New Olympus E-5 review at Photographyblog!


There is a new Olympus E-5 review at Photographyblog. It’s a real pleasure to read the first phrase of their final conclusions: “The Olympus E-5 is an exceptionally well-built and rugged digital SLR camera that is a joy to use and produces remarkably crisp images with great colours, and resolution that defies its pixel count.” The camera gets “Highly Recommended“. As you will have noticed almost all E-5 reviews do mention the same (many) strengths but also the same only major weakness….the high price.
There is one more czech review at (google tranlsated). And if you want to read more E-5 news and reviews click here to read all our E-5 related posts on 43rumors.

E-5 preorder links:
Amazon US, BHphoto, Adorama, Amazon DE, Amazon UK, Amazon FR.

P.S.: There are a few Olympus deals at BHphoto (Click here)!

  • jeff

    do want , cant afford

  • Neonart

    Jeff, i would say sell an organ or a family member you dont like. It’s a fantastic camera. Amazing detail. Great color. Fast. Noise is very well handled too. When I leave it on auto ISO I’m amazed when I look back at iso 1250 shots. I always think it’s at a lower iso. Only when pixel peeping cn you see something. It’s forte, but great considering how great it does ia all other aspects. And you still can’t beat the 4/3 lens range.

    Let’s see what DPreview says if they ever get around to it.

  • Boss

    Yeah, Dpreview is really taking their time. I’m assuming somebody at Olympus has pissed Dpreview off or something, why else would they take longer than everybody else? Are they just being arrogant, get on with the damn review, is it really that hard??

    • bilgy_no1

      The review will be something like this:

      If you look at the K-5 review, you can already compare the images to the Olympus E-5:

      High ISO
      Looks a little bit noisier than K-5, 7D and D7000, but colours still look good at ISO1600.

      JPEG comparison:
      E-5 looks impressively detailed compared to cameras with higher pixel count.

      RAW comparison:
      Very clean output (K-5, D7000 have jaggies; E-5 very clean and sharp).

      Rest of the review can be figured out: great build, nice screen and OVF. Very good IQ for 12MP, 4/3 sized sensor. No-brainer for those invested in SHG lenses.
      Downsides: price, system?, High ISO (above 1600 somewhat behind competition), 12MP limited compared to competition for cropping/large prints (although it does provide all the detail).

      Gets something like 78 points (is that gold or silver?)

    • DPReview really doesn’t like Olympus. The reviews were always lacking the consistency, they usually display when reviewing Canikon.

      E-520 review showed good IQ: sample studio shots were displaying all the beauty of 50mm lens. But then when reviewing Canon or Nikon cameras, and comparing IQ to E-520, suddenly IQ dropped: they were using different sample shots, not the same as in original E-520 review and somehow clearly of lower quality. Still remember well how pissed I was at the time.

      • tgutgu

        I guess you have some kind of paranoia. It has always taken time for dpreview to follow up with all new camera releases, simply because they need quite a bit of effort. Additionally, the E-5 wasn’t really available and is currently not in stock at my (large) dealer here in Germany. So it might be that in part the reason is also on Olympus side. Other major releases, like the Panasonic Lumix GH2 aren’t reviewed yet as well – so what?

        It is natural that dpreview concentrates first on the new releases, which likely will have the highest customer demand – and these are still Canon and Nikon cameras, that is reality.

        Accusing dpreview of being biased is by all means a bit unfair. Of course there is always a bit of subkjective opinions in each review but if you compare this to the numerous “user reviews” or blogs out in the net, the dpreview results are usually much better documented.

        Complaining about an unfair judgement of the E-520 seems quite a bit unjustified either. It is known that the 4/3 sensors in the smaller Olympus cameras were not on par with their APS-C counterparts and the smaller Olympus bodies always had one major dealbreaker: the bad, small, tunnelvision optical view finders.

        That these factors get into the review results should not surprise anybody. The Olympus E-4xx, E-5xx. and E-6xx bodies were fine cameras, but to claim that they were on par with contemporary products from Canon or Nikon and to call reviews which did not back that as biased, is a bit out of reality.

        The small Olympus cameras were the predecessors of the current m4/3 wave: small system cameras, were size and weight was priority over the last bit of IQ. Fortunately, with m4/3 it is possible to make large view finders (EVFs) in smaller bodies (GH2) and it is quite astonishing that Panasonic somehow continues the legacy of the small Olympus DSLRs with its Gx and GHx series, whereas Olympus completely fails on this.

        The problem with 4/3 was the contradiction of the fine glass (Zuiko lenses) paired with the sub par sensors and camera bodies.

        • Boss

          @tgutgu – you’re obviously a Canikon mark…

          • tgutgu

            Not at all. I don’t own either a Canon nor a Nikon system. I just claim that it is normal for a site like dpreview, to review the most popular systems first and that this has nothing to do wiht a brand preference. The newest release of my favorite (Lumix G) hasn’t been reviewed yet as well, but I am not pissed off with dpreview.

        • “Complaining about an unfair judgement of the E-520 seems quite a bit unjustified either.”

          What you are talking about???

          How E-520 sucks at high ISOs you or DPReview do not need to tell me. Visible banding at ISO800 is norm of life.

          Problem was that studio test shots of E-520 appearing in different DPReview reviews were of clearly different quality (probably taken by different people). The ones in the E-520 review itself were OK while the ones appearing for comparison in Canikon reviews were of clearly poorer quality. I were putting the studio shots side by side at the time – and the difference was more than just obvious.

          But frankly I’m fine with that. I recalled the simple rule that one should first and foremost look at the names of people who did the reviews. If different people did the reviews, then their results are obviously incomparable. And DPReview is no exception from the rule.

  • Sambob

    Bought mine a month ago and have never looked back. Another great review confirms what I am experiencing in the field as a pro. Great camera! Expensive, no when you think what it does and how it is built; it will take everything that is thrown at it.

    • touchdown

      Hi Dummy0001, I completely get your drift about “biased” reviews. I came across a review in a Dec 2010 issue of a photography magazine in a bookstore just last week, that did a comparison between the Canon 7D, Nikon D300s, Pentax (forgot the model) and Olympus E3. The E5 was launched in Oct, and they chose to use the E3 in their comparison tests? I could still forgive them for that as it could be they just did not have the means to get their hands on an E5 (not a good excuse though..) but what really shocked me was they tested the E3 using the zuiko 40-150 lens! Why did they have to use the “kit standard” 40-150 for the test, when the “usual kit lens” for the E3 would be the 12-60, or if not, the 14-54 at least? It came as no surprise that the Oly came out last among the 4 cameras tested.

  • Chris

    The E-5 with a 14-35mm f/2.0 SWD and a 50mm f/2.0 macro would define my perfect digital system. Too bad I can’t afford it at all.

  • Neonart

    Well, I’m sure their reader base is mostly Canikon. They really don’t need to please the small minority of Oly users to help their bottom line. Even Pentax is getting more action in the mainstream than Oly.
    I think once that Miguel guy said they weren’t developing any more 4/3 everybody wrote the system off as a sinking ship, and Olympus can’t seem to help that image. If only they spit out another 4/3 lens, even if ts a SWD remake (like the 50 f2), people might start to believe and take Olympus seriously.

    • Chris

      Agreed. Saw a post on the forum about how the D7000 got a glowing review posted extremely quick, while the Photokina Star Award winner, the Pentax K-5, didn’t get a review until a couple days ago.

      In my opinion, the K-5 and the E-5 are two of the better cameras to come out in a while.

      • napalm

        I think they rushed the D7000 review for Christmas. Whether Nikon had anything to do with that, we can only speculate.

        As good as the K5 or E5 might be, they are still cult cameras and wont have that much purchases as the D7000 would this holidays.

    • Boss

      @Neonart- Well, I think the Olympus PEN cameras are quite talked about as well, so I think Pentax does not get the kind of attention Olympus does overall. And the K-5 does seem nice, but like the Nikon and Canon APS-C, it does not beat the image quality of the E-5 up to 1000 ISO, or so. To beat it, you really need a full-frame like the D700 or A850.

    • Ross

      Better still, a 100mm SWD macro lens would be really appreciated.

  • if it £999 here instead of £1499 I would have one already

    dpreview news letter said ‘that’s all folks’ or something like that … so I guess the E-5 review will be a Jan-11 thing?

    and I really do hope that Olympus fired the idiot that made that statement, yes it looks true enough, but the number of lost sales of E-5 or remaining E-30 or E-620 and others plus lenses must be significant!

    all I want for Christmas is news that Olympus will make an E-35 and E-650 with electronic viewfinder instead of the mirror box … SLR is after all a camera with a mirror box (by definition the Pan G & GH series are not SLRs) … and the tie-in with pan chips ends in 8 days time. want news on 01-Jan-11 ;)

    • 43 photo

      “and I really do hope that Olympus fired the idiot that made that statement, yes it looks true enough, but the number of lost sales of E-5 or remaining E-30 or E-620 and others plus lenses must be significant!”

      They should fire a lot of marketing guys then, because all of their marketing mangers worldwide have made opposite and unclear statements about the future of 4/3rds. Olympus marketing is really an example how to destroy a brand reputation quickly. So many people left 4/3rds bedcause they do not want to invest their money in a sinking ship. Olympus should learn how to communicate with their customer base.

      • M

        Ditto. +1

      • tgutgu

        And add to this the management who decided to build their m4/3 product line only on one body concept, the PEN line. This is not enough to survive as a system camera manufacturer. They should have taken an approach like Panasonic: come out with a differentiated camera line quickly, instead of incremental iterations of the PEN concept, where even the third incarnation does not meet important criterias, such as ergonomics and performance.

    • Boss

      @dCap- yes an E-30 or E-620 successor would be nice…

  • Scott

    Reviews at this point are useless. Nobody gives Olympus an apples to apples review. If your use to driving a Honda or Toyota your not going to appreciate the benifits of a BMW. YOu cant compare a Toyota to a BMW (oh and btw the E5 is the BMW) Yes the ISO performance isnt as good, Who the freak cares. Its only one stop off from the best and if you use the SHG you get that stop back and you can still be sharp. You can judge a camera by looking at images online. You have to shoot with it and feel it to appreciate it. I mean who puts down phase one or Hasselblad for not going above ISO 800 or 1600? Nobody

    You really have to buy into the whole system to appreciate it. We have 5 photographers in our studio. I sold one of them my 5Dmll. 2 of them shoot with the 7d and 2 of us use the E5. At the end of the day you cant freakin tell which camera was used but they all agree the Olympus color is better and easier to adjust and they all agree the I.S. on the olympus as its advantages. They consistantly have blurrier pictures the the 2 of us. We can shoot 1/30 with our zooms and they have to be careful at 125 with I.S turned on. They always shoot 1 to 2 stops higher on their ISO than we do because they have to.

    • tgutgu

      You are probably correct with your statements regarding the E-5. But marketing fails to convince the crowd. Instead of releasing the E-5, Olympus should have spent the developing effort into a smaller pro-level m4/3 camera with the same image processor of the E-5, and make the move to mirrorless more consequent than they have done so far with their PEN bodies and their m4/3 lens line up.

      Panasonic has shown with their GH2 that EVFs and performance can be on par or at least very close to current mid range DSLRs. While the GH2 is mostly tailored towards video integration, Olympus could have set a mark by introducing an advanced camera bodiy with a good build-in VF and concentrate on features for productive stills photography, where Panasonic is still behind, i.e.:

      – pro level lenses
      – pro level flash system
      – burst rate and burst buffer
      – battery life
      – remote control
      – body robustness
      – help full tools, such as build-in level

      From what rumors tell, is that Olympus recognized its shortcomings and will release new stuff in 2011, which is hopefully not another PEN.

      • KJS

        Not everyone wants a small pro-level camera, I as sure as hell don’t. besides the size, the focusing speed is not up to par and I wouldn’t get performance that I require. I also do not want to give up my OVF! Give it a rest, the E-5 is a fantastic camera, I have enjoyed my thoroughly in the short time I’ve had it. Your m43 camera will come soon enough.

        Random… I did a wedding last saturday and shot an indoor wedding. 1433 shots on one battery, still haven’t had to charge it.

        • Neonart

          Holy moly! 1433 on one BLM-5!? That’s great. Last wedding I shot I had far less than that from my main camera (E3) and I had to switch batts.

          Was your LCD on at all?

          Cant wait to run 2 BLM-5s on the HLD-4!!!

          • It was on, most of my shooting was pretty quickly… checked the lcd for exposure primarily… So I didn’t use it a lot, I did however do about 2mins worth of video as well. I didn’t use the built-in flash at all. :) I was surprised. 1233 were from the wedding, then the battery got to rest over night, then I took another 200 at a night service at our church. The break probably has a little bit to do with the long life :P

        • safaridon

          Maybe not everyone wants a small pro-level camera but judging from the positive response to the smaller x100 introduction maybe more than you think are interested. Size not big enough well I am sure many would prefer the rangefinder shape of a smaller LC1 or Leica Sumilux3 even if with a smaller EVF.

          Not up to focusing speed? The new GH2 AF speed reportedly is faster than that of the E-5 at 0.1 sec and then I don’t believe the E-5 does 40fps?

          Yes the E-5 with its available lens may be a wonderful tool but I would rather have a E-5 with less bulk and weight say like the K5 size?

          • KJS

            Where is your source for focusing speed?

            I’m not saying there wasn’t/isn’t an interest,
            tgutgu was saying that >instead< of releasing the E-5, they should have focused on a small pro-level camera. This I disagree with. I prefer the bulk and build quality and I'm sure I'm not alone, I think pro m43 is a great idea. I have no problem with m43 being developed alongside, though I think it would have been a bad move to leave out the e-5.

            Video? Are you a photographer or a Videographer? Video has never been a selling point for me, I am a still photographer. Video is only an added bonus. I don't care that it doesn't do 40fps or 1080p.

          • safaridon

            Pany tests says the GH2 can auto focus in only 0.1 second with kit14-140 lens and most reviews describe its AF as being lightning fast at least equal to mid range DSLRs or faster and with better accuracy. DPR does not test AF speed in most of their comparative reviews so I do not know exactly how fast the E-5 actually is but some reviews have said GH2 is faster but not of course when used with Oly 43 lenses for E-5.

          • Inge-M.

            Is the video, or singel shots, so have o,1 second AF speed?

        • Boss

          @KJS – I really loved the battery life with my old E-510. The E-620 requires two batteries for 800+ shots, but the E-5 only requires one for even more shots. I look forward to owning an E-5.

          • KJS

            yea, I too have a 510, my last shoot I got around 1100, fantastic :)

    • 43photo

      with my E3 (and now E5) I can easily shoot tack sharp images with 300/2.8 +EC20 (=1200mm !!) at 1/13sec shutterspeed. It is so commin to me that I never realized this is very hard to achieve with other systems. I told this in a camera store and they were thinking I own a 3000 usd tripod set. Olympus IS is so good you do not need a heavy tripod to achieve such results.

      Olympus marketing consistently fials to communicate the strengths of 4/3 as a system. It really could have been done much better.

      They seem to have learned something, I see pen commercials on TV almost every week now.

      • KJS

        Do you have some images that you can share? I would love to see a handheld 1/13th second shot at 1200mm? I find that I have trouble handholding 1/15th- 1/20 @ 400mm.

        • Scott

          I have had the same experience with the new battery. I shot a whole wedding with it as well.

          Yes 1/13th of a second if feasable if the subject isnt moving. I switched to canon for 3 months and I had so many blurry pictures. I went to the camera store because I thought something was wrong it the camera and after inspection the owner of the store said what were you shooting with before you bought this? I said the E3 and he laughed and said thats your propblem. You have to be still with the Canon. LOL Olympus users do get spoiled with the IS but if you shoot with an olympus like you do a canon you can go down to 1/13th no problem

          • KJS

            Yea, pretty great. Though I did find out that I forgot to turn on IS… how dumb am I? Probably could have had a better experience…

          • Boss

            @Scott- Funny story, because most of the camera guys at my local store shoot Olympus. One guy actually shoots Nikon, though, (which I do like) and he tried to switch me to Nikon one day and attached a 60mm macro lens to a D90 and took some extreme macros handheld at high ISO, then he gave me the SD card and told me to review it on a computer screen in the store. The second I saw the Nikon images on the screen, I instantly knew that I had to stick with Olympus. The only way to get a Nikon to compete with Olympus macro results, is to buy a D700 and the most expensive IS Nikon macro lens – because if you go with cheaper 60mm lens and a lesser body, then you’ll get results that don’t even come close to OLYMPUS.

        • 43photo

          a misunderstanding: not handheld but taken with a regular tripod set (and not a 3000 euro/ usd one)

          • KJS

            my bad, still impressive

  • Scott

    We teach a basic photography class at our studio and I was talking about shooting my 35-100 @ 80th of a second and a student who was shooting a nikon said he went to Nikon school and they said you cant do that. You have to use a shutter speed equal to the focal length. I had totally forgoten that old rule. Olympus will spoil you, not with IQ. but with just basic functions and ease of shooting IMO

    I think every camera has good enough IQ now days. Shoot some have too much for what I do. When you shootin portraits you have to do more work with better IQ LOL

  • For people who look at the DPR studio shots of the E-5.

    Nice catch:

    • oops. the folks were wrong. sorry for the noise.

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