(FT4) E-5 (E-D1) coming on September 14! E-system to go mirrorless sooner or later…


I just found a post on Forum.fourthirdsphoto.com from a user who claims to know some details about the E-5 and about the future of the E-system. Why should the info he is writing be correct? Because he gave 3-4 informations other sources already told me (and I didn’t post them on 43rumors). That’s why in my opinion he is telling the truth!

Here the text:

A brand new E-System DSLR poised to replace the Olympus E-3 will be officially announced on September 14 2010, which means Photokina time this year. The in-house project code for this camera is E-D1. There will be some significant technological statements made by this camera. The expected cost of this camera will be similar to when the E-3 was first launched. If you look back to those days (August 2007), you will find out what the expected price is in your own country. I cannot reveal anymore than what you now know. As for the demise of the E-System, the competition won’t be happy to hear that this will continue alongside the Micro FourThirds Pen-series. As to whether both systems will merge, yes, it will very soon do that. For those who talk about a professional Micro FourThirds, it is on the cards but whether or not there is a market demand that will justify Olympus releasing it is another matter altogether. Sure, a Micro FourThirds Pen model with a built-in EVF as well as professional-type features will find its way into the market. In fact I believe that if Olympus can get their act together for 2010, you could see this as a finished product and in black. Otherwise expect it sometime early Q1 2011. Make sure you realise that I’m saying: professional-type does not mean professional-class camera. It just has similar features but it will not be built like, say, the E-3.
We know that our Pen lenses presently are on the optically slow side. There are plans to introduce the kind of lenses that serious users are looking for. The idea here is to first ’embed’ the system, give it a chance to take off in the market, introduce it to the greater mass public and to try to appeal to them. Faster lenses are always possible and in time we will begin to bring them on. There are also other ‘factors’ why faster lenses are not out yet but it’s not possible to talk about them here.
Summary 1: E-System will not discontinue.
Summary 2: Micro FourThirds Pen-series will not replace E-System
Summary 3: E-System will eventually go mirror-less
Summary 4: New replacement for E-3 will be announced this Photokina

It’s not surprising that Olympus has a penchant for attracting a greater degree of controversy than its competitors. When you decide to be an innovator or just to be different from others, you’re bound to have to deal with a larger proportion of critics in the market. I’ve been associated with Olympus for more than 30 years now and in that period of time, I’ve not seen things being different.

Right now the most difficult challenge for Olympus is what best they must do not to drop the ball. MicroFourThirds has been an astonishing ride for the company; certainly far more so than we thought. Sure, Olympus knows they were on to a good thing but none of us had expected the market to react so positively. We’re now at crossroads as to how the union of Micro FourThirds and (Classic) FourThirds should go about, how best to introduce mirrorless, how to mix and blend the old with the new lenses and so much more.

At Olympus the number of pixels in the sensors we use is passé stuff. Beyond a certain point, it’s not as important as some other competitors make it out to be. We’re focusing on the kinds of issues that we know we need to address and we need to do all these without affecting our strong points. So there’s a lot more to do yet, a lot more life to FourThirds than some believe and certainly a whole lot more action to expect.

While it’s not likely that we would unsettle our traditional rivals; we have also come to understand that it’s far better for us to concentrate on our own game than to worry about what our neighbours do. Let the Joneses be Joneses; it suits them and frankly it also suits us.

For us, maximising our own game and playing to our potential is far more important to our customers.

So gentlemen, continue to enjoy your Olympus FourThirds (and Micro FourThirds) equipment. Know that you’re special because of your choice!

  • Bu

    “none of us had expected the market to react so positively.”

    So stop pandering about and build a pro-grade MFT with fast lenses, instead of “give it a chance to take off in the market” – make it and people will buy it, faff around, and we get bored.

  • Jaydee

    I think that’s what’s happening next, cos the system already took off. Now all we have to do is sit tight and wait for the action to start.

  • That is quite a long post, and all it tells me that I didn’t know before is the release date for the E3 replacement. The rest is waffle.

  • Javi V.

    To much information so early in the morning…. :-D

  • Duarte Bruno

    It’s really amazing… :(
    No Panasonic Gx competition for another year!!!
    They will probably launch an E-P XS 1 since they haven’t been busy doing nothing that suits me in m43 (no upper model, no fast lenses, zit …)

    Congratulations for nothing Olympus, I’ll find my way to a GH2 and keep the stabilized 14-140 after all, thanks!

  • shatteredsky

    >>So stop pandering about and build a pro-grade MFT with fast lenses, instead of “give it a chance to take off in the market” – make it and people will buy it, faff around, and we get bored.<<

    That is exactly what I am waiting for since the announcement of m43. Waiting and waiting …


  • Miroslav

    Nice to know they’re up to something. They should just try to make m4/3 adapters/modules that enable fast AF on 4/3 and lenses of some other popular mounts, one quality body with EVF and they’d be surprised by even more positive reaction of the market. Then again, we may be too impatient …

  • Duarte Bruno

    TOO IMPATIENT? You must be joking!!!! What have they done so far??? Are they even listening??

    Panasonic are on their way to release their 4th upper m43 model offer (yes, yes, G1 then GH1 then G2 now GH2) when that all that Tilt and Swivel LCD Master (aka Olympus) has made was the E-P2, which (surprise, surprise!) has no Tilt and Swivel LCD… :(

    Make no mistake. Olympus is in it for reaping the lower market and saving their 4/3 ass lenses line without confronting too much that user base. :(
    Well… they are confronting me. I’m a big fan of their in body IS and I think it’s wonderful that is works wonders with lenses that are as old as me :) but Panasonic is the real racing horse here and they are winning in all tracks!!! :)

  • napalm

    dont know what the fuzz is about. if you people think that the Panasonic mFT line is great then buy it. anyway, mFT is a shared system so doesnt matter what kind of lenses you have as long as it has the same mount

    if you read Oly’s reputation they are not known to release the right bodies at the right time. but when they do release something, expect something new and unconventional

    anyway only 3 months to go and we’ll finally see something real, hopefully.

  • napalm

    i think its nice enough to quote this statement:

    “It’s not surprising that Olympus has a penchant for attracting a greater degree of controversy than its competitors. When you decide to be an innovator or just to be different from others, you’re bound to have to deal with a larger proportion of critics in the market. I’ve been associated with Olympus for more than 30 years now and in that period of time, I’ve not seen things being different.”

  • Tom

    Personally I’m not too excited about pro MFT as I wouldn’t fork out the coin for it anyway. The idea of a MFT with built in EVF, retro metal body (like EP2), and sharp JPEGs like EPL1 sounds great to me!

  • Neville

    I make it two months 5 days (NZer) not even three months – yeah!!
    I quite like the idea of mirrorless system as long as it works well and I can see the focus accurately, especially if it gives me DOF preview without having to push a button. No mirror movement at 15th of a second…

    The biggest need for me isn’t noise with the new LR algorithms, its getting the detail at high ISO that I am hanging out on. Certainly the difference between my E620 and my wife’s EPL-1 is noticeable in its improvement but it needs to be more. 1600 usable minimum.

  • Miroslav

    Look at what the others have done over the last 12 months:
    Canon – 3 ILC bodies
    Nikon – 3
    Pentax – 1
    Panasonic – 3
    Sony – 8 ( WTH :) ? )
    So, Olympus with three ( EP-1 and EP-2 being the same … ) is about average. The problem is their system is new and we all want it completed as soon as possible, body wise and lens wise. At the same time, they are trying not to compete with Panasonic.

    Don’t get me wrong, I am also on the Oly side of m4/3 because of IBIS and would also like a movable LCD ( a Canon G11 styled/sized body would be perfect for me ), but I think we are expecting a bit too much from the company the size of Olympus.

  • Nathan

    I like the G1 and G2 but I gotta have in-body stabilization. Waiting for the Olympus. Sorry, Panasonic- it’s just that I LIKE the ability to use all kind of lenses, I like the 4/3 Sigma 30mm F1.4, and I’m not going to pay for the image stabilizer and gyros with every lens. It’s just not gonna happen.

  • Russ

    “none of us had expected the market to react so positively.”

    I interpret that as “we ran out of production capacity” which means new models have to wait.

    Anyway, an E-3 replacement at Photokina will be very welcome.

  • So, release and pricing information! Good to know. Now I have a valid reason to not buy my girlfriend expensive gifts for a while. :-D

    Anybody remember what the E-3’s release price was in the US? I thought it was almost $2500, but that’s just a guess. This article says $1700:
    BTW, the title is amusing: “Is the Olympus E-3 dSLR unfashionably late?” Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose!

    One more thought: I really hope that Olympus’ marketing development does not let them release it with the name E-D1…”ED” has some unflattering meanings, at least in the US…

  • This would be perfect… but

    This is my vision or what I need right now :D
    First of all we need assisting light for better focusing in low light conditions. Come on Olympus! You did it once so now it’s time to make it again. If I have it in the new model – I am happy. Since I am dreaming – 12mp and aspect ratios like in E-30 please. I like the art mode idea, but all I need is the tilt shift filter. Of course HD recording is needed and maybe even auto focus because if you do something, do it right. A bigger LCD and make it with a polarization filter because if you are making a camera for shooting in the wild it is very hard to see what you photographed because of the sun. I don’t know if faster AF is needed here… So that is all I think. Oh, but we need lenses with SWD. Imagine this combo:
    25mm f1.4 SWD
    50mm macro f2 SWD and a switch for macro mode
    150mm f2 SWD
    35-150mm f2 SWD
    70-300mm f3,5 SWD
    If even half of my dreams would come true…

  • TropicalYeti

    I wonder where modular camera(s) from last week have evaporated.
    I mean – we are talking FT4 rumors in last few weeks, but Olympus
    intentions (according to informers) take total turnaround every few days.
    What’s next week? Some new revolution in camera bulding again?

    • admin

      Hi Tropical!
      The modular camera is real. And as I told you the question wa sonly if it would come at Photokina or not. According to our sources not a full modular but a partially modular camera is coming. Please read carefully before to write FALSE informations!

  • Eric

    If true that really sucks. Why do none of these companies (aside from Leica) not think there is a market for a small pro-grade camera? I’m borrowing a friends D700 this week, I love the sensor, the build quality, and the image quality, but the camera itself is twice as large as it needs to be. I simply won’t buy one for that reason alone. I’d rather have an Olympus, but it sounds like my money will go to the Panasonic GF2 if they do indeed put an EVF into the body. Also, although I may have to sell a kidney to get it, the rumor about the Leica EVIL camera sounds highly promising. Is it really that much of an effort for Olympus to release a 12mm f/2, 25mm f/1.5, and a 45mm f/1.4 as well as magnesium built body to go along with them? That would be enough to appease most enthusiasts for the time being.

  • Newsed1

    ‘ As to whether both systems will merge, yes, it will very soon do that.’

    An indication that the E-D1 will be followed up by the modular body, which is probably no more than a switchable M43/43 lens mount.? A couple of years down the line I’d expect to see the E-D2 to go mirrorless and switch to an EVF.

    I owned the full E1 kit and then threw my Nikon D2x kit in for the full E-3 system. What a disappointment. The sensor suffered from blowing out backgrounds and was just too noisy. The first time I used it abroad, the faulty software caused the camera to lock-up when the grip was attached.

    My EP-1 sensor is better in every way. Let’s hope the E-D1 gets a version of the new Panasonic sensor due in the GH2.

  • Alfons

    I just bought my E-3.

    I knew the replacement was comming soon but I had weddings to shoot before that. I think I’ll buy 12-60mm as soon as I can, but the other lens options are not that great. Wonderful 7-14mm and 35-100mm lenses are damn expensive and heavy!

  • erik

    Why is everyone pleading for a tilt and swivel LCD? yes, I know that people like them for taking photos at extreme angles, but for me it’s just another moving part to break – and I’ve had them that have broken. good riddance…

    However, I am impatient like so many of you. I still haven’t purchased a M4/3 because the current models don’t deliver exactly what I want. I’ve come pretty darn close a couple times, but I really want to see what’s to come in September.

    If it’s pro-featured with built in EVF, then I’ll probably go for it. If not, then I’ll still be able to get an EP2 or GF1 at a great price.

  • Alfons you’ll probably love the 12-60. I also have the 7-14 and it doesn’t feel as heavy as you might think. In size, it’s only a little larger than the 12-60. But save up for the 50-200 first if you don’t have it. It is superb.

  • “Why is everyone pleading for a tilt and swivel LCD? yes, I know that people like them for taking photos at extreme angles, but for me it’s just another moving part to break ”

    You are sadly mistaken if you think the only use for a tilt and swivel LCD for taking photos at extreme angles, I use for every single shot I take and old fold the screen back in when the camera is switched off.

    Uses for tilt and swivel LCD:
    1. camera can be held away from your face when doing portraits (people hate smiling back at a face that has a large dark object in front of it.)
    2. can shoot literally shoot from the hip with the screen face up so not drawing attention to yourself
    3. can shoot around corners/over walls etc
    4. self portraits
    5. sometimes extreme angles is the right angle
    6. when shooting into the sky screen can be faced down for easier viewing

    I have been using cameras with tilt and swivel LCDs for 3 years and now own 4 cameras with out any sign of them being fragile…

  • I.M.Feoyon

    People, the is a hint and look on all new pantens so Olympus have develop the last years, a good ide what so coming.

  • Alfons,

    I second what John said about both the 12-60 & 50-200. They’re both fantastic lenses, and together offer an excellent two camera solution for wedding & event photography. The 14-54 is also a superb lens (and much cheaper), but I like the extended reach on both ends with the 12-60. I would suggest the SWD versions of both as the AF is noticably faster.

    My 12-60 & 50-200 are my primary wedding lenses, with a Sigma 30 f1.4 in the bag for portraits & low light. I haven’t used the 7-14, but am very happy with the 9-18, especially for environmental portraits. I carry it in the bag for weddings, but generally find the 12-60 wide enough, even for the really big group shots with everyone in attendance.

    Best of luck, and most of all, have fun!

  • Miroslav

    Uses for tilt and swivel LCD:
    7. in bright sunshine, the screen can be put at such an angle that is easer to view – replaces OVF/EVF in such situations
    8. you can protect the screen when not using the camera by turning it inwards
    9. shooting from the crowd ( concerts, rallies etc. )

    You do not need to move it if you are afraid of the damage. Just use it as a fixed one.

  • erik

    @YouDidn’tDidYou & Miroslav.

    I know why people like to use Tilt LCD – I just don’t care for them.

    it’s great that you guys enjoy using it and that it fits your style of shooting. I just don’t prefer them and it doesn’t fit mine. It’s probably a holdover from 30 years of SLR use. I’d rather have a built in EVF and keep the LCD turned off most of the time.

    But that’s why more products are needed – so everyone can find the camera that fits the way they like to work.

    For me, I’d like to have an all metal M4/3 camera with analog style controls – shutter speed knob and aperture rings on my prime lenses. No art filters (except monochrome options), no special shooting modes (like “sport”), no zooms, no video, etc. I just want a rugged, well designed, straightforward machine. Essentially a M4/3 version of the Digilux2/DMC-L1 with exchangeable lenses, if I were to define it.

    However, I know that my preferences aren’t that marketable, so I have to live with compromises and that’s okay. A camera must appeal to a mass market in order to be viable. there will always be fashionable features that, while fun in the short term, really aren’t that valuable in every day use (Diorama, I’m looking at you…).

    Sure, I could buy a Leica M9, but I don’t believe a camera should cost that much.

  • Tom

    Erik – I agree – that would be a great camera (although I would keep art filters). But it seems to me that a tilt LCD is just what we would want for EVF use since you can leave it turned inwards adn not wory about scratchingit.

  • MAFAv8r

    alfon, Save up for the 50-200, its worth it, nearly as sharp as the 12-60. Add in a 1.4 convertor and it gives you nearly 600mm equivalernt

    10. For taking photos of alpine flowers from underneath them

  • roy

    alfons, consider the panasonic leica summilux 25mm f1.4 lens as well. its superb.

  • I often shoot whole weddings just using the panasonic leica summilux 25mm f1.4 lens :-0

  • Chris


    I agree with you. Tilt & swivel is great an all, but I often prefer eye-level shooting because, well, that’s how I find most things I’m interested in shooting.

  • Alfons

    Thanks guys for suggestions, even thou I led this conversation off topic.

    I already have sigma 30mm f1.4. A thad heavy lens for 4/3, but cheaper of the two options for big aperture work.

    I have the two e-500 kit lenses too. I’m still considering between first getting 11-22mm and after that a nice weather proof tele or just getting the more versatile 12-60mm instead, and suffering the loss of 1mm at the wide end :D
    The truth is, I know I still want to go wider than 11mm!

  • Alfons

    Any rumors about new four thirds lenses? Or is Olympus going to trash the whole system so there is no point making new glass?

    I love the focal lenght of 70-200mm (FF) but the Zuiko 35-100mm F2 is just silly big :(
    My old 40-150mm F3.5-4.5 has served me well, but being slow and non-weatherproof it kills the nicest features of the E-3. 35-100mm F2.8 with SWD motor would be much lighter. A F2.8-3.5 aperture range would make it even more compact.

    And they are missing the nice primes too…

  • I.M.Feoyon

    Easy, the come new 4/3 lenses, maybe too next year. info right from Olympus.

  • Mark


    If you need good quality zooms and want the best performance from your E-3 then the Zuiko 12-60mm f/2.8-4.0 SWD and the 50-200mm f/2.8-3.5 SWD combo is hard to beat.

    They wipe the floor with the best Nikon DX or Canon EF-S lenses.

    In response to the rumour.

    If you read the Vision Statement and 5 Year Plan proposed by Olympus Japan on 12 May 2010.

    Then it’s likely the E-3 replacement will be mirrorless.

    “… we will concentrate our investment in technology and product development based on the Micro Four Thirds standard, with a view to achieve a 20% market share …”

    Refer to: http://www.olympus-global.com/en/news/2010a/nr100512visione.html

    Although I do really hope to see a mirrored E-3 replacement soon.

    With at least:

    – An AF system that can compete with thoses in the Nikon D300s or Canon 7D.

    – 1 to 2 stops better high ISO performance than the EPL-1.

    – 14 bit RAW at 6 to 8 fps.

    – 3 inch LCD with 920K res.

    – SD card slot instead of xD.

    And all the other best functions from the E-3 retained.

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