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Monday, 31 January 2011


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Nice. It seems Kirk and I appreciate the same things in Pens. And I also want very much to see what the semi-officially announced "pro-Pen" brings.

I agree that it's a good review. What I found most interesting though was it felt, to me, more like a review of small format M4/3 than of the camera itself. Sure, some detail on the camera, but for many of the comments you could substitute GF1 or E-P2 for E-PL2.

Clearly this does not apply to the camera specific comments around changes from previous models etc.

This strikes me as a good common-sensical review of both the camera's qualities and *why* you'd want to shoot it. However, I shoot the Panasonic variant of the m4/3 and ultimately like the DSLR-style of their GH series better than the ultra-small Panasonic GF1 or Olympus E-PL2. When you put the electronic viewfinder on either the GF1 or the E-PL2, they're not *that* much smaller than the Panasonic GH cameras (which are still very small cameras) with the built-in viewfinder. The GH also has the twistable LCD which I find is great for street shooting, and I wouldn't be without it. Generally, I shoot the GH2, using the GF1, either with or without the EVF, as an alternate or a backup. Also, the GF-1 with the 20mm Panasonic becomes a genuinely jacket-pocketable camera, and the GH2, not so much, unless you've got really big pockets.

I particularly like the fact that the review emphasizes the appropriateness of sensor size for various uses -- that you really don't need a D3x if you're going to use the image only on typical computer monitors. There might be a lot of reasons for choosing a D3x over an m4/3, but generally speaking, monitor display is not one of them.

I'm never good in converting numbers into percentage/sizes, but I think the m4/3 sensor is more like 1/3 smaller than Canon 1.6x APS-C sensors (rather than 20% smaller, as he says in the review), and 40% smaller than Nikon APS-C sensors. I could be wrong.


Looks like the E-PL2 is the one to get.

However, I just ordered from Amazon (with TOP's link) an E-P1 (the original) with 17mm lens and optical viewfinder for $470. (The new faster-focusing firmware is available for the E-P1.)

E-PL2 with 14-42mm kit lens and EVF would be something like $880.

E-PL1 body + Panasonic 20mm pancake + EVF would be $1000; no info on E-PL2 body on Amazon yet. This seems to be Tuck's preferred configuration, and I can certainly see why.

To my way of thinking, these little cameras want pancake primes, not zooms, even collapsible ones.

That E-PL2 w/EVF & 9-18 Oly makes for one versatile, lighweight combo!

Thanks for another great link, Mike, I wasn't aware of his site. The review has practicaly everything I would want to know from a users point of view and is well written and entertaining. I don't get the same sense of the camera from other review sites which seem to be obsessed with high ISO pixel peeping: tell me what it's like 95% of the time and not why I can't shoot publishable evening football action during a power cut.
This was quite timely as I have decided to sell my Sony A900 because it's more camera than I need and there is a wad of money needed for the mundane stuff of life tied up in it; so an Olympus could be on the cards (and another nice film camera, as black and white film is where my profitable endeavours are heading, compounded by the fact that my HP B9180 would be better stripped out and used as a water bath for RA4 processing).
Anyway, apologies for having given far too much information. You're still the best blogger and I appreciate your nods to the other worthy sites,
Bless ya.

Funny, I read the M6 review first and was amused by a couple of things - first, the comments were the same mix of vitriol and irrational love that you see today and, second, one Mike Johnston had posted a response:

'Hey, I thought Kirk did a very nice job with this review, and I've been reviewing cameras since 1988. My experience over the years is that many Leica naysayers aren't speaking from experience...even if they own one, they've never "come to grips with it." Comparing the specs, the features, ease of loading, the shutter noise--even the lenses--it's all beside the point. Macro work? Telephotos? That's not what it's _for_.

If you want to see an example of what it _is_ for, check out John Brownlow's stuff at luminous-landscape.com/auteur.htm .

Personally, I think the Leica is a mechanical photography teacher. I think every photographer--whatever kind of photographer they are--should use a Leica for a year at some point in their lives. And I'm talking really *use* it, too--put the rest of your gear in the closet and shoot 200 rolls with the Leica. I can almost guarantee you'll come out of that year a better photographer than you went in.

It's even cheap. Buy a used Leica, you can use it for a year and sell it for more or less what you paid for it at the end of the year and come out even (believe me on this--I've done it four times ). At worst, you lose a couple of hundred bucks. No big deal.

But all this theoretical talk--heck, it just don't mean a darn thing.

Good review, Kirk. '

The comment even contains the idea repeated in this blog a year or so back that every photographer should use a Leica for a year as a teacher...
Good stuff.

Oh, the pen looks fine too.


I was fortunate enough to participate in a one day portrait/lighting workshop with Kirk. Come across as a friendly approachable guy. In the middle of the workshop I asked what would happen if we moved this light over here a bit instead of saying why it might not work he just moved the lights around and shot again.

I sprung for the EPL2 myself ( I know, I know) It has for me everything the Epl1 was missing.

Better built kit lens with motor for better focus speed. (the old 14-42 feels like it should say Fisher/Price on it. :) New one is a notch better.

Better screen. A welcome upgrade.

1/4000 top shutter speed. A very welcome upgrade. You bump into that old 1/2000 of the EPL1 very quick on a bright day at ISO 200 and a fast lens.

Control wheel to make common adjustments like EV compensation and aperture changes easy.

Better looking in murdered out black for what it's worth.

Interestingly my first thought when I saw that photo was "I hope Fuji's Finepix X100 comes in all black too".

E-PL2 + EVF + Nokton 25mm f/0,95 might be an interesting combination...
50mm équivalent,f/0,95, accurate focusing(you focus where you relly want) AND in-body stabilisation!!!
...And DOF scale!
...Anc very close focusing!!
For not too much money...
IMHO,very,very interesting for average light portraits...

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