The Micro Four Thirds system is a revolutionary digital hybrid camera system which combines compact size, ease of use and movie mode functionality of the digital point and shoots with the larger sensor (and thus higher image quality and shallower depth of field) and interchangable lens capability of digital SLRs.
It achieves this by removing the mirror of the SLRs, and is only possible with the rapid technologic changes that have dramatically improved contrast detect AF functionality on par with entry level dSLR AF speed, while electronic viewfinder technology has also improved.
It’s short lens flange to sensor distance (20mm compared with 40mm on Four Thirds) means that super wide angle lenses can be made much smaller and one can adapt almost ANY lens ever made on it, including Leica M, Leica R, Olympus Pen, Olympus OM, Canon FD, Nikon F, Minolta, Pentax K, Hasselblad, Pentax 6×7, and even Canon EOS (new Metabones adapters even allow aperture control and slow AF).
The system is thus THE MOST ADAPTABLE camera system available in terms of lenses – however, they will generally only be able to be used in manual focus, and in 35mm terms, the sensor gives a 2x crop factor so that the angle of view of a 50mm lens will be similar to that of a 100mm on a 35mm film camera.
The Olympus OM-D series of cameras are fantastic, compact, extremely versatile cameras which offer class leading performance in terms of:
- weathersealing (except the E-M10)
- compact size whilst still having a viewfinder and compact, interchangeable lenses
- range of dedicated AF lenses – now more than 40 lenses available
- autofocus speed and accuracy for static subjects
- sensor-based 5 axis image stabilisation 5EV effectiveness (6.5EV if using Dual IS with OIS lenses
- image stabilisation for movies
- long exposure modes
My main Micro Four Thirds web pages on my wikipedia:
- Panasonic, Olympus Micro Four Thirds hybrid digitals – features, list of cameras and bodies
- master index of everything you need to know about the Olympus OM-D camera system
- comparison of current Micro Four Thirds cameras
- my links to selected photos taken with MFT’s
- lenses for Micro Four Thirds
- flash for Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds