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 (see the 7-14mm zooms here) and one can adapt almost ANY lens every 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 (although at present only at wide open aperture as EOS lenses do not have aperture rings).
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.
Fortunately, the G-1 and GH-1 have the most functional visual manual focus assist system I have seen – it is automatically activated with most MFT or FT lenses by rotating the MF ring, but for other lenses just press the AF button on rear of camera. This makes MF accurate even in bright daylight or low light conditions.
See here for lenses which can be used.
My main Micro Four Thirds web page:
- Panasonic, Olympus Micro Four Thirds hybrid digitals – features, list of cameras and bodies
- some of my photos taken with the GH-1 categorised by lens used
- my links to various GH-1 videos (not my videos) to inspire you
- my links to selected photos taken with MFT’s
- lenses for Micro Four Thirds
- flash for Four Thirds and Micro Four Thirds
- video editing for Micro Four Thirds AVCHD movies
- comparison with other mirror-less cameras
On this blog in reverse chronologic order: