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  • Posted on: Panasonic Lumix GX7 Full Review

    I actually got my paws on one of these, but only for a few seconds before it was snatched away... Shame, because it actually feels like a camera, just as my OM-D does. And there's the problem: not enough significant difference for even my ridiculous man-mathematics to make a case for selling the Olympus to buy this little Panasonic.

    One very important point is the in-body, as opposed to in-lens, stability feature. That enables this GX7 to make the best of the Olympus Pen/OM-D lenses.
    • 14 Aug 2013 5:03PM
  • Posted on: Olympus XZ-1 Review

    After the first few weeks I am even more convinced I made the right decision. It's a great camera, it really is, with no negatives anywhere, not even skin tones printed in web magazines...

    The only problem is that I got so involved with a friend's Samsung EX1 I bought one of those as well. I've not yet tested the skin-tone reproduction in web-magazine performance, such a basic area to investigate, on the Samsung, but it's great fun. There are some great cameras in the Advanced Compact segment. Absent manufacturers could have regrets.

    I never thought I would use and praise any non-reflex digital cameras. The Canon G11 made the first crack in my resolve, and now most major manufacturers offer similar cameras. Olympus and the Samsung may be in front today but, surely, that will not last long without constant improvement. It's all very interesting.
    • 1 May 2011 4:26PM
  • Posted on: Samsung EX1 Serious Compact Review

    Excellent all round. I have one and I love it. It has no weak "subject", from macro to seascapes. The electronics are very good and pretty intuitive, given that there's a lot there. But it just works so very well as a camera. Making pictures is very rewarding indeed; image quality is superb. Materials and manufacturing are clearly of the highest quality.
    • 1 May 2011 3:55PM
  • Posted on: Canon Powershot S95 Review

    I borrowed an S95 to see if an Advanced Compact camera was for me. On all the "ease of use, quality of product" questions it did its job of opening my mind to what such a camera can do. Even so there were many strange omissions, the most glaring being the plain black plastic where the flash hot-shoe should have been.

    The biggest omission of all was in the lack of inspiration, as if the camera had been designed by and for use by robots. I could not imagine myself using an S95 for longer than a trial period. Even so I would rather have an S95 than a Micro Four Thirds. It works just as well as an Olympus Pen, maybe better with its juicier lens and apertures, is much more pocketable, and costs a lot less. In the end I had to choose between the Olympus XZ-1 and the Samsung EX1, couldn't, so I bought both. And I have no regrets at all.
    • 1 May 2011 3:33PM
  • Posted on: Panasonic Lumix GH2 Micro 43rds Review

    The adapter plus lens argument in favour of CSCs is an "enthusiasts only" argument. It is far from being the main thread of advertising for these products. As a direct and intended result of said advertising people who do not know better are wasting money on camera bodies for which they do not buy enough lenses and/or good enough lenses.

    The increasing choice of increasingly good Advanced Compacts tells me that the industry as a whole knows what it should be selling to "discerning snappers", and is aware that there could be a back-lash. You can fool a lot of the people a lot of the time; beware of what happens when they "un-fool" themselves.

    I have a good quality lens which starts at 28mm, f:1.8 and ends at 112mm, f;2.5 on a 370 camera. How much would a lens like that, and the body to give it life, cost for a victim of CSC advertising?
    • 28 Apr 2011 6:19PM
  • Posted on: Panasonic Lumix GH2 Micro 43rds Review



    Where's the reflex component? It's another Compact System Camera or Interchangeable Lens Compact of which the vast, vast majority will spend their lives with just one lens, with poor to awful aperture values, stuck for good on their mounts. Rather than spend a lot of money on a product which becomes poor and expensive because of the way it is used people liable to fall into that self-dug trap should buy an Advanced Compact.

    I am no longer able to manipulate body and lenses of any denomination, after decades of SLR and DSLR. I bought an Advanced Compact with excellent aperture values and a high visibility screen, (I failed a test with the EVF of a Canon G12...), and I am having enormous fun for less than the cost of a DSLR short zoom lens.

    (OK, I confess: I kept the SLR... and I take it out with just one lens from its set. It's a sentimental thing.)
    • 27 Apr 2011 11:08PM
  • Posted on: Nikon Coolpix P300 Digital Camera Review

    Well I am still extremely satisfied with what an Olympus XZ-1 is doing to help an old photography nut get over being forced to retire his DSLR outfit. But it strikes me that a P300 could be in my jacket pocket if the XZ-1 had not received such positive reviews. When a designer specifies a good lens there is hope!
    • 17 Apr 2011 12:42PM
  • Posted on: Panasonic LX5 vs Canon S95 vs Nikon P300

    Excellent review. Thank you. All in all I will buy an Olympus XZ-1, although the LX5 runs it mighty close. I have not worked without an external flash for 40 years, and I already have an Olympus FL-36R, so the prices match, and the Olympus work I have seen has inspired me more than the work folk have posted from the Panasonic. It would be mighty difficult to separate LX5 from XZ-1 without that comparison. Comments from people who have not had both cameras for long enough to present a body of work are unreliable in this extremely finely balanced case.

    To get a feel for these advanced compacts I borrowed a Canon S90, and I am surprised that a quick-reaction firm like Canon has not addressed certain shortcomings of the S90, like not having a hot-shoe, when designing the S95. It could have been a contender.
    • 6 Apr 2011 7:12PM
  • Posted on: Olympus XZ-1 Review

    Thank you for such a thorough and limpid review. I have been forced to look for a lighter camera than my Olympus DSLR, and I can see I will have as much enjoyment from an XZ-1 as I did with that DSLR, albeit not always the same fun. I was pleased to read in the manual that I can use the same exterior flash, because the link between an Olympus body and an Olympus flash must be one of the best around, at a reasonable cost, of course.

    I've been looking for any negative which would put an end to my intent to buy an XZ-1, and all I have found are positives which have convinced me to go ahead and buy. I have seen a lot of impressive work, with fabulous IQ and an insight into the inspiring potential of the in-camera processing, but this review is the tipping point, the end of searching and the start of buying. Off I go with my plastic in my trembling paw!
    • 6 Apr 2011 1:19PM

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