Sacrilege! I think I prefer the VF3 over the VF2!

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by WT21, Jun 28, 2012.

  1. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    I have bought and sold the VF2 a couple of times. Currently have one. But a VF3 came for sale on this board for <$100, so I figured "what the heck" and grabbed it.

    WOW! I think I like it much better than the VF2.

    Now, I never purchased the VF3 before, because the used vf2 prices were pretty close to vf3 prices, and why not go for the better resolution, right? In fact, I think the VF3s existence is propping up the used price of VF2s. If there wasn't a vf3, then there'd be more pricing pressure on used vf2s, but vf3s create a market bottom for used vf2s (i.e. "if you don't like my used vf2 price, then just go get a vf3"). Any rate, back to the main topic.

    I wear glasses, and I don't want to take them on/off all the time. I've always used the EP9 eyecup on the VF2, thinking it was better to keep out bright light and also somehow it protected my glasses more. But this makes the VF2 very large, and of course it doesn't lock, so I'm always fiddling around with it, to get it into/out of a bag.

    But here are my findings on the VF3 vs VF2:

    1. The VF3 locking mechanism is a welcome relief
    2. The VF3 is a much more compact size. It still adds bulk to an EPM1, but it's much nicer
    3. The VF3 resolution is poor compared to the VF2, the screen size is smaller (more on that in a moment), and the glass is imperfect, so the edges of the image sort of "swim".
    4. The VF3 is prone to burn out the image, whereas the VF2 makes a better approximation of the exposure, though the VF2 is still imperfect.
    5. While the image on the VF3 is smaller, this is actually better for me wearing glasses. With the VF2, I can never see the whole image. The viewing portal is too small. With the VF3, even though the image is smaller, I can see the whole frame.
    6. With the EP9 eyecup, it's even worse on the VF2, so I removed the eyecup for the first time, and I like the VF2 better (in terms of seeing the whole image) but the eyepoint for the VF3 is still better.

    So, in short: the VF3 is smaller and more secure and cheaper. The smaller image is actually a blessing, in that I can see the whole frame. And though the image tends to be blown out, I just turn on "highlight clipping" and I can see if it's blown out or not.

    If I was doing manual focusing, I would reach for the VF2. But for AF lenses, where I'm using the VF for a) stability and b) viewing in bright sunlight, it seems to me that the VF3 is a very nice choice, though I think $170 is too expensive, and am happy for the used price I paid.
    • Like Like x 6
  2. jmschwartz

    jmschwartz New to Mu-43

    Jun 12, 2012
    St. Marys Ohio USA
    You make excellent points in your description of the two EVFs. I can only add, from a subjective point of view, that my VF3 on my E-P3 is just as pleasing and precise to my astigmatic, 62-year-old eyes as is the built-in VF on my OM-D E-M5. They're both super, IMHO.

  3. Aldredge

    Aldredge Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 12, 2012
    Toronto, ON
    Real Name:
    Thanks for that WT21.

    I loved the pictures in your review with the VF-2, any chance we can see some pictures with the VF-3?
  4. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    On vacation this week. Will try to remember next week, but feel free to PM me after Monday, and I'll take a couple of pics.
    • Like Like x 1
  5. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Real Name:
    Where was the VF3 on sale for less than $100? I'm sure I'm too late but for that price, I'd pick it up for my E-PM1, even though I already have the VF2. But the only deal I was able to spot was an $80 mail-in rebate if you purchased it along with a qualifying camera. The VF3 is now in the $170 range everywhere I look and that's simply too much money.
  6. WT21

    WT21 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 19, 2010
    Got it for under $100 used. New, I think this should list for like $139 with a used price of $100, IMO.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    All excellent points for sure but moot for me because there was no VF3 for me to compare with when I purchased my VF2 :smile:
  8. usayit

    usayit Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Number one reason why I stuck with the VF2. Locking mechanism is not a big bother as I "tie" the VF2 to the camera body via a lens cap keeper. On the other hand, if you can find a VF3 for $100 USD why not?
  9. oly18

    oly18 Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 21, 2011
    I agree with WT21! I had the VF2 but sold it... it was too big and unwieldy, particularly with the EP9 eyecup (for eyeglass wearers). Also hard to get it in and out of the bag.

    I'm loving the VF3 so far and it works pretty well with glasses. It rocks with the smaller pen bodies (I'm using it with an E-PL2). Also I think I prefer the 1.0X view to the 1.5x view. The VF2 does have a nicer picture, but with the smaller view on the VF3, it's not that noticeable.

    Too bad the VF3 doesn't come in black though, although the silver looks not bad even on my black body, particularly when using it with a silver lens.
  10. BAKatz

    BAKatz Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 9, 2010
    Riverdale, NY
    When my newbie self tried them both at B & H, I immediately preferred the VF-2. I didn't have time to try them for long. Unfortunately, they were out of stock. I called Oly direct and had it by the end of the week. In black no less. I have been quite happy.