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Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained

 

 

 

Features and innovations that set the E-M1 apart

Thanks to face-to-face briefings with senior Olympus engineers, designers and product planners at an unprecedented and preview of the OM-D-E-M1 exclusive to Four Thirds User at Olympus' headquarters in Hachiochi, just outside Tokyo, we have detailed knowledge of the new camera. That was over a month ago and we have also been using and testing a sample camera with version 1.0 firmware for the last two weeks. Keeping a lid on all this in advance of the official launch today has been an extremely challenging task! Watch out for a series of articles generated by our trip to see Olympus in Japan over the next few days, including an interview with Mr.Haruo Ogawa, president of the Olympus camera division.

Only a production version of the extremely rare m.Zuiko 12-40mm f/2.8 Pro zoom, which will be the E-M1's primary kit zoom has eluded us but we have been promised one to try later this week. I'm sure we will also get our hands on one later today at the European launch event at Castle Leslie in Ireland.

This article focuses on the new and improved features of the E-M1 in bite-sized categories, starting with - the sensor:

New 16 megapixel LiveMOS sensor

The E-M1 has a new 16 megapixel LiveMOS sensor, the first sensor upgrade from Olympus since the OM-D E-M5 was launched at the beginning of 2012. It's also the first sensor from Olympus that does without an anti-aliasing filter and so maximises resolution. Olympus says that high ISO noise performance (in RAW data) has been improved compared to the previous 16 megapixel sensor used in the E-M5, E-P5, E-PM2, and E-PL5. There is also on-chip phase-detection autofocus (PDAF) for the first time - more about that in the section about autofocus features.

Incidentally, if you thought that Olympus simply gets a chopped down version of someone else's off-the shelf sensor, think again. According to Ogawa san Olympus works very closely with their sensor partner and the sensor itself incorporates unique technologies developed by Olympus in-house for sensors originally developed for its medical imaging products.

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Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained

Four Thirds User editorial team Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
[ Four Thirds User was exclusively briefed in Tokyo by the designers and engineers behind the new OM... (more)

Snibbo Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
So, the $64,000 question - how does it perform with 4/3 lenses in PDAF mode?... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
AF? of course there will be various reports, but there is this along with 43rds is dead not exactl... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks for the report, but I didn't see (maybe I missed it) a detail on the ISO range. Does it go d... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
it has ISO 100, but this is suspected will actually reduce DR IOW its natural minimum ISO is 200... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks Riley!... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Not a word about manual focus?... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
ans, was there something specific you were looking for regarding MF?... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Focus confirmation with legacy lenses.... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
K, that's a good point. The EM5 does that, I would assume that the EM1 would also.... (more)

IainMacD Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
"The E-M1 will only be available in black finish" Dam, I really wanted a yellow one :eek: *LOL... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Wow, yours must be different than mine... The best I can get is a couple of "aids" to focus. One is... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
ine puts the green dot up. Do you have the latest firmware?... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
I guess not. I'll look for it...... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
You are talking about 1.7?... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
old the fort... I had to go confirm what I just claimed and I can't get it to do it either (display ... (more)

Ross Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Do you mean a Stanley Tape Measure that takes photos? *whack (another Aussie used that one & I l... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
I was almost the happiest person in the world. Thanks for that last reply as I had the camera plugge... (more)

slothead Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Sorry for the run-around Hans, and by the way, I only have 1.6 also. Yellow would be pretty cool! ... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
[B] ok update time[/B] well known pro Douglas Brown has also tried EM1 AF,and with 43rds lenses. Fi... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
look here: about 10 mins in no focus peaking unless lens is electrically connected so no FP... (more)

T-Lama Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Can't wait for September 23rd, when we should have a chance to try it around here! BLN-1 batterie... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Sorry for the late response - travelled to Ireland for an Olympus launch briefing this morning. ... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
On the E-P5 the low (ISO) setting works really well compared to ISO 200. Ian... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
There is no MF focus confirmation but of course you now have the option of focus peaking :D Ia... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
I found that the very fast lenses like the 14-35 f/2.0 focus very well in low light. Technically,... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
I'm not sure that is correct (manual lenses and focus peaking) - one of the R&D guys from Tokyo is ... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
perhaps the best refutation of the published findings of others, 'if' the need for such a thing wer... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Focus peaking definitely works with fully manual lenses but what you may have seen is that it needs ... (more)

mhobart Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Have there been performance tests of any non-Olympus FT lenses on the E-M1 (for example the Sigma 10... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
yep Without electric contacts the body of course does not know if you are turning focusing rin... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Wee Man from the e-group is here with his 150 macro and a 50-500 Bigma. I'll be seeing him shortly a... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
damn, I just found out thats exactly what they are doing! well that gives it about 2/3 stop e/v o... (more)

mhobart Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks Ian, you're the best :-)... (more)

Ross Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thank you Ian. I will be keen to know if it (150 macro) can perform better than on my E30.... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Ed tried both lenses on the E-M1 and was quite happy with the focusing speed. I'll let him fill you ... (more)

mhobart Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks Ian! That's reassuring :-)... (more)

Ross Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
That's good news. Thanks Ian. *chr... (more)

hschnee Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Well, this big variation in focusing experiences is confusing! Douglas Brown (in his DPReview commen... (more)

Dan in NC Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Perhaps there are some quality control issues and DPR got a bad example.... (more)

mhobart Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Robin Wong was also happy with the focusing :-)... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Doug's pretty steady [quote=hschnee] DPReview is typically very thorough and accurate. So I wonde... (more)

Hans Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks Ian, looks like it does have some sort of focus peaking. Whether it is $1599 better than Key ... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
The sample images in my hands-on review include several shot/shot action sequences using C-AF wit... (more)

dhazeghi Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Interesting. What are your impressions of S-AF (not C-AF) speed? On my E-30 I usually found S-A... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
S-AF is generally faster than an E-5; the E-M1 seems to work the lens harder. However the E-M1 will... (more)

hschnee Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks for the additional detail, Ian. I assume Olympus are claiming that the E-M1 [B]using older... (more)

Wee man Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
In the time I had with the camera I found focus speed good ; I normally use an E5 I tried my Olym... (more)

Ross Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
I think it needs to be asked. How does this E-M1 compare in PDAF to that of the new Canon 70D in Liv... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
it seems umm DPR have had a change of heart about M1 focussing it begins: [I]Having gone back and ... (more)

dhazeghi Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Excellent. Not really worried about really low lighting - there are lots of good m4/3 primes and... (more)

mbieser Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
What a chicken-feces way to try to save face! Do any of the review sites actually take some kind o... (more)

mhobart Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Everyone is in a rush these days to get their "preview" online first. That's why the more co... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Im as animated as anyone else about DPR from time to time probably wiser I try to stay above some t... (more)

mhobart Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thanks for that useful link, I'll be taking a look at it. Though my how things have changed when... (more)

Ross Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Like opinions on the E-5 & how it is used with different settings with varied results. "[I][B]Olymp... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
OK, in that case you will find pretty normal focusing speed - maybe you will notice faster AF but... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
S-AF is as good or better in normal light levels. My previous comments about low light were actua... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Olympus and Panasonic have been claiming their Micro Four Thirds (contrast detect) AF is faster t... (more)

whatapicture Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
DPR are one of the better and more thorough review sites but they do have slight reputation for maki... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Hah! Forgot that to show an E-5 doing PDAF focusing you need to video the optical finder; not eas... (more)

Riley Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
you do get the audio beep though... (more)

Ross Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
But we have every confidence you will do it it brilliantly. ;) :D... (more)

stevegold321 Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
Thank you for sharing the link. :)... (more)

dhazeghi Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
A few quick questions. 1) When you're using the EVF, does the camera switch back to the LCD when ... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
1. Menus are only shown on the back screen but you can now review shots on your memory card in the ... (more)

Ian Re: Olympus OM-D E-M1 new features explained
I have made a correction to the article - Four Thirds lenses are NOT distortion corrected in the E-M... (more)

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