Olympus 4/3s, Meet Olympus m4/3s

As Murphy would have it, when you least expect something or don’t want something to happen, that’s when it happens. So earlier this year, while I was at a local park taking my dogs for a run and doing some photography, I was changing lenses next to the river that runs around the park, when one of my dogs (50kg hound) came bounding up to see what I was doing.

Tas and Jenna - Labradors

Tas and Jenna – Labradors

Of course everything went awry at that moment; I started to slide towards the edge of the embankment and with the camera body in one hand and the lens in another, everything started looking grim. My choice was to hold onto everything and hope for the best, let go of the camera and grab for a handhold, or let go of lens and grab for a handhold. The drop to the river was about two metres and the river itself was a murky brown of unknown depth and I knew the bottom would be horrible mud. I was not going to let go of the 14-35mm lens, so I dropped the camera onto the bank, managed to get a handhold before going over the edge, and watched the E-5 bounce into the river. That was a depressing moment.

Mossvale Park during winter floods - South Gippsland Victoria

Mossvale Park during winter floods – South Gippsland Victoria

The hounds of course were happy as Larry, but the expletives deleted were an indication of my unhappiness. Fortunately, everything was insured, but my dilemma now was what was going to replace the E-5. I submitted my insurance claim and started doing more research on the internet on the availability of another E-5 and the E-M1. The E-5 had been discontinued, though there were enough on eBay, but the more I read about the E-M1, the more I thought it worth taking a chance. So when the claim was approved, I put in an order for the E-M1 and MMF-3 adapter (so that everything was water resistant – ironic eh?) and waited for the delivery.

E-M1 and 14-35mm f2 lens

E-M1 and 14-35mm f2 lens

It didn’t take long for the package to arrive and it was with some excitement that I opened it up to reveal the brand new E-M1. Of course the battery was completely different to that of the Pen cameras, so I had to wait until the new battery was charged before doing any testing (the battery did have a basic charge, but I always like to do a full charge before using a new battery). Once charged, I put on the 14-35mm lens and started testing. Two things were evident from the outset. I loved the EVF, so clear and bright compared to the OVFs of the E-3 and E-5 that I was completely blown away and fully converted to EVFs. The second thing was how quickly the AF worked with the 14-35mm and even in dark conditions, conditions under which the E-5 would struggle, the E-M1 just locked into focus. Things were looking good.

Old water tank, tap and chain - High Country Victoria

Old water tank, tap and chain – High Country Victoria

I naturally followed this up with all of my 4/3 lenses and found the AF to work as well, if not better, than they did on the E-5.

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree - South Gippsland Victoria

Kookaburra sits in the old gum tree – South Gippsland Victoria

I’ve also been especially impressed by the high ISO capability of the E-M1 compared to all previous Olympus cameras. Clearly it’s not equal to that of FF cameras, but It’s quite good nonetheless.

Owl in tree at night - South Gippsland Victoria

Owl in tree at night – South Gippsland Victoria

The more I use the E-M1, the more impressed I am with its capabilities. And I’m ecstatic with the fact that I can effectively use my 4/3 lenses with the E-M1 and do so probably better than ever before. This is going to be a very good relationship afterall.