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gf2 as a low cost alternative to p&s


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#1 derway

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Posted 17 August 2011 - 03:19 PM

The gf2 with kit lens is now nearly as cheap as the lx5. And with way better IQ, and autofocus and shutter lag.

The AF seems every bit as fast as the gh2, from the brief playing I've done, and the reviews.

The housings seem a bit limited. The 10 bar is reasonably priced but does not offer a zoom port with flat port.

This would seem to me to be a nice substitute for a p&s cam.

What other housings are there for the gf2, and what ports?

Edited by derway, 17 August 2011 - 03:32 PM.

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#2 JKrumsick

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Posted 17 August 2011 - 06:45 PM

WetPixel just posted an article on the Nauticam housing for the GF2.

http://wetpixel.com/...-panasonic-gf2/

#3 derway

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Posted 18 August 2011 - 08:42 AM

Looks great. But the price is not a cost effective substitute for a p&s...
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#4 tarjan

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Posted 21 August 2011 - 03:14 PM

Looks great. But the price is not a cost effective substitute for a p&s...


I just picked up a gf2 10bar housing. I only have the 14 and 14-42mm lenses (at least for underwater use) for now, but I'll give some feedback on how they worked when I get back from a blackbeards cruise in a bit. I wonder if I can rent the 7-14 and/or 45mm? Anyone know where I could do that on short order?

On land the focus and zoom controls are the only thing I am worried about. Everything else is very quality feeling and lots of extra parts that are common replacements (orings and the like). The zoom requires you to push in and turn, but the motion isn't quite what I would call "refined". Then again, I might be saying that I was wrong when I come back. Underwater use is not the same as in air! :)

#5 derway

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Posted 21 August 2011 - 05:44 PM

Great stuff Tarjan. Looking forward to your report.

Many folk have indicated they get on with the 10bar housings for the gf1, and gh2 just fine. So I expect this will be adequate, for the gf2 as well.

I just wish there was a flat port with zoom available. As there is from nauticam.

I have emailed 10bar and optical ocean sales, and gotten no answer from the first, and no encouragement from the later...
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#6 chris_l

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Posted 22 August 2011 - 04:47 AM

The gf2 with kit lens is now nearly as cheap as the lx5. And with way better IQ, and autofocus and shutter lag.

The AF seems every bit as fast as the gh2, from the brief playing I've done, and the reviews.

The housings seem a bit limited. The 10 bar is reasonably priced but does not offer a zoom port with flat port.

This would seem to me to be a nice substitute for a p&s cam.

What other housings are there for the gf2, and what ports?


The GF2 looks like a nice camera, but as you pointed out the housing is the problem.

The only thing in the mirrorless world that can compete with P&S from a price standpoint is the oly epl1/2 and that's simply because of the available oly housings.

I come from the P&S world of underwater and I have now moved to the epl2. It's a fantastic camera for the money and the housing is really nice.

#7 derway

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Posted 23 August 2011 - 09:24 AM

Chris don't you find the epl2 has problems with auto focus as the light gets low? AF slowing and slowing and failing to lock? You try to focus and take a shot, and the fish swims out of the frame, before the shutter releases?

My experience in a store, is that it does not hold a candle, to even the lx5, let alone a gf2, in the ability to get the shot, with low light, see my post in the epl2 thread for full report.

For me, not being able to get the shot, due to AF lag, is the most frustrating thing about trying to use a camera, other than an SLR, underwater.

So the gf2 housing is $300 more than the oly housing. The camera itself seems orders of magnitude closer to SLR AF performance, and clearly worth it.

To me, the epl2 seems like it would be much more frustrating to than the lx5, or the gf2.
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#8 chris_l

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Posted 23 August 2011 - 10:11 AM

Chris don't you find the epl2 has problems with auto focus as the light gets low? AF slowing and slowing and failing to lock? You try to focus and take a shot, and the fish swims out of the frame, before the shutter releases?

My experience in a store, is that it does not hold a candle, to even the lx5, let alone a gf2, in the ability to get the shot, with low light, see my post in the epl2 thread for full report.

For me, not being able to get the shot, due to AF lag, is the most frustrating thing about trying to use a camera, other than an SLR, underwater.

So the gf2 housing is $300 more than the oly housing. The camera itself seems orders of magnitude closer to SLR AF performance, and clearly worth it.

To me, the epl2 seems like it would be much more frustrating to than the lx5, or the gf2.


I've used the epl2 on 6 dives so far and have not experienced focus lock problems. Now, in absolutely no or extremely low light, I can see a problem, but it hasn't been a problem for me. I have a focus light, but it's about the smallest you can get, the nano focus light.
I also had a lot of cloud of cover on some of my dives and didn't have a real problem.
I can't say it locked focus everytime, first time, but it just wasn't an issue for me.
Even SLRs will have focus problems in extreme lighting conditions.
I have never tried an LX5, but did try a GF2 in a store and while it might have been a hair faster than the epl2, I didn't think it was significant. The epl1 was a lot slower.

For me personally, I did not really consider the 10bar housing. I wanted to be able to do more WA pics and the reports regarding the semi dome on the 10bar are not great. From what I read, the olympus housing with the Zen dome was a better solution, so that factored into my decision.
I was deciding between an epl2/oly houisng with Zen, a Nex5 in aquatica or a GF2 in nauticam. The epl2 was my last choice as far a pure performance, but when you factor in cost, it won out for me.
That's why I responded to this thread. The thread is about a low cost alternative to P&S. I was just saying it's almost impossible to beat the epl2 in cost vs image quality.

Oh, one of my dives was night dive and I didn't have a problem. Granted I didn't take many pics on that dive due to too many divers and lack of subjects, but with my little nano focus light, everything was fine.

Edited by chris_l, 23 August 2011 - 10:22 AM.


#9 derway

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Posted 23 August 2011 - 10:42 AM

Thanks Chris. That really helps set my mind at ease.
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