Passion for the Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II & M. ZUIKO PRO Lenses

By Shinya Yoshimori

I tried three lenses. Which one is the best for me?

Since last spring I have been using the Olympus PEN-F. But recently I also began to use the Olympus OM-D E-M1 Mark II, which went on release at the end of 2016.

Adopting the body design and basic specifications of the OM-D E-M1, a flagship model of the camera manufacturer, the OM-D E-M1 Mark II changed image sensor and processor. Also, it improved the abilities of continuous shooting and AF: it fires off at up to 18 fps in AF/AE tracking and has 121-point all cross-type on-chip phase detection AF (E-M1 shoots at up to 9 fps in AF/AE tracking and 81-point contrast AF combined with 37-point phase detection AF). That is a huge improvement.

Moreover, it is also equipped with OM-D movie to record 4K videos. And it is dust- and drip-proof, a feature that the PEN-F does not have. It is packed with dual SD card slots, a new lithium-ion battery, which shows the battery percentage and is accompanied by a rapid battery charger, Focus Stacking and the like. It is an attractive flagship model.

The problem is interchangeable lenses. I do not have any of them that match optical performance or the body of this attractive camera. That is because when it comes to choosing lenses, portability is most important to me and I have got only ones that suit to the PEN-F or the Panasonic GM5.

But before holidays I was fortunate enough to borrow three M.ZUIKO PRO lenses from Olympus: the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 7-14mm F2.8 PRO, a large-aperture wide-angle zoom lens, the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 25mm F1.2 PRO, a large-aperture standard single focus lens, and the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-100mm F4.0 PRO, a high-magnification zoom that offers professional image quality and performance.

What do I make of them? With the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 7-14mm F2.8 PRO I can shoot at an angle which I am happy with (I like wide-angle lenses). The M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 25mm F1.2 PRO provides sharp images even with an open aperture of F1.2 as well as lovely blurs. And it is familiar to me as I began photography with the Olympus OM-1 combined with the ZUIKO 55mm F1.2.

As with the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 25mm F1.2 PRO, the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-100mm F4.0 PRO is new. I was impressed by its high image quality, which is clearly different from conventional high magnification standard lenses. Its performance, including 5-axis Sync IS, which provides the world’s most powerful 6.5 shutter speed steps of compensation, and close-ups with a minimum working distance of 1.5cm, is also surprising.

All three lenses are excellent and attractive. I want them all! But I can’t! If I choose one of them, I will pick out the M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 12-100mm F4.0 PRO for its usability and versatility.

Sample images

Shinya Yoshimori

He is a professional photographer in Japan. He comments on cameras and lenses and is regarded in the industry as the man who likes cameras the most in the world. He loves everything about cameras from taking photos to seeing to touching to buying and dreaming of cameras. Not surprisingly, he collects a variety of cameras from digital to compact to classical to silver salt. The column title expresses his deep passion for them in his native accent (Hiroshima in western Japan)―Washa camera ga sukinajya (I love cameras).

New name: the title of Yoshimori’s column has been slightly changed from “My Passion is the Camera”.

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