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Old Dec 15, 2009, 1:17 PM   #1
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Default Replacement for Fuji F11: Four Thirds camera?

I have a Fuji F11. Works ok, but has no image stabilization and doesn't do well without flash, but flash is overwhelming when used. Also using the video more, but the video on the Fuji is marginal at best.

Assuming budget of $1000 or so, what I need which I do not have in the Fuji are:
- Image stabilization
- Adjustable flash level
- Good low light photo capability
- High quality video (not necessarily HD), with image stabilization
- Fast speed (both on, and between shots)
- Smaller size, DSLR is too large

I am an amateur. I know how to use SP, AP, EC, and manual mode on my camera, but know nothing about manual focus or interchangeable lenses. Whatever I get MUST have a "full auto" mode for my wife. I will fiddle with the menus, but am unlikely to change lenses, I do not plan to take this to the next level.

Common problems I have are inside the house with marginal light (dinner, pumpkin carving, restaurant, etc). Flash is too bright, no flash is blurry. Last weekend taking Karate pictures, the pictures were either blurry, washed out, or grainy.

I was considering the Olympus EP1 (or the new EP2) 4/3rds cameras simply because it seems the better the camera, the better the software, lens, and better photo taking capabilities, even if I do not ever use them all. If I am wrong, please steer me right, maybe a good quality P+S is more what I need. Please tell me what you may suggest.

I have no problems currently with outdoors, action, color fringing, image size, or minimal (3x now) zoom.

Edit: Added smaller size as requirement. DSLR is just too big. I need to put the camera in a belt mounted case for travel.

Last edited by pnut; Dec 15, 2009 at 1:56 PM.
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 1:29 PM   #2
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pnut-

Welcome to the Forum. We're pleased that you dropped by.

The Olympus EP-1 or EP-2 are a good choice, if being physically small is a priority in your camera selection process. You could save some money by going to the normal 4/3 platform: cameras like the Olympus E-620 are not physically much larger than the Olympus EP-1 or EP-2 cameras, and offer a very good feature set as well as some excellent lenses for a smaller investment.

Have a great day and a Merry Christmas.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 1:58 PM   #3
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pnut-

Welcome to the Forum. We're pleased that you dropped by.

The Olympus EP-1 or EP-2 are a good choice, if being physically small is a priority in your camera selection process. You could save some money by going to the normal 4/3 platform: cameras like the Olympus E-620 are not physically much larger than the Olympus EP-1 or EP-2 cameras, and offer a very good feature set as well as some excellent lenses for a smaller investment.

Have a great day and a Merry Christmas.

Sarah Joyce
Is the Olympus not a normal 4/3 camera? In what way?

Why would the Olympus be more expensive than any other 4/3 camera?

Do you think a 4/3 may be more than what I would use/need?

Thank you for the quick response.
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 2:13 PM   #4
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pnut-

All you have to do is to go to pricing websites like www.pricegrabber.com to see the large price difference between the Olympus EP-1/EP-2 as compared to the Olympus E-620 cameras.

Generally speaking, the m4/3 format cameras are priced somewhat higher in price than the standard 4/3 format cameras.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 2:38 PM   #5
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pnut-

All you have to do is to go to pricing websites like www.pricegrabber.com to see the large price difference between the Olympus EP-1/EP-2 as compared to the Olympus E-620 cameras.

Generally speaking, the m4/3 format cameras are priced somewhat higher in price than the standard 4/3 format cameras.

Sarah Joyce
Edit: I see now. The E620 appears too large for my needs, I would much rather spend the extra money for the larger sensor, but without having the bulk of the full DSLR. I never use the viewfinder, I always use the screen.

Last edited by pnut; Dec 15, 2009 at 2:41 PM.
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 3:28 PM   #6
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pnut-

Therefore your choice of the Olympus EP-1/EP-2 is a goodone.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 9:46 PM   #7
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pnut-

Therefore your choice of the Olympus EP-1/EP-2 is a goodone.

Sarah Joyce
You seem to know your cameras well, thank you.

Can you tell me, is a 4/3 overkill for my needs, or might there be a decent P+S that may also suit my needs?

I ask because I know 4/3 would be the best, but I wonder if there is anything more I am going to get out of the 4/3 that I would not get out of a nice P+S?

Let me ask another way - What are the benefits of a 4/3 (EP-1 for example) versus a good quality recommended P+S? The only one thing I have seen on the EP-1 is that it can take 3 instant photos at 3 different exposures, and put the best parts of each together, all in one photo.

Here is a perfect example of what I am looking to improve (partly) with a better camera. I took maybe 50 pics last Saturday and 90% of them look like this. I am not totally uneducated with how to use what I have either. Sorry about the object in the foreground, it was the first pic I grabbed, they are all about the same irrelevant of that.

Last edited by pnut; Dec 15, 2009 at 9:54 PM.
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 10:03 PM   #8
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what about the pannie G1 good prices now do you need video capability.
I do need video quality for certain. That is a big driving factor for me.

What about the Lumix DMC-GF1?
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Old Dec 15, 2009, 10:40 PM   #9
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pnut-

Well, here are couple of the best P+S alternatives: the Canon G-11 and the Panasonic LX-3. At $449 for the G-11, you are almost to the price of an entry level DSLR, but albeit, in a much more compact format, ala the Olympus EP-1/EP-2.

At around $400, the LX-3 is up there in price as well. The key, at least to me is adding an external flash to your P+S. By controlling your light more effectively you will be able to produce photos that effective meet the quality test.

Consider this: imagine your attached sample photo. Had that photo been more properly, and effectively lighted, the end image would have been much more effective and would display some real image quality.

I tried the G-11 which is the only P+S that can produce quality ISO 1600 and ISO 3200 images. The biggest thing that I missed was the ability to change lenses and perspective. So, while I do own m4/3 equipment, I do most of my work with DSLR cameras.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Dec 16, 2009, 9:01 AM   #10
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The G11 looks a bit bulky to me, I like the LX3 quite a bit. It is top on my list now. I see it has adjustable flash level, and has image stabilization, with no doubt far far better software and lens than my Fuji.

So at this point, LX3 is in the lead, with G11 and EP-1 off the list.


Are their other P+S's which will offer better low light performance, image stabilization, or better video (all together in one package)? Don't get me wrong, I like the LX3's specs, but just considering all the best options.


Is the Leica D-Lux 4 any better than the Pan LX3?

Last edited by pnut; Dec 16, 2009 at 9:12 AM.
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