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February 21, 2011
Posted in reviews

Olympus XZ-1 reviews

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Photographyhappenings reviewed the new Olympus XZ-1: “If you are comparing to the Panasonic LX-5 or Canon S95, the Olympus XZ-1 will be a good choice if lens specification is your key consideration. The Olympus delivers strong performance over the competitors in good light and moderate distance, but fails to shine in poorer light condition and closer to infinity.

But there are more testes: First look at Neutralday. Olympus XZ-1 Camera Studio Sample Photos (Photographyreview). Olympus XZ-1 Photo Gallery at letsgodigital.

A 43rumors reader sent has his first hand impression with the Olympus XZ-1 (Image samples at Picasaweb):

I’ve had my XZ-1 for a few days now and I thought I would summarise my thoughts.

Plus points.
1) The image quality is excellent. Sharp everywhere. Certainly better than I need. Portraits look very nice at 112mm equiv with very good DOF for a compact.
This is a major point for me. Nice portraits from a compact. Who knew?
2) The menu is a lot simpler than an
E-PL1. Less is more.
3) The controls work well and are quick to learn. I had it 3 days before I even bothered to look at the manual and that was only curiosity.
4) The performance is good. Focusing seems faster and better in practice than the E-PL1. Especially in poor light.
Thank heavens for the AF lamp.
5) The image stabilisation works very well. But then I don’t drink much coffee. :)

Minus
1) Auto ISO is plain STUPID. It will happily let you take shots at 1/10 second and ISO 200 rather than raise the ISO. Result? On Auto ISO you get a LOT of motion blurred subjects.
This would be the first thing I would fix if it were my design. It’s such a dumb mistake.
2) When you change mode with the dial, a message comes on screen to tell you what new mode you are in and stays there FAR TOO LONG. Irritating.
3) The lens cap is a bit of a bore.
4) YOU MUST use the strap. The front is slippery with no grip. I’ve put little grippy pads on mine.
5) Be nice to be able to assign AEL to the Movie button, or a LONG press of OK. But you can work around it.

I don’t think I’ll be using the E-PL1 much now I have the XZ-1.
Maybe I should sell it and save the money for a new toy when it FINALLY happens.

RR

Direct product XZ-1 preorder pages at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay.

February 19, 2011
Posted in reviews

Panasonic GH2 Revisited at luminous Landscape

There is a new article about the GH2 written by Luminous Landscape (Click here). I am going to post only a few key points of his review but I higly recomment to read the full text!

Video: “Let it be enough to say that with a fast lens (for shallow DOF) it is to my mind the best video capable DSLR type camera on the market.
Viewfinder: “In fact, I would say that it is an many instances preferable to the dismal (meant literally) and small optical viewfinders found on the smaller and usually inexpensive DSLRs.
Ergonomics: “It doesn’t have the elegance and stark simplicity of a Leica M9; in fact quite the opposite. But, given that it is a small form factor DSLR style camera with full features, not only for still photography but for video as well, it does a remarkable job of satisfy sometimes contradictory needs.
Reliability: “I’ve owned the GH1 for a couple of years and now the GH2. Both have been totally reliable, as have all the Panssonic lenses that I own, with the exception of the new 100-300mm. It failed just a few days after I got to Mexico, with a locked-closed aperture
Focusing: “Though the GH2 uses contrast detection AF, you wouldn’t know it from its speed.
Mirror Vibration: “There is no Mirror Vibration
Image Quality: “The difference between APS-C and MFT is de minimis.
Battery: “poor battery performance
The biggest issue?The biggest issue with the Panasonic GH2 is that a great many people that want to buy one, can’t, because these cameras seem to constantly be in short supply” (P.S.: Amazon US (Click here) says “Usually ships in 1 to 2 months”)

Do you agree with the LL analysis?

And you can check if the GH2 is in Stock by visiting the direct product pages at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay.

February 18, 2011
Posted in reviews

New Panasonic GF2 and 14mm lens reviews.


GF2 preview…in french ;)

The french website hybridcams previewed the new Panasonic GF2 (Click here to read the google english translation). And Pixinfo posted a detailed ISO image table. A full review has been written by David Babsky (at stevehuff.com): “Its drawbacks are very few ..far, far fewer than I’d expected.. and it certainly APPEARS simpler to use for a novice. It’s a very nice little interchangeable-lens compact camera. But I’m not a novice. So I’d use it for movies (or for the 4/3 Leica 14-50mm f2.8 low-light portrait zoom) but otherwise I’ll stick with the GF1 (the “Leica M9.5″) for stills. Out of 10? Eight-and-a-half ..and I can hardly wait for a HI-RES clip on viewfinder, to match the resolution of the GH2 SLR.
Check price and availability of all GF2 combos at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay.

Steve Huff had a lot of fun testing the new Panasonic 14mm f/2.5 pancake: “I found it performed excellent every time it was slung around me on the E-P2. What else can I say besides I LOVE IT! Over 500 frames shot with it and I found no issues or problems so I really have nothing bad to say about it. Is it as good as a Leica lens? NO, but this is under $400, not $4000 :) If you want a wide angle prime that is lightweight, thin and not so expensive then this one should be on your short list without question.
Click on the shop names to visit the direct 14mm pancake page and check price and availability: Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay.

February 18, 2011
Posted in reviews

Very first GH2 + Zeiss Cp lens image sample!


As you know Zeiss AG joined the Micro Four Thirds System group and the first products are the adapted CP.2 lenses. One of our readers just sent us the link to the very first image sample taken with the Panasonic GH2 and the $3.900 Compact Prime CP.2 85mm/T2.1 Cine Lens!

Click here: Portait sample at Flickr. You can enlarge the picture to his original size to check the sharpness. You can also see an image of the lens attached on the GH2. Huge!!!

Links: Compact Prime CP.2 85mm/T2.1 Cine Lens at Bhphoto (Click here).

Thanks Chris!

February 17, 2011
Posted in reviews

First Fuji X100 preview with real image samples JPG and RAW!

Image courtesy: Quesabesde.

Quesabesde (Click here) had the pleasure to test the new Fuji X100 with the firmware 0.69.
And those are a few of their findings:
– They found the menu a bit quirky
– Startup and shutter response is fast
– One of the major strengths of the cameras is the very silent (or “stealthy”) shutter!
– Autofocus of the X100 performs well in terms of speed and accuracy. Even in poor lighting conditions and with the assist light turned off, the reaction is correct.
– The camera supports up to 3,200 ISO smooth and even further if the conditions are not very critical.

But visit their website to check the JPG and RAW image samples. You can download the full size images!

And don’t forget to preorder the Fuji X100 at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay (no proerders in Europe yet).

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