Olympus PEN and OM-D Accessories
On these pages I will discuss standard options available for these cameras. For example often one read the question, but what lens should I use? I added a tab only for possible lens selections and what lenses do I personally prefer on the MFT cameras. I did the same for bags or tripods, all relevant topics people buying these cameras are interested in plus want to read more about. The section is still under development so please be patient and visit regular while I add more information…..
I was looking for another user grip alternative I saw few weeks ago when I came across this sample. This is one of the best aftermarket samples I saw to date, not only great looking but also extremely functional. See the link for more information:- Link
More ideas on adding a Grip
There are more guys doing their own thing in terms of creative designing & practical Grip units for the E-M5. Go see this discussion for more interesting ideas:- Link
I never liked the standard Olympus shoulder belt supplied with the PEN series, they are just to hard and inflexible. My E-M5 was supplied with the same belt I had with my PEN series. Later I was fortunate to have the Olympus soft leather shoulder belt included in the deal when buying a second camera for test purposes . As accessory these leather belts are expensive. The disadvantage with the leather shoulder belt is that they really a lot of belt to manage when not over the shoulder. I therefor started searching for a better way to use the Olympus leather shoulder belt.
The solution was clear to me when I came across a old Lowepro SLR shoulder belt I bought many years ago. I removed the clips from the Lowepro and fitted them to my Olympus soft leather shoulder belt and I fitted the Lowepro leather pieces plus rings onto the E-M5.
From there on it has been an absolute pleasure to have the freedom using the shoulder belt when I wanted too, or alternatively to use my wrist strap which are permanently fitted to the E-M5. When using the E-M5 without add-on grip, its great to use the E-M5 without shoulder belt as well, especially when fitting a smaller sized lens like the 14 mm Lumix pancake.
E-M5 own extended grip option
By far the E-M5 is thee most exciting camera I ever used. In terms of a system camera it is really well thought through and it offers the photographer an unbeatable package in terms of a system. Just to take one really simple example, the grip assembly of the E-M5.
Not only is it a highly complex piece of equipment, ready to electrically connect with the E-M5, it will house an additional battery, it has a number of control buttons and adjustments wheels and depends on what you decide to fit it will automatically adapt with the E-M5 to become a unique solution.
On the right I have only the E-M5 fitted with the 14mm lens. In this form factor the E-M5 is like a compact camera, takes up very little space and delivery SLR plus quality……
On the left you see I have the 35mm Macro from Olympus fitted to the E-M5. To better handle the camera in this configuration I added the basic grip part to the E-M5. Immediately the E-M5 becomes a new and completely different camera to the one above.
Fitted with a "better" placed shutter button the grip part adds an improved user experience to the E-M5. I do remove this part depending on my needs but has to admit, often I think to just go get use to the added size of the camera with the bassic grip fitted.
In the image to the left you can see the complete grip are added to the E-M5. You will also see I added the 14 - 54MKII four thirds lens to the E-M5. Its a wonderful combination to work with plus the complete grip part lets you believe you have a studio camera in your hands.
Add your remote flash trigger to your E-M5 flash slot and you ready for a full blown studio shoot. What makes this even better is the fact that the E-M5 holds up with the best out there in terms of image quality……
You only need to do a search for Gariz bags to see many sites talking about or offering these awesome looking pouches for the E-M5……. If you have a closer look at the bottom of the camera you will see one can replace the battery without removing the pouch, that is really something…..
Different Camera Bag Options
In this small section I will show you three bag options I personally use with my M43 cameras. These are only examples. I will not be surprised if some of you use really interesting ways of carrying your camera plus lenses. I basically have three camera bag options, a walkabout option, something little bigger with more than one lens and finally something that will hold more than one body plus a Laptop if needed. With each of these options I always keep a spare battery, spare memory cards and my shoulder strap.
Both the top and the bottom are small shoulder type bags. They were both available in the Olympus Accessories Catalogue over here in Europe. The above one is a real winner I found. It has enough space for the kit displayed plus I often add my external microphone for video work, the original M43 flash or the newer baby flash will also fit well. I would say the above bag can be used for a more serious outing.
The bag below is smaller than the one above and are therefore limited in space. It is still OK for fitting 2 lenses but my experience is I prefer taking something like my 14 - 150mm in this bag and then use the little spare capacity to carry my money holder or whatever important stuff I might need with me.
The below two images show my "large" camera bag and the other a really comfortable "compact" style bag. What I find so unique with the E-M5 is its ability to adapt into any style of photography. On the one hand it is a studio camera, next it is ready to mount large and heavy pro-grade FT lenses and the next moment it is ready again to function as I compact with a high quality fixed length, lens option. No other camera are this flexible I think.
I use my large bag approximately 20% of the time I require a bag. Typically I will be traveling with my 7D plus E-M5 or with 2 MFT bodies and a number of lenses. Because these MFT lenses are so small you will be surprised at how many lenses I fit in the bottom part. What I really like about this bag is the top front holder or part. One can fit nearly anything in there making this one of the best multipurpose bags.
You might ask but why the 7D if you use MFT? The reason is simple. Many people believe that only large bulky cameras like a 5D or the 7D can take good "pictures". I like my 7D and think it is a great camera. The truth be told, I mostly take it with for show, people feel comfortable when they see the photographer uses a huge camera body;-)
Lensbaby is something new to me also. I literally stumbled over a few bits and pieces at a garage type sale. On offer were the Tilt Shift type Composer together with a few other unique lens bits, all at a give-away price. From there on I sourced a few items myself while continuously exercising and further experimenting with the system.
On the picture to the right you will see I have the Tilt Shift Composer fitted to the E-PL1. Reason is it does not match the E-M5, the EVF housing is in the way and one can therefor not fit this lens to the E-M5. It does work perfectly well on the PEN cameras, the only recommendation is to use the EVF when using Lensbaby. The EVF helps the photographer to better manually focus plus it is critical when composing the image.
I ended up selling the E-PL1 and replaced it with the E-PL2 which is by far the better of the two in all aspects. I am looking forward to continue developing my skills on the Lensbaby way of photography…..
This paragraph was mainly written for the 50 plus group out there, those who recall using the different types of Cokin filters to get the many effects home and family photographers did….. May you use a filter on your fancy digital camera? The answer is a BIG yes, the same rules apply and the same effects can be created as you did in the golden years. Especially those who like to do more with video will need to take a good look at a good filter option for his or hers camera.
If you are on of those who does not really like to get into Photoshop, the E-M5 or Pen cameras are most probably the ultimate in terms of creativity. Add to that a bunch of filters most of us older guys might still have at home and you never have to fire up Photoshop…..
These older filters are easy to get hold of today and still great fun to use. As was the case with 35mm film digital photographers can be very creative using the camera with filters only. Yes it is great to be able to work with Photoshop but creative images is not only dependent on Photoshop only….
One of the few frustrations on this great lens are the fact that one cannot add any filters to it. I came across a user who did think of a plan. It is one of those great ideas when you see it you cannot help saying….but why did I not think of it!!
See the link for more information:- Link
I do almost all of my camera plus camera equipment images in a small home studio. In fact its exactly the same looking mini studio you see in the image to the left. I do not use the lights or the camera support as it is really crappy quality. I use the remote flash units, the FL500 and the FL36 when doing equipment shoots.
It takes a little practice to get use to the studio or working with one like this but the rewards are high in terms of satisfaction. Knowing Photoshop is required when start doing this type of photography I think, it just opens up so much more creative options…..