iii.I would love to find what I am looking for used and am looking.. Friends in the US tell me that a lot of the pawn shops are full of bodies and lenses of course I am not where I can go look without a trip back so. And yes an EM 1 ii or iii used I would jump at. I really like my EM5 i and hope on a trip back that I can find someone who will clean the inside of the viewfinder glass. And yes its a pain to focus manually depending on what I am shooting and 95 % of my macro work is manual. I also want to pick up a prime for LL work as well....

Bushboy
Could not agree more. Light weight and rain proof.....
Far as focus stacking with software, I need to try to learn to do that with either Darktable or Rawtherapee. I left Adobe when my laptop (Lightroom) died and dont like the idea of Software as a Service. I strictly run Linux.

Think I mentioned it earlier but I bought the EM5 when I left the US in 2012. I back packed in Colombia, Peru and here in Ecuador for years. The camera has just been excellent and the experience I have had with it is the reason I am going to stay with Olympus. I feel more strongly about this camera than any other I have ever owned.

thanks both of you for the excellent help and wisdom.

Edit--since my writing this looked over the dpreview review of the EM5 iii..... an impressive camera.
 
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Hi Shreebles
You make some good points. One thing leading me to one of the newer bodies is the increased resolution of the sensor, another is higher sensor dynamic range. If I am going to buy another body I am going to go ahead and spend money on something recent. I completely agree with you on glass though. I may consider an EM5 iii.I would love to find what I am looking for used and am looking.. Friends in the US tell me that a lot of the pawn shops are full of bodies and lenses of course I am not where I can go look without a trip back so. And yes an EM 1 ii or iii used I would jump at. I really like my EM5 i and hope on a trip back that I can find someone who will clean the inside of the viewfinder glass. And yes its a pain to focus manually depending on what I am shooting and 95 % of my macro work is manual. I also want to pick up a prime for LL work as well....

Bushboy
Could not agree more. Light weight and rain proof.....
Far as focus stacking with software, I need to try to learn to do that with either Darktable or Rawtherapee. I left Adobe when my laptop (Lightroom) died and dont like the idea of Software as a Service. I strictly run Linux.

Think I mentioned it earlier but I bought the EM5 when I left the US in 2012. I back packed in Colombia, Peru and here in Ecuador for years. The camera has just been excellent and the experience I have had with it is the reason I am going to stay with Olympus. I feel more strongly about this camera than any other I have ever owned.

thanks both of you for the excellent help and wisdom.

Edit--since my writing this looked over the dpreview review of the EM5 iii..... an impressive camera.
Having both 1 & 5 there's a marked difference in size.
Some feel the 5 doesn't feel right with big lenses.
I use the 40-150 Pro and the Panasonic 100-400 and don't hold the gear by the camera but by the tripod collar. I find that extremely comfortable for me.
Just mention as I'd be more than comfortable using the large lenses on the EM5 2 or 3.
That said the 100-400 lives permanently on the EM1 2
Not sure if any of that helps your thoughts
 

orphanedinode

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Avondale87
Yes this does help my thinking. Thanks for sharing the experience. In my Nikon days I would end up holding either my D90 or my D 7000 by the lens more than the body, depending on the lens.... so understand the necessity to do this. Your sharing your experience is much appreciated. Since my last post I have had 2 people offer me older Nikon apsc dslr's-- finding out about about my camera search through a local shopkeeper here where I live in Ecuador. I am told there will be a third Nikon offering Monday. I also have posted a wanted sign on their bulletin board--Wanted Olympus Cameras and Lenses OMD EM1 ii, OMD EM1 iii OMD EM5 iii so maybe someone here in the expat community bought and brought too much stuff and the EM1 iii and lenses have been sitting in the closet in boxes and they dont use them any longer..... I can dream right??

Regards & happy shooting to all this weekend!
 

Bushboy

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Yep, dreams are free...
M1 mk3 and lenses to go, won’t be. 😀
 

rezatravilla

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Given that one is able to buy a new OMD EM1 ii for less than $1000 now and given the Oly glass that I have-- is a better way forward i.e. something that will make a discernible difference in image quality to just shoot the lenses that I have now with an EM1 ii?
I use Pen F and the jump from 16 to 20 sensor feels significant especially in high ISO performance. So EM1 II should be too.
It's good upgrade and now days Olympus still using EM1 II's sensor for their new cameras right
 

Bushboy

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Even cheaper if you shop around on internet.
$850 American here in NZ.
 

orphanedinode

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Bushboy--you are correct but there is hope!!
RAH-- Excellent !--- I am amazed, humbled and forever appreciative of your most awesome suggestion-- GAF!! In fact you could start a GAF website for photographers were you so inclined and a number of us here could team up and write GAF fiction for those late night fantasies of gearheads yes??
Rezatravilla thanks for the report. Aside from wanting new glass I also want the newer and larger sensor. From what I have inferred both here and elsewhere and as you point out, high ISO is better. I also am under the impression that the dynamic range of the new sensor is going to be a bit better as well. Thanks very much for the information.

And see what makes this difficult is there is a pretty EM 1 ii for sale in the Sale section here. Pics show a beautiful body and around 9K actuations. Problem is I have to try to get this into Ecuador either with a trip back to the US ($400 air fare more or less) then a place to stay for a few days...or have it shipped and probably pay $600 duty and shipping. Life is not easy sometimes.. Think I am going over to gaf.com and read the latest to calm down.......

Bushboy you are correct (less on the internet)--available for less but my geography problem remains.... Still working on figuring that one out.

Watching the sadness on La Palma--if anyone here is there stay safe..... I live midway between 2 volcanoes and what I am seeing of this eruption is completely chilling....
 
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Bushboy

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I suffer GAF all day every day.
And not just camera GAF... lol
 

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