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Thread: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

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    Default PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Well yesterday I went to the sneak peak, and below is what I stuipidly buried in another thread. All I can say is I am tired. Cody is up all the time.... He wants to party, even at 4 AM... But we all are having a great time so far.
    Here were my observations from Day 1:
    A Few more thoughts on today.
    Here is what I was able to put my hands on to this point.
    #1. the 14-50mm leica lens
    #2. the E-410
    #3. the E-510
    #4. the 14-42mm
    #1 - mentioned in another post. It was really nice.
    #4 - the 14-42mm lens was a very light weight lens, small and compact. For a budget lens, It seemed nice. I will have to wait and see what turns up, but really it seemed nice to me. Don't expect it to be a 14-54mm, but for a kit lens. I felt like quality.
    #2 - The E-410 - It is small. Just a little guy. It is truely the smallest DSLR I have held. I try to think, would I want to shoot this camera? If not I then whom? The little lens fit great with both the E-410 and E-510. It was a nice pair. However, my hands were to big, the camera was way to small for me. But for my wife, it was great. It will fit in very well. I think that this will replace her point and shoot camera.
    #3 the E-510 - This camera height is about the same. Width is more, partially because of more things inside (e.g. IS, bigger battery). However, I really liked the E-510 more than I liked the E-500. It fit better. Would I like it? Its ok. Will I buy it? Probably, until something else comes along. However, I own some great glass - and really putting the E-510 on the 90-250, 35-100, or even the 7-14mm seems to deprive the glass of what it deserves. Also I don't know how comfortable I will be having the camera on a neck strap with the 35-100mm it does not look like the camera was designed to hold the weight of the lens. (On the 90-250 at least the neck strap is attached to the lens.)
    I have said this many times and will again here. I think that Olympus makes the finnest glass on the market. However, their bodies....
    We will see what the images look like. How the IS really performs, and what the noise looks like. I have high hopes. If the E-510 lives up to its expectations, then I will be very happy. If not then its disapointing.
    Last note - I was screwing around with live view. They basically have gone to 1 mode. They found that Mode "A" and mode "B" was confusing. (In fact I got my own head screwed up when talking about it.) So it seemed to work as a hybrid mode A & B all in 1. You could zoom in 10X, as well as the auto focus works, by pushing the button half way.
    Ok, ok, last observation, now about the viewfinder. The viewfinder, is in my limited experience, of holding and playing with the camera for 10 minutes much much better. It is still a bit small, compared to a 35mm, or even the E-1. But It worked very well. It was very bright. they seemed to have given you a slightly bigger one. I compared it to my E-1, and it was slightly dimmer, but really it wasn't much. The new prism seems to be very good.
    I lied a few more thoughts- Auto focus speed, seemed to be very good. Much quicker in focusing in the room than my E-1 w/ grip did. Also they have moved the focus lock light. (you know the little red light that tells you when something is in focus, and which point is the focus) has been moved to the main screen. It is an very important improvement. I hate looking down in the viewfinder to see when my subject is in focus.
    Tomorrow, I am going to try to grab a few images, and see what other observations on the new cameras I can come up with.
    that is all I have got. I need to go to bed.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Thanks Tony - any word on availability and or price on the 2 EC? Of everything released it's about the most interesting for me and if the IS is "really" worth 4 stops! Read the 4 stops somewhere...sounds to good to be true!

    Dan

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Day 2 (The first official day of PMA.)
    I will try to answer all the questions I can that you all submited to me in another post.
    I got to meet with some of the very higher ups from Olympus. The chief designer, chief marketer, and a few others.
    Some of my answers will come from my experience there others will come from the interview. I am not going to say which is which I am to tired.
    Now in this post grammer, spelling, etc. Will be bad. So I apologize before hand. (Maybe a moderator, can fix it all for me? ) I'm just trying to get accurate info up ASAP.
    Also I really took over the whole conversation, the other guy stood no chance. In fact, I shot off so many questions, they looked terified at times.
    I ended up running over my time about 15 minutes. In addition I was in the booth asking questions 10 minutes before I was to, and they hadn't even setup yet. So the 30 minute meeting was nearly an hour. however, I didn't ask a few questions that you all had listed. I ran out of time.
    (The next post by me will have other questions I asked and a "few" shots, but that may have to wait till morning. I also inteviewed sigma, and Panasonic today.... Panasonic, was great. Sigma, well.... that was a large brick wall. I don't think they understood me, and well all that means is next time I need someone with me who speaks Japanese)
    The final outcome is what I hope will be a closer relationship between this site, and Olympus/Panasonic. They have promised that. However, I can say I wasn't the most tackful in asking for that.
    So in no particular order & no credit given to the one who asked it:
    what is SWD?
    It is basically the same focusing motors which are on the Canon lenses.
    Is SWD going to be released on the existing lenses as they are doing on the 50-200?
    Probably not anytime soon. At least most likely no through 08. Because the new focusing is that good. However, the 50-200mm was still to slow, and they wanted to to fix that one.
    Will they retrofit the pro lenses (e.g. 300mm, 150mm, 35-100mm etc....) with SWD?
    They had no comment about this, but again repeated no plans to make the existing lenses out in the market that have not been labeled SWD.
    What are the avalibility dates & prices of the new lenses?
    Unknown release date- Some time in 07. (Except for the 100mm macro, and 14-35mm) Also unknown about pricing, on any of the lens, or release dates, or anything. They would not share any info on glass which hasn't been made known yet.
    Info on the EC-20?
    2 stops of light loss. That's all I found out.

    How different is the auto focus system?
    It is very advanced. From my own experiences, It is able to track very nicely, unlike my E-1. Still 3 points. But the focus lock indicator has been moved to the screen. Which is a HUGE!!!!! improvement in my opinion.

    What is the HIGH ISO like?
    Ok, Oly had no comment except its better. however, images leaked to me, which I will not post, and I must say that the jpeg's are wonderful. I only saw up to ISO 1250, but that looks a little better than ISO 800 off my E-1.
    They claim because of the new technology, that the noise out of the 10 MP camera, is 1 stop cleaner than out of the 5 MP E-1. (In addition there is a higher Dynamic Range)
    With the in camera noise reduction the jpeg's are better than 1 stop improvement in noise in my opinion. I would say that the biggest disapointment with high noise images in the E-400 was the blacks. These blacks look great at 1250, as well as the other colors in the images.
    Many reasons are to this factor. Some of them include the sensor, the built in software, and finally, they have placed the chip on a new type of ciruct board. It is like a plyable membrane do hicky. (That's offical terminology from a true redneck here) (I will try to get a picture tomorrow).

    Info on the Next E-pro
    When will it be out: I was promissed 3 times in 07. I asked the question in several ways and was given that answer each time. (I would assume after June, because it wasn't announced at PMA)
    How much would it cost: no clue
    What are the features: We will see all the improvements of the consumer cameras, and then many more.
    Why so long to the market: It takes time to build a whole new camera system, and there are now many new lenses, flashes, and bodies.
    (I took many pictures of the body.)
    when will we hear about it: I don't know, but I guess it will be a few months before hand, like the cameras just released, if I had to guess. I personally am going to start saving next week.

    What about primes?
    I asked this question, and was told, they have spent there time developing a full 3 tier zoom range. Now that is complete, and they will bring out many primes. I ask about a pancake lens, and he said yes they are working on it. I asked about when, and suggested 08, and they seemed to said probably.

    why doesn't Oly support the full functionality of the system? (E.G. - can't use the aperture ring on the Leica/Panasonic lenses)
    Basically the system is open, but some features from different comapanies will not be able to work on the system. The Olympus cameras, can adjust aperture only by dial. OIS isn't going to be fully functional. Its how it is. (My guess is its part of the Oly/panasonic deal)
    But all lens are compatible, the metering works, and the auto focus works.

    Is the 3xx series dead?
    no reason to think that. the E-330 will continue to be released.

    How does Olympus classify there system for its users?
    The 400 series is targeted at new SLR users. People who never have shot a SLR camera before. Also the 400 series will be a great SLR for women, because of size, (smaller hands, smaller camea) The size is a bit to small for me, but Katie (my wife) loved it.
    the 500 series has the BLM-1 battery and has a larger grip. This means that I was more comfortable shooting it.
    Olympus has 3 classifications of lenses, consumer, mid range and pro, what about bodies?
    They see this as Pro bodies are single digit(E-9), consumer as 3 digit (E-600), and at some point they will release a mid level body 2 digit (E-30)
    (the E-9, 600, and 30 do not refer to any real camera, they are just examples)
    When will we see a mid level body? Who knows.

    What about live view?
    the new cameras, have live view A & B all in 1. The mirror picks up and all the auto focus comes from the sensor. you can also zoom in and manually focus just like on the E-330. It is both modes in 1. (And btw, it works great!! I really liked the setup)
    what about the Vibration Reduction?
    I couldn't try it out. they would not let me. but said it works good. Sorry I can't give more info on this one.

    What about software?
    They had free copies of Oly Master 2.0. Let me say I only played with it for about 10 minutes, and that was on a mac. It is vastly improved. It has the image III technology built in just like the jpeg creator in the camera. It was running at a Intel native application. It was quick, but they only had jpeg's on the computer I think. So it looked good. I have a copy of master, and will comment on it later in more depth.

    Will some of the features of the 410 be updated in the 400?
    I spent about 10 minutes on this question, the majority of the features will not be on the camera. Really all that the E-400 and E-410 share very few of the same qualities. They only things which are the same, is the plastic body and the battery. All the guts are very different. (Think about it, processor, mirror, sensor, etc. all different) but the gentleman said he would look into it.

    Wireless TTL flash?
    Basically no word, except they are working on it.

    A vertical grip for the E-510?
    they found that they didn't sell well. So most likely no.

    for the most part those were the answers I was given If I remember anything else I will add it later.

    It was a honor to meet the original designer of all Slr cameras, he showed how he first drew up the camera, then wood, then clay, and finally a plastic demo. That was cool.
    Also I saw how they got the cameras so small. Basically instead of 1 large circut board they have broken it up into 3 pieces or so, they then can release smaller cameras.

    Finally I saw how the VR works, as well as the SSWF, that was very neat.
    I asked would image quality be effected from a vibrating chip, like it is with IS in the lens. The answer was no not at all. The lenses are designed for this VR system. The light coming in is telecentric (I think that was the work) and there should be no loss of quality from this form of vibration reduction.

    All in all it was a good meeting. I am hoping to get more info from them in the future, so that this site, and the companies can work closer together.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Thanks Tony, please forgive me if the answer is somewhere else in a thread but where have they positioned the VF information, is it still on the right of the VF like in the E500 or have they moved it to the bottom like in the E1?
    Thanks in advance and have a good time. Say hello to our fellow members.
    Regards,
    Henk
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    photography is my passion
    you are invited to visit my gallery at http://mordisco.smugmug.com

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Super job for an off the cuff writeup!

    Did I read you correctly that the new bodies have contrast detection focus implementations? ie, they focus without dropping the mirror?

    Is the E-330 mode B "double mirror slap" gone? ie, are they able to meter off the main sensor, rather than dropping the mirror immediately before taking an exposure?

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Thanks Tony, this is very informative.

    Cheers,

    Henri

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Images from today. The lighting was tricky. (In addition to many photographers, taking shots at the same time.) Many of the pictures have had there contrast was effected to show as much detail as possible.
    (All pictures can be clicked on for larger shots!!!!)
    Here is the Sigmonster with the E-330 attached.
    Attachment 4100Attachment 4101
    here is the E-510 on a 300mm (Or 90-250mm)
    Attachment 4103
    Here is the old 40-150 vs the new version
    Attachment 4102
    The small size of the 70-300mm
    Attachment 4104
    this shows (poorly) that the 50-200 hasn't changed in size.
    Attachment 4108
    This is my wife holding the E-410. Katie really liked this camera.
    Attachment 4128
    This is the underwater housing. The picture of the lens, is the 7-14mm and its case. Really I was surprised at how big underwater housing is for the system. (Its been a long time since I've seen underwater SLR housing.
    Attachment 4124Attachment 4125
    Attachment 4126Attachment 4127
    E-Pro shots. from all angles that I could get.
    Attachment 4115Attachment 4116
    Attachment 4121Attachment 4117
    Attachment 4122Attachment 4118
    Attachment 4123Attachment 4119
    Attachment 4120Attachment 4129
    Here are a few shots from Panasonic, which I forgot to upload earlier....
    Attachment 4142Attachment 4143
    Attachment 4144
    The rest of the shots were from the cabnits which show the cut outs of cameras, and lenses, as well as the guts of the E-510.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Quote Originally Posted by acme View Post
    Did I read you correctly that the new bodies have contrast detection focus implementations? ie, they focus without dropping the mirror?Is the E-330 mode B "double mirror slap" gone? ie, are they able to meter off the main sensor, rather than dropping the mirror immediately before taking an exposure?
    Its late and I need to double check this one. But I think that they did... I know that focusing is off the sensor area, somehow. So I never heard the mirror flap down for that. And maybe metering is too. I need to double check this though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Henk Peter View Post
    Thanks Tony, please forgive me if the answer is somewhere else in a thread but where have they positioned the VF information, is it still on the right of the VF like in the E500 or have they moved it to the bottom like in the E1?
    Thanks in advance and have a good time. Say hello to our fellow members.
    Um.... I don't remember this one either. I will check tomorrow. I know that the focus point light is in the center of the screen. But I think that the info is at the bottom, like the E-1.... But I will know more tomorrow.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Quote Originally Posted by tspore View Post
    Will some of the features of the 410 be updated in the 400?
    I spent about 10 minutes on this question, the majority of the features will not be on the camera. Really all that the E-400 and E-410 share very few of the same qualities. They only things which are the same, is the plastic body and the battery. All the guts are very different. (Think about it, processor, mirror, sensor, etc. all different) but the gentleman said he would look into it.
    Very nice report Tony! Thanks for taking your time, especially with this question!

    As I'm completely aware of the internal differences between E400/410, I don't expect to have LV in E400, less noise, higher battery life or faster continuous shooting. But I'm quite sure, the other "missing" features I mentioned previously, are perfectly doable. You see, they were just removed from the E400 menu and added to E410.

    OK the compressed RAW is new. And as the E410 have new image processor, it may take longer to save the compressed RAW file in E400. But the solution would be to allow the users to save compressed or uncompressed RAW. So we could choose between speed and size. But as for the other things, I'm sure they were just removed from E400 because of the "marketing decision". Then found to be requested by customers and returned back in E410. But yes, I can be wrong..
    Oly E400 + OM 50/1.4 & OM 135/2.8
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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Somebody at Olympus must REALLY ENJOY sawing stuff in half. Looks like a 7-14 and 150 f/2 besides the 300mm this time.

    Were you able to tell which body was submitted to the knife?

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    Cool Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Great job Tony. I bet you are having a blast!
    The E-X question is: Should I wait for it, or get E-510 and then upgrade. I guess that I am spoiled by the E-1.
    The 50-200 seemed shorter, but if it is not, I don't see any reason to upgrade, except for the erratic AF.
    Again, great job. There is a beer waiting for you here when you are in the neighborhood.
    Does the E-X have an IS or not? (I assume it does, but it is still not clear)

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Maybe you could get Julie to give you a break with Cody. I'd do it, if I was there!!

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Good job Tony

    You deserved your press pass quite well. Milked them out as much as you did...great.
    Hope this FTP-Olympus relationship is gonna work, for our sake and more importantly for you and this site !

    Now get some sleep and then get out there AGAIN, fast .
    Arjan

    "Thinking is bad for taking pictures...it's not about thinking, it's about discovering" - Eliott Erwitt

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Great job Tony, and alot of work too.
    I think a non mirror LV mode would be great and illiminate the need for Mirror lock up on the tripod.
    Interesting answer for the 3xx series, thank you for asking that. Other than the shape and articulated screen there isn't much that isn't accomplished in the new bodys.
    If everything performs as advertized Oly fans will be very happy.
    JimB
    E 5, E 3, E 330, C-8080, 8mm FE, 7-14, 11-22, 12-60,PL 25MM F 1.4, 35MM, 50MM F 2, 50-200, 70-300, EX 25, EC 1.4 & 2.0, FL 40, FL 5Or, FL 20, SRF-11, Foam Ring Flash.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Hi Tony, and thanks for the great work.

    Is the noise improvement only related to jpg processing or have the base raw files been improved as well? - Perry

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Tony, I am authorized by russian 4/3 photocommunity to pass You a thousands of thanks - I have given a link to your posts on our phorum, and guys have fond answers to many of their questions. Thanks a lot!
    From Russia with Love,, Andrey Sudbin, offroad journalist

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Great report Tony, and much appreciated...

    Many questioned answered...
    I'm nobody's fool. I can do it all on my own.

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    Default Re: Kudos to you Tony ..

    Great job Tony. You must be tired as hell.

    Was there any word why they stepped away from articulating LCD screen?


    Thanks again

    Marek

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Maybe a few more answers....
    Quote Originally Posted by jonr View Post
    Great job Tony. I bet you are having a blast!
    The E-X question is: Should I wait for it, or get E-510 and then upgrade. I guess that I am spoiled by the E-1.
    The 50-200 seemed shorter, but if it is not, I don't see any reason to upgrade, except for the erratic AF.
    Again, great job. There is a beer waiting for you here when you are in the neighborhood.
    Does the E-X have an IS or not? (I assume it does, but it is still not clear)
    I think I may get the E-510, but I have bought almost every other Oly camera, but the E-500 (and 400) It was a nice little guy to shoot. I will get the 400 at some point for Katie, then she can join us here on the forum.

    Quote Originally Posted by Perry Jacobs View Post
    Hi Tony, and thanks for the great work.
    Is the noise improvement only related to jpg processing or have the base raw files been improved as well? - Perry
    Um... I shouldn't even know about the jpeg's, doubt that I would have anything to get the raw files converted right now. But oly did promise 1 stop improvement. Which is very big.
    It was my observations that it was more than 1 stop.


    Quote Originally Posted by mxs View Post
    Great job Tony. You must be tired as hell.
    Was there any word why they stepped away from articulating LCD screen?
    Thanks again
    Marek
    I didn't ask but my guess, is that's the 300's series feature. (More parts more$$$) and I would guess the body isn't designed to be as small and light weight as possible. like the 400 & 500 series.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Tony,
    Thanks for asking all the questions. When you get finished today, it will be 5 o'clock somewhere so raise a glass. We'll be raising one to you.
    Steve

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    E510 should be more expensive than E330 or not? I am still puzzled by this Olympus move.

    Thanks anyways

    Marek

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Thanks, Tony. Great job!

    Roger

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Thanks for the coverage Tony.

    I took the time to read the specs you posted in the other thread and see that the 510 is using the BLM1. I'm disappointed in the decision to not put a grip on the 510 but for the market it as aimed at I suspected that would be the case.

    If I read your post correctly, a prosumer version in the E series is planned. I expect that should hit the shelves in 09 or 10. Oh well, my 300 still takes photos and perhaps I can pick up a used 300 body once people start upgrading. That IS in the 510 is really tempting for me though. In my entry to dslr the choices came down to KM and Oly for the obvious reasons.

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Tony...did you get to handle the 14-35 or just look at it in the case? In the photo it dwarfs the 12-60, so it looks fairly hefty. The 77mm filter size is the same as the 35-100, so I've got an idea of the mass...I'm guessing about 1.5x the size of the 7-14???

    Your thoughts?

    Thanks,
    Chuck

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    Default Re: PMA Experience Day 1 & 2....

    Any word on why the 14-35 has been moved to 2008?

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