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Thread: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

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    Default Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    Hi everyone,

    I need some help in deciding between 2 previous Pro-level camera models.

    I currently have two E-510s and an E-30. The last few years, I'd been using them mostly for events, concerts/performances (and one of the 510s stays home for Product shots) after starting my hobby with my first love of just simple outdoor nature shots or zoo trips. My shooting environments have been pretty "clean" for the most part. I'd been content with using those cameras for those purposes.

    Now though, I want to go back to more nature/animal photography ("real" wildlife, not the zoo) but this time to be a lot more flexible or daring -- shooting in more challenging outdoor conditions year-round without worrying about protecting or ruining the other cameras I have. I'll need at least one rugged, affordable "weatherproof" camera to do more with.

    I've been seeing many E-3s being offered for sale for a while -- the prices dropping like rocks. However, with the new OM-D camera out, some E-5s have been popping up for sale too (not as low in price as the E-3s of course -- yet).

    I'm stuck on whether I should wait for the E-5 prices to go lower or grab an older E-3 now. Is the E-5 so much better that I should wait for price drops on it? Would a used E-3 still be good enough? Does anyone here still have theirs and are happy with image quality and weatherproof functionally after all this time? I'd eventually like to have a back-up just like I do with the E-510, but one for now will do.

    I have all the lenses I'd ever need now. It's just picking a good body I can afford that'll last and make the best images too. Any input would be appreciated. Thanks!
    Paula
    PMB Images

    "When your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt."
    ~ Henry J. Kaiser

    E-510 (x 2) || E-30 || EP-L1 || 50-200mm || 14-54mm || 11-22mm || 50mm f2 || EC-14 || EX-25 || FL-36 (x 2) || FL-50 || Hyperdrive 120GB (portable storage)

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    While not a consensus opinion, I find E-30 images preferable to the E-3 while the E-5 is clearly better than both. Both the E-3 & 5 of course give you the weather protection you want, so I suppose your decision hinges on whether you'd be satisfied with the E-3's output.

    I don't expect any heavy E-5 discounts until its successor is announced.

    Cheers,

    Rick

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    I have just got an E5 and, based on my (limited) experience, I would recommend this.

    I think the performance of the E30 would be rather similar to my E620 and both of them probably rather better than the E3.

    The E5 is very much better than the E620. Image processing is far better, screen VF and focus speed better.

    It is heavier of course, but weight of E5 is the same as E620 + HLD5.

    Wait for an E5 you can afford, then go for it....
    Peter J

    OM-D E-M5 E-P3, E-P2, VF-2, M17, M14-42 ll, M12-50, M40-150 Mk2 M74-300 Mk2, Pana M14-42PZ, DMW-MA1, 14-54 ll, 25 pancake, 35, FL50.
    Sony RX100. SonyRX10

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    I have had my E-5 for a couple weeks now. Having had both the E-3 and E-5, I can say the E-5 is a far superior camera. Definitely get the E-5 if you can afford it.
    E-5, E-500
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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    I also have both the E-3 and E-5. The E-5 is the better camera. I don't touch my E-3 any more (should probably sell it). If you can get a good deal, go for the E-5.

    caver3d

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    When do you want to meet your goals? Now or next year?

    You could always use what you now but just use a lot of common sense while using it in adverse environments. In the rain, snow, or sand storm, just cover it. In the extreme cold, put it inside your coat ever few minutes and keep the gear encased when moving from inside to outside or vice versa. And so on. That worked for many decades for hundreds of photographers.

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    I have or have had all of the bodies in this discussion. I feel that the E-5 is so far superior to the E-3 in terms of IQ, screen viewing, and usability, that I sold both E-3s and got two E-5s. I always want two identical bodies for backup for field work. I have an E-M5 on pre-order, and, if it proves to be all that people are reporting, I will get a second for my lightweight travel rig. The OMD will not replace the E-X bodies, but will likely augment them for travel. I still believe that the E-5s will focus SHG glass better and faster than the OMD, so they are still part of my serious work. I am still hopeful for an E-7 or whatever it might be called. I will probably sell the E-520 and E-1, just because the others are so much better, and I no longer desire to keep legacy bodies for sentimental reasons. That's my take on this question.
    Ken610

    4/3: E-5 x2, HLD-4 x2, E-520, E-1, 9-18, 12-60 SWD, 14-42, 14-54 I, 18-180, PL 25/1.4, 25/2.8, 35-100/2, 40-150 II, 50/2, 50-200 SWD, Bigma 50-500, 70-300, 90-250/2.8, 150/2, 300/2.8, EC-14, EC-20, EX-25, FL-50r x2, FL-36r, Jobu Jr, Jobu HD2.
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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by pmbpro View Post
    Hi everyone,

    Is the E-5 so much better that I should wait for price drops on it? Would a used E-3 still be good enough? Does anyone here still have theirs and are happy with image quality and weatherproof functionally after all this time?

    Define "good enough."

    I'll be the odd man out here and tell you that the E5 is an incrementally better camera than the E3, but not revolutionarily better as the E3 is over the E1. As a practical matter, you can do essentially anything with an E3 that the E5 does, except for the movie mode, and some kind of "art filters" things that I've never even looked at. The image quality may, in fact, be slightly better in lab testing with the E5, but if you're primarily making 16x20s or smaller, or using them for web display, I defy you to tell the difference looking at two identical photos, one taken with each body.

    I have two E3s and the E5 and the E3s have continued to be my workhorse bodies. The E5 has some nice features, and the larger viewing screen is nice... not essential, but nice... but again, depending on what you're doing with them and how the final product is displayed, I don't think that there's enough difference to worry about. If there's a good E3 out there that catches your fancy at a price that's attractive to you, don't hesitate. They're all good.

    Disclaimer: I have two E3s for sale in the classifieds. I also have an E5 that I'm keeping. I'm selling the E3s because I'm buying into the Fuji bright-line viewfinder body system and it makes sense to keep only the newest Oly body for my HG & SHG glass. Please don't color my comments because I have two E3s for sale. I'm not trying to promote sales of them in this thread in any way; I really just don't see that many improvements. If you search through my old comments, you'll find that I've made these same statements about what I perceive as merely slight and incremental differences in the E3 and E5 many times. If you were buying new, I'd suggest the E5 simply because it's foolish to buy older technology when something newer is availalbe. Buying used, look for the most function for the dollars you have to spend.
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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    personally i go to E3
    Owning a DSLR does not make you a photographer. It makes you a DSLR owner -AnonymousE-3|E-M5|NX-300|Zuiko Digital : 14-54 MK II|ZD 50-200 ED|50/2 IZuiko OM : OM 50/1.4|OM 50/1.8|Tamron : SP 90/f2.5|Tamron 18F|01FMetz 44-AF1|EVF-2|MMF-2|Mal-1NX : 18-55 MK III|SEF-A8Mono-TriPod|Pro Runner 350|Slingshot 200AW|Compuday 150|Toploader 55|Passport Sling

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    I have both the E5 and the E3. The E3 has less noise at low ISO and more at high (and the noise is structured with smears and streaks) and is slightly blurry. The E5 has less noise at higher ISO, but still some at low, but the noise is more random and less structured. The E5 is very very very sharp - amazingly so. The difference is a matter of taste, really. You can take perfect pictures at ISO 100 for 8x10" prints with the E3, whereas the noise on the E5 is always there, but it handles bigger enlargements better (even though it is never perfect, the way the E3 can be).

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    A tough choice. Get the E5 the image quality and sharpness is much better that the E3. The thinner aa filter was like using unsharp mask in PS. The E5 has much more clarity. Lenses will be cheaper but you will always have the worrying thought like I did Olympus will soon abandon the E line. I wanted the 7-14mm lens so bad but just couldn't invest that kinda cash in an uncertain future. Get the E-M5. It is still cheaper than a new E5. Many lens options, stunning image quality ect. But if you show up for a pro wedding shooting your clients will wonder what you are doing with a toy camera.lol
    Either way you can't lose. I always say if you can afford the latest and greatest get it and enjoy it. The E-M5 will last you years and with the image quality you may never need another upgrade unless out of just pure want to. I have had mine only one day and can see Olympus really hit the mark with this one.
    The E5 is turning into a grandfather right before our eyes and in only a few short months. If you look what is being offered on the market for the same price or cheaper from Nikon and Sony.


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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    I would stick with your two E-510s until you can afford an E-5. Sure the controls are not as convenient and the build is not quite as tough (though compared with Canikon bodies of the same level, the E-510 is extremely solid and not fickle in wet weather), but the IQ of the E-510 is the best of the 4/3 DSLRs up until (but not including) the E-5. The E-5 and all subsequent bodies (ie, late generation PENs and OM-D) were the first major jump in quality since then. As much as I loved the build, controls, and weather sealing of my E-3, I considered it a downgrade from the E-510 for picture qualiyy, as the E-510 produced sharper files with lower compression and better color. In particular the JPG files. Of course, the E-510 was very limited in Dynamic Range. I don't know how important that is to you, but the E-3 is no better.

    The E-5 however is a significant upgrade in every way. The superior build and controls as well as the bright pentaprism viewfinder (better than your E-30) of the E-3 mixed with better image quality than we've ever seen in an Olynpus digital camera up until then (of course, we now have the E-M5...). I'd wait for that one.
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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    Thanks for your generous input and suggestions, everyone! I've been reading reviews and experiences about these cameras (I'd totally forgotten how long ago the E-3 came out too, until I read older threads online). I noticed in old threads on other boards that people were saying the E-3's dynamic range isn't as good as the E-5's, especially regarding highlight clipping.
    Someone asked what I meant by "good enough". Besides the weatherproofing which both cameras are great for, the dynamic range/detail, sharpness, colour fidelity and noise were the other issues I was looking at for outdoor wildlife shooting.

    Quote Originally Posted by Neddog View Post
    In particular the JPG files. Of course, the E-510 was very limited in Dynamic Range. I don't know how important that is to you, but the E-3 is no better.
    Thanks for pointing this out! That's what I'd been reading from quite a few people. I have to admit I had difficulty with this on my 510s. I'd gotten the E-30 and it was a bit better (and in the noise department too). For my next camera, I do want better dynamic range and prefer to get as much detail as possible in-camera for my Winter shooting starting next year -- capturing lots of snowy landscapes, ice, etc. with the wildlife.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Baxter View Post
    I have both the E5 and the E3. The E3 has less noise at low ISO and more at high (and the noise is structured with smears and streaks) and is slightly blurry. The E5 has less noise at higher ISO, but still some at low, but the noise is more random and less structured. The E5 is very very very sharp - amazingly so. The difference is a matter of taste, really. You can take perfect pictures at ISO 100 for 8x10" prints with the E3, whereas the noise on the E5 is always there, but it handles bigger enlargements better (even though it is never perfect, the way the E3 can be).
    Hmmm, Interesting, about the noise/ISO and the differences. I had that same "noise and streaks" issue with my 510s at low-light events and concerts. Glad to hear the E-5 is very sharp.

    My wildlife shooting I intend to do would be daytime, not very high ISO/low light and I also intend on eventually making large prints to give as gifts too, maybe a few larger than 8x10 for myself (I have an EPSON R2400).

    As for ergonomics/handling... I've handled an E-3, but not an E-5. I will have the opportunity to try out a friend's E-5 camera sometime next week and see how that factors into the other things considered too.

    Meanwhile I will still be scouting the "For Sale" threads. Thanks again everyone for your input!
    Paula
    PMB Images

    "When your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt."
    ~ Henry J. Kaiser

    E-510 (x 2) || E-30 || EP-L1 || 50-200mm || 14-54mm || 11-22mm || 50mm f2 || EC-14 || EX-25 || FL-36 (x 2) || FL-50 || Hyperdrive 120GB (portable storage)

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by ken610 View Post
    I have or have had all of the bodies in this discussion. I feel that the E-5 is so far superior to the E-3 in terms of IQ, screen viewing, and usability, that I sold both E-3s and got two E-5s. I always want two identical bodies for backup for field work.
    I'm the same way, which is how I'd ended up with my two E-510s long ago for my concert work -- one had the 50-200 on and the other had the 14-54 on and I wear the double-strap setup.

    Eventually I will get two weatherproof cameras. I may still hang onto my other cameras though -- not for sentimental reasons as much as I tend to wear stuff into the ground as long as they're still usable. That, and recruiting some curious friends into photography by them trying out a handy DSLR camera I just happen to have nearby instead of a regular P&S.
    Paula
    PMB Images

    "When your work speaks for itself, don't interrupt."
    ~ Henry J. Kaiser

    E-510 (x 2) || E-30 || EP-L1 || 50-200mm || 14-54mm || 11-22mm || 50mm f2 || EC-14 || EX-25 || FL-36 (x 2) || FL-50 || Hyperdrive 120GB (portable storage)

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    Quote Originally Posted by clint View Post
    When do you want to meet your goals? Now or next year?

    You could always use what you now but just use a lot of common sense while using it in adverse environments. In the rain, snow, or sand storm, just cover it. In the extreme cold, put it inside your coat ever few minutes and keep the gear encased when moving from inside to outside or vice versa. And so on. That worked for many decades for hundreds of photographers.
    I take my E-510 out in some very marginal places and weather conditions all the time.
    I have one of those little umbrellas and a one gallon zip-lock bag with me at all times.
    E-510 IR 665nm, 14-42mm II, 40-150mm II

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    Make me an offer for nmy E-5: Excellent condition, less than 4000 shutter clicks, in the box, paper work, cable release, two batteries and charger. Listed on Buy and Sell--appaprently asked to much. Would really like to sell.

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    Default Re: Need weatherproof camera; Which one?

    There you go Paula... you waited and now the price of the E-5 just went down, lol.
    Olympus E-3 | Olympus E-PL2 PEN | Olympus E-PM1 PEN | Zuiko ED 50-200mm f/2.8-3.5 SWD | Zuiko 14-54mm f/2.8-3.5 | Vivitar 100mm f/2.8 Macro | Carl Zeiss Sonnar 135mm f/2.8 | Konica Hexanon 50mm f/1.4 | Konica Hexanon 85mm f/1.8 | G.Zuiko 50mm f/1.4 | Zuiko 35mm f/3.5 Macro | Zuiko 25mm f/2.8 | KMZ Jupiter-3 50mm f/1.5 | E.Zuiko 200mm f/4 | Zuiko 75-150mm f/4 | Olympus EC-14 teleconverter | VF-2 and VF-3 Viewfinders | EMA-1 Mic Adapter | Olympus FL-36R and FL-50R speedlights

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