Sony E 10-18mm f/4 OSS vs FUJINON XF14mm f/2.8 R vs Panasonic G Vario 7-14mm f/4.0 ASPH vs Olympus M.Zuiko 9-18mm f/4.0-5.6 lens sharpness comparison at DSLR Check.

That's a whole train of wide angle mirrorless system lenses, and it seems the caboose* has derailed somehow, pretty soft and fringy compared to the other 3, BUT it was used with a GH3, not the best of combinations. Kudos to Sony to make such a sharp wideangle (used with a NEX-5R) zoom lens, they had a slow start but seem to have begun catching up by now. As for the Fujinon xf 14mm (mounted on the X-E1), it performs as expected, very sharp with no visible Chromatic Aberrations. The PanaLeica 7-14mm falls a bit behind, but it is the oldest lens of the bunch, by a wide (heh) margin. Click on the image for the full thing. For those daring enough to delve through the Google translated text, here's a snip: . . . read more

Sigma 19mm f/2.8 EX DN lens review by Jordan Steel at Admiring Light: I should't like it, but I love it.

Bokeh from the Sigma 19mm EX DN lens is relatively neutral.

The lens was tested with an Olympus E-M5 camera, and Kudos to Jordan for not stripping the EXIF information from the images.

"The Sigma 19mm is a lens that frankly, I shouldn’t like. I’ve been using pretty much nothing but high end lenses for the past 6 years, and generally a budget lens like this wouldn’t even ping my radar. Then there’s that somewhat odd focal length, it’s relatively slow aperture and unremarkable size . But the fact of the matter is, I do like this lens. Sigma managed to make an affordable lens that is well built with a fast and silent autofocus motor. They then made it . . . read more

The Photography Blog's compact system camera of the year award goes to the Olympus OM-D E-M5

Olympus E-m5 the most voted best compact system camera of 2012

I Wonder if Olympus has a big enough trophy case for the awards collected by the E-M5 :)

"The OM-D E-M5 is the best Olympus compact system camera to date, and also a strong contender for best compact system camera full stop. It delivers a compelling mix of classic looks, excellent image quality, an extensive feature set and immediate responsiveness, with the camera so well designed that it rarely gets in the way of the creative process. The E-M5 may hark back to a bygone era, but it’s definitely bang-up-to-date in all the places that count.”

Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8 lens review at Photo Review: Buy it if you require a fast wide-angle lens for general-purpose use and if you'd like a lens that requires no readjustment when you fit polarisers and graduated filters.

The M.Zuiko Digital 17mm f/1.8 lens shown without end caps and lens hood.

"We tested the review lens on two camera bodies, the PEN E-PM2 (which is reviewed separately) and the OM-D E-M5. It performed better on the latter camera so we've used those results as the basis for this review. Autofocusing was as fast as the camera supports and generally very quiet, making this lens ideal for use when shooting movie clips.

Subjective assessment of shots straight from the camera showed them to be a little soft. However, they became 'sharp as a tack' after very modest unsharp masking in Photoshop.

. . . read more

Olympus Pen E-PM2 review at Photo Revue: The E-PM2 is a nice little camera for snapshooters making their first foray into interchangeable-lens photography.

FlashAir cards can only be used in the E-PL5, E-PM2 and XZ-2 cameras.

"The E-PM2 is a nice little camera for snapshooters making their first foray into interchangeable-lens photography. However, it won't encourage them to develop their photographic skills and understanding because it is simply too difficult to access and adjust most of the key camera settings (particularly lens aperture and shutter speed settings). For this reason, it's also ill-suited to photo enthusiasts.

User interface design has long been an issue with Olympus cameras that really needs to be addressed - and we aren't the . . . read more

Best of Show: Top 5 Digital Cameras from CES 2013 by Laura Hicks at Digital Camera Review

the best cameras of ces 2013

"#1 Fuji X100S One word - Luxury. This camera is a beautiful. With a retro camera body that looks almost identical to the X100, the X100S is the epitome of a luxury camera. An advanced 16.3MP APS-C X-Trans CMOS II Sensor and improved EXR Processor II make this camera the fastest autofocus in its class. The X100S has a fixed 23mm f2 lens. But this beauty comes at a price. The camera is expected to be released in the spring of 2013 and available for around $1300. I bet your first reaction was, "Wow, that's a lot of money for a fixed lens compact camera." And I will admit . . . read more

Rob Knight sees red, converts his old Olympus E-P3 to shoot infrared.

IR infrared tif image after raw conversion in Olympus Viewer 2

"I sent the camera off to Life Pixel to do the conversion. Basically they remove the filter inside the camera that blocks infrared light and replace it with an IR filter. After the conversion the camera only sees infrared light, and you can capture IR images without filters in front of the lens. The camera’s meter works as usual and you don’t need the long exposures required for traditional IR filters.

I had them install the “Enhanced Color” IR filter. The enhanced color filter accentuates the difference between colors in . . . read more

Olympus PEN E-PL5 review by Phil Hall at What Digital Camera: Impressive results from the Micro 4/3 sensor, fast single AF acquisition, decent metal finish, but continuous AF and AF Tracking still needs improving, also, the grip feels too plasticky.

Olympus PEN E-PL5 review sample images gallery

"At first glance, the E-PL5 seems nothing more than a tweak to the E-PL3, but while it may look similar, the E-PL5 feels like a completely different camera underneath. This is in no small part due to the rather impressive 16.1MP sensor borrowed from the OM-D. While it probably doesn't beat APS-C rivals, it's much closer, making the difference negligible and less of a deal-breaker. Add to that a host of subtle improvements over the E-PL3 and the E-PL5 is now one of the most competent CSCs at this price-point. There's still room for improvement however - the grip needs to be refined, while the . . . read more

J Shin at Leica Rumors: Why I Am Leaving Leica for Micro Four Thirds.

"I will bluntly say, the lenses for the classic SLR and rangefinder cameras offered by Canon, Nikon, Olympus, Minolta, Rollei, Pentax, Contax, and the like rarely came close to Leica M or R quality. There was a time when you could pick up a Yashica and a Leica, shoot a few rolls of film, and place them side-by-side, and the winner was readily apparent. Yes, readily.

No more. All the cameras and lenses now simply exceed the capacity of a semi-trained human eye to tell the . . . read more

Olympus M.Zuiko 17mm f/1.8 review by Ivo Freriks at Camera Stuff Review: If you are looking for a high brightness and a nice creamy background, a choice for the optically superior Olympus 45 mm or 75 mm lenses is more obvious than for the 17mm lens.

"The Olympus 17 mm 1.8 is a nicely built lens with which you can focus quickly and accurately, automatically or manually. On this Olympus 17 mm 1.8 lens is a ring, which acts as an AF / MF switch. The focus ring stops at 25 cm or infinity and the focus ring has a pleasant resistance when focusing. This takes away the concerns that some photographers have against the electronic focus-by-wire system. The AF is also completely silent, which makes this lens very suitable for video. At full aperture, this lens already draws quite sharp in the center. From aperture 1.8, the center resolution . . . read more

Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12mm f/2.0 review at Camera Hoarders: Sharpness is excellent. At F/2 the lens shows slightly softer results both centre and corner, but nothing that prevented me from using it regularly wide open.

"Olympus 12 F/2 ED lens is quite a good performer. At $700 – $800 it is not cheap, but then you get what you pay for. F/2 wideangles this small are not something that grows on trees. It’s sharp across the frame at F/2 and gets really sharp from F/2.8 to F/8. There is visible vignette at F/2 but disappears already at F/2.8 so there’s really hardly anything to complain from optical performance standpoint. Unique manual focus implementation makes this lens really desirable for . . . read more

Olympus OM-D E-M5 long term review by Scott Bourne at Photo Focus: The Olympus is not a perfect camera. Shock. Of course there is no such thing. But for me, (not necessarily you) it is as close as I’ll come right now.

Since using the EM-5 I haven’t been bothered by a single cop-wannabe security gu

"When it comes to the intangibles like general camera support, accessories, education, repair, spare parts, the Olympus/Panasonic MFT cameras come up short. But not by much. Pros cannot count on anything like CPS or NPS from Panasonic or Olympus. That means repair times might run into weeks or even months. There aren’t as many classes, third-party books, etc. for MFT shooters. Accessories for the MFT cameras aren’t quite as abundant as they are for DSLRs but this is getting to be a horserace. There are more and more MFT accessories becoming available and I am quite happy with the . . . read more

Mike Johnston (The Online Photographer) finally, FINALLY, picks his camera of the year, shows that this year almost everybody agrees on which camera it should be.

No, we won't spoil it, coz we at Estiasis love Mike, and we want youto head over to TOP and read his award rant that circles mostly around American football:

""Best of" awards have always annoyed me because of a principle I'm highly aware of, yet which doesn't, to my knowledge, have a name. Namely: the closer to equal two things are, the less important it should be to rank them, but the more important it seems to be to humans to do so. So if two DACs (digital to analogue converters) are almost indistinguishable . . . read more

Photo rumors roundup of what to expect from Canon, Fujifilm, Olympus, Panasonic, Nikon and Sony at CES 2013: Except for Fujifilms 'x' replacements, mostly point and shoot digicams as usual.

Fujifilm x20 and x200 as well as Nikon 1 J3 are expected at CES 2013

"Fujifilm will announce 5 new FinePix cameras: 3 super zooms, one rugged model and 0ne "regular" compact camera. The top of the line superzoom (pictured above) is rumored to have a very fast AF. I still do not have reliable information about a potential X10 or X100 replacement, but those two cameras are still a possibility.

Olympus will probably announce 6 new point and shoot cameras: 3 rugged models and 3 super zoom cameras (with 24x- . . . read more

Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 ED R MSC review by Sebastian Milczanowski at Photozone: From a price/performance perspective, the Olympus is a viable choice but it stays short of the higher expectations from more ambitious users.

The M.Zuiko 40-150mm R is not a high performance lens but it does a decent job.

"The Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 40-150mm 1:4-5.6 R is a quite good entry-level telephoto zoom lens. It may not be a cracker in terms of delivered resolution but it is no show-stopper either. The image quality is quite impressive in the low to mid portion of the zoom range. At 150mm it is somewhat weaker but not terribly so. Image distortions are usually cared about by the camera's auto-correction mechanism but technically they are only very obvious at 40mm anyway (in RAW data only). Vignetting is usually nothing to worry about either. Lateral CAs can get obvious at 40mm but they're not . . . read more

BCN Ranking has compiled the list of most sold mirrorless and Dslr cameras in Japan during 2012, get ready for some surprises.

bcn japan sales ranking for dslr and mirrorless cameras in 2012

The Japanese camera market tend to be different from the western ones, and in some cases VERY different, like the relatively strong Pentax presence in both categories. Google transgorbler has this to say:

Top 20 share sales by reflex camera digital SLR series 2012
(: May 24 to 12 January 1, 2012 the aggregation period)
. . . read more

Thom Hogan's Serious camera of the year award goes to the Olympus E-M5, Thom explains why it was hard to choose between the OM-D and the Fuji X-E1.

Olympus E-M5, voted as serious camera of the year by Thom Hogan.

This is a Sans Mirror award, so, fans of mirrors and smoke please look elsewhere. Thom's nominees include the Sony NEX-6, the Panasonic GH3, and the Fujifilm X-E1:

"The E-M5's image quality is good enough that it basically replaced my Nikon D7000 (DX DSLR) as my hike-deep-into-the-backcountry camera. Why? Because I gave up nothing terribly significant in the sensor, but lost weight and size while gaining some exceptional small lenses (Note to Nikon: please get off your butt and make some more, and better, DX . . . read more

Resolution (And moire) comparison test between the Sony NEX-7, NEX-5R, Fuji X-E1, Panasonic G5 and Olympus E-M5 at Dslr-Check.

Test resolution Panasonic DMC-G5 versus OM-D NEX7 XE1 and NEX5R

Two things are amazing about this comparison: First, the amount of detail these small sensors can resolve nowadays. And second, how susceptible they have become to moire due to weak or absent antialiasing filter. There are full sized samples from each camera, a bit further down the page, one for a jpeg straight from the camera and another jpeg converted from Lightroom. Oh, there's another amazing thing, the amount of screw-ups Google translator can do on a simple page as this: . . . read more

Roger Cicala asks Santa to bring gifts to his favorite camera and lens manufacturers, notes that Sigma and Tamron have both been very nice kids this year.

"Nikon: I’m asking for a lot here, Santa, but ‘tis the season to help those in need.

First, if you could fit a quality control department in the sleigh that would be lovely.

Also, could you bring Nikon USA a reasonable Factory Service Center, too? If that’s not possible, then I’ll go ahead and ask you to bring them some customers in 2014 or so, because they’ll be needing new customers about then. And . . . read more

Olympus E-M5 cameras used (among some Canon 5D mk II and Alexas) in filming the new Mad Max:Road Fury movie!

Olympus E-M5 cameras used in filming the new Max Max: Road Fury (2013) movie.

The use of Alexa pro film cameras, and even Canon's 5D mark II/III is expected, but the E-M5, wow. Maybe they fell for the almost steadycam-ish results the IBIS-5 stabilizer produces: 

"The film was shot by John Seale ACS ASC (and David Burr ACS on second unit) using six ALEXA PLUS cameras and four ALEXA M cameras, as well as Canon 5Ds and Olympus OM-D E-M5s, according to the Australian Cinematographers Society (ACS), which initially reported the end of principal photography. (Initial plans to shoot in 3D were scrapped and the film is . . . read more

Olympus issues new firmware for the Stylus XZ-2

Firmware version 1.1 adresses just one thing: "Image processing while shooting with ISO bracketing was adjusted" . . . read more

DP Review Enthusiast Zoom Compact Cameras roundup: Canon PowerShot G15 vs Canon PowerShot S110 vs Fujfilm X10 vs Fujifilm XF1 vs Nikon Coolpix P7700 vs Olympus XZ-2 vs Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 vs Samsung EX2F vs Sony RX100

"If you're looking for a balance of size, image quality (even in low light) and direct control, we'd recommend taking a long hard look at the Sony Cyber-shot RX100, the Olympus Stylus XZ-2 and the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7. The Sony RX100's 20MP sensor gives it an advantage when it comes to resolution and the size of the sensor keeps it competitive in low light. There are some compromises to be made in terms of size and lens range but these models offer a compelling degree of versatility, especially if this will be your only camera. . . . read more

Nikon P7700 vs Olympus XZ-2 at Camera Hoarders: Very similar in image quality, but everything else is from two different worlds.

Nikon P7700 coolpix, black, front view.

"Olympus XZ-2 focuses a bit faster, and benefits from touch screen. Manual focus implementation is excellent; at the click of the front switch front control ring starts to rotate freely and operates MF. Macro focus is not perfect though – XZ-2 sometimes struggled to focus and gave me false positives.

Nikon is a bit slower to focus with more traditional manual focus implementation – it has to be selected via dedicated button amongst several focus options and then use rotating wheel surrounding multi-way controller at the back. It . . . read more

Olympus releases new firmware for the pen E-PL5 and E-PM2 cameras, adds just a tiny little fix.

Olympus meager firmware update makes Homer sad.

This is it: "Unstable exposure, while using lenses that cannot communicate with cameras (such as OM or body cap lenses), has been improved." Let's hope E-M5 owners eagerly awaiting the next 'stuffed with goodies' firmware update promised to be delivered soon, will get a bit more than this. . . . read more

Olympus E-PL5 review at Steves-Digicams: I bet its not written by Steve, and I bet the reviewer gets paid by the word (review conclusion word count: 1922 words), and why are there more ads on this site nowadays than AOL on steroids? (P.S they liked it)

E-PL5's advertised ISO 25600 is not usable in any capacity. No s*it Sherlock!

"Continuing the Olympus Digital PEN series, the E-PL5 is another great addition to this ever growing line of compact, interchangeable lens cameras. As a mid-range model, the E-PL5 packs in a 16-Megapixel Live MOS imaging sensor, TruePic VI processor, Sensor Shift image stabilization, incredibly fast AF system and a load of creative features and filters to keep this camera well rounded.

. . . read more

Olympus Stylus XZ-2 review at the Phoblographer: Not really bad, but being in the same category as the Sony RX100, it will have difficulties making it to the top of one's list.

AF is not in the same class as the competition or it’s Micro Four Thirds cousins

"It’s not all roses though. AF can be very sluggish in less than ideal light and the shutter lag may cause you to miss important moment. And, while customization is good, I found myself wishing the function buttons could perform tasks that were not an option in the menu. But, I think the XZ-2′s biggest challenges are it’s size and it’s price. This camera is coat pocketable but so are many of the Micro Four Thirds (MFT) bodies. If there really is no major difference in size between the two, I think most advanced users would prefer the larger sensor of a MFT camera over the small point and shoot sized . . . read more

Pop Photo camera of the year: Canon 5D Mark III. Runner up(s): Nikon D800 and Sony SLT A-99. Honorably Mentions: Fujifilm X-pro1 and Olympus E-M5.

Since there's no entry in my lexicon for 'camera of the year methodology' will refrain from a rant flood, and pass you on to the article, as the Pop Photo editors explain the why and how of the whole thing:

"2012 proved a truly great year for cameras. In the wake of 2011’s devastating tsunami in Japan and flooding in Thailand, camera manufacturers released nearly two years’ worth of terrific models in 2012, all within a span of eight months.

But our Camera of the Year choice came down to just three real finalists—the Canon EOS 5D Mark III, the Nikon D800, . . . read more

Olympus OMD EM-5 vs Fujifilm X-E1 comparison review by Lindsay Dobson: You can't compare the incomparable, each camera is good on its own merit. Also: Many gorgeous images!

When speed is important, or RAW shooting, I grab my OMD.

"So how do I feel about my new cameras? Well I’m delighted with both of them, but for different reasons. I was more or less able to predict how the XE1 would perform based on my ownership and love for my existing X cameras and my familiarity with the brand. But the OMD was something of a revelation, I really didn’t expect a micro 4/3 camera to produce images which were often difficult to distinguish from those of the Fuji, even in low light.

There really is very little between them. Fuji grain is quite fine and the images are very smooth, but you really only . . . read more

The Gritty Monkey reviews the Fujifilm X-E1, pits it against the Sony NEX-7 and Olympus E-M5, ends up choosing the smelliest one.

"So why the Fuji X-E1 then?

- This might sound crazy to a lot of people, but one of the first reasons why I ended up choosing the X-E1 is because that camera just looks beautiful. It smells like photography, It’s like it’s calling you to take it with you and go shoot something! Whether ugly tools are as good as nice looking ones to craft beautiful art is a tough question, I’ll leave it up to you  All I know is that the form of this camera is almost inspiring.
- I love the dedicated dials to set the shutter speed and exposure compensation, and the aperture settings directly on
. . . read more

Backscatter's holiday shopping guide for 2012: Did you know there's a 'Lightroom 4 for underwater photographers' book out there?

"Lightroom 4 for the Underwater Photographer features over 10 hours of in-depth video tutorials, covering Lightroom's entire workflow from downloading images, to editing and showcasing them. Geared specifically toward the underwater photographer, the movies offer a complete workflow solution to help you efficiently manage your ever-growing photo library and handle your post production work too. This year's tutorials will be delivered on a USB thumb drive, so you can resuse it as storage media." . . . read more

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