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Old Jan 2, 2008, 8:58 AM   #1
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Hi everybody
am planning to buy my first DSLR.What am looking at is something compact and easy to use for everyday use.But it should also have some advanced features that will let me grow as a photographer.Am a good learner and with free time these days i do not want to miss the oppurtunity to unleash the photographer in me thats been raring to go for quite some time now.
I might upgrade later on to something better but as a start i need something that can also be used as a family camera that other family members can also use without much effort.
Dont wanna spend more than $700-800(Including basic lenses)

Over the past one week i have been reading tons of reviews and made my mind on the Olympus:E-510.It has got good reviews everywhere with only issues being autofocus in low light.I have great faith in this site and have been reading about slr's for over an year from here.The olympus review over here is also good but am surprised to see that theres not much user feedback about Olympus:E-510 in the forums.Nikon and cannon have great reputations....may be thats why people dont buy olympus and secondly its been launched recently.

Olympus:E-510 is the only camera with all the three "special fetures"....Image stabilisation,live view and dust control.I know live view is not preffered by pros but it doesnt harm to have an extra feature....and i bet its usefull in some special cases if not in all cases.

Please advice and suggest me better options if any.Advantages and disadvantages for Olympus:E-510 vs Canon Rebel XTi vs Nikon D40X.

thanks
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Old Jan 2, 2008, 3:03 PM   #2
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The Olympus E-510 is a fine camera, and should suit you and your family well.

Yes, Canon and Nikon are the most prominent brands. They have been working on their lenses and cameras for years,have a great selection, and cater to pros. When pros use something, the advanced amateurs are not far behind, so there is a lot of buzz about them, and so they maintain their prominence.

On the other hand, when Olympus went to digital, they abandoned everything they had in film, and so don't have the market momentum that Canon and Nikon have.

The 'Live View' presents some obstacles for conventional dSLRs. The autofocus and autoexposure functions often operate out of the pentaprism (or pentamirror) in the viewfinder. In order for 'Live View' to work, the mirror must be raised out of the way, and so blocks the pentaprism and optical viewfinder. That's why the E-510 can't autofocus when simultaneously using the 'Live View'.

Also, prolonged use of 'Live View' can cause the image sensor to heat up, resulting in thermal noise in the images. In extreme circumstances, the E-510 may even turn itself off until the sensor has cooled down.

While 'Live View' has its advantages, it's clearly not useful as a permanent replacement for the optical viewfinder.

The Olympus is one of the smallest, lightest dSLRs on the market, and by virtue of its smaller image sensor, also has smaller, lighter lenses, for equivalent angles of view,than other dSLRs. But while some of those lenses are very good, they can also be very expensive. And the selection of lenses and accessoriesfor Olympus dSLRs is much smaller than for other brands.

Edit: ... for spelling. [suB][/suB]
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Old Jan 3, 2008, 11:10 PM   #3
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TCav-

Makes a good point. I shoot a lot with an Olympus E-410 which does have "live view." However, in actual day to day usage, I very rarely use it at all.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 4, 2008, 2:03 PM   #4
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Upon rereading your question and my response, I realized that I didn't actually get to my point, which is this: 'Live View' is nice to have, but it's of limited value, so I wouldn't use it as a reason to purchase or not to purchase a particular camera.

Also, if you won't be changing lenses very often (or at all), or you can limit your lens changing to relatively clean environments, dust reduction isn't a 'make or break' feature either.

But Image Stabilization is another story. With Canon or Nikon, you can have it in your lenses, along with its increased size, weight, and cost. Or you can go with Pentax, Sony, or the Olympus E-510, and have it in the camera body, and have it for every lens. To be sure, IS is only of any real value when using longer lenses, but if that's what you want to do, then you should have it, however you happen to have it.

So I think you should consider the Pentax K100D and the Sony A100 along with the Canon XTi, Nikon D40x and Olympus E-510, and don't worry so much about 'Live View' and dust reduction.
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Old Jan 4, 2008, 2:36 PM   #5
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mtclimber wrote:
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TCav-

Makes a good point. I shoot a lot with an Olympus E-410 which does have "live view." However, in actual day to day usage, I very rarely use it at all.

Sarah Joyce
i like the 410 body but isn't it lacking anti shake?
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Old Jan 4, 2008, 3:06 PM   #6
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derfy-

The Olympus E-410 has digital image stabilization, rather than the IS mounted around the imager, that is found in the E-510. I find that it works fairly well. I have attached a sample photo for you.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 4, 2008, 6:28 PM   #7
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The E-410 has what is caller 'Digital Image Stabilization' which is a mix of increasing the shutter speed in order to capture the image faster, while increasing the ISO to correct the exposure. It's the type of 'image stabilization' that is commonly used in some inexpensive P&S digicams and camcorders.
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Old Jan 4, 2008, 7:40 PM   #8
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Yes, indeed, TCav-

You are indeed correct! However, the digital image stabilization does work quite well. The Olympus E-410 is the least expensive of all the DSLR cameras in the marketplace. Perhaps you might want to post a sample photo of your own. It could be from the more expensive Olympus E-510, perhaps, from another DSLR camera,you make the choice. You could post a photo sample of your own that might demonstrate even better photo quality.

In the mean time I don't think that my Olympus E-410 equipped with the Olympus 18-180mm zoom lens is too not really too bad at all. Shall we let the Forum members be the judge?

Please do NOT worry TCav, we are only home until Monday, 01/07, and then I will once again be out of your hair.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Jan 4, 2008, 11:56 PM   #9
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mtclimber wrote:
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... the digital image stabilization does work quite well. ...
I'm sorry you misunderstood my intent. I didn't say it didn't work. I just meant to point out that, while Optical IS and Sensor Shift IS actually stabilize the image on the image sensor, Digital IS instead tries to freeze the image by halving (or maybe quartering)(The E-410 manual isn't clear on the range of the IS capabilities. If you know the specifics, I'd pleased if you'd share them.) the shutter speed, and increasing the ISO to compensate. The result would be the equivalent of 1 (maybe 2) f-stop(s). According to Popular Photography, that is at the lower end of the range of what Optical or Sensor ShiftIS can do.

mtclimber wrote:
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... The Olympus E-410 is the least expensive of all the DSLR cameras in the marketplace.
Yes. Ordinarily, that's true. But Adorama lists the E-410 bodyfor $389, but the Pentax K100D Super for $368 after rebate. This rebate offer is good through the end of January. Then, the Olympus E-410 will, no doubt, be the least expensive dSLR.

mtclimber wrote:
Quote:
Perhaps you might want to post a sample photo of your own. It could be from the more expensive Olympus E-510, perhaps, from another DSLR camera,you make the choice. You could post a photo sample of your own that might demonstrate even better photo quality.
I did not intend this to be a shoot out, and would not post any of my photos with the intention of trying to show that they are better than anybody else's.

mtclimber wrote:
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In the mean time I don't think that my Olympus E-410 equipped with the Olympus 18-180mm zoom lens is too not really too bad at all.
Without question.

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Please do NOT worry TCav, we are only home until Monday, 01/07, and then I will once again be out of your hair.
Ipresume you'll be off globe-trotting, teaching photography again. Enjoy your trip.
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Old Jan 5, 2008, 4:25 AM   #10
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I'm sorry Sarah,

I'm afraid I don't see how the "digital image stabilization" on the 410 is image stabilization at all.

It doesn't move the sensor, it doesn't move any element in the lenses. It doesn't even try to do fancy fuzzy logic by cropping the image and comparing multiple frames in quick succession like some of the video cameras can.

It simply adjusts the ISO and shutter speed according to the light reported by the meter. That is NOT image stabilization, that is simply an Auto exposure mode taking into account 3 variables. Nikon and Canon both do the same thing (within limits) in their Auto modes. So perhaps we could say that they have "digital image stabilization" too.

Probably the only person on the forums with lots of entry-level cameras is you. So here is a challenge for you. Take a photo with the 410, check the exif data and then take the same parameters and apply them in Manual mode to one of your other SLR cameras and take the same picture.

If the results from the 410 display any clear advantage due to its "digital stabilization" I shall happily eat a large helping of humble pie.

I frankly don't see how it could, and actually think Olympus are skirting very close to the edge of the law in the UK. Basically they are just lying about the 410 being stabilized.

That is not to say that it is not a very nice camera however. It is a lovely little camera and very good value for money.




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