Olympus OM-D E-M1 Review Summary
Olympus OM-D E-M1 Assessment
Taking over from the first OM-D, the E-M1 delivers nearly impeccable performance worthy of its flagship status. This model features a state-of-the-art 16 megapixels CMOS sensor with built-in Phase-Detect autofocus while keeping its predecessor's 5-axis image-stabilization and super-sonic dust-reduction systems. It is also one of the few Micro Four-Thirds cameras without an anti-alias filter. Combined with the new autofocus system, the E-M1 is designed to take full-advantage of Four-Thirds lenses made for Olympus DSLRs.
The high-resolution sensor of the E-M1 delivers quality that rivals DSLRs. It shows very low image noise until ISO 1600 and remains usable up to ISO 12800 for mid-size prints and 25600 for small ones. It also shows some impressive dynamic-range and latitude for situations of varying contrast. The multi-segment metering system is reasonably good and only clips highlights a little more than ideal.
While automatic white-balance is quite good, colors never look perfectly natural. This is improvable either by shooting RAW or by tweaking image-parameters. Displays preview WB correctly but not exposure, other than in M mode, so reviewing images is essential.
The most impressive aspect of the Olympus OM-D E-M1 is its performance. This mirrorless camera is fast and its Contrast-Detect AF system rivals DSLRs. It remains responsive at all times and the superb 2.4 megapixels EVF manages to keep up with fast action even while shooting at 10 FPS.
The newly designed and freezeproof body provides one of the most customizable interfaces of any digital camera. With such an interface and performance, the OM-D E-M1 is suitable for professionals, something that very few mirrorless cameras manage.
|Low image-noise up to ISO 1600||Below average color accuracy|
|Impressive dynamic-range||More over-exposure than usual|
|Reliable Automatic White-Balance||Not always Exposure-Priority and frequently wrong Live-Histogram|
|Superb built-in stabilization||Poorly placed tripod mount|
|Virtually no shutter-lag||Low battery life|
|Fast contrast-detect AF||Video cuts last second|
|Great shot-to-shot speed|
|Great EVF resolution and refresh rate|
|Unique Live-Bulb mode|
|Excellent build quality||Excellent Excellent|
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Olympus E-M1 Facts
Sensor-Size: 17 x 13mm
Actual size when viewed at 100 DPI
|16 Megapixels Mirrorless||ISO 100-25600|
|Micro Four-Thirds Mount|
|5-Axis Built-in Stabilization, 4-Stop Improvement||Full manual controls, including Manual Focus|
|0.50" Built-in EVF 2.4 Megapixels (0.74X)||Custom white-balance with 2 axis fine-tuning|
|Automatic Eye-Start sensor||Spot-Metering|
|2 Axis Digital Level||Hot-Shoe|
|Weatherproof down to -10C||Stereo audio input|
|Built-in Dust Reduction||Lithium-Ion Battery|
|10 FPS Drive, 95 Images||Secure Digital Extended Capacity|
|1920x1080 @ 30 FPS Video Recording|
|3" LCD 1 Megapixels|
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