November 21, 2022
Earlier this year I used OM System’s Olympus OM-1 Micro Four Thirds camera, the last camera to bear the Olympus name and as such this camera is already part of history. Not only that, but it also uses the OM-1 name from the 70’s movie SLR.
OM Digital Solutions, the company formed after selling the imaging (and audio) division, created the OM system and threw all sorts of things at the new OM-1. Designed as a “wow” camera, it certainly delivered on that promise for many (but not all).
Of course, there will always be those who demand a full-frame sensor, but then complain about the size and weight of the camera and lenses in the same sentence.
If you want a truly smaller camera system, you’ll have to go for a smaller sensor, and that’s where the Micro Four Thirds system comes in. Unfortunately, we can’t ignore the laws of physics, and a larger sensor requires a larger camera body and larger lenses.
With a sensor size, all lenses are designed “just right”. You get a range of compact lenses and a massive selection of Micro Four Thirds lenses as literally the first mirrorless camera system to have been around since 2008 (which is like an eternity in digital camera years).
Apart from that, the OM-1 offers an ultra-fast stacked BSI CMOS sensor, enabling frame rates of up to 120 fps for stills, 4K video recording and an IP53 weather protection rating.
Computational photography features include LiveND, in-camera Hi-Res Multi-Shot (for images up to 80MP), Focus Stacking, plus the stunning Live Bulb/Live Composite and Live Time modes you see with how your exposure develops during recording. This is a real game changer if you’re into night photography, and for astrophotography you have Starry Sky AF.
Autofocus features AI subject recognition gives you a choice of motorsports (cars, motorcycles), airplanes (including helicopters), trains (all kinds), birds and animals – especially cats and dogs. You also get stunning high-speed shooting that includes continuous AF at up to 50 fps (with the right lenses) or 120 fps with fixed AF. The menus have finally been improved and there’s a high-resolution 5.76-million-dot electronic viewfinder.
But look beyond the technical capabilities of this camera and simply consider it one of the most rugged or weatherproof cameras out there, thanks to an IP53 rating, with one of the widest lens ranges available, and you have a camera that I would like to take with me, knowing that I have everything I need in a camera.
All that makes it easier for me to take a camera with me when traveling or on a day trip is the camera I take with me.
And that’s where the OM-5 comes in, if you don’t need the ultra-high speed of the OM-1 and want an even smaller camera system, then the OM-5 also offers a weatherproof camera body. You’ll also appreciate the lower price, along with computational photo features unheard of (mostly) outside the world of Olympus/OM System cameras, including LiveND, High-Resolution Multi-Shot, Live-Time modes, Starry Sky AF, and more.
The OM-5 is also a great 4K video camera with unlimited video recording and some of the best in-body image stabilization out there. With a fully articulating screen and a red capture outline, this could be a great vlogging camera, especially if you’re looking for something that can handle the wet and gray weather of the winter months.
In fact, the OM System OM-5 is one of the cheapest weatherproof cameras on the market.
And sure, it might not have the OM-1’s newer sensor, but it still delivers the same beautiful color reproduction and excellent JPEG output that we’ve come to love on Olympus/OM system cameras.
If you’re not a fan of Olympus or OM System, you can also opt for a Panasonic Lumix G camera, giving you even more camera choices, all able to take advantage of the huge range of Micro Four Thirds cameras. to use lenses.
Read the full OM System OM-1 review.
Read the full OM System OM-5 review.
Find the best Olympus cameras available
Find the best Micro Four Thirds lenses
The views expressed in this column are not necessarily those of Amateur Photographer Magazine or Kelsey Media Limited. If you have an opinion on this or any other photography-related issue, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Follow AP on Facebook, TwitterInstagram and YouTube.