Post by belgiumreporter on Dec 5, 2015 12:26:25 GMT -5
this thread: cameracollector.proboards.com/thread/9083/olympus-om-comparable-which-nikon?page=1&scrollTo=75168, made me think , What if you had to choose between an OM 1 and a pentax MX. On first sight two cameras much alike but on closer inspection things are diffrent. The OM 1 has 97% viewfinder coverage while the MX "only" has 95% OM 0.92x viefinder magnification, MX 0.97 though the MX viewfinder gives a larger image, contrast and brightness are better in the OM. The MX has no mirror lock up, Film transport feels about the same on both camera's, shutternoice is more muted on the OM. EV Range on the OM = 2-17, MX =1-19 ISO range on both 25-1600ISO both can use winder or motordrive.Pentaxes K bayonet gives you a wider range of lens options and OM lenses tend to be more expensive. I don't have MTF charts on the lenses but in normal use there isn't much diffrence. So wich one would i pick? to be honest the OM has a more quality feel to it but is let down by it's use of mercury cells wich are non obtainable ( there are solutions, non of them cheap or easy) So after being biassed towards the OM, the MX seems the more practical solution it's a bit of a tie to me. Wich one would you choose and why ?
The battery issue should not affect an OM1, all manual, all works, bar meter. Silver oxide fit, just a little less accurate and can be compensated by adjusting the ASA.
On build etc., the Olympus is just fractionally ahead of the MX, which is pretty solid, and the lenses are slightly better on the OM1, but in practical use would be about the same for the particular aperture/focal length.
OM1 are exceedingly long lived, mine is original non motor drive and works exactly as well as the 70's. The lens is sharp, distinguishable from Nikon etc., only on colour bias, which is very subtle, but generally the Zuiko lens are warmer in tone.
Pentax lenses of the MX era were not quite so sharp technically, but very near, and with better contrast, and slightly cooler saturation.
I did several tests at the time, based on K25 slide, removing and transferring the film between makes, all on the same roll to get consistency.
Only very experienced Nikon owners could pick the brand, there is a "Nikon" look, most other makes look the same, but on Kodak Tec pan and test charts, the Olympus usually came top or level with Nikon. Pentax came lower, but contrast and colour balance made up for this...........and believe it or not the Russian F2 could rival the best.
The best lens I tested myself for sharpness was the Topcor F1.4 from Topcon, it was abut 3% sharper than Nikon!
Not much dimensional difference but there are huge differences in control layout and viewfinder display.
The MX has traditional control layout while the OM1 is not so traditional. The MX has full info available in the viewfinder using LEDs while the OM1 shows none and uses the needle. The MX can also use the focusing screens of the LX producing a bit brighter display.
Please consider that none of these are factory new so variations in condition/feel/sound as well as lens "practical sharpness" is likely limited to your samples. As far as practical sharpness is concerend, I just tested some of my old used lenses using Kodak Techpan at ISO25 developed in Technidol under ideal conditions and I can comfortably say that they they are good for use with digital sensors >50MP.
I am glad I don't have to pick between one or the other . . .
Post by belgiumreporter on Dec 7, 2015 9:08:46 GMT -5
@ Lesdmess,by practical sharpness i didn't mean to say these lenses wouldn't be capable of producing top results, i just didn't want to start nitpicking in making claims like the zuiko could resolve two more lines than the takumar or things like that wich are of little use in everyday shooting. And luckily i don't need to choose between either of them to. It's just with film prices reaching the level of what you pay for such cameras (well maybe not just as much as a black MX) one has to be carefull what to do whit his precious film. @pauylofseth. I now and then enjoy using cameras in my collection for what they are made for, just like a classic car enthousiast would now and then take his oldtimer for a spin. I guess stampcollectors rarely use their stamps to see of they will still be able to get the letter delivered :-) I haven't got an OM 4 but i like my OM2 spot and i hate it for the same reason people complain about OM 3's and 4's and that's the battery consumption.
The only opinion about lens sharpness is that the Nikon lenses topped all tests done commercially, others only rivalled them. None would produce results that were bad, customers who had poor sharpness was always down to other factors, camera shake, too low a shutter speed, poor handling of the camera. We tested all "bad" lenses with film, and I cannot remember any case where the lens was bad. There were some poor bodies, mirror slap and bounce caused issues on some reflexes, losing the edge on the sharp image. Both the MX and OM1 had no issues like these, firm predictable performance. Not often mentioned is that the OM1 is awkward for left handed users, Olympus expected the camera to be rested on the palm of the left hand, when the important controls can be reached by the fingers from underneath. It sort of works with left hand operation, but there were complaints, as the release is on the "wrong side". However Olympus put a lot of research into the handling and it worked. The palm support is better than a side gripped camera, the damping is better.
I very much doubt that the OM or MX negs could be easily identified.
wow talk about technical.. may all be important for professional photographers and others in the trade as obviously many of you are.. to just the average camera bug like me all that I found important is easy to use and a clean crisp photo with good colour rendition (usually controlled more by dev & print process then camera) that could be enlarged to at least 10x8 inches without loss of clarity .. with a few exceptions I got that from most "modern" SLRs and I'm not going digital here Great to read how much importance you guys put into some of your equiptments capabilities... guess its for that reason camera manufacturers kept a high level of their products
Not so technical, it was experience, many thousands of photos to check and assess, cameras to check out for resale s/hand, and hundreds of complaints about issues with cameras, which were down to poor technique, and not reading the instructions! Developing and printing services for prints were always a nightmare, one bad film and even a Nikon could be blamed! We had many customers who took fantastic shots on Olympus Trips, Retinas, and Agfa. Their Prints had punch and saturation and were sharp, It made you wonder about what extra you got from an expensive reflex.
The only area that showed up the simpler camera was black and white, enlarged to 8x10 or more, done for Photo Club showing etc. That's where the quality of the top makes showed through, dominated by Nikon, rivalled by the other makes. The same applied to slides projected to 6 ft wide or more.
On colour slides, the best I saw were done by a customer on a Vito B, all sharp, correctly exposed, all on Kodachrome, and used in reference books on flowers published by her. The Secret, she only took the shots when the light was right, and always used 60th at F8 for K25. No meter, just an eye for perfect natural lighting. Her printers assumed that Pro level cameras were being used.
I sometimes envy people in camera and associated trades .. whether it be sales, repairs, or professional photography I feel it would have been a nice way to earn a living but probably in truth for those involved there were maybe just as many nightmares as in other trades lot different for a fool like me who just enjoyed playing with cameras and seeing what I was capable of (which turned out to be .. not much) Lots of enjoyment though, which I still get today just from collecting ......
I haven't got an OM 4 but i like my OM2 spot and i hate it for the same reason people complain about OM 3's and 4's and that's the battery consumption.
On both the OM3 and OM4, you can tell if you have the upgraded electronics that doesn't eat up batteries by using the battery check. If after 30 seconds the beep stops then you have the new board. Both of mine do. I don't know if this applies to the OM2 spot.
Post by grhazelton on Jan 17, 2019 16:44:15 GMT -5
As a user of the MX, I can make a few observations. On both my examples the shutter speed dial is difficult to turn without both thumb and finger. This has been noted by other users. My examples have decided to consume battery cells at an alarming rate! My older MX soldiered on for more than ten years (bought used) with no problems until the appetite developed. Two trips to a supposedly capable shop here in the Atlanta area brought - and bought! - no success. Removing the base plate to check the little leaf switch powering the meter showed it to be opening when it should. Perhaps a problem with the printed circuit board? My other MX, a beauty in black, shows the same problem. Cell life on either of these is measured in weeks! not in the one year to 18 months the first used to exhibit. Another consideration: While the winder adds, for me, handling ease, the battery door is very fragile. Not only is it easily lost, but the locking wheel seems to be threaded into the plastic of the unit. Be careful! Despite these caveats, the my MXs are among my favorite SLRs; small, ergonomic, capable.
Post by yashica1943 on Mar 14, 2019 8:41:37 GMT -5
A brief opinion from me. I have both, I have used both. I prefer the feel of the MX and the controls suit me better the film wind on mine is the smoothest yet of any slr. Speed dial in the right place and I never got used to changing the aperture on the front edge of the 50mm. I like the intricate and sharper look of the OM-1 but the commonly cracked flash shoe base spoils it. (My smooth Rolleiflex SL35 without the shoe made in Germany beats both for the look of a quality item!) I also have a mint OM 10 and with the speeds adapter I would be happier using it day to day than either the OM or the MX.
Post by paulhofseth on Mar 14, 2019 14:17:38 GMT -5
A slightly irrelevant addendum. My wife needed macro capabilities, so we evenually got the OM bellows, the variable extension mount, the vari-magni-finder and the ringflash. Rock solid and very useful.
The bellows still serves to digitize slides. Much faster than scanning. Anyone contemplating macro on film could do worse than using Olympus, AND it works on more recent cameras as well.