24 October 2017

adrift in a sea of gear

What would really satisfy me, "once and for all"?
It probably doesn't work that way - but if I could manage it, what then?

My perceived needs include weather protection, in-body stabilization and a tilt screen, preferably with some touch controls.  That would narrow me down to Pentax, SonyAlpha, Olympus and very recent Lumix bodies.

Since budget is paramount, that limits me a bit more. It would be best to go with a past-generation Olympus so my current lens set can do the job. I have neither Pentax nor µ43 lenses with weather seals so no gain there; if I had a choice I'd take the 12-60 Lumix again at some point.

Now I already tried the EM5 mark I and it didn't appeal to me much. I wish it did, since it has weather seals - but one cannot force these things. The GX7 was really nice the first time, less so the second time; I still cannot quite explain that! The EM1 Classic stands as the item of choice on a budget. That includes many features that sound quite interesting. Its video setting is primitive yet still more complete than Pentax models, with AF or tap-MF available. The EM1 also has live time/composite and PDAF points on the sensor, good features all.

So what's available to me for $250-ish?
  • I can get a Alpha - but it won't have weather seals at that price. And I'd need lenses. Many Minolta lens bargains are still out there, but add at least $100 to grab a few. No point to this, since I have both K-mount and mic43 lenses today..
  • I can get an EM1 for $300ish, then later add some sealed lenses. Current lenses cover 16-300mme so it's a fairly full set. An EM10 could also be found, which I preferred to the EM5 - current lenses are fine but no weather seals.
  • The Lumix GX7 is still around $250 - but how much do I really like it?
  • I can get a K-5, but again: I've no WR lenses on hand. I do have other lenses covering 27-450mme  assuming my white 18-55 could be restored to service. A K-30 or K-50 could show up, or a K200d for that matter if the GX1 takes all video tasks. 
  • And hey: why not toss in another copy of the K-01? Its photo and video abilities still impress - and it's smaller than the latest m43 gear despite its cruel reviews lamenting its immense size at the time. No wx seals of course, but $200 bodies show up now and then.
Or of course I can do nothing and save $225 or more!

There are a few things the GX1 cannot do well, but really it does nothing poorly either. I'd love more battery life and better AF talent, but it's better than I am in most cases. I recently learned more about Pinpoint AF and that choice has helped me on several occasions.