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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 1:08 am 
I finally got a hand on a Panny G1 in Houston. Out of all places in the world, Microcenter was carrying a G1. It's currently "on sale" for $630.

I can't comment on image quality given that I don't own the G1 and did not bring a SD card with me. But I played with the G1 for about 20 minutes in the store, and was very impressed with the ergonomics, build quality, and the usability. The G1 is small, very small. Definitely smaller than my E410. Yet, it's easier to hold thanks to the pistol grip. The buttons are well placed, and the controls are very intuitive.

I loved the electronic viewfinder. It is like watching a TV, but a nice and bright TV. It is FAR FAR superior to the tiny optical viewfinder on the E410 and 510. The image looks huge and bright throught the EVF. I've read that the EVF has trouble tracking fast moving objects and it looks horrible in low light situations. I can't comment on that, because the area was well lit. What I can say is that after getting home, I looked through the viewfinder of my E510, and I felt like I was making a trip back in time to the 1900s.

One of the cool features about the EVF is how the EVF automatically zooms in when the G1 is in manual focus mode. So while it's nearly impossible to manual focus through the optical viewfinder in the E410 and 510, it's a piece of cake on the G1.

I had my fears that the G1's full time constrast based AF would be slow like the constrast based AF in the E420/520/620/30. And that it would definitely be slower than the phase shift AF while using the optical viewfinder in other DSLRs. My fears were unfounded. The G1's contrast based AF actually found focus fast! Very fast! Of course I did have good lighting inside the store, so it might not focus so fast in bad lighting. But while in the store, the camera's AF was very snappy.

After being disappointed with the E620, I am tempted to get a G1. The limited lens lineup is a bummer though. I do have the Oly 14-42, 40-150 and 25 pancake. So all of those would work with the G1's AF. But the G1 does not have built-in-body IS.

If there is someone wondering whether to upgrade from a compact to an entry level DSLR, don't forget to look at the G1.


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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 10:26 pm 
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Hi Armanius, I'm really glad you finally got to try out the G1 in person. By reading reviews (and watching video tours!) you can get a good impression of the size and mechanics of the screen for example, but you have to see the G1 in person to really appreciate it.

As you say, the excellent EVF, the surprisingly quick AF. It really is a very nice camera indeed, but as you say, the limited native lens selection and limitations with full-size 4/3 lenses is a significant downside.

So, you gonna go for it?!


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PostPosted: Fri May 01, 2009 11:25 pm 
Very tempting Gordon! That EVF is simply awesome (in good light anyway). So bright and big ... B&H in the US is now selling the blue version of the G1 for $630. So the price has come down by about $170 since its launch last November.

Gordon, when you had the G1, did you have trouble tracking moving objects like some users have complained about? And what about shooting in the continuous mode? Some have reported that the EVF freezes at each shot. In any event, I am very tempted to "go for it."

HOWEVER, now I am thinking that all the extra noise I saw on my E620 photos may have been due (at least in part) to the fact that my LCD monitor at home has oversaturated colors. When I saw the same images on my LCD monitor at work, they did not seem nearly as noisy. And the images looked more detailed too. I may end up "re-buying" the E620, especially now that the prices in the US for the E620 dropped by $100. Price at Adorama is $600 for body only.

Price for E-30 also dropped to $950 at Adorama.


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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 11:28 am 
Armanius wrote:
HOWEVER, now I am thinking that all the extra noise I saw on my E620 photos may have been due (at least in part) to the fact that my LCD monitor at home has oversaturated colors.


That's why you should always always have a calibrated monitor before you print/review/make any important decisions regarding photo.


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PostPosted: Sat May 02, 2009 9:58 pm 
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Hi Armanius, I can't remember off-hand about the EVF freezing, but I would expect it to briefly after taking a shot, just like the main monitor - it's essentially doing the exact same thing. Again you don't get this with an OVF, but then they do black-out on an SLR system.

Swings and roundabouts really.


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