OMD E-M1X Previews, reviews, and official announcement

bikerhiker

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The E-M5 Mark III and the PEN-F Mark II. Include some techs from the E-M1ii, but add like
1, PDAF focusing
2, Handheld hi-res
3, Live ND
4, Same 20MP sensor as E-M1ii

I think most of us can agree that these upgrades can keep the Olympus ethos going. The D5 and Sony A9 market is very small and I would be surprised if Olympus could sell the 1X anymore than 20 to 50k units for its entire lifetime. It is true that the Nikon D5 and A9 are what lures people into buying lower end products, because you have a very high goal post people can strive for. Except, the goal post E-M1x is setup now isn't very high. The sensor is the same as the E-M1ii, so you can get a used E-M1ii and call it done. The handheld hi-res has artifacts and the one in the E-M1ii is pretty damn good already; albeit you need a tripod. But shooting hi-res should be on the tripod. That's the point. Unfortunately, that goal post had already been achieved long ago by many people who had owned the E-M1ii and sold it for another platform and I can bet they aren't going to buy the E-M1X and switch back just because it has machine learning.
 
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damianmkv

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Now's your chance Damian! Haha.

Owning and having shot with the D500 for over a year now at a variety of race tracks and events, I see no reason to make the switch to this camera. And the nice thing is, I don't need to dive in to a menu to tell the camera that I'm shooting motorsports. I simply use the C-AF mode, which I set via a physical control on the camera body, and it works.
Not sure Olympus would lend their camera to the likes of me :hiding:
 

ddekadt

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At least Jared Polin was not drinking his own Kool Aid when he was doing the review of the camera. At least not like the other reviewers and influencers who, to me, are obviously kissing Olympus' boots so that they could continue getting passes to be flown to other future press events. It's better to keep your job, make some money and pay some bills and not ruffle a lot feathers or burn any major bridges. Sometimes, truth is a B****H.
Yes, because Jared Polin doesn't get flown to press events by other camera companies ;).

Honestly you're just making the point for me - all these internet reviewers and "influencers" are full of it. An honest reviewer would tell us all to stop lusting after new cameras and go out and shoot.

But as a larger point, the software tech in this camera is going to matter. Computational photography is the future (everyone admits that when they write screeds predicting how smartphones will kill m43), and Olympus is basically the only major camera company doing it. And machine learning AF seems similar. As usual, Oly makes the first move into the future, as usual, everyone complains.

But really, you'd think from this thread that overnight Olympus forced new firmware on us to invalidate our current cameras. Go out and take photos. M43 remains a brilliantly capable system, and if Oly closes down one day, deal with that then.
 

bikerhiker

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Yes, because Jared Polin doesn't get flown to press events by other camera companies ;).

Honestly you're just making the point for me - all these internet reviewers and "influencers" are full of it. An honest reviewer would tell us all to stop lusting after new cameras and go out and shoot.

But as a larger point, the software tefh in this camera is going to matter. Computational photography is the future (everyone admits that when they write screeds predicting how smartphones will kill m43), and Olympus is basically the only major camera company doing it. And machine learning AF seems similar. As usual, Oly makes the first move into the future, as usual, everyone complains.

But really, you'd think from this thread that overnight Olympus forced new firmware on us to invalidate our current cameras. Go out and take photos. M43 remains a brilliantly capable system, and if Oly closes down on day, deal with that then.
Yeap, I think we are on the same page. I still use and like the m/43 because for all intended purposes, it still can deliver great images as long as you understand its limitations and can work around those limitations. I work around them by using filters (ND grads old school style) and can still keep up with the full framers in most ISOs. BUT, I carry a much smaller camera kit, a smaller less beefier tripod. From early on till the introduction of the E-M5ii, Olympus was very innovative as well as Sony. Then later on, Olympus lost the plot, because I think they continue to think they can still be innovative by competing against sensor sizes 4 times as large and 2 stops better dynamic range and noise on an equal footing. They lost the plot. Good business sense is to always NOT compete head to head against your competition, but offer something your competition does not have like handheld hi-res on a body like the E-M5III (weather sealed, freeze proof) and if you can even make it to track the stars, I can see a lot of opportunities that people will say; I don't really need a D850 or the EOS 5DSR to get hi-res and print larger prints as long as those people have reasonable expectations. That is us, because we know the limitations of the M43, but we own it because the strengths outweigh the weakness. Now, they're just copying exactly what the big boys are doing with a smaller sensor and that's why you see all the disappointment.
 

Turbofrog

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It's not the high ISO that's the problem, I don't think anyone really expects any significant improvement from m43 in that department at this point; it's the AF assessment that was brutal in that review. For a camera that's billed as a competitor to the 1DXii/D5/A9 and priced accordingly, having DPReview say that they were disappointed in the performance just shooting their family members and saying that the AF accuracy is not great is absolute terrible.
Just snipping my comment in the other post, since this is the more active place for discussion.

I would take the off-the-cuff assessments of the CameraStore guys with a grain of salt. They are pretty much the definition of subjective touchy-feely reviewers, and they don't seem to have any consistent methodology that they use.

I would contrast it with the test data from the reliable, thorough reviewers over at Mirrorlesscomparison. They're up there with the most complete camera reviews and comparisons on the internet (my opinion, of course).

Olympus OM-D E-M1X vs E-M1 II – The 10 Main Differences

They suggest that there's been a considerable improvement in autofocus for Birds in Flight, which we can all recognize is a pretty demanding subject:
  • E-M1 II keeper rate: 50% (sharp shots only), 75% (including slightly soft images)
  • X-T2 and A6300/A6500: 75-85% (no detailed breakdown)
  • X-T3 keeper rate: 62% (sharp shots only), 88% (including slightly soft results)
  • E-M1X keeper rate: 74% (sharp shots only), 91% (including slightly soft images)
  • A7 III keeper rate: 77% (sharp shots only), 96% (including slightly soft images)
  • D500 keeper rate: 80% (sharp shots only), 95% (including slightly soft images)
  • A9 keeper rate: 80% (sharp shots only), 95% (including slightly soft images)
The Best Mirrorless Cameras for Wildlife and Bird Photography – 2018 Round-up

Fujifilm X-T3 vs Sony A7 III – Five key points analysed

So it doesn't leapfrog ahead of the pack, but it is now firmly up there with the best of the best. Better than X-T3, functionally the same keeper rate as A7 III but double the FPS, and not quite as good as D500 (but double the FPS).

The only competitor that outclasses it in keeper rate and matches or beats it in FPS is the Sony A9. Which has other advantages, of course, but costs 50% more. And the E-M1X also has other advantages compared to the A9, so there's that.

Again, this is only one test, but as reviewers they are much more competent, methodical, and objective than the overwhelming majority of "hot takes" out there on the internet. It's also a real world test in a challenging and dynamic environment, so should be far more indicative of high-level use than a swerving bicycle, a jogger, or cars passing leisurely at the side of the road...
 

ddekadt

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Yeap, I think we are on the same page. I still use and like the m/43 because for all intended purposes, it still can deliver great images as long as you understand its limitations and can work around those limitations. I work around them by using filters (ND grads old school style) and can still keep up with the full framers in most ISOs. BUT, I carry a much smaller camera kit, a smaller less beefier tripod. From early on till the introduction of the E-M5ii, Olympus was very innovative as well as Sony. Then later on, Olympus lost the plot, because I think they continue to think they can still be innovative by competing against sensor sizes 4 times as large and 2 stops better dynamic range and noise on an equal footing. They lost the plot. Good business sense is to always NOT compete head to head against your competition, but offer something your competition does not have like handheld hi-res on a body like the E-M5III (weather sealed, freeze proof) and if you can even make it to track the stars, I can see a lot of opportunities that people will say; I don't really need a D850 or the EOS 5DSR to get hi-res and print larger prints as long as those people have reasonable expectations. That is us, because we know the limitations of the M43, but we own it because the strengths outweigh the weakness. Now, they're just copying exactly what the big boys are doing with a smaller sensor and that's why you see all the disappointment.
Correct. But just to make one point (that I'm sure you agree with) clearly: M43 isn't the only system with "limitations" and "weaknesses." All camera systems are a compromise. The $3500 price tag of an A7Riii and the $4500 price tag of a Sony A9 are weaknesses. The (typically) massive size of FF files is a weakness. Etc. etc. etc. Worth remembering that every company and every system has strengths and weaknesses. It's all a compromise.

Edit: One other thing. I don't think Olympus "lost the plot." I think they see computational photography as the future. Once we get really really good at computational photography (and we're getting closer every day, Pixel 3!), sensor size is suddenly going to be just one more parameter in the great game of "can I get 10 instagram likes". So no, I think Olympus has made a bet here: why invest in an entirely new system with a new sensor and all that implies, if computational advances are the future? And, actually, M43 is uniquely placed in that regard because our files are actually manageable in terms of size.
 

Wisertime

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Another one for those interested...came up on my recommended list. Shoots cars for the enthusiasts. Haven't finished watching...no trains that I'm aware of. o_O

 

alex66

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Fear not. I just checked and the amazing pictures on the mu-43.com homepage are, even today, still amazing and the majority weren't shot with the flagship models or lenses.
There are some good photographs in the various photo threads also.
 

rogazilla

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I like their more approach in comparing cameras and camera reviews in general. The side by side video showing caf in video next to Em1.ii is very telling and show how much they have improved the AF system in that regard.
 

Turbofrog

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IMO, The only thing wrong with the E-M1 X is the price.
Honestly, that's a reasonable take.

If they could sell it for $2000, I think people would be pretty agog.

Regardless, even at $3000 it's certainly the most serious body available on the market near its price point. In fact, you can probably say it's the most thoroughly engineered mirrorless body ever made without even stepping on anyone's toes...

For fun, here is a dude on YouTube immersing the camera in water and then shooting with it. Just skip to 6:55...


And at 6:00 you can see the punishing testing that Olympus subjects the body to. Makes the Imaging Resource testing (which the A7r III failed, remember) look like a walk in the park.

 

tkbslc

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Just snipping my comment in the other post, since this is the more active place for discussion.

I would take the off-the-cuff assessments of the CameraStore guys with a grain of salt. They are pretty much the definition of subjective touchy-feely reviewers, and they don't seem to have any consistent methodology that they use.

I would contrast it with the test data from the reliable, thorough reviewers over at Mirrorlesscomparison. They're up there with the most complete camera reviews and comparisons on the internet (my opinion, of course).

Olympus OM-D E-M1X vs E-M1 II – The 10 Main Differences

.
I liked how they went through the specific AF modes chosen. They mentioned they got better results with one AF point spread vs another, meaning the other complaints could just be a user training issue. The quick turnaround time on being the first vlogger to hit youtube likely means that the reviewers don't learn the camera well enough, especially if they weren't already E-M1 users.

Also, did anyone scroll down and see the TEN SECOND HANDHELD sharp night shots? 10 seconds!!!! Light trail shot with no tripod?

If you never need a tripod, then suddenly a 2 pound camera becomes the lightest m4/3 setup for serious work. An EPL9 and a tripod weighs more than a E-M1X alone.
 

ijm5012

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  • E-M1 II keeper rate: 50% (sharp shots only), 75% (including slightly soft images)
  • X-T2 and A6300/A6500: 75-85% (no detailed breakdown)
  • X-T3 keeper rate: 62% (sharp shots only), 88% (including slightly soft results)
  • E-M1X keeper rate: 74% (sharp shots only), 91% (including slightly soft images)
  • A7 III keeper rate: 77% (sharp shots only), 96% (including slightly soft images)
  • D500 keeper rate: 80% (sharp shots only), 95% (including slightly soft images)
  • A9 keeper rate: 80% (sharp shots only), 95% (including slightly soft images)
This is what I said earlier. The E-M1 X's AF is basically "just as good" as the competition now, 3 years after the fact. The a6500 and D500 are cameras that are 3 years old, with costs less than half that of the E-M1X. The A9 is coming up on being 2 years old, and while more expensive, still has better features (1/160 silent shutter read-out, blackout-free shooting @ 20fps, vs. only in ProCap on the E-M1 X).

Olympus has seemingly finally caught up to the competition, but has done it with a larger, heavier, more expensive camera.

Also, I find it hard to believe that the X-T3's C-AF performance is worse than the X-T2's, since seemingly every other reviewer stated the improvement in C-AF performance with the X-T3.

IMO, The only thing wrong with the E-M1 X is the price.
Agree. Had Olympus launched this camera at $2k, I don't think there would be nearly the reaction that there has been.
 

whumber

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I would contrast it with the test data from the reliable, thorough reviewers over at Mirrorlesscomparison. They're up there with the most complete camera reviews and comparisons on the internet (my opinion, of course).
Those results are far more promising and at least could start to explain why Olympus thinks they have something special. I'd like to see a comparison against another camera like the A9 or D500 taken in the same conditions but I'll take it.

Honestly, that's a reasonable take.

If they could sell it for $2000, I think people would be pretty agog.
I very strongly suspect Olympus is going to run into the same thing that Panasonic did with the 200mm f/2.8. The PL 200 is a great lens but the sales numbers were terrible at $3K, you can get brand new copies of the lens for around $2K now with the TC and I suspect the street price of the E-M1X will drop down to at least that level in pretty short order, probably even a bit lower.
 

whumber

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Also, I find it hard to believe that the X-T3's C-AF performance is worse than the X-T2's, since seemingly every other reviewer stated the improvement in C-AF performance with the X-T3.
I think it's likely that they only reported the total acceptable images rather than just the critically sharp images like the other cameras. The X-T2 was very good, but I did not find it to be any better than the E-M1ii in C-AF. The X-T3, on the other hand, has a clear step up on the E-M1ii.
 

Machi

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But as a larger point, the software tech in this camera is going to matter. Computational photography is the future (everyone admits that when they write screeds predicting how smartphones will kill m43), and Olympus is basically the only major camera company doing it. And machine learning AF seems similar. As usual, Oly makes the first move into the future, as usual, everyone complains.
This simply isn't true. Actually computational photography is maybe the only thing which everyone likes about this new camera. Also Olympus isn't the only one company which is doing it.
Pentax had handheld hires one year ago. And I read that some more expensive Canons even have automatic in-camera stacking with RAW output. Olympus is "only" the best of them in this area and it needs to be.
Problem is that they did for-sport-shooting oriented camera with technologies which sport photographers don't need and they omitted technologies which they actually need (better EVF, better sensor, fast lenses).
But if they incorporate those technologies to general purpose camera (E-M1III, E-M5III, PEN-FII), that would be a different story as no one thinks about them as specialized equipment.
I think that if there is a niche for Olympus then it's a travel photography. Small, rugged, capable camera is what you need that's what they do best.
Olympus needs to show their cameras as ideal travel companion to every place on Earth.
Next Olympus advertisement should have photos from Antarctica, Amazonian rain forest, Sahara or Mount Everest (where every kg matters).
 
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