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Olympus recasts the OM-D E-M10 Mark III in effort to reach smartphone photographers

Create: 09/09/2017 - 09:18
Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Can record 4K and high-speed 120fps video
  • 16.1-MP Live MOS sensor
  • Has both an electronic viewfinder and a Live View LCD monitor

It's a fact that occasional photographers have abandoned point and shoot cameras in favor of their smartphones.

In response, camera makers are trying to figure out how to appeal to those in the group who might want to step up to something that offers better flexibility and expandability.

That brings us to the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III, the company's latest mirrorless digital camera.

With the previous model marketed to amateurs, as well as experienced enthusiasts, Olympus is taking a new approach with the Mark III model in trying to appeal to that group that has abandoned the point and shoot market.

Olympus isn’t alone, as Canon is doing so with its EOS M100.

Olympus makes a point in its press release of mentioning ease of use for first-time photographers and those stepping up from a smartphone.

The E-M10 Mark III is slightly taller, wider, thicker and heavier than its predecessor. The body is nicely shaped and has several covered protrusions that should aid in providing a better grip on the camera.

16.1-MP LIVE MOS SENSOR

It continues to use a 16.1-MP Live MOS sensor, although images are now handled by the TruePic VIII processor. This is a Micro Four Thirds sensor, which means that when looking at lenses, focal lengths should be doubled to think of them in full-frame terms. 

The sensor has a sensitivity range of 100-6,400, which can be extended upward to 25,600. The E-M10 Mark III has in-body five-axis image stabilization.

The camera has both an electronic viewfinder and a 3.0-inch tilting touchscreen LCD monitor for Live View. The photographer can both select a focus point on the LCD monitor and take the photo. Note that the LCD screen does not flip upward 180 degrees for selfies.

Autofocus is helped by Olympus’ contrast-detection system that uses 121 focus points.

RAW and JPG images and video are saved to a singled SD memory card. Like most digital cameras today, the E-M10 Mark III has a number of so-called art filters and modes that let the photographer apply different effects.

MECHANICAL AND ELECTRONIC SHUTTERS

The E-M10 Mark III has both mechanical and electronic shutters. The mechanical has a shutter speed range of 1/4,000 to 60 seconds, plus B, while the range of the electronic shutter is 1/16,000 to 30 seconds, plus B. The maximum length of time when set to B is 30 minutes.

The E-M10 Mark III Can shoot at up to 8.6 frames per second with focus and exposure locked with the first shot or 4.8 frames per second with both active during the burst.

Video continues to be important for digital camera makers, and the E-M10 Mark III improves on the predecessor by adding 4K video, as well as Full HD, to its arsenal. Clips are limited to 29 minutes in length. The camera can also record high-speed video at 120 frames per second at a reduced resolution of 1280 x 720.

There is a small built-in flash that sits above the electronic viewfinder. The camera also has a hot shoe for more powerful, as well as remotely controlled, flash units.

The battery has a capacity of about 330 still shots or about 80 minutes of video.

The OM-D E-M10 Mark III has WiFi that can work in conjunction with the Olympus app for sharing photos.

Physical connectivity ports include USB Micro-B, USB 2.0 for a PC, Micro-HDMI (Type D).

Watch Olympus’ promotional video for the OM-D E-M10 Mark III:

The body is 4.8 x 3.3 x 1.9 inches (121.5 x 83.6 x 49.5mm) and weighs 14.5 ounces (410 grams).

The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III comes with the camera, USB cable, shoulder strap, warranty card, BLS-50 Li-ion battery and battery charger.

It will be available in black and silver in two packages:

  • Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III body only for US$649.99 (C$799.99)
  • Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III with 14-42mm EZ kit lens for US$799.99 (C$999.99)

About the Author

Mike Elek is a longtime journalist and was one of the original editors for The Wall Street Journal Online. He also has worked as a reporter and editor in Pittsburgh; Philadelphia; Vineland, N.J.; Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; New York City; and Hong Kong. He is a U.S. Air Force veteran. He shoots with film and digital cameras.