(FT4) New Olympus E-3 and E-30 successor (one single camera?)


Dear readers,
since over one month I am continually receiving rumors about the E-3 and E-30 successor. At the beginning I thought that there would be two new cameras but now I “believe” that the E-30 and the E-3 are probably going to be replaced by one single new FourThirds camera!

I have only few informations:
– The new FourThirds camera is going to be unveiled in March (late March?).
– Do not expect little upgrades over the E-30/E-3…do expect more! The new camera should have some kind of “special” sensor.
– It will not be a mirrorless camera
Keep sending your “rumors” at 43rumors@gmail.com or use the contact form on the right sidebar!

Thanks to all the people who sent me pieces and pieces of informations!

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  • whoknows

    ” The new camera should have some kind of “special” sensor.”

    “It will not be a mirrorless camera”.

    Could not be a 3CCD sensor as it kept mirror. Then, X3? Fujifilm Organic CMOS Sensor?

    • admin

      We really don#t know yet!

  • aaa

    Maybe just backlit sensor from Panasonic (it would be probably dissapointing though).

  • Agent00soul

    Probably Fuji or some brand new sensor from Panasonic.

  • Marty4650

    I think there is ZERO possibility that the E30 and E3 will be “replaced by one single camera.”

    If Olympus did that, then we are back to a huge gap between their entry level DSLRs (E4/20/E520/E620) and their pro model (E3, or successor).

    They would still need a “Super E620” or a “E3 Lite” which is pretty much what the E30 is.

    The will not have a price gap between $500 and $2000 camera bodies…. unless they just want to have E620 users upgrade to Nikon D90s and Canon 50D when they want more camera, and can’t afford an E5.

    • admin

      I understand your arguments Marty! But I remember when we said that the E-p2 was coming and that it would be a E-P1 with EVF. People told me that it would be nonsense for Olympus to announce such a camera. :)

  • napalm

    actually, it makes sense. there is not much difference between the E-3 and the E-30 aside from the weather-sealing. so making a weather-proof E-30 successor will target both markets. this assuming that the price point will be “friendlier”. but if the E-5 is priced for pros then its a different story

    either way, that “huge gap” between the entry levels and their pro/semipro will still be there. a much improved E-520 successor might be the answer to this.

  • Agent00soul

    I think Olympus will scale down their ambitions in regular Fourthirds. Some of the entry level sales will be replaced by m4/3 models and they will leave the high end pro market to Canon and Nikon. So there is hardly need for more than two or at most three models in regular Fourthirds.

  • Jón

    4/3 mount on a Pentax K-7-like body. The E-3 is too big and heavy.

  • Mike

    I have to agree with Jón, the K-7 has right semi-pro size for a DSLR camera. Someone may not agree (especially Olympus E-3 users), but the OM series 35mm SLRs were smaller and totally professional tools though. I still hope for new fast primes from Olympus (normal & wide) ;).
    Cheers 43rumors team and users.

    • admin

      Cheers Mike ;)

  • napalm

    yes a digital OM… hope we’d see that soon!

  • charly-says

    to admin:
    “The new camera should have some kind of “special” sensor.”
    Why do you think so?

    • admin

      Charly….becuase everyone is telling me that. It sounds strange I know!

  • Michael Meissner

    A March announce for the E-3/E-30 replacement? I’ve given up trying to make sense of Olympus marketing. Late February I can see, since PMA is Feb. 21-23, but a March announce misses that window.

    • admin

      Hi Michael. it could be that they announce the camera at PMA and the availabiltiy is March.

  • sam

    I’m a user of E-3 and totally agree with Jón and Mike for k-7 size as suitable Olympus pro body size in future..

  • Mark

    Earlier rumors have hinted at a revised image sensor filter array…

    Considering the E-3 was criticised by one popular D-SLR review site as having a stronger anti-alias filter which resulted in softer images, its likely to be a correction point in future models.

    As for the type of image sensor.

    I doubt that Olympus would drop it’s efforts on improving the Live MOS sensors in favour of adopting a Fuji Organic CMOS or even a Fuji EXR CCD image sensor.

    Considering Live MOS sensors have the best features of both CCD and CMOS sensors.

    BTW, organic materials degrade over time and fade when exposed to UV light.

    The digital micro lenses and photonic color filters used in the Olympus E-3 and later Olympus D-SLR models are made of synthetic materials that are inherently fade resistant so I doubt they will regress to inferior organic materials.

    Refer to: http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/content/Panasonic-Announces-New-MOS-Sensor.htm

    The other thing to remember is the Fuji EXR Sensor is just a CCD that has been tweaked to work in three modes of operation.

    1/ High resolution mode.
    The sensor uses all its pixels to render the finest details of the scene.

    2/ High sensitivity mode.
    It uses pixel coupling technology to produce images with lower noise levels.

    3/ High dynamic range mode.
    Combines two exposures to deal with high contrast scenes

    These are all innovations that can be implemented into a Panasonic Live MOS sensor.

    So there is no benefit in choosing Fuji made sensors.

    My guess would be that if they were going to try a different sensor design it would firstly improve dynamic range.

    This article hints that improvements in dynamic range are most likely:

    Olympus is an innovator in the D-SLR market.

    They have demonstrated this with some class leading features in the E-3, such as:

    – MOS Image Sensors and the TruePic Engine (Why else are Olympus colours so good?)
    – SSWF Image Sensor dust reduction technology.
    – 1.15x magnification optical viewfinder with 100% view
    – Fast, bi-axial AF Sensors.
    – Image Shift Stabilisation.
    – Fast, optimised SWD Zoom Lenses (firmware upgradable).
    – Articulating LCD screen with Live View (and many real time diagnostics).
    – Wireless Flash system.
    – Environmental sealed equipment.
    – In-body Pixel Mapping.

    Expect further innovations.

    • admin

      Very interesting Mark! I should hire you! :) Many Thanks

  • Phil

    And what about a video function!? They can’t leave that only to the Pen models..

  • it actually makes good sense, in the absence of a major breakthrough in sensor technology the 4/3 sensor is close to maxed out. there is not enough between the E-3 and the E-30 now. it is not up to the job of the next generation “Pro Camera” it would make better sense to throw every thing that they have got in way of image quality at the next E-30 drop the art filters and scene modes and put it in a weather sealed plastic body and drop the E-3

  • fudino

    Oly is so slow for an e-3 mk2 etc. Very outdated now, E3 stuck at 10mp, no video and not so user friendly. Ive been waiting for months now and I think by the time they release a new flagship, it`s again will be too late. I really wonder what oly boss doing ? permanent holiday !! Comon man you only have a few dslr`s near pro level and you can`t even bring it on more. Look at ebay full e3`s, owners must be upset not being able to sell the body for 700-800 quid as it`s just way way outdated.
    Hear that olympus, you lost a potential customer, get back from holiday and start sacking some people!!!!

  • v

    well here it is may and there is no new four thirds camera.

    micro yes.

  • c

    come onnnnnnnnnnnnn whre is the bludy E5

  • Chris

    I’m still using an E-330 and getting very nice photos. I recently had an opportunity to use a Nikon D-90 for about a month and frankly, it wasn’t that much better than my now outdated E-330. In some ways, especially interface, I preferred the Olympus. The proof is that long before I had to return the Nikon, I had already got into the habit of leaving it at home and taking out my old reliable Oly instead. My E-330 has a special character and robustness that I didn’t see in the Nikon and frankly, I think this is one of Olympus’s strengths.

    With all of the above in mind, I hope Olympus don’t rush out the next best thing but follow their tried and true method of building really dependable cameras with character. I too am in line for a new body, and I’d like to upgrade to an E-3 successor. Here are some attributes I hope the new camera honours:

    Excellent Dynamic Range – This is more important than high ISO performance for me;
    Excellent colour fidelity – as usual;
    Excellent optical viewfinder – This is the biggest problem with most 4/3s cameras, especially the E-330;
    Reasonably compact dimensions – The E-330 is close to perfect in this respect, though it still seems bulky compared to OM series;
    Reliable components – as usual with Olympus;
    Rugged Construction – a la E-3 or Pentax K-7;
    Market leading image quality at lower and moderate ISO settings;
    Very good ISO performance up to 1600 – I personally don’t care about extreme ISO performance;
    Arrange buttons so that shooting specific controls are on right side and review or edit controls are on left;
    Shooting mode and focus mode should be available as physical switches;
    Excellent B&W options available in-camera.
    There are certainly more, but those are what come to mind.

    It would also be nice to see Olympus release a fast prime lens in conjunction with the new camera. Something falling somewhere between 35 and 60 mm range (70 and 120mm equivalent range). A new high quality FourThirds lens will say as much or more about the Olympus commitment to FourThirds than a new body. Make it feel as solid as the old OM lenses.

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