Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

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Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

Postby kimchi » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:09 pm

I think this is going to be a bit a niche camera. It improves on the E-M5 in lots of small ways, but for most users, and pretty much all new users, it doesn't really have much to offer over the E-M5. Videographers and hybrid shooters are better served by the Panasonic GH3.

The E-M5's IQ appears to be almost identical for most purposes. It has weather proofing and similar performance. It's smaller and significantly cheaper.

For those who own regular 4/3 lenses, the E-M1 will undoubtedly offer significant improvements in usability over current m4/3 bodies and it has a better EVF, but the E-M5's view finder again is perfectly good enough for most purposes. Those who own the 4/3 E3 (or other 4/3 bodies of that generation) will have a nice upgrade path, but E5 users primarily only really have an improved sensor. In initial reports, focusing speed is still not up to par with the traditional Olly DSLR bodies. It is evident from the lack of activity on this Olympus SLR forum that these users are now a small number.

The E-M1 looks to be a fantastic camera, but I can't see it being especially attractive to either "legacy owners" (those with 4/3 glass) or new fotogs moving to the m4/3 system. For both groups, the E5 and E-M5 still offer better performance or cost-effective options.

With the introduction of fast-ish f/2.8 zooms for m4/3 from both Panasonic (12-35mm & 35-100mm) and Olympus (12-40mm & 40-150mm), there's no real reason to purchase the original (albeit excellent) HG or SHG fast zooms because they are more expensive and significantly larger being designed for the flange distance of a camera with a mirror. People buying this 4/3 glass these days must be few and far between.

For me as a Panasonic G3 user, the E-M5 will become increasingly attractive as its price decreases with its attractive weather sealing and IBIS, but there's no reason for me to want the E-M1 as I sold my 4/3 kit a few years back. Besides, m4/3 offers a better selection of primes.

Historically, Olympus has been slow to introduce new sensors to its system, so until the E-M(2?) is released with a significantly improved sensor over the E-M1, I can't see it really catching on.

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Re: Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

Postby thomastaesu » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:05 pm

I don't know about the camera, but 12-40mm f2.8 lens!

With E-M5, I don't want IS on lens, and so, if they deliver similar IQ with less weight and longer reach for less, I'll be excited.
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Re: Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

Postby Bob Andersson » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:49 pm

I'm certainly up for it if I can get my E-M5 sold, especially with that new 12-40mm f/2.8 kit lens. Gordon will no doubt announce his preview officially on the forum at some stage (according to his Twitter feed he's currently in Ireland getting more hands-on time with the E-M1) but there's an example of an in-camera JPEG to salivate over which you can view here. A sample of one is statistically insignificant but loss of the AA filter appears to be no loss at all. My biggest niggle is that the WiFi control via Image Share is limited to smartphone apps and appears not to be available on Windows or Apple computers. :(

Sony RX1R II. Olympus OM-D E-M1 + M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-40mm f/2.8, M.Zuiko Digital ED 40-150mm f/2.8 + 1.4x T/C, Lumix 7-14mm f/4, Leica DG Summilux 15mm f/1.7 ASPH, M.Zuiko Digital 45mm 1:1.8
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Re: Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

Postby RexGig » Tue Sep 10, 2013 8:45 pm

I am paying attention to this new camera, as my wife was/is a big an of Olympus film cameras, and some friends are fans of film and digital Olympus, but it is a bit early. I do not tend to be an early adopter.

Smaller and lighter camera systems, that manage to fill my hand with a comfortably large grip, will catch my attention, simply because my right wrist and thumb are not aging well. The Fuji X-Pro system has the advantage of meeting that description, and making a very good first impression.
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Re: Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

Postby kimchi » Wed Sep 11, 2013 3:04 pm

I have a question for Gordon.

Yours and other bloggers and review sites had comprehensive previews and videos uploaded within 24 hours of the camera's official announcement, so I'm wondering when you typically receive your review models from manufacturers. I assume you've had the E-M1 for quite some time. Also, what kind of non-disclosure agreement do you have to sign as releasing premature info would obviously drive considerable traffic to your site?

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Re: Who would buy the OMD E-M1?

Postby Gordon Laing » Thu Sep 12, 2013 8:46 pm

Hi Kimchi, it varies with every manufacturer and every model to be honest!

Sometimes I will be invited to a preview event, typically 1-4 weeks before launch, to find out about the new product. Normally at this point the product is pre-production, so we can look, but not test. But it does let us prepare preview articles so that when the product is announced we can reveal them seconds later.

Under these circumstances we'll be asked to sign an NDA document which requests that you don't mention it until a certain time and date. As a journalist of over 20 years I always respect these. Yes, you could post before an NDA and get a scoop, but you'd never be invited to anything again. It's not worth it for me.

But at other times the first I'll hear about a product is when it's announced to the public. This is really irritating, especially if other publications have been briefed previously, but that's life. In those circumstances I won't rush to produce a half-baked preview on the same day, but I will drop everything and look into it very carefully, before publishing a more considered and longer article.

The OMD EM1 was an exceptional launch for several reasons. First I was invited to a preview a couple of weeks earlier allowing me to film and edit a preview video as well as prepare a 5000 word preview article - longer than most people's full reviews!

But I was also invited to a launch event on the day of announcement where final production samples were available, allowing me to take and post samples on the same day. This is very unusual. Normally final production models aren't available until some time after the announcement. The good news is the EM1 might even be in the shops in 2-3 weeks.

Hope this all makes sense!

I'll now go and make an official thread for the EM1 and ask that we discuss it there!

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