A New System

Camera system, that is.

Olympus EPL-2 with Panasonic 20mm f/1.7 pancake lens

This is going to replace my Panasonic DMC-LX3.  The LX3 has a 24-60mm-equiv. lens, which is good (the 20mm is 40mm-equiv. on the new camera). But the LX3 is fixed lens, whereas the EPL-2 is a Micro Four-Thirds camera, which takes interchangeable lenses made by at least 4 companies (plus almost anything else via adapters for manual operation).

And the EPL-2 has a much bigger sensor, and is much better in low light, where I take so many of my snapshots.  In good light the LX3 is great, I even made a 20×30 print of one of my LX3 photos for the decor project at work. But working with the files from Minn-StF meetings or sitting around at home in the evening was no fun at all. I could get snapshots, but little more, usually.

Plus the EPL-2 has extreme toy potential. Micro Four-Thirds has about the shortest flange distance of any lens mount for still cameras; so it’s easy to make mechanical adapters that put the lens the right distance from the sensor.


With 75mm f/1.4 video lens adapted

That’s an effective angle of view matching a 150mm lens on 35mm, a moderate telephoto (Micro Four-Thirds has a 2x crop factor).  At f/1.4.  At least in preliminary testing, this one covers the whole format, too, there’s no major vignetting in the corners or anything. This is a “C-mount” lens, a common mount for old Bolex 16mm cameras and video cameras.   (This is the Pentax/Cosmicar 75mm f/1.4).

And the EPL-2 has in-body image stabilization, so I can hand-hold at rather slow shutter speeds.

I’ve also used it with my old Nikkor 50mm f/1.8 AIS lens.  I’ll try the 70-200/2.8 some day when I’m feeling really evil.  Or maybe the 500/8.

This isn’t aimed at replacing the Nikon DSLR; that’s far superior in low light, and faster at focusing, and more accurate at focus tracking.  Quite possibly better dynamic range, haven’t checked.

With the pancake lens, it’s maybe 1/8″ thicker than the LX3, and it’s much nicer in a lot of ways. If you’re looking for a used LX3, keep your eye on Ebay, I’ve got a few things I need to find all the parts of, photograph, and get listed, including the LX3.

Yeah, failed my saving throw against the Shiny!