April 15, 2015
I looked at XZ-1 before when I bought a Canon S90. Now that Canon has gone away, I relooked at XZ-2. Other reviews sounded good, but.....
Initial observations, this camera is HEAVY and bigger compared to Canon S series. NOT as pocketable. The controls are all there, easy to operate, but the settings are (in usual Oly form) difficult to figure out. Not as user friendly. The lens cap is a bad design just as it was on the old C series of which I owned three. I had to buy a newer type lens cap for $25! Should be standard equipment
PROs are: good lens, nice but big rear screen. Ring, dial etc nice to use. Nice that I can use my existing EVF and flash unit on the XZ-2.
CONs are: mixed results using iAuto exposure mode and even the Program mode is tricky. Color balance is far different. Have not figured out the Auto WB as yet? Worse feature: battery can ONLY be charged IN the body. NOT a good design.
April 04, 2015
I got this for a walk-around camera for when my E-510 was not flexible enough. you know I need a wide angle, then the need for a tele. Well this fills that need. I gave it 4 stars and I'll add one for the external viewfinder, this was added after my trip and makes the whole package 5 STARS!
September 17, 2014
Just returned from holiday in Italy. Gave this XZ-2 a good workout. My comments:
1) fast lens takes great pics in low light, with no flash.
2) Swing out lcd screen. Used this 2-4 times a day. But when you need it for the overhead or ground level pic, it is great. Would be nice if it opened to 180 for 'selfies.'
3) touch screen for focus. BUT, see below.
4) fits in pocket of baggy jeans, barely.
5) took most pics in 'p' program mode; jpg only.
6) saw lots & lots of folks lugging the large dslr camera with grande zoom lens. Not me.
7) movies are good enough for most shots; take a movie when you want a panoramic view point.
8) pics are great; good color & exposure & focus. I will have little to do in photo editor.
9) battery always got me through the day, although I kept a charged spare on hand.
11) Double pics. press shutter button & camera takes two pics. Happens sometimes 20-25% of shots. Reported elsewhere. Not a show stopper but a real pain. Come on Olympus, you can fix this.
12) flash is weak; knew about this
13) short zoom; knew about this
14) proprietary cable & battery. Lost the camera cable with the lost luggage. This almost put me out of business.
15) BUT the control for the touch screen focus function is *on* the screen. Bump the screen and the touch screen now takes the photo. Olympus; put touch screen control on menu.
16) panorama requires you to take a series of manual photos. Apple's phones do this automatically, as user rotates the phone. Olympus; fix panorama.
August 23, 2014
This camera is a bargain at $300. I bought it for its RAW output and HDR capability. At first I was disappointed by the +1 ev to -1 ev limitation for its HDR bracketing feature. Fortunately, I was able to increase exposure compensation to a limit of +3 ev to -3 ev by pressing the arrow ring at its top to set it for exposure compensation, then rotating the arrow ring to increase or decrease the total exposure compensation. Works like a charm although it does result in some duplicate photos among the 3 sets of bracketed photos I usually end up taking. Use a steady tripod and a remote shutter trigger and the system is stable enough so there is no need for image stabilization or lining up the separate photos after you download to your HDR-capable program.
June 20, 2014
I had a Canon G10 and found the Olympus XZ-2 a better replacement primarily due to the faster lens, lighter weight and smaller size. I have been using this camera now for 4 months, shot over 4,000 pics and am very happy with the results.
June 01, 2014
The only reason I bought this camera to replace my XZ-1 was because the XZ-1 had terrible video. This camera shoots amazing video... but now it sports appalling clicking and whirring noises when the camera auto-focuses or zooms. You cannot use this for shooting anything in a quiet environment. Very very disappointing, I'm afraid this will be my last Olympus. If you don't need to shoot video however, a great camera.
May 30, 2014
Very good camera with a great lens and unlimited possibilities.
August 22, 2013
Power Button is to easy to turn "ON" by accident. However the articulated screen is great. 1.8 Lens allows me to take photos without the need for the flash.
This camera replaced a Olympus DLSR, no more big camera bags to carry around.
July 09, 2013
After spending alot of time with an LX3 and subsequently an LX5, the XZ-2 is definitely an upgrade over those two cameras - which to be fair were pretty good too.
Working outside, and quite often on snow, there is no substitute for a good EVF ... an articulating LCD screen is of no value on snow.. So, the price to play is a little steeper, but the VF-3 is SO much better than the evf available for LX5 in 2011, so I'm quite happy about that.
One feature I really like is the ability to set the image size and the image quality. I use Medium SF, don't really see the need for a really big file if the only end use is going to be web. Saves alot of space on your mem card.
The feature set for the camera is great. Lens, etc. I only have a couple of items that bug me.
1. When you play back your images, you use the zoom lever. Well there is only 1 step backwards and you are done (thumbs). On the LX5 you get 3 steps, and final one is a calendar (sweet), If you navigate around the calendar, you can move thru your collection of images very quickly. I just took a vacation and shot about 1700 shots. Finding images from a particular adventure (I climb mountains) is pretty much impossible with the Olympus software. Imagine scrolling back thru 1000 images trying to find one you shot early on. Once on your computer, problem not, but in the camera .... not even close to what Panasonic has to offer.
2. I shoot in shutter priority most of the time. Because it tends to be high contrast landscapes, I use spot meter on the highlights and then overexpose the shot to pull in some shadow detail. I set up the lens ring to click thru shutter speeds. The command dial on the back of the camera takes care of the exposure compensation. Problem is, it is still going to have the ability to change both shutter speeds and exp comp. Would it not make sense to only offer exp comp if you've already assigned shutter speed to the lens ring? Now I have to make sure which mode I'm in or when trying to overexpose 2/3 of a stop (2 clicks), I may in fact be changing the shutter speed two clicks. Total hassle. Why the duplication when the so totally innovative lens ring should relieve the command dial of that function. Just sayin!
3. Bought 3 extra Olympus batteries LI-90B. Used to getting alot more shots per charge with the Panasonic DMWBCJ13. The Oly battery was consistently getting about 180 shots per charge. I don't flash very much just so you know.
Anyway, I'm glad I spent the extra money to get this camera and not an upgrade to the LX7
June 24, 2013
My primary cameras are the E-5 and E-3. I purchased the XZ-2 about 7 months ago as my carry around camera and have not been disappointed. Great images from this very compact camera. Has a very fast sharp lens and easy to see LCD screen. And being an Olympus camera user learning the camera menu was easy.
March 20, 2013
I opened my XZ2 amid a Christmas hubbub. Gifts, including this, were passed around for a chorus of mutual ooh aahs. The menus got messed up, and being new to Olympus digital stuff couldn't make much sense of the camera for a while. My pics were worse than those of average casual smart phone. However, I came upon a blog by a guy called Robin Wong out of Malaysia who reviewed the camera and posted pictures from it. They were beautiful so I knew I had some learning to do. All along I suspected I was doing something badly wrong because although the stills were bad the movies were good right from the start. I downloaded the manual, studied it, found how to restore the default settings and now there's no holding me back.
I captured the first spring wild flowers in some woodland near where I work this morning and they're sensational.
I especially like the tilting screen for flowers and bugs and things close to the ground. A few years back I was at a rock concert where one of my kids was playing. I couldn't get a clear view of the stage so I held my camera above my head and guessed the location of the band. How useful would this screen have been then! That said, for some shots I miss an optical view finder for two reasons. The first is that on a bright day you just can't see the screen (or any other to my knowledge) well enough. The second is that being far-sighted I need to scramble for my glasses before I can be sure of what I'm taking whereas good optical finders have diopter adjustments so I wouldn't need to do that. I'm thinking of adding a finder accessory to my gear list.
All the stuff about a fast clear lens that's good in low light is true. The camera feels solid and well built and looks pretty.
March 16, 2013
Overall the camera is worth the cash. The photos are lovely the operation and feel are great, customizing the camera is easy and configurations are infinite. The best part of the camera in my opinion is the MF/Aperture switch in the front of the camera it falls right at my finger and allows for manual focus at any time. This, for me negates any focus problems since i use the camera in this mode 99% of the time. It's actually the number 1 reason I bought the damn thing.The 24fps movie mode is reason 2. The movie mode is good to great because the ring controls focus and the auto exposure does a good job. In movie mode you have no control over exposure as far as I can tell and usually I would mind, but, with the olympus the auto exposure is quite good. And as mentioned earlier i can pull my own focus and quite frankly until you experience how this camera does that you won't quite understand how special that is, especially in low light with a subject 6 feet away. Try it. in black and white. Lastly, and primarily is feel. This camera is not small but for my rather large hands its perfect. And the tilting screen is fantastic, especially on the street with the touch screen enabled you can shoot from the hip with control, you can see your composition and be a ninja at the same time. Nuff said.
March 09, 2013
I own XZ-1, p3 and pl3; the XZ-2 is a wonderful camera like the XZ-1, but I really like the touchscreen. Pictures are excellent and still learning how to use the different settings.
February 26, 2013
I previously owned the XZ-1 and was satisified, but was very disappointed with the XZ-2, first I found that it did not focus very well in low light situations, and second the battery compartment keep opening every time I went to use the camera. I returned the camera.
December 31, 2012
Nice camera, but it has one major flaw!! It wont focus lock at 3x zoom or farther when in inside home, light conditions!! I hope this can be fixed with a firmware update.
Solid build quality
Excellent lcd screen with accurate color representation
Sharp, fast lens.
Nice JPEG's (I shoot raw though)
Works awesome with the vf-2 evf
Con (only one I can think of):
Won't lock focus at tele end of lens when light starts to dissipate (ie. Inside a house with lights on). This is why I give this camera 3 stars.
I wish you could set a minimum shutter speed in Aperture Priority, or add auto ISO to Manual mode.
Wish the xz-2 screen had the option to stay on when the vf-2 is on.