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01-22-2015, 03:26 PM   #76
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My new Q-S1 has arrived. First impressions were that it felt very plasticky. However, with battery charged up, 02 lens attached, effect 1 switched to Bold Monochrome, I've been taking random shots of nonsense around the house. Camera already starting to feel more solid in my hands. Picture quality and LCD seem great. Night-time here, so cannot test in daylight until tomorrow. Looking forward to it. A worthwhile thread, many thanks.

01-28-2015, 11:14 AM   #77

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QuoteOriginally posted by reh321 Quote
Over the years I have developed a number of photographic "needs"
1. outside views (qualilty of picture primary requirement)
2. inside views (needs external flash to do right)
3. quick grab ("look what the cat is doing")
4. pocket-able (so I always have something other than cell phone with me)
5. museums (needs lots of wide-angle)
6. birds & butterflies (wife's hobby, needs lots of telephoto)
7. real railroads (my hobby, needs quick focus and high shutter speed)

For years I have had two cameras, because i found that just one could not do an adequate job for all these purposes. In 2006 I tried to go with one camera; I bought a compact camera in February, but by Black Friday I gave up on this compromise and bought a Canon Elph (for purposes 3,4) and a Canon Rebel (for the other purposes), because it could use the lenses from my last film camera. Typically I have used a camera for around ten years (my primary camera for 1984-1995 was a Pentax Super Program; my primary camera for 1995-2006 was a Canon EOS Elan), so by last fall I had come to the point of feeling that I really did need to think what the next pair would be. At another photo site, there is a subgroup that has gotten nice Bird&Butterfly pictures (always my weakest area) using a Canon SX-50, so when the SX-60 came out and SX-50 prices plummeted, I briefly considered it, but I couldn't figure out how to meet my other needs with just one other camera. However, that got me started thinking about the Pentax Q-family, because it's sensor is similar in size to that of the SX-50, so it might be able to fill the B&B niche for me, but it's body is small enough that it might be able to fill the pocket-able niche also. Frankly, there are people here who almost talked me out of this idea ("don't try to make it do what it wasn't meant for"), but with the help of others I was able to work out accommodations.

This brings me back to the initial question: For several reasons, such as image quality, focus speed, and wide-angle, I may eventually find myself buying another camera (such as a K-50) to meet my needs 1,5,7, but for its price the Q7 is a remarkably versatile camera if you are willing to work with its short-comings. For example, I bought an enlarging hood because I was having trouble seeing in sunlight and I was having trouble focusing adapted lenses. I got a good deal on a "used like new" Q7 (I had decided on silver/black, but a yellow/black Q7+02+06 was available for $280) which left room in my budget for the 01 lens needed to make it pocket-able. I already had some lenses from non-autofocus cameras, so I bought adapters for them. I also had several generic manual flashes from the days when I used the Pentax Super Program.

So, to answer the original question, the Q's small sensor creates problems for very-wide-angle pictures and for Image Quality (if you are one of those who judges large prints with a magnifying glass), and until the weather improves I will list "focus quickness" as "not yet known". I am not ready to call the Q7 a "mini-SLR", but I believe that there are various niches that it does do very well in, however.
Today was sunny, the temperature was almost up to freezing, and the Amtrak train was late enough for me to see it conveniently, so I finally did my first "focus quickness" test as promised above. The train was moving relatively slowly the block before the station, so this was a limited test, but the few pictures I took were correctly focused, so now I would list "focus quickness" as "adequate". I would no longer be nervous taking pictures under those circumstances if the Q7 were the only camera I had with me ... but this is definitely an area for which I would prefer to use a DSLR insttead of my Q7.

However, I was very much aware that the LCD "froze" (and not because of the weather), when I pressed the shutter button halfway to prepare for taking the actual picture; if I did take other pictures under those circumstances, I would need to do a better job of anticipating the picture than I currently do. What causes that "freezing"? Does the processor have to concentrate on focusing so it doesn't have time to update the LCD?
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Last edited by reh321; 02-16-2015 at 08:59 PM. Reason: add picture
02-16-2015, 08:29 PM   #78
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Going from a k-5/DA* combo to a Q7/02/06 combo for a vacation back to a k3/DA*..... If I hadn't been spoiled by the DA*'s I would be perfectly happy with the Q7. There was certainly something fun about it and I took it with me more often than I take my K3 kit. But as a Travel Camera, I found that I only used the 06 maybe twice and wished I had a more compact, collapsible lens camera like the mx-1 or the sony rx100.
That being said, if I was to completely ditch my dslr kit, I would replace it with a q kit and have no regrets. But as a complement to a dslr kit, I feel that I would be better off with a pocket-able compact like the rx-100.

For some reason though, I really miss shooting with my Q7. There is indeed something fun about it.
02-17-2015, 01:20 PM - 1 Like   #79
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I cam from a fuji x100, which is in a category on its own compared to the Q7 that I recently purchased.

I woudn't call it a disappointment but I do sometimes miss the IQ of the fuj in high iso but I understand that the Q7 can only take it so far when it comes to IQ on high iso. That's the only big difference for me.

I've only had the Q7 for a short time but one of the things I noticed that are similiar to the fuji is that they have great menu design. I didn't have much of an issue using the Q7 from the get go. One of the things that bugged with the fuji was the AF in lowlight, I just cannot make it work. I had doubts that the Q7 would be able to do better but I feel it actually does, when I'm using it. I tried my sisters olympus camera, horrible menu design.

The story on why I got the Q7 was that I thought my fuji x100 was broken, it got splashed with mud during a recent trip and I sent it to fuji to see how much it would cost to repair it. Unfortunately it was gonna more than what I wanted to pay for. So I started looking for another camera, the Q7 caught my eye as it follows the same body design as the x100. The retro look has helped me shoot street photos tremendously.

One of the reasons why I got the x100 was to avoid GAS, having a fixed lens keeps me away from review sites and makes me shoot more. The Q7 also fit this bill since the current lenses are more than enough to cover different shooting styles. I was gonna hold of on the Q7 until I see the prices drop. I got a really good deal for a 2nd hand premium kit that contains 01, 02, 03, 06,08 a bunch of batteries for $900. For $900 I didn't need to look at review sites ever again.

I ditched my DSLR for a fuji x100 because I got tired lugging a DSLR around. I found that when you have your DSLR with you, it gives you a different mindset when you are wandering about, you get this urge that since you are carrying a serious piece of equipment that you should be striving to get better pictures when you're outside. Now that's cool and all but when I'm outside I like to enjoy what I see and the experience I get from it. Carrying a DSLR for me was just too distracting, instead of taking in what's happening with my surroundings and enjoy travelling I was focused on just taking pictures. The fuji x100 gives me the right balance on enjoying my travel and enjoying my hobby at the same time. The Q7 does the exact same thing. I think this is the sole reason that Q7 owners say that its a fun camera, because it never gets in the way, its a very chill camera.

I stll have my fuji x100 and managed to repair after I bought my Q7 kit. Now I have a weird dual body setup, a 35mm aps-c and a Q7 that can have a telephoto or wide angle. I can think of any reason why I would need to dual wield bodies but I find it funny that I can have this setup if I want to.

02-24-2015, 02:06 PM   #80
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for me there is one thing:
I had the expectation to use my old (mostly manual) telephoto lenses along with the 5,5-factor of the Q.
That seems not practical for me because with 200 - 300mm lenses the field of view is just too narrow to use it handheld.
Therefore I bought the 06 additionally.

I knew that I shouldn't use too much from higher ISO.

Although I have both zoom-lenses, I pretty much prefer the prime and the fisheye.
Pics just seems more crispy, punchy.

But again: even with the 5-15 I can shoot directly into the sun and get photos that are better than with most dslr-lenses - Canon, Nikon, Sigma, Tamron - and Pentax 18-55 WR ;-)
02-24-2015, 02:29 PM   #81

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QuoteOriginally posted by pleo Quote
Although I have both zoom-lenses, I pretty much prefer the prime and the fisheye.
Pics just seems more crispy, punchy.
The third zoom lens, the 08 Wide Zoom, is not cheap,
but it also produces superb images that are "crispy" and "punchy".
06-04-2015, 09:32 AM - 2 Likes   #82

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I've had my Q7 Premium Kit for less than a week, so I don't think I've had time to fully and properly evaluate it. However. . . Recently I've owned a K-01, a K-5 II, a MX-1 and an Olympus E-M5. I think that gives me a pretty wide basis for comparison.

The reigning king of this collection was the E-M5. It's nimble and responsive, versatile, luxurious. From a hardware standpoint it has everything: flippy screen, touch screen (which I turned off, but some like it), EVF, metal body, metal dials, weather sealing, 9 FPS drive mode, very good IQ and high-ISO performance... Even the shutter sound is cool. The body size is smaller -- but not much smaller -- than my old 35mm SLRs. From where I sit, this is tough to beat. However, I've cracked the vulnerable LCD twice, and also had persistent problems with the battery contacts.

The whole Q7 Premium Kit packs into a bag roughly the same size as the E-M5 with it's kit lens attached, and cost me about half as much.

Build quality of the Q7 is solid and well-executed, just not nearly as "luxo" as the E-M5. The leaf shutters in the lenses are super-quiet. The black Q7 is a real stealth camera. The E-M5 is beautiful, and I am happy to show it off. The Q7 or Q-S1 is more about not being seen or noticed -- unless you got, you know, a bright pink one or something.

When it comes to firmware features and user interface, the Q7 walks all over the E-M5. It's much simpler and more natural to operate, and it has: focus peaking, in-camera RAW development, more art filters, in-camera post-application of art filters, smart modes, interval shooting, HDR shooting, highlight correction, shadow correction, not to mention menus that I can easily understand and navigate. And, oh yeah, the Quick Dial! All this is foreign to the E-M5.

The Q7's image quality is not as good as the E-M5. It's not going to handle low light or fast action like the bigger camera with the bigger sensor. As a photographer, you are going to notice this. Even if the difference is subtle (and it is), we've been trained to pixel-peep and evaluate cameras with a high emphasis on image quality. Let's remember that ordinary people do not look at photos that way. Also, let's not forget that the Q7 can match flagship DSLRs of not-that-many years ago. I am not finding this to be a problem.

The biggest shortcoming is... The LCD. I mean the lack of a viewfinder. The E-M5 made me a believer in EVFs. Out in the bright sun, I can increase the brightness of the Q7's display, and I can wear a black shirt, and I can use a Hoodman loupe, and these various tricks will make it usable. With the E-M5 all I have to do is raise the EVF to my eye, and all is good. It's not only about being able to see and compose in bright light. I find it also has an advantage in evaluating the exposure and setting exposure compensation. With an LCD (and no loupe), ambient light makes it tough to evaluate whether the camera is flubbing the exposure of a high-contrast scene. Of course there are various ways to deal with that too (such as bracketing). It's just not as convenient.

The Q7 is not really pocketable with a lens on it (except the 07, haha!), but I was surprised to learn it uses the same battery as my Fujifilm REAL 3D W3 stereo camera, which does easily slip into my pocket. If you haven't shot 3D photos and put them up on a big-screen 3D TV, you don't know what you're missing. So, there's a bit of unexpected synergy with these two cameras.

I am not sure what role the Q7 is ultimately going to fill here. I've gotten rid of a bunch of cameras lately, and I'm also deliberately setting the E-M5 aside for a while and using the Q7 as much as possible, in order to quickly learn my way around it. For those of us who are not professional photographers, I don't think it would be crazy to have a Q7 or Q-S1 as your only system camera. Whether I'll end up there is an open question, as I'm not under any kind of pressure to ditch the Olympus.
06-04-2015, 03:09 PM   #83
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Nice write up. For me I wish the focus peaking color can be changed to something else. That white peaking color is difficult for me. I also wish of course that the sensor has better iso and dynamic performance but I am asking too much from a small sensor camera. I M fine with without evf on the camera however. Battery life is a concern too.

06-18-2015, 02:39 PM   #84
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QuoteOriginally posted by kentishrev Quote
I have a K-30 I am very happy with, and a GR that I keep in my pocket at all times. The GR took some getting used to, but now enjoy taking pictures with it - and the image quality is fantastic. I love the K-30, and have acquired a good set of S/H lenses to keep me busy.

For me, the gap is a travel camera that is more versatile than the fixed-lens GR. I've been looking at the Q7 with the 02 and 06 lenses (cheaper than the QS-1 and, according to everything I've read, the same internals as the Q7). I can see this would be a far more lightweight camera kit for travel, and not as restrictive as the GR wide-angle. Reviews for the Q7 are very variable, and I cannot tell if the image quality, or anything else, is significantly worse than a DSLR (the K-30), or just if you are a pixel-peeper.

Has anyone gone from a DSLR to the Q7? And what was the biggest disappointment (if any)?
Dunno about DSLR to Q7, but my biggest disappointment from DSLR to the original Q is the speed. It takes FOREVER to turn on, FOREVER between shots, and FOREVER to view photos after taking a shot. Switching to JPEG instead of RAW+ makes it faster.... but Raw gives me much more control over noise.

06-18-2015, 04:15 PM   #85
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QuoteOriginally posted by Tony Belding Quote
I am not sure what role the Q7 is ultimately going to fill here. I've gotten rid of a bunch of cameras lately, and I'm also deliberately setting the E-M5 aside for a while and using the Q7 as much as possible, in order to quickly learn my way around it. For those of us who are not professional photographers, I don't think it would be crazy to have a Q7 or Q-S1 as your only system camera. Whether I'll end up there is an open question, as I'm not under any kind of pressure to ditch the Olympus.
I found your comments about going from the E-M5 to a Q7 interesting as I am following the threads of some who have gone from the Q7 to the E-M10 which is slightly smaller than your E-M5..
06-18-2015, 04:41 PM   #86
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I have pretty much given up pixel peeping with the Q. I will wait until I'm home and then run through the photos on the display screen to dump those I have no intention of keeping. I can be pretty ruthless at this stage. If there are some photos that I think would benefit from the on-camera filters, I will make those changes right in the camera. Then I pull the card and insert it into my Epson Quickmate Printer and print the photos. I don't even open up my computer yet. My keeper rate is not that wonderful so there usually are not a lot of photos to print.

After I finish printing I go through the 4x6 photos and pick out those I want to keep, post process or enlarge. This has worked out great and keeps me from getting too crazy with the files. Since I can delete photos right on the printer screen, by the time I fire up Lightroom I have pretty much done my initial edit. There will always be a few that make it through which were not obviously fuzzy in a 4x6 but become pretty obvious on the big screen.

The biggest disappointment I have run into is when I want to crop. I find that I have to be much more careful with Q or Q7 files because they won't stand up to a lot of cropping. I do think this has been good for my photography and forces me to really think through my compositions. I really don't worry too much about cropping so I can get a bit lazy sometimes with my 645D.

Last edited by Pioneer; 06-18-2015 at 04:44 PM. Reason: clarification

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