Olympus OM-D E-M5
Stunning photos; fantastic image stabilisation; weather resistant
Small, squishy buttons; potentially daunting menu
$1199 (body only)
Olympus helped create the CSC category when it partnered with Panasonic to come up with the Micro Four-Thirds standard back in 2008. Its latest offering is by far its best, combining state-of-the-art technology and some classic retro design.
With a stunning foldout 3in touchscreen LCD that lets you choose the precise point of focus for your photos, as well as a crystal-clear electronic viewfinder, the OM-D makes framing your shot almost too easy.
Although the wide collection of buttons and dials may be a little daunting for the novice photographer, the ability to view each setting change on the camera’s screen will help overcome any unfamiliarity with the manual setting mode.
The inclusion of multiple dials for controlling different settings when shooting manual will be welcome for any photographer who understands how to get the most out of their camera.
Olympus has given the OM-D a five-axis image stabilisation, which is easily the best of any camera tested. The extra stabilisation allows photographers to use longer shutter speeds without the need of a tripod, which helps make handheld night shooting a much less blurry proposition.
Special art filters offer an artistic quality to photos although, as most professional photographers know, it’s better to shoot in RAW and add effects later. Fortunately, bundled software lets you do just this, although it doesn’t work if you shoot exclusively in JPEG.
The biggest frustration with the OM-D isn’t so much the large number of buttons on the camera, but the fact that some of them are tiny and awkward to press. Most notable of these is the playback button, which is a tiny, slightly spongy button on the back, which feels a bit awkward to press.
Macworld Australia’s buying advice.
A superb camera that’s supported by a wide range of lenses and accessories, the OM-D is the perfect CSC for DSLR users looking for a lightweight companion camera.