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Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II The second Micro Four Thirds camera that offers phase detect focusing so you can use Four Thirds DSLR lenses normally as well a Micro Four Thirds lenses.

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Rocknroll59 Rocknroll59 is offline
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EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

Ok so after trawling through many of the comments and observations on here regarding the new Mk2 EM1 is it worth the change from a Mk1??

Whilst I am happy with the Mk1, I am aware that things move on, and so it appears the focus seems to be much improved is it enough to make the change. With the deals around at the moment for the Mk2 it may be a good time, but at 1300 (best online price around that figure) it would only make sense if the improvements are justified.

It will probably create a few opinions but that is what is best about this forum honest appraisal and debate.

Peter
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

Justify a new camera? All depends on your wants and needs photo wise.

The mk2 is definitely a better camera for stabilisation and continuous focus.

If those are important to you then its worth the punt.

The mk2 has many bells and whistles but am unsure whether they were on the mk1, as I am still on a learning curve. Those bells and whistles are only if at all used occasionally. Just depends on what you want and need as said. A 20m pixel sensor is slightly better, but not a deal breaker.

Personally, I do BIF and wildlife mainly, and thus reckon I can justify the better camera...............hic..
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

I upgraded in about March this year and overall I'm very happy with the upgrade. I don't do a lot of photography involving things that move - whether that be birds, sports, planes or whatever - but I still think the mkii is a good upgrade:

- Image quality is slightly improved. It's not huge, but there is more DR (esp highlight recovery), better tonality and of course slightly higher resolution. ISO 64 is very nice and delivers files that will take a lot of PP (which I do).

- Long exposure noise is SIGNIFICANTLY better. As someone who does a lot of LE landscape shooting, this is important for me.

- Battery life is a big improvement.

- IBIS is better - in conjunction with a lens with IS (e.g. 12-100) it delivers unreal amounts of stabilisation.

- Electronic shutter is a big step up in terms of readout speed - I now basically use the camera on e-shutter all the time.

- Overall speed is improved. It's a very snappy camera now. With a high-speed UHS2 card, you can basically take raw images at high repeat rates without ever filling the buffer. Low repeat on e-shutter at 10fps gives full AF and almost no viewfinder blackout - it's excellent for sports, BIF etc

- AF is of course better. It certainly works in very low lighting as well as its improved ability to track moving subjects. It seems very good with older 4/3 lenses too if you have any of them.

- Touch-screen AF positioning - I love this.

- There is a decent list of minor features that are worth having - lens info settings for legacy lenses, focus limiter, pre-set focus distance, C1-C3 on mode dial, pro-capture, ...

Overall, it's without doubt the best camera I've owned from a features and handling point of view.

Apparently it's also good at video, but I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times I've even played with that feature.

My only negative is the fully swivelling screen - I'd much prefer a tilt screen like on the original E-M1.

At 1300 I think it's good value too - 2k is really over the top.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocknroll59 View Post
Ok so after trawling through many of the comments and observations on here regarding the new Mk2 EM1 is it worth the change from a Mk1??

Whilst I am happy with the Mk1, I am aware that things move on, and so it appears the focus seems to be much improved is it enough to make the change. With the deals around at the moment for the Mk2 it may be a good time, but at 1300 (best online price around that figure) it would only make sense if the improvements are justified.

It will probably create a few opinions but that is what is best about this forum honest appraisal and debate.

Peter
The Mk1 has a 16MP sensor and the MK2 a 20MP, right(?), I'd want to know if there's an improved dynamic range. The photosites have to be smaller if there's 20/16 rammed into the same area. Smaller photosites generally mean less photon capacity between full and empty. I'm interested in the answer to this.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Ricoh View Post
The Mk1 has a 16MP sensor and the MK2 a 20MP, right(?), I'd want to know if there's an improved dynamic range. The photosites have to be smaller if there's 20/16 rammed into the same area. Smaller photosites generally mean less photon capacity between full and empty. I'm interested in the answer to this.
DR is improved in the mark II Steve. Highlight recovery is a lot better and noise in shadows is much the same, or maybe only a very tiny bit worse. I've observed this improved DR myself and it's been measured by many testers. Look at DxO or Bill Claff's site:

http://www.photonstophotos.net/Charts/PDR.htm
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Ricoh View Post
The Mk1 has a 16MP sensor and the MK2 a 20MP, right(?), I'd want to know if there's an improved dynamic range. The photosites have to be smaller if there's 20/16 rammed into the same area. Smaller photosites generally mean less photon capacity between full and empty. I'm interested in the answer to this.
DxO have rated the DR of the mk1 at 12.7 and the mk2 at 12.8 measured with the 17mm f/1.8
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Graham_of_Rainham View Post
DxO have rated the DR of the mk1 at 12.7 and the mk2 at 12.8 measured with the 17mm f/1.8
According to Bill Claff's site, the improvement is nearer 1 stop:

http://www.photonstophotos.net/Chart...M1%20Mark%20II

I think that's probably an over estimate, but in my experience, it's certainly better than the 0.1 stop the DxO figures would suggest.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

I agree pretty much with Paul, although I use it for very different things - subjects that move around in bad light, mostly.

1. I think there is a general improvement in image quality, but the Mk I was pretty good anyway so any improvement is incremental. Still nice to have of course, and a few more pixels is useful if you need to crop.

2. I haven't tried to measure dynamic range in any scientific way. I do a lot of shooting at high ISO (musicians in badly-lit venues) and subjectively the Mk II's files seem to take more adjustment before falling apart and I can probably run at higher ISO.

3. Unlike Paul, I prefer the swivel screen. At least in part because I can turn it to face the body and in effect switch it off so I don't disturb people with it when photographing in dark concert venues. With the screen facing outwards you can't quite turn the blasted thing off (I've got a thread about this somewhere and an update request outstanding with Olympus, I'll find it if you're interested).

4. I'm sure using the screen to select focus point is nice, as Paul says, and I would like to try it. Unfortunately with the screen facing the body it's not available!

5. Battery life is a bit better (I only use Oly original batteries). Battery management is much MUCH better. This has been an Achilles heel with all the E-system cameras right back to the E-1 - the battery charge indicator goes from full to OK to FEED ME NOW in random fashion ad the camera will sometimes keep shooting for ages while blinking orange, and other times will switch off almost immediately after you have just checked and seen a full charge. The Mk II has a percentage indicator which as far as I can see is pretty consistent, which makes it much easier to manage. (NB Apparently this only works with Oly original batteries)

Overall I think the Mk II's handling may be slightly better, but for this rugby season I have been using a Mk I and Mk II together and scarcely notice the differences. I don't regret getting it - whether it is worth it for you, only you can judge. Is there anywhere you could borrow one to try out?

Good luck whatever you decide .... John
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

I assume the 1,300 you have seen online is a grey import - having looked, I can't see any similar prices from the usual UK dealers - they're all around 1,850.

BTW, not very scientific, I know, but I think the Mark II is a brilliant camera, a good step up from the Mark I, and well worth it if you can get one at that price.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Graham_of_Rainham View Post
DxO have rated the DR of the mk1 at 12.7 and the mk2 at 12.8 measured with the 17mm f/1.8
I'm interested to know how any camera designer/manufacturer can squeeze more DR whilst simultaneously increasing photosite density, unless there has been a revolution in semiconductor design and fabrication. Smaller and more closely packed have benefits in certain applications, but I'm not too sure when it comes to photon buckets. Unfortunately more MP is marketing hype, the average Joe-Bloggs customer makes buying decisions on such nonsense.

Edit: If 0.1 is real, I'm impressed. If the sign was negative, I'd believe it without hesitation.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Ricoh View Post
I'm interested to know how any camera designer/manufacturer can squeeze more DR whilst simultaneously increasing photosite density, unless there has been a revolution in semiconductor design and fabrication. Smaller and more closely packed have benefits in certain applications, but I'm not too sure when it comes to photon buckets. Unfortunately more MP is marketing hype, the average Joe-Bloggs customer makes buying decisions on such nonsense.

Edit: If 0.1 is real, I'm impressed. If the sign was negative, I'd believe it without hesitation.
I'm pretty sure that the design process is pretty complex and that there are lots of factors beside pixel density that effect DR. Micro-lenses, charge well design, BSI, ... The Sony 1" sensors in things like the RX100IV offer noise pretty much the same as current u43 despite being 21Mp on a smaller sensor.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Ricoh View Post
If 0.1 is real, I'm impressed. If the sign was negative, I'd believe it without hesitation.
https://www.dxomark.com/Cameras/Comp...-M1___1136_909



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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

I love the way quieter mechanical shutter on the Mk II, besides having Silent Shutter throughout the ISO range unlike the limited range of the Mk I. Pro Capture is another nice feature when trying to grab that moment a bird takes off, so long as focus was achieved on it to start with, resulting in (hopefully) a frame that is not likely achievable otherwise.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Originally Posted by Ricoh View Post
I'm interested to know how any camera designer/manufacturer can squeeze more DR whilst simultaneously increasing photosite density, unless there has been a revolution in semiconductor design and fabrication. ...
Steve,
If the MkII sensor uses BSI (Back Side Interconnect) - which I believe to be the case, then because the sensor surface which collects the photons does not have wiring covering some of it's area each photocell will not have to shrink by 16/20 ratio as implied from the inreased pixel count. Hence the DR won't necessarily be diminished and,depending on the amount of front side interconnect area required by the MkI sensor, may actually be improved.
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Re: EM1 Mk1 vs Mk2

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Steve,
If the MkII sensor uses BSI (Back Side Interconnect) - which I believe to be the case, then because the sensor surface which collects the photons does not have wiring covering some of it's area each photocell will not have to shrink by 16/20 ratio as implied from the inreased pixel count. Hence the DR won't necessarily be diminished and,depending on the amount of front side interconnect area required by the MkI sensor, may actually be improved.
Good point. Looking at the DR of the Mk2 cf MK1 Graham posted above, not much between them at sensible ISO settings.

My curiosity got the better of me, the EM5 Mk1 has a DR of 12 at ISO 200.
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