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Showing posts from December 27, 2009

Are You Torn between Two Systems?

Having used the GF1 for over a week, I am quite satisfied with its image quality.  But frankly, the major IQ (image quality) improvement for this larger MFT sensor over the tiny sensor fitted in my GX200 is the dynamic range.  See for yourself by comparing the jpeg and Raw files of the GR1 and GX200 posted in the previous post here.As for high ISO images, If you're hoping that the GF1 affords a much supreme quality, adjust your expectation a bit.For me, I have no complaint about the GF1's IQ at even ISO 800.  But at full-screen size, the ISO 1600 images are obviously smeared and the ISO 3200 ones more smudgy.  Surely, they are better than those of the GX200, which is not known for good high ISO image quality.I have briefly compared the ISO images of the GF1 to those of the CX1 and the Canon 500D (with a 50mm equiv. f1.8 prime lens).  Generally speaking, at full-screen size, CX1's ISO 800 images are a little worse than GF1's ISO 1600 ones, while Canon 500D's fare be…

Last Night of 2009

^Last night in 2009, the whole town dashed out to the street to cherish the year before it was gone.It is just past midnight into the new year 2010.  I'm staying in a Starbucks after joining the countdown.  Everyone shouted from 10 to zero and cheering filled every space in the air at the tick of twelve.  Happy new year!^Even the neon-light signboards seemed especially bright and cheerful last night.^Decorations hanging overhead near the cafe.^Staff were busy making coffee for the long queue of customers.  Every seat was taken.  Tables meant for two were seated by four.  A side table not meant for customers was turned into a makeshift cafe table for a pair of lovers.^There is a common saying in Cantonese to describe this scene which is, literally, "people mountain, people sea".^The crowd was leaving after the countdown.This is 2010.  Again, happy new year!

GF-1: Image Quality with Full Size Photos

After being (as always) verbose yesterday, I'm going to prove to you what matters most for a camera by showing you some full-sized photos taken by GF1.My impression is that the optical strength of the 20mm prime lens surpasses that of the 14-45mm lens not by much (but by just enough).  Both are Lumix lenses.  The Leica lens for the MFT system supposedly fare much better.  I had not a chance to test the Leica lens unfortunately.The photos taken with the 20mm lens are here, which include a RAW file.  For comparison purpose, I uploaded a JPEG and RAW files of the GX200 to the same folder.The photos taken with the zoom lens are here, which include two RAW files.If you're doubtful about the performance of the lenses, some photos taken by Nikon's AF-S 70-200mm f/ 2.8G VR II ED are here, here and here for comparison.

When Impressive GF-1 Meets Striking Girls

The GF1 has lots to impress users, which we will go through in this impression series. As an advocate of serious compacts, I have no hesitation in recommending a buy. Until I can try the GXR, which I bet inherits the first-class ergonomics, I have found the GF1 superb in most aspects of the control layouts which include the menu system and the disposition of the buttons. The menu system is easily understood and more likeable than the GRDIII particularly in terms of the much bigger font size. It has five function sections each of which splintered into several pages. By rolling the back wheel, hopping from one page/ section to the other in the menu is blissful. The tab-type menu layout, together with the page number indicator on the upper right corner, makes the menu-surfing anything but confusing . I will give 4½ stars out of five for its menu system, with the caveat that Panasonic doesn't give users the elbowroom to customise the preferred functions in a quick menu or the Fn…

GF-1 User's Impressions: Introduction

It has been some days since I picked up the GF1 and accessories on loan by the local sole distributor of Panasonic cameras. If I am to finish an user's impressions in a few words, I would say that returning the GF-1 will be rather saddening because of its superb image quality and larger sensor in a smaller body. But, as always, it is a beautiful rose not without thorns.The GF1 feels absolutely solid and well-built in hand. The way the camera body evenly weighs is likable to any photographers unless he or she has been using only compacts. The camera has to be operated by both hands though, especially when the zoom lens is mounted.With the 20mm (45mm equiv.; really fast at f1.7) lens mounted, the GF1 weighs the same as my GX200 with the wide converter. Well, a better reference can be made by the following photo:With the Lumix 14-45mm (28-90 equiv. at f3.5 to 5.5 with OIS built-in) lens, the GF1 gains a few decimal pounds:Such weights compare favourably with a regular APS-C-sensor DS…

Selected Excellence: Comical Hong Kong

The photos are taken by a Hong Kong photographer FU Chun Wai who published them in his book Comical Hong Kong.Have an enjoyable Sunday!