Olympus E-30 or Nikon D90?

by Vygintas
(Lithuania)

Hi, I have a dilemma - I want to change my Olympus E-410 to more powerful camera. I would prefer something from Olympus (E-30) because I purchase a Zuiko lenses, Olympus flash, some other small Olympus attachments, but I am worrying about 4/3 system sensor size. Is it reasonable to buy a more expensive body with the same small size sensor? Maybe it’s better to get a Nikon D90 with APS-C size sensor – the DxOMark rated this camera sensor significantly better than E-30. Or maybe I'm paying too much attention to sensor size?

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Feb 07, 2011
I would pass on both the D90 and the E30
by: Anonymous

Decide what size prints you are wanting to print. If you're not going to be printing anything over 24 X 36, then having a 12mp Olympus camera will give you enough pixels to print a good image, and leave you with a little bit of crop room. Personally, I wouldn't buy the Olympus e30...instead keep saving your money and by the time you have some extra money together, look for a used Olympus e5. It handles extremely well and records hd video.

Nov 25, 2009
About e-30
by: Vygintas

Hi, I have purchased an Oly E-30 with Zuiko 12-60 two month ago. And I am not sure I am happy with this. It is really fast, a lot of options and possibilities, but the quality of pictures could be better. A lot of noise especially in high ISO (1000 and above), autofocus work not good at low light. But there could be another problem - maybe I do something wrong. May be somebody know good links to web sites for Oly fans and how to deal with Oly e-30?

Nov 23, 2009
Olympus E-30 or Nikon D90
by: Roger

Olympus designed the 4/3 system from the ground up for digital photography. +4/3 is open to allow other manufactures to develope lenses for this system. +Allowing a 2 times crop factor, you can get away carrying a lot less lenses in your camera bag thus saving money and weight. +At 12mp the sensor has an extremely high resolution for its given size--more than enough to capture images greater than 20" x 30". -A little more noise at ISO of 3200 or greater. This is a mute point anyhow. ISO equates to film speed and you have to expect inadequate results with any camera whether film or digital at such film speeds.

If Canon, Nikon, Sony and others want to persue larger sensors let them. Would it make better photographs, I think not. I think Olympus would be better served concentrating on lenses for the 4/3 system.

Jul 29, 2009
Stabilization and Live View
by: Digital SLR Guide

Olympus digital SLRs have one main advantage over both Canon and Nikon DSLRs: many of them have built-in image stabilization that works with all compatible 4/3rds lenses.

Canon and Nikon both have stabilization, but only include it in a select number of specialized lenses.

If you take a lot of photos where stabilization can help improve image quality, then an Olympus DSLR might be a better choice.

The E-30 also has an LCD screen that flips out from the camera body and rotates for high and low angle shots - while such an LCD is included with the new Nikon D5000 no Canon DSLR has this feature.

Finally, Olympus was the first company to add a dust control system to their digital SLRs, and - based upon some tests that I have seen - the Olympus dust control seems to work better than others.

Jul 29, 2009
Olympus advantages
by: Vygintas

So, as I understood, I was right: D-90 is better choice than E-30? But there something is unclear for me. Olympus is huge company, maybe they produce Olympus cameras with some other special advantages which let them to stay with 4/3 size sensor in one line with Nikon and Canon (at least in mid level line). Maybe I should pay attention to some other Olympus options before I make decision?

Jul 28, 2009
Nikon D90
by: Digital SLR Guide

Personally, I really like the D90 and think that it's an exceptional camera - other reviewers agree that Nikon really did a great job with this DSLR.

Compared with the Olympus E-30, the D90 comes out on top in terms of features - the most notable difference is the inclusion of the HD video mode that the E-30 lacks.

The main issue is whether or not you feel you'll leverage what the D90 has to offer. If you don't have any real desire to take video with your DSLR or already have a video camera that you use, then the D90's video mode is not a huge plus.

If you do determine that the D90 is a better match for your shooting style - or a better match for where you'd like to progress in terms of your photography, then making the switch now makes more sense.

Jul 28, 2009
Olympus E-30 vs Nikon D-90
by: Vygintas

Thank you very much for your comment. I found it very useful. But I would like to ask a little bit more. I know its bad decision to change camera brands at least financially. But maybe it¡¦s better to do this now before I purchase new one. As I understood with APS-C sensor my possibilities is wider than 4/3? So, maybe E-30 has other advantages versus Nikon D-90? Which camera (E-30 or D90) would you prefer? Thanks in advance.

Jul 27, 2009
Crop Factor
by: Digital SLR Guide

When comparing the Olympus 4/3rds sensors with the larger ones from Canon and Nikon, there are a couple of things to take into account.

First, there's the crop factor: the smaller sensor results in a 2x crop factor rather than 1.6x or 1.5x.

This is mostly an issue if you want to take very wide-angle photos, but Olympus has compensated for this by releasing some very wide angle lenses (starting at 14mm rather than the more common 18mm).

When it comes to image quality, smaller sensors do have a tougher time of keeping noise low at high ISO settings. This is mostly an issue if you take a lot of photos in dim light without using a flash.

However, the Olympus E-510 that I used handled high ISO noise very well even at a setting of 1600. Purists might be able to tell the difference between high ISO images taken with a 4/3rds sensors and an APS-C sensor, but I found them hard to tell apart.

Since you already have some Olympus lenses and accessories, it seems to make sense (financially at least) to stick with the same system unless you want to lots of wide angle shots and/or hand-held photos in dim light without flash.

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