The Flash/EVF Dichotomy

OzRay

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The inability to use an external flash and EVF at the same time is just dumbest design considerations that Olympus could have made (probably applies to the GF1 and now GF2 as well). Olympus/Panasonic have to address this and provide the ability to use both at the same time (and that includes the external mic for those that want to shoot video). I simply can't believe that this wasn't considered and an option provided for a PC sync or to use say the USB slot to connect to an external hotshoe to fire a flash.

Even the EVF could have had a PC sync outlet, if it wouldn't fit anywhere else. I find it so frustrating when doing macro work to have to focus with the EVF attached and then take it off and put on the FL-14 to remotely fire the FL-50Rs. I can't use the E-PL1 with EVF and its built-in flash, to trigger the FL-50Rs, because the USB slot won't accept a remote cable release (more dumbness).

Now I've got an excellent Sunpak ring flash and I'm going to have to do the same swap and go once again. What's more frustrating is that the ring flash also makes for a great general purpose flash, but is utterly useless with manual lenses, as I can't use the EVF at the same time. Olympus designers/engineers have always been considered to be photographers as well (they seemed to understand what photographers needed/wanted), but what happened in the m4/3s division?

Cheers

Ray
 

deirdre

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Well, you can't use the ring flash with manual lenses AND the EVF, true, but I sometimes use the LCD for manual.
 

OzRay

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The real issue is that you have no option for a remote flash and that is a major shortfall in design. I prefer not to use flash if I can get away with it, but sometimes there's no option. There's actually quite an easy solution to the issue and that's to split the EVF so that the eyepiece sits off to the left of the hotshoe and the connector has another hotshoe where it's currently blank and plugs into the hotshoe as normal.

I would be eminently happy without a swivelling eyepiece, which would make the whole unit quite small(ish)/low profile. If I had the wherewithall to pull the EVF apart and rebuild it, I could do it right now and have the ideal solution. If the EVF wasn't so pricey, I'd have a go regardless and do it slightly differently.

Here's a shot to illustrate what I mean (some slight redesign and it'd work fine):

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Cheers

Ray
 

briandforever

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i once had this thought, but i think this is the price we have to pay for smaller body :)
 

Kosta

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but if the evf were to sit there, then we couldn't use the inbuilt flash.
this would mean everyone would need to use an external flash if you wanted to use the evf.
in some cases i think it is partly trying to fit too much into such a small body, but if the evf was included then it would be no problems for using an external flash at the same time!
 

Rider

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Solution for the flash

Use the internal flash of the EPL-1 to remotely fire an extern manual flash. Put a strong red (IR) filter on the flash to block the visible light.
 

OzRay

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Use the internal flash of the EPL-1 to remotely fire an extern manual flash. Put a strong red (IR) filter on the flash to block the visible light.
As I said, the main time I want to use a flash is with macro and then I'm using a cable release, you can't use a cable release with the E-PL1. So what Olympus didn't provide with the E-P2, they took away from the E-PL1.

Cheers

Ray
 

Rider

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If it's a macro of a stationary object you can use the time-delay exposure release. Or use the LCD. With magnification, focusing is very accurate.
 

OzRay

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If it's a macro of a stationary object you can use the time-delay exposure release. Or use the LCD. With magnification, focusing is very accurate.
Time delay is a painful cludge and not useful when I'm using one of these:

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Cheers

Ray
 

OzRay

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It isn't small but it seems to fit the bill... Redrock MicroEVF
Interesting concept (looks huge), but the outlet is already on the E-P2, all it needs is for the viewfinder to be relocatable. As I said, if it weren't for the cost of the EVF, I'd almost be prepared to get one and pull it apart to make a remote EVF.

Cheers

Ray
 

goldenlight

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Maybe the solution would be for Olympus to provide a custom designed flash bracket/grip with hot shoe that screws into the tripod socket. Electronic sockets in the base plate could then connect to sockets in the bracket to give full auto flash control. It would also make it easier to hold the camera with a large unit like the FL50R attached. A very small trigger flash to remotely fire off camera flashes could also be available to fit the hot shoe on the bracket. The bracket could also incorporate a tripod socket itself so that the whole assembly could still be mounted on a tripod.

A bracket like this would also enable a stereo mike to be mounted when the EVF is being used on the camera.
 

OzRay

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All they really need to do, and I hope this is what's going to be in the E-P3, is to have the EVF built-in; a mini-Leica(ish) type camera, but with EVF. But I still wish there was a way to do this with the E-P2.

And just on a side note, I wonder if a battery grip would give the necessary grunt to make the 4/3s lenses perform faster/better?

Cheers

Ray
 

goldenlight

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All they really need to do, and I hope this is what's going to be in the E-P3, is to have the EVF built-in; a mini-Leica(ish) type camera, but with EVF. But I still wish there was a way to do this with the E-P2.

And just on a side note, I wonder if a battery grip would give the necessary grunt to make the 4/3s lenses perform faster/better?

Cheers

Ray
I think many of us hold that hope for the E-P3, I just hope they accomplish it without the prism type hump of the Panasonic G/GH series. Good point about the battery grip, it would also make using large and heavy lenses more comfortable.
 

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