I have had an interest in photography since I was at school and began to develop and print my own black and white photos. Over the years I have owned and used a number of cameras, my favorites however were ‘a design classic’ and having now sold them I miss them!
I am referring to the Olympus OM series of 35mm cameras.
I was lucky enough to be a student at a time when we actually received a grant from the Government. Somehow (despite living in the bar) I managed to save enough in my first year to buy an Olympus OM1n – my love affair had started.
The OM1 was small but perfectly formed, very solid but capable of fitting in your pocket with a small standard lens. Over a period of years I built up a full range of lens’ from wide to telephoto and a large amount of the flash system – the first to accurately meter through the lens – fantastically accurate exposures.
Later I added two further bodies;
An OM2sp which allowed me to make maximum use of the flash system and was as small as the OM1.
An OM3 – a camera that todays point and shoot photographers would not understand. This was a fully manual camera but with massive capability to override exposures. I loved this camera and it was the only one that could replace the OM1 fully.
Subsequently I made the decision to go digital and sold my 35mm kit – frankly a big mistake as my Olympus digital SLR is not a patch on my OM system cameras. However that was a few years ago and things appear to be improving in the digital world.
I moved to the new micro four thirds system – the Olympus Pen (E-P1) in 2009 and haven’t looked back.
It’s small form is very reminiscent of my OM1, and it’s build quality is excellent, a pocketable camera again?
Results are very good, it’s ability to produce good quality results in poor light is also very impressive.
I didn’t think that I would find something to replace an SLR, but I am very happy with the Pen. Image quality and size being the biggest thing.
I have used the Pen for a couple of years now and love it, the results are amazing and it is so small! I can take a full kit of camera body, two zooms and a prime lens, plus a flash gun in a bag half the size of my old DSLR case (which just held the camera and one lens!) But it had to happen – there is a new kid on the block, and OM-D EM-5, purchased in late 2012 this is a camera so reminiscent of the old OM1 that it makes me very happy! It also takes amazing quality photos and is solid as a rock! It wasn’t cheap, but it is a thing of quality and beauty!
Hopefully this will see me on my way to building a full Micro 4/3rds system with good quality prime lenses for years of happy photography!