Help me with my decision making here.
On the face of it you might think: no contest. But I am thinking very seriously about abandoning my quest to own a D700 and associated lenses and instead settling for a GH2 - or possibly the GF-2 if such a thing exists in the future. My main interest in the D700 is the ability to cover indoor events where I can reasonably use iso1600 to iso3200 and get usable results. Usable in the sense of web display and possibly printing up to A4 or at a pinch 16x12.
Now, I've tried the D700 - it is a lovely piece of kit. Used one for weekend and compared it to my M8. I stuck with the M8 because the quality of the Leica lenses out resolved those of the equivalent Nikkors on the D700. But ergonomically, the D700 was vastly superior - and of course there was no contest above iso640, in favour of the D700.
Still, I've shied away from investing in the D700 because I already own two systems, Leica and Panasonic and third may be going too far. I suppose in the back of my mind would be to dump the Panasonic kit if I go for the D700.
Today, I spent over two hours continuously shooting with my GF-1. Love the autofocus, the ability to see in realtime the impact of EV adjustment, the ability to frame exactly using the EVF, focus confirm and viewfinder info for aperture and speed. Don't get me wrong, I love my M8 and for landscape work I can't fault it. But I also really like working with a mirroless 'DSLR'.
But here is the rub. If I spent two hours of pretty exhausting shooting with a D700, plus the associated lenses, I suspect not only would my arms fall off but my back would break in two as well. Today, I was shooting with one lens on the camera and my other two lenses in my right and left pockets of my fleece. The three lenses I was using are the 20/1.7, the 45/2.8 and the 7-14. The weight was easily manageable.
Shooting mirrorless is also pretty discrete. I was hanging around the same building for nearly two hours, shooting it at all sorts of angles and different lenses (for a Photosynth project) and I think if I had done the same thing with a large DSLR someone would have challenged me.
I suppose what is swaying me towards the GH2 is several things and I just wanted to know if my thinking makes sense:
1. the 20/1.7 and 45/2.8 are excellent optics. Incredibly sharp. The 7-4 is similar but not quite as good. There are some interesting things on the way, e.g. the 100-300 and the Nokton 25/0.95 - so as far as lenses go the format is not dead.
2. I've found that when a capture is sharp from my GF-1 it is very sharp. I cannot see how it could be sharper or better from a D700. Even if sharpness or noise intrudes, up to iso 1250 on the GF-1 I can rescue it using LR3 which seems to give me an extra stop as far as noise control goes.
3. Looking at the samples from the GH2 - iso1600 and iso3200 look very good. Far better than iso1600 on the GF-1. This is where I'd like feedback - are the levels better, or am I fooling myself?
So, instead of spending a ton of cash on a third camera system, I could just get a GH2 and continue to get the benefit of my investment in 4/3rd optics into the future.
Has the mirrorless format really reached a stage where it can compete with higher end DSLRs, or is it wishing thinking on my part?