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Olympus E-M5 Mark II - love and hate at first sight


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Thanks John for adding that.

Last week I was shooting interviews in a laboratory environment. Two of the four walls were white with those tiny black holes in them (there must be a technical name for this that I don't know). I had a 5D MK III, GH4 and the EM5 2 with me. The 5D MK III allowed me to throw the background out of focus and kill the moiré that way but then I had all the limits of shooting a talking head with shallow depth of field. The GH4 4K wider angle ( for cropable cutaways) was entirely determined by having to eliminate the moiré on the background. So my options for the shoot were limited by the way the different cameras handled the moiré in that location. Kind of difficult to explain to my client...

I wonder if using a Pro-Mist filter would have helped?

In my experience diffusion doesn't much help. 

Youre looking to dial back higher frequencies than those that diffusion filters target. 

JB. 

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​Yes I saw that comment from Olympus. They are right and they're wrong. Pana, Sony, Samsung do need to generate 4K content for their TVs. However my question to Olympus is do you see the potential in

The impact of the sensor working at higher temperatures is that you get more noise and other sensor faults like FPN and dead pixels are more likely to show up.  These are the symptoms of sensor heatin

​ Hello. I can't say as it's beyond the bounds of what I can discuss.  But mostly everything on the list here was also on my list that's already gone in.  It's good to keep adding to it though. What I

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Inquisitive .... the Em5 did what it thought best so no clue probably 200" says a lot about your experience level. When I shoot video with my dslr's I know exactly what the iso, shutter and f-stop is at any time because they do have an effect on the image, having no clue can mean you can get diffraction because your iris is almost completely closed resulting into a soft image, or having a way to high iso resulting in noise and again a softer image or not having a natural motion blur because your shutter is way too high. That's what you can get when you let your camera decide and that is what you see in many comparison videos where the viewer gets the wrong idea about a camera.

I feel that if you don't understand basic camera functionality any comparison video you put online will only confuse many people. Hope you won't be too offended by my comments, like I said, I do appreciate the time you put into this, I only find the test the way you intended it to be not of much value when you use auto functionality on both camera's.

 

​This was a quick test the exposure was changing to quickly for me to possibly keep up on 2 cameras at the same time so I set to auto sorry if that offends.  If it makes you happy view it as a test of there metering systems :).   When you put the EM5 in any auto mode it takes over iso as well that being said I sincerely doubt it choose to go higher than 200 and it could not go lower think about it.  I feel I understand basic camera function as to your comments all those negative effects you state would have been a detriment to the EM5 if they were the case. The GH2 was set to 200 as I could and I told you the shutter speed was set to 1/50th for both! 

As to the fact it is not out of camera: I have shown what I got unedited and edited and only the EM5 edited.  It went thru an editor but there both going to have to do that for most of us so get over it.

As to the fact it's on you tube they both did and they are representative of what I saw on screen believe me or don't.

I think the fact that before I said which was which (not intentionally) the major critic on this site picked the EM5 in my edited clip is interesting.  Of course he than much like you insulted my capabilities.  That being said doesn't that at least make you the least bit curious?  If not oh well than continue to insult away I have thick skin.

What should anyones take away be?  There maybe hope yet for the EM5 mk ii quality as we get use to it's idiosyncraises.  I think I have given positives and negatives all along. I was not looking to favor either camera just wanted to know if I could consider it equal enough for my purposes to the GH2.  I think the people who have painted me a Olympus fanboy should reread my posts and honestly it says more about them than me.  I'm sure if we compare this to the GH4 it will be trounced someone should do just that perhaps you!  I haven't even decided if I am keeping the EM5 but from what I have learned I'm going to play with just the EM5 and edit it and see if I feel it is good enough for me weighing what I hate about the camera and what I like about the camera.

 

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Like I said, I appreciate you taking the time to put this online but I can't take it seriously because the camera's where partially set to auto mode. What's even more weird is that you managed to make the gh2 look worse so I don't know what was going on there.

 

 

 

 

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At the end of the day, the video IQ from the EM5II is inferior to similar cameras from companies like Sony and Panasonic.  The thing is, it's not a disaster.  It's got moiré, that's kind of the worst thing to say about it.

And if you want to minimize moire and roll off those higher frequencies in your image, there are very simple ways to do it.  Just read what that Brawley guy advises.  Easy.

Do I think the EM5II should have better IQ in 2015?  Yes.  Is it going to stop me from being productive with it?  No.  I'll do just fine and so will thousands of other owners.

The Canon T3i has moire too.  Didn't stop this guy:  http://www.eoshd.com/comments/topic/8116-short-film-shot-on-canon-t3i/

Ah, perhaps I'm pissing in the wind here.  Arguing about IQ seems to be many a camera hobbyist's dedicated pastime.  Actually using the camera in creative ways?  Maybe not so much.

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Like I said before, I have shot with the BMCC, F55, FS700 and in some instances the Alexa, and I have seen moire galore. I have learnt to avoid it by not shooting contrasty lines (in controlled environments) having art directors avoid sharp lines and patterns on actors and sets and or shoot with soft lenses. To me is no big deal IF its only for couple of seconds. Don't know much about it but I believe its an electronic malady. As far as the little camera, awesome for stills, great for video, but as always, is NOT the camera is the creative eye, you may have a FS700 and shoot crap or a OMD EM5 2 and shoot beautifully like John Brawley did with it. So its all very subjective. Thanks John for the insight.

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The thing is, it's not a disaster.

There is nothing wrong with the camera, your latest video did prove that, I have become used to working around a camera limitation, the only point of argument for me was that when you post a comparison video it's best to do it right in order to avoid confusion because what it says to me know is that it's looks better then a GH2 while many claim it's just the opposite. If it would be better then a GH2 I would know for sure it would match my gh3, there is too much conflicting information right now that makes buying the camera a risk. 

 

perhaps I'm pissing in the wind here.  Arguing about IQ seems to be many a camera hobbyist's dedicated pastime.  Actually using the camera in creative ways?  Maybe not so much.

​I at least try and I don't need a large camera to do so, here's one of my latest films that I do just for the fun of it, shot with a gopro on a mini 3 axis gimbal and a few static shots with a gh4. I"m addicted to stable shots which is why the em5 looks so appealing to me. I probably would not have shot at that location with the EM5 II as I think the fine detail would have been a real challenge for that camera.

 

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There is nothing wrong with the camera, your latest video did prove that, I have become used to working around a camera limitation, the only point of argument for me was that when you post a comparison video it's best to do it right in order to avoid confusion because what it says to me know is that it's looks better then a GH2 while many claim it's just the opposite. If it would be better then a GH2 I would know for sure it would match my gh3, there is too much conflicting information right now that makes buying the camera a risk. 

 

​I at least try and I don't need a large camera to do so, here's one of my latest films that I do just for the fun of it, shot with a gopro and a few static shots with a gh4. I"m addicted to stable shots which is why the em5 looks so appealing to me. I probably would not have shot at that location with the EM5 II as I think the fine detail would have been a real challenge for that camera.

 

​Looks great.

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As to the fact it's on you tube they both did and they are representative of what I saw on screen believe me or don't.

I think the fact that before I said which was which (not intentionally) the major critic on this site picked the EM5 in my edited clip is interesting.  Of course he than much like you insulted my capabilities.  That being said doesn't that at least make you the least bit curious?  If not oh well than continue to insult away I have thick skin.

​As has been mentioned to you before, no one cares what YOU saw on the screen. Even if for a second anyone believed that you could discern an Alexa from a GoPro (which I'm not sure you can), it's not entirely clear that you're not playing some kind of game.

What do you find interesting about my choice? I picked the one you made look better (whether intentionally or not) on YT. It certainly wouldn't be hard to make a toy camera look better than a pro camera if you use a poor choice or settings for the pro camera, poor editing techniques for the pro camera, and, finally, uploading them to YT. Or, better yet, use entirely different cameras and claim they were the cameras you shot. How is anyone to know what you actually did? You refuse to upload the unedited videos, although you clearly aren't lacking for upload bandwidth.

What, do you think you're being funny with this? Is it giving you a good chuckle? Something you should keep in mind is that the GH2 is a well-established camera and no one's going to judge it by the sh1t you've chosen to produce with it. There's plenty of YT content (as well as elsewhere) shot with this camera that people will judge. And when they compare it to the crap you've produced, it's clear you've done something wrong.

The fact that you refuse to actually upload the originals simply is further indication that you're trying to play some sort of game. Well, good luck to you. I'm not going to play along or feed your ego anymore.

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@Bob Goldberg You tube is free which is why I use it.  I'm playing no game I'll upload them but I need a site that will take 3 gigs and cost me nothing and there yours to review.  I keep getting told I must have done something wrong with the GH2?  If you don't mind me asking what do you think I might have done wrong? My settings have been released?  I know that some frown on the auto settings but I locked down the shutter speed to 1/50th and the ISO to 200 on the GH2 and all though I could not lock down the ISO on the EM5 I doubt it would of gone over 200 and if it did that would work against it right?  Perhaps you don't like my choice of the Sanity hack or Smooth but you have never mentioned these as an issue?

You seem to have me all wrong I'm just trying to understand this camera and see if it is maybe better than my first impressions.  I too was ready to return it at first than I saw some promise and now I'm trying to understand this camera.  I won't be comparing it to the GH2 or any other any more.  I'll be editing footage with what I have learned so far I will see what I can coax out of it and if what is right with this camera out weighs what's wrong and luckily I got 20 more days to do just that.  Even if I decide the output is perfect for me there is serious cons about this camera crop factor, bad controls in manual mode, and moire vs pros like stabilization for all lenses, high res mode, and a few others.  In the end it's a personal choice and importance of each pro or con will be different for each of us.

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@Bob Goldberg You tube is free which is why I use it.  I'm playing no game I'll upload them but I need a site that will take 3 gigs and cost me nothing and there yours to review.  I keep getting told I must have done something wrong with the GH2?  If you don't mind me asking what do you think I might have done wrong? My settings have been released?  I know that some frown on the auto settings but I locked down the shutter speed to 1/50th and the ISO to 200 on the GH2 and all though I could not lock down the ISO on the EM5 I doubt it would of gone over 200 and if it did that would work against it right?  Perhaps you don't like my choice of the Sanity hack or Smooth but you have never mentioned these as an issue?

You seem to have me all wrong I'm just trying to understand this camera and see if it is maybe better than my first impressions.  I too was ready to return it at first than I saw some promise and now I'm trying to understand this camera.  I won't be comparing it to the GH2 or any other any more.  I'll be editing footage with what I have learned so far I will see what I can coax out of it and if what is right with this camera out weighs what's wrong and luckily I got 20 more days to do just that.  Even if I decide the output is perfect for me there is serious cons about this camera crop factor, bad controls in manual mode, and moire vs pros like stabilization for all lenses, high res mode, and a few others.  In the end it's a personal choice and importance of each pro or con will be different for each of us.

​I think your biggest mistake is that you shot with too flat of a profile with the GH2 without knowing how to properly handle this. I'm not a pro, but I find Panasonic's standard settings, and even their vibrant settings, to be very good straight OOC.

You applied far more contrast to the E-M5 II video than the GH2, and it clearly shows even when watching it at 480p and 360p. This huge difference in contrast makes the more contrasted video appear sharper.

As I mentioned before, it's the E-M5 II video that is really overcontrasted and oversaturated OOC, not the GH2. You probably kept the E-M5 II settings too high and the GH2 too low, and then you failed to compensate for this in post.

If you're interested in seeing how a difference in contrast can make one camera appear sharper on YT (when the opposite is true), look at comparison videos of the Samsung Galaxy and Sony Xperia (4K). When watching them on YT, it really appears that Samsung put some kind of special sauce in their camera phone. It just looks sharper and more detailed. But when I actually downloaded the originals, the Sony had vastly more fine detail than the Samsung Galaxy. The Sony footage will simply look much better when properly handled. They just simply chose not to overcontrast their footage OOC like Samsung did.

Similarly, look at comparisons between the GoPro Hero Black and Sony action cam (early models) in those stabilization tests. Even in 360p and 480p, the Sony just looks sharper. But every real world resolution test I've seen has shown the GoPro to be sharper. The reason it looks that way on YT is because Sony overcontrasted their footage OOC and GoPro used a much flatter profile. Now, Sony's more recent action cams are much sharper and on par with the GoPro, but the early models weren't and they still looked sharper on YT.

You simply compounded your first mistake of not properly grading the GH2 footage by then uploading footage not graded at all (but using settings that demanded grading). That type of footage is simply going to look terrible when compressed on YT. I'm not saying you did this on purpose, but, not knowing how to grade footage, you should have just used a much punchier setting from the GH2 OOC, not settings designed for grading.

Regarding where to upload, have you tried mediafire.com. From what I've read, they've removed their file size limits on their free accounts. So, it's worth a shot. If not, I can probably give you other suggestions.

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​I think your biggest mistake is that you shot with too flat of a profile with the GH2 without knowing how to properly handle this. I'm not a pro, but I find Panasonic's standard settings, and even their vibrant settings, to be very good straight OOC.

You applied far more contrast to the E-M5 II video than the GH2, and it clearly shows even when watching it at 480p and 360p. This huge difference in contrast makes the more contrasted video appear sharper.

As I mentioned before, it's the E-M5 II video that is really overcontrasted and oversaturated OOC, not the GH2. You probably kept the E-M5 II settings too high and the GH2 too low, and then you failed to compensate for this in post.

Now we have a conversation look at the unedited footage at about 2:30 the tree trunk the GH2 is much more contrasty looked at both the YT and my file there comprable though yes YT added a little more contrast.  Both cameras were set to -2 contrast the Em5 definitely needed more contrast which I gave it in post.  Which is why the EM5 looks nasty in the unedited but far better in the edited contrast boost.  So your right but the EM5 was the one suffering from contrast deprivation:).  As to the settings I posted them the GH2 all -2 but saturation -1 because I did realize it needed more saturation in comparison.  I tend to not like to much saturation and I like the GH2 setup that way.  The EM5 was -2 to contrast and saturation +1 to sharpening I can't lower contrast and saturation any further and probably would not give it a sharpening boost in the future probably leave at -2 out of camera.  I did get a dropbox to send them too from someone who also wants to see them http://dropmefiles.com/WE90E looks like they will be up in a hour and a half.  I do look forward to your comments as I took those waving leaves due to your comments on close up detail not being a fair comparison so I thought good point and did what I did for better or worse :D

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If you want the absolute flattest image you can set contrast to -2 and then in the curves control set shadows +6/highlights -6, but this gets very flat and on the E-M1 skin tones get pretty funky.

With my E-M1, I usually leave contrast at 0 and then adjust curve to shadows +2/highlights -2 which seems to hold onto skin tones well.

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In the curves control set shadows +6/highlights -6, but this gets very flat and on the E-M1 skin tones get pretty funky.

I agree with that. 

With my E-M1, I usually leave contrast at 0 and then adjust curve to shadows +2/highlights -2 which seems to hold onto skin tones well.

​Contrast should act on the whole range whereas curves can be split in to the two halves of the range. A contrast decrease should be equal to increasing the shadows and decreasing the highlights. I haven't done extensive testing but have you noticed any difference? 

What I have seen is that E-M5ii with the better codec allows for a bit flatter profile without messing up color as much. But this requires more testing. 

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I agree with that. 

​Contrast should act on the whole range whereas curves can be split in to the two halves of the range. A contrast decrease should be equal to increasing the shadows and decreasing the highlights. I haven't done extensive testing but have you noticed any difference? 

What I have seen is that E-M5ii with the better codec allows for a bit flatter profile without messing up color as much. But this requires more testing. 

​I haven't tested but I would expect contrast -2 to be the same as shadows +2/highlights -2.  I have just tended to play with the curves more than the standard settings.

With the better codec it would be interesting to see how flat you can go.  Also there was some talk with the GH4 that raising contrast and then lowering highlights (something like contrast +2, shadows 0, highlights -4) with subsequent correction in post worked well with nice highlight roll off and would interesting to see what that looked like on the E-M5ii.

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One of the things I'm considering is if I should go with only my vintage lenses on the EM5II.  As of this version of the firmware, it's not really practical to change exposure while shooting.  As a documentarian that needs to roll long takes, having the ability to adjust without stopping is important.  So, looks an iris ring is the only option right now.

Firmware fix ASAP?  It'll be curious to see how attentive Olympus is regarding updates.

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One of the things I'm considering is if I should go with only my vintage lenses on the EM5II.  As of this version of the firmware, it's not really practical to change exposure while shooting.  As a documentarian that needs to roll long takes, having the ability to adjust without stopping is important.  So, looks an iris ring is the only option right now.

Firmware fix ASAP?  It'll be curious to see how attentive Olympus is regarding updates.

​If you want to adjust both the ISO and the aperture in the same shot then yes, as is it is impractical. But if you want to adjust just one parameter then you can select it in the LCD quick adjust panel before the shot, and then when need to change it you push the OK button and rotate the front dial. So the dial does work after all but you need to press the OK button beforehand.  

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One of the things I'm considering is if I should go with only my vintage lenses on the EM5II.  As of this version of the firmware, it's not really practical to change exposure while shooting.  As a documentarian that needs to roll long takes, having the ability to adjust without stopping is important.  So, looks an iris ring is the only option right now.

Firmware fix ASAP?  It'll be curious to see how attentive Olympus is regarding updates.

​I agree they need to fix it.  That being said you can use the touch screen which totally sucks especially if your found of using viewfinder like me.  That being said you can touch the ok menu button and the same side pop out comes out and when it does the dials will work. It takes a little long and wouldn't be to bad but it will go back to sleep on it's own.

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