In a release that they’ve hyped for weeks now, Olympus finally pulled the covers off their first Micro Four-Thirds format camera, the E-P1.
Good product photography - sure looks dainty doesn't it?
For those of you not already in the know, Micro Four-Thirds is a new interchangeable lens system developed by Olympus and Panasonic which is the first mirror-less digital camera system to feature interchangeable lenses. The removal of the mirror (and associated prism and optical viewfinder) and the exclusive usage of live view for image preview enables a drastic size reduction for both cameras and lenses, and as you can see here, the new Olympus E-P1 is tiny tiny tiny.
How tiny? The exact specs on the E-P1 are 121 x 70 x 35mm (4.7 x 2.8 x 1.4 in) and 335 g (11.8 oz) – body only, with no batteries – which firmly plants it in compact camera category. Of course, you’ll need to attach a lens at some point before shooting, which will add some bulk, but as of now the E-P1 indisputably offers the most compact interchangeable lens solution.
The following is a run-down of things you might have already picked up from other news sources or blogs. The real interesting stuff is the size and equivalent aperture/focal length comparison, at Size Comparison.
The Photo Marketing Association’s Annual show – PMA 2009 – recently came and passed. For those of you who don’t know, PMA is like the E3 of photography, where companies making everything from cameras to printers bust out the goods and new releases. It, along with the bi-yearly Photokina in the Fall, are when the majority of product announcements come out.
Depending on the market segment you were interested in, this year’s PMA could have offered a healthy bounty, or simply have been a dud.
If you were in the DSLR market, there was barely anything new emerging on the landscape. Neither of the big two – Canon and Nikon – released any new DSLRs, with just two specialty tilt-shift lenses from Canon and a “normal” APS-C prime in the new 35mm f/1.8 AF-S DX from Nikon making headlines. Pentax, in what seems to be an ongoing niche market they’re targeting, came out with a 15mm f/4 pancake. And Sony, surprisingly, produced nothing of note.
Nikon 35mm f/1.8 AF-S DX
Nikon 35mm f/1.8 AF-S
For the Nikonians out there, the new prime is an encouraging sign that Nikon is finally getting with the program and pumping out AF-S lenses for its entire range. For one, this gives a modern and fast-focusing midrange prime for APS-C crop users, which will finally provide an alternative and offer some competition to Sigma’s 30mm f/1.4 DC HSM which was previously the only lens in this market segment. Canon still lacks a real solution for this range, forcing users into the bigger and much more expensive 35 f/1.4 L.