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Wednesday, 29 May 2019


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Three wrongs don't make a right...

Gets more interesting when you add in the Sony A9/A7rIII.

I will "never" get an E-M1x (but of course never say never). However, this makes sense. The E-M1x is built for speed. With the smallest sensor, it can pump out more data. The GFX-100 is for the highest resolution but at a much smaller pace. What this means to me is that this is about the maximum size camera makers would make their cameras, regardless which bucket they want their "top line" camera to be placed in.

Yup, early reviewers have said that the GFX 100 body is basically the bulk of a full-size pro dslr. (That Oly is such a poser.). What’s not shown in this illustration is the difference in size between GFX lenses (and all medium-format lenses) and even full-frame lenses. The diameters are necessarily much larger, as you would expect.

Want another interesting visual comparison? How about a GFX 50S sensor (same size as the GFX 100) compared to a Phase One IQ160 (60 MP) medium-format back’s full-645-frame sensor?

Fujifilm GFX 50S -vs- Phase One IQ160

I honestly don't get the Olympus. I would have thought that the small sensor would allow them to make a smaller camera,all else being equal.(Maybe all else isn't equal--that's why I read the expert's blog!)

"Disproportionate," as Mr. Chips would have surely observed.

Goldilocks chose...

It gets funny when the lenses are attached - Olympus with Panasonic 35-100/2.8 lens continues to be the smallest, but this time with a decent margin.
On the other hand, I do get the direction Olympus engineers were thinking - EM1X is the body for big and adapted FourThirds lenses. I've been using "big" FourThirds Zuiko 50-200/2.8-3.5 on Panasonic GX7, it wasn't a pretty sight, GX7 was just too small for such a big lens, EM1X would be just about right. And there are other, bigger lenses out there. What I don't get is why is there no top-plate LCD on it, like the one on D5 and GFX100.
There are smaller bodies for smaller lenses, diversification is the name of the game.

It looks like the Nikon is in the "sweet spot". Is it?

Things that makes the Nikon stand out:
- oldest camera;
- longest flange distance;
- wrong aspect ratio;
- no EVF;
- no IBIS;
- no tilt screen;
- no SD card slots;
- heaviest camera;
- lowest pixel density;
- highest cost per pixel.

If you had 12 thousand dollars to spend on these cameras, would you go for two Nikons or pick up one Olympus and one Fujifilm?

So the hand and finger size, dexterity and strength of the people these cameras are designed for - these people's need to manipulate controls, and hold them steady even with a big lens mounted, and to operate them in either portrait or landscape - may be the same?

There's almost no variation in the physical forms of a power tool, such as a hammer drill or a circular saw - which is the same object class these can be said to belong to (grin).

Size is never really the problem it is increasingly made out to be. Weight, to some extent, yes, but the weight of the body is a relatively small part of a system. Balance and comfortable day long holding are much more important. I've seen Nikon carefully sculpt the pro bodies from cameras which would leave the hand aching before the end of the day to bodies which despite being heavier in some cases were completely comfortable.

What's missing is the price beneath each camera.
Olympus - $3,000 US
Nikon - $6,500 US
Fuji - $10,000 US

Yes I rounded up to a whole dollar amount. When it comes to price all things are definitely not equal.

The hole in the middle gets larger when you look from left to right.

The Fuji is the shortest, as you can pop off that EVF. Cameras need to feel comfortable in the hand, so not surprising that there is similarity. People forget that.
The Olympus has a market and not sure why most sports photographers haven't picked it up yet. Olympus biggest problem is advertising. The depth of field advantage really helps. If you want better files the Fuji is the answer.

I added my current camera, a Pentax K-3 to get a better idea on the sixe, those things are huge! I am a big guy, but I would need a cart to haul them around for any length of time.

Jim Fellows

FWIW, if you re-sort these three cameras based on weight, from lightest to heaviest, then the order would be Olympus, Fujifilm, and Nikon. That's not too surprising since the Nikon D5 has the added weight of a solid glass prism, mirror, and mirror mechanism. The D5 weighs 3.1 lbs (1415 g) while the Olympus OM-D EM1X weighs 2.19 lbs (997 g) with batteries and cards. By my calculations that's about a third less.

@Gary - well on the Oly, the bottom grip is removable making the core unit quite compact. Even with the extra battery pack it is quite light, compared to my D3.

But honestly, size is dictated by the machine's use as a tool, isn't it? That is: it has to be made to be used by actual human hands, and the buttons must be pressed by actual human fingers. That's why shovels, saws, and flatware don't change in size all that much, no matter the progress in materials science. (Hey, it may be titanium, but it still has to spear an endive . . . that sort of thing.) Doesn't seem to me like you can change that at all, until we all get our cyborg implants, of course.

For me, this distills down to the simple fact that these are all made for human hands and optimized for working professionals who expect a certain number of controls to be readily available, distinguishable by feel and placed where fingertips might land while holding the whole contraption—without the need to dive into menus. As Ken mentioned, the whole story is told when you add lenses. Until there is a market for other sentient beings with different appendages, it seems likely that there will be much similarity among these products unless a disruptor hits on a better formula and successfully markets it. The original CoolPix comes to mind but it never seemed to have evolved.

The size comparison is interesting. However, I do think that each one of these cameras to some degree is being made for different types of photography. As for the Sony comparison, I'm sure it's a great camera but I seriously doubt it's built to the same level of ruggedness that the Nikon or Fuji is. Fittingly, its price is significantly less. The Nikon is a real professional camera in that it is designed to be used for years without needing to upgrade every year (and Sony definitely replaces there cameras faster than any camera company I've ever seen). I will assume the same for the Fuji. I'm not a professional photographer but I am friends with a few people who do pay their mortgage and kids tuition with their cameras. My observation is they rarely change their cameras or brands because they want to know exactly what they will get when they press the shutter release. Additionally they want the cameras built to last for years. They are also more concerned with lenses than camera bodies. Finally they want to know if their camera breaks how quickly and easily can it be repaired and what loaner services are available. One of them is purchasing the GFX 100 because according to her it's a quantum leap in terms of what a camera in certain price range is capable of. She also told me she has spoken with Fuji's Pro Services USA and feels comfortable that they will be able to provide what she is looking for. So yes I think this size comparison is interesting. However, I don't think adding a Sony to this would be any different than adding a Fuji XT to this comparison. The Fuji XT and Sony's are great cameras and you can do wonderful things with them. I have a Fuji X Pro and X100. I would never think they are the same as a D5. The Nikon and I will assume the GFX 100 are different levels of cameras altogether. It's not just the sensor. That's like saying Tri-X in a Yashica 35 Electro GSN is the same as Tri-x in a Leica M4 with a 50mm or 35mm Summicron. (And I have a fully restored Electro which I adore and use frequently). I have no idea on the Olympus. Oympus does make very good cameras though. I must admit Fuji really put a lot of camera in that body. They really are thinking outside the box in ways other camera companies aren't. My guess is Canon and Nikon are more concerned about them than they are about Sony.


All three are specialist cameras, in which some things are being given up (in each case) in order to achieve the specialist use. The OLY and D5 are top line ruggedized photojournalist cameras, the Fuji a studio/tripod camera. The only interesting conversation between them would be the Oly vs. the D5 -- do journalists really need FF cameras? My answer is 'no.' In fact, most PJs could get along just fine with a couple of Sony RX10s. Or even RX100s. The only photos they'd ever miss would be at the unlikely extreme margins.

#Strawman A straw man is a common form of argument and is an informal fallacy based on giving the impression of refuting an opponent's argument, while actually refuting an argument that was not presented by that opponent.

There's NO rational for comparing two high fps Pro Sports camera with a low fps Landscape camera. The large size of the sports-shooters is due to them needing a large grip for long-lenses.

Geesh (Gee, STUFF happens), ain't it a little early in the day for this kind of STUFF to happen? 8-0

You forgot to add lenses.

Another size comparison https://bit.ly/2ELuOQh An old Barnack Leica compared to a new Leica CL (1.5 crop). With an adapter you can use Max Berek designed LTM lenses—how cool is that.

Yep, I'll keep my perfect camera a little longer then.

I have to agree that this comparison is a bit weird; two speed-demon cameras against a resolution champ. The Leica M4 does not compete against a 4x5 monorail camera!

Actually what's interesting is how close to the same size these vastly different cameras are.

Had lunch with two other photographers yesterday. One, like me, is more art focused (no pun intended), the other does a lot of photo-journalistic style work.

The new Fuji came up in conversation. I mean, you know, three photographers, after talking about (and dissing) a couple of other photographers they will always turn to gear discussions.

My friend who does more art/conceptual based work was really excited about the new Fuji. Not because he was going to buy one, but because he wanted to get the 50 megapixel version, and the new one, which all the local weekend photographers, with their must have the best there is attitude to take photo's of their cats, dogs, kids, etc. with will be soon selling their old model Fuji's. And as there will be quite a few of them trading up and offloading it will push the price down.

In fact it already has.

I carry a Lumix G9, and I admit it is not much smaller than the Canon 7d I used to carry. However, I also carry the Lumix 8-18, 12-35, 35-100, all f2.8, the Olympus 60 mm macro, and the 100-300. All of this fits in a small back pack which weighs about 15 lbs packed. I shoot mostly landscapes and macro so I appreciate the greater depth of field these lenses give me on the smaller format. I find the quality is excellent up to 30 x 40 prints with good technique as long as you view them as they are intended. How about a size and weight comparison with equivalent focal range between the three systems? The reason I switched from the Canon APS-C was weight - I had less range at 40+ pounds! I am an amateur photographer and I do this for fun. I realized carrying 40 pounds was not fun anymore. Now I am in M4/3 heaven.

Is this a bit like the discussions on car forums about the merits of Ferraris vs Lamborghinis or Pagnanis by people who have no real use for any of them and couldn't afford or justify the price anyway?
Where I live (Santa Monica) I see them being driven around on the street all the time by people who have no use for them other than as posers and who would be scared #$%^&*() if they really got to see how much performance they have (I've had students like that when I instructed on track days!)

Just sayin'

One of the great things about TOP is the diversity of comments.
More diverse than the available cameras.
( comments = Available cameras squared maybe? )

If I go on a photo trip, say Yellowstone in winter or the Antarctic, I take two or more Nikons and big ol' zooms.
If I go to photograph grandchildren or similar I take a pocket camera like a GX7 and 20mm Panny.

I will not be buying any of these, but I welcome their availability.

The Olympus makes sense as it’s lighter and has “equivalent “ lenses that are smaller and lighter. Extra DoF and great ibis is a bonus for wildlife and sports. I’d buy the Oly for telephoto and the Fuji for wide. Maybe an xe3 and a 35 mm for normal. :-)

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