Well Said, Michael!

Discussion in 'Micro 4/3 News and Rumors' started by Amin Sabet, Mar 5, 2014.

  1. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Michael Reichmann of The Luminous Landscape, had this to say in a recent Fuji X-T1 review:

    I've only heard it put better than that once, and that by was the same person three months earlier in comments made about the Olympus E-M1:

    Kirk Tuck has been thinking along related lines:

    I believe that for most of us, gradations in modern camera sensor image quality (often referred to as "IQ") are an unimportant contribution to system image quality (lens performance and even postprocessing being more important here), and system image quality is a relatively small component of photo quality (system performance and photographer performance being more important here). I enjoy file peeping, ISO marveling, and DxOmark analysis, but it's all a separate hobby for me. Distinct from photography.

    I don't begrudge those who actually want better and better low light sensor noise performance, cleaner shots, pushing the edge, etc. Nothing wrong with that. But I think most of us have arrived at the point where sensor image quality is good enough.

    That said, I'm not 100% on board with Kirk's idea that all of these cameras are fine. Sure, they will all get the job done, but still I think Your Camera Does Matter. Or at least mine does. I have to feel a connection to a camera. It needs to be configurable, responsive, feel good in the hand, easy to hold steady, autofocus well, give me a great view of the world, and look good doing its job. But IQ - for me - is near the bottom of the list.
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  2. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    I totally agree Amin. IQ on modern cameras, u43 or otherwise, is truly excellent - we're living in paradise photographically. You're right too about usability and connection with the camera being what matters. It's this that drove me from Canon FF to Oly u43.
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  3. twalker294

    twalker294 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Aug 18, 2010
    I've been thinking the same for a while as well. We as photographers are living in paradise right now. Who would have ever thought that we would come to a point that image quality amongst interchangeable lens cameras would get to a point that it was so universally fantastic that it truly became a non-issue? When I went from a Canon 10D to a 40D several years ago, the image quality wasn't appreciably better except for high ISO performance, and since then the margins have only gotten narrower. That's why I dumped all of my Canon gear when the EM5 came out. It was the first MFT camera (IMHO,) that really did match the IQ of a DSLR so once I realized that, the decision was a no brainer.
  4. nstelemark

    nstelemark Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 28, 2013
    Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada
    Real Name:
    A lot of the improvements are now convenience. 1/8000 of a second shutter is not necessary but it means I don't need an ND filter, etc.

    Certainly I am very happy with the IQ of the system I am shooting, and I know where the limitation is (as AA noted, the 12 inches behind the camera).
  5. zap

    zap Mu-43 Veteran

    Jul 23, 2012
    very nice articles and thanks for highlighting them here... :smile:
  6. BobbyTan

    BobbyTan Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 26, 2013
    Long Beach, CA
    As happy as I am with the E-M1, I have to admit that I have camera envy towards Sony a7r and Fuji X-T1 owners. What's nice about the Fuji is not only low noise and clean files (better than the OM-D) but they have a great lens line-up and lens road map - and their lenses are very good I understand. And their 56/1.2 lens is significantly cheaper than the PL 42.5/1.2 lens. Sigh!
    • Like Like x 1
  7. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Real Name:
    Ray, not Oz
    It's ironic how a few years change can change people's views. It wasn't so long ago that Michael Reichmann saw no value in 4/3 and was predicting its early demise. He wasn't alone in this either. So a few years down the track and with Olympus, and Panasonic leading innovation in mirrorless, suddenly those views are flipped 180 degrees. I think it will take a while for these views to filter down to the masses, but I think they will and mirrorless will start to see growth at the expense of DSLRs. You will know it's serious when Canon/Nikon introduce something to really complete with the current mirrorless contenders.
  8. RichDesmond

    RichDesmond Mu-43 Veteran

    Nov 18, 2011
    I think MRs issue was with 4/3, not m4/3. And I agree with him on that, the SLR design of 4/3 compromised the most significant advantage the system had over APS-C DSLRs, small size. m4/3 removed that compromise and allowed the system to reach it's full potential.
  9. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    Yep, MR was always hard on 4/3 but a MFT supporter from the start.
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  10. Fmrvette

    Fmrvette This Space For Rent

    May 26, 2012
    Detroit, Michigan
    Real Name:
    O.K. -

    Nobody says anything about this to my wife...



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  11. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Real Name:
    Ray, not Oz
    I think the thing is, MR didn't see the potential until m4/3 hit his desk. Olympus came back into the camera market on the back foot, at a time when sensor technology was in it's early days and very expensive. I think they had a plan from the outset, but various aspects of technology just weren't ready, especially EVFs. Can you imagine the ridicule Olympus would have received had they implemented m4/3 with EVF technology of several years ago in a DSLR form factor? When you read the history behind 4/3 and then m4/3, Olympus really had to learn to walk again, before they could even hope to jog, let alone run.
  12. Ranger Rick

    Ranger Rick Mu-43 Veteran

    Apr 11, 2009
    Tempe, AZ
    Real Name:
    How dare he say that...

    Mob Throwing Rocks.
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  13. cmpatti

    cmpatti Mu-43 Veteran

    May 8, 2011
    Berkeley, CA
    Right. I think those of us with ambitions to print up to about 16x20 hit this point in early- to mid-2012 when the first wave of 16mm mFT cameras came out. That said, I might someday be interested if IQ advances to the point that really small cameras are easily able to make really big high quality prints (I guess what Reichman refers to as "gallery" size).
  14. Amin Sabet

    Amin Sabet Administrator

    Apr 10, 2009
    Boston, MA (USA)
    I think there is very little limit to how big we can print with 16MP cameras. If we're talking landscape, we can stitch panos, etc. For people pictures, documentary, street, etc, does the resolution really matter beyond a certain point? People just stand further back to view them. If I view a wall-size street photo in a gallery, being able to make out the pores on someone's face from a foot away doesn't increase my enjoyment of the photograph.

    Yes there are exceptions, but I think we're talking about edge cases here.
    • Like Like x 3
  15. OzRay

    OzRay Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 29, 2010
    South Gippsland, Australia
    Real Name:
    Ray, not Oz
    You can do that now, as pointed out, only other photographers stick their noses against large prints, because that's what they do. Non-photographers will stand back like they do with paintings, though who knows, maybe painters stick their noses up to a canvas to observe brush strokes. And with tools like Qimage and similar, they can effectively interpolate images to print beautifully well past the normal expected print size.
  16. hkpzee

    hkpzee Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 5, 2011
    Hong Kong
    Real Name:
    Totally agree with MR's comment. This certainly wasn't the case for the previous generation 12MP 4/3 sensors, but with the arrival of the latest generation 16MP sensors, I find 4/3 sensor IQ to be good enough for my use, that I no longer feel the need to upgrade due to a lack of sensor IQ. Camera ergonomics, control, responsiveness, and lens quality are of far greater importance for me.
  17. 50orsohours

    50orsohours Mu-43 All-Pro

    Oct 13, 2013
    Portland Oregon
  18. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    So now let's show those Pentax Q owners some love....:smile:
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  19. HappyFish

    HappyFish Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 8, 2012
    Real Name:
    Ironic I have had M4/3 since the start with the first pen his review helped me think OK nice quality P&S not until the E-M5 did it ever come close on other things again just the way i also looked even though I had 3 M4/3 setups before the M4/3 it was just a nice small tool but fell short big time compared to higher end gear but at the same time beat P&S that really sucked :)

    heck these days phone pics are pretty darn nice :)
  20. Biro

    Biro Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 8, 2011
    Jersey Shore
    Real Name:
    Agreed. In fact, I find myself repeatedly hesitating to buy cameras with resolution higher than 16mp. The benefits of more megapixels beyond that point - at least for me - are decidedly mixed.
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