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Thread: M8 vs 4/3

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    M8 vs 4/3

    HI There
    this is just a silly little game - something for a Sunday afternoon.

    Here are a couple of 100% crops. One is from an Olympus E3 shot with the 50mm macro, the other from the M8 with the 75 'cron. Both are at f5.6 with the focus on the writing on the canvas bag. The lenses have the same equivalent focal length of course
    Both are at base ISO (100 for E3, 160 for M8)

    So, the puzzle - which was taken with which . . . off you go


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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    My eyes feel the second one is from the M8/75.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    First of all, they both look very good, and I expect that the E-3 is a great camera. I also think that the second photo is the M8, but for 3 technical reasons:

    1) Macro lenses are typically quite contrasty, and the first photo has higher contrast.
    2) The second photo seems to have a bit more dynamic range, and I suspect that this is the M8. This is also tied to 1), of course, but still...
    3) The second shot has less depth of field, which I think is correct for the larger sensor and the longer focal length (the lens doesn't know what camera it is on).
    Carsten - Website

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Hi There - thanks for replying Daniel
    Too easy with respect to DOf

    here is another comparison, this time equalising the exposure a bit more carefully, and using an f8 shot from the 'cron so that the DOF was equivalent:


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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Hmm, I think this is too easy given the first shot. The sequence is the same. The bag has a highlight in the first shot, and in the second one it has a slight reddish tinge, just like in the first shot.

    Unless... is there a time difference in these shots? It seems that the light is moving between shots, so if you did all the E-3 shots first, and then all the M8 shots, that would explain the difference in the colour.
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    First of all, they both look very good, and I expect that the E-3 is a great camera. I also think that the second photo is the M8, but for 3 technical reasons:

    1) Macro lenses are typically quite contrasty, and the first photo has higher contrast.
    2) The second photo seems to have a bit more dynamic range, and I suspect that this is the M8. This is also tied to 1), of course, but still...
    3) The second shot has less depth of field, which I think is correct for the larger sensor and the longer focal length (the lens doesn't know what camera it is on).
    Hi Carsten
    Of course, you're right - interesting to see whether the second comparison is quite as simple.

    As I said, it was only really a game for a Sunday afternoon, but I hope it might just surprise a few people who have 4/3 cameras down as a 'small sensor' option of not much interest.

    To be honest, I was surprised - I think the M8 image is better, but it's a very close call.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    The higher contrast of the Oly is a dead giveaway. I don't think the difference is in lens as much as camera. My guess is the M8 has much better dynamic range. The Oly shots look sharpened as well, with a broad radius - it shows as a halo in some areas. Are the Oly shots in-camera JPEGs? That could also explain the higher contrast since cameras often like to do some auto-levels like adjustment to provide clean blacks and whites when producing JPEGs.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    i did not really pay attention to dof and still concurred with everybody. it is just in both instances the second image looks somewhat cleaner (i don't know if this is a right word to use)

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by irakly View Post
    i did not really pay attention to dof and still concurred with everybody. it is just in both instances the second image looks somewhat cleaner (i don't know if this is a right word to use)
    I felt exactly the same way..specially if you look into the plants

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Hi there
    Thanks everyone for chipping in.
    I think that everyone agrees about the difference, a certain clarity, and definitely improved bokeh.

    On the other hand, the combination of the E3 and 50mm cost less than the leica lens, by some margin. The difference between the two shots is there, but it doesn't exactly leap out at you.

    If I did have a point here it was that many are dismissive of 4/3 as a 'small sensor' camera, having made assumptions on that basis. I think this shows that it's a simplistic view - the second shot shows that the DOF difference relates to approximately 1 stop.

    If, like me, your m8 is your main camera, there are still times when it's good to have an SLR about the place - an E3 and a couple of lenses makes an attractive, robust and flexible outfit, without having to sacrifice very much with respect to image quality, and without breaking the bank (or your shoulder!)

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    I'm amazed at the quality of the image. I had heard so much about the noise issues with the 4/3 I had written them off even though Eli Reed at UT-Austin loves his.

    But this does put it in a different light, at least the E3 implementation of it.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by carstenw View Post
    Hmm, I think this is too easy given the first shot. The sequence is the same. The bag has a highlight in the first shot, and in the second one it has a slight reddish tinge, just like in the first shot.

    Unless... is there a time difference in these shots? It seems that the light is moving between shots, so if you did all the E-3 shots first, and then all the M8 shots, that would explain the difference in the colour.

    Hi Carsten
    yes - too easy - and there was a time difference, but only long enough to swap the cameras on the tripod - maybe 2 minutes. But it's mid afternoon with a very low sun - it moves fast, and, as you can see, it does make a difference.

    The point really is not whether you can tell the difference (you can - another way is the reds, which are characteristically a little pink on the M8 shot), but the fact that it's fairly difficult to say that one is 'better' than the other, despite the obvious advantages that the M8 would appear to have; The E3 is a grand little camera - not to replace an M8 of course, but certainly to do those things where an SLR is a real advantage.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by johnastovall View Post
    I'm amazed at the quality of the image. I had heard so much about the noise issues with the 4/3 I had written them off even though Eli Reed at UT-Austin loves his.

    But this does put it in a different light, at least the E3 implementation of it.
    Hi John
    It's impressive isn't it - I think Olympus have really got it right here - I hope it doesn't get lost in the rush - and in the conventional wisdom about noise.

    Then I hope that Leica bring out a really small 4/3 body with this image quality

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi John
    It's impressive isn't it - I think Olympus have really got it right here - I hope it doesn't get lost in the rush - and in the conventional wisdom about noise.

    Then I hope that Leica bring out a really small 4/3 body with this image quality
    Terrific comparison Jono. I shoot fast primes most of the time and therefore love my M8, but there are many shots that simply call for an SLR . The E3 seems to stand out from the crowd, especially given the practical & high quality zoom lens line-up. My only reservation is the size of the body. The E3 + 12-60 combo seems to be about as big and heavy as a Canon 5D + 24-105IS. In trying both, there's no doubt in my mind that the Olympus combo imparts a much greater sense of quality and durability. But whenever I'm about to take the plunge, the little demons play on the mind and tell me I should buy the 5D given the sensor is some 3-4 times larger than the 4/3rds sensor. I guess we've all been conditioned to believe that bigger must be better, but the more images I see from the E3 the more I like it.

    I would be interested to learn whether you have any experience with the 5D and how it may compare to the E3 from an image quality perspective.

    Thanks,
    Lambert

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by lambert View Post
    Terrific comparison Jono. I shoot fast primes most of the time and therefore love my M8, but there are many shots that simply call for an SLR . The E3 seems to stand out from the crowd, especially given the practical & high quality zoom lens line-up. My only reservation is the size of the body. The E3 + 12-60 combo seems to be about as big and heavy as a Canon 5D + 24-105IS. In trying both, there's no doubt in my mind that the Olympus combo imparts a much greater sense of quality and durability. But whenever I'm about to take the plunge, the little demons play on the mind and tell me I should buy the 5D given the sensor is some 3-4 times larger than the 4/3rds sensor. I guess we've all been conditioned to believe that bigger must be better, but the more images I see from the E3 the more I like it.

    I would be interested to learn whether you have any experience with the 5D and how it may compare to the E3 from an image quality perspective.

    Thanks,
    Lambert
    HI Lambert
    Never had a 5D, sorry - previous slr's include D200, D2x, Kodak 14nx. The kodak produced more definition, the D200 less, and the D2x about the same (I'd say). There are quite a lot of 5D users on the Olympus boards who have converted to the E3 and seem very happy with their decision.
    As for size, there probably isn't a lot in it, the E3 doesn't feel like a big camera, but it certainly feels (and is) a lot more solid than the 5d.
    Currently I have the E3+12-60, 1 M8 body with 4 leica lenses in an standard Billingham Hadley bag - which suits me. If you want to go small, you can always stick on the excellent Olympus 14-42 lens - it's quite slow, but focuses very close and is unfeasably small - and of course you have Image stabilisation with everything.

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    Smile Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    HI Lambert
    Never had a 5D, sorry - previous slr's include D200, D2x, Kodak 14nx. The kodak produced more definition, the D200 less, and the D2x about the same (I'd say). There are quite a lot of 5D users on the Olympus boards who have converted to the E3 and seem very happy with their decision.
    As for size, there probably isn't a lot in it, the E3 doesn't feel like a big camera, but it certainly feels (and is) a lot more solid than the 5d.
    Currently I have the E3+12-60, 1 M8 body with 4 leica lenses in an standard Billingham Hadley bag - which suits me. If you want to go small, you can always stick on the excellent Olympus 14-42 lens - it's quite slow, but focuses very close and is unfeasably small - and of course you have Image stabilisation with everything.
    Hi Jono,
    Thanks for the brief perspective on your various cameras. In looking at your comparo once again, its really sweet to see that the E3 can hold its own against the M8. Cheers, Lambert

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by lambert View Post
    Hi Jono,
    Thanks for the brief perspective on your various cameras. In looking at your comparo once again, its really sweet to see that the E3 can hold its own against the M8. Cheers, Lambert
    I don't know how much post processing work Jono had to do to get the two images to be comparable in terms of color balance, sharpness etc. My experience with the 5D is that you have to do a lot of work to get it to look like M8 files. Not that it can't be done but with the M8 you have a fraction of the PP work to do as compared to the 5D. That was one of the considerations that led me to the R9/DMR originally and ultimately the M8. YMMV I tell you though I could certainly live with the E3 based on these images so for the macro and tele work that is so difficult with DRF bodies the E3 and its lenses may be the ticket

    Woody

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyspedden View Post
    I don't know how much post processing work Jono had to do to get the two images to be comparable in terms of color balance, sharpness etc. My experience with the 5D is that you have to do a lot of work to get it to look like M8 files. Not that it can't be done but with the M8 you have a fraction of the PP work to do as compared to the 5D. That was one of the considerations that led me to the R9/DMR originally and ultimately the M8. YMMV I tell you though I could certainly live with the E3 based on these images so for the macro and tele work that is so difficult with DRF bodies the E3 and its lenses may be the ticket

    Woody
    Is the PP overhead with 5D files still relevant given that Lightroom (and perhaps other RAW tools) allow for presets that will tweak colour to taste fairly rapidly. I must agree with you in relation to the M8 in that it provides great colour straight off the bat. I believe the Olympus E-1, which shared a similar Kodak CCD, was also very good in this regard.

    Lambert

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by woodyspedden View Post
    I don't know how much post processing work Jono had to do to get the two images to be comparable in terms of color balance, sharpness etc. My experience with the 5D is that you have to do a lot of work to get it to look like M8 files. Not that it can't be done but with the M8 you have a fraction of the PP work to do as compared to the 5D. That was one of the considerations that led me to the R9/DMR originally and ultimately the M8. YMMV I tell you though I could certainly live with the E3 based on these images so for the macro and tele work that is so difficult with DRF bodies the E3 and its lenses may be the ticket

    Woody
    Hi Woody
    I'll tell all!

    1. I processed both in ACR 4.3 (seemed fairest)
    2. I used the ACR defaults for both (I normally use aperture)
    3. I boosted the default sharpening for the Olympus from 25 to 50 without changing radius or anything. (as a response to it's AA filter, actually, I suspect I overdid it slightly, 35 might have been better)
    4. I slightly corrected the exposure - reduced M8 by .75 and E3 by -.5

    then I opened the shots in photoshop and took a crop from each - saved it as a jpg and posted.

    I'm really very impressed, as you say, it makes a great substitute for those times when an M8 isn't perfect (macro and telephoto primarily). It's better at high ISO then one could reasonably expect - 1600 is fine, 3200 useable with a bit of work.

    There!

    I promise that's all - really - honest!

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    I went to the store today and played with one for about 45 minutes and also 3 brand new D300 came in the door when I was there , so got a chance to play with the E3 and just held the D300. My surprise is there relatively the same size but I loved the finder of the E3 it was better by far than the Leica 4/3rds. It handled very nice except the 12-60 and 50-200 zooms were very stiff in zooming and the lens comes out when zooming. D300 okay flat panel display is what came to mind. Just the ergonomics i may like the Nikon better but i did like the 1st menu display on the E3 you hit any control button a whole menu comes up but just that function is operable.
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Curious. As an old E-1 owner, I also picked up an E-3 recently and have put some time into the same comparison (my 30% off 75/2.0 APO-ASPH vs the humble Oly ZD50/2.0 macro). Frontlit, they both can take fine pictures, as Jono shows. So I moved on to a tougher comparison, backlit filigree against the highlights. This time of year, bare branches and the last of the leaves against the sky provide the acid test. Here's a pretty impressive performance (100% crop, C1Pro3.7.7 straight development with the "extra shadow" curve to bring up the tree trunks):
    I couldn't hold the shadows without losing the branch tips on the E-3, although I could put up a pretty good fight for the branch tips if I let the foreground go dark. I think the difference is not lens contrast (the 75 'cron is pretty contrasty) but sensor dynamic range. Anyway, I am having a great time with the E-3 shooting sports -- its AF actually works in crummy basketball lighting.

    scott

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by Guy Mancuso View Post
    I went to the store today and played with one for about 45 minutes and also 3 brand new D300 came in the door when I was there , so got a chance to play with the E3 and just held the D300. My surprise is there relatively the same size but I loved the finder of the E3 it was better by far than the Leica 4/3rds. It handled very nice except the 12-60 and 50-200 zooms were very stiff in zooming and the lens comes out when zooming. D300 okay flat panel display is what came to mind. Just the ergonomics i may like the Nikon better but i did like the 1st menu display on the E3 you hit any control button a whole menu comes up but just that function is operable.
    I have tried two or so 12-60 Olympus lenses and they all seemed stubbornly stiff. Perhaps it has something to do with the weather sealing and I would hope they may loosen up over time.

    The D300's ergonomics are bang on the money and the ultra high res LCD is a big winner in my book. But as far as lenses are concerned, Olympus have pulled together a small, but very impressive array of lenses. Since these are typically very high in quality, the resulting imaging quality is also very high. Nowadays, sensors & processing in almost all DSLRs is so high, that the real point of difference seems to be the lenses. And in this department Olympus, like Leica, have an edge over the competition. Rgds, Lambert

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Here's an example of what the E-3 can do with its 50/2.0. (Can anyone tell me how to intersperse text and pictures when uploading crops as opposed to linking to them when they are hosted elsewhere?).

    scott

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by lambert View Post
    I have tried two or so 12-60 Olympus lenses and they all seemed stubbornly stiff. Perhaps it has something to do with the weather sealing and I would hope they may loosen up over time.

    The D300's ergonomics are bang on the money and the ultra high res LCD is a big winner in my book. But as far as lenses are concerned, Olympus have pulled together a small, but very impressive array of lenses. Since these are typically very high in quality, the resulting imaging quality is also very high. Nowadays, sensors & processing in almost all DSLRs is so high, that the real point of difference seems to be the lenses. And in this department Olympus, like Leica, have an edge over the competition. Rgds, Lambert
    Lambert did not think of the weather sealing and excellent point. One other point is price too the 50 -200 is far less expensive than the 70 -200 2.8 . The E3 has it going on there is no question in my mind it felt very good in my hands and the controls were not to bad to figure out. Easy access to change ISO and EV also right there on the deck. I can't remember everything but I did like it.
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    I don't doubt that the E-3 is a good camera, but there is a lot more to a camera's performance than simply the 100% crops. The fact that you need a 25mm lens to get the equivalent angle of view of a 50mm on full-frame 35mm is a big factor. That is a deal breaker for me, perhaps not for others. It is like the difference in depth of field between 35mm and medium format.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    I don't doubt that the E-3 is a good camera, but there is a lot more to a camera's performance than simply the 100% crops. The fact that you need a 25mm lens to get the equivalent angle of view of a 50mm on full-frame 35mm is a big factor. That is a deal breaker for me, perhaps not for others.
    If you want an f/1.4 at 25mm (50mm-eff), PanaLeica sells one. My favorite lens with the E-1 was the ZD 11-22, which was wonderfully sharp wide open at f/2.8, and gave a range of 22-44 mm-eff. Neither of these is exactly a pancake prime, and I wouldn't expect them to beat Leica's range of 28-70 mm-eff lenses under the most demanding conditions, but I bet I can put together an effective "which one is the Leica" comparison for you at 28-35 mm-eff once I retrieve my 11-22, just as Jono Slack did elsewhere at 100 mm-eff.

    scott

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    I don't doubt that the E-3 is a good camera, but there is a lot more to a camera's performance than simply the 100% crops. The fact that you need a 25mm lens to get the equivalent angle of view of a 50mm on full-frame 35mm is a big factor. That is a deal breaker for me, perhaps not for others. It is like the difference in depth of field between 35mm and medium format.
    You're absolutely right Stuart. Primes are not a strong point of the 4/3rds system. A Canon 5D + 50/1.4 costs and weighs less than an E3 + 25/1.4. And the sensor in the 5D is some 4 times larger. But the Olympus zooms are a real class act and this will likely be the deciding factor in my case.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    It's not just that there are not many primes, it is that to get a 50mm field of view, you have to use a 25mm lens that has massively more depth of field. It's even worse if you want the look of a fast 35mm lens...you just can't get it in 4/3rds. For people who want lots of depth of field, this is great, but I am not one of them. I often use selective focus...not to have bokeh for bokeh's sake, but in order to better isolate the main subject and accentuate it. My normal lens is a 35mm, and if you shoot it from f/1.4 to f/2.8, you can get a wide field of view with shallow depth of field. This is something that is unavailable with 4/3rd's, and it is the primary reason why it could never be a replacement for an M8 in my toolkit. Like I said, that's for my photography, not necessarily for anyone else's.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    My normal lens is a 35mm, and if you shoot it from f/1.4 to f/2.8, you can get a wide field of view with shallow depth of field. This is something that is unavailable with 4/3rd's, and it is the primary reason why it could never be a replacement for an M8 in my toolkit. Like I said, that's for my photography, not necessarily for anyone else's.
    Hi Stuart
    Couple of points here,
    First of all, I don't think that ANYONE was suggesting that it would be a replacement for an M8 in their toolkit. But for someone whose M8 is their primary tool, and who needs an SLR sometimes - or even a camera to shoot in really tough conditions.
    As for the shallow depth of field, I agree that there is a shortage of primes (but I use my M8 when I want fast primes). The zooms however are splendid, and the new 14-35 (28-70) at a constant f2 will certainly give you the separation you want. the 11-22 Scott mentions is a lovely lens, and although f2.8-f3.5 it stays at the f2.8 end for most of it's range. Of course, the other thing about all the mid and high range Olympus zooms is that you can shoot them wide open without penalty (either in terms of edge sharpness or vignetting).

    Incidentally - as my test shows, the smaller dof with respect to the M8 is almost exactly 1 stop for the same field of view (that's not massively more DOF), There are many examples of wide angles with short depth of field.

    I think it's interesting that most people seem to view 4/3 as 'half way' between APS-C and small sensor cameras - which is far from the case - vertically the difference in size is really very small.

    If you've tried it and it doesn't work for you - fine. If you haven't - well, it's worth a look. As Woody implies, in terms of colour and lenses it makes a more comfortable bedfellow with the M8 than a 5D, and it's properly weatherproofed and much tougher.

    But I certainly was only suggesting it as a companion for the M8, not a replacement.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by scott kirkpatrick View Post
    If you want an f/1.4 at 25mm (50mm-eff), PanaLeica sells one. My favorite lens with the E-1 was the ZD 11-22, which was wonderfully sharp wide open at f/2.8, and gave a range of 22-44 mm-eff. Neither of these is exactly a pancake prime, and I wouldn't expect them to beat Leica's range of 28-70 mm-eff lenses under the most demanding conditions, but I bet I can put together an effective "which one is the Leica" comparison for you at 28-35 mm-eff once I retrieve my 11-22, just as Jono Slack did elsewhere at 100 mm-eff.

    scott
    Hi Scott
    Thanks for joining in - I think it makes an interesting discussion piece. I still mourn my 11-22 (I have the 7-14 and the 12-60, so buying another would be a real luxury).
    I also like the fact that apart from the reds (where I think the E3 is peerless), the colours really are very similar to the M8 colours - which makes it a grand companion piece.

    I'm glad you're enjoying yours - certainly no replacement, but wandering around with the camera and the 12-60 is a pleasant experience.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    For me it would not be a replacement but a supplement and after playing with it yesterday I wonder how it and the D300 match up. My problem orginally with the Nikon 200 was color and look. It was very flat and skin tones i hated. I even thought of getting the Fuji S5 and still do. I wish we had more users of the Fuji here also because that camera looks very interesting also. Was looking at Dell yesterday and i almost hit the button for the 5D or the fuji S5 . They don't have the Oly E3 or D300 yet. But the prices were pretty good on the 5D and S5. Now the S5 is supposed to have great DR and Color.

    BTW great discussion folks.
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    BTW here is a review on it , reading it now

    http://www.photoreview.com.au/review...lympus-e3.aspx
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    I think the lack of (compact size) wide primes for the 4/3 cameras is a bit of an issue.
    I have looked at the M8 with two primes not so much for my love or otherwise of rangefinders but in the search for a small 2 lens system of a certain image quality (M8, 5d etc) to carry alongside a 54 kit.
    But when the price of the M8 has to be (unfortunately) taken into account the compact 4/3rds Olympus cameras, giving some really good image quality, are a nice option but not only would some 28mm or similar equivalent primes be in order but the fact of the E3 being alot bigger than previous 4/3 cameras seems to be a shame.

    Marc

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Hi Stuart
    Couple of points here,
    First of all, I don't think that ANYONE was suggesting that it would be a replacement for an M8 in their toolkit.
    Isn't that what M8 vs 4/3 implies?

    As for the shallow depth of field, I agree that there is a shortage of primes (but I use my M8 when I want fast primes). The zooms however are splendid, and the new 14-35 (28-70) at a constant f2 will certainly give you the separation you want. <snip>
    Incidentally - as my test shows, the smaller dof with respect to the M8 is almost exactly 1 stop for the same field of view (that's not massively more DOF), There are many examples of wide angles with short depth of field.
    I would be interested to see a shot taken at 2-3 meters with a 25mm lens at f/4, because I work a lot with a 25mm lens on film, and it gives you a TON of depth of field.
    This shot, for example, was shot with the 25/2.8 at around f/4.5




    But I certainly was only suggesting it as a companion for the M8, not a replacement.
    Fair enough. I am not trying to imply that it is not a good camera or anything like that at all. Just that if you like wide angles with small depth of field, it is probably not the greatest choice.

    Here are some shots with a 35mm lens to illustrate what I am talking about...






    By contrast, this is a 25mm lens at f/4...not the greatest photo, I will readily admit.


    Anyway, if I am mistaken about the depth of field characteristics, I would be happy to hear it...or rather see it. Especially when to get a 35mm lens's angle of view, you need a 17.5mm...

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    i think the main legitmate complaint about cropped format cameras is the lack of sufficiently wide enough lenses to give a wide angle field of view.
    I don't buy the argument about increased DOF when you use a 25mm to get the FOV of a 50, for example. what you are doing is selecting a portion of the total 25mm viewing circle. if you made contact prints of the total circle and the 4/3 crop, they would show the same DOF, but if you enlarge the crop to get an 8x10 print, which the DOF tables for a 35mm neg. are based on, you are also enlaging the circles of confusion, so the effective DOF is proportionately reduced

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    By how much though? That is the key. Depth of field is inherent in the focal length of the lens, so while you might get a bit less depth of field, it still would not be close to a 50mm lens. Using an 80mm lens on 6x6, you get a very similar amount of depth of field compared to using one on 35mm, regardless of the difference in negative size.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Richardson View Post
    By how much though? That is the key. Depth of field is inherent in the focal length of the lens, so while you might get a bit less depth of field, it still would not be close to a 50mm lens. Using an 80mm lens on 6x6, you get a very similar amount of depth of field compared to using one on 35mm, regardless of the difference in negative size.
    HI Stuart
    I'll try and find something suitable to post - but as far as 'how much' I no longer have my full frame Kodak, so I con't compare with full frame, however, with the M8, as I say, for an equivalent FOV the difference in DOF is made up for in about 1 stop:

    i.e. the second example in this thread was shot to equate the DOF at 2 metres, the E3 shot at f5.6 and the Leica at F8

    This was shot at 24mm (48) at f3.4 on the 12--60, but I know it isn't really what you want


    this isn't relevant, as it was shot at f3.5 at 180mm - still, it shows that there isn't always an immense depth of field!


    Certainly, the examples you've given above could all easily have been shot on a 4/3 camera (IMHO of course)

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3 -- Bokeh OK?

    Here are two test examples that I took long ago (with the E-1). I agree with Jono that the extra DOF in the 4/3 system is cancelled with about a stop of wider opening. I'll link to the Pbase gallery so that the EXIF data is available. The largest "original" version is probably compressed by now, and not by me.

    Bokeh behind
    and
    in front and in back

    Both shots with the 14-54mm original standard zoom lens.

    scott

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    I had the E500 and the E330 with almost every lens (except the ZD300 and ZD90-250). The promise of 4/3 did not work for me. The bodies were no smaller than the C/N equivalent. However, the lenses were exceptional, notably the 7-14, 50, 150 and the 35-100. 50-200 (distortion at the wides, soft at the tele end) and the 35 (slow) I consider so so. The promise of the 14-35 never did materialize even till today, and if the 14-35 comes out, I will get it with the E3.

    What has happenned to the Panasonic 45mm?

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    The problem is...

    Quote Originally Posted by scott kirkpatrick View Post
    I agree with Jono that the extra DOF in the 4/3 system is cancelled with about a stop of wider opening.

    scott
    The problem is that you don't have a stop extra on 4/3 to get the same DOF you would get on a M8. In fact, the fastest 1.4/25 would never give you the same shallow DOF as the equivalent 1.4/50 on the M8 - and things are getting way worse the wider you get: even if having the same speed would grant you the same DOF (but we agree that we need at least stop faster on 4/3 than that to get equivalent DOF), there isn't a 17.5mm f1.4 or faster, there isn't a 14mm f2, or a 12mm f2.8.

    So this is a no-brainer: if what you are looking for is shallow DOF - as in, fast-lenses-wide-open-shallow or close to that, despite the qualities it might have in other fields, 4/3 is not going to work for you as well as the M8 or as any DSLR (1.5x or 1x) for that matter.
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    Re: The problem is...

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    ...if what you are looking for is shallow DOF - as in, fast-lenses-wide-open-shallow or close to that, despite the qualities it might have in other fields, 4/3 is not going to work for you...
    Agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    ...as well as the M8 or as any DSLR (1.5x or 1x) for that matter.
    Not sure if 4/3 and APS can be put in the same pot here. Of course DoF is wider than full frame with APS but you can still get some blur with a 28/2 for instance, which is much harder with a 18 or even a 21 on a 4/3 camera.

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    Re: The problem is...

    Quote Originally Posted by vieri View Post
    So this is a no-brainer: if what you are looking for is shallow DOF - as in, fast-lenses-wide-open-shallow or close to that, despite the qualities it might have in other fields, 4/3 is not going to work for you as well as the M8 or as any DSLR (1.5x or 1x) for that matter.
    That's not what I'm looking for much of the time, so it hasn't been my problem.

    cheers,

    scott

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm View Post
    i think the main legitmate complaint about cropped format cameras is the lack of sufficiently wide enough lenses to give a wide angle field of view.
    just feel the need to indicate that the zoom range starts with 7-14/4 (14-28 EFL). Wide is one thing 4/3rds does particularly well, but it does so with massive DoF as opposed to limited. OTOH, that amount of DoF can be difficult to achieve with FF without stopping down significantly, then you end up cashing in some iso to hold shutter speed thus losing DR and walking toward more s/n.
    http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/oly-e/lenses.html
    http://www.4-3system.com/modules/lenses/

    Quote Originally Posted by jlm
    I don't buy the argument about increased DOF when you use a 25mm to get the FOV of a 50, for example. what you are doing is selecting a portion of the total 25mm viewing circle. if you made contact prints of the total circle and the 4/3 crop, they would show the same DOF, but if you enlarge the crop to get an 8x10 print, which the DOF tables for a 35mm neg. are based on, you are also enlaging the circles of confusion, so the effective DOF is proportionately reduced
    That would be the story for legacy glass, which Olympus dont have. You need to think about the lenses and system being matched much as FF135 and film lenses are, but without the poor geometry that shows up in some areas of FF performance.

    One of the main benefits is you are able to shoot wide open and yet hold the edges and corners very well. They are not disposed to vignetting, fall-off and generally the optical performance particularly in the pro quality lenses is flawless. You can stop down to get more in the zone for a particular lens as usual 1 or 2 stops from wide open, but not due to optical inhibitions of the system.

    So while diffraction closes in earlier, sharpness doesn't fall of sufficiently fast enough for this to become an issue until you start playing out around F16 or more. That really depends on what sensor iteration (Mp) you are looking at.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Here's my "silly little game" ... just to show that the web is not where, or how, to compare IQ in any way, shape, or form ... I'm selling this stuff so I was taking a snap of it anyway ... LOL !

    The web is just the great democratic equalizer where mediocrity reigns supreme, and midgets slay giants like in a fairy tale ...

    Once upon a time, there was a poor little camera that could, and it took on a big, bad-assed camera in a shoot out far, far away in the magical computer kingdom of Oz ...

    Guess which cameras were used without sneaking a peek at the exif info : -)
    Last edited by fotografz; 13th April 2008 at 15:04.

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    You used a P&S for the top one. The bottom one is a MF back by the DR in the image and detail.
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Okay I win and get that 903 dude
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    i just check and i was dead on.
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Marc:

    I agree with you whloeheartedly that large prints rule the day when it comes to comparing cameras directly. However, I usually still see a difference in the web files, especially at 100% crops or the 50% print repro technique... And I do see a difference in the full images shown above too

    Note FWIW: I used to do screen captures of "print size" view at 240 PPI when I normally printed at 360 PPI to proof print output on the computer. This had the effect of a mild magnification of the final print. But not long ago somebody in another thread somewhere said they preferred just sizing to 50%. Since that was a lot easier than my method and I found I drew essentially the same conclusions with it, I now use it too.

    Cheers,
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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    Hee,hee good eye there Guy ... gotta admit that on the web the two are closer than what you'd expect :-)

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    Re: M8 vs 4/3

    The second shot looks much nicer. There is a difference in the highlights though. Did you move a light between the two shots? The perspective also seems not to be identical.
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