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Olympus E-3 E-3 specific discussion.

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  #1  
Old 31st January 2008
OlyFlyer
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What is the verdict?

Hi all happy E-3 owners,

I have a couple of questions.
Is there or is there not a focusing issue with the E-3?
How about the new firmware? Did it solve any focusing problems if there was any?

Thanks for all the replies.
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  #2  
Old 31st January 2008
Solar Solar is offline
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Re: What is the verdict?

Hey Oly, I would say that there is definitely a focus issue that some people are having. But as to why is still a mystery. From having read the hundreds of posts between 3 forums on the subject I would have to say that the following reasons need to be taken into account.

1) Unfamiliarity with settings and the new focus system. This is covered a bit in Tony Spore's review of the E-3 on the 4/3's forum.
2) Holding down the shutter half-way and then accidentally tapping or moving the focus ring on SWD lenses (12-60 confirmed) will cause OOF to occur and may be underneath the shooter's awareness.
3) A genuine problem with the camera and/or lens where the new SWD is concerned.

Some changes since the focusing problem was first reported:

This is where Olympus has attempted to correct some of the genuine issues that have been duplicable.

1) Firmware update for both the E3 and 12/60 which does address some focus issues ... but have all the bugs been ironed out? Hard to say. I personally have been blessed with a great copy of the E3 and 12/60 so I cannot confirm a problem but a lack thereof.

The thing users need to do now with this update is shoot more photos and watch for OOF that can be positively attributed to camera/lens malfunction. Fluke OOF pictures should be discounted, only demonstrable OOF should be taken for granted as # 1 and #2 above are still valid reasons for OOF even with the new firmware.

Don't know if this answers your question definitively however it is my observation of the situation.

Solar
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  #3  
Old 1st February 2008
PeterD
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Re: What is the verdict?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OlyFlyer View Post
Hi all happy E-3 owners,

I have a couple of questions.
Is there or is there not a focusing issue with the E-3?
How about the new firmware? Did it solve any focusing problems if there was any?

Thanks for all the replies.
Hi OlyFlyer

The short answer is yes but not in all cases.

My problems were mainly with the 12-60 lens (once I had stripped away all the user causes) and the firmware update for the lens did not correct this. A replacement lens has been supplied from a new batch and this did not have the problem. The firmware on this lens had already been updated.

I had experienced some problems, at times, with the 70-300 lens but note that this has also been subject to a recent firmware update. So far, so good with this lens.

I beleive the camera firmware update included a change in the AF too.

Reading between the lines, I suspect that the early batches had set up problems in manufacture. These have been recognised and the corrections applied via the firmware updates. Some equipment possibly had other faults (this is where my 12-60 falls) and the updates was therefore not effective.

I think that the current tranche of new builds will be far better than those produced for the launch but we shall see.

I have to say that I am limiting my AF to either the diamond or centre point. I am still not confident in the all points AF as I do not fully understand the need for this.

Best Regards

PeterD
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  #4  
Old 1st February 2008
OlyFlyer
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Re: What is the verdict?

Thank you Peter for your situation picture. I am happy that your problems are solved. I am not worried about issues connected to lenses or the unfamiliarity.

My only concern is the camera. As for only the early adopters who have the problem, I am not sure. From what I hear, that is not the case, but I hope I am wrong. BTW, how can one check the manufacturing period? What is an early model? I mean, even if one shop has more than one body available (which is not reality in Sweden, but anyway...) it is highly likely that all the bodies come from the same batch, and as the camera is not even two months from the release date, I regard all of them early.

Cheers.
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  #5  
Old 1st February 2008
OlyFlyer
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Re: What is the verdict?

Hi Solar,

Thank you for your answer. I know what is said on the other forum and what is the conclusion on the forums. I follow 7 forums and am a member on 5 of them. I have also spent several hours trying to work out the situation, but the number of people chipping in without having the camera is just too much, and among the other camp, those who have the camera, there is a great number of repeats and many won't come back to admit user errors. So it is difficult to filter what is real and what is not.

The other thing is even if there are faulty cameras, there is a big difference between a few faulty cameras and a general problem. A few faulty cameras are easy to fix, but if there is a global problem then I say Olympus has no idea how to fix it and that would worry me. I would welcome if Olympus came out to the open and declared the situation, explaining the problem and set figures right as to the number of sold cameras against the number of faulty ones.

Cheers.
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  #6  
Old 1st February 2008
PeterD
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Re: What is the verdict?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OlyFlyer View Post
Thank you Peter for your situation picture. I am happy that your problems are solved. I am not worried about issues connected to lenses or the unfamiliarity.

My only concern is the camera. As for only the early adopters who have the problem, I am not sure. From what I hear, that is not the case, but I hope I am wrong. BTW, how can one check the manufacturing period? What is an early model? I mean, even if one shop has more than one body available (which is not reality in Sweden, but anyway...) it is highly likely that all the bodies come from the same batch, and as the camera is not even two months from the release date, I regard all of them early.

Cheers.
OlyFlyer

Just to add a footnote to my last. I understand, from other posts, that the demand for the E3 exceeded Olympus' projections by quite a large margin. This led to delays in delivery which have been well documented on this and other sites. From this, I conclude there are not many, if any, E3s from the early batch still in the retail chain.

Also, look at my experience, I originally thought the camera body was at fault because more than one lens gave trouble.

I agree with you however, that it would be nice for Oly to come clean but somehow I think the picture is too complicated and the number of faulty cameras/lens' following firmware update has been reduced further.

Kind regards

PeterD
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  #7  
Old 1st February 2008
jojo
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Re: What is the verdict?

I just purchased a new e-3 (it arrived last night). On the surface it seems to be ok (only taken 3 pictures). One annoying thing I noticed is that if it cannot focus (obvious by setting the focus at near then trying to lock on something at inifity) the camera will fail to focus; will NOT BEEP; but the green (ok i'm in focus light) will go on. I suspect this light really means "i'm done trying to focus" and the beep indicates if a lock was or was not obtained. The camera never beep when it failed to lock but the green light always went on at the end of the focus sequence. Very annoying user interface
--
I will make these unrelated comments:
I wish the zoom/focus rings on the 12-60 were swapped. The dial below the shutter is in a useless position; the dial next to the view finder is very easy (for me) to use (making the first dial issue not such a big deal).

The camera+lens is a bit heavier/bulkier than I would like (I'm using to a contax aria/35-70 which is some 400g lighter) but with current bodies/lenses available from olympus I don't really see a better option (e-510/14-54 perhaps ?)
--
Other than that no comments yet - will do a my complete test session over the weekend.
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  #8  
Old 1st February 2008
Solar Solar is offline
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Re: What is the verdict?

As indicated by PeterD's comments on the early batches of 12/60 lenses that had issues ... and my own experience, it makes sense that some early adopters of the camera had some truly bugged cameras but I do not think it was widespread.

I found it interesting that some people that were in no way connected geographically had issues with their camera. Now if it wasn't a lens issue then it was user or camera. It is my speculation wholly that perhaps there were some batches that were made at different times which had some errors in the manufacturing, e.g., batches 1,2,3,4,5,6, maybe batches 1 and 4 had a problem and that's why we have random crops of issues which makes it difficult to pinpoint an exact issue ... I hope I am articulating here properly.

Further information: A couple of weeks back when they released the 12/60 firmware update, my camera got disconnected prematurely resulting in dead firmware. This then was sent to the repair center to be re-loaded with new firmware. And although I didn't perceive a focus issue priorly, I was sent a whole new 12/60 (new serial #) from the other side of the country. This would indicate that certain early batches of the 12/60 may have had issues. (I purchased my 12/60 and E/3 at the same time on Nov 15).

This may be a point to consider when looking at the camera situation. I would say at this point if your patience has run thin, to just send the camera in citing the problems and I am almost sure you would just get a new one (well you may or may not have an E/3 but that's my advice to people still playing around with "issues".)
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  #9  
Old 7th February 2008
OlyFlyer
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Re: What is the verdict?

OK, next question. Is there a way to see when the camera or lens is made? I mean I buy the early batch argument, but how do you know it?
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  #10  
Old 7th February 2008
PeterD
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Re: What is the verdict?

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Originally Posted by OlyFlyer View Post
OK, next question. Is there a way to see when the camera or lens is made? I mean I buy the early batch argument, but how do you know it?
Good Morning OlyFlyer,

I cannot find an obvious way of determining when a piece of Olympus equipment is made (no date code). I think that the key is the serial number and a look up table, held only by Olympus, which would give this information.

As a guidline the table of E3s which was produced on another site (Can't remember exactly where but is was referred to in the focus issues thread) may assist.

I know a number of people had their cameras/lenses swopped out by Olympus rather than put into repair. I read from this that Olympus are trying to take 'suspect' cameras out of circulation. If so, this would be a positive move which should significantly reduce the chances of purchasing equipment with a fault.

Whilst we early purchasers have been critical (including me) of the quality of the launch equipment, I believe Olympus now have a handle on the causes and taken steps to eliminate these from manufacture.

I know the above does not directly answer your question but I hope it helps.

Kind regards

PeterD
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  #11  
Old 7th February 2008
DerekW DerekW is offline
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Re: What is the verdict?

How to find the date of manufacture

refer to the Wiki in the Knowledge Section of the FourThirds User Forum.

My camera and lens has gone to Olympus to have the comms failure problem fixed.

I hope the fix is achieved by getting a new body and lens - my faith in the current kit is somewhat low.
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  #12  
Old 7th February 2008
OlyFlyer
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Re: What is the verdict?

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterD View Post
I know a number of people had their cameras/lenses swopped out by Olympus rather than put into repair.
Hi Peter,

The problem is those people can get the camera of another 'swapper', especially if the repair center can not verify any error. Wouldn't you say there is a risk for that if we can't check the manufacturing date?

I think it is bad that Oly makes this a secret. It is probably there, somewhere hidden in the camera's hidden menus. I hope somebody figures out soon.

Cheers
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  #13  
Old 7th February 2008
DerekW DerekW is offline
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Re: What is the verdict?

I guess OlyFlyer has me on ignore
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  #14  
Old 7th February 2008
PeterD
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Re: What is the verdict?

Quote:
Originally Posted by OlyFlyer View Post
Hi Peter,

The problem is those people can get the camera of another 'swapper', especially if the repair center can not verify any error. Wouldn't you say there is a risk for that if we can't check the manufacturing date?

I think it is bad that Oly makes this a secret. It is probably there, somewhere hidden in the camera's hidden menus. I hope somebody figures out soon.

Cheers
Olyflyer

In the UK a supplier cannot sell refurbished goods as new without identifying it as such. Not sure of the rules in Norway but I would be surprised if they were different. This should avoid someone unkowingly purchasing equipment that has gone through the repair route.

I would also have thought that Olympus would be very unwise to recycle equipment that had a reported fault which could not be confirmed. They would quarantine or scrap such items. The last thing that they would want is to run the risk of allowing such problems to run on. People judge performance against the number of failures even if these can all be attributed to a small number of equipments.

Kind regards

PeterD
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  #15  
Old 7th February 2008
DerekW DerekW is offline
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Re: What is the verdict?

If we suspect recycling of dodgy kit then we can very quickly set up a thread for people to note the serial numbers of kit that should have gone back to be crushed.
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