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Olympus Apparently Discontinues its E-5 Four Thirds DSLR

Micro Four Thirds, Four Thirds

Olympus Zuiko 14-35mm f/2 SHG zoom lens
Olympus Zuiko 14-35mm f/2 SHG zoom lens
(for Full Four Thirds cameras)

Today the Olympus E-5 DSLR for Four Thirds went discontinued at B&H. This is not a surprise for an aging camera using the Full Four Thirds format (same sensor as Micro Four Thirds, but with deeper flange offset).

Does this mean that Olympus will introduce a new camera body that support Four Thirds lenses and/or Micro Four Thirds lenses, possibly both on the same body? And perhaps in an EVF-only body to eliminate the mirror box?

There are several things I think are mandatory for such a body to succeed:

  • Support (natively), Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds lenses.
  • Eliminate the mirror box and use the latest high-res EVF only.
  • Move the sensor to current technology, preferably to 20 or 24 megapixels.

To this day, the Olympus Super High Grade (SHG) lenses deliver the reference standard for imaging quality on Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds (via adapter). Many of them are reviewed in Guide to Mirrorless.

It has been my working presumption that the E-5 would see a successor this fall, so discontinuance might mean the imminent arrival of a new camera body. That’s the optimistic view. But given the beleagured state of the camera market one has to wonder whether Full four Thirds lenses have a doomed future.

Olympus E-5 DSLR for Micro Four Thirds discontinued
Olympus E-5 DSLR for Micro Four Thirds discontinued

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