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Upgrade PM2 to PL7 or GM1?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by tjdean01, Feb 25, 2015.

  1. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    A month ago I replaced my lost PM2 with another PM2. I decided that the PL7's 3-axis IBIS, ISO 100, and flippy screen wouldn't be worth its extra size and weight. Price was a part of it, but I need to realize that with an item I cherish like a camera, $250 vs $500 is not going to be noticed in the long run. But I recently learned on DPreview some new info about shutter shock and electronic first curtains that makes me realize I might have been better off upgrading.

    IBIS - lets get this out of the way: 2-axis IBIS on the PM2 ruins images when it's on, so I keep it off. 3-axis on the PL7, does not ruin images. So, let's just say the PL7 has a 2-3 STOP low-light advantage over the PM2.

    Electronic First Curtain - The PL7 has this and I think it might eliminate a lot of the shutter shock I'm experiencing with the PM2 with longer lenses. So, with the PL7 I wouldn't have to crank the ISO as much. In fact, this is probably a TWO STOP advantage due to the PM2's shutter shock problems.

    So, is it safe to say that in certain situations at certain speeds, the PL7 is 4-5 stops better than the PM2? If that's the case in practice, I'd be willing to get the thicker camera and extra 100 grams.

    Then there's the GM1, since the PM2 is going to have IBIS off anyway and since the GM1 with its electronic shutter has no shutter shock to speak of, in low-light situations, the GM1 is 2 stops better than the PM2!? The 1/16000 is also a benefit.

    So, I went through this a month ago, but here I go again with new ideas.
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2015
  2. MarkRyan

    MarkRyan Instagram: @MRSallee Subscribing Member

    May 3, 2013
    I own an EPM2, and have used a GM1 a little bit and used an EPL7 extensively.

    GM1 is significantly more compact than either Olympus camera, video capability is strong, and the price is damn good. But for me, where photos and legacy glass are more appealing, I'd pick the EPL7. The IBIS is transforming in a camera like these. I also like tilting screens.

    The price difference is significant, so all options are quite good in their own. But if I didn't already own an EPM2, I would happily pick up an EPL7 body.
  3. tkbslc

    tkbslc Super Moderator

    What about epl5?
  4. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    I own an e-pM2 and an e-pL7.
    The e-pL7 is very nice for its stabilisation and decent controls : the mode dial itself is nice sharp alloy and the wheel around the shutter turns properly giving a reliable control feel.
    This e-pL7 has improved hit-rate with older lenses and snall-aperture lenses, I like it.

    I have no opinion on the GM1 other than it offers me nothing above the e-pM2.
  5. tjdean01

    tjdean01 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 20, 2013
    That one, while a nice camera in its own right, when looked at on the scale of upgrading a PM2, the PL5 is not only as big as the PL7, but it also has the same IBIS and shutter shock problems of the PM2.

    This is good info. The added weight/thickness been an issue at all? PM2 with a 14 or 15 BCL was something fun to carry around on my belt. PL7 will be around 90g more noticeable...and thicker. In fact, the case I used for the PM2 with the 15 BCL will no longer work. However...see below:

    I felt the same. And it's been what, over a year now? I saw the negatives of all-electronic shutter but now I'm starting to see some positives (PL7 is best of both worlds).

    I'm actually considering if it wouldn't be too reckless to buy the a PL7 when I see a sale for $400 and maybe pick up a GM1 when I see one of those for $300. I'd buy both new. On the days I take the PM2 with a small pancake I don't think the GM1 short-comings would hurt me too much. Also, when I take a larger camera bag I usually have a heavier, often adapted lens, so the PL7's weight might not be as noticeable.

    This is good info. I'm thinking the PM2 is going to go bye-bye. A PM3 with electronic first curtain and 3-axis would be so nice I'm not so sure Olympus will make another "mini" PEN. Sad. I'd buy it and forget about the PL7 or GM1. But now I'm actually considering shelling out $700 for both. Plus I'll have a Sony FF. lol
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2015
  6. davidzvi

    davidzvi Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Aug 12, 2012
    Outside Boston MA
    E-PL5 is the same gen as the E-PM2, same 2 axis, so not really an upgrade if IBIS is one of the reasons for the upgrade. I would only look at the E-PL7, E-M10 (maybe E-P5 / E-M5 because of current discounts only).

    Olympus vs Panasonic. Look REAL hard at the interface. I had an E-PM1 than a GX1. The GX1 was very nice upgrade but I was never really happy with the controls / interface. I've owned those and E-P5, E-M1, and now E-M10. The E-M10 will be sticking around a while.
  7. Ulfric M Douglas

    Ulfric M Douglas Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Mar 6, 2010
    If you will be using the LCD to compose the e-pM2's letterbox format drives me mad while the e-pL7's LCD is much nicer,
    however my pocketable camera is neither : it's the heavy old e-p1 with 17mm pancake and OVF.

    I use the e-pM2 & e-pL7 with EVF ...
  8. bumblebee

    bumblebee Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 20, 2014
    Vancouver, BC
    I upgraded from an EPM2 to an EPL7 a few months ago, and despite the fact that the increased weight and thickness is noticeable (at least in my small hands) I'm quite happy that I went for it. I'd recommend picking one up if you're still thinking about it. My sister and I both used the cameras with the same lenses on a recent vacation and the photos I took with the EPL7 always turned out so much better. You could argue that maybe I'm just a better photographer than her (hah!) but I think it was the camera body that made the difference.

    Briefly thought about purchasing a Panasonic when I upgraded but wanted to stick with Olympus for the in-body stabilization and I just thought it would be easier to deal with a familiar (though still flawed) interface.
  9. Darren Bonner

    Darren Bonner Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 1, 2013
    Poole UK
    Is this going to be your main camera or just a secondary smaller carry everywhere camera when you want to carry something smaller?
    If it's going to be your main camera, the E-PL7 gets my vote.
    If it's a secondary body and you're happy with the compromises the GM1 has to make, the GM1 is a fine little camera.
    • Agree Agree x 1
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