Olympus OMD EM1 signals the end of four thirds system

by Enche Tjin on September 18, 2013

Olympus OMD EM1’s launch may mark the end of four thirds system camera line. EM1 is designed as a new generation camera that brings together Olympus four thirds system with Olympus micro four thirds system users.

Compared to OMD EM5, EM1 has a brand new hybrid autofocus system. Contrast detect for still objects, and phase detection embedded in image sensor for moving subjects or when you mount four thirds system SLR lenses.  You will need special adapter MMF-3 to mount Olympus SLR lenses.

OMD EM1 is relatively compact, with 17mm f/1.8 lens - Photo from Gizmodo.com

OMD EM1 is relatively compact, with 17mm f/1.8 lens - Photo from Gizmodo.com

With this camera able to accomodate four third system lenses, there is no more reason for Olympus to recontinue its DSLR camera system. Especially Olympus also launches pro quality zoom lenses 12-40mm f/2.8, and 40-150mm f/2.8. This indicate that Olympus finally serious to cater serious /enthusiasts photographers and semi-professionals.

Physically, EM1 is a very high quality product. This camera is splash water resistant , dust and cold resistant up to -10 Celsius . In addition , it also has 5 – axis image stabilizer, which is very useful for taking pictures in poor lighting conditions or when using a long lens / telephoto . All lenses attached to the stabilizer will get the benefit . The stabilizer also helps dampen vibration while recording video .

Unlike the OMD EM5 , EM1 has a much bigger grip built-in. WiFi is also built-in which can be useful for transfering image to other gadget or social media.

Although this news is a breath of fresh air for the faithful Olympus four thirds users , but the new autofocus system EM1 is not perfect and still can’t compete with high-end DSLR camera at the moment. According to some testing and reports , autofocus points mounted on the camera is not the cross-type. Consequently the speed and accuracy is still not very good . But this new technology is a promising start for the future of Olympus mirrorless camera system .

Olympus is a camera company that dare to innovate and focus on the development of a mirrorless camera system, which is more compact than DSLR camera system . Currently , only three brands that still develop DSLR camera system: Canon , Nikon and Pentax .

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