After I sold all my DSLR camera bodies and lenses a few years ago, the photographer in me has been secretly looking at latest models from Nikon, Canon and even Olympus because of their high performance Zuiko lenses. The reason I remained on the sidelines is that I want a camera that is light, versatile and mobile. Something that I will carry with me all the time. If you have been reading the features on GrateNews, you will realise that I have been mostly shooting using my smartphones, opting for portability over quality. Well, that was before I laid eyes on the latest Olympus Pen-F.
The new Olympus PEN-F interchangeable-lens camera is a digital beast in a retro outfit. I don’t know about you but there is something extremely sexy about a camera when it goes old school with its dials and knobs. The concept of the Pen-F is inspired by an old Olympus line of film cameras produced from the 1960s and the build quality of the reboot model is simply exquisite. Comparing this camera to a Leica wouldn’t be fair, but I think Olympus did well to fuse aesthetics and digital power.
Beating inside this camera is a 20.1-megapixel micro four thirds sensor, capable of shooting excellent high-res images. A multi-shot mode allows you to push the resolution up to 50-megapixel in JPEG. It also has a dedicated creative control knob on the front, allowing you to switch quickly between customisable shooting modes with features like monochrome settings, colour profile controls and various art filters.
The Olympus PEN-F has a rear LCD touchscreen LCD panel as well as a high-resolution built-in 2.36-million dot OLED electronic viewfinder for you to see what you are shooting. And like previous Olympus models, the PEN-F comes with Olympus’ 5-Axis image stabilisation system to save your shots from unsteady hands. You may not realise it but this feature is extremely useful for low-light conditions and when shooting videos as well.
The Olympus PEN-F will go on sale March 2016 and is available in Silver and Black. But be prepared to fork out USD$1,200 for the dials and all that jazz. Time for me to save up.
Olympus PEN-F features
20-megapixel Live MOS Four Thirds format sensor
5-axis image stabilization with automatic panning detection
2.36 million dot OLED electronic viewfinder
Up to 10 fps continuous shooting
Highly customizable interface, twin controls
Swivel 3.0 inch Touchscreen LCD with 1.04 million dot
50MP High-res Shot mode
1/8000 sec shutter speed (1/16,000 with e-shutter)
Full-HD movie with 5-axis IS stability
High-res Shot captures 50MP JPEG or 80MP RAW shots
Built-in Wi-Fi when coupled with OI.Share app for smart devices (iOS & Android) enables camera remote control; image and video transfer for social sharing