Monday, March 31, 2008
D-SLRS: Pro Vs. Enthusiast
We compare each brand’s entry-level models with its pro offerings to see what we’re getting dollar for dollar
Panasonic Lumix L10 Vs. The Lumix L1
Although they bear the same brand name, the Leica-inspired LUMIX L1 and the more conventional LUMIX L10 are very different cameras. The L1 has a heavier, pro-like build, with styling and operation similar to Leica's range-finder models. The L10 is a lightweight, conventionally styled D-SLR with features and a menu interface similar to what youâd find on midrange models from other manufacturers.
Both cameras have a sensor-dust-removal system for the Four Thirds, Live MOS sensor that harnesses the benefits of both CCD and CMOS sensors while facilitating Live View on the LCD. Each camera features a Venus Engine III that processes images and maximizes the performance of the Leica D lenses.
The L1 sensor has 7.5 megapixels, whereas the L10 has 10.1 megapixels. Both have 2.5-inch LCDs, but the L10 LCD tilts and swivels for easier framing of unconventional shots. The Leica kit lens that comes with the L1 is a Vario-Elmarit 14-50mm ƒ/2.8-3.5, which is nicer than the L10 kit lens-a D Vario-Elmar 14-50mm ƒ/3.8-5.6. Each has optical stabilization built in.
|Metering System||49 or 256 zone||49 or 256 zone|
|Max. Shooting Rate||3 fps||3 fps|
|AF System||1-, 3-, 9- or 11-point||3-point|
|Dimensions||5.3x3.8x3.05 inches||5.7x3.4x2.5 inches|
|Weight||16.9 ounces||18.7 ounces|
|Estimated Street Price||$1,300||$1,500|
Olympus E-3 Vs. The Evolt E-410
Unlike the dramatic differences seen in the Canon and Nikon lines, Olympus's pro D-SLR, the E-3, does have a lot in common with the entry-level EVOLT E-410. Both have a 10-megapixel, Live MOS sensor-although the E3's has just slightly higher resolution. Each has a Live View shooting mode, a dust-reduction system, a 49-point metering system, sensor-shift Image Stabilization and a 12-bit A/D converter.
The E-3 has a more rugged, weather-resistant body and a much faster 11-point AF system when used with SWD Zuiko lenses. The 2.5-inch LCD tilts and swivels for easier framing of shots. It can capture full-res RAW images at 5 fps, and the ISO goes up to 3200 for better low-light shooting. At 1⁄8000 sec., the maximum shutter speed is faster than the E-410's 1⁄4000 sec., which definitely could make a difference for high-speed sports shooters.
The E-410's viewfinder shows 95 percent of the image, whereas the E3 viewfinder shows 100 percent for more accurate framing. Continuous shooting at full resolution is limited to 3 fps, and the ISO only goes up 1600.
|Metering System||49-zone, CW, spot||49-zone, CW, spot|
|Max. Shooting Rate||5 fps||3 fps|
|Dimensions||5.6x4.6x2.9 inches||5.1x3.6x2.1 inches|
|Weight||28.5 ounces||13.2 ounces|
|Estimated Street Price||$1,699||$549|
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