Thinking about a change from m4/3 to compact

Discussion in 'This or That? (MFT only)' started by merengues, Jun 8, 2016.

  1. merengues

    merengues New to Mu-43

    Apr 20, 2010
    I have gone from Pentax DSLRs to Oly E-M10 with a 12-40 Pro lens and I am happy with it; however, the question of size and convenience creeps in again. Am thinking about a Sony rx100M3 or M4 primarily for it size and image quality. Just wondering if any member has gone through a similar exercise? Thanks for any comment.

  2. Turbofrog

    Turbofrog Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 21, 2014
    If you are happy with the limited focal range that a compact can offer you and the inability to use primes for low light, I think you are well-suited to a switch to something like the RX100 or LX100.

    The 12-40 is a superb lens so it will give you sharper, more detailed images overall, but not by a huge amount (if you can get a good copy of the RX100 III / IV with no decentering), and the RX100's faster aperture largely cancels out any low-light advantages from the 4/3 sensor. The other question is if you rely heavily on the IBIS for capturing more static images in low-light without a tripod, which would be another big advantage of the E-M10. Otherwise, dynamic range and other quantitative image quality factors are basically a wash (small advantage to M4/3, not much in it).

    @ijm5012@ijm5012 should be able to give you more insights, as I believe he's had very good experiences with his RX100 IV as a complimentary kit.

    Personally, I would not use an ILC with only 1 lens unless I had very specific intentions with it (i.e. my Pentax K-S2 and 18-135 WR kit, because there are currently no 1" compacts with reliable weathersealing, and definitely none with fully articulated screens). I don't consider lenses slower than f2 to really be suitable for low-light shooting (on 1", M4/3, or APS-C anyway...)
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  3. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    Do it! You should shed weight of the bulkier system if you think you'll have a more enjoyable photographic experience. Samples posted here and elsewhere have shown the RX100 cameras to be very formidable. The raw edits I've seen look excellent for a small camera. From what I've seen the 1" sensor isn't that far off the current M43 sensors.
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  4. Klorenzo

    Klorenzo Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 10, 2014
    I think about this (I have the same camera/lens combo as you). For 90% of the outdoor situations a 1-inch sensor is a perfect camera.
    But often enough I find myself in that 10%, and when it happens the E-M10 is already on the edge. Indoor freezing action is even worse.

    With a 1-inch sensor you have about one-stop of difference from m43 (assuming identical tech, that is not). The lens on the RX100 is fast wide open, but around 28mm it comes very close to 2.8 already (see the comparison here).

    Then you are giving up the possibility of longer lenses (unless you consider the slower TZ100) and wider ones too like a 7-14 or a fisheye. Then ergonomics, that is already on the edge with the E-M10.

    With a smaller lens (P12-32) the E-M10 is going to be much smaller with a similar jump in ISO. Or the E-PL7, GX85, GX5 could be slightly smaller alternatives.

    I've many shots that I like that I got with compact cameras, so it's not about IQ, more about lenses. I moved to m43 from a compact (LX-5) because the 90mm focal length was the real limit. For my needs there is not yet an alternative.
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  5. JensM

    JensM Mu-43 Veteran Subscribing Member

    Mar 6, 2016
    Oslo(ish), Norway
    As screename
    When I went digital, I started with a P&S, Ixus form Konica thingy (gift from the wife), still shot the occasional roll of film, though. Upgraded to a Canon Powershot due to lack of fiddeling posibilities with the PS, finally got an Ixus, swiftly followed by another, got a Dslr, and now finally I have reached camera nirvana with the M43.

    Travelling the byways and highways of Digital Cameras since 2002. :)
  6. mzzyhmd

    mzzyhmd Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 3, 2015
    I'd get the Ricoh GR II. Bigger sensor in a compact camera.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  7. Glenn S

    Glenn S Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 1, 2010
    I went from Canon dslrs to m4/3 and then bought a Sony RX100 mk1. I found myself using it a lot so I replaced it with an RX 100 IV so that I could have a viewfinder for bright days. I was so pleased with the results that I bought a Panasonic FZ1000 and used it on a recent overseas trip instead of my Olympus OM-D EM-1 and a bag of lenses. The results were very pleasing and so I went for the new Sony RX10 III to get extra reach (600mm). I have had to train myself not to pixel peep and be satisfied with the image in front of me but cropping is still possible, providing you don't expect APS-C quality. Now I plan to sell my m4/3 kit and have just one small bag with the two Sonys. A liberating experience.
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  8. ionian

    ionian Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 20, 2016
    Kent, UK
    For most of us, photography is supposed to be fun. Whatever makes it fun for you is all you need to worry about.

    My wife has a Fuji xq1 - it's a 2/3" X trans sensor in a compact body. She can get some beautiful pictures with it - it has limitations in how far you can push the ISO but it's always in her bag and so always available (well, as long as she's remembered to charge the battery of course...). My GX7 is usually with me, but even with a pancake it's not quite pocketable.
  9. sigamy

    sigamy Mu-43 Regular

    Dec 4, 2012
    If you will be using the RX100's entire 24-70mm equiv range often enough, then the RX100 may be the answer.

    If you can pinpoint one or two FL that you'd need, a small M43 body and fast prime is an option. Something like a E-PL7 or GM5 with the Oly 17mm or Lumix 20mm? Then you can throw the Lumix 35-100mm in a bag and not even notice it's there, but it's there if you need it.

    Then if you stay in M43, you need to make the "Pro zoom vs. Fast Primes" debate with yourself.

    Personally, I don't want to live without the convenience of an ILC and the ability to swap lenses if I want/need.
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  10. manju69

    manju69 Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Jul 1, 2011
    Stroud, UK
    The thing you lose with a 1" sensor is the ability to have much shallow depth of field. Sure m43 does not have loads like FF but it's plenty more than a 1" sensor can give. Trust me I have tried! It depends on what you like to shoot too. For me this issue makes any 1" camera a secondary/pocketable camera and not such a creative tool. The Sony's give great IQ for a small and nearly pocketable camera.

    One other factor is ergonomics and handling. Most of the 1" cameras handle like compacts. Which is fine but when I use one, I miss the enjoyment and ease of shooting my m43 gear. And maybe it comes down to that. An enjoyable experience. It's important to have a camera you use and enjoy.

    On a related note. I tried a Fuji x70 recently and really liked the smallness and handling of it but could not live with the fixed wide angle and no viewfinder. Aside from that it was amazing.

    Sent from my iPhone using Mu-43 mobile app
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  11. eteless

    eteless Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 20, 2014
    I use a 1/1.7" compact (XZ-2) and in most lighting it's a very capable camera, it's only in low light where motion needs to be frozen that it falls behind. I have found that the stabilization on compact cameras is often far better than larger devices which makes up a little bit of the difference in performance (probably because the mass of the lens elements or sensor is so low and thus easy to move).

    I looked at the Sony RX100 however I wasn't completely happy with the controls, menu system, and to a lesser extent the lens (for a dedicated lens it didn't do anything special, it's more like a basic kit lens). The XZ-2 is a less capable camera however I prefer it because I have familiarity with the menu and the controls fit my hands.

    TLDR: I would encourage you to try the camera in store before you buy to make sure it suits your hands as it's not something you can easily tell from pictures. I feel fit and feel is far more important to using a camera than it's spec sheet.
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  12. hazwing

    hazwing Mu-43 All-Pro

    Nov 25, 2012
    Sure... If you want something smaller the 1" compacts are a good way to go. I was considering something similar but decided to get a small second body instead. Went with the Panasonic gm5. It's not quite pocketable but with the pancake zoom or fast prime, it's still pretty compact. Fits into a large jacket pocket though. I use it a lot with my 17mm 1.8.
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  13. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    I've tried the RX100 vI and 2 copies of the LX100. For me I've never been able to deal with the power zoom, startup and zooming just bug me. A GM5 and 12-32 make a pretty small package and one I've found I like better.

    Just something to consider.
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  14. AgentMichaelScarn

    AgentMichaelScarn Mu-43 Regular

    May 27, 2016
    I think if compactness is a major consideration, it's best to work backwards from how you'll actually carry it - such as the type of bag/jacket pocket/pants pocket you're willing to work with. In the end, that's the real world determination of how you'll use it.
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  15. merengues

    merengues New to Mu-43

    Apr 20, 2010
    Very good point which I will have to think about extensively.
  16. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    I sometimes think about switching to two compacts. One with a fast lens and one with a big zoom range. But the good ones end up as expensive as a system anyway. For example, if you went Sony RX100 IV and RX10 III, you'd be spending $2500. You could go LX100 and FZ1000 in Panasonic and it would be a lot cheaper, but still $1600 for the combo.
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  17. John M Flores

    John M Flores Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2011
    Somerville, NJ
    The Pentax Q system is tiny, fun, and capable. It's my kit when photography is second priority (to touring, hiking, spending time with family, etc...)
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  18. davidzvi

    davidzvi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    Yes a GX85 body only + second hand 12-35 f/2.8 & 45-175 would probably run you about the same $1600. Not the full 400mm, but close. The 45-175 is a power zoom and does bug me a little, but size and the fact it doesn't extend make up some for that.
  19. AgentMichaelScarn

    AgentMichaelScarn Mu-43 Regular

    May 27, 2016
    Just remember, too much analysis causes paralysis lol. The E-M10 with 12-40 should fit in a small bag, especially if you only bring essentials such as a spare battery and SD card. You might even want a slightly bigger bag to hold non-photo items like a jacket, water bottle, or tablet.
  20. merengues

    merengues New to Mu-43

    Apr 20, 2010
    I thank everyone who replied to my thread and these responses have given me food for thought. There are several alternatives so no need to rush into a decision. Unfortunately my safari days are over so I don’t need long reach anymore. Again, thanks to everyone.

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