Hi all, As I havve posted previously, I am off to Nepal tomorrow for 5 weeks of treking, rafting etc. Given that I will be up around 5000m I decided to invest in a new camera kit for trips like this where weight is a real issue.
I bought the following:
Olympus PEN E-P3 Body Colour Black
Olympus 12mm f2.0 EW Ultra Wide Lens
Olypmus Zuiko Digital Micro 4/3 ED 9-18mm f/4.0 - f/5.6 lens)
Olympus M.Zuko Digital ED 14-150mm f/4.0 - f/5.6
Olympus 45mm f1.8 Lens PEN Zuiko
Panasonic 20mm f 1.7 pancake.
Hoya 52mm Circular Polarizer Pro 1D Filter (H52P1DTW)
Hoya 58mm Circular Polarizer Pro 1D Filter (H58P1DTW)
Olympus VF-2 Electronic Viewfinder Colour Black
Lots of generic batteries.
I have had about a month to to play with the E-P3. I have found that is that it is a great small package. Image quality is excellent up iso 1600.
Autofocus is amazingly fast. Its all a bit different and takes time to get used to after being a long time Canon SLR then Canon DSLR user.
The weight and size of the all the lenses is so small the whole kit can fit in a tiny bag. I am still going to use my lowepro back pack but there is room now for my Down jacket and other gear including a Joby Gorrilapod.
The super panel provides fast access to all the settings. The settings and custom options seem huge at first but can soon be tamed.
The prime lenses are excellent .. I love the 12 mm to walk around with.
The 45 is also excellent in low light and for portraits. No problems getting great Bokeh with this despite the m43 sensor.
The 9-18 zoom is good but not quite as wide as my 10-22 on a canon 50d. The 14-150 is also very good as a general travel zoom. Not quite as flexible as my Tamron 18-270 on my DSLR but still very good.
Battery life seems is much worse than a DSLR but I have bought heaps of cheap generic batteries.
The whole weight of my new kit is next to nothing. My feeling is that the primes will spend most their time on the camera.
Jpeg quality is excellent. It give an image that I am very happy with. Only thing I have changed is dropping the noise filter back to light. The jpegs are much better than what comes out of my 50D. So much so that I am going to shoot mainly jpeg except in crazy lighting. Even in those situations the camera does pretty well with the jpeg images. Olympus has done a great job with their jpeg algorithms.
There is a a lot to like about this camera. Even the touch screen works well and is more than a gimmick. It really allows amazing fast changes to focal point.
Glad I got the vf2. I found that I actually don't mind taking photos off the screen despite being a diehard optical viewfinder user. However I think the vf2 is essential in really bright light.
Things I don't like...tracking focus is crap-- I will keep my DSLR for sports and animals.
High iso performance could be better but when you actually make prints and leave on screen pixel peeping behind there is bugger all between all the mirrorless cameras.
The vf2 increases camera bulk. It would be nice to have a built in evf.
Ideally the camera should be weathersealed and the lenses - again a wish for me.
So despite being a long time DSLR user I am pleasantly surprised how good the e-p3.
I think it nearly makes an ideal travel camera. I will write a comprehensive review of my travels with the camera with plenty of pics when I return.