WHATS NEXT FOR M43, after Olympus, what future is left?


tommyk

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I HAVE 3 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOU ALL :

Do you think that Olympus-branded cameras will ever compete against full-frame professional options, for sports and photojournalism?


Given the challenging market situation, where do you see the biggest opportunities for Olympus-branded cameras and lenses?

Do you think that Olympus as a photographic brand will be in a stronger position in one year’s time than it is today?


What do you all think? Look forward to get some feedback...
 

Pitachu

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I HAVE 3 QUESTIONS TO ASK YOU ALL :

Do you think that Olympus-branded cameras will ever compete against full-frame professional options, for sports and photojournalism?
> Generally, I feel that Olympus users chose Olympus because they do not have a need for a larger sensor and they prefer lighter body and lenses. I don't think Olympus or it's users intend to compete against full frame professional options. If I need what Full Frame Pro features, I will just get a Full Frame system, probably for paid jobs as an additional system. But I will never bring a set of Full Frame Pro equipment for my travel and trekking. To me, M43 and Full Frame are 2 different tools for different kind of jobs.


Given the challenging market situation, where do you see the biggest opportunities for Olympus-branded cameras and lenses?
>Olympus generally have to target Advanced Hobbyists and Enthusiasts. Olympus is doing pretty well with its photography workshops, which the 100+ online seats are snapped up in a few hours, so they still have a large group of enthusiasts customers. They do have a small market of professionals that prefer M43 format but I do think it is pretty small.

Do you think that Olympus as a photographic brand will be in a stronger position in one year’s time than it is today?
>In my opinion Olympus is still strong in certain niches but I don't think it can be stronger unless it can innovate some features which other brands to not have. And I cannot imagine Olympus or JIP pumping money into R&D during this pandamic and dropping camera sales across all brands. Olympus stronghold of IBIS 7 stops have just been overtaken by Canon EOS-R and they have also lagged behind Panasonic for video recording.

There is a lot of work to be done if Olympus wants to catch up. I still love Olympus for all its current offerings of current and future Lenses and Bodies but I am not blinded as to what other brands are offering :)


What do you all think? Look forward to get some feedback...
 

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Blu-By-U

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Well answered Pitachu.

I was looking at the EM10mk4 rumours, it does not look very colorful/cheerful. What's coming in the near future may only be what's already in the final stages. As for new, we really have to wait and see. Thankfully we still have Sharp, Panasonic and Blackmagic to hope for.
 

one eye jack

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Do you think that Olympus-branded cameras will ever compete against full-frame professional options, for sports and photojournalism?

Olympus had no idea or direction but only to continue to think that size and weight alone will win over market just like pentax although fullframe did with it's miniturised series of slr. Olympus had incremental improvements after being critisized about features that are important to the professionals like autofocus in sports photography which took a few generations to reach a level if competency.


Given the challenging market situation, where do you see the biggest opportunities for Olympus-branded cameras and lenses?

It is clear by now that casual or recreational photography has already been taken over by smart phones because of it's size, convenience and cost. Of course there is the enthusuast market for people who want to be more creative with regards to photography. There is a lot of the me too products. Olympus need to get rid of old assumptions of the photo business, to really think about what consumers want.

Do you think that Olympus as a photographic brand will be in a stronger position in one year’s time than it is?

A brand is only as good as it's products. Many japanese photography brands has gone into history and Olympus is no different.

We can take advice from Elon Musk
who said to make an impact your product cannot be just as good because people will still buy branded. The product needs to be exceptionally good ( significantly superior) in order that consumers will want to switch over or buy. So the strategy of offering only incremental improvements is not viable to stay relevant. Another thing is, is there a japanese Elon Musk out there with radical and critical thinking?
 

ricohflex

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Olympus will remain an important (and profit making) manufacturer of medical endoscopy equipment. And maybe microscopes.

As for digital cameras, the brand Olympus will eventually die after a short period of pretence.

JIP is primarily there to allow the parent company Olympus to get rid of its staff in the Camera Division in a technically legal way in Japan - without incurring massive layoff compensation costs. It is a human resource thing and a legal loophole.
JIP was never about keeping the Olympus name alive in digital cameras. Some valuable Olympus patents may be sold by JIP.

Olympus Camera Division failed because its management lacked Vision and ability to adapt to rapidly changing circumstances.
They clung on to an obsolete dogma of Micro Four Thirds sensor when competitors have accelerated past Olympus in technological advances.
Prices of full frame sensors fell while their capability improved. MFT may be acceptable in 2008. But not in 2020.

This deliberate stagnation looks so strange to an outsider observer.

The Olympus Camera Division management seems incompetent.

Olympus Camera Division has failed to properly manage the Brand Image of Olympus cameras, which in 1983 was up there with the best.
Olympus began to make shoddy products in Third World countries.
Forsaking the paramount "Made in Japan" hallmark of top quality.


Credit : andyflorint.blogspot.com + Anonymous
Posted 18th April 2014 by Anonymous
His post was Titled: Please not again. Broken Lens (Olympus M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6 II R for MFT)

 

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ricohflex

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Nikon announced Z5 on 21 July 2020. It cost US$1,400 which is about SGD$1938.
Z5 has 2 UHS II card slots, IBIS, 4K video with a 1.7x crop, FULL FRAME sensor.
Z5 size is (134 x 101 x 70 mm). Z6 size is (134 x 101 x 68 mm). Very close.
This is in the Nikon line 1 step above entry level Z50. i.e. the 2nd LOWEST model. . The Z5 price may drop fast because it is priced too close to Z6.
Costing a bit more, the Z6 has much better features, though with 1 card slot.
The Z5 suggests that future Z6S and Z7S may have 2 card slots - due to competitor's pressure from Canon R5 and R6.

Even if Olympus Camera Division did not go kaput, how can its cameras with a MFT sensor and high prices compete with other brands?
How to compete?
Oh but Olympus is all about small size. Put the OM-D E-M1X next to a Z5 or Z6.
 

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Pitachu

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Here we go again...... if a bigger sensor is your highest priority, by all means go for the Z5.

A fair comparison with the Nikon Z5 is the Olympus EM1 Mk3.

Nikon Z5 (US$1399)Olympus EM1 Mk3 (US$1699)
Sensor SizeFull FrameMicro Four Thirds
Resolution25 mp (25% more)20mp
Dimensions134mm x 101mm x 70mm134mm x 91mm x 69mm
Weight675g (95g heavier)580g
Std Zoom 24-70mmNikon 24-70 2.8 (US$2296)Olympus 12-40 2.8Pro (US$999)
Weight of Lens805g385g
Total weight of Body plus lens1480g965g
Total price of Body plus lensUS$3695US$2698
ScreenTiltFully Articulated
Continuous Drive4.5 Frame Per Sec60 Frames Per Second

The Z5 is 25megapixel vs the Olympus Em1 Mk3 @ 20mp (25% more pixel).

But with a standard pro quality lens with 24mm - 70mm equivalend,
the Nikon Z5 kit costs about US$1000 more, and that is for only 1 lenses.
If you add a few more lenses along the way, it will cost even much more.

Plus the weight of the Nikon Z5 with lens is 1480g compared to 865g for
the Olympus with Lens. May not make a difference if you shoot for 1 to 2
hours. But a huge difference if you carry your camera for 1 whole day
during travel and trekking.

I have also added 2 features important to be below, a Fully Articulated Screen
and 60fps.

To me, I prefer the Olympus setup because sensor size and resolution above
20mp is not important to me, and I rather have a lighter and cheaper system.

By the way, I am not even having the EM1 Mk3 but the EM5 Mk3,
which is much cheaper and lighter but with 95% of the features :)




Nikon announced Z5 on 21 July 2020. It cost US$1,400 which is about SGD$1938.
Z5 has 2 UHS II card slots, IBIS, 4K video with a 1.7x crop, FULL FRAME sensor.
Z5 size is (134 x 101 x 70 mm). Z6 size is (134 x 101 x 68 mm). Very close.
This is in the Nikon line 1 step above entry level Z50. i.e. the 2nd LOWEST model. . The Z5 price may drop fast because it is priced too close to Z6.
For a bit more Z6 has much better features, though with 1 card slot.
The Z5 suggests that future Z6 Mk2 and Z7 Mk2 may have 2 card slots - due to competitor's pressure from Canon R5 and R6.
Maybe Z50 and Z5 are aimed at competitors' higher end expensive compact point & shoot cameras.
Like for example Sony RX100 Mk 7.

Even if Olympus Camera Division did not go kaput, how can its cameras compete with a MFT sensor and high prices?
The EM1 Mk3 has 2 card slots but only 1 slot is UHS II.
The OM-D E-M1X original launch price was SGD$4,448. With a MFT sensor. This is Olympus top model.
How to compete?
Oh but Olympus is all about small size.
Sure, please put the OM-D E-M1X next to a Z5 or Z6.
The small size they were talking about, was referring to the MFT sensor. 4 times smaller than Full Frame.
Not referring to the body size.
 

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ricohflex

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Photography is only a hobby. Cameras and lenses are just tools. There are more important matters.
China is facing a water borne disaster now due to exceptional prolonged heavy rains.
And if the 3 Gorges Dam breaks, it is mayhem. Monitor what happens.

 

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tommyk

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I agree that photography is only a hobby for 99% of us. The population of hobbyist and will buy ILC will decrease even more in 10 years.

My prediction in 10 years :

1. Olympus cameras will not be in production anymore - 100% certainty
2. Panasonic Cameras will not be in production anymore - 90%
3. Only Canon and Sony will remain in the full frame business - 80%
4. Pentax, Ricoh, Nikon, Fuji will have exited the camera business - 60%
5. The number of camera units sold worldwide will be reduced to less than 8 million worldwide - 90% (2010 - 121 million, 2019 - 15 million)
6. Clubsnap forum will not exists - 70%
7. Singapore will have less than 5 camera retail merchants - 90%

Feel free to comment and add your predictions!
 

ricohflex

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In 10 years some of us Clubsnap members may be dead. That is normal.

Panasonic cameras is strong in professional video cameras and will be continuing that.

Sony modus operandi is create a market niche. Cream off massive profits at the top of the trend.
Then Sony will exit the business when the trend fades. Proven track record of Sony doing this - Walkman tape cassette recorders/players, Minidisc recorders/players, Expensive high end CD players, Expensive high end High Fidelity amplifiers, Memory Stick, DAT, co-inventor of CD, 3.5 inch floppy.
Sony hit jackpot making sensors and makes so much money from sensors that it may or may not wish to continue making cameras.

Clubsnap will continue to exist. Many members may be using mobile phones to take photos.

In future number of camera units sold may plateau to a steady state or even reverse trend and increase. Why?
Because in the past sensors were very expensive. Early digital cameras were ridiculously expensive and miserably weak in technical ability.
Of course the public refrained from buying a piece of very expensive JUNK that would be obsolete a few years after purchase.
Consumers pulled the hand brake and said STOP buying. Wait.

Please don't put all the blame for the drop in cameras sales on smart mobile phones.
When Film Cameras faded into obscurity in late 1990's, of course consumers mostly stopped buying film cameras.

Credit: Statista


Credit: Reddit


The manufacturers experimented with early models of digital cameras for consumer market.
Unfortunately many of their risky decisions did not pay off. The early digital cameras offered were expensive and incapable.
After the initial rush by consumers to try out this novelty from 1999 to 2010, digital camera sales plummeted.
Not because of mobile phones. The real reason for crash in sales is that early digital cameras were AWFUL and overpriced.


You know the manufacturers went through a tough period of experimentation with various formats of sensors.
Now in 2020 the market has consolidated and non-viable formats like FT and MFT have fallen.

When manufacturers fool around with various digital camera sensor formats, they are telling the consumers that [we do not yet know what we are doing - but in the mean time, we are making some interim cameras (until we get it right) and we hope you will buy a lot of them]. This silly idea failed by 2020.

By 2020 there seems a confluence of vast improvements in:
memory card capacity and speed
Increase in size of sensors and drop in price
LCD screen improvements
Autofocus technology
Anti-shake technology
Computer hardware and software to allow hobbyists to effectively handle digital images at home
Battery technology (want to see something ridiculous from the past? The 1.5 MP (that is not 15MP, it is not a typo, it really is 1½ megapixel) Kodak DCS 420 which cost US$12,000 at the time of launch in 1994. See how big the nickel hydride battery was. {credit : Wikiwand})


In future, many cameras have Full Frame sensors at reasonable price.
Why will people begin to buy digital cameras again?
Because after initial purchase, the USAGE costs of modern 2020 digital cameras is very low or almost free.
Presuming you already have many of the required memory cards.
Compare that to the many thousands of $$$ we had wasted on buying hundreds/thousands of rolls of Film, getting them developed and printed at the photo labs, making enlargements, getting slides developed and mounted. Film developing & printing lab owners were driving BMWs, buying houses and laughing all the way to the bank. Not now.
 

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Castor Troy

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Oct 28, 2009
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Here we go again...... if a bigger sensor is your highest priority, by all means go for the Z5.

A fair comparison with the Nikon Z5 is the Olympus EM1 Mk3.

Nikon Z5 (US$1399)Olympus EM1 Mk3 (US$1699)
Sensor SizeFull FrameMicro Four Thirds
Resolution25 mp (25% more)20mp
Dimensions134mm x 101mm x 70mm134mm x 91mm x 69mm
Weight675g (95g heavier)580g
Std Zoom 24-70mmNikon 24-70 2.8 (US$2296)Olympus 12-40 2.8Pro (US$999)
Weight of Lens805g385g
Total weight of Body plus lens1480g965g

Total price of Body plus lensUS$3695US$2698
ScreenTiltFully Articulated
Continuous Drive4.5 Frame Per Sec60 Frames Per Second

The Z5 is 25megapixel vs the Olympus Em1 Mk3 @ 20mp (25% more pixel).

But with a standard pro quality lens with 24mm - 70mm equivalend,
the Nikon Z5 kit costs about US$1000 more, and that is for only 1 lenses.
If you add a few more lenses along the way, it will cost even much more.

Plus the weight of the Nikon Z5 with lens is 1480g compared to 865g for
the Olympus with Lens. May not make a difference if you shoot for 1 to 2
hours. But a huge difference if you carry your camera for 1 whole day
during travel and trekking.

I have also added 2 features important to be below, a Fully Articulated Screen
and 60fps.

To me, I prefer the Olympus setup because sensor size and resolution above
20mp is not important to me, and I rather have a lighter and cheaper system.

By the way, I am not even having the EM1 Mk3 but the EM5 Mk3,
which is much cheaper and lighter but with 95% of the features :)
A more accurate comparison would be the 24-70/4 Z mount. Which has superior Shallow depth of field capabilities.
The Olympus is a F5.6 equivalent....
Oh? But F2.8 is F2.8?
Yes. But the sensor is 1/4 the size.
Limited dynamic range, detail and high ISO capabilities...
Oh, if you want high-ISO use a prime?
But the Z50/1.8 is cheaper than the Olympus Pro 25/1.2...
 

tommyk

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Jun 10, 2013
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Sony just bagged a contract with Associated Press to equip their professional photographers with Sony Equipment (A9ii and many lenses each) who were previously using Canon and Nikon. This is supposed to be an endorsement of Sony's expansion into the professional market.

Next company to go "Olymbust" will be...... Nikon????
 

Pitachu

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Like I say, if you prefer certain strengths of Full Frame or Z5, by all means, go for it.
M43 Aperature 2.8 is still 2.8 (in terms of speed, only DOF is 5.6 equivalent)

M43 strength is smaller telephoto lenses, which naturally has good Depth of Field even at F8 at 300mm or more.

There are already many websites and youtube videos comparing M43 with Full Frame
taking the same photo and printing it large format and the difference is negligible, just google for them.

A lot of the marketing messages focus on stuff like higher resolution or wider dynamic range etc.
If that's what you want, by all means go for it.

In my case, I find only a very small percentage of photos where higher resolution or wider dynamic range sensors
make a difference. (I have Canon 5D Mk2 and Sony A7 II too for my events company) :cool:

Camera gears are just tools after all.

A more accurate comparison would be the 24-70/4 Z mount. Which has superior Shallow depth of field capabilities.
The Olympus is a F5.6 equivalent....
Oh? But F2.8 is F2.8?
Yes. But the sensor is 1/4 the size.
Limited dynamic range, detail and high ISO capabilities...
Oh, if you want high-ISO use a prime?
But the Z50/1.8 is cheaper than the Olympus Pro 25/1.2...
 

ricohflex

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Feb 24, 2005
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Nikon's parent company is Mitsubishi which is the king of conglomerates in Japan. Nikon made optical equipment for Japan military.
A dip in camera sales is not going to hurt this company. Nikon has a world wide user base built up since early 1950s.
Nikon and Canon were cautious and made the move to mirrorless late in the game.
But cautiousness saved Nikon and Canon from making fatal errors - which apparently Olympus made (twice) with FT and MFT.

Sony is like a migrating herd of wildebeest moving onward to other things when it has eaten and exhausted the pasture.
Sony is not about longevity of a product category.

In the Associated Press arrangement, who pays whom?
Did Associated Press pay Sony for the cameras and lenses (maybe at a discount)?
Or did Sony pay Associated Press to make its staff/reporters use Sony cameras?

If you have to pay someone to use your equipment, what does that say about the (lack of) quality of your equipment?
Top model A9 II made in Thailand? In my book, that is strictly No No.

Canon and Nikon can save themselves by moving production of top few models back to Japan.
Brand image is priceless & important. Don't fritter it away stupidly for short term gains.
Like some company (now deservedly dead) going to Vietnam.
 

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ricohflex

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Sensor size makes a difference.
If not, then most cameras today would still be using 1÷ 2.33 inch (6.08mm x 4.56 mm) sensor.
No need for MFT, APS-C, Full Frame, pseudo medium format sensors.

The website reviewer claims he cannot see the difference in a photo taken with MFT vs Full Frame?
Really? How much did Olympus pay him?
There are also people on the Internet who claim they are Jesus Christ. We can choose to believe if we wish to.
(This remark is not about religion. It is a satire that there all kinds of preposterous claims by bizarre crackpot websites on the Internet.)
In his book, the late-Anthony Bourdian rejected an ersatz product named "I can't believe it's not butter". He said as a professional chef "I can".
Likewise professional photographers who claim they use XYZ equipment - because their clients are happy and cannot tell the difference in the photos, seem a bit dodgy. If you are paid as a professional then you bring the best equipment you can afford, that best matches the task at hand. You do NOT bring XYZ cameras and lenses to do the job "because the client is so ignorant, he cannot tell the difference in the photos". That is a wrong attitude.
 

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tommyk

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Jesus Christ died for our sins 2000 years ago. We are all sinners (just by looking at another woman lustfully in our minds even without touching them, means we have sinned, just an example. I was also shocked to hear this when I was not yet a Christian), Jesus Christ died for our sins, to save us and give us eternal life. Those who accept him as Lord and Saviour will have eternal life. So those who claim to be him now are clearly not true. No one is Jesus Christ except HIM who died for us 2000 years ago.

I still remember that we learnt in school that man originates from apes, Darwinian theory - This is an absolute lie. (Just google how it was perpetuated during the 19th century onwards). Our science book in school cannot lean towards "religion" and likely gave us Darwin's theory of evolution as an answer to the man's existence.

God created the universe and God created us.
Big bang theory does not explain the creation of the universe, it only explains what happens after the first few mili-seconds. A big bang cannot come from nothing, there must be an intelligent designer. The universe must have a creator or intelligent designer.

Even mathematicians, physicist, scientists who are not Christians believe in an almighty creator who designed the universe. (Eg David Berlinski). We are too well designed to just appear by random on earth. An example is the perfect symmetry of our DNA and implies there is a ALMIGHTY DESIGNER. The head of The Human Genome Project - Francis Collins, who sequence our DNA believe that HUMANS are created by God and not evolved from apes or came by because of random events. World renowned synthetic organic Chemist (the study of the building blocks of simple life forms among others) - James Tour of Rice UNiversity also confirms that we cannot evolve from apes and there must be an intelligent designer. Living things are made of just four classes of organic compounds: proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, and nucleic acids. No one can create life from these 4 basic compounds. Only God can.(Please google all these names and their testimonies of Jesus Christ)

So the truth is God created us.

And those who accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior will have eternal life.
 

Castor Troy

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Oct 28, 2009
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Like I say, if you prefer certain strengths of Full Frame or Z5, by all means, go for it.
M43 Aperature 2.8 is still 2.8 (in terms of speed, only DOF is 5.6 equivalent)

M43 strength is smaller telephoto lenses, which naturally has good Depth of Field even at F8 at 300mm or more.

There are already many websites and youtube videos comparing M43 with Full Frame
taking the same photo and printing it large format and the difference is negligible, just google for them.

A lot of the marketing messages focus on stuff like higher resolution or wider dynamic range etc.
If that's what you want, by all means go for it.

In my case, I find only a very small percentage of photos where higher resolution or wider dynamic range sensors
make a difference. (I have Canon 5D Mk2 and Sony A7 II too for my events company) :cool:

Camera gears are just tools after all.
The problem is the market has done exactly that....Going for full-frame
Even when I print 4R, I can tell the difference between m43 and FF.
Just take a shot indoors at ISO400 and above.
The blurring of detail, noise and invasive noise reduction is there.
Humans end up looking waxy and plasticky.
 

Pitachu

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Sep 18, 2019
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Sensor size makes a difference.
If not, then most cameras today would still be using 1÷ 2.33 inch (6.08mm x 4.56 mm) sensor.
No need for MFT, APS-C, Full Frame, pseudo medium format sensors.

>Sensor size makes a difference (law of physics, fully agree!)
>
>Practicality is more important. If not, why every photographer is not
> using Medium Format Cameras to shoot everything?
> If not, why yourself and all the rest of the photographers are not using
> the Fujifilm GFX 100 Medium with 102 Megapixel?
>
> It is exactly the same reason why some of us choose M43 or even 1 / 2/3" sensor caneras.

> We need to realize that sometimes we are being oversold on specifications that we do not need.
> We need to cut ourselves from all the marketing crap and choose the tools that best suit our needs.


The website reviewer claims he cannot see the difference in a photo taken with MFT vs Full Frame?
Really? How much did Olympus pay him?
> Again, this is about practicality. The youtube video I saw (need to search for it again) is a large
format printer, who printed 4 posters taken with Full Frame and M43 and asked a few photographers
and identify the prints and they couldn't

This does not mean that M43 is equal to FF in terms of image quality. You may be able to see some
difference, but in most of the shots that did not stretch the dynamic range or resolution, you probably
cannot spot the differences after it is printed out.
 

Pitachu

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I personally know a Photographer who take wedding shots with Olympus M43.
His shots are definitely not blur, plasticity or full of invasive noise as he is quite
sought after despite charging a premium price.

You should check the settings on your M43 camera and the lighting. If still in doubt,
I can bring you along to one of Olympus Portrait workshops, where the Course
Leader who owns a Wedding Studio, shows you how he take his shots.

Olympus dont restrict other brands being used during their future workshops
so you can shoot with your Sony or whatever brand to compare.


The problem is the market has done exactly that....Going for full-frame
Even when I print 4R, I can tell the difference between m43 and FF.
Just take a shot indoors at ISO400 and above.
The blurring of detail, noise and invasive noise reduction is there.
Humans end up looking waxy and plasticky.
 

ricohflex

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Price. I wish I could afford medium format digital. Definitely prefer medium format digital over MFT.