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What Was Your Deciding Factor to go Mirrorless

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by photoeagle, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. photoeagle

    photoeagle Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 25, 2015
    Brad Harris
    Making the right camera choice is difficult, I'm trying to make that decision to be the right one.

    Curious what were the deciding factors that lead you to your mirrorless journey? Were deciding between MU 4/3 and a DLSR? Are you happy with going mirrorless?
    Do you feel limited by the MU 4/3 in your photography?

    I want to thank everyone for being so gracious in answering my question, it speaks well of this community.
  2. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    Smaller, good lens selection, IBIS for use with adapted lenses.
    • Agree Agree x 3
  3. Rudy

    Rudy Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 24, 2013
    Oakland, CA
    No clunky, clunking mirror...
  4. DWS

    DWS Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Jun 6, 2014
    When I stopped shooting weddings, I was ready to drop the boat anchor DSLR's and attracted (heavy) quality glass once and for all. No regrets.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. Gary5

    Gary5 Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 15, 2014
    Most shots I take are from ground level or waist level, so my most important feature is tilting touch screen.

    ...adding: I tried using live view and right-angle finders on DSLRs - didn't like them as much.
    ...edit 2: Just read a review of Nikon D500. There wasn't a DSLR like that when I bought my E-M1. But D500 is still too big for me to carry everywhere like my E-M1, so I'll add size as a deciding factor.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2016
  6. Hypilein

    Hypilein Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 18, 2015
    Size, selection of relatively cheap high quality lenses, crop factor for more efficient telephoto options, price. Don't feel limited at all by my gear.
  7. AlanU

    AlanU Mu-43 Veteran

    May 2, 2012
    I would probably suggest M43 to many of my friends as long as I teach them about advanced bounced flash theory.

    Virtually all of my M43 photos are natural light. This is where each and every individual has a certain "grade" scale in a camera system. I've appreciated the M43 for portability and with good glass it keeps up with many crop sensor dslr's.

    This is where specific styles can appreciate the size form factor of the M43. If your a demanding person in no flash photography this is where my tolerance to noise becomes a factor.

    I've held back in buying a flash for my m43 gear. I use it for casual natural light shooting. I do feel the limitation when I need to shoot beyond iso 6400+ I just dont like the looks of my m43 raw files when I manipulate them when I shoot high Iso.

    I really like the files from my gh3/e-m5 with the use of good primes and 12-35mm zoom.
  8. thranth

    thranth Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 3, 2015
    Houston, Texas
    The deciding factors? Well mine was partly vanity, I didn't want to be like everyone else with a dslr.
    That and I knew that something small and portable would encourage me use the camera more often.

    So far I've been happy with the shots I've taken and I'm sure I would not have taken as many photos
    as I have if I had to bring a larger camera along everyday. For casual stuff, travel and landscapes it's been wonderful.

    I think MU/43 can be limiting if you're going for shallow dof in portraiture, since it would take the more expensive lenses in the system to approximate the same look as in 35mm format. It's something I've been looking into since I'm taking more portraits these days.
  9. grcolts

    grcolts Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 1, 2010
  10. Generationfourth

    Generationfourth Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 11, 2015
    When I decided to finally switch to digital from film in 2010 I went with m4/3 for a few reasons:

    1. Portability: size/weight was a major concern as I wanted to take it along all my climbing/hiking/backpacking trips.
    2. Form factor: going from full manual rangefinder/slr into DSLR was very confusing. The m4/3 form factor was much more simpler.
    3. This blog post in 2009 from craigmod convinced me.
    4. Cost: I know that a lot of aps-c systems can be cheaper but in general I find that a lot of the lenses (especially the primes) are very good deals.
    Why do I stick with m4/3? Still for portability- the GM5 is a hell of a tiny camera; the lenses are much more smaller than any other system even though other bodies have crept up in size. The main reason though is Panasonic knows how to make a user friendly camera. I have all the buttons and dials I need on the GX8, and their way of integrating the touch screen is innovative.
  11. snaimpally

    snaimpally Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 31, 2012
    Back when I was a teenager, several friends had SLRs. After doing a lot of research, I bought an OM1, which I had for many years, until it was stolen. So I was familiar with Olympus. More recently, I had been using Canon P&S digital cameras and decided I wanted to get back into an interchangeable lens camera. I took a look at the Nikon 3200 and Canon T3i, but I didn't want a "big camera" to lug around. Unfortunately, Canon didn't have mirrorless at the time and I had been reading quite a bit about M43 in various magazines (especially Digital Photo) so I decided to take the plunge when I saw a deal on a Panasonic G3. I joined this forum so that I could learn more about M43. I had been seen many glowing professionals reviews on the EM5 but when I saw some of the handheld pictures people were taking, I picked up a refurb EM5. Once I bought the 75mm, I was sold on the system.

    Last year I picked up the GM1 with 12-32 and 35-100 f4, which I took on vacation - an amazingly compact kit. So for me, its the whole system. I have several different sized bodies and a variety of lenses and can choose what I want, e.g., compact kit for vacation, low light kit for concerts, etc. all while staying in the MFT system. Quite amazing, actually.
  12. Carbonman

    Carbonman Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 10, 2014
    Vancouver BC
    I bought an E-M10 because I saw a wildlife photo that had been shot with an E-M5 and spoke with the photographer; the 'small' sensor produced excellent image detail. DSLRs were out of the question because I'd already experienced 3 decades of hauling around a bulky, heavy film kit. Seeing my exposure changes through the EVF was probably the clincher. I hated trying to figure out what my images would look like eventually by looking through an OVF and the mirrorless systems gave me the capability of immediate evaluation.
  13. janneman

    janneman Mu-43 Veteran

    Dec 6, 2012
    Jan (John) Kusters
    I have been looking at Olympus ever since the E420, but stayed with a Nikon Dslr because the image quality of M43 sensors back then was clearly behind APS sensors. When the M43 system started to grow, I became even more intrested because of the small good primes. And when the E-M5 and the 16 mp sensor arrived, it closed the gap between M43 and APS sensors. For me that was the moment to jump ship.

    After a rather steep learning curve I became very good friends with the E-M5, and so far still am. Once hand held high resolution arrives I will start to look for an upgrade, preferably in an E-M5 III. Although I must admit, I keep looking at the new (almost) announced Pen F, it sure looks like a beauty. Whether it is as practical as the classing slr shape, I don't know yet.
  14. WT21

    WT21 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 19, 2010
    Mine were:

    1) size
    2) live view / shooting from the LCD and not being FORCED to the eye piece (better/different angles)
    3) because you are using an EVF or LCD (with the right camera body) you get to see exposure in real time. Don't need to guess nor chimp (as much)

    A distant 4th reason is ability to easily use legacy lenses (through magnification of view and/or focus peaking), though I honestly didn't know this one until after I got into mirrorless. CDAF is also great, as it's more accurate, and now that it's married with P-DAF on chip, it can be nearly just as fast, without having to micro adjust all your lenses for accuracy.
  15. joma416

    joma416 Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Aug 31, 2014
    Toronto, ON Canada
    Mine was size.

    I had a Nikon D40 and I was pretty happy with the results. I found it too big and didn't take it out very often. I went on a couple of trips and didn't bother taking it with me. When I got back I regretted not having a better camera than my point and shoot for travel.

    My main reason for choosing mu43 over other mirror less systems was price. I wish I had a better reason for you than that. At the time, there was Sony, Fuji and Samsung to consider and they were all very expensive. I replaced my D40 with a clearance priced GF2.
  16. Growltiger

    Growltiger Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 26, 2014
    Size and weight.

    And I am never going back.
    • Agree Agree x 4
  17. kevinparis

    kevinparis Cantankerous Scotsman Subscribing Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Gent, Belgium
    I came to 4/3 (not micro 4/3) from using a Canon 10D... with a E-510, mainly for smaller bodies, better and smaller lenses and the ability to use legacy lenses. I had no agenda with my photography beyond taking pictures of things that caught my eye

    Micro 4/3 appeared at a time when I would have more time to devote to photography, so bought into that system with an E-P1 and then a GH2 and ran with it. Took a side turn into Canon full frame, and enjoyed access to Leica M stuff through my partner, but as I am not at all obsessed like many others with noise, dynamic range, or even that empty quality called 'IQ', I realised that micro 4/3 was more than enough for my needs. So when the OMD cam along I got an E-M5 and most of the primes as they came out... I passed on the 12 as that wide an angle doesn't work for me.

    When the E-M1 came out I got the first one at Samys in LA, and at last could use the 50-200 which I had loved on the E-510. I have since added an e-pl6 as my walk around... at 300 dollars it was a no brainer.

    I don't fret over the minor incremental jumps between camera models... to me the differences are so minor in real life that they aren't worth discussing.

    To me the camera is still better than I am...its not the bit thats stopping me being a better photographer. I also recognise that the camera can't cure fundamental real life issues... Not matter what high ISO you have, if there is little, flat light... you will get dull flat photos. AF tracking or otherwise is still a long way from being a 'point it at anything and it will stay in focus forever no matter what the light or situation'.

    If you are choosing a camera... choose the one that you will feel comfortable/confident in taking the kind of photos you want to take.

    Deciding or understanding what kind of photos you want to take is the difficult decision.

    Yeah I know.. its the old "Its not the camera, its the photographer" argument... but it is still the truth

    As always I refer you to my flickr page in my sig...vast majority of the first 10 or so pages are all micro 4/3


    • Like Like x 1
  18. SkiHound

    SkiHound Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 28, 2012
    Size and weight. I was sort of intrigued by some of the early m43 cameras but the sensor performance really lagged. I was looking at cameras like the 60D, 7D, D7000 but when I really did some soul searching about what I really wanted. I wanted a camera I could take hiking, throw in a backpack without it being a burden, traveling, strolling around town and on the streets. When the E-M5 came out it just seemed to tick almost all my wants better than anything else. Overall, I'm very happy with the system. I'd like to try FF, but I know I'd end up leaving it home or in my trunk while grabbing my m43 gear.
    • Like Like x 1
  19. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    being able to shoot adapted lenses
  20. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    Five or so years ago I chose M43 for size and because its being a published standard told me that there would be a wide variety of lenses and lens prices becoming available. That expectation has been borne out. (I came from a Nikon film world where the Nikon F mount was a defacto standard and a wealth of lenses existed.)

    Limited? Sure. All tools have limitations. But the limitations of M43 are rarely an issue for travel photography, which is most of what I do. The ability to carry a couple of bodies and maybe 5 or 6 lenses in a carry-on that also holds a week of clothes and "stuff" limits me less than I would be limited by the small amount of full-frame equipment that could be carried in the same amount of space.
    • Agree Agree x 1
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