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Thread: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

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    Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Well, I tried PENs and Panny Gs and found system limiting to my needs, no fast primes or zoom, no decent bokeh producing lenses, higher prices compared to APS-C lenses in same category (e.g. you can get Canon 100mm macro in nearly half the price of 45mm macro) and limitations on AF Speed.

    This is not rant about the system, I know its good probably excellent for specific uses and offers HUGE size/weight advantage over thier APS-C siblings.

    But the moment I tried making it ONLY system its limitations started showing up more and more. So I am getting a feeling it will take couple years before one can think of m4/3 as main stream (not for pros) photography tools. Till then one will either have to have two systems or Stick with DSLRs if you don't want to compromise on lenses/IQ and ready to compromise on weight/size. and this seems to be not limited to m4/3 but to all mirror-less cameras wether its Pany/Oly or Sony or ricoh.

  2. #2
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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    The lens lineup will obviously take time to develop. Even relatively established DSLR systems like Pentax and don't have as versatile a lens lineup as Canon/Nikon after so many years.

    As for AF limitations, it seems that for single shot mode the AF performance should soon be pretty close to DSLR category if the reports on GH2 AF being twice as fast as GH1 are true. AF tracking is another story though.

    But yes you are right, if one's needs are to have a fairly complete versatile system then m43, NEX etc are not ready to completely play that role right now.

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    Senior Member pellicle's Avatar
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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by sagar View Post
    Well, I tried PENs and Panny Gs and found system limiting to my needs, no fast primes or zoom, no decent bokeh producing lenses, higher prices compared to APS-C lenses in same category (e.g. you can get Canon 100mm macro in nearly half the price of 45mm macro) and limitations on AF Speed.
    I love my G1 for what it is, a good light travel camera with the ability to toss in a few light weight fantastic manual focus telephoto's (such as my FD200 f4). I would probably not have (with me) a 400mm lens if I was using a 5D.

    But every time I look at the prices of say the 14mm or 20mm lenses for it (or adding a GF-1 and those lenses) the price of a 5D and 24mm f2.8 + 50mm f1.8 start to look more tempting.

    No doubt others will leap to the defence of them, but essentially I'm in a similar frame as you. Heck even the 25mm Olympus f2.8 pancake for DSLR's is only US$205

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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by sagar View Post
    Well, I tried PENs and Panny Gs and found system limiting to my needs, no fast primes or zoom, no decent bokeh producing lenses, higher prices compared to APS-C lenses in same category (e.g. you can get Canon 100mm macro in nearly half the price of 45mm macro) and limitations on AF Speed.

    This is not rant about the system, I know its good probably excellent for specific uses and offers HUGE size/weight advantage over thier APS-C siblings.

    But the moment I tried making it ONLY system its limitations started showing up more and more. So I am getting a feeling it will take couple years before one can think of m4/3 as main stream (not for pros) photography tools. Till then one will either have to have two systems or Stick with DSLRs if you don't want to compromise on lenses/IQ and ready to compromise on weight/size. and this seems to be not limited to m4/3 but to all mirror-less cameras wether its Pany/Oly or Sony or ricoh.
    Interesting. I am finding the opposite. If you look at my Flickr stream there are many pictures that would never have been taken if I had to lug my heavier kit. I also don't get the price issue. My GF-1 + 20/1.7 + 45/2.8 is about the price of a 7D body.

    Can you compare the two? Yes, I can't argue the pixel count, high iso and continuous frame superiority of the 7D but take a look at the pictures of my son's band taken in a dim nightclub and I'm not sure what more I want.

    The PanaLeica 45/2.8 fulfils the promise of professional, high quality, fast primes and, yes, it does command a premium, equivalent to the 100L rather than 100USM.

    4/3rds doesn't work for you but it worked just fine for me.

    LouisB

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by sagar View Post
    Well, I tried PENs and Panny Gs and found system limiting to my needs, no fast primes or zoom, no decent bokeh producing lenses,

    That is the total reverse of my experience.

    Fast primes are numerous for the G1. Starting with a 25mm f/1.3 Computar-TV (5 Euros) to many 0.95 lenses.

    G1s produce 'boket" better than the Nikons I was using.

    I do not give a toss about the zooms. I still have not bought the 7-14 zoom (way overpriced, IMO). Unlikely to buy the fisheye (too big and overpriced).
    Hesitant about the 14/2.5 (price has to come down to ~$250 thereabouts).

    AF is slow but I do not need it or I know its limitations well enough to use it appropriately.

    IR rocks with modified cams.

    What I find disturbing is the lack of "system". No small sized versatile flashes, for example. While there are numerous crappy looking 1,2,3, 10 numbered cams being churned out in various colors along with equally crappy zoomz.

    So, it could very well be only G1 and that is that for me. There are too many of the G1s (unused or barely used) still kicking around and work flawlessly.

    This can not be said of the later Gs with their half assed touchscream crap.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by sagar View Post
    Till then one will either have to have two systems or Stick with DSLRs if you don't want to compromise on lenses/IQ and ready to compromise on weight/size. and this seems to be not limited to m4/3 but to all mirror-less cameras wether its Pany/Oly or Sony or ricoh.
    Disagree.

    Don't know what Ricoh makes but Sony has shown some promise that the liveview only cams have a very bright future. The NEX' image quality is excellent. When they start making really useful cameras instead of just sensors, it will be something.

    Personally, despite the shortcomings, I would not a DSLR again. Liveview only/mirrorless cams have way too many advantages over the mirror slap technology.

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    Senior Member biglouis's Avatar
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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Disagree.
    Personally, despite the shortcomings, I would not a DSLR again. Liveview only/mirrorless cams have way too many advantages over the mirror slap technology.
    +1

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    The 20mm is definitely a fast prime, and produces more than just decent bokeh. It's a gem...if I could have only one camera and lens, I think I would choose a G model and a 20 and be done.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    The 20mm looks even better on the NEX.

    I am seriously thinking of getting hold of a bargain 20/1.7 to make it fully manual (aperture and focus) to use on the NEX5

    Sagar, Have you got any more to sell?

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Disagree.

    Personally, despite the shortcomings, I would not a DSLR again. Liveview only/mirrorless cams have way too many advantages over the mirror slap technology.
    Hey Vivek, never heard you express such emotions...
    I agree with you. When I first looked into the G1 with the hi-res electronic viewfinder, I was blown away. heck never seen anything like it. it was practically better than any optical SLR system. I was already a fan of EVF using the digilux 2 and lumix z18 but those resolutions were nothing close to what we have today.

    Mirror slap is bad, the shutter of my oly ep2 is good but even then it has vibration. I discovered that when shooting the moon with a 400mm mirror lens. they can actually make it silent and vibrationless. that would be even better. why use a shutter curtain? if its to protect the sensor when changing lens then just have a shutter to do just that job, not go up and down every shot.

    I have not used a DSLR for over 6 months now, dont seem to need it. The ep2 has replaced all my dslr.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Hi

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    That is the total reverse of my experience.

    Fast primes are numerous for the G1. Starting with a 25mm f/1.3 Computar-TV (5 Euros) to many 0.95 lenses.
    but these would be largely adapted lenses ... which don't seem to suite people weaned on a diet of AF.

    (side note: this trend of things seems to have also robbed the average photographic dabbler of confidence to change lenses, I'm stunned when I hear people around me "warning" others to not change lenses in the field)

    What I find disturbing is the lack of "system". No small sized versatile flashes, for example. While there are numerous crappy looking 1,2,3, 10 numbered cams being churned out in various colors along with equally crappy zoomz.
    which could have been the lenses that the OP has most experience with.

    Personally I like my manual focus adapted lenses, but do wish I could have the focus by wire AF-assist zoom engaged by touching the focus as I can with adapted lenses.

    oh well ... its a small price

    As to flashes, I don't mind using good older Metz "Auto Flashes" ... Sunpak are quite good choices too.

    but I know what you mean.
    So, it could very well be only G1 and that is that for me. There are too many of the G1s (unused or barely used) still kicking around and work flawlessly.

    This can not be said of the later Gs with their half assed touchscream crap.
    +1

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    True, the Panasonic cameras can be limiting for certain types of shooting.

    I shoot varied things personally (landscape, industrial, fetish, and have done a bit of everything for the most part). But for pay, I shoot mostly event photography, and action event photography (dance competitions, martial arts competitions), and some product photography and for that kind of work, I *NEED* certain features that I cannot get from my Panasonic bodies.

    I need to have AFS 2.8 Zooms, Fast 2.0 or 1.4 primes, with a camera body that has clean high ISO images up to a certain point in jpeg. You need a good, easy to use flash system with available flash modifiers (fong lightspheres and similar). Also, for product work, having very clean files with lots of detail/sharpness. True, a lot of that can also come down to glass as well.

    When I do dance competitions, I often shoot at ISO 4,000-5,000 and at f4.0 to f5.6 to get myself a shutter speed between 1/200-1/500th to freeze action and still have some depth of field in case the focus is off or the dancer(s) move diagonally from the plane of focus in between frames.

    Right now, Panasonic and Olympus do not have a body that would let me do the jobs that sometimes pay my bills. My Nikon bodies do that. However, I have stopped carrying a Nikon body with a grip, fast zoom and a few primes along with me everyday.

    I got a GF1 and the 20mm lens last year and it became my carry everywhere camera, replacing my other cameras in the quest for the "perfect" always have on you camera. The older cameras that I still have and use for certain things are the Ricoh GRD1, Sigma DP1, Canon G10.

    I picked up a Japanese GH1 and the 14-140 from a friend who had received one as a gift and wasn't able to use the camera because of the Japanese language menus. I use that camera primarily for video work. For video work on the GF1/GH1, I don't mind using my adapted Nikon glass. It's fun and in a way, can take me back to what it was like when I first started learning how to use a camera, manual focus, manual exposure.

    I even don't mind using MF, etc when doing fun things in a controlled/studio type environment with my Panasonic bodies. But the minute it becomes wildly changing lighting conditions, or very, very low light, I'll grab my D700 and some fast primes/zooms and know that I'll be able to get what I need to get paid.

    I love my panasonic bodies. I like their handling/ergonomics for stills use, and somewhat for video. For video, I find I need to bolt on a few things to make it all handle better.

    I'm happy with the latitude that I can get out of the RAWs. I haven't shot more than a few dozen stills shots with the GH1, I've been using it almost exclusively for video. I do wish that there was cleaner high ISO on the GF1 or the GF3 whenever it comes out (to me, the GF2 is neat but I like having more size and more manual control).

    Say a good 1,600 or so. I'm not expecting miracles and crying out for D3/D700 quality High ISO, I know the realities of why that isn't really possibly due to sensor differences and all of that.

    It does seem that with the Nikon P7000, Nikon is taking some steps in the right direction for usability, and not just shoveling out a P6000 replacement because of the short P&S upgrade cycle. If they can take some of that "usable by actual photographers" pixie dust and sprinkle it on their long rumored mirrorless body, they might be able to come up with a winner.

    I think that's enough of my ramblings for now.


    Chris

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by monza View Post
    The 20mm is definitely a fast prime, and produces more than just decent bokeh. It's a gem...if I could have only one camera and lens, I think I would choose a G model and a 20 and be done.
    I feel the same way. Before arriving at the GH1 and 20/1.7, I went through a whole slew of DSLR-lens combos and didn't find any of them as satisfying.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Amin View Post
    I feel the same way. Before arriving at the GH1 and 20/1.7, I went through a whole slew of DSLR-lens combos and didn't find any of them as satisfying.
    If I had to pare back on photo gear, the 20mm lens would be my go to. The body for me doesn't yet exist. I like the GF1 size, the NEX flip up screen, the NEX pared back number of buttons, the G2 touch screen, and the Digilux 2 viewfinder placement.
    Last edited by Terry; 14th November 2010 at 16:11.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    So, it could very well be only G1 and that is that for me. There are too many of the G1s (unused or barely used) still kicking around and work flawlessly.
    Amazon has a great deal on the black G1 kit right now: $399 including the 14-45mm kit lens. The lens itself sells easily for $200+ on the used market.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by TEBnewyork View Post
    If I had to pare back on photo gear, the 20mm lens would be my go to. The body for me doesn't yet exist. I like the GF1 size, the NEX flip up screen, the NEX pared back number of buttons, the G2 touch screen, and the Digilux 2 viewfinder placement.
    Agree here. When is the interchangeable Digilux 3 or GF3 with in camera EVF coming out?

    That and the the SD1 are the only things I'm waiting for next year.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    I have one of the best EVFs with my EP2. I really love it.

    But it does not mean it replaced my DSLR or could even come close to that. Still like the REAL optical picture from my D700 or E5 or whatever DSLR. Even the smallest, lightest and cheapest entry level DSLRs produce finally better views than the EVF of my EP2.

    Now there is a lot of praise for the EVF in the A33 / A55. I tried the A55 twice and I must say while the EVF is nice, it is in my opinion inferior to the EVF of the EP2 and thus not really a replacement for an OVF so far. I know lot of folks here see that different, but I cannot convince my eyes - even if I try very hard - to love the currently implemented EVFs.

    I think that the EVF in the GH2 could be better, because Panasonic implemented a higher refresh rate paired wit a real optical system in front of the screen. That might bring an EVF to the next level, but still needs to be seen (by myself) if I am happy with that quality.

    Also Olympus was expected to have a mirrorless E5, but guess what they did, they kept with the mirror and OVF - BTW one of the best OVFs on the market. That tells me something - that EVF has currently not reached the quality of real demanding, pro level users.

    Just my 5c.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    The 20mm looks even better on the NEX.

    I am seriously thinking of getting hold of a bargain 20/1.7 to make it fully manual (aperture and focus) to use on the NEX5

    Sagar, Have you got any more to sell?
    if you do this please post about the conversion. i had wanted to do the same thing after selling my m4/3 stuff and getting a nex
    NEX and some manual glass

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by kahren View Post
    if you do this please post about the conversion. i had wanted to do the same thing after selling my m4/3 stuff and getting a nex
    You may want to just wait for the Zeiss wide angle prime to be released.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by kahren View Post
    if you do this please post about the conversion. i had wanted to do the same thing after selling my m4/3 stuff and getting a nex
    I might. Housing it in a focus mount is fairly easy. The aperture control would need some work. It would be a fabulous, light weight, and fast wide prime.

    The rumored Zeiss prime (from the chipped plastic mock up Sony showed) is likely a bulky one and is going to be unwieldy on the already ergonomically disasterous NEX5.

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    Re: Is there no alternatives to DSLRs yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Amin View Post
    Amazon has a great deal on the black G1 kit right now: $399 including the 14-45mm kit lens. The lens itself sells easily for $200+ on the used market.
    They should sell the lens themselves then!

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