I recently had a decision to make. For the last 10 years or more, I have been using Nikon DSLR’s. Not the smallest or lightest of cameras, especially when paired with my Sigma 50-500mm lens. The thing is though, when working for Powerboat GP, this lens is the most versatile piece of kit I’ve ever owned. It’s well priced, and has a range which makes it suitable for close-up shots in the powerboat pits and then the action shots when the boats are out on the lake and I’m stood on the bank. It’s a set-up that works for me, and I can’t see myself giving up on it in the near future.
It’s not exactly easily portable though. Sometimes I want to be able to go out, grab my camera as I run out of the door and know that I’ve got kit with me that will produce the results I need without breaking my back. So I started looking at Compact Systems. The market is awash with mirrorless cameras at the moment, and each manufacturer has their own USP’s and little quirks. I’ll be honest. What swayed me in my decision was nostalgia.
My first SLR, given to me by my dad when I was 10, was an Olympus OM-10. I remember my dad had a range of OM bodies in cases, and I was made up to have one like his. We would go to Oulton Park in Cheshire to watch club motor racing, and I have memories of sitting on a fallen tree at Deer Leap, watching the cars come out of Old Hall, blast past us through the dip, then up the rise to the start finish straight. After the OM-10, I was then given an OM-4Ti. Even at such a young age (probably about 15 I think) I found that this was such a lovely camera to use.
When Olympus launched the OM-D range a few years ago I was intrigued. Mirrorless cameras were relatively new to the market and I didn’t know much about them. Now things have changed. There is a firm place in the world for a small-bodied, SLR style camera and their appeal has been steadily rising. And there are some good deals out there now, so I took the plunge. The Internet is a wealth of information, and when it comes to technology I’ve always found that quality reviews are easy to come by. When a review by a respected tech publication says a product “ticks boxes you probably didn’t even know about“, then it’s probably worth a shot. So I bought an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II.
I’ve only had it 2 days, so this is by no means a review. This is simply a post to say thank you to Olympus for creating something that both keeps up with current requirements and takes me straight back to my early days of photography every time I pick it up. Will it replace my Nikon kit? Almost certainly not. Will it go with me to places the Nikon doesn’t? Almost certainly .