Olympus OM-D EM5 Mark II Review

Standford_1

Last April I borrowed a friends Olympus EM5 MII to see if mirror-less held any sway with me for my future photography needs.  I took the camera to Stanford University grounds for a days trial.  This report is not a detailed technical review of this kit, more my experience as a 10 year DSLR only user dipping a toe into mirrorless.  If you want more technical details for this machine try here.

NiallCWhelan_20160417_85

My biggest fear was the user interface and usability of this smaller (non-Nikon) camera was going to be too high a learning curve and would take all the fun out of things.  On paper the spec compares well to my own Nikon D700 and the extra pixels in the 16MP sensor was the direction I’m heading anyway.

Since I’m traveling so much more with work, and pleasure these days, it is always a chore to lug a relatively heavy body and lens around with me, especially since on a weeks travel I’m in the habit of only carrying cabin luggage!  This kit below all weighed about half my usual kit for travel.

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That’s an iPhone 5s above, this bag was also great to carry the kit as well as water and snacks for the day with room to spare.

Usability:

OK, lots of nobs and buttons and menus… overload.  Switch to Manual.  Problem solved.  Just work as normal, used viewfinder info for F Stops and Exposure readings… take pictures!  It’s in auto-ISO, I can deal with that later.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

So like many Irish people, a lot of our travel involves finding the sun, so I guess if I’m going to buy a travel camera it better handle dynamic range well.  I was pleasantly surprised at the quality and handling of high contrast images above.  If the dark areas were too dark, pulling them back in Lightroom was not a problem and noise was not noticeable.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I didn’t get much time to try other types of shots, portraits, seascapes etc.  The main objective of this test was usability and travel shots.  I’ll keep you posted on what this camera has done to my photographic progress shortly…