Why the EM1II will be worth every penny
Although us Micro Four Third isers we will have to wait a few months before we get our hands on the just announced Olympus OM-D EM1II a quick look at Olympus’s press release reveals what a power house the new camera promises to be.
I’ve shown the main differences / improvements over the EM1 and the EM5Ii as well for that matter and they are significant.
Olympus has increased resolution over the EM1 / EM5 by introducing a 20mp sensor.
Here’s where it get intresting. Olympus has stated that the new sensor when combined by the new TruePic VIII processor will produce “dramtically improved image quality at high ISO” as well as an improved dynamic range performance, this with increased resolution promises much.
The new sensor will boast 121 cross-type AF points an increase of the 81 found on the EM1 and a significant upgrade.
The new 20.4 megapixel Live MOS sensor will provide a read speed three times faster than that of the EM1, that’s impressive.
The new sensor and processor means frame rate leaps from 10fps to 15fps
The new EM1II will also allow users to adopt the “AF target pad” feature whereby you can use you finger to select the AF point on the rear screen whilst looking through the viewfinder.
The new EM1II will shoot at6 18fps in RAW in autofocus or 60fps (yes 60) at Full RAW if autofocus is not used, this is a sports and wildlife shooters delight
The AF performance is aided by a quad core processors which is dedicated specifically to autofocus.
Unlike many rumours the EVF has remained the same ie a 2.36k resolution and 1.48 magnification BUT runs at 120fps with a reaction to of 6millisec’s so it will offer a crisper more natural view.
The shutter mechanism will be rated to 200,000 shots which is “pro” standard.
Improved 5-Axis Image Stabilisation
The new EM1II promises up to 6.5 (yes 6.5) stops of stabilisation when certain “Pro” lenses (which have image stablisation) are used on the lens, so lenses like the 300mm F4 Pro and the new 12-100mm F4 Pro will work a dream on the EM1II.
Improved High Res Function
The new TruePic VIII Image Processor will effectively suppress blur due to subject movement, making it possible to utilize High Res Shot Mode in a wide variety of shooting conditions, such as gently-blowing grass, tree leaves, or ocean waves.
NB: I suspect true hand-held high res shooting will become available via a firmware update in the future.
Improved Battery life
The new 1720mAh battery promises 37% improved battery life.
Dual SD Slots
The new EM1II will boast 2 SD slots a useful update,
New “low” ISO 64 setting.
The new EM1II will allow of a new ISO64 setting something which can in some circumstance be very useful
The EM1II gains 4K video a first for an Olympus OM-D model. The 4K can be shot in the wider aspect ratio ‘DCI’ Cinema 4K at up to 236mbps.
The EM1II will have a re-shaped grip that will improve handling when paired with the larger Pro telephoto lenses
Even more rugged
The new EM1II will be even more rugged and robust than the EM1the new camera will dustproof, splashproof and freezeproof (down to 14°F / -10°C)
Summary / First Impression.
One word, impressive
And there you have it. You throw all the above together and you are left with what appears to be a truly “Pro” focussed camera, one more than able to hold its own against its bigger APS-C equipped rivals.
If the EM1II delivers on the promised improved image quality the previous superiority of APS-C DSLR’s vanishes.
Pair the new EM1II with the growing “Pro” lenses or some of the high quality Leica micro four third primes or gems like the Zuiko 17mm f1.8 or 75mm f1.8 and you’ll have a sublime package.
The forth coming EM1II looks like it will take the micro four third system to a whole new level and I for one will be the first to stick an order in, I am that convinced it will be a winner.
Mark Baynham (September 2016)