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Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II Announced

Olympus has announced the E-M5 Mark II, with enhanced 5 axis image stabilisation.

|  Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II in Mirrorless Cameras
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Olympus has announced the OM-D E-M5 Mark II, a successor to the original E-M5

Olympus say the OM-D E-M5 Mark II now has the world's most powerful image stabilisation, building on the technology used on the original E-M5. 

With a compact design and dust, splash and freezeproof construction, Olympus say the camera is also ideal for the demanding filmmaker to capture hand-held movies outdoors, blur and noise free with 1080 Full HD 60p Olympus Movie Mode.

The camera features a 16 megapixel live MOS sensor, and also has the capability to create 40 megapixel composite shots, capturing stunning detail. 

There is built-in Wi-Fi for remote shooting and sharing images online, as well as extremely fast AF. 

The OM-D E-M5 Mark II body will be available in late February 2015 in silver or black. The body alone will cost £899.99. The E-M5 Mark II will also be available with the M.ZUIKO ED 12-50mm f/3.5-6.3 EZ in black for £1099.99 or the new M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 14-150mm f/4.0-5.6 II lens that offers the flexibility of wide angle and 10.7x tele shots for £1249.99. All three kits contain a battery and charger, as well as an attachable, dust- and splash-proof FL-LM3 flash that’s capable of bounce shooting. 

Read our Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II Hands-On Review

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Key features:

  • 16mp Micro Four Thirds sensor
  • 40mp high-resolution multi-shot mode
  • 5-axis IS (sensor shift), 5-stop according to CIPA standard
  • 3inch Vari-angle touch screen (1040k dots, same as EM1)
  • High Resolution electronic viewfinder (EVF)
  • Improved FullHD Video, 1080p, 60/50/30/25/24p
  • 1/8000s mechanical shutter speed, electronic available
  • 10fps continuous shooting, 5fps with continuous AF
  • Wi-Fi built in – works with O.I. Share
  • New bundled flash, higher plus bounce and turns
  • Microphone socket
  • Headphone socket (with 1st part of 2 part grip)
  • 750 shot battery life (battery life is 310 shots under CIPA test modes, or 750 with "Quick Sleep Mode ON")

Olympus also has a Special pre-order offer for UK and Ireland residents only: Customers who order the E-M5 Mk II before March 1 2015 can benefit from a five and half year warranty worth £100 plus a messenger bag worth £130. For further information on this offer take a look at the Olympus promotions page.

For more information, have a look at our hands-on review, or take a look at the Olympus website

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From Olympus: 

Main features:      

  • 16-Megapixel LIVE MOS sensor and TruePic VII image processor for stunning, high-resolution picture quality in low-light conditions
  • Extremely quick Fast AF for virtually instant focusing and unobtrusive shooting of street portraits and fast-moving subjects in the natural world
  • Built-in WiFi for remote control shooting (aperture, shutter speed and Live Bulb) and sharing via a smartphone with OI Share software

Zero blur

When you hold the E-M5 Mark II in your hand, the magnesium alloy housing feels reassuringly solid and stable, even though it’s a relative lightweight compared to D-SLR cameras (417g body only). In fact, the Mark II has a justifiable claim to be the world’s most stable camera – because it features the world’s most powerful* 5-axis Image Stabilisation system. The new, evolved version of this extraordinary Olympus technology eliminates camera-shake in all five planes of movement, achieving the equivalent of 5 EV steps faster shutter speed. Plus, it’s built into the body of the camera, so it works with any lens. Even in low-light conditions and with a telephoto lens magnifying the effect of hand-tremor, 5-axis IS ensures the E-M5 shoots blur-free. That goes for video and stills, both of which exceed the image quality of heavier and bulkier D-SLR rivals.

Ideal size

Another advantage of Olympus’ 5-axis IS is travelling light. One of the beauties of the mirrorless Micro Four Thirds format is the reduced overall size and weight of the camera, especially compared to the plastic-coated bulk of most D-SLRs. By essentially taking blur out of the equation, 5-axis IS puts the new E-M5 even further ahead of its rivals because you can capture pin-sharp images and videos without the use of a heavy tripod or gyro rig. The whole E-M5 system is designed for minimum weight and size, and maximum portability. Hence the dust-, splash- and freeze-resistant weatherproofing of the magnesium casing. Olympus engineers always intended this camera to be used out in the field where unobtrusive equipment makes it much easier to shoot without disturbing jumpy subjects.

Outstanding video

By dispensing with the need for weighty stabilising equipment, the world-class IS system in the E-M5 Mark II gives budding filmmakers the green light to create cinematic video footage that easily holds its own next to the pristine still images that are the hallmark of the OM-D series. In OM-D Movie Mode, the Mark II records at high bitrates up to 77 Mbps, and offers a wide variety of 1080 Full HD formats to match your frame rate of choice – 60p, 50p, 30p, 25p or the classic 24p preferred by many narrative filmmakers. Focusing during video capture is straightforward, via a 3-inch touch-sensitive, vari-angle LCD screen.

Clear view

When you’re shooting from awkward angles, this 1.04 million-dot vari-angle display can swivel and tilt to ensure a bright and clear view of any scene. Equally advantageous is the large, bright, 2.36 million-dot Electronic Viewfinder that automatically switches on when it detects your eye. It reveals a clearly laid-out menu of key settings than can be adjusted before you release the shutter.

40 Megapixel stills

Another advantage of Olympus’ ultra-precise 5-axis stabilisation system is the potential to capture extremely high-resolution still images that exceed the normal capacity of its 16-Megapixel LIVE MOS sensor. By moving the sensor between each shot and merging eight single exposures into one, the E-M5 Mark II delivers a 40-Megapixel image with breathtaking levels of detail and radiance. Little wonder OM-D is known for the best images Olympus cameras have ever created. Another key component in this spectacular visual performance is the processing engine. The Mark II now uses the same TruePic VII processor as the top-of-the-range OM-D E-M1.

Ergonomic layout

The new OM-D E-M5 Mark II proves that Olympus has understood what some camera manufacturers in this segment fail to appreciate – that for most photography enthusiasts, world-beating technology only makes a difference if it comes with intelligently laid-out controls that simplify access to the vast array of options. That means attention to design details, both large and small. For instance, the Fn buttons on the top of the newest OM-D and the function dial that protrudes slightly higher than usual. Both are now easier to operate instinctively at high speed. Equally arresting is the sheer speed of the autofocus – another trademark OM-D strength. It boasts an 81-point area, excellent low-light performance and tracking AF.

Spectacular effects and features

Although remarkably small and easy to handle, the E-M5 Mark II is packed with clever options that urge you to let your creativity off the leash. Live Composite, which combines several images in the camera, is ideal for passage-of-time shots that trace the movement of bright objects such as stars, fireworks or handheld light-painting devices. Alternatively, shoot burst sequences at 10fps and take advantage of a 1/16000 shutter speed. In-camera keystone compensation allows for correcting converging verticals in Live View, without the need for a shift lens or post-processing. With a host of art filters, you can add a layer of special effects while built-in WiFi means you can remote control the Mark II from a smartphone, then share and geotag the images on social media using Olympus OI.Share – an invaluable facility in a variety of shooting situations. These are just a few highlights from a long list of enhancements that make the next-gen E-M5 one of the most versatile and ergonomically sophisticated cameras in the category. 

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Large lens choice

The array of interchangeable lenses available is another invitation to experiment. No matter their level of photographic skill and experience, most OM-D owners see investing in a lens collection as a long-term goal. The new model is compatible with a comprehensive range of more than 40 Micro Four Thirds lenses as well as a broad range of accessories. 

Read our Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II Hands-On Review

Other Olympus announcements:
Olympus 8mm f/1.8 Fisheye PRO Lens Announced
Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II Accessories
Olympus 14-150mm II Lens Announced
Olympus OM-D E-M1 Firmware Update

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Photographs taken using the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark II

A4 Fire TulipAfter the FireSunny SplashServant's QuartersStreetThe ringing roomNuthatchDesignsBaboonLadies LibIce blueYork MinsterLoch Beinn a' Mheadhoin, Glen AffricOld Oil Can

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