• 03-24-2010, 10:52 AM
    Photo-John
    A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    I spent the weekend with the new Olympus E-PL1. I'd been having a tough time committing to it because I've got a couple of pro DSLRs and it's hard not taking those when I'm skiing. But I decided it was about time I spent some more time with the E-PL1 to put it through its paces. Spring made its presence felt in Salt Lake City so we got to mountain bike and ski on the same weekend, making for some good, challenging photo content.

    Olympus E-PL1 Hands-On Preview And Video >>

    Now - on to the photos...
  • 03-24-2010, 10:57 AM
    Photo-John
    5 Attachment(s)
    Saturday - Mountain Biking With The Olympus E-PL1
    One of the best things about the Olympus E-PL1 and a the rest of the Micro Four Thirds cameras, is their minimal size and weight. The E-PL1 is even smaller than the rest. That's part of what motivated me to take it on my second mountain bike ride of the season. I wanted to travel light :)

    I also made it a point to take the EVF with me to see if it improved my action shooting. And it definitely helps. With burst shots the EVF blacks out, making it pretty difficult to keep the subject in the frame. But overall, I found shooting a moving subject was easier with the EVF.
  • 03-24-2010, 11:00 AM
    Photo-John
    Lenses
    I used two lenses for these photos - the Micro Four Thirds 14-42mm kit lens, and the Four Thirds 40-150mm lens with Micro Four Thirds adapter.

    I should add that I didn't hold back on the processing with these. They have all been hit pretty hard with Lightroom and Photoshop. I shot them in JPG mode and I am impressed with how much manipulation they can take. Of course, RAW would be better.
  • 03-24-2010, 11:07 AM
    Photo-John
    4 Attachment(s)
    Sunday - Skiing With The Olympus E-PL1
    Sunday was a beautiful, sunny spring skiing day. We drove up to Snowbasin, near Ogden, for their retro / eighties day. I didn't really get any great eighties dayglo gear photos. But our friend Arne wore a funky zoot suit getup and I got some photos of him skiing in it. The frame rate on the E-PL1 is a bit slow for serious ski photos, where body position is critical. But with careful setup and a little luck, you can still get good ski photos with it. I wouldn't use the E-PL1 for a serious ski photo shoot. But when you want to travel light it can get the job done pretty well. You just have to plan your shots and pre-focus. The continuous focus isn't going to cut it. And once again, using the EVF makes a big difference for keeping your subject in the frame.
  • 03-24-2010, 01:58 PM
    Atomic2
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Those are some HUGE skis!
  • 03-24-2010, 02:23 PM
    Liz
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    John,

    These are all beautiful images, so clean and sharp. I'm impressed especially with the "white" snow. Wow!

    I'm glad you got a chance to use the E-PL1 - and really like what you did here. Looks like a fun time, too! :thumbsup:

    Liz
  • 03-24-2010, 03:39 PM
    Photo-John
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Atomic2
    Those are some HUGE skis!

    Heh heh - yeah they are :D

    They're 223s - and he is short! It was eighties/retro day at Snowbasin so there were all kinds of long skinny skis around. Most of them were just on dislay. But Sven actually skied those suckers! They used to be jump skis for him, though. They weren't his mogul boards :)
  • 03-24-2010, 03:43 PM
    Atomic2
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    I thought my 185s were big... I can still mogul on them though :)
  • 03-24-2010, 04:01 PM
    Photo-John
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    My long skis are 178's. But I think I skied 205s when I was in high school. Skis are wayyyy different now, though.
  • 03-24-2010, 04:03 PM
    Photo-John
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Liz
    These are all beautiful images, so clean and sharp. I'm impressed especially with the "white" snow. Wow!

    Glad you like the photos, Liz. I didn't mention it, but I probably should - I always do a fair amount of post-processing. And I've got some tricks up my sleeve for snow. But that doesn't take away from these. This batch just shows the potential the camera has, even in JPEG mode. I just massaged them a bit to get the most out of them.

    I also uploaded an original resolution version of the snowy peak one. Here's a link to that gallery page: http://gallery.photographyreview.com...0&ppuser=75191
  • 03-24-2010, 04:57 PM
    Liz
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Photo-John
    Glad you like the photos, Liz. I didn't mention it, but I probably should - I always do a fair amount of post-processing. And I've got some tricks up my sleeve for snow. But that doesn't take away from these. This batch just shows the potential the camera has, even in JPEG mode. I just massaged them a bit to get the most out of them.

    I also uploaded an original resolution version of the snowy peak one. Here's a link to that gallery page: http://gallery.photographyreview.com...0&ppuser=75191

    Wow! That's some image.....gorgeous.

    Which photos were shot with the 40-150? Do you have the newer version?

    I purchased that lens for my E-P1 when I first got it. I haven't used it much and thought of selling it. I don't do much post-processing, so that's probably the reason I'm not happy with the results I get. All of these are really fine images so I'm interested to know which were done with the 40-150. And, did you do a lot of pp on the images shot with this lens?

    Liz
  • 03-24-2010, 05:23 PM
    Photo-John
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Liz
    Which photos were shot with the 40-150? Do you have the newer version?

    The middle three photos from Saturday and the second ski photo were all taken with the 40-150mm lens. I have the 40-150mm f/4-5.6 ED. It's not the greatest lens ever made. But it's really small and light and I'm finding that when the light is good I can get good photos with it. The auto focus is the biggest issue with the Micro Four Thirds cameras. I have to hold the camera steady and focus on something with a fair amount of contrast or it ain't happening. This weekend good light light was not a problem :)

    What kind of problems did you have with the lens?
  • 03-24-2010, 06:48 PM
    Liz
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Photo-John
    The middle three photos from Saturday and the second ski photo were all taken with the 40-150mm lens. I have the 40-150mm f/4-5.6 ED. It's not the greatest lens ever made. But it's really small and light and I'm finding that when the light is good I can get good photos with it. The auto focus is the biggest issue with the Micro Four Thirds cameras. I have to hold the camera steady and focus on something with a fair amount of contrast or it ain't happening. This weekend good light light was not a problem :)

    What kind of problems did you have with the lens?

    I'll have to give this lens another chance after seeing these images. Obviously, the lens is slow, but I expected that. If I remember correctly, comparing them with the images I got with the 14-42 kit lens (the only other lens I had at the time), they were just "blah" - kind of flat. I'll have to go back and check them again. Maybe "you get what you expect" and for the cheap price I paid, I probably wasn't expecting much. Did you do much post processing with these images? I'm really amazed how nice they are.

    Thanks for posting them.

    Liz
  • 03-24-2010, 06:59 PM
    Liz
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Photo-John
    The middle three photos from Saturday and the second ski photo were all taken with the 40-150mm lens. I have the 40-150mm f/4-5.6 ED. It's not the greatest lens ever made. But it's really small and light and I'm finding that when the light is good I can get good photos with it. The auto focus is the biggest issue with the Micro Four Thirds cameras. I have to hold the camera steady and focus on something with a fair amount of contrast or it ain't happening. This weekend good light light was not a problem :)

    What kind of problems did you have with the lens?

    YEP - I have the same 40-150mm/f4-5.6 ED.......

    Liz
  • 03-24-2010, 07:30 PM
    Photo-John
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Liz
    If I remember correctly, comparing them with the images I got with the 14-42 kit lens (the only other lens I had at the time), they were just "blah" - kind of flat.

    Maybe you just need to invest a little time in learning some post-processing. A little investment could result in a quick routine that makes a big difference. I admit that I put some time into these. But that's mostly because of the snow. If it was just a matter of punching them up a bit, a quick levels adjustment and some unsharp mask would have done the trick :)
  • 03-25-2010, 06:25 AM
    Liz
    Re: A Weekend With the Olympus E-PL1
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Photo-John
    Maybe you just need to invest a little time in learning some post-processing. A little investment could result in a quick routine that makes a big difference. I admit that I put some time into these. But that's mostly because of the snow. If it was just a matter of punching them up a bit, a quick levels adjustment and some unsharp mask would have done the trick :)

    Thanks John.

    I almost always do some simple post processing. My biggest problem is that I upgraded from PSE3 to 7 - and I'm having a difficult time as it is totally different. I don't do well with reading and applying when it comes to technology.

    The good news is I just purchased a "Teach Yourself Visually" book specifically for the PSE7. It includes photos and simple (but not stupid) explanations. I don't like the "dummy" books, but the Visual books are usually good for me. I learned Office/Word from them.

    I don't yet know how to do levels. I'm sure it's not hard because everyone does it. One thing that is working against me is the fact that working at the computer for any length of time exacerbates my back/neck problems to the point where sometimes I'm in a lot of pain for a few days afterwards. Not to mention the fact that I don't like it. :rolleyes:

    However, I'm encouraged by your photos. Now I'm happier that I ordered (another) 50mm/f2 vs the 45-200. Maybe the 40-150 will work for me afterall.

    Thanks.
    Liz