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Old May 14, 2009, 8:33 PM   #1
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Default A review of the E-1 Camera

Greg's recent posting of horse racing images taken using the E-1 has again intrigued me to evaluate this venerable old warhorse(pun intended).
While digging around, I found this second opinion review of the E-1 by Sean Reid, a photographer whose reviews and opinions often appear at Luminous Landscape.

Yeah, it's dated, as is the camera, but just because the E-1 has been replaced by more feature rich DSLRs packing more MPs, that doesn't suddenly make the E-1 a lousy camera. The quality of the output is as good today as when first released (see Greg's photos).

Anyways, here's the link:

http://www.luminous-landscape.com/re...s/e1-2nd.shtml

This is a worthwhile read since the author touches on a wide range of issues and also includes input from other professional photogs, a lot of information on high ISO performance and how it is measured as well as some surprising evaluations of the 14-54mm lens.

Zig
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Old May 14, 2009, 9:43 PM   #2
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hi zig. im still havent gotten interested enough to replace my e1/e500. both still chugging away. still favoring my rokkor lenses.

havent posted in a long time because of issues with zone alarm. couldnt see pics & all kinds of issues with this site. i'd look in, but had to jump thru hoops to post. dumped ZA today for a new firewall - comodo. everything seems to work now. new site format seems friendlier.

downloaded CS 8 today & will install soon. that will be interesting. been using CS 2 since its release. getting very lazy in my old age.

Last edited by gwillys; May 14, 2009 at 9:49 PM.
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Old May 14, 2009, 10:41 PM   #3
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Hi Gwillys,

I thought you'd fallen off the face of the planet!

Glad to see that you've overcome the technical difficulties and am looking forward to seeing more of your results with those Rokkor lenses on the E-1.


PS: been to the Keys lately? I thought of you this year when I stopped in at the noname in Big Pine. what used to be a pretty good watering hole has turned into a tourist mecca. I think they sell more T-shirts now than chili and beer.
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Old May 15, 2009, 5:34 AM   #4
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big pine, the place i loved, hasnt existed for many years. i left the keys in 85, pissed over the changes. never went back. so sad. left florida in 98. got tired of running from the developers. florida's ruined. south georgia's pretty nice though. the best years of my life were on big pine key. i was lucky to have lived there back then.
glad to see you guys still carrying on here. i've been busy with the property here, not much photoging. set up some stratigically placed bird feeders this spring and when i get off my butt, gonna try my hand at some bird shots. hummingbirds to, if they ever show up
be interesting to see what i can manage from a rokkor 300mm & leica 350mm. and maybe the zeiss 85 1.4 for hummingbirds.

Last edited by gwillys; May 15, 2009 at 7:01 AM.
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Old May 15, 2009, 10:06 AM   #5
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When I first put the E520 down and pick up the E1, the back LCD looks like it's about a half inch in size, but once you are out and shooting with it, it's no issue.

The big buffer is a huge difference maker when shooting with this camera. Unless you shoot a 12 image or more RAW burst, the camera never slows you down shooting. Review screens are a little archaic compared to what you can toggle through on the new cameras, but several areas of the E1 are still hard to beat when comparing to the consumer line. The CF card compartment is a vault, you can take this camera into a church and shoot from the rear without bothering anyone due to the shutter being so darn quiet, and the finder is wonderful. Also, when I use the E1 with either my FL50 or FL50R flash, when I press the LCD light button on the camera, both the camera and flash LCD's light for ease of viewing...nice touch.

Shortly after buying mine, I picked up the optional finder screen with the etched gridlines and have never gone back to the original screen. I don't recall ever having to straighten a shot I have taken with the E1.

I also have the accessory grip that makes shooting verticals so darn easy, but it's going to be of limited use in the coming years due to no new batteries being available for it. Olympus no longer makes them and as far as I know, there are no new ones being made by third-party companies. They should have made this to use two BLM-1's like the new models do today and many other makers always have.

The new SWD lenses work really well on the E1 and software development has made the higher ISO settings more useful then they were 2-3 years ago. The old 50-200 f2.8-3.5 would vignette quite a bit wide open and I always had shading compensation turned on to fix it, or corrected RAW files in Photoshop, but the new SWD version does not vignette at any aperture that I can see at all. I've gone back and reworked several RAW high ISO files I shot with the E1 back in 2006 and 2007, processing them in the newest versions of Adobe Camera RAW and using Noiseware Professional on the resulting conversions with wonderful results from ISO 800 up.

I never used ISO 3200 much, but here's one shot where I did from back in 2007. This is a friend's granddaughter at a high school volleyball game. I had loaned him my 50-200 to try on his E500, so I shot this using his 40-150 f3.5-4.5 Zuiko. I processd this just recently in ACR, Photoshop CS4 and applied Noiseware Professional to clean up the noise..



And these are ISO 800 shots using the 50-200. Had I known I'd be doing this with them in 2009, I might have used ISO 1600 or even 3200 to stop the action better!







Another feature I consider nice....most converted JPEG's from RAW wind up being 2.5-4MP, meaning extremely fast uploading to my website!

Last edited by Greg Chappell; May 15, 2009 at 1:58 PM.
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Old May 15, 2009, 4:40 PM   #6
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Hey Greg,
Just caught your overview of the E-1. Thanks for taking the time to post your comments.

As stated many times, I've had a notion to pick up an E-1. Among other reasons, I've wanted to have a camera on board my boat when I go out that is rugged and impervious to the elements. You see a lot of interesting and unique sites out on the ocean. I'm a bit reticent about taking the E-30 out n the salt. For Christmas, my kids got me a waterproof Olympus P&S. The output was, in a word, awful. I took it back to the store for a refund a few days later.



Zig





As for output, as it relates to noise and Hi ISO, with all the capabilities of graphics editing software, that doesn't seem to be as big an issue
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Old May 15, 2009, 4:44 PM   #7
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Hi Zig

That review by Sean Reid over at LL was one of the main reasons why I bought an E1 .. its all I needed to know that the E1 was my kind of camera. Its still a fine read .. even after the 10 time!

Cheers

Harj

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