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Old Jul 23, 2006, 8:32 PM   #1
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Hi all,

I'm currently trying to decide which Olympus to purchase. I take pictures in abandonments, so the conditions are low light and dusty.(the dusty part oweing to whyI want an Oly).I'm a 1st time DSLR buyer.

Which of these cameras would get the best pictures under these conditions? I've heard that the E330 is better for noise, but I'd likely only be shooting at ISO 200 max, as I prefer to keep the shutter open for longer rather than increase the ISO.

Also, do any of these models have noise reduction systems built in?

Thanks in advance for any advice! :|
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Old Jul 23, 2006, 10:06 PM   #2
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At ISO 200, noise reduction is a non-issue. Images taken at even ISO 400 are as clean as most any DSLR you can own, so you don't need to use noise performance as a factor if you plan to stay at ISO 200 or lower. It's at higher ISO's where the E-330 has marginal better performance. All three have noise reduction systems built in, but don't use them at ISO 200- it's unnecessary and slows overalloperation down.

All three also have the dust cleaning sensor, but the E-1 alone is sealed with gasketsagainst all elements WHEN USED WITH WEATHER SEALED LENSES. I emphasize this as the "kit" lenses are not among those that are weather sealed. The E-1 is the oldest but most competent in inclement weather when used with no protection. If you buy either "kit", E-500 or E-300, your better off being careful in very dusty conditions as it will possiblyget into nooks and crannies.

Go to the Olympus website and read up on the lenses. You'll see which ones are weather sealed and, when used with the E-1, can be used in most any weather situation.


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Old Jul 23, 2006, 11:30 PM   #3
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Thanks bud! Another question though. Is the E1 likely to be better than the 330 or 500? I know it's a pro model, but I'm wondering if the older components can still do a better job than the newer ones.
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Old Jul 23, 2006, 11:37 PM   #4
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Quote:
Is the E1 likely to be better than the 330 or 500? I know it's a pro model, but I'm wondering if the older components can still do a better job than the newer ones.
Does a 2-seater sports car do a better job than a mini-van?

The question is, better at what?
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Old Jul 24, 2006, 12:00 AM   #5
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Pickwick wrote:
Quote:
Thanks bud! Another question though. Is the E1 likely to be better than the 330 or 500? I know it's a pro model, but I'm wondering if the older components can still do a better job than the newer ones.
The short answer is, possiblyyes to both questions.

There are things definitely worth buying the newer models for, with the biggest being resolution. 8 megapixels is more resolution than 5. If you're planning to print bigger than, say, 11x14, and if you plan to do any major cropping of the original image, resolution could be a big deal. The E-500 and E-330 are newer in terms of technology, so the higher ISO performance is more mature, BUT ISO 800 with the E-1 is available without having to turn on ISO expansion, meaning that setting with the E-1 is native,achieved without having to introduce any type of computer processing unlike the E-500 or E-330and I find ISO 800 shots with the E-1 to be very good, so you really need to jump up to ISO 1600, at least for me, before I start to see any newer model performing better.

If 5 megapixels are enough, there are many reasons why the E-1 might be a better option, including a built-in 128MB memory- you have up to a 12 image buffer, meaning you'll probably never get stopped waiting for the camera to process an image before you can continue shooting. If you want to download directly from the camera the E-1 has both USB 2.0 and firewire connections the other bodies don't have. The E-1 has a traditional sync cord socket for using with studio-type lights. The viewfinder is 100% accurate, meaning what you see in the viewfinder is exactly what the sensor is recording. With the other bodies there is a small amount you don't see in the viewfinder. The E-1's finder screen can be user replaced with a dedicated screen with vertical and horizontally etched lines, making composition and keeping the camera level easier.

There's nothing lacking in terms of image quality or operational speed with an E-1. You just need to decide what features are more important for what you want to do.
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 9:14 PM   #6
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I'm an E-1 owner (and the price of that model has certainly come down) but won't try to steer youtowards onesimply because of that. Features are the key. Look at the standout points for each model:

E-330: Live view...if you have needfor this feature it's the only choice. Odd-angle shooting or underwater-housing use would be two such situations.

E-500: Scene modes...the E-500 has some 15 pre-programmed modes for various types of shooting (i.e. beach, fireworks, landscape, etc.) It allows creative simplicity.

E-1: Durability...built like a tank, weather-sealed and lots of accessories (power grip, focus screens, etc.). No scene modes so it's a good learning tool. Note: no built in flash either, so you'll have to add on an external unit. Bigger, brighter viewfinder that the E-500, too.

Ask yourself what's important. Of course, the dust-buster on all models is the Olympus ace-in-the-hole.




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Old Aug 2, 2006, 12:38 PM   #7
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I used both the E-1 and the E-500, I decided on the E-500. Other than E-1 superior construction I don't think there was any difference in the picture quality such as natural color reproduction, WB... I like the fact it has 8MP I can often zoom in on some photos to see some remarkable detail... hidden reflections etc.

style="BACKGROUND-COLOR: #000000"Other than that the bigest difference is the lenses! After all its your eye to the camera, I would dish out more for the lense and that will make the biggest difference.
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Old Aug 4, 2006, 3:38 PM   #8
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I agree. Save your money on the E-1. It's a beautiful camera... oh man is it nice. BUT it's getting a bit old and will be updated soon with more resolution I'm sure. I own an e330 which is .5MP less than the 500 and has live view. Here's why I got the live view one:

I shoot a lot of night photography and low-light photography and if you are somewhere where tripods are not aloud (there are more places than you might think!) or if you just dont' have one then you need to find a surface to set your camera on or a wall to wedge it against. I find very often the ability to use live view means you dont' have to find away to fit your head into the viewfinder through sometimes crazy obstacles. Also, it's great for photos taken from close to ground level shooting up to exaggerate building heights, etc. It saves you having to lie on the ground to look through your tripod. I was out with a friend shooting the CN tower and skydome the other night and we each had our tripods as low as they coudl go and he was lying on the ground with his 20D and I was standing by my E-330 with the live-viewfinder flipped out, set to apature preview mode. My shot came out better in the end because i was able to compose it more easily. He's a great photographer so in this case it came down to the tools at hand.

Buy a 500 if you don't need this feature. It is a bit cheaper and it's a fantastic camera with the same technology. The noise thing I don't buy. These are noisy cameras but in low light flip on noise-reduction and they'll do quite well.

-sL
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Old Aug 5, 2006, 1:35 AM   #9
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Quote:
Also, do any of these models have noise reduction systems built in?
You won't need NR for ISO 200, no, but you may need it for long exposures, particularly with the E-330, which has a habit of getting hot pixels when used in mode B. The E-500 and E-330 both have NR (dark frame subtraction) modes for long (5> seconds) exposures that eliminate the problem with hot pixels in those cases.

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Old Aug 5, 2006, 4:49 PM   #10
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Thanks everyone, some very good insights!
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