The OM-D E-M5 is Olympus’s latest release to the enthusiast-level market. Its design is somewhat similar to the ‘OM’ range. The E-M5 is the first camera in the new series to feature interchangeable lenses. This sits beside the PEN range quite nicely.

Although the two ranges sit side by side, the E-M5 has Olympus’s new electronic viewfinder. The main downfall this stunning new DSLR has is its current price tag. You can find the body-only camera for around £1000, and £1,150 with a lens. The best package I’ve found comes with the M.Zukio Digital ED 12-50mm f//3.5-6.3. There are other cameras on the market of a similar style, but Olympus definitely know what they’re doing here, and I cannot find much reason to disagree with these prices.

The E-M5 sports the new MOS (Micro Four Thirds) sensor that can produce up to 16.1 megapixel photos. As well as a huge pixel image, Olympus has also included their latest TruePic VI processor.

Low light level settings stretch from ISO 100 – 25,600. Burst rate is at 9fps. This gives the camera the ability to capture 12-bit Raw image files. It is able to film in full 1080p at 30fps and has a 35-point contrast Auto Focus system.

Olympus have pumped many functions into this camera. You have a decent range of manual exposure modes. These are Program, Aperture-priority, Shutter-priority, and full manual. For those of you that aren’t brave enough to venture into the in depth options then you have the iAuto mode as well that will set up each photo depending on your surroundings, location and subject.

There are 11 superb art effects that you can take full advantage of too. These can drastically change each image. There is even a 3D mode. A nice feature with this camera is you don’t have to take the photo with the art filters active. You can add them after the shot has been taken, giving you the chance to see how each one looks. You can use the art filters on any camera mode too, giving you complete control over how each shot looks. Most other cameras kind of force you into using the automatic modes, but Olympus know how important it is to be able to have complete control. After all, these are your photos.

Videos shoot at 1080p, and also come with a range of quality settings depending on the size of the memory card you have inserted. You can swap and change these settings on the fly. Sound is recorded with two microphones either side of the viewfinder. Unfortunately there is no external input.

There is no built in flash although Olympus do provide a basic clip on flash. There is also an input for more powerful flash guns and other compatible accessories.

The screen on the back is a 3” OLED monitor that is mostly used for your settings menus, but can also be used to take the photographs themselves. Being a mirrorless camera the viewfinder is a small monitor. It is a 1.44megapixel quality. It is a sharp image that comes in handy when the sun is out and in your eyes. No more glare across the front of the screen.

As you can see there are a huge number of functions involved with the E-M5. It is a perfect all rounded DSLR and well worth the price tag it comes with. Slightly out of budget? Then check out the Cannon EOS 700D

 

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Stef Murphy

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