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Olympus E-3 E-3 specific discussion.

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  #1  
Old 20th February 2008
Jim
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DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/olympuse3/

Always feel that there is a tiny niggle that they just don't want to like Oly's
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  #2  
Old 20th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

I have to disagree Jim.

I think it is a balanced review pointing out the strengths and weaknesses of the E3. As pointed out in the review the quality differences at high ISO's between the E3 and the likes of the D300 are minor and many wouldn't notice them but they are there. They describe the E3 as producing "fantastic results as long as you stay within its comfort zone." The review also states the superior build quality of the E3 and its weatherproofing saying "in extreme environmental conditions, where the E-3's superior weatherproofing puts it in a different class altogether to any camera in this price bracket. If you want to shoot in dirty, damp or humid conditions the E-3 should be high on your shortlist."

I know we all want our cameras to come through reviews with flying colours but we have to be realistic. The E3 isn't the best camera out there at high ISO, it doesn't have the best low light focusing performance, it doesn't have the highest dynamic range but it is still a fine camera and these differences are minor but a reviewer that doesn't point them out wouldn't be doing their job. As they state in the review "No camera is perfect, and whilst there are areas where the E-3 trails the competition slightly there are also other areas where it leads.....Ultimately though, despite its foibles, we liked the E-3; it feels great in the hand (even if it demands a longer than average learning curve), produces pleasing output most of the time, and has some really useful features. It sits at the heart of a system that is slowly maturing into a serious competitor for the dominant players, with some superb lenses, particularly the fast zooms." To me that doesn't sound like someone who doesn't want to like Olympus, if anything it sounds like the opposite.

Ian C.
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  #3  
Old 20th February 2008
Jim
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

Ian,

I really got the feeling when reading the list of 'cons' on the conclusion rather than the overall review. They seem to be struggling to find enough to list that things that would not normally be highlighted on other camera review are being used as 'cons'

I agree that is you read the full review then overall it is balanced, however, many start with the conclusions first.
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Old 20th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

I thought that it was one of the most comprehensive reviews of an Olympus camera I have read. It seemed to be praising where praise was deserved. iI can't ever see the 4 thirds system ever competing with the top end Canicks et al. But surely thats not what it is trying to do..It is an enthusiasts system made for people who require a lighter and more managable camera but still want superb glass. It isn't concieved as a reportage tool and can't ever compete in that field. Therefore it suceeds in its aim?
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Old 20th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

I thought it was a well balanced review too. If I had to pick on anything it would be the comments regarding the menu system. I find it easy to use once the preferences have been set but I'm coming from an E-1 and I'm used to the general design of Olympus menus.

All in all I think he liked it well enough to want to be able to find his way around it easier, either through improved menus or familiarity due to longer term use.

A pleasant change from the usual " can't beat the rest hands down on IQ in every situation so forget about it"
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Old 20th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

I thought the final score (and image score) were a bit harsh relative to other cameras. I.e, the e-510 is a 8.5 image quality and the E-3 is 8.0. Now, I'm not sure if this is because the competition has changed in 6 months (note that the 40d and sony 700 are both 9.0) or if it is an attempt to send a message. I.e, if the difference in IQ are 'minor' then I would expect an 8.5 or 9.0. However, this seems to indicate more than 'minor' difference.

Also, I'm a bit confused about the 'sharpness' issue. While I do think at the pixel level the E-3 images tend to look smeared compared to 40D (have not really studied the D300 or alpha 700) and I *think* total resolution is visibly less than the 40D it is not clear to me if at a normal crop or print (11x14) this difference is a benefit or negative.
--
Now maybe I am over emphasising the numerical score he gave the camera but something seems inconsistent.

With regards to Just highly recommended - this downgrade might very well be deserved. If the AF and auto exposure is noticeably worse than the competition then the camera overall grade should suffer.

What was unclear to me is if he tried to work around the limitation. I.e, the camera has a huge number of custom setting. Would changing the exposure mode (either uncoupling from the AF point or using center averaging) would the camera perform as good or better then the competition ? Likewise for AF (my personal believe is there might be a real issue with the AF - even single point AF but it remains to be seen if this is an actual problem and if it is design or firmware issue). I.e, I'm not saying his conclusion were accurate or not but I would like a better understanding of what he did and did not try and if they influence the performance of the camera.
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Old 20th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

I think a couple of times he mentioned that the differences between the cameras would not be seen in normal sized prints and only by pixal peeping can you see any difference , I think to quote he said "the pixal peepers will not be happy with these differences".

And thats the problem these days as everything is about pixel level or larger and not how prints look from the camera, as I guess this is the only way to differenciate between them as they are all as good as each other at producing prints in most cases.
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  #8  
Old 20th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

Sigh. I keep hoping for a camera with the resolution of a mamiya 7 (or better). I wonder if the new 24mp 35mm sensors have this level of improvement (over current crop of 10/12mp 1/2 frame cameras)
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Old 21st February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

I have read several E-3 reviews and found DPReview very balanced and fair.

My eyesight is not what is was but I have great difficulty recognising the ISO differences between the compared cameras up to ISO 800. I have used the E-510 at ISO 1600 and found the results as acceptable as a Fuji 1600 ASA film and have only tried out my E-3 at ISO 800 so far but found the results very acceptable.

Although I agree that the ergonomic characteristics of the camera are imperfect - the fact is - any instrument which is as complex as the E-3 is bound to take a long time for its operation to become "second nature". I am gradually finding the camera's functions becoming a little more natural. But I am sure I will never be entirely familiar with all its facilities however long I use it.

However, whether or not I agree with the reviews I read, I do find them extremely useful since the more I read the more I learn about the camera and how it is intended to be used. These reviewers invariably explain the various functions better than the E-3 Manual. After 3 years using digital cameras I am still a novice and am still coming to terms with the various functions available which I never had to consider in my "film" cameras.

Ray.
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  #10  
Old 29th February 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

If you haven't read the DPReview of the E-3 since it first appeared, it's worth having another look.

There were several errors of fact that have been corrected and the list of "Cons" has been cleaned up quite a bit! All credit to the reviewer for admitting the shortcomings.

He didn't alter the rather weird "Highly Recommended (Just)" though.

I want one (not just yet - I can't justify it at the moment - E-1 still going well!)

Steve
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Old 1st March 2008
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

Actually Phil at DP got kind of ticked over the fact that Olympus had not sent him an E-3 to do a review on while another site had received one around the same time. He had mentioned something about "if and when" concerning the review of the E-3.

The review was done by Simon. I have noticed a priority to cater to reviews of Canon and Nikon predominantly, not saying that they don't attempt to be fair, but that they, like certain photo magazines, seem to get the C&N reviews done first.

The recommendations, if you follow the threads at all and read the reviews, are very favorable toward C&N cameras and what seems a tad more critical of other brands such as Sony, Oly, et al.

This is just my observation.
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  #12  
Old 1st March 2008
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Barr1e Barr1e is offline
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

Here is an interesting review in comparison:

http://fourthirds-user.com/forum/sho...?p=11488#11488

Regards. Barr1e
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  #13  
Old 1st March 2008
jojo
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Re: DP Review - E3 Highly Reccomended (Just)

This is silly. Notice that the D300 review is still not available...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Solar View Post
Actually Phil at DP got kind of ticked over the fact that Olympus had not sent him an E-3 to do a review on while another site had received one around the same time. He had mentioned something about "if and when" concerning the review of the E-3.

The review was done by Simon. I have noticed a priority to cater to reviews of Canon and Nikon predominantly, not saying that they don't attempt to be fair, but that they, like certain photo magazines, seem to get the C&N reviews done first.

The recommendations, if you follow the threads at all and read the reviews, are very favorable toward C&N cameras and what seems a tad more critical of other brands such as Sony, Oly, et al.

This is just my observation.
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