Olympus is starting the year with a bang by announcing two cameras and a lens, with two on sale as soon as this month!
If you follow rumors, you'll already have a suspicion that 2020 is going to have a lot of new cameras coming, some of which Olympus has just announced.
OM-D E-M1 Mark III
The first announcement is arguably the most exciting for photographers. Aimed at professionals, but with the focus on mobility and AI, the E-M1 Mark III aims to push the limits of micro four thirds cameras. While some of the physical details may not turn heads, the computing side of the camera ought to. With handheld 50 megapixel in-camera composites, auto star focus, high-speed sequential shooting, a dedicated app, IBIS, and Live ND mode, there's a lot to pique one's curiosity. I have spent the best part of a week testing this camera in challenging conditions; a detailed hands-on review is coming soon.
- Sensor: 20.4 megapixels
- TruePic™ IX dual quad core processor
- 121 point (all cross type) on-chip phase detection autofocus system
- 5-Axis Image Stabilization, up to 7.5 stops of compensation
- 2.36-million dot EVF
- 3-inch Vari-Angle rear touchscreen
- Dust, splash, and freezeproof
- 15 fps mechanical mode, 60 fps electronic shutter
- 50-megapixel handheld high-resolution mode
- Live ND
- 4K 30 fps video
M.Zuiko 12-45mm f/4 Pro
To pair with the new body, there is a new lens. With a focal length of 12-45mm (equivalent to 24-90mm on a full frame camera) this versatile and tiny lens is light, portable, and has an incredibly close minimum focus distance, bordering on the. In fact, I used it for photography, and I would consider it macro. The f/4 widest aperture may put some off, but I implore you not to write this little guy off.
- 12-45mm (24-90mm)
- 12 elements in 9 groups
- 2 HR lenses, 1 DSA lens, 1 Super HR lens, 2 Aspherical lenses, 2 ED lenses
- Dust and splash-proof
- Maximum magnification: 0.5x (35mm)
- 7 circular aperture blades
Price: $649.99 (USD)
Next, we have the second camera to be announced, and it's a new addition to Olympus's PEN Lite series. The aim of this camera is clearly to appeal to amateurs and enthusiasts who want a camera on them without the bulk of carrying the typical dedicated device. Despite being small and light, this rather beautiful body contains a hidden flash, touch screen with 180-degree rotation, automatic selfie mode, interchangeable lenses, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, IBIS, and 4K video. Clearly aimed at vloggers and bloggers, the PEN E-PL10 makes use of the same app that the OM-D EM-1 Mark III pairs with, allowing instant transfer of photos for social media. Not to mention it has multiple AI features of the EM-1 III too, like live composite, multiple exposure, and customizable filters (if that's your thing)!
- 16.1 megapixels
- TruPic™ VIII processor
- 121 contrast-detection AF points
- 3-axis IBIS
- 3-inch tilting touchscreen
- Live composite, selfie mode, selfie video mode, video clips mode, advanced photo mode
- 8.6 fps continuous rate
Price: $599.99 (USD)
My hands-on review of the OM-D E-M1 Mark III is coming soon, as I've already spent multiple days shooting with it, in the Costa Rican jungle no less. I have always been skeptical about MFT cameras, but I must say that the processor Olympus has put together can perform some highly impressive maneuvers.
The 12-45mm lens is shockingly tiny and light, particularly for me, as I am used to full frame or medium format bodies and lenses, which at least double the size and weight of this Olympus new offering. While the widest aperture is a little disappointing, the lens was sharp, and as I've mentioned, the minimum focus distance was superb and doubled as a macro lens for me.
The PEN E-PL10 I have only seen in Olympus presentations and in press releases, and while I'm not the target market for it, it's a well designed and attractive body with a heck of a lot of features that could allow amateurs to create shots otherwise outside of their skill level.
What are your thoughts on these releases? Do you use Micro Four Thirds cameras?