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Old Apr 8, 2009, 10:18 AM   #21
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mr.sneezy wrote:
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Well I have had a play with both in a shop. I didn't find the view finder in the E-520 too small, and it only looks smaller than the A300's when you swap from one to the other to compare.
They're almost the same size (the Sony A300's viewfinder is only a tiny bit larger than the one in the E-520). The A200 viewfinder is larger (no live view). With the Sony A300 and A350 models, Sony installed a separate Live View sensor in the viewfinder housing (so that you can flick a switch to Live View, with the LCD seeing the same image that would normally be sent to the optical viewfinder). Because of their design, the A300 and A350 models have a smaller optical viewfinder compared to to the A200 (the A300 and A350 viewfinders are roughly the same size as the viewfinders in the entry level Olympus models).

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I forgot to try live view speed on the A300.
It's the same speed as when you're using the optical viewfinder, thanks to it's design with a separate Live View sensor in the viewfinder housing. It's still using a fast phase detect Autofocus via the camera's dedicated 9 point AF Sensor assembly when in Live View mode.

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The A300 kit lens seemed light and plasticy to me...
It's a very inexpensive lens. So, yes, it's a light and plasticky lens. You can't expect an all metal lens barrel, pro quality optics, etc., in a zoom lens that they bundle with an entry level kit. ;-)

The A300 is only available in a kit including a lens (at least in the U.S.). If you look at the A350, it's only a $100 add if you get the kit, versus the camera body only. You're not going to find a better quality new zoom lens starting out at 18mm for any less than that.

They probably don't sell many of them at the retail price. It's not a bad lens from a color/contrast perspective, and it handles flare better than I expected from a budget lens.

I tend to use a Minolta 24-85mm f/3.5-4.5 AF lens as a walk around lens most of the time, going to a wider Tamron SP 20-40mm f2.7-3.5 AF lens if 24mm isn't wide enough. But, I use the kit lens from time to time, too. You've got lots of choices in lenses (both new and used).

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...with little firmness to the zoom action by comparison.
That Zuiko lens on the E-520 uses a "focus by wire" focus system (it's not a mechanically linked zoom ring like you'll find in AF Zoom lenses from other manufacturers like Nikon, Canon, Pentax, Minolta, Sony, etc.). Instead, this zoom system uses the focus motor in the lens to drive the focal length changes when you rotate the zoom ring.
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Old Apr 8, 2009, 7:56 PM   #22
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JimC wrote:
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That Zuiko lens on the E-520 uses a "focus by wire" focus system (it's not a mechanically linked zoom ring like you'll find in AF Zoom lenses from other manufacturers like Nikon, Canon, Pentax, Minolta, Sony, etc.). Instead, this zoom system uses the focus motor in the lens to drive the focal length changes when you rotate the zoom ring.
Jim, are you sure??

I have an E-510, and the lens has just a standard mechanical zoom, and I thought they were the same!!! Anyway, I can check that in a camera shop!!!

The Olympus kit lens (14-45mm) is, optically,one of the best kit lenses available.
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Old Apr 8, 2009, 8:21 PM   #23
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No. My bad. I was thinking about the focus ring, not the zoom ring (it's a focus by wire system, not a zoom by wire system). Most lenses use a mechanically linked focus ring instead.



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Old Apr 11, 2009, 9:46 AM   #24
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I bought the Olympus E-520. Got the right price, $240 less than the Sony. Only one lens though, but I wanted to test a few lens lengths before I buy the second one.

Shot 450 frames over the last two days. Works very well, I even used live view once or twice.

One of my favorite shots of many over the weekend attached.

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Old Apr 12, 2009, 9:22 AM   #25
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Congrats on the new camera. It's well liked by Olympus owners, and it looks like you're off to a good start with it.

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