No, Micro Four-Thirds (MFT) is not dead! I feel like at least once a year I have to write this down. I’m often asked, “MFT cameras can’t keep up with a full-frame like Sony, why bother?” To be fair, 5 years ago that question had Canon instead of Sony in it so I guess Sony should’ve stopped making cameras then. In either case, it’s a really ill-informed question equating sensor size as the only determining factor in what makes a good camera or worse, a good image.
I recently was loaned an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III and have been using it for a little over 2 weeks now. In that time, I was reminded about my love of the small, Micro Four-Thirds camera bodies (I’ve been shooting Medium Format film and a Fujifilm X-Pro 1 exclusively for about a year and a half). I’ve forgotten how great it is having a camera that’s easy to carry and doesn’t attract too much attention when shooting street or concerts.
While the E-M10’s small form factor is a nice plus, its flexibility to work well for snapshots and actual photographic work makes this one the more slept on cameras available now. The E-M10’s spec sheet puts it on par with most mid-range cameras like the Canon T7i, Sony a6000, Nikon D5600 or the Panasonic GX85. Unlike the APS-C cameras listed before, the E-M10 offers WiFi connectivity and 4K video at 24 and 30 frames per second. To sweeten the deal, the Micro Four-Thirds format boasts a wealth of lens options (trust me, you’ll want to get rid of the power zoom kit lens), many at very affordable price points.
The Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mk. III at a Glance
• 16-Megapixel Micro Four-Thirds CMOS sensor without Anti-Aliasing Filter
• TruePic VIII processor
• 121-point Contrast Detect Auto Focusing System
• In-body 5-axis image stabilization
• 8.6 fps high/ 4.8 fps low continuous shooting
• 2.36M dot Electronic Viewfinder
• 4k Video at 24 and 30 fps | Nighttime Live Composite | 15 Art Filters
Who is this for?
If you’re looking to get into photography, want something better than your phone’s camera, or are looking for a second, smaller camera for travel, the E-M10 III absolutely fits the bill. This camera offers beginners a guided tour into the world of photography thanks to its Advanced Photo options, Art Filters, while still allowing for full manual controls once you’ve gotten tired of shooting in Auto (or Program) and are ready to push the camera’s limits. Sadly, this isn’t the perfect camera for everyone; despite the 4K video option, the E-M10 III omits a mic-in jack which keeps this from being the perfect vlogging camera.
Still, if you’re primarily interested in stills, the E-M10 III offers a fine balance of ease of use and portability with a high enough ceiling for a budding creative like yourself.