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Author Topic: G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts  (Read 6352 times)

neil74

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« on: February 16, 2009, 06:19:00 pm »

For those that are interested I have had a quick play with my new G1 today and am in 2 minds as to whether to keep it. I really like it but there are some issues, I expected some like the lack of focus distance as after all it is a consumer camera. Here are the positive and negatives:

+ Feels really really nice in the hand.
+ Offers SLR quality images in a very compact package *
+ The EVF is very good and more than up to most things with the exception of fast moving subjects.
+ The zoomed manual focus works well and looks nice and clear on the screen.
+I just like it.

- No visible distance scale for manual focus ( I knew about this)
- Noise. Not for normal photos where it is actually pretty good but in indifferent light the shadow detail is not great. I often do some multiple exposures for HDR/enfuse and with the G1 the photos exposed for the highlights look pretty grainy and this is disappointing, they look worse than even my DP1. I expect some grain even with a 5D or D700 as parts of the image are underexposed but still I would have expected better.

- The implementation of AEB is terrible, to cover 1 stop over and under you have to take 7 shots.

- The cost of accessories especially the battery is extortionate. The battery is chipped meaning no 3rd party ones (yet) but the cost for a Panasonic one is 55-70. That's more than a genuine Canon BP511 and this is supposed to be a consumer camera.  The excuse for the chip seems to be safety but I'm sure that the likes of Ansman, hahnel, Energiser etc are more than capable of making a safe battery.


So to keep or not to keep that is the question, I like to keep my landscape and wedding gear separate so my search for a real high quality portable camera may have t continue.


* at low iso and in good light
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DarkPenguin

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2009, 08:10:18 pm »

The shadows are noisy.  Even at low ISO.

I find the wheel to be a bid fiddly.  I end up doing EC adjustments when I want to adjust the apeture.  The af point controls are also pretty fiddly to pop into and are really easy to pop out of.

According to the manual the battery is only good for 330 shots.  So you need to spend and additional 10%+ of the camera price to buy a backup.

That rotating LCD is great.  More companies should offer it.

I like it but it clearly has compromises.
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neil74

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2009, 05:54:51 am »

I am surprised that the noise in the shadows even at low iso was not picked up in any reviews.

I think I may have to ebay it.
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DarkPenguin

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2009, 09:15:14 am »

I haven't worked out how to expose with the camera yet.  Definitely different than my canons.
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250swb

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2009, 04:59:49 pm »

Noise in shadows is often a case of underexposure, so try different metering patterns, then make sure you only process noise in post processing, not 'in camera'. Also for top quality don't be tempted to boost the sharpening, saturation, contrast etc in camera, do these things in pp as well. In fact turn Off noise filter (leave noise reduction On) and lower all the other settings from the default level for JPEGS. If you shoot in RAW ACR (or similar) should bring everything back to normal low noise shadows and unblown highlights (assuming your RAW software does not use/transpose the camera settings).

These are the general rules for all 4/3rds sensors, don't let the camera take over, just use it to record the most information, then allow pp to do the rest for top quality images. For lower quality images the camera setting are usually fine.

Steve

neil74

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #5 on: February 18, 2009, 04:36:54 am »

Quote from: 250swb
Noise in shadows is often a case of underexposure, so try different metering patterns, then make sure you only process noise in post processing, not 'in camera'. Also for top quality don't be tempted to boost the sharpening, saturation, contrast etc in camera, do these things in pp as well. In fact turn Off noise filter (leave noise reduction On) and lower all the other settings from the default level for JPEGS. If you shoot in RAW ACR (or similar) should bring everything back to normal low noise shadows and unblown highlights (assuming your RAW software does not use/transpose the camera settings).

These are the general rules for all 4/3rds sensors, don't let the camera take over, just use it to record the most information, then allow pp to do the rest for top quality images. For lower quality images the camera setting are usually fine.

Steve

I appreciate the advice but no disrespect but I do know what I am doing.  I understand that an underexposed file leads to some noise and these photos are part of a 3 shot bracket for HDR and they are the "under" exposures to capture the sky detail.  They have the look of an underexposed slr image where you have tried to recover the image in PP only I have not touched them.  

I just think that the G1 must struggle in lower light irrespective of the ISO.
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Dale_Cotton2

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2009, 09:17:34 am »

Imaging Resource, living up to its name, provides a set of carefully exposed G1 raws at all ISOs here (scroll to the bottom set of studio shots with the pinwheel of coloured cloth and the British beer bottles). Any potential purchaser concerned about the G1's noise levels can download the appropriate raw files from the G1 and most any other recent dSLR to compare.

Neil: do the noise levels in these studio shots jive with the results you've been getting? What I'm seeing does not differ noticeably from a typical recent APS-C camera until 1600 ISO.
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neil74

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #7 on: February 18, 2009, 12:32:53 pm »

I'll have a look at those.

I could of course have a faulty G1, unlikely but I have not even considered it.

Ok I have tried to upload a crop.  This is was 1/200 @ iso100 and was the under exposure (shot for the sky) of a 3 shot HDR bracket.  These are straight from the raw file, no sharpening and no exposure adjustments.

[attachment=11594:Panasoni...ple_crop.jpg]
« Last Edit: February 18, 2009, 12:35:29 pm by neil74 »
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Er1kksen

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2009, 10:34:58 pm »

If you're thinking about keeping this as your travel/portable camera for landscape, hang on for that 7-14, it's the widest non-FF lens available (other than the normal 4/3 7-14) and it's pretty certain to show up in the second half of 2009, given the prototypes shown and now its appearance in G1 advertisements.

btw, if you haven't brough the exposure up any on that crop, that is kind of atypical for 4/3 sensors. The graininess typically doesn't appear until you raise the exposure. Of course, it could be a side effect of the sensor being perpetually on for live view, which wouldn't be a problem with normal 4/3 cameras.
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neil74

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2009, 03:08:29 am »

Had I recovered the exposure then the noise would be understandable but I did not and other than the crop this is straight from the camera.
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Dale_Cotton2

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2009, 07:28:29 am »

Neil74 wrote:
Quote
Had I recovered the exposure then the noise would be understandable but I did not and other than the crop this is straight from the camera.

Neil: I think you mean straight from the raw converter, not straight from the camera. What converter are you using? If you haven't done so already, you might want to try comparing results converting the same file in another converter. Given my experience with converters, this is the first variable I'd want to eliminate.
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james_elliot

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2009, 08:07:49 am »

Neil, If you happen to have some time available, please could you have a look at this page
http://www.photo-lovers.org/fpsensor.html.en
I would really like to put the G1 black noise results on line.

Thanks.

Quote from: neil74
- Noise. Not for normal photos where it is actually pretty good but in indifferent light the shadow detail is not great. I often do some multiple exposures for HDR/enfuse and with the G1 the photos exposed for the highlights look pretty grainy and this is disappointing, they look worse than even my DP1. I expect some grain even with a 5D or D700 as parts of the image are underexposed but still I would have expected better.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2009, 03:20:56 pm by james_elliot »
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neil74

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2009, 10:41:05 am »

Quote from: james_elliot
Neil, If you happen to have some time available, please could you have a look at this page
http://www.photo-lovers.org/photo/fpsensor.html.en
I would really like to put the G1 black noise results on line.

Thanks.

Cannot access the page.
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Dale_Cotton2

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2009, 11:21:40 am »

Quote from: neil74
Cannot access the page.
For now, go to English language version, then click on the link to Dark Noise Project under the yellow flower pic.
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DarkPenguin

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2009, 01:08:02 pm »

I'm getting similar results between SilkyPix and ACR.  (Although the SilkyPix controls are enough to cause a brain hemorrhage.)  I've found that the fill light slider in ACR is the kiss of death.  With my canons I can wail on that slider without much problem.  Not so much with the G1.
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james_elliot

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #15 on: February 19, 2009, 02:24:39 pm »

Sorry, my mistake:
http://www.photo-lovers.org/fpsensor.html.en

Quote from: neil74
Cannot access the page.
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Misirlou

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #16 on: February 19, 2009, 09:28:38 pm »

Quote from: neil74
I'll have a look at those.

I could of course have a faulty G1, unlikely but I have not even considered it.

Ok I have tried to upload a crop.  This is was 1/200 @ iso100 and was the under exposure (shot for the sky) of a 3 shot HDR bracket.  These are straight from the raw file, no sharpening and no exposure adjustments.

[attachment=11594:Panasoni...ple_crop.jpg]

Well, there isn't much shadow detail there, but it doesn't look unusably noisy to me. How bad does the noise look in prints?
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DarkPenguin

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #17 on: February 21, 2009, 08:34:25 pm »

Bad light and low light seems to be the issue I'm running into.  The G1 is a lot better in decent light.  I haven't had many daylight shots with the camera.  In oddball compact fluorescent lighting I don't trust the camera.  Seems a lot better in other lighting.
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lensfactory

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #18 on: February 21, 2009, 09:49:36 pm »

I finally got my hands on one of these yesterday. It DID kind of confirm what I thought it would....
The camera's rubbish.
It's LOUD(the only possible advantage of a camera like this is that it should be as quiet as my P&S cameras).
The EVF through the finder looks really lousy.
Doesn't shoot video?!?
An overpriced P&S with marginally better quality, and a larger size and price.

Sorry to be rude...but I think the early adopters here are 'dreaming' of the camera it could/should be.
As it stands I guess we'll have to see if Olympus can squeeze this tech into a smaller, P&S type body. Then they may be on to something.

It's like a digital version of the Olympus PEN film camera system.

The fellow at the camera store countered my points by saying it was "2008 camera of the year" award or somesuch. You can see that the hopes and hypes for this new system have more than a few tinting their glasses with rose.
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DarkPenguin

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G1 - Bought one, here are my thoughts
« Reply #19 on: February 21, 2009, 11:15:27 pm »

LOL
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