Olympus OM-1 Hands On Roundup Olympus OM-1: What You Need to Know

Yesterday OM Digital Solutions (or OMDS), the new Olympus brand, introduced the high-end micro four-thirds OM-1 – a 20MP flagship mirrorless camera with advanced weather sealings, ultra-fast shooting capabilities, and several other improvements.

After JIP purchased the imaging division of Olympus last year it was not clear what will be the new direction the company will take with the brand that existed for decades. Today the company showed that it has plans to continue pushing advanced cameras and lenses with the introduction of the OM-1 and two new PRO lenses.

OM-1 IP53  sealing


Olympus OM-1 – a new flagship

The original analog OM-1 was first shown in Photokina back in the early 1970s and became an immediate success. Half a century later and an all-new digital OM-1 appears but this time not from Olympus (despite the name on the camera) but the camera certainly is part of the company’s heritage despite the new ownership.

The OM-1 that was announced yesterday doesn’t bring in any groundbreaking innovations but it does incorporate several advanced technologies including a new type of quad pixel sensor with stacked technology – a first for micro 4/3 cameras.

This new sensor which has the same 20MP resolution as that of many of Olympus’ previous high-end cameras promises low blackout EVF and a much reduced rolling shutter based on faster readout speed alongside a new processor.

The camera is extremely fast, capable of shooting up to 50fps in stills with one of six PRO Olympus lenses or up to 25fps with other micro 4/3 lenses (all with AF).

It has a much improved OLED 5.76 million dot EVF and 1.62 million dot articulated touch LCD. The company improved the already great image stabilization (now up to 7 stops or 8 with specific lenses), the build-in virtual ND can go up to 6 stops and the video capabilities improved considerably as well.

You can now shoot up to 4K 60p or 1080p up to 240p in 10bit 4:2:2 and even output to an external monitor in ProRes RAW up to 5.2K.

Olympus OM-1 Specs

Here are some of the main specs of the new Olympus OM-1:

  • Sensor: 20.4MP Stacked CMOS Micro 4/3 quad-pixel sensor.
  • Processor: TruePic X mage Processors.
  • AF system: 1053 -Point AF system.
  • Battery: BLX-1 lithium-ion (520 shots per charge).
  • Memory cards: Dual SD (UHS-II).
  • Viewfinder: 5.76m-Dot 0.83x magnification.
  • Monitor: 3.0″ 1.62m-Dot Vari-Angle Touchscreen.
  • Video: DCI 4K/60p, 10bit 4.2.2
  • Stabilization: 5-Axis Sensor-Shift Image Stabilization (up to 7.5 stops with some lenses).
  • Shooting speed: 50 frames per second (with specific PRO lenses or 25fps with
  • Weather-Sealed: IP53 rating.

New pro lenses

OMDS also announced two pro zoom lenses alongside the OM-1. These are the ED 12-40mm F2.8 PRO II and the 40-150mm F4 PRO lenses.

M.Zuiko Digital ED 12–40mm F2.8 PRO II – This zoom lens has a similar angle of view to a 24-80mm lens on a 35mm sensor. It is an updated version of the original lens Olympus announced back in 2013. While the optical formula is the same, it adds improved sealing (IP53) adds fluorine coating to keep water and dirt off the front element as well as ZERO coating for reduced ghosting. The lens is extremely light at 382g (13oz).

M.Zuiko Digital ED 12–40mm F2.8 PRO II

M.Zuiko Digital ED 40–150mm F4.0 PRO – This le s is a completely new design with 15 elements in 9 groups (it has a 80-300mm equivalent angle in 35mm). It has a min focus distance of 70cm and surprisingly weighs the same as the 12-40mm F2.8 at 382g.

M.Zuiko Digital ED 40–150mm F4.0 PRO

Pricing and availability

The Olympus OM-1 will be available in March 2022 for $2200. The M.Zuiko Digital ED 12–40mm F2.8 PRO II will start selling around the same time for $1000 and the M.Zuiko Digital ED 40–150mm F4.0 PRO for $900.

Olympus OM-1 Review roundup from around the web

Several early reviews of the OM-1 were already published online and we bring them for your viewing pleasure:

Chris Nicholls and Jordan Drake from DPR with the OM-1

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Gordon Laing review of the OM-1

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 Gavin Hoey playing with the OM-1

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Iddo Genuth
Iddo Genuth is the founder and chief editor of LensVid.com. He has been a technology reporter working for international publications since the late 1990's and covering photography since 2009. Iddo is also a co-founder of a production company specializing in commercial food and product visual content.

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