Random Brain Waves, vol. 14

I’ve been reading many previews of the new Olympus OM-D E-M10. Here’s a sample of what some are saying about the build quality…

“The E-M5 is a gorgeous camera with superb build quality, and the new E-M10 follows right along with the same retro styling and solid construction.”

“… indeed its build also feels less substantial than the EM5.”

“The build quality of this new OM-D doesn’t disappoint. It’s metal on the top and bottom plates, with a metal faux-pentaprism.”

“The E-M10’s dials feel a little less substantial than the E-M5’s – both in terms of the materials used and the ease with which they’re operated. Beyond that, the body has a similarly dense and solid feel to it.”

“The E-M10 also feels very compact and solid in hand. The camera body was actually metal, not plastic and holding it gave me that reassuring and confident feeling.”

“… to put it nicely, this camera is very plastic. It doesn’t feel cheap, but it doesn’t quite feel like the OMD cameras that we’re used to.”

“The Olympus OM-D E-M10 features an all-metal body, despite the lower price point compared to the E-M5 and E-M1.”

Uh… are these reviewers all handling the same camera? Is there a fake Olympus rep running around handing out phoney E-M10s to some folks? Perhaps he made them with a 3-D printer and some plastic milk jugs…

This is why you should take everything you read with one enormous grain of salt. Don’t believe anything you’re told until you verify it for yourself. Get to a camera store, try out stuff, decide if it meets your requirements and expectations, not those of some internet “expert” who has no idea how you shoot, or what you need.

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Carrying on in a similar vein, there are two wonderful posts that you should read over at The Online Photographer. The first, by Ctien, is regarding sensor size. The second, a post first, um… posted back in 1999 by site editor Mike Johnston deals with lens quality.

Thank the heavens for voices of sanity. I’m am so dreadfully tired of the image quality-obsessed harping away that we need more more more, better better better. Bigger sensors, more megapixels, sharper, faster lenses. One such gentlemen I had the misfortune of coming across today proceeded to disparage several pieces of gear from multiple manufacturers… gear which has been routinely praised by many knowledgeable, common sense folks around the web. I was absolutely baffled by some of his criticisms, as they flew in the face of both what others have said, and what my own experiences have told me.

I always go back to a quote from famed nature photographer George Lepp – I’m paraphrasing here, because I don’t recall the precise wording – who said, “I don’t need the sharpest lens, just one that’s sharp enough.” That’s how I feel about all my gear. I don’t need nor want the very best. I only need what helps me fulfill my creative vision. Good is not always the enemy of great. Sometimes good is the facilitator of greatness.

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