A couple of week earlier than formally unveiling the E-M1 Mark III, Olympus invited a small group of journalists to test-drive its newest toy on a subject journey to Costa Rica. Regardless of my reluctance to go away the chilly New York winter behind, I made a decision to courageous the tropical climate and crystalline waters to offer the digicam a rundown under launch. We go into extra element in our announcement publish; what follows are my first impressions after utilizing the digicam for just a few days.

Disclaimer: Olympus paid for journey and lodging for this journey. Regardless of this, the corporate had no say within the contents of this text, and it’s my purpose to stay as goal as attainable.

Nonetheless, I can’t say I’m completely unbiased; I just about began my journey as a photographer on Micro 4 Thirds, and have been capturing on Olympus our bodies for almost a decade. The E-M1 MKIII is a good reminder of each how far Olympus‘ efficiency has come – and the way I want it might attain a bit additional.

It was straightforward sufficient to get my bearings across the Mark III as soon as I acquired my arms on it, although there are just a few adjustments that may make these upgrading from the Mark II do a double-take. The addition of a joystick for setting your AF goal is the obvious one, additionally permitting the digicam to switch the earlier AF goal button with a devoted ISO button.

A number of different buttons have moved round too, but it surely shouldn’t take quite a lot of minutes for Olympus customers to get acclimated.

The E-M1’s menus are additionally as dense as ever, making the digicam extraordinarily customizable – almost each button, knob, or dial might be reconfigured – on the expense of some simplicity. It’s a trade-off I’m blissful to take although; my most well-liked settings and management configurations are fairly completely different from Olympus‘ defaults, so I respect the power to customise the digicam to work for my explicit capturing fashion.

The customizability makes for a digicam on which almost each characteristic you might need is a button-press away, whereas I discover the ergonomics hit the candy spot between dealing with and portability. The chunky grip was appreciated when utilizing bigger lenses just like the 40-150mm F4, however with out being so cumbersome because the E-M1X (not to mention conventional DSLRs).

Total, the physique is a case of “if it ain’t broke, don’t repair it,” however I actually want Olympus had gone with a brand new viewfinder and touchscreen. They do the job – particularly with the viewfinder set to its excessive refresh fee mode – however the competitors has moved forward.

It’s an analogous story with autofocus efficiency, lengthy a double-edged sword for mirrorless cameras. Whereas Olympus has at all times provided among the quickest and most correct focusing within the enterprise, it’s autofocus monitoring has largely been a weak spot.

Unsurprisingly, the digicam‘s “Steady Autofocus + Monitoring” mode was one of many first issues I attempted after I acquired the E-M1 MKIII. That is the autofocus mode that follows objects inside a body slightly than the extra conventional one requiring you to intention the digicam at your object of curiosity.