First world problems

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#1
Whilst it's nice to be in the fortunate position to spend a good amount of money on my hobby (photography), and be able to own / try a number of different camera systems and lenses, and currently I'm running 3 different systems (the most I've ever run), and all have their strengths and weaknesses. However, with the wife and I and our two best fiends due to set off on our summer holidays to the USA in a couple of months, I've started to plan out (or try to), what gear I'm going to take. Here's where the dilemma starts ( I told you firstworld issues) :p

Normally I would take my venerable Micro Four thirds system, which has served me well over the last 4 years or so, that kit being my Olympus OMD EM1 MK II body with the M.Zuiko 12-100 F4 IS Pro, Leica 8-18 F2.8-4 and my M-Zuiko 25mm F1.2 Pro for low light. I've been happy with this set up, although as we all know, low light isn't the M4/3's system forte.

Thus I was pondering taking instead either my Fuji X-H1 or X-T3 bodies, with the Fujion 10-24 F4, Fujinon 18-55 F2.8-4 (or the 16-55 F2.8), Fujinon 55-200 F3.5-4.5 and my Fujinon 35mm F2 for low light. That would give me as much coverage (actually slightly more) than the Olympus set up, albeit with one more lens. The thought with this set up being the slightly better low light performance (for example for Disney nighttime parades firework shows etc.).

But then I'm thinking, if I want low light performance, why not take my new Nikon Z6 with the 24-70, 70-300 AF-P and 50mm F1.8 G (note I don't have any ultra wide angle option yet for the Z system) which bests all the others for low light ?, in a package size similar to the Olympus or Fuji Set up.

Whilst pondering all this, it just got me thinking, as much as I love having the choices I do (and I do use all 3 systems very frequently), I got to thinking that sometimes having less choice is better.

For instance, I remember about 10 years ago, where I'd pretty much lost my mojo for photography and had sold off almost everything I owned except a Nikon D300s and a single Nikon 16-85 zoom, and to be honest the freedom this allowed me ensured I got some of the best memories of many holiday taken around that time, even if "technically" I'd taken better photos, (i.e. sharper, less noise, better DOF control etc).

As I say, I know in the grand scheme of things these are meaningless issues and real "first world problems", but anyone else think sometimes taking a simpler smaller setup is better ?
 
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#2
I came back from 2 weeks in Orlando yesterday morning and had just taken my Sony A6500 with Sigma 16mm, Sigma 30mm and a Sony 55-210. I knew that I'd only use the 55-210 a couple of times (we stayed in the Animal Kingdom) but it's a light enough lens to throw in. Overall, I probably used 16mm the most but found the coverage was enough with the 30mm, apart from a couple of times when an 85mm would have been useful but it wasn't a major issue.

Overall, I'd definitely suggest keeping it simple as you'll soon get sick of carrying all the gear for the 'just in case' times you may use it.
 
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#3
I think you mean First World problems, but yes, paralysis by analysis is a very common problem that I’ve suffered from myself, it’s all too easy to get yourself thinking in circles.

Whenever I travel I just limit myself to one body+one lens (in my case a medium format film camera and a 50mm equiv. lens), plus my Ricoh GR as a backup/wide option. I’ve been using a similar setup for the past 7 years’ worth of trips and I found that there’s now a very consistent look and point of view to most of my travel photos.

For what it’s worth I think your Z system would cover it all anyway, I’d sell off the other two systems and use the extra money for your upcoming trips.
 
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#5
Yep, life was definitely simpler when we had less choice, I tend to take stuff away with me that I never use. I would say 98% of all my holiday photos are shot with the Olympus 12-40mm f2.8 but I still usually take a tele, 'portrait' prime, flash, gorilla pod (still not used it yet) and an array of filters (which also haven't been used). I wish I could just restrict myself to the Olly 12-40mm f2.8 :rolleyes:

P.S. As above, it's a first world problem not third world problem ;)
 
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#6
First world problems,..ha that is what I say to the my wife over trivial items and mention to her we are much better of than people say on Syria !

For holiday simple set up is best as too much kit means lugging everything around which you may use once !
I own Canon for 7Dii, Sony NEX5R, GoPro Hero 4 Black.
I always use my 7Dii with sigma 17-70 f2.8 during the day. As I can change AF point, ISO, mode etc very quickly. However depending on the holiday I could just get by using the NEX5R as it is small, light, 16mp, good AF speed, sharp camera. Problem is most of the functions I do quickly on my 7Dii are buried in the so y menu system.
The GoPro I use for time lapse, sticking to coach window for video or time lapse and of course any water based activities.

Now the Sony A6500 or its successor the A6700 / A7000 would be the ideal choice for me. Has enough controls / custom buttons for quickly changing settings, small and light for packing in a carry on luggage. I already own Sony E mount lenses. It is sharp, has good DR, good low light. Plus the amazing eye detect and now with Sony's latest firmware update with time lapse and animal eye detect. This camera is a winner for me as a travel/ holiday camera.
So that is whatch am hoping to purchase soon.
My 7Dii is amazing for wildlife, sports, motor sports, airshows and I will always use it for that.
If I just take one camera on holiday I am pretty much forced to.learn more about it capabilities and limitations.
 

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#7
Like many folk I have gone around in circles trying to decide what kit to take when going on holiday, so much so it's actally made me feel quite ill.
So the last time I went away I took one camera body and two prime lenses ( Leica M4, 35mm & 90mm)
I was very apprehensive in case the body packed up or if the format wasn't going to suit the scene or if I need a longer / shorter focal length lens etc etc.
However it was the least amount of kit that I've ever travelled with and very quickly ( after just one day) I found it to be seriously liberating!
In fact out of the half a dozen rolls of film shot ( couple of hundred frames) there was only 3 frames actually taken using the 90mm lens….I could easily have managed with just the 35mm.

My advice is take a body that is simple to use and reliable along with a maximum of two lenses, one of which being your prefered focal length ( in my case it being 35mm)
Better still, just the one lens!
 
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#8
On my trip to America last year I took my D810 (as bought off @Sootchucker), a 24-85 zoom (which is the lightest zoom I have) and an LX100 compact which has a similar zoom range. As I knew we'd be travelling round a lot and doing quite a bit of walking I did briefly debate taking a Fuji XT-10 but the battery life is rubbish and I didn't want to take a bag full of batteries and a charger.
No regrets on either front really, although the D810 was as big, clunky and inconvenient to cart round as I expected it to be. It won't be going on this years holidays for sure, but it's been a long time since I took an SLR on holiday, compacts are much more convenient.
 
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#9
I'm not a person who finds less gear is better. What I have now is various kits all bagged up and ready to grab...
  1. General use: Olympus E-PL5/9-18mm; Panasonic GH2/12-32mm; Panasonic GX7/45-150mm.
  2. Heavy duty: Sony A65/16-300mm; Panasonic G9/100-400mm.
  3. Primetime: Panasonic G2/7.5mm fisheye; Panasonic GM5/30mm; Pansonic GM5/60mm.
I also have a couple of travel zoom cameras and generally carry one in my pocket.

If I'm going away for a while I would usually take kit number 2 though I might take number 1 to maintain a (relatively) low profile.
 
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#10
I think one of the biggest issues is pixel peeping and if we can avoid that and maybe accept that most of our pictures are going to be viewed on electronic devices and if printed not printed 3m wide for close viewing with a magnifying glass then maybe just about any modernish camera from 1" sensor and upwards will be good enough for everything except stuff like fast sports and birds in flight.

I'm as guilty as anyone of wanting clean ISO 25,600 pictures but in reality even my 1" compact takes pictures at ISO 12,800 that look good on screen and just about perfect when printed to fill an A4 sheet and viewed normally. So yes, for me less in more and my A7 and 35mm f2.8 (about the same size as a MFT mini slr camera and lens) and a pocketable 1" compact will do nicely.
 
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#11
Well I sympathise (maybe not the right word!) slightly as I sometimes have this sort of dilemma. I sort of have three systems too but I think mine have been honed down to very specific usage so I just about know exactly which I'll take for any trip. I must admit in your caae, I can't really see the need to own such a comprehensive m4/3 set up and Fuji set up other than them both being very nice in their own right. I can see why it's hard to choose between them so I can't offer much help there.

But on the m4/3 low light thing, are fireworks displays etc, not the ideal scenario to take advantage of the outrageous image stabilization? A 12-100 and Em1ii can be hand held for about a week can't it?
 
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#12
I really think it comes down to what you want, or expect, to shoot. Personally I won't go anywhere without my 100-400 & 1.4TC as I'm always looking for birds/wildlife. As I run a pair of X-T2's, I generally take both bodies, and the 10-24 & 35 f1.4. Depending on what we expect to be doing, I may take another telephoto too, but most of our holidays revolve around either wildlife watching, or driving with friends from our car club.
 
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#14
I remember a holiday when I forgot the bag containing 'all' of my lenses except a 24 f1.4 ... had a very instructive week. :)
I managed to leave my camera bag at home, went to Mull with just an X100 and a single part charged battery, eeked out for a week (350+ images), no pixel peeping, using IVF (not EVF). Actually really enjoyed it, so much so that I often just take an X100 variant out now
 
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#15
Haha, thanks all, makes me feel better that I'm not the only one.

gad-westy, I know what you mean, I do love my Micro Four Thirds set up, which is now mainly confined to Wildlife shooting as it's the only system where i have decent tele options (300mm F4, 100-400, and 40-150 F2.8 with TC). I recently sold my Fuji 100-400 (on here), as it just wasn't getting as much use.

TBH, the Nikon Z6 was purchased just to scratch the FF itch, that I had even since I sold my last FF DSLR about 2 years ago. What has taken my by surprise is how much I really enjoy using the Z6 and how liberating it is once again, to not really have to worry about noise (certainly up to about ISO 12800), and the files have a lovely 3d depth to them as well. I really wasn't expecting to love the Z6 that much.

Maybe it's time to actually bit the bullet and let the Fuji system go, no matter how good it actually is, as it really does overlap the other two systems in terms of size, weight and ultimate image quality) ?
 
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Haha, thanks all, makes me feel better that I'm not the only one.

gad-westy, I know what you mean, I do love my Micro Four Thirds set up, which is now mainly confined to Wildlife shooting as it's the only system where i have decent tele options (300mm F4, 100-400, and 40-150 F2.8 with TC). I recently sold my Fuji 100-400 (on here), as it just wasn't getting as much use.

TBH, the Nikon Z6 was purchased just to scratch the FF itch, that I had even since I sold my last FF DSLR about 2 years ago. What has taken my by surprise is how much I really enjoy using the Z6 and how liberating it is once again, to not really have to worry about noise (certainly up to about ISO 12800), and the files have a lovely 3d depth to them as well. I really wasn't expecting to love the Z6 that much.

Maybe it's time to actually bit the bullet and let the Fuji system go, no matter how good it actually is, as it really does overlap the other two systems in terms of size, weight and ultimate image quality) ?
Unless you have a particular liking for the Fuji files, or Fuji handling it does seem a bit overkill to have that system imo. You've got FF for the ultimate IQ, and then M4/3 for the 'lightweight' setup but still very good IQ so I'm not sure exactly where the Fuji fits and why you need that as well?

I keep toying with the idea of swapping my D850 for the Z7 as I much prefer the form factor of my EM1-II and the Z7 isn't too dissimilar, however the one card slot and inferior AF system (compared to the D850) is stopping me at present. I'm actually looking forward to seeing what the Gen 2 z's offer (y).
 
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#17
I couldn’t think of a more perfect travel camera than one of the small lightweight ff cams such as the Z6 with a lens like a 24-70. Meets both IQ and lightweight requirements. In this scenario I see m4/3rds as being utterly useless and offering nothing unique.
 
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#19
Well, now I've managed to bag a new Nikon Z 14-30 F4 S lens from Panamoz (even before they are released in the UK), then I've decided my lightweight travel set up would be the following:

Nikon Z6 body with the 14-30 S, 24-70 S, and 70-300 AF-P (possibly my 50mm F1.8G AF-S for low light), my Nikon SB-400 tiny flash, 3 genuine Nikon EN-EL15b batteries and 2 Sony 120GB XQD G cards and one Sony 32GB XQD G card.

That means I've covered from 14mm through to 300mm in a very compact and lightweight package (just as small as my micro-four thirds system really), that all fits (with room to spare) in my smallest photo day pack, and the whole kit weighs less than 2.7kg
 
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#20
I think you need to decide according to the following:-
1) what will you be photographing? I.e skyscrapers, wildlife (as to which lenses are required)
2) how important is image quality? Will these be used to sell, put on the wall or just holiday memories in an album.
3) are you happy to carry the gear with you all day if necessary?
4) as you are in a group where I guess you are the only photographer will you be setting the agenda or going with the flow?
5) which kit if lost, stolen or damaged would you be able to shrug off? (unless insured but still a headache)
 
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#22
Yep :)
 
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#23
I couldn’t think of a more perfect travel camera than one of the small lightweight ff cams such as the Z6 with a lens like a 24-70. Meets both IQ and lightweight requirements. In this scenario I see m4/3rds as being utterly useless and offering nothing unique.
I agree, unless you take more than one lens and this is why I favour m4/3 for travel. For example I've just been away and have taken the EM1-II with 12-40mm (24-80mm eq) f2.8, two fast primes, a flash, and a 100-400mm (200-800mm eq) all for under 2.5kg, you just couldn't get this range on FF anywhere close in terms of weight. Also, if I needed to travel much lighter I could take the EM1-II, 12-40mm and 40-150mm (80-300mm eq) f4-5.6 for a fraction over 1kg, and less than the Z6/Z7 with 24-70mm.

Obviously we all have different wants and needs, and it's great that we have so many choices (y)
 
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#24
Depends how much you value the Fuji colours / JPEGS and Film simulations, otherwise surely it just comes down to going as small and light as possible if that doesn't bother you.

I did 2 weeks in the USA with an OMD EM1-II and it was ok, I subsequently did 2 weeks in Turkey with the XH-1 and in my opinion the Fuji blows it away.
 
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#25
I did 2 weeks in the USA with an OMD EM1-II and it was ok, I subsequently did 2 weeks in Turkey with the XH-1 and in my opinion the Fuji blows it away.
And this is exactly why folk need to try things for themselves, I much prefer the output from Olympus over Fuji, but there are many who prefer Fuji over everything else (y)
 
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#26
I couldn’t think of a more perfect travel camera than one of the small lightweight ff cams such as the Z6 with a lens like a 24-70. Meets both IQ and lightweight requirements. In this scenario I see m4/3rds as being utterly useless and offering nothing unique.
That combination is much more expensive than any similar M43 set up [outside of the EM1X] - Utterly useless is a bit harsh too, you'd get excellent photos with any decent M43 body and lens unless you really don't know what you're at
 
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#27
Utterly useless is a bit harsh too,
It's just the sort of comment you get when someone is trying to massage their ego. Whatever camera you have in your hands when the opportunity presents itself is the best possible camera.
 
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#28
It's just the sort of comment you get when someone is trying to massage their ego. Whatever camera you have in your hands when the opportunity presents itself is the best possible camera.
We see it a lot on here but it still surprises me how some slate certain gear so aggressive
 
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#29
We see it a lot on here but it still surprises me how some slate certain gear so aggressive
I just ignore it tbh. As you known I own arguably the best FF DSLR in terms of IQ, and the M4/3 system and I know just how good the m4/3 is. When using M4/3 the only thing I miss is the shallow DOF.
 
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#30
I just ignore it tbh. As you known I own arguably the best FF DSLR in terms of IQ, and the M4/3 system and I know just how good the m4/3 is. When using M4/3 the only thing I miss is the shallow DOF.
I do yearn for it now and then myself, keep trying to sell the G80 so I can give something else a try for a bit but it doesn't want to shift :D I refuse to buy anything else until it goes - unless a stomper of a deal comes up, almost went for Soot's XH1 earlier today but have my eye on some FF options too. Still gotta shift that G80 though, can't be running 2 systems it would wreck my head :D I tried it when I switched to M43 first, still had the old Fuji gear but it was never going to work out.
 
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#31
That combination is much more expensive than any similar M43 set up [outside of the EM1X] - Utterly useless is a bit harsh too, you'd get excellent photos with any decent M43 body and lens unless you really don't know what you're at
Well it was the combination offered by the OP and he didn’t add a budget aspect to his post. Of course cheaper ff packages are available which can be even smaller too.

If you can get a small ff body and lens it would be odd imo to consider taking a m4/3 body that couldn’t match it on iq and could well be larger too.
 
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#32
Well it was the combination offered by the OP and he didn’t add a budget aspect to his post. Of course cheaper ff packages are available which can be even smaller too.

If you can get a small ff body and lens it would be odd imo to consider taking a m4/3 body that couldn’t match it on iq and could well be larger too.
There are other factors to consider other than sensor size when buying a camera that are equally or maybe even more important. FF is not the holy grail (y).
 
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#33
Well it was the combination offered by the OP and he didn’t add a budget aspect to his post. Of course cheaper ff packages are available which can be even smaller too.

If you can get a small ff body and lens it would be odd imo to consider taking a m4/3 body that couldn’t match it on iq and could well be larger too.
I have a Sony A7 and Panasonic GX80 and GX9. The Sony is really only the EVF hump bigger than the RF style MFT cameras and with the Sony 35mm f2.8 there still isn't a fantastic difference between the Sony kit and the GXx's and 17mm f1.8. However, my A7 and 85mm f1.8 is quite a bit larger than a GXx and 45mm f1.8 and with zooms there's a clear size advantage to MFT too plus the MFT cameras are lightening fast to focus and shoot. I haven't tried later Sony A7/9 series cameras or the new Canikons but I'd be amazed if they could match the speed and responsiveness of MFT kit.

So there's those things... bulk and weight savings with specific camera and lens combinations and the blisteringly fast speed of the faster MFT bodies and lenses.
 
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#34
Well I didn't start this thread to initiate a flame war over what format is better than others, but to specially attack M4/3 is a bit silly in my eye (especially if one has never used the system) . Sure EVERYONE knows that FF will give better control over DOF and better high ISO performance, but there are still some circumstances where I prefer to use my Olympus system.

One such is wildlife photography where i don't own (or could afford) any of Nikon's super exotic lenses for my Z6 (such as the Nikon 600mm F4E FLEDVR Lens at a whopping £11,000) , whereas my FL and exposure equivalent (not DOF) Olympus 300mm F4 cost me less than £2k and is MUCH lighter and smaller to boot and actually hand holdable all day (try that with a Nikon D850 and 600MM F4 :D) My Olympus combo weighs only 2.2kg (even lighter with the EM1 MK II), but the Nikon combo mentioned weighs just under 5kg

So me me it's horses for courses and each has their merits. The below shot shows what an EM1X with the 300mm F4 is capable of, and I (maybe just me) don't think it's crap at all

 
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#35
Well I didn't start this thread to initiate a flame war over what format is better than others, but to specially attack M4/3 is a bit silly in my eye (especially if one has never used the system) . Sure EVERYONE knows that FF will give better control over DOF and better high ISO performance, but there are still some circumstances where I prefer to use my Olympus system.

One such is wildlife photography where i don't own (or could afford) any of Nikon's super exotic lenses for my Z6 (such as the Nikon 600mm F4E FLEDVR Lens at a whopping £11,000) , whereas my FL and exposure equivalent (not DOF) Olympus 300mm F4 cost me less than £2k and is MUCH lighter and smaller to boot and actually hand holdable all day (try that with a Nikon D850 and 600MM F4 :D) My Olympus combo weighs only 2.2kg (even lighter with the EM1 MK II), but the Nikon combo mentioned weighs just under 5kg

So me me it's horses for courses and each has their merits. The below shot shows what an EM1X with the 300mm F4 is capable of, and I (maybe just me) don't think it's crap at all

I didn’t wish to stay a flame war and I apologise on balance my comments were inflammatory. But likewise don’t make assumptions that one has never used m4/3. Not quite sure how you worked that one out!

My original point (perhaps now lost) was that for travel purposes two camera the same size one with a sensor 4 x as large well it’s still a no brainer for me. I appreciate m4/3 has some niche uses with longer lenses though.
 
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#36
Well I didn't start this thread to initiate a flame war over what format is better than others, but to specially attack M4/3 is a bit silly in my eye (especially if one has never used the system) . Sure EVERYONE knows that FF will give better control over DOF and better high ISO performance, but there are still some circumstances where I prefer to use my Olympus system.

One such is wildlife photography where i don't own (or could afford) any of Nikon's super exotic lenses for my Z6 (such as the Nikon 600mm F4E FLEDVR Lens at a whopping £11,000) , whereas my FL and exposure equivalent (not DOF) Olympus 300mm F4 cost me less than £2k and is MUCH lighter and smaller to boot and actually hand holdable all day (try that with a Nikon D850 and 600MM F4 :D) My Olympus combo weighs only 2.2kg (even lighter with the EM1 MK II), but the Nikon combo mentioned weighs just under 5kg

So me me it's horses for courses and each has their merits. The below shot shows what an EM1X with the 300mm F4 is capable of, and I (maybe just me) don't think it's crap at all

Not crap at all. Clearly it's never going to match the Canikon 600mm f4's, but for any other lens(es) of similar equivalent focal length, weight and cost I don't think that it can be matched.
 
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#37
I think people underestimate the system solely based on sensor size. I've used all formats [bar MF] and the differences for my style of shooting were minimal for the most part between them. I like them all for different reasons, FF for the DR, shallower DOF where desired, crop-ability [on the higher MP sensors] and better ISO performance, APSC for that in-between all-rounder-best of both effect and M43 for overall package weight saving, better reach, much better IBIS than the others can manage and greater DOF for macro/wildlife/landscape/street. There's arguments for and against all of them.
 
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#38
I didn’t wish to stay a flame war and I apologise on balance my comments were inflammatory. But likewise don’t make assumptions that one has never used m4/3. Not quite sure how you worked that one out!

My original point (perhaps now lost) was that for travel purposes two camera the same size one with a sensor 4 x as large well it’s still a no brainer for me. I appreciate m4/3 has some niche uses with longer lenses though.
Again, sorry to be pedantic but I've just been away with a 200-800mm equivalent lens so for travel it's not a no brainer. Obviously if you're just taking a short zoom lens then the FF options would tend to be more appealing, if you take cost out of the equation. But even then it depends on what you're comparing. If you compare the EM1-II with 12-40mm with the Z6/7 with 24-70mm f4 then the FF combo 'only' weighs 219g more (which may or may not be significant), but if you're taking something like the EM5-II with 14-42mm pancake lens it's nearly 600g difference. If stopping down for your 'average' travel landscape/cityscape shot then you're not making massive sacrifices in IQ using the 14-42mm over the 12-40mm to get a significant weight saving.

You could also use the EM1-II with 12-100mm f4, giving 24-200mm equivalent focal length for 40g less than the Z6/7 with 24-70mm f4. Then there's the superior IBIS on Olympus bodies, live composite etc. These factors may be enough to sway someone over the very little gains you'd get in IQ using the FF setup.
 
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#39
Again, sorry to be pedantic but I've just been away with a 200-800mm equivalent lens so for travel it's not a no brainer. Obviously if you're just taking a short zoom lens then the FF options would tend to be more appealing, if you take cost out of the equation. But even then it depends on what you're comparing. If you compare the EM1-II with 12-40mm with the Z6/7 with 24-70mm f4 then the FF combo 'only' weighs 219g more (which may or may not be significant), but if you're taking something like the EM5-II with 14-42mm pancake lens it's nearly 600g difference. If stopping down for your 'average' travel landscape/cityscape shot then you're not making massive sacrifices in IQ using the 14-42mm over the 12-40mm to get a significant weight saving.

You could also use the EM1-II with 12-100mm f4, giving 24-200mm equivalent focal length for 40g less than the Z6/7 with 24-70mm f4. Then there's the superior IBIS on Olympus bodies, live composite etc. These factors may be enough to sway someone over the very little gains you'd get in IQ using the FF setup.
Well given you’ve already agreed with my original point I think you understood me first time but apology accepted!
 
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#40
OK let's all agree that different systems suit different users requirements - and leave it at that. All still friends? (y)(y) :giggle:
 
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