View Full Version : A week cruising with the EPL5

19th August 2013, 09:19 PM
Me and the wife and our friends went on a Norwegian Fjords cruise last week. Having recently acquired an EPL5 I decided that I wouldnít take my usual E-3 and give the new kid on the block a work out to see how it got on with a selection of lenses. I took the 14-42 kit lens, the 12-60 and 50-200 ZDs, and a couple of OM lens, the 28mm f2.8 and the 50mm f1.8. Of course the non micro 43 lenses had adapters. Here are my impressions of the EPL5 with the various bits of glass:
14-42mm The easiest to use and near instant focusing. Very light weight and reasonably decent IQ given its kit designation. Of course this was the lightest combo.
12-60mm Quite a bulky combo as the adapter is needed. Slow at focusing (a given with the 43 lenses), but could be worse. Handling was so so as using the zoom ring whilst holding the miniscule grip of the EPL5 was nowhere near as easy as with the 14-42mm. Excellent IQ though.
50-200mm (old) A bit of a beast on the EPL5. Used my SunSniper strap on the collar for better balance when walking around. A bit on the heavy side, but lighter than if the E-3 had been fitted. I found using the zoom ring a real pain as there was quite an effort required and the tiny EPL5 grip didnít help. Often very slow to focus and hunted a lot. Many times it didnít focus and I had to switch to MF and consequently I missed quite a few shots. When it did focus, the IQ was superb, as you would expect.
28mm and 50mm Didnít use these very many times but when I did, I enjoyed the experience. They both look good on the EPL5, even with the bulky adapter. Focusing was reasonably easy (I have the VF2) and was fun. IQ on both seems good once you get to f5.6 or so. A reasonable lightweight setup with both. I just love the OM lenses and I am tempted to get some more for the EPL5, maybe a 135mm and 200mm, both of which I have owned in the past. I think both would complement the EPL5 size-wise.
I was really hoping that the two ZD lenses would be more usable than they were but the slow focus (especially with the 50-200) was the killer. Clearly these lenses are not best suited to the tiny EPL5 but then again the forthcoming OMD EM1 should be way better in handling and focus speed. I am loathe to part with these two lenses as they both offer superb IQ but are better on my E3 due to balance. Not over keen on the comboís weight, which is why I bought the EPL5.
The lightweight 14-42 is great on the EPL5 but I would like it a bit wider than 14mm (20mm in old money). Looks like the 12-50 will suit me better.
I really liked using the OM lenses and love their looks, build quality and the IQ ainít bad either. The VF2 is a must with MF as I would have to wear my glasses using the LCD screen.
As for the EPL5 itself, it is a great little camera given suitable glass. There is a notable improvement in detail and high ISO performance compared to my E3. The camera is very customisable and I spent quite a bit of time investigating this. I really like the digital teleconverter on it and used it extensively with the 50-200 to photograph distant oil rigs and ships although the focusing was even more erratic. I must do a comparison some time soon using the 50-200 plus digital teleconverter against the 50-200 plus EC20 although this may take a while due to the focus speed (or lack of). This could determine whether or not I keep the EC20 as to be honest it is not something I use often.
Sorry about the rambling post but I wanted to share some real world experiences with you. Oh, yes the holiday was good and I will post some images when I get around to it.

19th August 2013, 09:36 PM
I have all but given up with AF when using TF lenses. I find, I can work much quicker with MF and Focus Assist.

The CD/AF on the E-PL5 with the 14-35 is very accurate but still slow and the 50mm Macro very slow.

I even spent time measuring the speed of the PD/AF on the E-3 from minimum focus to 0.5m and infinity to 0.5m, so that I will have something to compare with the new OM-D when I get my hands on one. :cool:

20th August 2013, 08:25 AM
Dave, looking forward to seeing the images :) Shame about the slow focus ... I guess you missed a few shots ?

I used to take a lessor camera but lost so many GREAT shots I only take an E-5 everywhere now - heavy lenses and body = get the shots and HAPPY :)

20th August 2013, 11:41 AM
Its always been the slow focus on MFT cameras that stops me getting a second hand 12-60mm and 50-200mm. Hope the pictures you did get made up for those you didn't.

20th August 2013, 12:18 PM
Dave, looking forward to seeing the images :) Shame about the slow focus ... I guess you missed a few shots ?

I used to take a lessor camera but lost so many GREAT shots I only take an E-5 everywhere now - heavy lenses and body = get the shots and HAPPY :)

Although I always seemed to take all my kit, I hated the weight of it. This is why I will probably eventually completely migrate to micro 4/3rds despite the obvious attraction of the OMD EM1, which I guess many owners of 4/3rds glass will be lusting after in the coming months :D

20th August 2013, 01:56 PM
I'll be interested in the Fjord cruise photos, as it's something we keep promising ourselves. Who did you go with?

20th August 2013, 03:55 PM
Princess Cruises from Southampton. Did a similar one last year but took in Iceland as well. This was where my image for the Oly Jessops display was taken.
We have done three Princess Cruises now - top company. You will put on mucho weight (I did!) :eek:

20th August 2013, 05:41 PM
What a coicedence we sail 1st September, Crown Princess, Norwegian Fjords. Our 1st cruise looking forward to it but a going a bit into the unknown.
So you appear to rate Princess Cruises.