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Olympus E-M5 earns Gold Award by Whatdigitalcamera (new 12-50mm firmware update)


I am learning dutch and I casually found that E-M5 video on youtube. Didn’t know that Olympus invited a fake Angelina Jolie for the E-M5 press release event. You can see her at the end of the video :)

Phil Hall from Whatdigitalcamera (Click here) reviewed the new Olympus E-M5. The camera earns a Gold Award. They like almost everything of the E-M5: “The AF is a noticeable improvement over the PEN series, while the new image stabilisation system works a treat.” and “The OM-D E-M5 performs very well at the lower end of the ISO range, delivering clean and detailed images. Increasing the resolution over the E-P3 could lead some to assume that with more photosites taking up the same sensor area, image noise could be more pronounced, but the OM-D performs very well.

Their only critic is that “it’s a shame to see no ISO 100 on offer”.

More news: Finally you can preorder the E-M5 at Amazon Germany (Click here) for the normal non cheater price :) There is a new firmware update for the 12-50mm kit lens (Source: Olympus Japan). It improves the IS in macro mode and adds zoom support when used on Panasonic cameras. (Click here) posted some info about the Epson EVF used by the E-M5.

USA: Amazon, Adorama and B&H.
Europe: Jessops, Amazon UK and Amazon Germany.
Asia: Amazon Japan and Digitalrev.

USA: E-M5 on position 7/12/14/15 (Click here)
UK: Silver E-M5 on position 20 (Click here).
Germany: The E-M5 is on position 6 and 8 (Click here).
France: not available (Click here to see rankings anyway).
Japan: E-M5 on position 4/11/14 (Click here).

  • MP Burke

    It is ironic that they complain of a lack of 100 ISO setting, given that a week or two ago some people were complaining that the sensitivity at the ISO 200 setting on the EM-5 is closer to 120 ISO.

    • Napilopez

      I’m really happy they said continous autofocus actually works:

      “Switch to Continuous AF, and compared to the E-P3, there’s a noticeable jump in performance – the AF reacts quicker to changes in the scene, while the subject tracking is much more successful than on the E-P3 and it has to be one of, if not the best AF system in a Compact System Camera.”

      While best C-AF system for a compact system camera generally doesn’t say too much(did they compare to the Nikon 1 series?), it seems to at least be useable in this case, and from other impressions or videos I’ve seen too. I don’t know why Robin Wong had so much trouble with it.

      • rogerml


    • Also, the base sensitivity of this sensor is 200 (as are the Sony sensors found in Nikon cameras). To get ISO 100, you would just “pull” the ISO200 shot down, hence why it’s called “low” ISO extension on the Nikons. You could easily do it by shooting RAW and then adjusting exposure afterwards to achieve the same thing. Of course, this means decreased dynamic range, and that’s why Oly ditched the ISO100 setting starting with the E-PL1.

      Now, as for “overstating” ISOs, as I understand it, it’s just different ways of measuring ISO, and Canon, Nikon, and Sony all “overstate” their ISOs too, according to DXO et al. How is it that only Olympus gets slagged for it?

      • Raist3d

        The base seems 120/100 probably. The pull you talk about is done the other way- not down but up- to every ISO starting at ISO 200. It’s what happened when the E-30 got introduced all the way to the latest Pen, and the early numbers suggest that this is what also is going on with the EM5 (more evidence too it’s probably a GX1 sensor tweak).

        The ISO per se is not over stated in the sense that you still get the expected shutter speed and bright ness. What you gain is better highlight retention, less shadows. It’s what under exposing by one stop ISO 100 and then amplifying it by math one stop up gives you – “ISO 200” with better highlights.

        The reason I know it’s not the pull down you mention – well I don’t know 100% on the EM5 yet but seems like it given early results- but with the E-30 all the way to the Pen 3, is because shooting in manual exposure at ISO 100 (when you can in the models you can select it as such) and converting it in dcraw gives you identical histograms/image exposure.

    • Raist3d

      It’s not ironic. If Olympus made the true sensitivity available then we would have the setting. As it is, you get an ISO 120 shifted up. Preserve more highlight at the shadows expense. Fortunately with this new sensor this isn’t as bad as say as the PEn/E-5/E-620.

  • If I can get budget for this, I will pre-order this week as well. :)

  • Hardly surprising. Although I’m rather a Panasonic fanboy than an Olympus one, should admit that it’s a really great camera.

  • Yun

    The more I read about this EM5 , the more tempting I want to get it for my 45mm F1.8 .
    Wait , Yun , your next right camera will be the very highend camera from Pana .
    Have to nail this in my mind !

  • I can’t be sure, but I don’t think it’s the same sensor as the GX1/G3 isn’t the difference too much to be just based on the processing? If not, I think that the difference between the 12MP used in the Panny’s line and Oly’s line would be wider as well.

    • AG

      A very good point.

  • That’s no Angelina Jolie double. Angelina loves Olympus, because of that she was there ;-)

    • She’s gorgeous, isn’t it? lol.

      • If she would know me, she would Brad give a kick in his a… ;-)

    • bilgy_no1

      No! Angie (that’s what I call her) was over in Amsterdam to visit me. I told her I had to go over to this boring camera presentation and she tagged along. All the tech nerds from the international press were drooling, but she agreed to pose nonetheless. She’s such a darling!

      Oh, I also have an E-M5 at home since the presentation, but haven’t had any time to shoot with it yet.

  • Kleijn

    Iso 200 is only difficult when to blur waterfall or somthing
    Nd filters

  • Vincent Smink

    Leuke video en verrassend om eens een Nederlands post te zien! Ga vooral door met je goede en informatieve blog! En succes met je Nederlandse les!

  • Mar

    Admin, you should mention that the video was filmed using E-M5 and I must say it looks very nice @1080p.

    • admin

      Oh didn’t know that :)

  • Charlie

    Can’t understand a word that guy was saying,

    And who gave that last model a fat upper lip? Shouldn’t hit women. :x

  • FT1 – probably fake rumor

    Angelina Jolie for a few seconds more…

  • metalaryeh

    Anyone have any thoughts about an OM-D + FL50R combo?
    Is the flash too big?

  • compositor20

    by the way lesnumeriques has posted their comparison images of OM-D and it has very sharp video compared with NEX and Panasonic G3 and its IBIS works fantastic in the barbie shot

  • Phil Hall seemed so very highly taken with new image stabiliser he gave it all of 4 lines with the enthusiasm of some one who had just lost $5 and then marked performance down to only 18. He put the value at 17 and where lives that’s over priced compared to the US.
    Having said that another good review for the E-M5

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