Olympus Cameras and Four Thirds System Digital SLRs Forum

Olympus Cameras Forum Discuss Olympus film and digital cameras as well as Panasonic and Leica Four Thirds System digital SLRs - forum moderator is Greg McCary.
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  1. #1
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    I don't know if you guys noticed or not, but on Monday night I was at the official Olympus OM-D E-M1 launch in New York City. They had cameras for us to play with, too. We even got put memory cards in them and share the photos! Even better than that, I brought a review camera back to the office. Olympus was very prepared for this event.

    Here's my Olympus OM-D E-M1 hands-on intro article:

    Hands-On at the Olympus OM-D EM-1 Camera Launch >>

    And here's a picture of the E-M1, taken with an E-M1

    Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch-oly-em1_hands-launch.jpg

    This was taken in truly horrendous light, handheld at ISO 3200.

    Here are a couple more, taken with the the E-M1:

    Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch-p1010021_1200.jpg

    Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch-p1010022_2500.jpg

    I'll be getting to work now doing some more serious testing with the E-M1. As cool as it is when they have a camera for us to play with at a launch, you really can't do much in that kind of environment.

    Please let me know what you want me to test!
    Photo-John

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  2. #2
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    So you have it confirmed it's a new sensor? There is no mention of it being new at the Olympus site.

    " Never mind I found that yes it is"
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  3. #3
    Panarus biarmicus Moderator (Sports) SmartWombat's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Action !
    Motorsport, BiF, long E series lenses on the converter (try a Bigma).
    The second hand price of my E-M5 just went down quite a lot
    PAul

    Scroll down to the Sports Forum and post your sports pictures !

  4. #4
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCary View Post
    So you have it confirmed it's a new sensor? There is no mention of it being new at the Olympus site.

    " Never mind I found that yes it is"
    The question is - what does the new sensor mean for image quality. Obviously, they had to make a new sensor to make phase detect AF possible. But that doesn't mean they've improved the image quality.
    Photo-John

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  5. #5
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Good point John.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  6. #6
    Senior Member armando_m's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    What a beauty

    I like to see low light performance, and I do not mean high ISO , but the combination of the IBIS, ISO , good lens , I'm almost sure it will do great
    how is the AF in low light ? (For a shot I did last weekend, ISO 6400, 1/20 F3.5 , AF did struggle in the D800, had to use the center point and recompose)
    how is the AF for moving subjects, what if light is not great ?
    battery life ?

    Like to see it use remote flash ... did you get an external flash?

    is the EVF usable in a studio ?

    how quickly can you set the exposure, ISO , WB, AF points, AF mode

    Battery life ?

    how does it compare to a DSLR ... say the nikon d7100? regarding bulk, weight, ease of use

    About the RAW file:
    How well does it keep shadow information , highlights ? I know my camera does great on shadows, not so much on highlights
    Does Olympus provide a good Raw converter , is it better than the adobe products ? For critical work I use Capture nx2 to convert to tif and then lightroom, on the D800 CNX2 will do a better job unless I really screwed up the exposure
    how big are the files ? are there options to optimize memory space?

    With time I have learned to adapt to the camera I have, and IQ from the sensor can be great all the way from my Oly EPL1 to the D800, to me it boils down to how user friendly is the camera, AF performance, and how is the PP experience with the RAW file.

  7. #7
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Thanks for the comments and suggestion, guys! I shot an E-M1 intro video yesterday and just added it to the announcement article. So if you want to see it in my hands and hear some more commentary about it, take another look at the article. I'll probably add some more detail photos of the camera to the article later today, too.

    Time to start taking pictures, now!
    Photo-John

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  8. #8
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Thanks for all the suggestions and requests, Armando. That stuff helps me with my review. It keeps me from getting locked into my own little world and specific interests

    I can make a quick comment right now on the image quality. I had my own Canon EOS 70D with the 17-55mm f/2.8 IS zoom with me and I felt like the pictures I took with the E-M1 at the launch were noticeably better. And that's in spite of good optical image stabilization and the Canon's larger sensor. That isn't a scientific test. But the difference was big enough that I took note. The E-M1's built-in IS really is excellent, and the sensor is way better than it has any right to be.
    Photo-John

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  9. #9
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Well John my big question is about the 4/3rd lenses and how well they will focus. I mean that's what this upgrade is all about mostly, right? Providing the bridge between 4/3rd and m4/3rd for the 4/3rd loyalist.
    Is it done with an adapter? Is the adapter included in the price? Does it use the same battery as the E-M5 and does the grip require two? Are two supplied with the camera? If the grip doesn't provide extra power I don't see the point.
    Every Olympus I have ever had was bad about the eyecup popping off. Have they addressed this?
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  10. #10
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCary View Post
    Well John my big question is about the 4/3rd lenses and how well they will focus. I mean that's what this upgrade is all about mostly, right? Providing the bridge between 4/3rd and m4/3rd for the 4/3rd loyalist.
    I don't know if it's accurate to say that Four Thirds lens compatibility is all this upgrade is about, Greg. The auto focus with Micro Four Thirds lenses should be better, I'm hoping for better image quality, the camera is faster, the controls have been improved, the IS has been improved, it's got a much better EVF, and I'm excited about built-in Wi-Fi.

    Rest assured, I will be testing the auto focus with Four Thirds lenses. That's one of the first things I plan to do, once I can actually get outside to play with it a bit. You do need the adapter - the camera still has a Micro Four Thirds mount. And I haven't heard any talk of the adapter being included. There wasn't one in the kit box they gave me.

    Thanks for the added suggestions
    Photo-John

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  11. #11
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCary View Post
    Well John my big question is about the 4/3rd lenses and how well they will focus...
    Just did some quick initial tests with the Four Thirds 12-60mm, the new 12-40mm f/2.8, an E-P3, and the E-M1. The first thing I did was try the 12-60mm (with adapter) on the E-P3. It was very slow with obvious hunting. I didn't try to time it but it probably took at least half a second to focus on a contrasty subject. Next, I put the 12-60mm and adapter on the E-M1. The difference was dramatic. It didn't hunt and focus only took a fraction of a second. I wouldn't describe it as fast. But it wasn't dog-slow and problematic like it was on the E-P3. Finally, as a control, I put the new 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro zoom back on and tried it on the same subject. It was super quick and snappy - just as you'd expect a current auto focus lens on a current camera to be.

    So - in initial testing, a Four Thirds lens appears to work a lot better on the E-M1 than previous Micro Four Thirds cameras. I would call it totally useable - as long as speed isn't an issue. Previously it was really too big of a compromise unless you were absolutely committed to a particular Four Thirds lens. However, the dedicated Micro Four Thirds lenses are still much faster.
    Photo-John

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  12. #12
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    John Sony has the adapter thing figured out. The EA-LA-2 is an amazing device. A mount lenses focus better on an E mount camera than an A mount.
    Could you tell in your night shots has noise been reduced any? My E-M5 seems to peak out at 1600 ISO in shadow areas.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  13. #13
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCary View Post
    John Sony has the adapter thing figured out. The EA-LA-2 is an amazing device. A mount lenses focus better on an E mount camera than an A mount.
    Could you tell in your night shots has noise been reduced any? My E-M5 seems to peak out at 1600 ISO in shadow areas.
    I was really impressed with the LA-EA2 the first time I used it. But I had one to play with for a while with the NEX-7 and 24-70mm Zeiss and I was less impressed. The continuous AF still wasn't up to snuff for me - not compared to my Canon cameras, anyway. It is a cool and smart design though, and I expect the performance will improve.

    Don't expect the Four Thirds lenses to perform as well as a Micro Four Thirds lens on the E-M1 - or as well as the Sony LA-EA2 adapter and A-mount lenses. But they are useable now. They worked before, but just barely. Now, you can use them without suffering.

    I haven't had a chance to evaluate image quality, yet. I'm going to try to shoot studio tests tonight. But I'm leaving for a week-long bike tradeshow tomorrow so I may not actually get to look at them or share them for a while. Hopefully I can get something done before I leave so I can at least share my impressions. I can say I am really enjoying the camera. I shot all day with it today in the mountains, including a bit of very wet mountain biker racing.
    Photo-John

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  14. #14
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Just Got Back From The OM-D E-M1 Launch

    Well I am very interested in the E-M1 as I am getting a little into time lapse. The E-M1 from what I understand has a built intervalometer and the extra rugged design would make for a nice camera for time lapse. The small size can ride the slider much easier than my a99 and grip. If only it had lower noise so time lapse of stars would be clean. 3200 iso and up is nice to have for astronomical type stuff.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

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