The third version of this beginner-friendly point-and-shoot received critical acclaim and favored backpackers and those who travel light thanks to its incredible portability and “one-stop-shop” approach to image capture. The fourth version builds on the success of the previous generations and includes some cheap upgrades.
OLYMPUS OM-D E-M10 MARK IV: IMPORTANT SPECIFICATIONS
20 MP Live MOS sensor (four thirds)
5-axis in-body stabilization
WiFi and Bluetooth capability
121-point contrast-detect AF system
Flip-down, responsive touchscreen display
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV brings a lot to the table – including an improved sensor, better autofocus and a more precise and refined package that could well set the bar for people making the leap from cheaper cameras and a smartphone dare. centric approach.
In this review, we take a look at the camera’s recent updates, where it sits in the market and some highlight features.
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV: design
- Lightweight design supports portability
- The small size increases the travel appeal
- Chunky controls are always at hand
Compared to most of the other beginner-friendly entry-level cameras we’ve reviewed recently, the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV is tiny. It may be small from a design point of view, but Olympus has managed to pack good ergonomics into this version of its best-selling model.
For a camera that almost fits in the palm of your hand, it feels comfortably chunky, aided by a useful and well-formed right grip that allows for one-handed operation. The black and silver color approach reflects a trend for designs on small cameras that hark back to an earlier era and resembles the brand’s famous Olympus Trip 35mm film model, one of the most recognizable cameras in the world. It’s clearly the same vein the E-M10 Mark IV is based on – we think that’s no bad thing.
On top of the camera, although they feel slightly plasticky, the chunky dials and retro-inspired circulator dials sit quite proudly on top of the case – with nice textured surfaces, they’re again easy to operate with one hand and have a firm and reassuring effect on them. The spring-loaded power button and mode dials ultimately don’t feel particularly premium, but for a camera at this price point that’s aimed at beginner photographers, we can’t really rate it for that.
On the back, the main thing that catches the eye is the expandable, tiltable, and extendable screen, although we would have liked to see it unfolded as well. For travel photographers, content creators, and those who like to shoot a lot of “top-down” shots, we imagine this feature would be particularly useful as this design piece greatly aids in shooting from odd or acute angles.
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV: Performance
- Revised autofocus claims to improve tracking of moving subjects
- The new Micro Four-Thirds 20MP contributes significantly to the overall image quality
- The 5-axis image stabilization is a welcome addition for vloggers
The operation of the camera is quite simple from the start, the system is ready to use within a few seconds. Not necessarily the fastest, but fast enough and perfectly adequate for most everyday applications.
The quality of the tilting screen is particularly impressive, and we found the clarity and resolution to be spot on. By pressing “Info” on the back of the camera you can cycle through the different displays of the system. In automatic mode, which we’ve rarely felt the need to deviate from, you can only select the screen, a graph showing live dynamic range and other touch-sensitive options that enable face tracking, on-screen shutter releases and even an internal horizontal and vertical stabilization aid , so you can correct shaky positioning. All very intuitive, easy to use and really useful for the user.
Olympus has made a lot of its improved autofocus for the MK IV version of the camera and we can safely say it delivers. The camera’s autofocus ability is among the best in its class and has never failed to capture motion at a reasonable distance. At 15 frames per second in burst mode, it also delivered for a small camera when it came to capturing the right moments – particularly when it came to street photography and wildlife.
Also particularly impressive was the new 20MP sensor, which is an improvement over the 16MP in the previous incarnation. Even with the inherent limitations of a small Micro Four Thirds system, the camera responded well to a wide range of different situations, from landscapes to portraits. We believe that most people who upgrade from a smartphone will notice the difference immediately.
We tested the 14-42mm lens, which is fine for everyday photography and a good all-around option, but if we had one gripe, it’s the maximum aperture isn’t particularly wide – only f/3.5- 5.6 over the range of zooms. EV compensation can get around this somewhat, but if you’re shooting the night sky be prepared to play around with the settings a bit to find a good balance between shutter settings, stability, ISO and overall noise reduction. However, the 5-axis image stabilization does a great job and comes into its own somewhat in video mode with effective calming available for the 4K 30fps option.
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV: Functionality
- Functional and easy to use
- Its portability makes everyday use much easier
- A variety of modes add depth to a beginner-friendly camera
Daily use of the camera is very easy and what we’ve come to expect from the modern era of beginner-friendly entry-level cameras. For those just starting out, we liked the modes, which offer a variety of different looks, from HDR filters to panorama modes and various other filters familiar to most smartphone users.
While the camera is best used in automatic mode, more serious photographers have all the usual ISO, shutter settings and aperture options you’d expect, but we didn’t feel they particularly stood out – in many cases this is a camera you need . I will rarely leave the “Auto” position on the dial.
With fast autofocus coupled with its lightweight approach and build, using the camera on the go is easy, and with the small, lightweight 14-42mm lens we tested, it can easily slip into a backpack or side be put in your pants pocket. This is one of the camera’s main selling points and will benefit those looking to upgrade from a smartphone – with the combination of portability and simple, quick-to-understand operation, beginners will notice the difference in their image capture almost immediately. For video lovers, we would have liked to see a mic connector, which is an odd omission, but we can understand why Olympus took the step to remove the connector to avoid stepping on models further up the line.
Should I buy the Olympus OM-D E-M10 MK IV?
If you’re new to more complex cameras, want to learn more about the art of photography, or just need something with 4K video and a little more flexibility than your smartphone, we’d highly recommend the Olympus OM-D E-M10 MK IV.
As an entry-level system, there’s also an emphasis on affordability, and we’ve been impressed with the offerings currently available – not only does it offer good value for money, its size, portability and the fact that it’s easy to transport will certainly appeal to travel-conscious users . The design is stylish, with retro elements borrowed from other Olympus systems over the years. Intermediate or experienced photographers might get frustrated quickly, but for most people who need a simple point-and-shoot, this is one of the best we’ve tested in a long time.
If this product is not for you
The price range and feature set Olympus has packed into this tiny MFT camera means it’s in a crowded market. For this reason, we recommend that you inform yourself about the range of small, compact systems before you buy. Other cameras on the market like the Sony A6100 (opens in new tab)are better suited for sports photography due to their increased burst rate and for excellent image quality we also recommend looking at the Fujifilm X-T30 (opens in new tab) because of its 26.1 MP sensor. If you’re a vlogger or want to get serious about videography, we also recommend checking out something with a microphone jack, such as B. the Canon PowerShot G7 X Mark III (opens in new tab).