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Thread: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

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    Default Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review





    Introduction


    Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii
    The newly released Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii, an update to the aging Mk i, features significant improvements to its capabilities and features elements found on the flagship E-M1. IT features

    • World's most advanced 5-Axis in body image stabilizer (5 stops compensation)
    • Splash, dust and freeze proof
    • OM-D movie - stable and smooth cinema quality video
    • Full 1080p HD at 24/25/30/60 fps
    • World's first 40megapixel Hi-Res shot using sensor shift technology
    • 1.05 megapixel touch-sensitive vari-angle LCD
    • 1/8000th sec mechanical shutter speed, 1/16, 000 electronic shutter speed
    • 2.35 megapixel EVF
    • Touch AF and movie touch controls
    • 16MP LiveMOS sensor
    • 11 fps sequential shooting
    • Live art filters and creative controls
    • Wi-fi remote control and transfer
    • Metal alloy chassis

    The E-M5 Mk ii comes in both black and silver and comes with a range of new accessories. They include a new bundled flash, FL-LM3, power battery holder HLD-8, External Dot Sight EE-1, external grip ECG-2, large eyecup EP-16, leather cover and body jacket CS-46 FBC and a dedicated underwater case, PT-EP13.

    FL-LM3
    The FL-LM3 has tilt and swivel capability for bounce flash. Like the camera it's bundled with, it is also dustproof and splashproof. It's capable of triggering remote flashes as well. This flash is not backwards compatible though and it is powered by the camera via a connector on the hotshoe. Old external flashes will still work with the E-M5 Mk ii.

    Power battery holder
    A new power battery holder, HLD-8 is made specifically for the E-M5 Mkii. Similar to the vertical grip of the Mk i, it has a 2 pieces design. The section that holds the battery and the vertical shutter release is the same on both the Mk i and Mk ii but the middle section is not. This new grip also features a 3.5mm earphone jack for videographers.

    External Dot Sight EE-1
    A new dot-sight, found built in on the previous Stylus SP-100, is now an external accessory for the OMD cameras. It is a universal accessory for use with super-telephoto lenses like the yet to be released M.Zuiko Digital 300mm f4 PRO, M.Zuiko Digital 40-150mm f2.8 PRO with teleconverter. It also has a reticle brightness contraol and the position is adjustable which makes it compatible with other cameras.

    External Grip ECG-2
    The external grip ECG-2, like the one for the E-M10, it made only for the Mk ii. Batteries can be replaced even when it is attached to the camera. It gives the Mk ii a slightly bigger grip, making it comfortable and features the arca swiss tripod plate standard which is compatible with many brands of tripod heads. It also features a built in L bracket which will allow vertical shooting while on a tripod.

    M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-150mm f4.0-5.6 II
    Along with the E-M5 Mk ii, a revised version of the M.Zuiko Digital 14-150 lens has been released name M.Zuiko Digital ED 14-150mm f4.0-5.6 II. Utilizing a 58mm filter thread, a weight of 285g and size of the lens having a measurement of 63.5mm diameter and 83mm length, it is a compact superzoom lens. It is also dustproof and splashproof, making is a good match with the E-M5 Mk ii.
    Containing 15 elements in 11 groups and a close focusing distance of 0.5m and a a 300mm 35mm equivalent, it works well as a close-up lens. It has a circular aperture design which gives pleasing circular bokeh. It features the MSC mechanism for fast, silent accurate high-speed focusing.
    The lens features a ZERO (Zuiko Extra-low Reflection Optical) coating, which is "Olympus' highest performance multi-coating type". "It is applied to all optical surfaces making it possible to thoroughly minimize ghosting and contrast-reducing lens flare."
    A wise man said, "Any available light is good light"

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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Vari-Angle Screen LCD 180 backside tilt








    5-AXIS STABILIZATION



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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Splashproof and Dustproof







    Microphone and Back Monitor addon





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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    ECG-2 Grip




    New bundled flash

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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    With grip


    Rear with vertical grip




    HLD-8 battery pack


    Dot Sight EE-1
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Putting the Olympus E-M5 Mk ii in my hands for the first time, it felt like I was carrying the E-M10, which had reasonably good ergonomics for hands my size, which is a good step up from the previous E-M5 which wasn't very comfortable.

    The review unit comes with firmware 1.0 for both the camera and the lens. Attaching the lens to the camera, it felt a little heavy as to be expected because of the size of the lens.
    Attaching the vertical grip to the E-M5 Mk ii with the grip made it better especially when using bigger lenses like the M.ZD 40-150mm f2.8 PRO, but small lenses with the camera without the grip attached were fine with my hands. It looks a bit odd for a vertical grip, similar to the one on the Sony A700 and A900, but it feel extremely comfortable in use despite it's odd design.

    The new vertical grip uses the same battery pack as the previous E-M5 Mk ii, but the thin piece is different. It also features a 3.5mm jack for videographers which is a blessing and something I've mentioned to Olympus the first time I saw the E-M1.

    Location of the 3.5mm earphone jack


    On the note of video, Olympus is taking a serious step into the video industry. With an improved 5 axis IS, videos and photos are stabilized up to 5 stops with only one other competitor having 5 stops stabilization but only in 2 axis. OM-D movie is Olympus' name for its video. It now has time code on the camera, audio levels on screen, recording videos up to Full HD 1080p at 60 frames per second. The color for peak focusing has also added yellow and red in addition to black and white in previous models.

    In a video shown by Olympus where the Mk ii was tested against a competitor for video tracking, it was sharper, had better color and white balance than its competitor which was an extremely impressive camera by itself, the E-M5 missed tracking once while the competitor missed its focus 8 times in CAF mode on both cameras in a clip of about a minute which is very good and important as in video, the background can always be changing.

    The Mk ii features a flip out screen, a first for the Olympus line of micro four thirds cameras which is in my opinion, a lot better than using a tilt screen. In video, there's no difference between tilt screen and flip screen unless you're doing a selfie video diary but in stills, it allows you to grab those shots at low or high angles in portrait orientation. Having used the old E-3 years ago, it was what I did then and couldn't do with the E-M1, but now it's possible once again with the Mk ii.

    The top of the camera has a similar locking mechanism for the mode dial to the E-M1, and also a similar power switch. It doesn't allow a one handed operation, but it's not a big drawback to me as I wouldn't want to operate one handed on a small camera for fear of dropping the camera. It also features more buttons i.e a dedicated HDR button, a video record button, a live view -evf button and a histogram button which allows you to switch to color creator, magnification and aspect ratios.

    The main and sub dials have a nice metallic design to them which gives a good grip even if your fingers are wet due to the ridge design. Landscape and pano photographers would be happy to know that the tripod socket is in alignment with the lens. It features the switch found on the E-M1 which allows the user to change what the main and sub dial does.

    The EVF is the same as the E-M1 but it has a faster refresh rate of 10ms as compared to the E-M1 with a refresh rate of 16ms. When the E-P1 came out, the released a simplified version of changing the settings, subsequent models required that the user go through menus to find the Super Control Panel (SCP) which is a type of layout on screen that shows all the settings that one would normally use, more detailed than the simplified view. It is now enabled by default.

    The camera has had its data port removed though and so old accessories such as the penpal, macro LED lights and flashes with dataport won't work with it anymore. A new flash with 360 rotation and tilt ability will come packaged with the Mk ii which I absolutely love. In a small room, it provides enough power to bounce. It doesn't have a battery compartment as it draws power from a redesigned hotshoe but it'll still work with hotshoe flashes like the FL-600R.

    The camera is made in Vietnam but it still feels solid. And the IO ports are a 3.5mm microphone input, micro HDMI and USB AV/OUT.

    For pano photographers, you'll be glad to know that the tripod socket aligns with the centre of the lens. Autofocus is also very fast and accurate from the short time I had it.
    Last edited by spidey89; 5th February 2015 at 02:54 PM.
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    When using flash with the hi res mode, TTL flashes will not work and manual flashes will work partially. In the video below, it's clear that the flash fires multiple times with the result in the image below the video and in the video



    Last edited by spidey89; 5th February 2015 at 02:54 PM.
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    In available hi res mode, the camera will shoot 8 images and interpolate them into a 40 megapixel image. This is done most likely by utilizing the IS system. It's limited to shoot 8s and f8 (whichever it reaches first) for a reason. Each shot will require the same exposure settings and multiply by 8.

    The video below shows an image shot at 4secs, it'll look like the camera is frozen, but it's shooting and interpolating.

    Last edited by spidey89; 5th February 2015 at 03:01 PM.
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    In this video, you can see the performance of the silent shutter in comparison to a regular shutter. Even the AF confirmation beep is off in silent shutter operation.

    Last edited by spidey89; 5th February 2015 at 02:54 PM.
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Here's a short video to show the E-M5 Mk ii video capabilities

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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Here's another short video to show the E-M5 Mk ii video capabilities

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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Here's the color accuracy of the E-M5 Mk ii with the white balance custom to a grey card, tested against a calibrated image from an E-M1. Both were shot at the same setting measured with a light meter. The dynamic range of the E-M5 Mk ii seems to have improved, even in comparison to the E-M1. For some reason, the E-M5 image looks a bit under despite having the exact same exposure values



    As it's been mentioned, hi res mod must be used on a tripod. And the tripod must be sturdy, and best to use a cable release as the results below shows, all crop to approx 100%



    Just for the purpose of this review, I tried it handheld, results should be similar if you're shooting a moving object. The shutter speed is very fast for handheld, and it's still blur.


    Come back later for more sample images and videos
    Last edited by spidey89; 5th February 2015 at 02:56 PM.
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    All images from here are out of camera jpegs and shot with the M.ZD ii 14-150mm









    Last edited by spidey89; 10th February 2015 at 11:18 PM.
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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review









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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review









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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review









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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review









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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review





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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Adding on to Spidey's excellent start, as a landscape fanatic, I had been rather intrigued by the 40MP and what it can do on the High Res mode. Here's a shot to show. the file is 7296x5472 = 40MPixels...when shooting in Hi res, the Jpeg file is about 18MB. Typically EM1/EM10 Raw files size is about this size as well. The Hi Res Raw takes about whopping 100MB, seriously takes up a lot of (my computer at least) resources trying to open it in Olympus Viewer 3, yes, it does read it there, but it always crashes when I'm trying to zoom in.

    Here's a couple of shot to show
    F6.3, 1/25sec. Red box shows the area of the next crop shot shown


    Can't really see the block number 540 with my naked eyes, will need possibly with a long tele zoom, but with 40MP it's highly possible even on 9mm (18mm equivalent)


    Same shot, Lightroom tweaked, I find that the dynamic range seems to improve, most test to follow.


    Last edited by wonglp; 6th February 2015 at 01:43 AM.

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    Default Re: Olympus OMD E-M5 Mk ii Hands-on Review

    Hi Res 40MP Mode
    So is this a bed of roses for all situations with this Hi Res mode? Not really, quite a few limitations to take note of.
    1. F8
    2. ISO1600
    3. 8sec
    4. Stable support (tripod, clamp etc), very susceptible to even the most minor shake, like pressing the shutter button lightly on a stable tripod & ballhead is almost impossible to yield sharp images. Don't even think about handholding it, even at 1/1000s.
    5. Shoot remotely either via cable release, wifi "remote shoot" function, or I found that making the screen articulated to the side and use touchscreen can sometime prevent shake. See pic below
    6. Can't use it with any Live functions (Bulb, time or composite)



    If you shoot and moving objects,if the shutter speed is not that slow, it may produce such a result (a quick count, you can see that the sensor really shifted 8 x)



    According to Olympus this is to allow the best image quality (F8 for diffraction, ISO1600 to retain details). For 8sec long exposure limit, it actually stacks the picture up into a 64sec shot, but in the meanwhile of shooting, it does seem the camera is "frozen", don't touch it though as that may induce shakes, happened to me a couple of time. I'm still trying more of this feature as it seems to become a single long exposure of 64sec, rather than compositing 8 shots of 8sec like live composite, however, some shots I took does seem to look like a mix of both. more test to be done to see. As for limitation of not able to use live function seems to be due to the lack of resources.

    If you can work around/understand limitations, the 40MP can yield impressive results. More shots to share when ready
    Last edited by wonglp; 6th February 2015 at 02:19 AM.

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