Today I headed to the Seven Sister's country park to spend a few hours playing with Olympus OMD E-M1 WIFI features. As the day was more about testing I left my prime lenses in the bag and opted for the 12-50 kit lens and 14-150 zoom lens. With light cloud cover when I arrived and hail stones by the time I left the Olympus weather sealing certainly had a good test.
After enjoying the countryside as I walked towards the beach, it was time to set-up. Throughout the testing I was having to shoot between f/18 & f/22 to gain sufficent exposure times. Whilst diffraction is a concern shooting at high aperture settings, the combination of shooting at midday and only having the Hoya ND variable density filter with me my options were limited. What the day did re-confirm to me is that you have to be aware of the limitations using a variable density filter when pushing it to it's upper limit. It is time for me to invest in a set of standard ND filters!. After changing the aspect ratio to 16:9, I set the ISO to 100 dialled in live time and I was ready to start having some fun. The image to the right, controlling the E-M1 from my iPhone.
Whilst capturing the image below a Chinese couple stopped to talk to me to see what I was doing (Nikon DSLR round their neck). As they watched the image build on my iPhone screen, I hit the shutter release on the App and the gentlemen looked at the result. he said "I want smoky water, that must be some kind of special camera". The whole experience was effortless, minimising the risk of camera shake and being able to hold the iPhone away from the harsh sunlight. Eventually it would be great to see more of the controls from the OM-D built into the app but personally stability is more important than functions and it is certainly stable.
The images below were captured as I walked to and from the beach. Regardless of my choice of equipment, with so much natural beauty all around me it was a wonderful way to spend a few hours on a Sunday. The E-M5 still holds a special place in my heart and is still my camera of choice for certain genre's. But when you shoot side by side with the E-M1 the technical advances really make a difference. The most important of these to me is the 1/8000sec shutter speed, built in WIFI and improved EVF. The button layout and grip also quickly demonstrates that it was built for Pro's in mind. Hopefully Olympus will announce a E-M5 MKII some point in 2014 that will include some of these features.
The meandering Cuckmere river. Captured ISO100, f/10 @ 1/50
The Heart in the hill. Captured at ISO100, f/9 @ 1/80
The look out. Captured at ISO100, f/9 @ 1/80
Gazing out to sea, (My personal favourite of the day). Captured at ISO100, f/9 @ 1/500
A room with a view. Captured at ISO100, f/9 @ 1/160
Paddling on the Cuckmere Estuary after the hail storm past through. Captured at ISO100, f/11 @ 1/320
An amazing few hours shooting with both the OM-D E-M1 and E-M5, "feel very fortunate!".