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04-24-2012, 04:47 PM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by TigerLord Quote
Short of extra battery use and the lack of DoF preview, why don't most semi-pro/pro photographers use LV?
I only used the LV feature of SLRs when mounting the camera on a tripod for focusing on the moon. I was zooming in to maximum magnification to make sure I don't focus past the moon. It was useful for that.

For regular use, I just found LV to be poorly implemented in DSLRs - slow refresh rate and a flicker at high magnification did not combine well with handholding.

That being said, I've been using the LCD screen of my Olympus E-PL2 for the past 5 months and now I feel weird about using a viewfinder at all.


QuoteOriginally posted by Cannikin Quote
By far the most important thing for me is stability: 2 points of support (hands) vs. 3 points (hands + face) plus added stability from keeping your elbows tucked in rather than suspended out in the air.
Nobody is forcing your elbows away from your body when using the LCD screen. The camera doesn't need to cover your face anymore, so there is no need to hold it at that height.

04-25-2012, 02:00 AM   #17
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Not sure how fast the LV is on a K-5, but when shooting through LV on a K-x, (even by shifting AF to PDAF where the mirror has to flip down and flip up again) it's just really, really slow. Misses a lot of moments. I only use LV when light is too low for my eyes, and when using manual lenses with thin DoFs (e.g. M 50 1.4)
04-25-2012, 03:52 AM   #18
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For me, and this is from someone who has used both a DSLR and a compact Bridge camera (with electronic view finder) for years, there are multiple points to consider

As many have mentioned, for low light, nothing beats an optical viewfinder, the same is true whe using long lenses, the correct technique for shooting makes use of the fact that your camera is against your eye, and although it seems as if there is no real support there, it stabalized the camera to a great extent. Holding the camera away from your body with long and/or heavy lenses leads to shake and blurred images. Also using live view induces shutter lag

Live view has uses when on a tripod, or when you can't hold the camera at eye level and get a shot, here however, the real benefit would be if the rear viewing screen could be rotated (on Pentax it cant)
04-25-2012, 06:17 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
As many have mentioned, for low light, nothing beats an optical viewfinder,
That depends on how low is the light. I find that LV on all my digicams normalizes light levels, dimming the bright and amplifying the dim.

QuoteQuote:
Also using live view induces shutter lag
No argument there. LV on my K20D is NOT good for active subjects.

QuoteQuote:
Live view has uses when on a tripod, or when you can't hold the camera at eye level and get a shot, here however, the real benefit would be if the rear viewing screen could be rotated (on Pentax it cant)
Sometimes tripod+LV usage in a bright environment also requires a wide-brim hat or that traditional black cloth. LV is of course mandatory with IR-modified cameras. And yes, a rotating screen is a great help.

04-25-2012, 07:55 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
As many have mentioned, for low light, nothing beats an optical viewfinder,
QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
That depends on how low is the light. I find that LV on all my digicams normalizes light levels, dimming the bright and amplifying the dim.
Although the light level is "normalized" and I cant argue that point, my experience with Electronic Viewfinders in low light is that the image noise is so high, that the image is almost impossible to identify out of the noise.

I will however conceed that as sensors improve this is becoming less of an issue, and in extreme cases the amplification might actually help in seeing something out of nothing, but I am not yet convinced that an electronic viewfinder is yet at the quality of an optical one for low light.

Also, when manually focusing the sharper although dim image in the viewfinder is easier to deal with than a noisy one on the LCD and AF still struggles in low light with live view
04-25-2012, 08:14 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ole Quote
You cannot really see what's on the screen in strong light so your compositions become, well, not compositions. And it helps reduce camera shake to not to have to hold the camera out in front of you like a cheap phone with a built in so-called camera...
In my experience neither is really true at focal lengths 135mm and below. Above 135mm I need the 3rd point of contact, i.e. my brow ridge, to stablize the camera. The PDAF vs. CDAF issue is real, so there is merit to needing a viewfinder for moving subjects.
  1. At max brightness the K-01 LCD is easil;y viewable in any light Ia hve encountered
  2. Held properly (classic SLR grip) the K-01 can be made as stable as a viewfinder camera
Consequently, neither alternative is universally the better alternative. Each has its strengths and weaknesses. In my case foucs peaking on live view is a significant aid to my deteriorating vision. Shooting that requires a viewfinder certainly isn't fun and is only marginally possible.
04-25-2012, 10:27 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
Although the light level is "normalized" and I cant argue that point, my experience with Electronic Viewfinders in low light is that the image noise is so high, that the image is almost impossible to identify out of the noise.
Note that LiveView in this thread is strictly about using the LCD screen, not about the use of an EVF:

QuoteOriginally posted by TigerLord Quote
"Why do you keep using the [viewfinder] instead of the screen on the back?" (his exact words were the "hole for the eye thingy..." )
04-25-2012, 10:51 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Note that LiveView in this thread is strictly about using the LCD screen, not about the use of an EVF:
I was about to say the same thing. An EVF solves most of the problems associated with a rear LCD, which is why all the serious* MILCs** have one.

(*OK, controversial)
(**Someone should register MILChunter.com - wanted ads for mirrorless cameras. Or not.)

04-25-2012, 05:52 PM   #24
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Live view is awful for composing and aiming and focusing. It is useful for judging exposure and contrast range.
04-25-2012, 08:04 PM   #25
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This is an interesting thread. As a relative newbie (bought my K-r last September), my simple answer is that I take better pictures through the viewfinder over the LCD screen. I didn't know the technical reasons why, it's just what I had noticed. It's been really interesting to read that there are real reasons why the viewfinder can trump the LCD.

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04-25-2012, 10:06 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by Pål Jensen Quote
Live view is awful for composing and aiming and focusing.
Wanna bet? Try to compose, aim, and focus a shot like this with an optical viewfinder:



Just make sure there are no people around, or they'll think you're having a heart attack or something.
04-25-2012, 10:58 PM   #27
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I never missed Live view on my K200D, which doesn't do video.

I use the viewfinder for stills even though my K-r and T3i both have live view.

However, for shooting video, the LCD screen, ie. Live view is the way to go - and the only option actually.
04-25-2012, 11:52 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Wanna bet? Try to compose, aim, and focus a shot like this with an optical viewfinder:



Just make sure there are no people around, or they'll think you're having a heart attack or something.
Accepted, however I tried exactly this kind of shot yesterday with LV and it still took 6 tries to get the framing I wanted because the bloody LCD isn't articulated! Impossible to see at that angle without getting my knees down in the wet grass.
04-26-2012, 01:02 AM   #29
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I often use the LV in lowlight, that's the only way i can manual focus the Sigma 30 f/1.4, the viewfinder is then too dark to really see what you're doing.
04-26-2012, 06:43 AM   #30
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QuoteOriginally posted by Laurentiu Cristofor Quote
Wanna bet? Try to compose, aim, and focus a shot like this with an optical viewfinder:



Just make sure there are no people around, or they'll think you're having a heart attack or something.
Still is awful and would never do that. This image need a tripod (probably). Theres too little DOF; the whole subject is not in focus and the background is annoying...
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