View Full Version : E-M1 hands-on event 12/09/2013

14th September 2013, 02:08 AM
It was extremely good of Olympus to put on an event for members of this forum to try the new E-M1 just two days after its launch. The venue was Whitespace Studio near Leicester Square and it ran from 3.00pm to 8.00pm, giving everyone the opportunity of some extensive hands-on time with the five bodies and variety of lenses provided. Of course, I took some pictures with the new camera, but first a few of the event taken with my own E-M5.

Here's the man to thank, Mark Thackara of Olympus UK who organized the event together with our own Ian Burley. Rumours that Mark's shirt was responsible for the strange colour casts in the studio are entirely unfounded. :D


There was plenty of discussion and not just about the camera, as some members met each other for the first time or renewed acquaitances.



Apart from the strange cast from the lights, the studio was a little dim and it was inevitable that members would venture outside. Here, the Four Thirds 50-200mm f2.8/3.5 is put through its paces, testing focus on the E-M1.


This lens certainly doesn't look out of place on an OM-D and now that PDAF is available in the E-M1 it's bound to be very popular.


Testing the Four Thirds 50mm macro, a lens not noted for having fast, reliable focus even on Four Thirds bodies. However, it coped well on the E-M1 in this situation.


And now a few taken on the E-M1

I found this in a side room. Light was not great but the 12-60mm focussed very fast and positively.


Ian arrived about 5.00pm, having first attended a prior engagement. 45mm f1.8


Stereo togs. 45mm f1.8


Waiting...... 45mm f1.8


Discussing the shot (One) 45mm f2.2


Discussing the shot (Two) 45mm f3.5


Rush to the shop before it sells out! 45mm f3.5


Playing with light. 45mm f4.5


14th September 2013, 02:33 AM
My first impressions of shooting with the E-M1 were very good. The button placements are much improved and there is much more control without delving into the menus compared to the E-M5. The body is only slightly larger than the E-M5 but the build quality and finish is much improved, even though it was already very good. Focusing of Four Thirds lenses using the new on-sensor PDAF was excellent for static subjects - I didn't get the opportunity to try C-AF on anything moving.

Because the cameras were virtually new from the factory they hadn't been set up and I used a fair bit of my hands-on time doing just that. Why Olympus ship their cameras with one of the best features disabled goodness knows. It took me a while to remember which menu I needed to enable the Super Control Panel. Similarly turning off the Live Guide (or whatever it is called), I don't need an on-screen explaination of what aperture priority is when I select it! ISO was all over the place, with Auto ISO enabled in aperture priority but not shutter priority. I was also puzzled by the apparent lack of LSF JPEGs, with LF being the best available; it was only later that I recalled having to enable LSF in the menues on a previous Olympus camera that I bought new. Grrrrr!

Nevertheless, my time with the E-M1 left me with a very favourable opinion. I don't need one (my E-M5 is more than adequate for my requirements) but I sure do want one! :D

14th September 2013, 05:56 AM
I don't need one (my E-M5 is more than adequate for my requirements) but I sure do want one! :D

I think that's the conclusion I'm coming to before I even try one out, inner demons becalms yourselves!

In the end I couldn't come to the event because Olympus decided to launch the OM-1 at the same time as the American Chemical Society puts on their semi-annual bash in the USA which my wife was at and I was left with the kids all week:mad:

Oh well, if we can ever register for the DG event at the loading bay hopefully I'll get my hands on one there.

Phill D
14th September 2013, 07:27 AM
I was wondering if someone was going to start a new thread for images. That's a nice record of an enjoyable day John. I definitely wont show the wife no 2 that shirt started out ironed!!! honest.
Here's a few from my memory card from a couple of the EM1s. All un processed except for slight cropping and straightening occasionally. The camera settings were all over the place and coming from an E510 I really didn't know my way around the EM1 to change much to start with so don't take these as representative of the cameras quality.
First using my 14-150 which as David Morrison has already said seemed to work pretty well with the EM1
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010004.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65587)
It was the first shot I'd taken and I just couldn't resist the look of the huge lens being rested on the floor infront of the model waiting patiently. Probably whilst the tog counted hair follicles?

Here's an iso 800 shot of Zoe
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010005.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65588)

Now switching to outside justa a few general shots.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010019.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65589)
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010038.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65590)

A few impromptu dancers across the road trying to get the passers by to have a go.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010066.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65591)

But mum I want a go too!!!
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P10100681.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65592)

On a different EM1 I was able to try out my old 4/3 70-300. This seemed to work better and more assuredly on the EM1 but still hunts as it always used to just when you don't want it to. Use of higher iso to get the shutter speeds up should be a revelation for this lens. Here's a shot at about 50 yards, 1/2000s, wide open at f4 and at 3200 iso, something I could only have dreamed about before. Wish I could say I'd noticed the caption in the shot when I took it !!!
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010132.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65594)

The 50mm f2 seemed to feel nicely at home on the EM1. This is Simon's lens and from one of the shots he was taking in John's series above.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010158.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65595)

And a few more hand held with the 50mm. This is the filter on my 70-300.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010183-001.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65596)

Jim your expression says it all I think.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P1010195.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65597)

Back inside and the girls were taking a rest to catch up socially. I think this was after Simon had been trying his blue jeans white balance experiments hence the colour.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P9120209.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65598)

And finally nearing the end of the day there was still quite a few discussion groups left.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P9120313.JPG (http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/65599)

All in all a brilliant day out and thanks again to Ian and Mark for organising it. Can't wait till the middle of October now.

14th September 2013, 09:05 AM
Hi Phill, you got some good shots despite being totally unfamiliar with the camera! I especially like the rickshaw rider and I love the humour in The Mad Hatter's Tea Club, even if you didn't spot the sign at the time. I think you are going to love your E-M1 when it arrives. Great to meet you again. :)

14th September 2013, 09:16 AM
John and Phil, with great interest I have devoured your words of experience at this launch day, as a starving orphan would a 7 course Banquet *chr

one little question you may be able to answer ... did anyone try a 'kit lens' ?

I wonder how they would perform ? given the sensor and spec of the ONE ? and the improved ability of the 70-300 :)

14th September 2013, 09:22 AM
John and Phil, with great interest I have devoured your words of experience at this launch day, as a starving orphan would a 7 course Banquet *chr

one little question you may be able to answer ... did anyone try a 'kit lens' ?

I wonder how they would perform ? given the sensor and spec of the ONE ? and the improved ability of the 70-300 :)

Thanks Chevvy, hopefully someone will be able to add some shots taken with a kit lens. I grabbed the chance to use some lenses that I don't own! :D

Ross the fiddler
14th September 2013, 02:36 PM
Thanks John & Phil for feedback & photos. I don't need it, but I can't deny I want it. Actually, I do need it! *yes ;)