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Micro Four Thirds Discuss the newly announced Micro Four Thirds addition to the Four Thirds system family here.

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Old 21st January 2011
R MacE's Avatar
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Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

I've been using E-System DSLR's almost since I switched from a 35mm OM based set-up (briefly used a Nikon D70) Although I have an E-1 and an E-3 I find that since buying an E-420 I use it almost exclusively to the extent that I still haven't sent my E-3 off for repair (broken LCD screen housing)

I looked at the Panasonic G-1 when it was released and although I liked it I held off waiting for Olympus to release their version. Unfortunately it appears Olympus aren't interested in this segment of the market so I've resigned myself to switching to Panasonic.

I need an EVF ( not interested in a clip on EVF) and although I don't have a swivel screen on the E-420 it's the feature I miss most, the only thing I miss about the E-3 to be honest. Panasonic appear to have an excellent range of lenses although nothing in the range of the Zuiko 11-22. I could use my 4/3rds lenses as a stop gap but the ones I have are all pre SWD. I have the 11-22mm , 14-42mm, 14-54mm mk1 and 50-200mm v1 but the only ones I'd be likely to use are the 11-22 and 14-54, possibly also the 14-42.

Of the current range of m4/3rds lenses the ones that would interest me are;

Olympus 9-18
Panasonic 14-42 or 14-45 (apart from focal length what's the difference?)
Panasonic 14mm
Panasonic 20mm

has anyone used either the G1 or G2 and also one of the E-System bodies with the 10mp sensor (E-420/520/E-3) how does the DR compare with the G-1/2.
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Old 22nd January 2011
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StephenL StephenL is offline
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Re: Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

Yes, I've got the G2, have owned the G1, the E510, E520, E620, E3, E1 and EP2.

The Panasonic 14-45 is supposed to be a sharper lens than the 14-42 - as I haven't owned both together I can't comment, but the 14-42 seems OK.

The 9-18 is a great lens - versatile and sharp. For me, a better focal length set than the 11-22.

The DR of the G2 seems somehow just a tad better than the OLympus, but I still rue the day I sold my E620. Oly colour, even in Raw, is just so much better.
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Old 22nd January 2011
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Re: Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

Hi, thanks for that, the 9-18 would be my preferred choice although I didn't buy the E-System 9-18 as I already had the 11-22.

You mention the DR is better on the G-2 but the colour better on the Olympus, is there much difference? Olympus are very good when it comes to red, my mates Nikon D90 is very poor on red, it looks flat but if the saturation is increased it blows out. I rarely shoot Raw these days preferring Jpeg for my intended use and it means much less time spent on the computer.

I understand the G2 uses a touch screen, is it reactive or conductive, can it be operated wearing gloves or is it possible to operate the camera fully without using the touch screen?

You mention you had an E-620, that looks like a great camera, most of the benefits of an E-3 without the weight/bulk, I love the super control panel on the E-System cameras as it's much faster tha the direct buttons on the E-3 which I find aren't particularily intuitive, how does the G1/2 compare, do they have a version of the SCP?

Finally how does the G1 compare regardinging image quality with the E-420/520/620 generation cameras?

Thanks, Richard
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Old 22nd January 2011
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Re: Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

I have a G1 and my Wife uses a G2. We used to have a E510 and a E410 with 14-42, 11-22, 14-54, 40-150Mk1, 40-150Mk2, 70-300 and 35mm Macro.
Since buying the G1 & G2 we have sold everything except the E510, 15-54, 70-300 and 35 Macro. I also have a Panasonic LX3 which goes everywhere with me.
We have the Panasonic 14-45 & 14-42 m4/3rds and the 45-200 telephoto. I find that I am using the G1 more and more and the E510 less.
Obviously weight has a lot to with it but the G1/G2 focussing system is so good I actually find it very difficult to go back to just 3 focussing points on the e510.
The fact I can single focus anywhere on the screen and change the size and move it around is a big factor. The 10x magnification for manual focus is brilliant. The Intelligent Auto works exceptionally well for the quick shot.
Having 4/3. 3/2 and 16/9 aspect ratio is a big plus, makes not having a wide angle lens easier to cope with.
The 14-45 and 14-42 are just as good as the equivalent Olympus but I am slightly disappointed with the 45-200 I feel it lacks a bit of contrast. Must buy an adaptor and try the 70-300 on it.
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Old 22nd January 2011
Alan Clogwyn
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Re: Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

If you want to shoot JPEG I think you'll end up being disappointed by the Panasonic. It seems to do some sort of auto level when processing the JPEGS which really seems to screw up the colours unless you're in sunlight, plus there isa lot more JPEG compression applied so they don't stand as much PP as Oly JPEGs.

What I have found to make the most difference, is the simple addition of a Cokin P121S graduated filter, and 1 - 1.3EV underexposure, that makes a very very welcome improvement to colours and contrast. Have a look at these, all are out of camera JPEGs using the above filter xcept on number 4.

I went for a GH1 as Dynamic range and ISO performance are markedly improved over the rest of the 4/3 range. I am considering a PEN body for those times when I need Olympus colour though, There really is nothing quite like it.
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Old 22nd January 2011
Ulfric M Douglas Ulfric M Douglas is offline
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Re: Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

Alan I'm not at all disappointed by the Panasonic Jpegs : they are as good as the e-410 and e-600 which we also own, but the colours are simply different.
The G1 gives me three frames with different colour settings if I want, a really useful tool not just a gimmick.
One of my G1 lives permantently attached to a Yashinon 45mm F1.7 lens and that's what I take most pics with albeit plenty of black&whites. If precise focusing of manual lenses is needed you really can't do better than a good EVF and the G1 is the camera with the cheapest of those by far!

The other G1 lives with the kit 14-45 lens and that's what I hand over to friends because in auto it is foolproof and they can even hold it out and use the screen if they are feeling like ... modern ... muppets.

If I want bursts of pics then my wife's e-600 jumps in, also for lovely vivid colours and iso-bracketing. If dynamic range is goiing to be an issue I'll take the G1 out and set 5 frames bracket, with the tripod ... or take the e-600 out and take one frame with ISO-bracket giving me three files to fuse later. Horses for courses.

The e-410 is my rugged camera with whatever old 50mm is on at the time.
Anyone who sells an e-410 or e-510 to replace it with the more modern things is going to lose something.

I have a place for all of them and can heartily recommend the purchase of a Lumix G1 ... at the right price, of course. (Or buy a new G2)
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Old 22nd January 2011
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Re: Considering a DMC-G1 or G2

Thanks for the advice guys, Ulfric I use the E-420 when backpacking/hill walking primarily due to the reduced weight/bulk. It's a tough little camera, been left rattling around on the bottom of my canoe getting wet/muddy and during the recent snow it was on the hill in a blizzard, tripod mounted with the back completely plastered with snow then stuffed back in a CCS belt pouch. I love the size the UI but it doesn't get treated with kid gloves and for my needs it does everything that the E-3 does in a package lighter and no bigger than the OM's I used to use, IMHO the 4** series are the best E bodies to date and the true successors to the OM System, I haven't used my E-3 at all since getting the E-420.

That said the lens range is limited for my needs with the E system so I end up using an OM 50mm 1.8 for shallow DOF but focussing/exposure is trial and error to an extent which isn't always easy in the weather conditions I sometimes find myself in. Having handled the G1 when it was released I was impressed by the UI and build quality, compareable to the E-420 but perhaps not quite at E-3 level but then the E-3 doesn't have the feel of an E-1, the toughest of the E System bodies so far IMO.

Don't get me wrong the E-3 is a good camera and works with a grip and 50-200mm for action better than the E-420. I'd hate to sell any of my current bodies/lenses until I see how the G1/2 perform although I am very tempted to go for a G1 and 14mm /f2.5 or 20mm f/1.7. I'd thought about trying to use my Olympus 14-42 but by the time I'd buy an MMF-1 adapter I think I might as well spend the extra and get the proper 14-42/45 lens or even the Olympus m4/3rds 9-18mm.
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