Photography News issue 25

39 Camera test

Photography News Issue 25 absolutephoto.com

Art filters If you have the time, skill and inclination, all sorts of effects can be applied in post-processing. Olympus has been a leader in offering creative effects in-camera and it has probably the best selection currently available. Fourteen effects are on offer and you can even set an art filter bracket so you get all (or as many as you choose) of themwith one push of the shutter button. It’s JPEG only so the consequences on card capacity are not too severe and the in-camera processing is quite speedy.

Grainy film

Construction 8 elements in 7 groups. (1 Super HR element, 1 ED lens, three aspherical lenses) Minimumfocus 20cm at widest setting, 25cm at longest Aperture range f/3.5 (14mm), f/5.6 (42mm) to f/22 Diaphragm Five blades Filter size 37mm Dimensions (wxhxd) 60.6x22.5mm Weight 93g The E-M10 Mark II is available in different lens packages or body only. Supplied for review was the M.ZUIKO Digital 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 EZ ED MSC. This is a neat little lens and it protrudes around 22mm from the body so it is does make for a very compact combination. It’ll slide into a decent-sized jacket pocket. Turn the camera on and the lens automatically glides into its working position and sticks out 46mm from the body. The broader inner barrel adjusts the zoom setting. This is motorised and you can zoom quickly or slowly depending on how you operate the zoom barrel – a quick twist gives the fastest zoom action. Even zooming slowly, you can miss the setting you want. The smooth thinner, outer barrel looks after manual focusing and this is good to use. The action and the grip means fingertip control is easily possible. For filter users there is a 37mm thread and this doesn’t rotate during focusing. Lens performance is good. Given its price (£269) and its design philosophy (size comes first) that is probably no surprise. It’s not a poor performer though. Used a couple of stops down and you can get excellent pictures and it is better than many so-called kit lenses. At the wider setting, sharpness is good from the maximum aperture onwards. M.ZUIKODigital 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 EZ ED Specs

No filter

Pop art

Pinhole

Olympus has been a leader in offering creative filters in-camera and it has probably the best selection available

Dramatic tone

Cross process

Verdict Entry-level models can be disappointing whether it’s a car, TV or camera. With fewer features, a cheaper feel and less performance. So it is a real delight to report that Olympus’s budget OM-D is feature-rich, feels great and delivers first- rate pictures. For the money, it’s a bargain and anyone who buys one is unlikely to feel an urgent need to upgrade, which can happen when you buy a basic entry-level product. For me, price and high level of performance apart, I really appreciated the design changes. There is nothing seriously wrong at all with the original E-M10 and it is a perfectly sound camera but the two big knurled input dials and the repositioned on/off switch make handling a real pleasure. Negatives? At this price, I’d have to get serious nit-picky to highlight any detractions and even so I am struggling to come up with any, and at this price I don’t expect weather-proofing and a swivel monitor. The E-M10 Mark II is rich in features so whether you are a photographic newcomer or a seasoned veteran, there is plenty to explore and enjoy. Also, for £649 with the 14-42mm EZ lens (a lens that on its own costs £269) this camera is also compellingly good value.

How it rates

25/25

Features An extensive and impressive features list for the money Performance AF is swift and responsive, exposures consistently accurate Handling Easy to get used to and generally good, especially the two input dials Value for money A big bang for your buck so rates very highly Overall Potentially another winner fromOlympus Pros Long features list, great price, smart looks, handling Cons Extensive menus

24/25

24/25

24/25

97/100

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