Is the Olympus E-620 dSLR a good buy?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Lazy Photographer, Jul 7, 2009.

  1. Lazy Photographer

    Lazy Photographer TPF Noob!

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    I've been using a crappy little p & s for some time now and am ready to upgrade to something better. I should point out that my current p & s has little by way of manual settings. Mostly it's point, and shoot. In other words, when it comes to things like f-stops and shutter speeds and white balance and wide angle lenses and all those other things, I'm definitely a neophyte. To be honest, dSLRs intimidate me. But, if I want to up my game, I'll need to up my equipment.

    First I was thinking a Nikon D5000, but after some research decided the D90 would better fit the bill. Then I came across this review of the new Olympus E-620. Great review; plus the camera is much less money.

    Anyway, long story long, I thought I'd get your opinions on this camera. I mostly shoot wide angle landscape shots. I like close up shots too. Mostly artsy type stuff. Well, artsy to me, maybe crappy to others. I'll definitely be looking into getting prints made between 8x10 to 20x30. The price point's sweet, but maybe there's something better in the same price range. Or should I simply splurge on the D90?

    Good Review of Olympus E-620 dSLR
    Just Posted: Olympus E-620 in-depth review: Digital Photography Review

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. TheOtherBob

    TheOtherBob TPF Noob!

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    I don't use one and therefore can't offer specific experience, or point out particular features that one camera has and the other lacks -- but there are a few things to think about just generally:

    1. Lenses. I'd bet good money that the E-620 body is capable of taking great wide-angle and macro (close up) shots, and can produce images suitable for large prints...but to do that you also need lenses. You should look at Olympus's line of lenses, and consider whether they include the lenses that do what you want to do, at prices that fit your budget. You're not just buying a camera -- you're buying a camera system. The scuttlebutt I've heard is that the current options for lenses for Olympus are a little limited, and the price points perhaps a little high -- but that's third hand, so your mileage may vary.

    2. Handling. The reviews say good things about the small size, but sometimes a smaller camera isn't right for everyone. It's worth handling one to see how it feels, and if it fits in your hands well.

    3. Coolness. Forget this "Nikon" or "Olympus" stuff -- you'd just look cooler with a Canon. I don't know what it is -- something about that neck strap just draws in attractive women. (Ok, just kidding about that last one.)

    In the end, the Olympus is almost certainly a fully capable camera that would serve you well. It may well be the case that one camera would serve you better than another -- but for the most part, my view is that all of the DSLRs out there today do a great job, and that you can't go too wrong with any of them.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'm a Nikon guy but my attractive woman actually owns this camera. It's rather nice. Has a basic interface that's quick to learn and would be familiar to first time DSLR users.

    One problem I see with Olympus is their lack of enthusiast lenses. Their 70-200mm f/2.8 equivalent is a superb piece with a ludicrous price. But even their cheaper entry level lenses are quite good.

    One thing to note is that it uses the 4/3rds system and being slightly smaller sensor than APS-C that Nikon and Canon's have, it also means smaller lenses and a different crop factor from the normal 1.5x that is quoted around the net when talking lenses and digital cameras.
     
  4. Lazy Photographer

    Lazy Photographer TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for your thoughts. Re. the 4/3rds system, yeah I was aware of that and it does concern me a bit. Plus, rumour has it that the next incarnation of Panasonic's outstanding LX3 p & s will be a 4/3rds camera ala the Olympus E-P1 (due Q3 this year). One issue I didn't mention (because maybe it'll turn out to be a non-issue) is my concern about camera size and lugging around gear. I'm worried that with a dSLR I won't be as inclined to take it with me everywhere. I'm very attracted to the idea of a small p & s with PQ near that of a larger dSLR. I think it would get more use, at least from me. On the other hand (that's why God gave us two, right), if I want to take photography courses to help up my game, I'll need a dSLR, as most courses are based on such equipment. It's a real hand wringer, let me tell ya.
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Around here, at least in the school system (including the JC level), film cameras are required in photography classes. Mainly to acquaint people with darkroom developing and printing techniques.
     
  6. I am impressed again and again with Olympus dSLRs when I read about them. I own a Canon system, but if I had to start again I would probably buy Olympus. Weather-sealing, anti-shake, small size, really interesting and useful shooting modes, tiny lenses... a street-shooters dream.
     

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