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February 25, 2011
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Olympus XZ-1 reviews, in Stock status and contest!

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Infosyncworld tested the new Olympus XZ-1: “The Olympus XZ-1 matched Canon’s best fixed lens warriors when it came to still image quality, and it proved itself a worthy tool to have in the field. It’s the Mini Me of PEN Land, and we welcome it with open arms.

There is a hands-on report at Cameraguide: “The XZ-1 also proved itself to be generally more satisfying to use than the competition. At this point we’ve tested all the major players in the advanced compact sector and we can say with some confidence that the XZ-1 was more enjoyable and more fun to use than all of them.

Photography Blog and Olympus are giving away a fantastic Olympus XZ-1 premium compact camera, worth £399.99 / $499.99.

The XZ-1 is in Stock almost everywhere! Click those direct links to check price and availability: Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

February 24, 2011
Posted in reviews

Panasonic GF2 tested by DPreview!


Dpreview (Click here) posted the new Panasonic GF2 review! The camera gets a 70% overall score. For comparison: The Olympus E-PL2 (Click here to read that review) got a 71% score. The main reason for the slight edge of the E-PL2 is: “likeable and convenient though we found the GF2, it’s up against the Olympus E-PL2 which produces consistently better JPEG images from essentially the same sensor

Price comparison:
Panasonic GF2 direct links at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay
Olympus E-PL2 direct links at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay -> In US you have a $50 instant rebate, and a $100 instant rebate on the dual kit at BHphoto (Click here).

What do you prefer?

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Thanks Luis

February 23, 2011
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Four new Four Thirds lens reviews!

Since a long time we are used to read Micro Four Thirds reviews only. But ePhotozine just posted four new Four Thirds lens reviews!

1) The first lens they tested is the Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 8mm f/3.5 Fisheye: “Performance-wise, it is a bit of a mixed-bag, with soft images at maximum aperture and strong chromatic aberrations towards the edges, but with a little care, and maybe some post-processing, this lens should be able to produce decent enough results.
Check the lens price and availability at: Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

2) Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 12-60mm f/2.8-4 SWD: “Although the price tag may seem a little steep at first, this lens justifies it with very good optical performance, and a very handy zoom range for walking about town”
Check the lens price and availability at: Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

3) Olympus Zuiko Digital 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 II: “For the price this lens commands, I expected a better performance than this lens delivers, especially at 14mm, where I am quite disappointed.
Check the lens price and availability at: Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

4) Olympus Zuiko Digital Ed 50mm f/2 Macro: “This 50mm macro optic from Olympus is an interesting choice for Four Thirds format cameras due to its compact dimensions and bright maximum aperture. Although the performance wide open may not be of the highest order, it is well-suited to portraiture, and stopping the lens down can produce excellent results.
Check the lens price and availability at: Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

February 22, 2011
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New Olympus XZ-1 and 75-300mm lens reviews.

Photographyblog (Click here) tested the Olympus M.ZUIKO Digital ED 75-300mm f/4.8-6.7 Micro Four Thirds lens. After a five page long review the conclusion is: “Overall, we enjoyed shooting with the Olympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 75-300mm f/4.8-6.7 a lot and have been pleased with the results. Most of our photos came out sharp, with acceptable levels of distortion and almost no chromatic aberrations. However, a long telezoom like this will always be a speciality lens and with the M.Zuiko costing as much as it does, it seems one needs a very good reason to commit to a purchase.
Check the lens price and availability at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

Pocket Lint (Click here) posted their Olympus XZ-1 review “Shoehorning in almost as many features as its E-PL2 bigger brother, if you don’t want to change the F/1.8, 28-112mm equivalent lens on the front, the XZ-1 is the easier to use, as well as transport. Sure, an asking price of £399 is not inconsiderable, but at least it’s comparable with its immediate rivals that are also priced at a premium. After practically holding a wake with the release of the E-5 DSLR, fortunately it’s now party hats and streamers time for Olympus in the case of the XZ-1.
Chek the camera price and availability at Amazon, Adorama, B&H, J&R, eBay

February 21, 2011
Posted in reviews

Olympus XZ-1 reviews

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.

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