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 Post subject: Lenses info
PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:44 pm 
I have never owned a SLR and I don't know too much about photography, but the EP1 seems like a great camera and I am considering getting one. However, I had questions regarding the lenses' wide angle coverage:

If the lens that we use with the EP1 are the 14-42mm, for what I understand the 35mm equivalent for this would be 28(at wide angle)-84(at telephoto)mm, is this correct? So for the newer Olympus M.Zuiko Digital 40-150mm, does that mean that the telephoto is equivalent to 300mm and the wide angle to 80mm? It seems strange to me considering that some compact cameras like the Fuji F300EXR offer 24mm - 360mm (15x) zoom lens. I must be getting something wrong because how can a compact camera offer the same or even more telephoto and much wider angle at 24mm?

Thanks in advance!

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:35 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 12:48 pm
Posts: 8087
Location: UK
For the 35mm equivalent focal lengths used to compare across different types of camera, that is correct. The focal length only really tells you the field of view you get. It tells you nothing about any other aspect of image quality.

As a general rule, the higher the zoom ratio, the lower the image quality will get in some way. Maybe softness, distortion, colour aberrations, or others.

With a compact camera, usually high image quality isn't the goal, but a balance of size and other features. One such feature might be a massive zoom range. Also note compact cameras typically have smaller sensors than not so compact cameras. This has various considerations but loosely speaking, it is easier to design lenses for small sensors than big ones.

Coincidently, I have an E-P1 and have been looking closely at the F300EXR with a view of getting that to supplement it.

Canon DSLRs: 7D2, 7D1, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 70-300L, 100-400L, 100L, MP-E 65, EF-S 10-18, 15-85
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 50/1.4A, 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS
Compacts: Sony HX9V, Fuji X100.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 4:56 pm 
Thanks for the reply. So then really the M.Zuiko 40-150mm has a wide angle of 80mm (35 equivalent)? Does this mean that, for example the F300EXR covers about 3 times more area at wide angle? Is it not possible to create a Micro4/3 lens that has long zoom and wide angle (without IQ compromise)?

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:02 pm 
DSLRs have so called ultrazooms which tend to be about 18-200mm. These are OK for general use, but dont really have great image quality.

If a large zoom range is what you are looking for, then a compact camera will probably suit you better, unless you want to carry and change multiple lenses :wink:

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 5:57 pm 
Yes I do need zoom... how about the M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-150mm? That would have both wide angle and good zoom. Do you know if the IQ gets too compromised with this lens?

Another options that I am considering in the compact sector are the Fuji that I mentioned, the Casio EX-FH100, the Sony HX5 and the not released yet Nikon P7000 (less zoom but bigger sensor)...

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 23, 2010 9:23 pm 
Yes, that lens you mention may be useful. I have a similar lens, 18-200, which based on different sensor sizes gives the same field of view.

But of course image quality is compromised with these lenses, otherwise there would be no need for other lenses. :wink: Also, note that the aperture opens a lot smaller than other lenses on these super zooms.

On this page Gordon compares the image quality from a superzoom to a prime, so you can see for yourself the image compromises.

A lens like this isnt designed for pin sharp images, its designed for ease of use, and those situations where you can only carry around one lens.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 12:26 am 
I had a long-winded reply that was erased. I used to own a super zoom, and the upgrade to an interchangeable lens system has made a humongous difference in the quality of my photos. The photos i get now are much sharper, have much more depth, more saturation, more detail, require less fixing on the computer, and even poorer exposures are more easily fixed if need be. The PEN cameras make the tradeoff a lot easier since they are so small. Carrying an extra lens isn't nearly as big a deal as with those big DSLRs out there. Besides, I've found that which lens you use depends a lot on your subject or environment, and switching them out is pretty painless.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 11:48 am 
Thanks for the feedback guys. Yes I can see how the zoom lens isn't that sharp after checking out that page with Gordon's review. It it quite clear that something like the EL-P1 would produce better quality photos when using the short zoom and at high ISO, but if I am going to use the zoom quite a bit it seems like I will probably get better IQ from a good compact. The Casio FH100 seem to have very good picture quality and it's a 10x zoom, so I wonder if maybe that would be a better (and cheaper) alternative for me since I do need the zoom.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 11:58 am 
For IQ, a DSLR or PEN will always have better quality images. Always. The PEN zoom will cost more and needs to be changed out, but if image quality is your primary concern, the PEN wins hands down over any compact or super zoom. If cost and convenience are more important, especially convenience, then the Casio is a good choice.

 Post subject: On Second Thought
PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2010 2:01 pm 
I forgot that they already have a 10x zoom available for the PEN cameras! If you buy the body with the 14-150mm ED Zuiko, you get a 10x optical zoom like a superzoom, with far better imagine quality. ... oduct=1481

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