An interesting solution for interior architecture. Use smaller format cameras....

I liked Abraham's (ODL Design) suggestion that I source an inexpensive Olympus EM-5.2 and use the hi-res mode in conjunction with the 8-18mm Panasonic/Leica lens to make very high resolution shots for my upcoming architectural photography projects. I have one modification that I'd make to his suggestion and that is to try the process with the Panasonic G9 as I like the finder better and it can generate equally large (or bigger) raw files.

The detail that remains to be see is whether or not the 8-18mm lens will actually resolve 45+ megapixels of resolution on the camera's very dense sensor.

I'm working on getting a test camera to see just that. Stay tuned and we'll see if we can't do a head to head comparison. Either that or I can just bag the whole idea of shooting architecture and keep making portraits. Might be a better use of my time.....


  1. FWIW, I have found this to be a surprisingly effective solution. Rather than use high-resolution mode, however, I prefer to produce panoramas or hi-res shots by stitching images together. I mount the camera in portrait orientation to produce landscapes. This requires a sturdy tripod, flicker-free lighting, and good control over vignetting, but when done right the results can be impressive.

    1. Gordon....are you using any fancy nodal point contraptions....or just aregular tripod head?

  2. I thought of this the moment they announced it.
    The problem for me is that I use flash to light my interiors and the exterior views are compromised by wind.
    I do see it as a solution for interiors made with ambient light only or the ability to load in enough artificial light.
    Of course large continuous light sources defeats the purpose of a small lightweight camera system.

    However, as the bulk of my work rarely gets presented at sizes larger than 1600 pixels across the added bulk of high res is superfluous. I actually believe that I could deliver credible results to all except one client (he like to print 12 feet wide for interior display) with a 20MP M43 system. With the ability to shoot at larger apertures I could arguably reduce the size of my lighting gear but as I already switched to Godox with the Li_ion batteries I won't save much there. But a camera case that went from the current 35+ pounds to ~15 would be greatly welcomed.

  3. Whilst I understand that you’re not a fan of their menus - if you got the fabulous EM1.2 when you use your 12-100 f4 you will get even better stabilisation. Just a point

  4. I like the idea of stitched panoramas. An m4/3 camera with a really good prime
    lens. Portrait format swept horizontally. You can stitch in Photoshop but I've
    found Panorama Factory to be much better.

  5. I’ve had pretty good results with the EM5ii, but watch out, as the hi-res mode does seem to drain the battery quite quickly.

  6. The Olympus OMD EM1 MKII HiRes Mode allows the use of flash. There is a delay setting for flash recharge between each exposure.

  7. Haha! I knew I had a good idea every now and again.

    To answer a few comments on here:

    You can use flash for high res mode, but it has to fire 8 times per exposure. As there can be some fluctuation in the strength of the flash my output size is aimed at about 40 MP to counter the diagonal banding that can (not always) crop up.

    For out of the window visuals, use the 16/20MP ORI file to brush that area back into the image if needed.

    I will often export images at around 30mp for external elements and brush back in the areas affected by movement. While this isn't ideal I generally don't shoot 50 images of the outside of a location... So it simply gets me more mileage.

    The reason I suggested the EM5.2 was just to make the proposition more in line with your price point (used).

    If you want any sharpening advice let me know Kirk, I am a dab hand at HR mode these days.

  8. Of all the samples I have seen, the G9 highres mode is sharper than the EM1mk2 and Em5mk2. However, the G9 does not allow flash to be used as Panasonic cripple that feature in the electronic, silent mode.
    So its given and take. What has not been addressed is if the Olympus test images had noise reduction off. The default is reduction on and its just blurry. First thing any self respecting Olympus owner should do is turn off noise reduction.

  9. Kirk have you tried the Olympus 7-14 f2.8 pro?

    Max from Down Under

  10. I own the G9 and have been experimenting with the HiRes feature. The raw file is very impressive. Have not tried the Jpegs. In my judgment the top line Pany f2.8 zooms (15-35; 35-100) and the Pany/Leica 25 f1.4 have more than enough resolution for the HiRes feature. I would assume the same is true of the Olympus lenses, but I do not own them, so I can't test them. BTW stabilization is a not issue since 1) it is not available in HiRes and 2) you must be on a tripod. I have taken many landscapes and outdoor architecture shots without artifacts problems. But in my flower pictures, the flower must be be absolutely still. My flower pics are with the Olympus 60mm macro lens. It has more than enough resolution and is an excellent macro lens.
    I like to print and I have found that the micro 4/3s files hold up very well at the largest size I print, 17x22. Any decent cell phone is good enough for the web.
    The Pany G9 is a very well thought out camera which I think would impress you. I just got back from a 10 day trip to Yellowstone NP. I used a Nikon D500 and 500mm f4 for wildlife and my Pany kit for everything else. For long telephoto work, Nikon/Canon still rule. But otherwise, I was very pleased with what I am getting from the G9. I've been using two systems for about 4 years now. I've used Nikon since 1968.

  11. I am very interested to hear how the sharpness of the raw file OOC is. In my experience the highres raw files of the EM-5 ii need a substantial amount of clarity and structure in CaptureOne.



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