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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    Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    I've been shooting with the Olympus E-5 for a few weeks now but wasn't able to start playing with the RAW files until this weekend. As I thought, Olympus Master hasn't been updated to correctly handle the E-5 RAW files. It opens the files but won't process them correctly. Olympus had me use Olympus Viewer 2 to process the E-5 RAW files and that worked fine. Like the reast of the Olympus software, it's nowhere near as powerful, quick or intuitive as Lightroom. But that's the price you pay when you get a camera this early.

    I'm sharing a few of the images I've processed from the RAW here. This still isn't what I consider a review, but these are solid, final images. I don't have any questions about the JPEG processing or anything else with these since I shot them RAW and past experience gives me faith that the Olympus software RAW processing output quality is as good as Lightroom, even if the interface is a bit clunky.

    I'm only posting small versions here on the forum. But I'm uploading higher resolution to my gallery. Some of them are even full-res so you can pixel peep away. In particular, the images of Jenni at the laptop and the Firehouse sandwich shop are both handheld ISO 1600 images with no noise reduction. Well, nothing more than the software's defaults, anyway. So far I'm really impressed. There is ocassionally a problem with too much red saturation. But the overall image quality is excellent with plenty of highlight and shadow detail. Noise does seem to be much better than previous Olympus bodies. I am pleased to note that ISO 1600 seems entirely useable - possibly even better than my Canon EOS 7D.

    Next up are my controlled studio tests. I've been shooting a ton with this camera over the past week and I'm getting a good feel for it. If you've got questions about it, posts them here. I've got a list and I'll do my best to answer everyone in my full review.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-p1010508.jpg   Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-_1010608.jpg   Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-p1010458.jpg   Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-p1010431.jpg   Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-_a090637.jpg  

    Photo-John

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  2. #2
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    A Couple Mountain Bike Photos

    Of course I've got some mountain bike photos! I took these yesterday evening on Wasatch Crest Trail, up at about 10,000 feet. The aspens are nuts up there right now and between all the photo stops, a slow leak in my tire and the early sunset we almost got caught in the dark. But these sacrifices must be made

    One potential image quality issue I've noticed in a couple of photos, including the big landscape here is there seems to be a tendency towards banding in areas with subtle tonal blends like sky and clouds. It may be something I'm doing in my processing, but I don't think so. That photo was hit pretty hard in post but when I turn off all my adjustment layers I can still see the banding. Hopefully this is something Olympus can address with firmware because it makes me a little nervous. Sky is an important part of many of my outdoor photos and banding is a problem that I'm not aware of isn't good workaround for.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-_a100749.jpg   Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-_a100768.jpg  
    Photo-John

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  3. #3
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    Thanks, P-J - I love my E-3, but I'm certainly curious about the new functions in the E-5. Oh, and as an aside - I've always had occasional posterization in reds with my E-3. I guess it hasn't been completely solved in the E-5?
    Megan

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  4. #4
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    Quote Originally Posted by megan
    Thanks, P-J - I love my E-3, but I'm certainly curious about the new functions in the E-5. Oh, and as an aside - I've always had occasional posterization in reds with my E-3. I guess it hasn't been completely solved in the E-5?
    Which new functions are you interested in, megan?

    The posterization I'm seeing is in the sky. I haven't noticed it in reds. But that may just be because I'm not shooting anything with subtle red tonal blends.
    Photo-John

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  5. #5
    Co-Moderator, Photography as Art forum megan's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    The art filters, specifically. While I know I can get them in the E620 for less money, if I've got the money to upgrade, I'd rather UP-grade. That's at least six months in the future, though.

    (and I think I misinterpreted your comment about the oversaturation in the reds as my posterization issue.)
    Megan

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  6. #6
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    One thing you might want to try is changing the exif in the files to say E-30, and then Lightroom 3 should be able to open them. I did that with some raw E-5 samples and it worked quite well. Lightroom seems to extract a little more detail from the images than Viewer, and has more flexible noise control.

  7. #7
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    That's a good tip! I wouldn't have thought it would be so easy. However, for the time being I am going to stick with the Olympus Viewer software because I know it's handling the files correctly. Until Adobe has an update that supports the E-5 I'm gonna take the conservative route - even if it is a bit of a hassle. At least this way I know the files are being rendered correctly
    Photo-John

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  8. #8
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    I have been reading some great things about the E5. I think it is going to be a better upgrade than everyone first though. The focusing is better, faster in low light, the C-AF is better. A couple of stops better on the noise than the E3. I thik the live view is better. I will probably get one in the spring. I hope. But my E3 has sentamental value. I think I will hang on to it til it quits.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  9. #9
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCary
    But my E3 has sentamental value. I think I will hang on to it til it quits.
    Get a special glass case built for that thing. It's a champ

    As far as the E-5 goes, I agree that it's more than it first appeared to be. The image quality is definitely a big improvement over the E-3 and the other 12-megapixel Olympus cameras as well. I am impressed with what they were able to get out of that sensor.

    I don't really have anything to compare to because I never tried this with another Olympus DSLR, but I shot almost a whole race day with continuous auto focus and the E-5 really surpassed my expectations. In the past I didn't trust the Olympus DSLR AF when I was going to war at a sporting event. My attitude has changed and I'd like to try it again. I'm not so sure my Canon 7D does much better. I'd have to do some more careful testing to really be sure. But for now I can comfortably say that the E-5 auto focus works great.
    Photo-John

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  10. #10
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    I had a E-3 for about a year, was quite happy with the AF but sold it when I fell in love with the E-620 as a light weight second camera and the rumors of the E-5 came closer. Compared to the E-3 the E-5 has gained speed in AF, you can really notice that with a slow lens like the 50mm macro, it is amazing, how fast this lens does focus mounted on the E-5. The gain of 2MP is nothing to really get excited about, however, the thinner AA-filter is working great, the quality of the pictures are even to my old Canon 5D 24x36mm format. Low light high ISO is now usable, the E-3 was limited to ISO 1250, here we can go ISO 3200 with better results.
    And yes, the art filter "dramatic" beats it all.
    Mike

  11. #11
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    Quote Originally Posted by micha56170
    I had a E-3 for about a year, was quite happy with the AF but sold it when I fell in love with the E-620 as a light weight second camera and the rumors of the E-5 came closer. Compared to the E-3 the E-5 has gained speed in AF, you can really notice that with a slow lens like the 50mm macro, it is amazing, how fast this lens does focus mounted on the E-5. The gain of 2MP is nothing to really get excited about, however, the thinner AA-filter is working great, the quality of the pictures are even to my old Canon 5D 24x36mm format. Low light high ISO is now usable, the E-3 was limited to ISO 1250, here we can go ISO 3200 with better results.
    And yes, the art filter "dramatic" beats it all.
    Mike
    Do you find the E5 focuses better in LV than the E3?
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

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  12. #12
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg McCary
    Do you find the E5 focuses better in LV than the E3?
    Hi Greg,
    I can't really tell since Olympus made an upgrade for the AF in LV for the HG lenses. Whether it is the upgrade or the cam you cannot state, but with the said 50mm macro you definately see an improvement. Also my 70-300mm is faster, even I was happy on that with my E-3, see this picture...(1/50s @300mm).
    Mike
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally-e-3.jpg  

  13. #13
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    Looks good, be sure to come back and post a link to your review.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  14. #14
    Buglin Billy
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    I just recently purchased the E-5, and had the E-3 for several years.

    Although I shot these in RAW and jpeg, these are just the jpeg, as I need to learn how to do RAW.

    I shoot mostly wildlife photos thus these. It seems when I am close I get a good focus, but when farther away it doesn't seem so sharp. What am I doing wrong?









    This one was taken using one of the built-in filters.







    And here's another photo with a different built in filter.



    Have a good one. BB

  15. #15
    Senior Shooter Greg McCary's Avatar
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    What lens are you using for your far away shots and what shutter speeds.? Are you using a tripod? There could be several factors that keep your images from being sharper.
    I am like Barney Fife, I have a gun but Andy makes me keep the bullet in my pocket..

    Sony a99/a7R

  16. #16
    Buglin Billy
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    I was using the Zukio 70-300 and all are hand held. Most were taken at about 300 speed. I have purchased a cable release and I do have a Manfrotto tripod and plan to start using those way more than I have in the past.

    Thanks for the help. BB


  17. #17
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Focal Length Rule

    Quote Originally Posted by buglinbilly
    I was using the Zukio 70-300 and all are hand held. Most were taken at about 300 speed. I have purchased a cable release and I do have a Manfrotto tripod and plan to start using those way more than I have in the past.
    Did you shoot those sheep photos at the mouth of Little Cottonwood Canyon? I see people watching for sheep there all the time. Does the 70-300mm give you enough reach or do you need to crop a bunch to tighten up the photos?

    Looking at your photos I think the problem is camera shake. The general rule for eliminating camera shake is to use a shutter speed equal to or higher than your focal length. If you're zoomed in to 300mm, that means you should be shooting faster than 1/250th second. However, since the Olympus cameras have a 2x crop factor your effective focal length is actually 600mm, further magnifying camera shake. So unless you've got really good light a tripod is going to be necessary for sharp photos. I've also found that the image quality of the Zuiko 70-300mm isn't so great wide open at 300mm. I think you need to stop down at least one stop or it looks pretty soft.

    Good to see another Utah photographer posting here!
    Photo-John

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  18. #18
    Buglin Billy
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    Re: Olympus E-5 Photos From RAW - Finally

    John, thanks for the advise. I plan to start using a tripod more as I mentioned.

    There are no sheep in Big or Littlecottonwood Canyons. The animals there are Mountain Goats and lots of people stop and glass them. I've hiked up there a number of times and taken goat photos in that location. But I have to hike up there and shoot them from about 20 to 80 yards.

    Here's a photo of a goat I took up where you are talking about.





    Have a good one. BB

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