Selling the EM5

Any of you that regularly read this Blog will know the issues I have with my Olympus EM5. This is nothing to do with the camera, as we all know how good it is, but more the way I haven’t been able to gel with. The has led me to seriously consider selling it.

I am off to Rome to stay with my good mate Baz. The plan was to take my trusty Nikon and 85mm, but also put the EM5 in my bag with the 45mm, and have a chat to Baz, who is a true advocate of the EM5, to see if he could shed some light why I’m not hitting it off with the EM5.

So yesterday I went to Bath, and considering the weather we have had of late, it was a very nice day. I thought I should give the EM5 a last chance as it would be taking up space, and I could take a couple extra Nikon lenses.

You check it, I've just seen something
You check it, I’ve just seen something

Another friend on Flickr, Esther, is having no issues as you can see on her photostream. Maybe that’s because she has smaller fingers than mine. It is very hard to get used to the small buttons after using the Nikon.

Concentrate on your phone
Concentrate on your phone

The EM5 has a digital viewfinder, which I find is not a patch on the Nikon’s, which is so bright and clear. I’ve missed a lot of shots compared to the Nikon, but it faired well yesterday on the following shot and others.

I had spoken to this guy earlier, that is how I knew he was Spanish, but his English was perfect.

Happy to be with the Spanish guy
Happy to be with the Spanish guy

The shutter is so different to the Nikon too. You get a thud with that, so know that the shot has registered, whereas the shutter button on the EM5 feels quite soft and also quiet, which on the other hand can be an advantage when getting some of the shots in this post.

I waited ages whilst this guy emptied this bin. I thought I would get a shot over the top of the bin, and every time I thought I thought I was going to get one his head would bob down to do something else. I finally got the shot when he was replacing the black bag.

On the job
On the job

I was wondering why this girl was standing so straight and looking at me, as I was pointing the camera at her. She didn’t move at all, even when people walked past. I waited until I had a clear view, and got the shot. Immediately after I got it she turned to her left. It was then that I noticed a man with a camera a good way away from her. She had been standing there for him to take a side profile of her with the Abbey in the background. It was only whilst editing that I realised she wasn’t staring across at me, her eyes were slightly to her right, probably looking to see that it was clear for the shot.

Pretty Young Lady
Pretty Young Lady

The one thing that the EM5 has is the flip out screen, and was one of the reasons I had bought it in the first place. It is a touch screen, and I have found that is the best feature of the camera. When I say it is touch, I mean it is superbly sensitive, and fast. I find that using the screen to take a shot is faster than the shutter button, but that may just be me. Maybe Baz and Esther may confirm that. Martin has an EM1 and he agrees with me on that.

It’s always good to get a few fun shots, and I think these following two fill that brief. These two shots were achieved using the screen.

I have a challenge on Flickr and some people may think I will enter this shot, but they haven’t seen the one I shot with the Nikon yet.

The Big Lick
The Big Lick

Don’t ask, I don’t know, I only took the shot.

I can do Duck impressions
I can do Duck impressions

When shooting “Street”, you often get funny looks or even worse. They can actually make a shot, ask Baz, as he seems to get more than his fair share, but then again that may have nothing to do with photography. This time though, the look wasn’t offensive, it just made me laugh. Hence the title.

Can I help you?
Can I help you?

The one thing I really like about Bath is that there are plenty of benches. Which you will have seen in my previous posts from Bath. This gives great opportunities, with people sitting on the benches,or approaching you. Also it gives the photographer the chance to rest his weary legs. As I have not been feeling too well of late I took full advantage of that.

In her own thoughts
In her own thoughts

Most of the shots in this post were taken whilst sitting on a bench. It wasn’t the only place I went, I did stand up at times. The lady above sat on one of the benches to the side of me, whereas the man below was sitting on the same bench as me.

He was such a happy chappy, who, I don’t think could speak English. A performer started his act along from us. You could see flames and smoke and he shouted out “The shows about to start”. The man turned towards me and said “Show”, and laughed. Then the performer shouted “Come and see the show”. The man looked at me again, smiling, and said “Show”. A lady walked over to his side, who I assumed was his wife. He pointed to the performer, and he said with a big smile, you guessed it, “Show”. If nothing else he will go home having learned one word of English.

Happy to be here
Happy to be here

The next man was also sat on the bench next to me. It means that I have to lean back just to get him in the shot.

Strong Features
Strong Features

This lady was sitting on my right and had people coming back and for to talk to her. She was on her phone when I took this shot, as you can see by the reflection in her Ray Bans.

The Reflecting Phone
The Reflecting Phone

I used the screen it to its full potential for this shot, which I took whilst sitting on a low step. It is one of my favourites of the day as I really like low POV shots.

Striding Forward
Striding Forward

I think I made the right decision to take the EM5 out with me yesterday, and as you can see from the shots above, I am starting to feel a bit more at home with it. It would be a crime to sell it.

So if you took the title to mean I was selling the EM5 to get rid of it, you were hoodwinked. It was a case of selling its positive attributes, by showing the shots.

Needless to say, the EM5 will be joining the Nikon in my arsenal on the trip to Rome, where it will work alongside.

12 thoughts on “Selling the EM5

  1. annadelf

    Thanks, Wayne, for this interesting article, and great illustrating shots! It’s always interesting to see how we question and compare one camera to another. Personally, I LOVE the em5, basically because I can use my favorite 45mm contax lens with it. With that, I have to manually focus, which may seem like a drawback, but I find it’s a question of practice, and the results are worthwhile. The only flaw that I wish they’d fix is to create a full frame camera!

  2. MisterGC

    Very good post Wayne. I didn’t think you were going to flog it just yet!
    I think I know you by now, that you don’t give up that easy and what better way to improve your EM-5 skills than by being taught by Baz himself.
    To be honest if those shots you posted here are from a camera that you can’t gel with, then I can’t wait to see the ones you get when you do gel.
    The tilt screens are great for creative and sneaky shots, the only thing I wish my Sony A6000 did have….or should I say didn’t have is shutter noise, You can’t turn it off, you can only cough loud when taking the shot and hope no one complains to you about spreading your germs on them (Tina:0).

    I just love that side profile shot ‘Strong Features’ that’s my fave of the bunch…..oh and of course the low pov that I’m a sucker for.
    Looking forward to seeing the eating shot from the Nikon ;0)

    • LOL!!! You read my mind with the coughing. I accidentally brushed a woman’s arm as I was passing her on my way to work and I had to whip out the hand sanitizer and sanitize my arm. 😀

  3. Thank you both. Ann you know I am a great admirer of your work. I think my feature in the Featured Photographers shows that, along with yours grant and the others. Ann you shoot with the EM5, so it was seeing yours Ian’s and Baz’s shots that made me take the leap to buy it.

    Grant you have gone along similar lines with the Sony, the difference between us is that you have gelled straight away with your new camera and the Nikon is gathering dust where I have been the other way until now, as I have found it’s a horses for courses way in the future, and I hope to prove that only to you but to myself when in Rome. I’m sure Baz will keep reminding me.

    • MisterGC

      I wanted a small camera with a good sensor so I could maybe grab a shot or two while out on a shoot that could be good enough for the quality required to submit them to my stock photography portfolios…and this one has near enough the same as my d5300.

      The Sony A6000 does have a tilting screen….otherwise I wouldn’t have got the low pov shots I recently uploaded to flickr.
      I’ve also started using it like a 6×6 and sometimes I stand in front of my target, ooops I meant subject, and swipe my finger across the screen a few times to make it look as if I’m searching for something, stop, take the shot and swipe one more time and walk away (see my two ladies on the bench shot)….funny thing is, the A6000 doesn’t even have a touchscreen :0)

      P.S. Vivian who? I am so uneducated in famous street photographers.

  4. Ah, Wayne, I was sure you were joking with this title. You already did it with your 85mm, so now I know how you make the buzz !

    It’s true that the EM-5 is a small camera with tiny buttons, and you need to be used to it to really appreciate his quality. But when you shoot regularly, you are more and more addict to it. Well, I am. For the reasons you describe in your article.

    Hey, I decided to choose this camera in january 2015 because of you, Baz and Ann.
    So now, your challenge is to go to Roma and try to use only the EM-5 for at least one walk !
    Grant, I hesitated a lot with the sony A6000, because the sensor has the same size as a DSLR. But it has no tiltable screen.
    To shoot in the street, I use it a lot now. In fact I use it like a “6X6”, and I imagine I am Vivian Maier, haha !

    • MisterGC

      I wanted a small camera with a good sensor so I could maybe grab a shot or two while out on a shoot that could be good enough for the quality required to submit them to my stock photography portfolios…and this one has near enough the same as my d5300.

      The Sony A6000 does have a tilting screen….otherwise I wouldn’t have got the low pov shots I recently uploaded to flickr.
      I’ve also started using it like a 6×6 and sometimes I stand in front of my target, ooops I meant subject, and swipe my finger across the screen a few times to make it look as if I’m searching for something, stop, take the shot and swipe one more time and walk away (see my two ladies on the bench shot)….funny thing is, the A6000 doesn’t even have a touchscreen :0)

      P.S. Vivian who? I am so uneducated in famous street photographers.

  5. P.S. all your pictures are amazing, of course, as always, whatever the camera you take. You should try an i-phone !!

  6. LMAO! I love “I can do Duck impressions”. It gave me a much needed laugh.

    The shot underneath it “Can I help you?” because of the seriousness of the look on the woman’s face caused me to read the first line as “The one thing I really like about Bath is that there are plenty of b*tches.” lololol.

    “Striding Forward” is indeed an excellent shot. I’m glad you’ve decided not to sell the EM5 as these pictures are superb. If anything, it’s made me want to purchase the EM5 in the future.

  7. Yes the tiltable touchscreen is the business. Grant, whilst you swipe with the EM5 you can touch and the shot is there, that’s what I like about it. Esther, you must find that when people look at you, they don’t think you are taking the shot as you never press the shutter button.

    There is one downside for me. Whereas the viewfinder has a diopter to adjust the clarity, there is no option with the touchscreen. So to see that clearly I have to put my glasses on. Whilst I have them on I can’t see in the distance, so it is a matter of peering over the top of them or just using the screen. I cannot emphasise how responsive the screen is.

    Tina, now they have released the EM5 II, the price for the EM5 is so good. Also due to some people always feeling the need to upgrade, the price of second hand EM 5’s is even better. So maybe a new user in the future. You won’t have any problems with your dainty little fingers, and it is a fraction of the size and weight of the 5d Mk 3.

  8. Esther I will take up your challenge. You knew I would.

    Although I may have to take my Nikon in case I run out of battery! When out with Baz, his battery ran out just as we got to the metro to go home. I checked my Nikon, 87% left. I have 3 batteries for the EM5 though.

  9. Wayne, I also have 3 batteries for the EM-5. It is so frustrating to realise you can’t shoot anymore !

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