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Olympus: E-5 successor could be Four Thirds, Micro Four Thirds or hybrid…


Olympus President Haruo Ogawa has been interviewed by Imaging Resource (Click here). When asked about the E-5 successor he said: “We are considering several different ideas for a body that would accept Four Thirds lenses, but would also have on an acceptably compact size. At this moment, we cannot say anything for sure, because there are many possibilities — it could be Micro Four Thirds, or Four Thirds, or somehow a hybrid

So could it be that both systems are about to merge in one single camera? A “hybrid” solution sounds mysterious, wondering how this could look like…



  • SteveO

    I’m wondering if there’s enough of us left hanging in there with 4/3’s lenses to now justify a new small 4/3’s body with E-M5 sensor, IBIS and perhaps even EVF. Much as I’d love this!

    If they’re still pondering which way to go, sounds like whichever camera it is it’s still quite a ways off as well.

    • Mike

      I don’t understand, why would they build a new Four Thirds camera when you guys can just use adapters on an m43 camera?

      • m43 bodies are (for practical purposes) incompatible with the best 43 lenses. While the 43 lenses fit on m43 bodies and can take pictures, the autofocus performance comes up short — as in slow , inconsistent, and unreliable.

        Why? The 43 lenses are designed for PDAF (Phase Detect Auto Focus) bodies, and the new m43 bodies are all CDAF (Contrast Detect Auto Focus) which is a mismatch in practice since the two focusing techniques are radically different.

        PDAF lenses find focus in one point-to-point motion, and their focus motors are designed for a single large motion. By contrast (cough-cough), CDAF lenses hunt for focus by making numerous incremental movements on the way to achieving focus, and their motors are designed for numerous smaller motions on the way to finding focus. So CDAF plays hell on PDAF lenses and motors, and the best 43 lenses (e.g., for sports) suffer and are impractical and ineffective on CDAF bodies.

        • JeremyT

          The thing we really need is a higher end EM5-like M4/3 camera with either on-sensor PDAF (which Nikon does) or a translucent mirror adapter (like Sony does, and perhaps their new arrangement with Olympus makes that a possibility).

          There is a lot of 4/3 glass that is really nice, we just need a body to utilize it. They’re fully electronically and physically compatible, and it seems a waste to not make that full product range continue.

        • ginger

          “m43 bodies are (for practical purposes) incompatible with the best 43 lenses. While the 43 lenses fit on m43 bodies and can take pictures”

          are you saying tha same no?

          • ginger,

            yes and no. Yes, the lenses can take nice pictures, but no, practically speaking, they are NOT compatible. In other words, the pro lenses are expensive and high grade because they have fast apertures, a lot of glass ($$$), high-speed focus motors and design, and are designed for sports et al. (snappy focusing). The problem is… on m43, the fast focusing vanishes… replaced with pokey, inconsistent, and unreliable focusing. In short, the big aperture and high speed go to waste for “money” shots — no high speed focusing, no ‘capture the moment’ shots in sports or elsewhere. So you get great glass for still life, but come up short for everything else. For expensive, fast glass to be slow and useless for its main use case (sports et al.) is what I mean by impractical. In other words, the best (and most expensive) 43 glass (PDAFocus) does not work fully on m43 bodies (CDAFocus).

      • bousozoku

        Show me an adapter that will allow the lenses to work at full speed with zero compromises on a body big enough to be balanced with them and I’ll be happy.

        The new GH3 comes the closest to that, but even with manual focus which I use most of the time, why should I try to work with a tiny body that’s not balanced for bigger lenses and an adapter that isn’t as tough as the lenses?

        I used to try to shoot sports with an OM-1N and it was a slippery proposition. The E-M5 has a grip similar to the OM-4Ti, but I might as well buy a E-5 for $220 more once I outfit the E-M5 with grip and adapter.

  • If so, I’ll be very happy that I didn’t sell my 4/3rds gear, though I haven’t used for 2 years.

    • Duarte Bruno

      Come again? You haven’t used it for 2y but you are happy you didn’t sell it???

  • Everything he said is already known. But I would say that it’s the first time we have something this explicit from an Olympus authority (the President.) I do hope they can come up with something really special like the 5-axis IS, it reminds of nothing but alien technology.

  • amalric

    Admin you already published an Oly patent for a hybrid.

    At the time they said it was too expensive. However technologies keep changing. In the end it will be a matter of cost and price.

  • Michoo

    It might take a while before they release something if they are still at the stage of considering different solutions…(unfortunately for the more impatient group of the clients)….

  • Boooo!

    Okay, please take your time and make it a good camera, but right now, an E-7 is needed.

    • Richard

      Agree, an E-5 with all the new EM-5 tech. EVF or OVF doesn´t matter for me as I have an EM-5 and have got used to the EVF. That would give them more time to solve the PDAF problems with m4/3 and create “one beautiful system”.

  • One camera which can take both FT & mFT lenses and perform optimal AF with both makes much more sense as it stands symbol for the promised one beautiful system.

  • Tropical Yeti

    Just another assurance (among many others during Photokina) for 4/3 users, we will get latest and greatest technology next year. OK, we get it.

    Sending such confident messages actually means they already have working solution. I don’t believe him they don’t know yet what will come out next year – it may be more than one of three proposed solutions will reach the market.

    This is what you should sniff out from your sources admin… Forget about feeding us tousands of links to Amazon and Ebay…

  • Getting real curious about the GX2, Admin.

    Any news about that?

  • Niko2pat

    Osea que a dicho todas las posibilidades, así malo sera que no acierte. Decir eso es como decir nada.

  • Oliver

    E-620 size + weather sealing + fastest AF + 5-axis IS + full HD video + etc…

    • I was thinking more 520 sized (about like GH3) with the larger battery and grip, and all the goodies you mention.

      • alf

        I’m in!

      • Milo


  • solar

    When a company representative states, “we are considering several ideas for a different body”, that means they have nothing or at early planning stages only. There is nothing definitive here unfortunately, only industry rhetoric to provide a non- specific answer to a direct question, and to avoid the admission of inaction.

    I hope something comes soon for the 43s owners but I would not be holding my breath in anticipation.

    • Tropical Yeti

      > “we are considering several ideas for a different
      > body”, that means they have nothing or at early
      > planning stages only

      No no. Their repeated message since Photokina is
      – “Will focus 4/3 lenses”
      – “Is comming (in 2013 my guess)”
      – “Will be smaller (than E-5 I guess)”
      – “Will be different (???)”

      What do we want more from them? In which color new body will come? But they are obviously not ready yet to tell which of the three proposed approaches they have taken…

  • “Maybe, maybe not.”

    Since Oly is clearly running in circles, they are pissing away valuable time. While they are mulling options, the market is moving on, and so are probably those 4/3 users who couldn’t roped into downgrading to m4/3.

    I am a 4/3 user, and at this point I’m taking a serious look at the Pentax K-5 II. My two E-620s won’t last forever and there is no current body for my 12-60. And no, I am not willing to carry an E-5 around.

  • Sounds great – or would have sounded great 3 or 4 years ago. Now I fear it is too little, too late.

    At this point I would rather see some mid-range zooms for m4/3 – something to replace the old 14-54, 12-60 and 50-200. Although I guess there are plenty of the old lenses out there on the used market if they make the right camera for me to use them.

    • Shanti

      Same here,looking to change to K5IIs,as better IQ & low light uses,and as sturdy as E3,E5. If Oly takes another year to do something for 43 users then not many left I think

  • Excellent interview… wish I knew more about their 5 year plan :-]

    • Mr. Reeee

      I bet Oly would like to know their plans, too. :-P

      • Raist3d


  • Anyway is the simple way for Olympus, use E-5 body, E-M5 sensor, 5-axis IS and 14bit RAW.

  • Mr. Reeee

    Oly should make a better 4/3 to M4/3 adaptor.

    I’ve used the Sony A Lens to NEX adaptor and it’s pretty impressive. It ain’t cheap, but the focus is pretty darned fast.

    So, doesn’t Oly do something like that, instead of continuing to string their (soon to be EX?) customers along?

  • I think Mr.Ogwa is not good at speaking English.
    don’t boether word “hybrid”.

    I guess these words are: E-7, E-M5+MMF-4 or E-M6 (hybrid).

    don’t waste such little bit of rumor info for your life!

    most possibility of mine is ” nothing to do”.

  • One must be patient to solve the 4/3 lenses’ issue, if only because of Oly’s financial straits.

    To me the main choice to do is:
    * M4/3 camera can accept 4/3 lenses with mirrored adapter or new PDAF on sensor
    * 4/3 camera cannot accept m4/3 lenses

    At this point few are left with a fully fledged 4/3 system, and it might come to the point if Oly has still the factories to produce SHG glass, Could they make them in China, I wonder?

    So lets assume that the market is v. limited anyway. One also notices that Oly is not introducing massively new lenses for m4/3. Some v. expensive primes are already milking Oly aficionados.

    If the assumption is that the transition is still on, the OM-D Pro is the body that makes more sense. With a mirrored adapter a’ la Sony, allowing user to decide the level of expense in 4/3 lenses.

    It’s probably too late to launch a SLT line with 4/3 distance to flange: Sony is already there, and investment would be substantial to launch a separate SLT line. Who knows, perhaps in better times?

    Don’t forget that despite m4/3 successes Oly is still in the red. Mirrored adapter would also be beneficial to Panny users, so more market for 4/3 lenses.

    Another factor might be cheapening of FF bodies. In a couple of years Oly might not be able to sell 1700 $ bodies anyway. IMHO m4/3 must consolidate at the 1000 $ level or below and leave the rest to FF.

    This is just an ordinary piece of reasoning, not marketing lingo. The only true announcement, is that the future camera will be smaller and compatible. But surely Oly is not big enough to stop the evolution of the camera market.

    So as always, between a rock and a hard place.

  • physica

    I think a 4/3 DSLR body should be fine , someone will need a body with better ergonomic, reliability and control like DSLR , but if the camera could able to use M4/3 lens by changing some parts , then it will be very nice~~

    somewhat like a modular camera? Prism and Reflex lens extractable and insert another module which is for M4/3 lens with CDAF? the M4/3 module are just like a immersed lens into body? lol….

    • Esa Tuunanen

      >somewhat like a modular camera? Prism and Reflex lens extractable and insert another module which is for M4/3 lens with CDAF? the M4/3 module are just like a immersed lens into body?

      That would create more complexity adding size if done with robust construction and costs… and would be pain in the butt to weatherproof.

  • adaptor-or-die

    … a zuiko optic quality [retrograde?] adaptor that allows all MFT glass to mount onto 4:3 bodies, (the reverse concept idea of the NEX adaptor)bring 4:3 users back to the MFT party

    • Mmm… Build a 43 camera with a mode to support m43 lenses. Interesting. Perhaps the mirror moves out of the way and the sensor moves forward for m43 glass, so the 43 user can use HG 43 glass as well as primo m43 glass. It would be the size of 43 cameras (e.g., E-5) but with compatibility for m43.

      It does not sound like the small concept mentioned in the interview, but (given Olympus innovative and creative solutions) could fit the bill.

  • milez

    I think Oly, as reported by admin, is trying to achieve a camera with both PDAF + CDAF in one body… AFocus with PDAF on 43 lens, and AF with CDAF on m43 lens … to achieve the optimum performance of the respective format at its native core. And put them into a small package, probably the size of the E30 or E1.

    If i were them, i’d name it E50, and include EM5’s 16mp sony sensor, 5 axis IS, BUT with their new EVF tech, weather sealed, similar OLED touch screen display as EM5 (maybe higher dpi res)… with the option to remove the hand grip (ala E-P3) to make it smaller and look like E-M5, when using m43 lens.

    Hybrid? you bet…. what would you call it? mini 4/3? H4/3? or just 43rds?

    • Such a (already patented) camera, modular/hybrid, with all its additional prisms and mirrors, would cost today in the range of 2000 $. It is simply too close to the price of a FF camera, can you not see?

      But if you still have such a wad of money you can sit down and show me the cheque, says the Oly rep :)

      Instead if you have a mirrored adapter you split the expense in two. Say 1200 (camera) + 400 (adapter). Many won’t buy the adapter anyway, and more cameras will be sold.

      Other solution is PDAF on sensor but assuming it is Sony it hasn’t been tested with Alpha lenses, so why should it work with 4/3 lenses?

      I think that they key decision is the cost of the camera. As I said there is less and less room for cropped cameras, above 1000-1500 $, with FF coming down in price. Market is moving on.

      • Ross

        Well, it would seem this is a ploy by Canon & Nikon to capture some of the market from going to CSC (seeing it has grown so much). I know it doesn’t give the user a small portable camera, but another attractive option (to some) instead.

        • It’s even worse than that. PK 2012 was revolutionary: by showing small mirrorless FF (RX1?) Sony is clipping the market from above, saying that m4/3 or 4/3 can’t sell above some price cap.
          It was also predicted that C&N could go down to 1500 $ for a FF camera. m4/3 still has legroom below that, but it cannot afford clumsy expensive solutions like those proposed. It must keep a camera under a certain price.
          I am beginning to think that a 4/3 E-x at 1700 $ is a mirage of the past. There comes the difficulty.

          • For three year sell Canon old EOS-5D for same price, not new by this.
            Anyway is the time for Olympus coming by 14bit RAW now, for a give better IQ in shadow part in image.

            • But this is a separate discussion.FF mirrorless is expensive, therefore the clash is in the future.
              My contention is that FF dSLR heading towards 1500 $ (Thom?) set a price cap over Oly asking prices.

              So even their top model should be less than that. No room for a complex modular camera. Ar best a separate mirrored adapter.

              It was always a poor idea to try to compete against FF, and now with its plummeting prices, it’s even worse. No money for high falutin’ projects.

              They could even issue an E-630 with the 16 Mpx sensor and an EVF it that rocks their boat. :)

              • Ulli

                while i wont argue that there is a upper price limit for a large group of mFT users and potential buyers,there is also a group large enough who’s main interest in mFT is the flexibility to setup a compact or larger shooting config, and dont care if its price is close or above an entry 24×36 camera. While a mirrorless 24×36 body can compete in size, it cannot with the lens lineup.So if a professional mFT body series beyond the 1500 usd barrier would happen,and worthy to its name, i dont see problems selling it, despite all the complains here on this forum about people who prefer to pay as less as possible.

                • Ulli, you might be a nice person but you make no commercial sense at all. Long past are the days where 4/3 could command a captive audience.

                  If you compare as a tentative customer in an imaginary shop window the 1700 $ E-5 and a discounted 5d mk II for the same price, which will you choose honestly?

                  I’d get the latter for special tasks, and keep my m4/3 gear for everyday use. Market has changed for good, except for the cranks and the birders :)

                  • i admit 1700usd for a E-5 is too much these days, but i would choose none as they are both too bulky for me. My comment was more about a future replacement for the E-x series in mFT format. compact mirrorless is the future,and not only below the 1000usd barrier.

          • eety7

            Well the Olympus E-5 launched at £1500 in 2010 the D600 is in shops and available today for £1700. I would imagine a high end product aimed solely at the now tiny FT market would come in at a very high price. Certainly in the plus £2000 category assuming they installed the latest tech such as the new sensor and the amazing 5 axis IS. This obviously would only cater for the better off E-5 level user tough luck lower down the range if you don’t want to go mFT .

  • Stravinsky

    Maybe their solution would be some kind of a removable, swappable mount in the body. Once a particular mount is locked, the camera’s processors would compensate for algorithms,etc. I don’t know what I’m talking about.

    • Yes, possibly they would sell five units, one to you. Please show me your bank statement says the Oly rep. :)

  • FatDrunkAndStupid

    I think their “solution” is to continue to opine year after year about all the theoretical solutions that could in theory possibly work if they invested the time and resources in to it, but will never happen because Oly has no interest in investing the time and resources, until eventually the 4/3 owners die out completely and they don’t have to worry about getting asked these sort of questions in interviews anymore.

    Never take what companies say at face value. Look at the fundamentals. Panny abandoned 4/3 completely and Oly has produced just a single body since. 4/3 was a market failure. m4/3 is making Oly money. A technological solution to make 4/3 play nice with m4/3 bodies might someday come to pass, but I doubt Oly is spending any serious time and money on it. Realistically, 4/3 owners have to view the system as dead and not expect much if anything in the way of newer bodies and plan accordingly. If you hold on, perhaps a “solution” will eventually come to pass, but you’d be foolish to expect or count on it.

  • Raist3d

    Why a hybrid solution sounds mysterious? Isn’t that sort of what many where thinking (myself included, and actually admin, I think you included :-) ) from day one? Picture a micro four thirds camera with a 4/3rds lens adapter that when put together, resembles a very solid 4/3rds camera. There goes your hybrid.

  • John

    Sony bought 10 per cent shares in Olympus , Sony will help make and promote a Translucent 4/3rds camera – Olympus has been trying for years to make a 4/3rds to m4/3rds work and even if they could the outrage from 4/3rds owners would prove that idea useless . 4/3rds lens are to big for a small body

  • Photog

    Just take pictures and stop worrying about gear guys :)

  • Alfons

    Sounds like they still don’t have a clue. They are still thinking how to approach the problem. Has the product development even started?

    I have decided that I will change to Fuji early next year. The only thing I’ll be missing is Olympus’ high speed flash sync. It’s too bad that my old lenses are not worth much today.

    • Miroslav

      “Sounds like they still don’t have a clue.”


      Four or five years after they started m4/3 planning. It didn’t take Sony or Nikon that long.

  • Sounds like “we have many options, did not decide which way to go. Will take another two years to develop the body.”
    How many 4/3rds users will there be left at that time?

    I took the right decision to buy a D800E this spring. I would have bought the EM-5 if the compatibility with high end 4/3rds glass would be there (with compatibility I mean: no compromises on usability and focus speed). The wait took me to long and according to this statement another few years waiting ahead for people who spend a fortune on high end four thirds glass.

  • Es

    While the 4/3 lens lineup is absolutely fantastic, lets face it guys – Olympus does NOT want us to use the old zooms.

    1. When you use your old equipment, you’re not buying new products.

    2. When you use excellent killer zooms like the 12-60 and 50-200 you’re not buying 4-5 premium-priced primes.

    So what we will continue hearing from Olympus is empty rhetoric that they are thinking of doing something (in order to make it seem like they are not abandoning their format, just like they already did once), but just like last 4 years of experience shows, it will lead to absolutely nothing.

    They lost money on 4/3 products, so where is the incentive to continue that line? m4/3 is a cash cow, just look at the lens prices! That’s what they will keep working on.

  • I do not believe Oly can have a good business case in developing another 4/3 camera. – And Oly really needs good business case for everything they develop!
    Politically it is difficult for them to admit this – thus the vague statements.
    I would say: Make an intelligent 4/3 to m43 adapter and ditch any plans of a 4/3 camera. I say this because I want Oly Camera to survive!

    • ugo

      Because there is people who works with their gears, not only play. And I have to change everything beacuse theri E-system will no longer live, I’ll think that also m4/3 will not be a good business if I need to spend money in a new system that will survive in the future.
      Ten years can’t be a serious perdiod-life for a high end photo system such E-system.

  • Why the rant? Why the never ending complaining of 4/3 henchmen? Didn’t you realize that the company went through a change of AF, and that everytime this happens your precious lenses are worth nothing?

    How many of you @4/3 noticed that Oly was issuing CDAF compatible lenses? Or didn’t you spit on them and on LiveView, while dilapidating fortunes over obscolecent AF, which was backfocussing and needed calbration?

    LOL in the end you got what you deserved for your arrogance. The system changed entirely and you’re left stranded. You had better bought Leica or MF lenses for that purpose. MF lenses never obsolesce.

    And now you start again, and buy into other systems, without even knowing if their AF will stand the test of time, or is even good as the Oly one, which is excellent?

    Give us a break dearies, get another hobby. Golf might be more suitable to your fortunes :)

    • Anonymoose

      CDAF will “never” be able to track movement well. We’re currently at the limits of what physics allows regarding CDAF lens focusing. In 50 years, with entirely new materials and construction paradigms, things might be different (hence “never”), but not in any near and foreseeable future.

      The future is PDAF and CDAF at the same time.

      Finally, if you hate Olympus users so much, I don’t even want to think how much you hate Canon, Nikon, Sony and Pentax users. You would probably commit genocide on those photographers if you could. Please stay away from presidency in any countries with nuclear missiles, or you will destroy the world one minute after your inauguration.

      • amalric doesn’t have to care about what will be in 10, 15 or 20, or 50 years. If he’s lucky, he’ll be on display in a museum by then. :-P

        • Thank you. You are always so courteous and fill of repartee.

          I might end at Madame Tussaud’s, but I wonder if any museum of photography is ready to accept your worthless gear.

          Can I suggest the Salvation Army? :)

          • “Knotty timber requires sharp wedges” (or an axe).

            You’ve taught me all about courtesy on the Web, baldie! Considering your posting history, you can’t seriously expect any courtesy. :-P

            • The problem Mr. TheEye, is that you don’t have the eye for anything, especially in matters technological.

              Worse you have no humour, but just a little smearing, and you have no vocabulary, conversation or grace, so you are down to tasteless stalking.

              In other words you are a sad s@d, Mr. TheEye. So FO. Go fishing, catch something instead of nothing :)

              But tell your Mama, not me.

              • The best part of you dripped down your momma’s leg.

                By the way, you fight like a cow! :-P

  • Anonymous

    I’ve just checked out Ebay, it seems everyone has now successfully sold their E-5’s and that all users are now using used bodies, as there are only two new ones available, one in France the other in Hong Kong. Seems I’ve missed out on getting one, ah well my E-1 will soldier on while the 620 stays in it’s box.

    • LOL Full Frame has killed 4/3, that’s the beginning and the end of it. Oly was clever enough to listen to the weatherman and save it’s skin in time. And I read the sign too, and transitioned in time. Therefore I am an Oly lover while you are just a fool :)

      They tell me that there is an ebayer who converts the 4/3 zuikos in elegant ashtrays for a pittance.

      Did you ever try him, moose?

  • JeanA

    Olympus: E-5 successor could be Four Thirds, Micro Four Thirds or hybrid

    Anything other than a mFT that can properly utilize the FT lenses would be idiotic.The market for FT is tiny unless they made some super expensive FT model to make it worthwhile.This is only to cater for a market that probably already owns any lens they want.There is no sense in thinking there will be a profitable market for very expensive, large , heavy SHG lenses in mFT. Size and wEight are the major attraction of mFT.

    If you are prepared to carry all that weight and pay those prices { Olympus FT lenses cost a fortune in Europe }. Then most would simply go to FF something like the D800. I love the small and compact nature of mFT. My Panasonic 7-14 may be only say 95% as good as the FT 7-14 but here it is half the price and a fraction of the weight

  • Camaman

    I really give Olympus credit for easing minds of their 43 lens users, but lets face it… No new 43 lenses in years…
    Other makers just dump you and move on to new mount without much second thought.
    It is not like the old lenses dont work adapted to m43 it is just that they are not so fast.
    In a way it is the same as Canon mooving from FD to EF mount. Hey it still works. Easier transition.

    I wont be surprised if they make the new pro body m43. It probably makes more sense economicaly. And the will probably release some strange one of pdaf adapter for that camera for easier transition to upcoming m43 lenses the will surely make.

    Sure f2 lenses will always be big, but so what they will be balanced better on pro OMD bodies or what ever.
    SLR mirror is dead and they know it. They just dont know how to tell their pro users and not offend them.
    My 2c. :-)

    • David

      This is an odd statement.
      Nikon F mount has existed since 1959
      Canon switched to EF, but back in 1987
      Pentax K mount since 1975
      Minolta switched in 1985, and Sony has never switched

      Olympus switched in 2003, with no continuing support, to the 4/3 standard. Then they switched again a few years later to m4/3. You can say they are supporting their 4/3 users, but are they really? No new camera in over 2 years (and the last consumer model was over 3 years ago, enthusiast model 4 years ago).

      Olympus has been telling us for years that they will release a camera that supports both 4/3 and m4/3 lenses, but thus far, no joy. Now they say that the body could be anything because there are so many possibilities? This is the opposite of comforting.

  • st3v4nt

    Just give us the better AF adapter please….it should solve most our 4/3 lens problem.

    • Roderik

      You gotta give it to Olympus, who else could make the E-420, great sense of humour, happy 420 :-)

  • David

    “At this moment, we cannot say anything for sure, because there are many possibilities ”

    Wow, so, there has been no end product development. Basically, a replacement is at least 2 years off. How come Sony, Pentax, and Nikon can figure this out and Olympus can’t?

    • eety7

      The guy who is listed as the Olympus slr manager has had a great holiday lol time to step up or step off. And what about the FT 100mm macro

      • Es

        Sigma already has a 105mm macro for FT if you want one, not like that sold a ton.

        • Boooo!

          I have the Sigma 105. It’s not a very good lens. It’s fun to use because it has fully manual focus and gives more macro working distance, but optically, the lens is… ugh.

  • Riley

    Olympus: E-5 successor could be Four Thirds, Micro Four Thirds or hybrid…
    or anything else they can think of
    this is ludicrous

    • It’s just a slight alteration of Terada’s standard phrase, “Maybe, maybe not.” I think it might be better if the Oly talking heads didn’t say anything. For the past three, almost four years, they have been feeding 4/3 users’ hope. How often can they let people down and expect them to still show patience?

      • TerryH

        He sounds like the jock footballer kenny dalglish famous non commital catchphrase “mibbies I mibbies naw ” no spell check for the jock talk

  • Rob

    A hybrid might be something like the NEX-6, allowing the strengths of both contrast detect and phase detect. From DPR:

    “The NEX-6, like the NEX-5R, uses a modified sensor with pixels devoted to performing phase-detection to provide a hybrid autofocus system. The phase-detection pixels are used to determine depth information about the focus target, which means the camera has to perform less hunting. Sony is the fourth manufacturer (following Fujifilm, Nikon and Canon) to go down this route, with the potential of faster focus, improved continuous focus performance and better autofocus in movie shooting.”

    hybrid AF has the potential (when combined with clever firmware) to provide decent AF tracking (the biggest weakness of contrast detect AF) while retaining the flexibility of live view.

    • The problem with hybrid AF is that PDAF on sensor might be rather imprecise, and work only as an adjunct to CDAF. It would minimise the adjustments, but would not provide the precise distance needed by 4/3 lenses. In dSLR that is given by specialised sensors which have a larger RF base,

      THERE IS NO EVIDENCE that in a sensor relatively close pixels can provide the same performance.

      So we are back to square one. The motors of 4/3 lenses are not suitable for hybrid AF. Perhaps CDAF compatible 4/3 lenses might marginally improve, but that’s it.

      I hope I am proven wrong, but until that I’ll treat the starry eyes for what they are: wishful thinking and OBFUSCATION.

      I doubt that Oly engineers were so silly not to try hybrid AF systems. They have been around (even for P&S) for a time. It’s only that you didn’t notice that they gave mediocre results with legacy lenses.

  • ugo

    I do not want a small body for my 4/3 lenses. I want a Big camera, I have to work with heavy lens. I have to handle it well and must be well balanced in my hand. I need to use full speed of SWD lenses and, in any case, the best performance of my AF 4/3 lenses.
    I, and many others, need a new pro-level camera. If it’ll be Hybrid or somewhat I don’t care. I need to use my pro lenses as well as now.

    • Es

      Why on earth would anybody pay for a 4/3 camera that is the same price and size as a full frame, but has a sensor area 1/4 the size?

      • That is exacly my conclusion: it’s a metter of price. With FF plummeting there is no room for a 1700 $ 4/3.

        But for the same reason no room for a hybrid 1700 $ camera. Now consider that Sony sells a mirrored adapter around 500 $.

        Possibly Oly did some market research and saw that there is a v. little market at those camera prices.

        Adapter is your best bet. Now they could even get one from Sony :)

  • ES

    In principle it is entirely possible to make a “hybrid” m4/3 + 4/3 body. Basically it would be a m4/3 body with a proprietary m4/3 to 4/3 adapter that contains phase-detect AF hardware working through a fixed beamsplitter instead of a moving reflex mirror. The body would of course lack a reflex optical viewfinder.

    The adapter and body also need proprietary contacts to work together, but the system would be fully 4/3 compatible with the adapter, and remain fully m4/3 compatible once the adapter is removed.

  • What a shame… It feels like a real let down from Olympus. I made the switch to Nikon last year because of the lack of interest Olympus showing to compete… Its a shame, I am stuck with 3 Olympus bodies and about 10 lenses from the SHG and HG lineup. I have tried selling a few times, but it seems the reality is no one wants to buy into a 4/3 system… If anyone interested, I can ship world wide. I do not have the original boxes etc anymore.. But will pack up properly, etc…

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