Olympus E-5 Review

December 22, 2010 | Zoltan Arva-Toth | Rating star Rating star Rating star Rating star Half rating star


The Olympus E-5 is a new, rugged digital SLR camera that is the new flagship of the Four Thirds system. Inheriting the tough magnesium alloy body, environmental seals, large and bright viewfinder, ultra-fast multi-point AF system, 1/8000th second top shutter speed, body-integral image stabiliser, sensor dust buster and Live View capability of the three-year-old Olympus E-3; the E-5 gains two million extra pixels, a larger and much higher-resolution articulated LCD screen, a newer image processor, a range of Art Filters, a dual-axis electronic level gauge, a new "horizontal only" IS mode, AF fine tuning and HD video recording with manual exposure control. Also new is the top sensitivity of ISO 6400 and an HDMI port, as well as some minor feature enhancements such as face detection in Live View, a new "i-Enhance" picture mode, and the option to choose from a variety of aspect ratios. Along with the E-5, Olympus also introduced a new, 1600mAh battery called the BLM-5, but the camera remains compatible with the older, 1500mAh BLM-1 too. The Olympus E-5 camera body is available for £1499 / $1699 in the UK and the USA, respectively.

Ease of Use

The first thing you notice upon picking up the Olympus E-5 is that it really does feel built like the proverbial tank. Weighing in at 800 grams (nearly two pounds) without a battery, lens or memory card, the camera is essentially as heavy as the E-3, and considerably heavier than the E-1. Attach a pro-grade zoom like the Zuiko Digital ED 12-60mm f/2.8-4 SWD provided by Olympus for this review, and you’re holding over 3lbs of glass and metal in your hands - the E-5 is clearly not your average PEN camera. Speaking of which, it has to be noted right at the beginning that, being a Four Thirds model, the Olympus E-5 will take any Four Thirds lens but none of the smaller and lighter Micro Four Thirds (MFT) optics. (MFT lenses project identically sized imaging circles but have a much shorter registration distance that makes it impossible to mount them on a regular Four Thirds camera like the E-5.)

The body itself is nearly identical to that of the E-3. A prominent and well-sculpted right-hand grip ensures a firm hold, while a thoughtfully positioned and rubberised thumb rest adds further comfort. The viewfinder is just as excellent as it was on the E-3. During the review period, I shot the Olympus E-5 alongside a Nikon D3X that was used for an upcoming lens test; and while the finder of the full-frame camera was obviously bigger, I was surprised to find I didn't actually notice this without paying attention to the difference on a conscious level - this is saying a lot about how good the Olympus' finder really is. The eleven autofocus points are permanently marked on the focusing screen but are not too obtrusive and do not divert your attention from the subject. The in-finder LCD runs along the bottom, similarly to the E-1, E-3 and E-30, but unlike most other Olympus DSLRs. A green dot lights up whenever the camera thinks the subject is in focus - this function can also be used to check focus when focusing manually, but alas, it only works with dedicated Four Thirds lenses. When using a legacy lens with an adapter such as Olympus' own MF-1 unit, the above described electronic focus confirmation is unavailable.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90
Front Rear

The shutter release is well placed, falling readily under your right index finger, and the ISO, WB and exposure compensation buttons are all within easy reach. They are also differently shaped so you can tell them apart by touch, without having to take your eye off the viewfinder. The camera features two control wheels for quick adjustment of settings, with the rear one being perfectly placed for your right thumb, and the other being easily accessible to both your index and middle fingers.

The overall "philosophy" behind the E-5's user interface is the same as the E-3 - either push a button and turn a dial, or call up the interactive "Super Control Panel" to change a setting. Simple, quick and intuitive - but there are a few drawbacks. As with the E-3, the Olympus E-5 has a few buttons that serve multiple purposes depending on which dial you use them in tandem with. To wit, there are three buttons left of the pentaprism (when viewed from above and behind) that do different things when used in conjunction with the front or rear control wheel. The foremost of these buttons controls either the flash mode or flash exposure compensation, the second sets the exposure mode (P, A, S, M or Bulb) or the drive mode, while the third controls the focusing mode or the metering (this one even has a third function in Playback mode). Worse still, bracketing can be set by holding down the second and the third button simultaneously, and turning a dial. Current E-3 owners trading up will be familiar with these oddities but new owners are likely to go through at least a few days of frustration. For example on the first day of the review period, I wanted to change the focus mode and ended up with the meter set to highlight-based spot metering instead. One of the reasons is that while the primary function of each button is marked on the button itself, the secondary function is denoted with icons on the prism housing, and these are hard to see from above. The changes you make can be monitored on the top and rear displays as well as the in-finder status bar, so this is not such a big deal as it may seem at first, but you do have to pay close attention to what you are doing until it becomes second nature.

The "Super Control Panel" mentioned above is an interactive status screen displayed on the rear LCD monitor. Push the OK button to call it up, move around the screen using the arrow buttons, and use the OK button again to effect changes to settings. This solution allows you to quickly access a number of functions, including many that have no direct-access buttons, without having to enter the convoluted and not entirely logical menu system.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90
Top Tilting LCD Screen

Speaking of the screen, it is among the Olympus E-5's true highlights. Like the one on the E-3, it is fully articulated, but has grown in size and offers a much higher resolution. This is a truly gorgeous and highly versatile screen, comparable only to that found on the Canon EOS 60D (which is even higher specified). A vari-angle LCD panel like this may seem too fragile for a tough professional body, but it is actually quite robust and an even be folded inward when not in use, for additional protection.

The increased size of the screen has necessitated a reshuffling of the rear controls, which is why the biggest differences versus the E-3 can be spotted on the back panel. The physical IS button is gone, and the image stabiliser settings can only be set on the Super Control Panel. This alone wouldn't be a huge problem, but the lack of an IS button also means you can no longer preview the effect of the image stabiliser in Live View (on some Olympus bodies, you can do this by holding down the IS button). The memory card door lock has also been scrapped, and the door now slides open the same way it does on some cheaper bodies. The row of buttons that ran along the bottom of the screen of the E-3 is no longer there. Two of these buttons, labelled MENU and INFO, have been moved to the top left. I have to say that this is an unfortunate location for the INFO button, as you have to tilt and angle the camera to reach it, which interrupts the shooting experience. The Live View button has found a much better new home left of the thumb rest, while the Delete button has moved closer to the four-way pad. The power switch, which was apparently modelled after that of some older Canon DSLRs, is close to its original position near the bottom of the back panel.

Using the Olympus E-5 as a traditional SLR is a thoroughly enjoyable experience. The camera is quick and responsive, with only the start-up time being a little, though not much, longer than expected at this level. Autofocus is blazing fast with the 12-60mm lens - certainly among the fastest in the world, at least in moderate to good light. In low light, it becomes noticeably slower but remains operational down to very low light levels.  Unlike most other AF systems, the one employed by Olympus uses only cross-type, biaxial focus sensors, meaning every AF sensor is equally sensitive to both horizontal and vertical detail. You can use the arrow buttons to quickly change the active AF point. The camera does not feature a dedicated AF assist light - the flash can be used for this purpose, but it's quite annoying for the subject, and not that necessary given how sensitive the focus sensors are.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90 Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T90
External Flash Pop-up Flash

Of course, these days it's not enough for a DSLR to work well as a traditional camera  - among the things it needs to offer are Live View and video. The Olympus E-5 has both. Live View is of the main-sensor variety, accessible by way of a dedicated button. The menu allows you to specify how much and what kind of overlaid information you would like to see, and the INFO button lets you cycle through the different screens you have enabled. Among the options is a live histogram, various grid screens, crosshairs, a level gauge indicating both pitch and tilt (very accurate and sensitive in our experience) as well as a magnified display for accurate manual focussing. The latter comes in especially handy when working on a tripod. Naturally, the usability of Live View is greatly enhanced by the free-angle screen. As far as autofocus is concerned, it is available, but not nearly as fast as when using the optical viewfinder. (Some Four Thirds lenses are marketed as optimised for contrast AF, but the 12-60mm lens is not among these.)

Movie recording is a complete novelty on an Olympus E-system DSLR. The company has already implemented video in its PEN series of Micro Four Thirds cameras, but the Olympus E-5 is the first Four Thirds model to offer this feature. There is no dedicated video shooting mode, as you can start recording a clip at any time while you are in Live View. Good news first: the camera allows the user to set exposure (shutter speed and aperture) and gain (ISO) manually in M mode (aperture only in A mode). Recording starts when you push the button in the top right corner of the back panel. Push this button a second time to end the recording. There is no continuous, full-time autofocus, but you can engage AF at any time via a half-press of the shutter release - just remember it won't be terribly quick, and the microphone might pick up the sound of the focus motor. It's also possible to take a still photo while recording a clip, by fully pressing the shutter release, but doing so interrupts the video recording for several seconds. And now for the bad news: while you can shoot 720p HD movies, you don't get Full HD resolution, and you cannot change the frame rate, which is fixed at 30fps. Clip length is limited to 7 minutes (HD) or 14 minutes (VGA) - fine if you are shooting a scripted film but not when you want to capture a school play, football match or an extended ceremony. And while the footage captured is generally clean and sharp, the typical "rolling shutter" effects will raise their ugly heads when doing quick pans or capturing rapid movement.

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Memory Card Slot Battery Compartment

It is possible to record audio via the built-in mono microphone or optional stereo inputs. Video clips are recorded in Motion JPEG format and stored in an AVI container. The Olympus E-5 offers a range of Art Filters that can be applied to videos at the capture stage, potentially alleviating the need to buy specialised software to add creative effects.

The camera can save movies and photos on Compact Flash and SD memory cards. The fact that the company has retained compatibility with CF cards, and added support for SD while dropping its own outdated xD-Picture card format is welcome. Sadly, it still failed to properly implement the dual card concept. While you can have one of both cards inserted at the same time, you have to specify which one should be used by the camera. This means the Olympus E-5 cannot create instant back-ups of your files by recording them on both memory cards simultaneously, neither can it switch from one card to the other automatically when the first one fills up. This is a major disappointment, as we expected the new Olympus flagship to be capable of these simple tasks.

The Olympus E-5 is powered by a new BLM-5 battery but is fully compatible with the older BLM-1 packs as well (so much so that Olympus actually supplied a BLM-1 rather than a BLM-5 along with our review unit). The battery compartment is pretty far from the tripod socket, so it may be possible to change batteries while the camera is on a tripod, depending on the size of the quick-release plate you are using.

This concludes our evaluation of the handling and features of the Olympus E-5. Let us now find out how the camera performs in the image quality department...

Image Quality

All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 12.3 megapixel Super Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 8Mb.

During the review, the Olympus E-5 produced images of very good quality. In the Natural picture mode, colours are vibrant without being garish or over-saturated, while dynamic range is pretty good (except at ISO 100, which is actually ISO 200 overexposed and "pulled" by a stop, leading to highlight clipping in some cases). Auto Gradation can be very helpful in maximising shadow detail, and should be your preferred setting when shooting in contrasty light. From ISO 100 through ISO 800, image quality is on a par with - and arguably superior to - the APS-C competition thanks to an unusually crisp rendering of fine detail that reaches nearly Foveon-esque levels with the Noise Filter turned off. Above ISO 1600, the situation is reversed as the Olympus E-5 cannot keep up with the likes of the Nikon D7000 and the Pentax K-5, which remain perfectly usable up to ISO 6400 and beyond, where the E-5 simply can’t follow them. Long exposures are OK, but not spectacular - you will really want the camera to use dark frame subtraction to avoid hot pixels, even if this solution effectively doubles your exposure times. Finally, the presence of Art Filters may be unusual in a pro camera, but they do produce special effects that would otherwise require you to spend a lot of time in the digital darkroom.


The Olympus E-5 has a base sensitivity of ISO 200, with ISO 100 available as a "pull-processed" option (ISO 200 overexposed by a stop, and "pulled" back by the processing engine). The highest speed is ISO 3200, with a "boosted" or "push-processed" setting of ISO 6400 also available. The following crops illustrate the quality at each full speed, with the Noise Filter (see below) turned off. The raw files have been processed with ACR 6.3 at default settings.


ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)


ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)


ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)


ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)


ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)


ISO 3200 (100% Crop)

ISO 3200 (100% Crop)


ISO 6400 (100% Crop)

ISO 6400 (100% Crop)


Noise Filter

The Olympus E-5 offers four Noise Filter settings: High, Standard, Low and Off. The default setting is Standard, but it’s unnecessarily strong and robs images of fine detail, especially at slower ISO speeds. The Noise Filter settings can be modified in Menu G (Quality/Aspect/Colour/WB). The following 100% crops demonstrate the effect of each Noise Filter setting at ISO 3200.



Standard High


With the Noise Filter turned off, photos from the Olympus E-5 are crisp and sharp using the 12-60mm lens. That said, you might still want to add some extra sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. Alternatively, you can change the in-camera sharpening level to suit your needs. Here are two 100% crops which have been Saved for Web - Quality 50 in Photoshop. The right-hand image has had some sharpening applied.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)


File Quality

Olympus offers no less than four JPEG quality settings - Basic, Normal, Fine and Super Fine. Incomprehensibly, Super Fine is not selectable by default; you first have to enable it from the menu. Naturally, you may opt to save your photographs in the camera’s raw file format (ORF). Raw+JPEG shooting is available.

12M Super Fine (100% Crop) 12M Fine (100% Crop)
12M Normal (100% Crop) 12M Basic (100% Crop)
12M RAW (100% Crop)  


The weak anti-aliasing filer used in the Olympus E-5 helps with capturing fine detail that would be lost on a stronger filter, but can occasionally lead to artefacts such as colour moiré. This does not happen often, and can usually be reduced in post-processing, but is still something to be aware of, especially if using a lens that can out-resolve the sensor.


The Olympus E-5 features a pop-up flash that has multiple modes including Forced On, Forced Off, Auto, Slow Sync, Rear-Curtain Sync and almost any of these combined with red-eye reduction. It can also serve as an AF assist light or as a controller for wirelessly slaved FL-36R or FL-50R units. In addition to the on-board unit, the Olympus E-5 also has a hot-shoe for system flashes, and a PC sync terminal for studio strobes. The pictures below were taken of a white ceiling from a distance of 1.5m, with and without the built-in flash.

Flash Off - Wide Angle

Flash On - Wide Angle

ISO 64 ISO 64

Flash Off - Telephoto

Flash On - Telephoto

ISO 64 ISO 64

And now for some portraits. The pop-up flash of the Olympus E-5 did not really cause a red-eye effect, so the only noticeable difference between the Forced On and Forced On with Red-Eye Reduction settings is that the second causes the subject’s pupils to contract.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)

Red-eye reduction

Red-eye reduction (100% Crop)


The Olympus E-5 lets you dial in shutter speeds of up to 60 seconds and has a Bulb mode as well for exposure times as long as 30 minutes, which is very good news if you are seriously interested in night photography. On the other hand, the appearance of hot pixels can be a problem with long exposures, which can be tackled by turning on the Noise Reduction function. Distinct from the Noise Filter discussed above, NR is based on the principle of dark frame subtraction. Do note that this solution effectively doubles your exposure times.  The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 30 seconds, aperture of f/11 at ISO 200. We’ve included a 100% crop for you to see what the quality is like.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Image Stabilisation

The Olympus E-5 comes with a sensor-shift image stabilisation (IS) system, which allows you to take sharp hand-held photos at slower shutter speeds than with cameras that lack this feature. These examples are 100% crops from two photos taken at 1/13 second at the 120mm equivalent setting. As you can see, the one taken with IS turned off is really blurry, whereas the one captured with the help of the stabilisation system is sharp.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Shadow Adjustment Technology

The Olympus E-5 features Shadow Adjustment Technology (SAT), a useful feature for JPEG shooters. Similarly to Nikon’s D-lighting, Sony’s DRO etc., this solution brightens the shadows in a high-contrast scene without affecting the midtones or the highlights. The way to engage SAT is to set the tonal gradation to Auto via the Super Control Panel. Below you can see a comparison of Normal and Auto gradation; the difference is noticeable in the shadows. (Two other, special-use gradation settings are available on the camera, Low Key and High Key. The former is for photographing dark subjects against dark backgrounds, whereas the latter is for light-toned subjects against a light-toned background.)



Picture Modes

Olympus’ Picture Modes are essentially pre-set combinations of saturation, contrast and sharpness, except for the new i-Enhance mode that aims to optimise each photo individually. You can tailor each Picture Mode to your needs. The following examples demonstrate the differences across the available Picture Modes.









Art Filters

Perhaps surprisingly for a professional digital SLR camera, Olympus has decided to include no less than ten Art Filters in the E-5. One of these, Dramatic Tone, is entirely new. Given that these filters apply irreversible modifications to JPEGs, it makes to shoot raw+JPEG when applying any of them, so that you always have an untouched original to work with in case the effect is not to your liking.

Cross Process


Full-size Image Full-size Image

Dramatic Tone

Grainy Film

Full-size Image Full-size Image

Light Tone

Pale Light

Full-size Image Full-size Image


Pop Art

Full-size Image Full-size Image


Soft Focus

Full-size Image Full-size Image

Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Olympus E-5 camera, which were all taken using the 12.3 megapixel Super Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample RAW Images

The Olympus E-5 enables users to capture RAW and JPEG format files. We've provided some Olympus RAW (ORF) samples for you to download (thumbnail images shown below are not 100% representative).

Sample Movie & Video

This is a sample movie at the highest quality setting of 1280 x 720 pixels at 30 frames per second. Please note that this 17 second movie is 66.5Mb in size.

Product Images

Olympus E-5

Front of the Camera

Olympus E-5

Isometric View

Olympus E-5

Isometric View

Olympus E-5

Front of the Camera / External Flash

Olympus E-5

Front of the Camera / Pop-up Flash

Olympus E-5

Rear of the Camera

Olympus E-5

Rear of the Camera / Main Menu

Olympus E-5

Rear of the Camera / Rotating Screen

Olympus E-5

Top of the Camera


Olympus E-5

Bottom of the Camera

Olympus E-5
Side of the Camera
Olympus E-5
Side of the Camera
Olympus E-5
Memory Card Slot
Olympus E-5
Battery Compertment


The Olympus E-5 is an exceptionally well-built and rugged digital SLR camera that is a joy to use and produces remarkably crisp images with great colours, and resolution that defies its pixel count. The tank-like build, chunky hand-grip, ultra-fast AF system and excellent viewfinder - all inherited from its predecessor, the Olympus E-3 - made for a great shooting experience, while the large, high-res articulated LCD screen proved to be a godsend when working on a tripod or shooting hand-held above the head or near the ground. Some of the innovations first introduced with the E-30 - and thus absent from the older E-3 -, such as AF fine tuning and a dual-axis electronic level gauge, are among the most welcome improvements, too.

Having said that, Olympus did miss a golden opportunity to get rid of a few ergonomic glitches and usability handicaps that plagued the E-3: the multi-purpose buttons will still drive new users crazy in the first weeks, the dual-card concept is still poorly implemented with no instant back-up or automatic overflow options, and there is still no electronic focus confirmation available when using legacy lenses, unless you buy a "chipped" third-party adapter. Plus, the otherwise welcome increase in the size of the rear LCD monitor has led to a poorer placement of some buttons and the loss of a memory card door lock and physical IS button.

In terms of image quality, there is a marked improvement over the E-3 thanks to a somewhat higher-resolution sensor and a weaker anti-aliasing filter. From ISO 100 through ISO 800, IQ is arguably superior to some of the APS-C competition, owing to an unusually crisp rendering of fine micro-detail that reaches nearly Foveon-esque levels with the Noise Filter turned off. Above ISO 1600, the situation is reversed as the Olympus E-5 cannot keep up with the likes of the Nikon D7000 and the Pentax K-5, which remain perfectly usable up to ISO 6400 and beyond, where the E-5 simply can’t follow them. Thus, from an IQ point of view, the choice boils down to where the bulk of your shooting takes place.

As far as video goes, well, it is a mixed bag. We liked the manual exposure option and the quasi-dedicated movie shutter button, as well as the clean, high-quality footage produced. On the other hand the limitations imposed on video resolution, frame rate and recording time are all pretty incomprehensible given the pro status of the camera, and the "rolling shutter" effects are more pronounced on the E-5 than some competing models. The ability to apply Art Filters to video is great, though.

Overall, the Olympus E-5 is an excellent camera and clearly the best Four Thirds DSLR to date. Its weakest point is the eye-watering price tag of £1499/$1699 for the body only, which is higher than that of any of the main competitors (and not much lower than that of the 24-megapixel, full-frame Sony A850). Granted, the E-5’s feature set as a whole is somewhat unique but it would be surprising to see masses of Canon, Nikon or Pentax users switch systems at that price, especially given that there are some highly capable cameras in their own systems available for considerably less money. If you are already a Four Thirds user though, we can highly recommend the Olympus E-5 to you - it’s simply the best companion for your Zuiko Digital lenses.

4.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4.5
Features 4.5
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 4.5
Value for money 3

Review Roundup

Reviews of the Olympus E-5 from around the web.

popphoto.com »

For the past couple of years, Olympus has focused mostly on its Micro Four Thirds line. But, as the new E-5 ($1,700, street, body only) shows, the company hasn’t forgotten about regular Four Thirds at all. The latest update of its flagship DSLR steps up to a 12.3MP Live MOS sensor (from 10.1MP in the E-3), adds a stop of sensitivity for a top of ISO 6400, and adds 1280x720-pixel 30-fps HD video capture. Meanwhile, it keeps the super-rugged magnesium-alloy body with weathersealing that is the top of its class.
Read the full review »

ephotozine.com »

Here is the new flagship Four Thirds DSLR from Olympus, and depending on whether or not we believe the reports rampant on the web, possibly the last of the conventional models with mirror and pentaprism. Looking to the higher end of the amateur and the professional users, this new camera offers a host of features in a heavy and robust package, including a splashproof construction that suggests all-weather use. However, does the smaller sensor disadvantage the newcomer, or have Olympus indeed pulled a real winner out of the hat? Setting off into the rain and wind of winter, we shall see.
Read the full review »

neocamera.com »

The Olympus E-5 is a very feature-rich DSLR aimed at professional users. This Four-Thirds camera is built around a 12 megapixels LiveMOS sensor capable of 5 FPS continuous shooting, ISO sensitivities up to 6400 and 720p HD video recording. Its built-in stabilization system claims up to 4 stops of advantage over hand-holding. These core features are packed in a large professional-grade body with dual-control dials, a 100% coverage viewfinder and top-notch weather-sealing.
Read the full review »

digitalcamerareview.com »

E-3 owners and Olympus fans will be glad to know that the E-5 is a highly capable and rugged imaging tool. Others may be put off by some of the limits of the comparitively smaller and lower-resolution sensor.
Read the full review »

pixiq.com »

As each new generation of DSLR cameras is introduced, we benefit from upgrades such as better sensors and processors, greater speed, superior quality, and extra features. All of that is certainly true of the new E-5. It replaces the E-3 and boasts higher (12 vs. 10 MP) resolution, superior image quality plus amenities originally developed for the mirrorless E-PL series of cameras. In fact, Olympus bills this new flagship model as offering the "reliability of an E-3 and the evolution of the PEN cameras" hinting that it's the best of both worlds.
Read the full review »


Body material Magnesium alloy body
Lens mount Four Thirds mount
Image Sensor
Type 4/3 '' Hi-Speed Live MOS sensor
Effective pixels 12.3 Megapixels
Filter array Primary colour filter (RGB)
Aspect ratio & area 4:3 / 17.3 x 13.0 mm
Full resolution 13.1 Megapixels
Type TruePic V+
Dust reduction filter Supersonic Wave Filter
Viewfinder type Eye-level Pentaprism type optical viewfinder
Field of view Approx. 100 %
Magnification Approx. 1.15 x with a 50mm lens set to infinity at -1 dioptre
Depth of field preview Yes Preview button
Eye point 20 mm
Diopter adjustment Yes -3.0 - +1.0 diopter / built-in type
Focusing screen Interchangeable type
Mirror Quick return mirror
Eye piece shutter built-in type
Live View
Displayed information 100% field of view, exposure adjustment preview, white balance adjustment preview, Gradation auto preview, 5x/7x/10x magnification possible, MF/S-AF, AF frame display, AF point display, Shooting information, Histogram
Image Stabiliser
Type Sensor shift
Modes Two-dimensional, vertical or horizontal activation
Effective Compensation Range Up to 5 EV steps
Focusing System
Method TTL phase difference detection system
Focus areas 11 points / fully biaxial, automatic and manual selection
AF illuminator Yes , Built-in flash (external flash available)
AF lock Yes , Locked by first position of shutter release button in single AF mode, AE/AF lock button (customised)
AF tracking Yes , Available in continuous AF mode
Detection range -2 - 19 EV (ISO 100)
Modes Manual focus, Single AF, Single AF + MF, Continuous AF, Continuous AF + MF
Exposure System
Exposure compensation +/- 5 EV / 1, 1/2, 1/3 steps
Exposure bracketing 2 / 3 / 5 frames ( +/- 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 EV steps )
7 frames ( +/- 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 EV steps )
ISO bracketing 3 frames / 1/3, 1/2, 1 EV steps
Modes Programme automatic, Aperture priority, Shutter priority, Manual
Auto gain control Yes
Frame assistance Live View
Max. number of frames 4 frames (shooting)
4 frames (editing)
Light Metering
Method TTL open aperture light metering
Zones 49 zones Multi-pattern Sensing System
Detection range 1 - 20 EV (50mm, 1:2, ISO 100)
Modes ESP light metering, Spot metering, Centre weighted metering, Highlight, Shadow
Art Filters
Dramatic Tone  
Grainy Film  
Pin Hole  
Pop Art  
Soft Focus  
Pale & Light Colour  
Light Tone  
Gentle Sepia  
Cross Process  
Auto ISO 200 - 6400
Manual ISO 100 - 6400 in 1/3 or 1 EV ISO steps
Shutter type Computerised focal-plane shutter
Shutter release Soft Touch Electromagnetic
Self timer 12 s / 2 s
Anti Shock Yes release delay: 1/8 - 30 s
Shutter Speeds
Shutter speed range 1/8000 - 60 s (in 1/3, 1/2, 1 EV steps)
Bulb mode Up to 30 minutes (selectable longest time in the menu, default: 8 minutes)
Shutter speed P, Ps 1/8000 - 60 s
Shutter speed A priority 1/8000 - 60 s
Shutter speed S priority 1/8000 - 60 s
Shutter speed scene mode 1/8000 - 60 s
White Balance
AUTO WB system Hybrid detection system with High-speed Live MOS sensor and dedicated external sensor
Selectable steps in Kelvin 7 steps (3000 - 7500 K)
White balance adjustment +/- 7 in each R-B / G-M axis (in Auto WB and preset WB mode)
Custom WB 1 setting can be registered at Kelvin temperature (2000K - 14000K)
One-touch white balance 1 custom settings can be registered
White balance bracketing 3 frames / +/- 2, 4, 6 mired steps
Preset values Overcast, Shade, Tungsten, Sunlight, Flourescent 1, Flourescent 2, Flourescent 3
Sequence Shooting
Speed (H) 5 fps
Speed (L) 1 - 4 fps
Image Processing
Colour space sRGB / AdobeRGB
Engine TruePic V+
Sharpness + Contrast 5 levels
Saturation 5 levels
Contrast 5 levels
Black & White filter Yellow, Orange, Red, Green
Black & White toning Yellow, Orange, Red, Green in Black & White and Sepia mode.
Picture mode Vivid, Natural, Portrait, Muted, Monotone, Custom (default setting: Natural)
Gradation 4 levels
Internal Flash
Guide number 13 (ISO 100)
Flash compensation +/- 3 EV / 1/3, 1/2, 1 EV steps
Modes AUTO, Manual, Red-eye reduction, Slow synchronisation with red-eye reduction, Slow synchronisation, Slow synchronisation 2nd curtain, Fill-in, Off
Bracketing 3 frames / 1/3, 1/2, 1 EV steps
External Flash Control
X-sync speed 1/250 s / 1/8000 s
Modes Auto, Manual, Red-eye reduction, Slow synchronisation with red-eye reduction, Slow synchronisation, 2nd curtain and slow synchronisation, Fill-in for exclusive flash
Intensity +/- 3 EV / 1, 1/2, 1/3 EV steps
Built-in flash and wireless flash control from the camera body
Compatible external flash FL-50R, FL-36R
Control method Triggered and controlled by built-in flash light
Modes TTL Auto (TTL pre-flash mode), Auto, Manual, FP TTL Auto, FP Manual
Number of channels 4 channels
Group setting 3 groups
Monitor size 7.6 cm / 3.0 ''
Resolution 920000 dots
BrightCapture Yes
Brightness adjustment 15 levels
Level Gauge
Top Display
Displayed information Activated AF points, BKT notification, B/W mode notification, Drive mode, Exposure compensation indicatior, Exposure mode, Flash mode, Focus mode, ISO, Metering mode, Number of storable frames, Record mode, White balance, White balance compensation value, Back light timer
Super Control Panel
Displayed information Metering mode, Exposure mode, Aperture value, Shutter speed, Exposure level view, Flash compensation value, Exposure compensation indicatior, AE bracketing, ISO, Colour space, Picture mode, Gradation, Colour saturation compensation value, Sharpness compensation value, Contrast compensation value, White balance, White balance compensation value, Noise reduction, AEL notification, Flash mode, Focus mode, AF frame, Drive mode, Record mode, Number of storable frames, Memory card, Battery indicator
Super Control Panel (Flash)
Displayed information AF illuminator disactivated notification, AEL notification, Aperture value, Bracketing, Built-in flash intensity, Colour space, Exposure compensation indicatior, Exposure mode, Flash compensation value, Group settings, Noise reduction, Shutter speed, Wireless channel setting
Recording Formats
RAW 12 bit
RAW & JPEG Yes parallel recording
JPEG compression 1/2.7, 1/4, 1/8, 1/12 SHQ 1/2.7, 1/4, 1/8, 1/12 HQ 1/2.7, 1/4, 1/8, 1/12 SQ
Image Size
RAW 4032 x 3024 compressed / 14 MB / frame
Large 4032 x 3024 Super Fine / 8.2 MB / frame
4032 x 3024 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 5.7 MB / frame
4032 x 3024 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 2.7 MB / frame
4032 x 3024 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 1.8 MB / frame
Middle 3200 x 2400 Super Fine / 5.4 MB / frame
3200 x 2400 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 3.4 MB / frame
3200 x 2400 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 1.7 MB / frame
3200 x 2400 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 1.2 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Super Fine / 3.2 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 2.2 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 1.1 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.8 MB / frame
Small 1600 x 1200 Super Fine / 1.3 MB / frame
1600 x 1200 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.9 MB / frame
1600 x 1200 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.5 MB / frame
1600 x 1200 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.4 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Super Fine / 0.9 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.6 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.3 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.3 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Super Fine / 0.3 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.4 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.2 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.1 MB / frame
640 x 480 Super Fine / 0.2 MB / frame
640 x 480 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.2 MB / frame
640 x 480 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.1 MB / frame
640 x 480 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.1 MB / frame
Still Image Recording
Movie Recording System
Movie mode HD 1280 x 720 (16:9) / SD 640 x 480 (4:3)
Max. recording time 14 min (SD) / 7 min (HD)
Frame rate 30 fps
Max. file size 2 GB
Sound Recording System
Sound recording Yes , format: Stereo PCM/16bit, 44.1kHz, WAV
Internal microphone Mono
Speaker Yes
External microphone Optional
View Images
Index Yes 4, 9, 16, 25 frames
Calendar Yes
Zoom Yes 2 - 14 x
Slide show Yes
Auto rotation Yes
Light box Yes
Histogram in playback mode Yes
Shooting information Off / On Histogram (independent luminance / RGB available), Highlight / Shadow point warning, AF frame, Shooting information
Erase / Protect / Copy Function
Erase modes Single, All, Selected
Image protect mode Single, Selected
Copy mode Single, All, Selected
Image Editing
RAW data edit Yes
Red-eye reduction Yes
Sepia Yes
Black & White Yes
Resize Yes
Correction of saturation Yes
Shadow Adjustment Yes
Aspect ratio Yes
Menu languages in camera English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Czech, Dutch, Danish, Polish, Portuguese, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, Croatian, Slovenian, Hungarian, Greek, Slovak, Turkish, Latvian, Estonian, Lithuanian, Ukrainian, Serbian
Menu languages by download Additional one language from 15 further languages by download via the internet.
Customisation Options
Fn Button Off, one-touch WB, test picture, preview, Live View, AF home setting, MF, record format, exposure mode, My Mode, underwater modes
Custom preset options 2
My Mode 4 settings storable
Power Supply
Battery BLM-5 Li-Ion battery (included)
Sleep mode 1, 3, 5, 10 min. and off selectable.
Temperature 0 - 40 °C operating temperature / -20 - 60 °C storage temperature
Humidity 30 - 90 % operation humidity / 10 - 90 % storage humidity
Dimensions (W x H x D) 142.5 x 116.5 x 74.5 mm (without protrusions)
Weight 800 g (body only)
Media CF/SD Dual-Slot, CompactFlash Type I/II (UDMA), SD Memory Card(SDHC/SDXC compatible) Class 6 or higher is recommended for Movie shooting
USB 2.0 High Speed Yes
Video out Yes NTSC or PAL selectable
Infrared Yes
DC input Yes
Synchro socket Yes
HDMI™ Yes Mini connector (type C)

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