Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Andrew Reid

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Review

Recommended Posts

Andrew, nice video short and interesting camera which I had a chance to use for a day. I do like the sound of the shutter. But for still Images? I much prefer images from the Fuji X-Pro1 or D7000, and not by a little, by a mile. E-M5 images, especially with native lenses have a somewhat clinical look, raws are OK, but JPEGs are simply not good with heavy NR. The D7000, which you call outdated, is just a nicer camera to use because of the deeper grip (E-M5 without the add-on grip is an ergonomic nightmare), better DOF control, and cleaner images with better colors. The 14 EV of DR the D7000 is give us is not too bad either.

Honestly I wanted to like the E-M5 and some things I did, but when it came down to it, I prefer images from the most APS-C cameras. In looking on Flickr at the respective camera pools even a D3200, with its 24 mp Sony sensor has better looking images with really nice colors, and great resolution. (The D3200 scored extremely high on DxOMark so it clear that once Nikon puts this same sensor in a better body, D7100?, it's going to be a killer camera).

A search of the E-M5 and D3200 images on Flickr the Nikon colors look dramatically better to me (in particular nicer greens and blues), and similar to the GH2, greens are somewhat week on the E-M5. And as a system camera the Nikon has many more lenses - fast primes, wides and telephotos. In fact the superb 50 1.8 G Nikkor will cost you only $200, and on APS-C will give you better DOF control than an Olympus 45 1.8 on an E-M5. If you like slowish telephoto zooms then I guess you can make m43 work, but that anyone would prefer such a system for photography is a bit puzzling, but I guess everyone has different needs, and size seems to be a big factor for many even though most ground men shouldn't have a hard time handling an enthusiast DSLR like a Pentax K-5 or D7000. I can see having an E-M5 with three primes, but I won't be selling my D800 anytime soon, and for a small DSLR for photography I prefer images from my new K-30 with Limited lenses.

So what is the impression of images from the "outdated" D7000 vs those from the wiz-bang E-M5?

E-M5 Flickr Pool
http://www.flickr.co...om-d_user/pool/

D7000 Flickr Pool
http://www.flickr.co...ith/7628581490/

For video I'll stick to my GH2 and hacked GF3. Thanks Andrew.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs


So what is the impression of images from the "outdated" D7000 vs those from the wiz-bang E-M5?



E-M5 Flickr Pool


http://www.flickr.co...om-d_user/pool/

D7000 Flickr Pool


http://www.flickr.co...ith/7628581490/

For video I'll stick to my GH2 and hacked GF3. Thanks Andrew.




You could add other Pools from more cameras and in the end people will choose the pictures they like the most, no matter which camera was used.
Only same scene, same setup fotos can show a true comparison.
Still, the OM-D fotos in that pool generally seem to be graded more heavily, but since the setting often is more street/snapshot, I guess people prefer a slightly "hipstamatic" look...

Can the D7000 video hold up with Canon APS-C or the GH2?
Never looked much into Nikon I must admit, only the D800 (and now D600), but actually I prefer APS-C for my work...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can the D7000 video hold up with Canon APS-C or the GH2?


Never looked much into Nikon I must admit, only the D800 (and now D600), but actually I prefer APS-C for my work...




It doesn't really do manual control well - and there is moire etc.

At the RAW sensor level it still has a big dynamic range advantage - not as much translate into the video side as one might like.

I haven't found any good videos of the D7000 vs the GH2. Most of them have too many variables changed (focus point, lens, etc.)

This is the closest I could find, but something seems a little off about it - the D7000 should be doing better with the highlights than it does in this example so I am not sure what happened.

http://vimeo.com/22467069


Stops of Dynamic Range at Measured ISO 200 (sensors range from compact to FF). Data taken from pages at http://www.sensorgen.info (which in turn analyzed DXOMark). This for the stills shot in RAW - not the video side.

- Canon Powershot G12 9.8
- Olympus PEN E-P3 9.8
- *Panasonic GX1 10.1*
- Canon S100 10.5
- Canon Powershot G1X 10.5
- Nikon D3100 10.7
- Canon 1100D 10.7
- Canon 60D 10.7
- Nikon J1 10.8
- Canon 50D 10.9 (included because I still use it for stills, not for the hacked video mode)
- *Panasonic GH2 10.9*
- Canon 5DMkIII 10.9
- Canon 550D 11.0
- Canon 5DMkII 11.1
- Canon 7D 11.2
- Canon 1DMkIV 11.4
- *Panasonic GH1 11.4*
- Nikon D3200 11.7
- Nikon D3s 11.7
- *Olympus OM-D_E-M5 11.9/11.7 (measured ISO 200 is pretty much in the middle between the two ISO)*
- Nikon D4 12.5
- Nikon D7000 12.6
- Nikon D800 12.7
- Nikon D600 13.1

Once again, note that several of these cameras have additional dynamic range at other ISOs. The D7000 in particular has 14 stops at measured ISO 83.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With the limited video codec that OM-D users are stuck with, what picture settings would be best to use?

 

I thought shooting flat would be better for post processing but now I´m thinking that the video cannot offer much and shooting flat would be a mistake.

 

Thanks for your help.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With the limited video codec that OM-D users are stuck with, what picture settings would be best to use?

 

I thought shooting flat would be better for post processing but now I´m thinking that the video cannot offer much and shooting flat would be a mistake.

 

Thanks for your help.

I just got an OM-D mainly for a decent stills camera that fits in my pocket but the video is a revelation. The 5-way IBIS is absolutely amazing. You can emulate dolly & slider shots & hand hold shots without fear of shake.

 

It seems that very few people are using the OM-D seriously for video. It has been promoted quite heavily to Pro photographers but they are no more interested in the video on the OM-D than they are with the video on the 5D3 or D800. It is capable of amazing stuff.

 

One really important thing is not to use what looks to be the best video mode i.e. Full HD Fine as this breaks up into macro-blocking far too easily. The mode to use is Full HD Normal which doesn't suffer from mud & macro-blocking. The bit rate for each of these modes appears to be the same at just over 17Mbps so it looks like when in Full HD Fine it 'tries' too hard & falls apart. It may be OK for static scenes but I found that it broke up just with panning over different backgrounds.

 

I am still experimenting with picture styles & want to come up with something that will match my Canon 5D3 with Faithful which gives me the least amount of work necessary in post. The colours out of the OM-D are very natural. The Automatic WB is very very good. Zebras are great.

 

As so few people are using this camera seriously for video there is precious little information available but I would welcome any other OM-D user like Andrew to chip in. This camera has great potential. All it needs is a FW update to give us 24/25p.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would buy one in a heartbeat IF they improved video codec and options. That kind of stabilisation would be a godsend. Since they've not given higher bit rates or different frame rates via firmware update, let's hope it's in the next camera. If it is, the thing is mine ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That'd be good, but the reason I like this kind of stabilisation is you can carry a tiny camera and no rig at all.

That's the best thing about RX100, though again, shit codec.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was just about to post that :) Evidently a video being readied on engadget for the launch next month was leaked. This is the new OM-D E-M1 which is not the replacement for the current OM-D E-M5 but will be in addition to. It looks like a chunkier more traditional DSLR-like camera with extra control dials. Unfortunately the video has been taken down but there is some interesting stuff in the comments from those who did see it. They mention 60p video so it seems likely that 24p will be included but hopefully it will be a world model with 25p/50p like the Canon DSLRs not separate NTSC & PAL models like the Panasonic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The video that appeared then disappeared from gadget is now on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXgS95cgUwQ

 

I don't think it looks that bad. The current OM-D really needs the add-on grip to make it more comfortable to hold. That's the right hand grip not the battery grip underneath. That grip looks to now be extremely sculpted on the new OM-D but could well be for ergonomic reasons.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It doesn't look finished does it? There's a gap between the handle and body! I bet it's a prototype....

 

Yeah the top of the grip doesn't line-up.

 

Anything, damn thing will be useless without 24p and a better codec. I hope they have seen sense and sorted that out along with the moire and aliasing, then it will be a great tool for handheld stuff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One really important thing is not to use what looks to be the best video mode i.e. Full HD Fine as this breaks up into macro-blocking far too easily. The mode to use is Full HD Normal which doesn't suffer from mud & macro-blocking. The bit rate for each of these modes appears to be the same at just over 17Mbps so it looks like when in Full HD Fine it 'tries' too hard & falls apart. It may be OK for static scenes but I found that it broke up just with panning over different backgrounds

 

I need to revisit this & test it some more as despite using Full HD Normal I noticed smearing & macro-blocking in a test clip that I just recorded walking around the garden with lots of plants. Just as with the GH1/2 it's the trees & leaves that break the CODEC.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 or 28mbps should be a thing of the past.

If this has a decent bitrate and 24/25p it'll be in serious consideration as the first four thirds camera I've ever had. If not, despite the stabilisation, it's a no go for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

24 or 28mbps should be a thing of the past.

If this has a decent bitrate and 24/25p it'll be in serious consideration as the first four thirds camera I've ever had. If not, despite the stabilisation, it's a no go for me.

This seems to be the opinion of many, including me! I feel like Olympus is sitting on a gold mine here. 

 

I hope the final product looks a little closer to the original e-m5. This is a bit ugly :/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Probably they will refine a little bit the details (the rubber (?) around the camera looks rough, just like happened with the pre-production GH3 - just look at the pre-production pics of the GH3), but looks like that the shape (controls, etc) is almost final.

 

I think that the E-M5 is a beautiful camera, but this one is almost hideous - the grip looks like a tumor that had grown from an E-M5. :) Ergonomically, I guess that the camera will be very good, but I think that, if the intention was to make a Pro camera, to use the 4/3 lenses and it users, would be better to go the "DSLR" route instead the retro look.

 

The camera probably will be awesome, at least for photos (I don't have many hopes in the video section, Olympus and Fuji don't give a damn to video), but the looks could hamper somewhat it success.

 

Looks like that Olympus is a little lost in what to do - the E-P5 was launched overpriced, and the GX7 lauch just worsened the situation even more. And they start licensing their most valuable asset (the 5-axis IBIS) to (probably) make money; Casio launched a point&shoot with it, and probably the new NEXs will bring it to - and killing a possible video market for Olympus.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...