September 29, 2014
I've been shooting almost exclusively with my E-M1 and the M.Zuiko 12-40mm PRO lens for over six months now. I'm convinced it's the perfect travel and industrial field camera for pros and enthusiasts, with the following caveats:
1.) At least three fully charged batteries should be carried with the camera whenever out shooting in the field, particularly for all-day events and schedules. One in the body and two extra. Once the level indicator drops below three bars, the power drains pretty quickly.
2.) While the myriad function buttons, lever and dials are an ergonomic fantasy land of control IN THEORY, the camera is just small enough, especially when not using the optional battery grip, where unintentional pushing of pre-set controls WILL happen in a run-and-gun situation. I recently spoke to a famous E-M1 endorser who confided in me that he actually has all his extra function buttons set to OFF. In addition, an Olympus rep reluctantly confessed that the back 1-2 position lever is so sophisticated as to be slightly volatile, explaining why my E-M1 has "locked up" a few times during strenuous, fast shooting periods.
That being said, none of this is enough to detract from a five star rating. This camera (and the image quality of remarkably high-end M.Zuiko lenses) has brought my shots up to a level I never thought I's reach at this price point. This camera body really seems to have been designed and built as relatively "future-proof," as well as immediately usable at any skill level.
Just be careful how you hold it if you're going to set all those fancy function buttons.
September 21, 2014
Seldom do I go out and purchase the latest and greatest of anything. I came from the OM-D film world and had several of the E-Series cameras in the digital world and enjoyed them all. Two months after this camera came out, I bought one. By comparison, I did not purchase the E-5 until it had been out for two years. An early adopter, well this is new territory.
I own seventeen of the lenses designed for the four thirds system, and I have been most impressed with how they delve together with the E-M1 and produce quality and beautiful images, so long as the owner is paying attention and knows what he is doing. It is clear I am the weak link in the equation. I have yet to master nearly all the settings this instrument is capable of, and now I have the version 2 firmware to tackle. Those are my limitations and challenges, and that is what makes this camera a joy to use...it produces in spite of what I bring to the table.
Read the manual, read it again and again, seek out advice and assistance, and most of all experiment. The instrument delivers, and in the right hands it delivers spectacular images. If at first you do not succeed, don't complain, but get out and practice. Your new teacher, the E-M1, is well up to the task. Enjoy it.
August 01, 2014
This is a very complicated camera to operate, and the manual is next to useless. We need more outside manuals for users as it is obvious that the camera companies don't care about anything than sales. I have Friedman's The Complete Guide to Olympus' OM-D E-M1, but its organization leaves a lot to be desired.
July 29, 2014
I have had many Olympus cameras through the years.This is a very complicated camera and not very intuitive. Took me forever to even figure out how to adjust the flash for a flash fill in. I was hoping for a good fast focus with good results. Many of the pictures have way too soft focus with blur when you don't want it. I was trying to shoot some photos last week of a dinner and gave up with the blur and lighting and just grabbed my Oly Tough G2 and that point and shoot was better. I went to the Olympus site for learning and saw they sold a video, but it had universal bad reviews as being worthless information with someone only reading parts of the instruction manual. For a product of this price and supposed quality, there should be an informative video included in the product itself. I bought this camera as an upgrade from my Oly Tough G2 for use underwater and land use. I am now holding off buying the underwater housing because I don't think it will work like I had hoped. I am disappointed.
July 21, 2014
I have owned a number of Olympus compact cameras and have been impressed with their durability, quality and the quality of the photos they were able to produce. I was hoping that moving to this model would provide me with more professional features I could grow into while maintaining the Olympus functional style. This purchase has worked out very well for me, so far.
Features are generally where I would have looked for them on previous models. There's no shortage of professional features, in addition to what I've been used to with compact systems. Olympus also makes one of the most flexible systems available in any format, considering there are direct access buttons for just about everything you would need quick access to, and most are user customizable!
The 'Live View' LCD is crisp and clear. I am able to see it clearly even in bright sunlight. The electronic viewfinder is excellent. Not having worked with an EVF, except with video cameras, and not having worked with SLR viewfinders since using film model SLR's years ago, I was unsure how much I would use the EVF versus the LCD. I am happy with both, and surprisingly very comfortable with the EVF, now that I have gotten used to where the controls are by touch.
I plan on using the camera mostly for photos, not for video shooting. I can definitely say that I am very happy with the camera for my purposes and look forward to many years of enjoying this camera!
July 19, 2014
This is a real good landscape camera, but the the telephoto lenses that I have tried are real soft, unless there is bright sunlight. I have the 14-150mm and the 75-300mm, if it is cloudy forget it, very soft. Olympus needs a 300mm f4.0 for a good price. Very limited on the prime lens choices, unless you have thousands to spend. I also have a 25mm f1.8, this is a good walking around lens. Image stabilizer works good, but you have to set the focal length for it to be effective. I have not tried any of the creative setting yet, still trying to get sharp results. Only about 1/2 of the shots that I have taken are keepers, either too soft or out of focus. I think it is easier to shoot with the full size SLRs.
July 06, 2014
I am loving this wonder. Learning as I go, as I'm not too keen on manuals. Olympus has been in my pocket or backpack for quite a few years, and never disappoints.. the E-M1 rocks it.
July 06, 2014
Purchased the OM-D E-M1 about one month ago and have to say it is just a fantastic camera! Finally, the "big boy" and lenses can go to a new home and make somebody else very happy. OM-D E-M1 is a very intuitive camera to use. It is simply amazing how many features that are packed into that little camera. The OM-D EM-1 paired with the PRO Series glass is win-win scenario.
#1. The batteries are very short-lived they need to be better;
#2. There needs to be a dedicated wireless remote control device. The Olympus Image Share app is nice but it doesn't replace a wireless remote control device;
#3. Olympus please include pouches/cases as well as hoods for your lenses in the box, it is silly to have to piecemeal this stuff after you purchase lens, it isn't like those lenses are given away!
Despite these things it deserves a full 5 stars!
Wish list stuff: PRO Series telephoto super zoom.
July 03, 2014
I was a Nikon shooter, going back to the justly proclaimed F and ending with the D610. The weight, price and size of lenses and bodies was getting to me. After reading reviews of the E-M1 and the m4/3 lenses for it, I went to B&H to try one out; I was hooked! Small, by DSLR standards, light, solid and incredibly flexible. The mysteries of the menu system become clear after 2-3 hours with camera/lens in hand and reading the manual. Customizable beyond belief and intelligently laid out. Once you get past more depth of field than you are used to and lower battery life (buy at least one spare!), this machine takes great pictures. The in camera shake reduction is exceptional and the lenses, even the less expensive ones, are superb.
Get the M.Zuiko 12-40mm PRO and Zuiko ED 35-100mm ranges; the M.Zuiko 9-18mm is an excellent Wide Angle and close to as good as the Zuiko ED 7-14mm offerings and a lot smaller, lighter and cheaper and takes filters!
July 01, 2014
I have been traveling a lot lately with a wonderful but heavy DSLR--the Pentax K3. After hauling two bodies, four lenses, and a flash across two countries and on several flights, I decided to switch to a mirrorless system. I was very worried, of course, that I would lose image quality, especially if I moved to a 4/3 system. But I chose the Olympus E-M1 ultimately because of good reviews and an extensive array of very light lenses. So far I've bought the M.Zuiko 14-150mm (28-300mm equivalent), which is unbelievably small, light, and sharp. I've also bought the M.Zuiko 45mm f1.8 portrait lens (90mm equivalent), which I think has no weight at all. Amazing lens.
I am very happy with the choice. The image quality is terrific, although I lose a little bit when I try to get a really sharp image after cropping 80% or more. Other than that, I'm getting terrific image quality.
The camera is a bit complicated to use. ( I still have lots to learn). An intelligible manual would be a big help. Too much to hope for, right? But I've been able to figure out enough to get the photos I've wanted on my most recent trip. I found a tutorial that looks helpful just before my trip. I'll see.
So--this camera and the lenses I chose have done just what I wanted. Lightened my load without any significant loss of image quality.