For the past year I've toyed with the idea of buying a secondary camera, and no this doesn't mean I'm going to bin my Nikon off, it's just something I want that's ideal for general, street and the occasional event photography where the bulk of my Nikon gear is just over the top.
Going back a few years ago I purchased a Samsung Galaxy Camera 2, I'm still not sure why I did, maybe it was to be that convenient camera to shove in my pocket on trips to London and take 'snap' or 'reference' shots on the occasions I did not fancy lugging my Nikon gear about. Sadly the Samsung, a clone of the Galaxy S4 phone but with no phone and instead it has camera bolted on the front, did not have the image quality I was expecting. It wasn't terrible and far better than an iPhone, but it only shot in JPG and whilst it offered a multitude of fancy shoot options, types and scenarios, this was not the camera for me and the interest in this camera died almost instantly. So I put the idea of a second camera on a back burner for another year.
There is also one more thing I need to point out for those who maybe thinking about my statement on quality. I know that the Micro Four Thirds system is never going to live up to a full frame camera counterpart, due to its smaller sensor, but the reviews this system gets are somewhat outstanding. I've also read of so many professionals selling there gear for the Micro Four Thirds system. Let's not forget the most important part that's always overlooked because there is only one thing that is always on a first time buyers mind, and that being how many megapixels does it have! This is the main selling point used by shops and in my opinion is so wrong. Whilst megapixels are important, they are just one part in the equation that I can only put as this in a nutshell, if the quality of the lens is poor then no amount of megapixels or better camera will make the images great. Obviously the larger the sensor will add to this improvement in image quality, but a quality sharp lens is an essential.
I had almost thrown the idea of a second camera out of my head, until a friend showed me his Fuji camera (APS-C sensor) and he raved about it's quality and convenient size. This prompted another trip to London, dozens and dozens of YouTube videos as well as camera comparisons sites on various makes, I finally narrowed it down to the Fuji GX7. I wanted to try the GX7 camera hands on so I found a London shop that had one in stock and gave it a quick spin. I was just about to make a purchase when I noticed the delightfully looking Olympus OMD EM10. It handled and looked better than the GX7, but any photographer knows that looks and feel are not everything... I say that with a smile as it was this exact thing I originally chose Nikon over Canon on my first DSLR! It was time I took a lunch break to ponder over more comparison sites on how these 2 cameras compared. Although the Fuji often came out strongly on 'features' - panoramas and its various types of video, the OM10 always seemed to win, if only by the slightest whisker. In fact only one comparison website rated the Fuji over the EM10. Finally the amount of lenses that were available for the OM10 was the overall factor in my decision and I secured a purchase along with a £70 money back offer Olympus were running.
So what do I think of the EM10 regardless of reviews? Well I'll be honest that it took a while to get my head around it and the supplied lens 14-42mm f3.5-5.6 was not that great and is now on eBay. Keeping the above statement, a good lens is a must have and the one everyone raved about was the 45mm f1.8 so I promptly bought one and it is indeed a great lens. Another lens I've always wanted was a macro lens, so I also purchased the 60mm f2.8 Macro. I'll save macro shooting for another future blog. For now I'm just testing the water so there will be more on the Four Thirds in future blogs once I'm accustomed to the system.
Below are a few samples of my first few weeks of photographing.