GF1 vs E-P2: Image Quality & Key Features
Panasonic GF1 vs Olympus E-P2 review – Key Features
1. Smallest, lightest interchangeable system camera
Marginally smaller than any other camera with multiple lenses, the GF1 is for those looking to travel light
2. HD Movie
The GF1’s AVCHD Lite captures 720p in an optimum format and outputs at a PAL-optimised 25fps; perfect for pro-looking ‘movie-like’ results.
3. Peripheral Defocus
A scene mode that allows for a cursor to be pin-pointed on screen to provide focus to that area.
4. Intelligent Auto
As well as full manual controls, Panasonic’s iA means the camera is fully capable of automatically recognising and applying scene modes.
5. Pop-up Flash
A user-controlled pop-up flash means the hotshoe is free for connecting other accessories, such as the optional electronic viewfinder.
6. RAW + Jpeg
Like a DSLR it’s possible to shoot Raw, Jpeg or Raw + Jpeg in a burst mode of 3fps (up to 7 Raw files before buffer is full)
Like the E-P1 before it, the E-P2 is an all-black version that doesn’t lose sight of its 50-year old roots from the original Olympus Pen.
2. HD Movie
Capturing 720p HD movies at 30fps and saving in AVI format, the E-P2 is capable of more than just stills shooting.
3. In-camera Stabilisation
A potential clincher in purchasing, the E-P2 has in-camera stabilisation to ensure sharp images whatever lens is on the front.
4. Art Modes
As per Olympus’s DSLR cameras, the Art modes provide an array of options to add retro, film grain and other effects to your images.
5. ISO 6400
High-sensitivity up to ISO 6400 provides great potential for low-light shooting with full-size output.
6. RAW + Jepg
Making the most out of your pictures is easy, with Raw shooting available as well as Jpeg or a simultaneous capture of both at up to 3fps (to 10 Raw files).
Panasonic GF1 vs Olympus E-P2 review – Image Quality
GF1 vs EP2 – Exposure & Tone
The E-P2 offers the usual spot, multi- or centre-weighted exposure modes, but also adds highlight and shadow spot modes for particular exposures. Potentially very useful, bar the autofocus often not combining to focus on the spot area, thus causing issues. The Panasonic also has the three usual exposure modes, and is much more responsive in conjunction with autofocus or when exposure locking to pinpoint an exposure area. The E-P2 can lead to frustration by comparison.
GF1 vs EP2 – Colour & White Balance
On screen and in image the GF1’s auto white balance does lean towards the cooler, bluer-end of the spectrum. By contrast the E-P2 is much warmer, which is more pleasing and yet overly magenta at times.
Both models offer different in camera colour and effects – the Olympus has ‘Art Modes’ and the Panasonic ‘My Colour’ mode. The Art Modes are often a little overstated and, generally speaking, the My Colour modes from the GF1 show much more practical use.
GF1 vs EP2 – Image Noise
The Olympus offers the higher sensitivity, up to ISO 6400 – though, realistically, with colour noise banding and pronounced grain, it’s not hugely useful. Head to head on the other ISO settings however and it is the E-P2 that has the finer-grain detail over the GF1.
Panasonic GF1 vs Olympus E-P2 – ISO sensitivity and image noise – click for full size gallery
GF1 vs EP2 – Raw & Jpeg
Both models are supported by the latest Adobe Camera Raw for Photoshop, or come with individual software packages to read and convert Raw files.
The E-P2’s ORF Raw files show negligible difference to its JPEG equivalents, except for some pleasing in-camera sharpening. The GF1’s JPEG images are sharper, more saturated and slightly darker than its RW2 Raw counterparts.