Shooting Video With Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV

This blog entry is a continuation from my Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV review article. If you have not read that, please do so here (click) before continuing with this post. I am only discussing specifically the video performance of E-M10 Mark IV here. 

The E-M10 Mark IV is an interesting camera, being released in 2020, taking the latest entry level OM-D model with very respectable photography-centric features (updated 20MP image sensor, improved 5-Axis IS, revised hand-gripping for better handling, tilt-down screen for selfie). However when it comes to video recording front, the camera seems a little conflicted. On one hand, Olympus has rock-steady video stabilization for hand-held footage, improved C-AF algorithm and respectable 4K video quality. On the other hand, Olympus missed two very critical features for video: microphone input and a swivel/fully articulated LCD screen. I am sharing my experience using the E-M10 Mark IV shooting video in this blog entry. 

Here is my video version of this article - which carries some examples of what I am discussing here. 

Video was also almost entirely recorded with E-M10 Mark IV, with exception of B-Rolls shot with E-M5 Mark III, which I have indicated clearly. 

Basic video specifications on E-M10 Mark IV
4K up to 30p, Full HD 1080 up to 60p,
HD 720 up to 120fps slow motion capture
5-Axis IS for video stabilization shooting hand-held
Improved C-AF algorithm
Full manual control over ISO, aperture and shutter speed in dedicated video mode

I am going to be entirely honest, I am not a cinematography, I am noob when it comes to film making, so I won't consider this as a review for E-M10 Mark IV's video performance. I am simply not qualified to do so. I am sure some other videographers who are more experienced will be able to give you a better assessment. What I can do is to share my experience shooting with the E-M10 Mark IV in two very specific uses: live stage music performance as well as my usual vlogging activities. 

I have brought the E-M10 Mark IV to shoot Bihzhu, a friend and singer-songwriter who performed live recently, and I recorded a 5 minutes long of her performance which was shot in one take, uncut. You may find the previous blog entry about Bihzhu here (click). Please do watch that video, because what I am discussing here is also heavily based on that 4K video sample. 




THE GOOD NEWS
5-AXIS IMAGE STABILIZATION FOR VIDEO
The image stabilization is the main differentiating factor for E-M10 Mark IV vs other entry level interchangeable cameras in the same category. The 5-Axis IS stabilizes the footage so well, that it was smooth, jitters free and almost gimbal-like, if there is not too much movement involved. Bear in mind in the Bihzhu-Nowness 4K video sample, I was shooting with the M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8, which has an equivalent focal length of 150mm. At such long lens, yet shooting the entire 5 minutes video hand-held was a breeze and the whole footage was shake free and almost perfectly smooth. If you don't intend to carry gimbals, steadycams or tripods and do a lot of video shooting hand-held, you may want to look at what Olympus' 5-Axis IS can do, no competition comes close at this moment, especially not at this price point. 

To drive this point home, imagine you are using any other cameras, with or without IS, then mount the 70-200mm lens onto the camera. Zoom to 150mm, and shoot a video hand-held for 5 minutes. And tell me you can accomplish similar level of stabilization with what I have shown you in the E-M10 Mark IV footage. I don't think any other entry level DSLR/mirrorless cameras can do this!

C-AF WITH FACE DETECT
C-AF has always been one of the weaknesses for Olympus cameras, both for stills and videos with exception to high end flagships such as E-M1 series, and more recently, the E-M5 Mark III. The main reason being not having phase detection AF built onto the image sensor. E-M1 series (including the latest E-M5 Mark III) has built in phase detection sensors to help better subject tracking and continuous focusing operations, and they have proven to work very well. Olympus claimed that they have used the same C-AF algorithm from flagship E-M1 Mark III and worked it into the contrast detection AF of E-M10 Mark IV, improving it from previous incarnations of E-M10 cameras. 

From my experience shooting the live music performance, it the C-AF worked very well, keeping the most fore-front subject to be in focus. Bear in mind that the lighting was also quite good, the stage was well lit, and I did not have too many messy subjects to deal with. The face detect did fail a little there and here but it was probably me not using the camera enough to operate it more efficiently. If you have seen this vlog of me explaining the E-M10 Mark IV, you will also see how the C-AF sticks to my face the entire time, with no issue at all. 

I do admit that, having tested the E-M10 Mark IV extensively, I still find the C-AF in E-M1 series and E-M5 Mark III to work more effectively and efficiently. The C-AF locks quicker, more confidently and sticks on the face better. It is no surprise, since E-M10 Mark IV does not have phase detection AF, but I do admit it is a big improvement over previous E-M10 series cameras that really did much poorer job in C-AF and face detection in video shooting. 

GOOD 4K VIDEO
Unlike E-M1 Mark III or E-M5 Mark III, the E-M10 Mark IV does not have cinema 4K with 237Mbps bitrate. The 4K video is the standard UHD resolution with unknown bitrate, but I find the 4K video to be quite good, sharp with plenty of details and does handle colors, dynamic range and contrast very well. Olympus plays their strength in excellent JPEG engine for video shooting and the straight out of camera footage looks very pleasing and perfectly usable without much grading. In fact, I did only minimal grading to the footage (shifted the color a little toward colder tone, the original capture was a little too warm for my own taste). For those who use Full HD, downscaling the 4K resolution to 1080p gives excellent results. 

Unfortunately this is where the good news ends. 

THE BAD NEWS
NO MICROPHONE INPUT
That is quite an unforgiveable sin. I don't know how to defend Olympus even if I wanted to, and I believe they should have included some way to connect to a microphone, even if it means allowing the use of the micro USB port via some adapter. There is no way to have audio in. If you are considering to get E-M10 Mark IV, your only solution is to record audio separately via a voice recorder and sync the audio later in post-production. There is built in microphone of course but I won't recommend using that for any serious video work. 

NO SWIVEL SCREEN
It would have been great if a swivel screen is included, but Olympus decided to do a tiltable screen, which tilts downward for selfie. It would have been more helpful if the screen tilts upward instead, so that when used with tripod, the screen is not blocked. On one hand, it is clear that the tilt screen is not suitable for video work, but it is also very obvious Olympus designed the E-M10 Mark IV more specifically for photography/stills shooters. 

To be fair, Olympus did not mention or promise anything about E-M10 Mark IV being a video shooting camera, or a vlogging camera, which some companies did with their recent products and not fulfilling their own claims satisfactorily. Those deserve much harsher criticism. The solution here is quite clear - if you want to vlog or do anything video with Olympus Micro Four Thirds - go for E-M5 Mark III, or higher. E-M5 Mark III has everything checked from swivel articulating screen to microphone input and even Cinema 4K mode, and 120fps Full HD slow motion, I have been using the E-M5 Mark III for my vlogs on my YouTube channel for more than half a year now and it worked extremely well. I'd expect many photographers would welcome E-M10 Mark IV being a more stills oriented camera - the tilt sreen arguably works better for quicker response time, especially for street photography, and is more stealthy too. 

Having said that, I do hope that moving forward, in future Olympus product strategies, after the transfer to JIP is complete, they would consider more serious video features offerings in their lower level cameras, such as the E-M10 series and E-PL series. It is not difficult to predict that the sales would have gone up further for E-M10 Mark IV, if these two video features (microphone input and swivel screen) were included. 

Any other important video features that you think a camera must have in 2020? Share your thoughts! 

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Olympus M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8 On The Street

Now that we are free to move around again after the lockdown is relaxed about a month ago in Malaysia, I have been shooting almost non-stop. It started with the shooting frenzy for reviews of the two recently released Olympus products: E-M10 Mark IV and M.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 IS lens, which required me to go to various locations for sample images and to put the products through their paces. Then I have also been getting a few photography jobs, not many, but good enough to recover some financial losses during the 3 months full lockdown period since March. In between with some spare time that I have, I have been occupying myself with shutter therapy sessions! I have been shooting on the streets of Kuala Lumpur. 

One fine day I brought out the E-M1 Mark III and M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8, and attacked Petaling Street with my friend, Tang Chun Cheuh. It was a good day with plenty of good light, and I managed to get some keepers. I have also shared these images in one of my recent videos (follow up to the Malaysian government banning video posting on social media), I thought it would be great to have these photographs displayed here in my blog as well. I do have some photos that I really like from this session. 

I disagree with the argument of long lenses not being suitable for street photography. The reasoning of being disconnected with the human subject, or being too far away and not having the "close up" impact, I find them very flawed. Why must we be close and "intimate" with the subject? What is wrong with distance? What if I intentionally wanted the space between me and my subject? Being close is not necessarily the best solution for all shots. I am not saying there is anything wrong working with the popular traditional focal lengths for street shooting, typically 35mm, but I find myself gravitating toward using much longer focal lengths. I simply love what the Olympus 75mm 1.8 can do, it is non-conventional covering equivalent 150mm, which is at the longer end. I find the images cleaner, more structured, less cluttered and more focused on the main subject or story that I am telling. 

There is no right and wrong when it comes to shooting, that much I have learned from my limited experience as a photographer. You just need to work the given tool that is given to you, and find a way to get the best results you can. 















I am just thankful that things are slowly returning to normal here in Malaysia, the pandemic situation is pretty much under control, and I am free to move about and do my shutter therapy sessions. I hope that wherever you are, you are able to go out and shoot too!

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4K Video From Olympus E-M10 Mark IV - Shooting Bihzhu Performing LIVE

I have had a funny story leading up to this article and video. When I saw my friend Bihzhu, a talented Malaysian singer-songwriter posted on her social media that she was going to have an exclusive live performance, I immediately jumped in and bought the ticket for her show. I honestly thought it was an exclusive online live streaming show, since we are still under the whole pandemic social distancing situation here in Malaysia. That was several days before the show, and I did not give much thought about it until the evening just a few hours before the actual event, I saw Bihzhu posted on her Facbook saying they will go on stage soon and if we wanted to see her in person, we should buy tickets. I thought I read wrongly "in person", took me a few minutes to realize the ticket I bought was for a real live performance on a physical stage, not seeing it from the computer streamed at home! I had to make last minute adjustments to my Friday evening, rushed home to shower, grabbed my gear and made to the show just in time before they started!

Here is a 4K video sample recorded with the new Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV. 
Bihzhu was performing her hew song - NOWNESS. 

Please check out BIHZHU's amazing music and follow her on social media:

This was the first time Bihzhu performed in many months since the tight nationwide lockdown in Malaysia on 18 March, and it was quite a special event indeed. I was privileged to be in the audience and watch the show in person. 

I will discuss the video performance of E-M10 Mark IV and my experience using the camera to shoot live music performance on stage as well as for my typical vlogging in my coming article and video. For this blog entry, let's just enjoy Bihzhu's music, and I will also share some shots taken during this live performance. 

Some technical details on the 4K video recording from E-M10 Mark IV
Lens used: M.Zuiko 75mm F1.8
Audio recorded separately and synced in post
Video shot hand-held
4K UHD mode
Movie mode in full Manual
1/50, ISO400, F1.8
C-AF used with Face Detection AF enabled
WB Auto
Stabilization M-IS-1

During the time of the performance, the E-M10 Mark IV was not released yet and I was under strict NDA, so I was very careful in using the camera in public. I only recorded one song, and tested some video shooting quickly, before switching to E-M1 Mark III to do the rest of the photo-shooting for the evening. All images from here onward were shot with E-M1 Mark III with various lenses, 17mm F1.8, 25mm F1.8, 45mm F1.8 and 75mm F1.8. 

Best Budget 10 Inch Android Tablet? Teclast P20HD Review

Recently I bought myself a cheap China-made 10 inch Anrdoid tablet, the Teclast P20HD and I personally think it is one great value for money buy. I needed a smart tablet for my photography shooting workflow as well as for personal media consumption, mainly reading e-books and comics. I find that the Teclast P20HD checks all the right boxes - it has decent specifications, beautiful display, runs on latest Android 10 and priced significantly well below what other bigger brands are asking for. I bought mine from Lazada for RM499 (you can find it as low as RM429 during a recent "flash sale") and have been using it for more than 2 weeks now. Here is my review of Teclast P20HD!

For those who prefer to watch a video review instead of reading an article, I got you covered!


DISCLAIMERS
This is not a sponsored video and I am not associated with Teclast in any way. I bought the P20HD tablet with my own cash. I am sharing my independent, honest opinion, having used this tablet for slightly over 2 weeks now. I am not a tech/gadget reviewer hence I will not dive deep into technical analysis, there will be no heavy benchmarking, graphs and charts. I am merely sharing my experience using the Teclast P20HD tablet. 

WHY ANDROID TABLET?
Every one has a different reason or purpose of purchasing a specific gadget, I thought it will be helpful to state my intentions clear from the start. I decided to get a tablet to aid my photography shooting workflow. I am a photographer based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and I do event coverage, weddings, portraits and lifestyle/casual product shoots. I am currently using Olympus Micro Four Thirds system for my professional photography, thus I can connect my Olympus camera to an Android based smart device. Once connected to the camera, I can use the tablet to show my photographs taken on location immediately to my clients for instant feedback and readjustments for subsequent takes. Having a tablet is more agile and portable for my style of shooting, I move a lot and a laptop would have been a lot more cumbersome. For professional product photography I still shoot tethered to a laptop for better control. 

I decided on a 10 inch sized tablet which I believe hits the right sweet-spot of being large enough to see the images clearly, yet the tablet remains portable enough to carry around. 8 inch would have been too small, and anything larger will be more difficult to handle. The Teclast P20HD came in just nice for this particular scenario, I have used the tablet for a few shoots and it performed flawlessly. 

Besides the use for my photography shoots, I also use the Android tablet for media consumption - mostly for reading e-books and comics. I find that holding a tablet while reading e-books is better than reading it off a laptop screen, there is something about holding a physical device when reading that makes it more enjoyable. Similarly to comics as well. 

PRODUCT OVERVIEW
The Teclast P20HD is a budget, 10 inch, China made Android based tablet. It has some very impressive specifications for the price-point that I believe no other popularly branded tablets can match in offering.
Here are the key specifications:
Android 10 OS
Unisoc Spreadtrum sc9863a Octa Core processor
4GB RAM
64GB ROM
10.1 inch IPS Full HD LCD display
6000mAh battery capacity 
Dual band WiFi and Bluetooth 5.0

The Teclast P20HD works well with my Olympus ecosystem - Bluetooth connection was stable and reliable. 

10 inch is just the perfect size. 8 inch would have been too small (smartphones are inching towards 7" territory), and anything larger than 10" would have been less portable and becoming difficult to handle. 

Simply love the minimalist design of the tablet - virtually nothing in front, just black bezels and screen, that's it. I like that the logo and branding are hidden at the back of the tablet. The clean, minimalist look matches my other gadgets very well. 

LOOK, FEEL & BUILD QUALITY
Though this is a budget-friendly tablet, it did not feel cheaply built at all. The Teclast P20HD features an all metal back, glass front (display) and plastic sides/edges. The metal back gives the tablet a very premium feel when holding it in hand. The tablet felt really solid, well-constructed with no creaking parts and has no flex when I tried to bend it from all directions. 

I do quite like the design of the tablet in general. I like the minimalist and clean look, with no logo or visible branding of any sort from the front. The Teclast branding and model number are only visible at the back of the tablet, and that is perfectly find since it is easily hidden away. The combination of black glossy front and brushed metal finish at the back of the tablet made it a very beautiful looking device. The screen bezels are not exactly super slim for 2020 standards but for a 10 inch tablet I'd prefer to have some bezels to prevent accidental touches on the screen when handling the device. Too slim of the bezel will spell disaster since the screen is completely touch operation capable. 

INPUT/OUPUT & PORTS
The Teclast P20HD has very minimal ports and controls on the tablet, since most of the operations can be done touch-based. 
On the left side panel:
- Power button
- Volume rocker
- USB-C data/power connection
On the right side panel:
- Nothing
At the bottom:
- Stereo speakers
At the top:
- 3.5mm Headphones Jack
- 4G/Micro SD Card slot
Of course there is the front camera (webcam) and also rear main camera, which I think should be neglected from existence. 

SCREEN QUALITY
The screen quality is perhaps the most important aspect of this tablet to me. Thankfully, the Teclast P20HD has an excellent IPS LCD panel. It is bright, vivid and the colors are highly accurate. Also, you can further fine-tune the white balance adjustment from the display settings. Color accuracy and how my images look on the display are crucial to me since I am a photographer and I intend to use the tablet to show off my photographs. The Full HD resolution was just nice, I'd shy away from choosing a 720p resolution if you want to use this to view and share your photographs. There is sufficient pixel density rendering crisp looking images with plenty of fine details and good contrast, my images look very good on the tablet. 

The tablet does get very bright but viewing under direct sun or bright environment could be an issue due to the glossy and highly reflective screen. Nonetheless, it is bright enough to handle even direct sunlight. However, it does not go dim enough at minimum setting by default, you may need to install third party app to further bring down the brightness level if you intend to use the tablet in very low light environment. 

The front of of course, made of glass, covering the screen display. 

The tablet is really slim in build, and very light too, weighing at only about 531g. The stereo speakers are placed at the bottom. 

All around the edges were well curved. At the right side panel: power button, volume rocker, and USB-C port for charging and data transfer. 

The back plate is made of metal, which gives the tablet a very nice premium feel. The build is quite solid. The rear camera is located at the top right corner, which can be neglected. You can find at the top panel a 3.5mm audio jack (for headphones) and 4G Sim and Micro SD slot. 

The Full HD IPS LCD panel is bright, vivid and shows accurate, pleasing colors. There is enough pixel density to show off fine details and contrast in the images. 

GENERAL USE & OPERATIONS
The tablet runs very smoothly with no stutter and issues during my use. App launches very quickly, switching between apps was a breeze and overall the user experience has been very positive. Important note - I don't do anything heavy on this tablet, I only used it for web-browsing, watching YouTube videos, social media interactions, light photo editing (using Snapseed), reading e-books and comics and of course, as mentioned earlier for work being connected to my Olympus camera to display images from the camera. Everything runs efficiently and I did not experience any problems. I did not do anything too overwhelming for the tablet - I am not a gamer, I did not run any games and certainly I did not do video editing on it either. Your milleage may vary depending on what app you are using and what you intend to use the tablet for. 

The 4GB of RAM surely helped in ensuring everything went without hiccup. The Unisoc Spreadtrum sc9832e Octa Core processor may not be the most powerful processor for a smart device but it is sufficient for light tasks. The Antutu score I got from this tablet was slightly above 100 which was very good for a budget tablet, certainly better than I have expected. 

ANDROID 10 OS WITH NO BLOATWARE
The one thing I do like about the Teclast P20HD is that the tablet runs on Android 10 out of the box. I don't think Teclast intends to keep the firmware updated so the OS running on the latest version is a plus point, considering I don't intend to buy another tablet any time soon. For those who are curious, yes the Google Playstore is already pre-installed and fully compatible, with no issues. 

I did not find any bloatware pre-installed, which was another surprise, considering this is a China tablet and I'd expect some junk apps being included and will face some difficulties removing them. None found whatsoever, which was another great thing. The Android OS is almost barebone, the skin feels very vanilla/stock-like and that is a rarity, even for more popular branded counterparts. I find navigating around the menu and apps very smooth and lag-free, and generally the performance of this tablet, especially at this budget category, is commendable. 

Generally, I am very happy with the display. Even at close up view, you don't see the pixels just yet, unless you stick your eyes very, very close to the tablet, which you should not do, it is 10 inch in size!

Not a bad score for a cheap tablet! Certainly can do very well with light tasks thrown to the tablet. 


Having a large 10 inch screen helps with reading comics, or books.

I carry the tablet everywhere I go to. It is slim, small and light enough to fit in any of my bags, and does not take much space at all. 


WIFI & BLUETOOTH
The tablet does have dual band WiFi capability and Bluetooth 5.0 built in. I did not push the WiFi, I am not doing anything crazy with the tablet, like downloading large sized 4K movie. The most heavy internet use was loading an online photo gallery of full resolution images, or stream YouTube in Full HD, both the tablet handled very well, and internet connection was fast and smooth. I have also used the Bluetooth connection mainly for my wireless headphones. I am currently still using my 1More Stylish True Wireless Earbuds, which I have reviewed here recently (click). 

4G CALL
The tablet does take in 4G SIM cards and you are able to make phone calls with this tablet, and make use of the 4G LTE network connection for internet. However, I do not intend to use a SIM card for this tablet, so I did not test this. 

SO, ANY BAD NEWS?
Of course, being a budget tablet, the company needs to cut corners somewhere, it cannot be all good news. The one thing which I did not see coming was the poor quality of the audio headphones jack. My goodness, that 3.5mm audio jack was possibly the worst one I have encountered in my entire life. It is pure rubbish and unusable, you should just ignore it's existence. The sound coming from that 3.5mm audio jack is tinny, lacks clarity, has no bass, and is so just utterly horrendous. If you want to enjoy audio from the Teclast P20HD tablet, I highly suggest you invest in a reliable pair of wireless headphones, the prices have gone down. 

The cameras, both at the front and back, are quite poor. Not that any tablets have any good cameras, so I should not be slamming this tablet but it is what it is, you can also safely ignore the cameras and do your best not to use them. You should have your smartphone with you at all times, even a budget, cheap smartphone today can have vastly superior cameras than what you get from the tablet. 

The built in speakers at the bottom of the tablet aren't that bad, but there is nothing to write home about. The sound does get quite loud, but it is passable at best, and not good enough audio quality to be enjoyable for music or movie. Again, may I suggest getting a good pair of wireless headphones, or if you are in a room, connect the audio out via Bluetooth for much better sound quality. 

BATTERY LIFE
I have not successfully drained the battery, just to be honest here, I started charging the tablet when it hits close to 20% capacity left. Well, I used the tablet quite a lot throughout the day, so there is no point having left 20% of charge and let that drag onto the next day, which I will need the tablet for an entire day out of the house. I found myself getting about 7-8 hours of usage, which was very close to what Teclast has claimed about 7 hours usage. I don't think that is something to shout about, since the battery capacity is large (6000mAh), so the battery life squeezed out of the P20HD is in line with what is expected from the matching capacity. 


CONCLUSIONS & FINAL THOUGHTS
I really did enjoy using the Teclast P20HD tablet, and I personally think it is worth every little cent spent. For a budget, relatively cheap Android tablet, Teclast offers a lot of bang for the buck - you get a lot out of this tablet. While the processor may not be powerful enough to handle intense gaming or other heavy tasks, this is not what the tablet is designed for. For day to day casual use, with light  multi-tasking, I the P20HD performs smoothly with no issues. 

What I like:
Solid build
Minimalist, clean look
Excellent display
Buttery smooth operations (thanks to 4GB RAM)
Android 10 OS
Good battery life
Low pricing

What I dislike:
Poor audio quality from 3.5mm jack
Mediocre built in speakers
Bad cameras

If you are in the market for a smart tablet and you don't want to burn a hole in your wallet or bite into the forbidden fruit's poison, do take a good look at the Teclast P20HD. I personally believe this is the best budget 10" Android tablet for 2020. 

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1600mm Beast! Olympus M.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 + MC-20 2X Teleconverter

This blog entry is a follow up to the previous review article on recently released Olympus M.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 IS lens (click here). Please read the original article if you have not already done so. I shall be exploring the use of 2x teleconverter MC-20 being attached on the 100-400mm lens in this particular post. I intentionally separate the use of teleconverter out from the original review, because I wanted the focus to be solely on the lens, and to be quite frank, 400mm (800mm equivalent in 35mm format) is plenty of reach already. 

Here is the video version of this article

Special thanks to Van Ligutom for behind the scenes footage. 

To test the teleconverters on Olympus 100-400mm lens, I went to Kuala Lumpur Bird Park. No, I will not be crazy to venture into the dangerous rainforest and get myself eaten by snakes or dinosaurs. I am a city boy and will not survive in the wild. I shall stay safe, and I intend to live to see what happens after the transfer of Olympus imaging to JIP is complete, whatever that may happen. The Bird Park was a safe solution to effectively test what the combination of lens and teleconverter can do. 

I initially wanted to test both the MC-14 1.4x and MC-20 2x teleconverters and give my comments on how they each perform with the use on 100-400mm lens, but I realized that may not be practical, and it was no easy task taking in and out, swapping the teleconverters when I was handling such a huge lens, the 100-400mm lens. I decided to stay with the MC-20 2x Teleconverter, but you do see some shots taken with the MC-14 from time to time. The observations made in this article is based solely on the use of MC-20 on 100-400mm lens only. 

I have also reviewed the Olympus MC-20 teleconverter before, please do read that up if you want to find out more about the teleconverter. I will not be discussing the performance of the MC-20 or 100-400mm lens separately here, let's just get straight to the point. 

Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark IV Review

Olympus has added a new camera to their OM-D line, the E-M10 Mark IV. I have had a sample review unit on loan for about 2 weeks before the official release of the camera and I have been shooting a lot with it. The E-M10 Mark IV succeeds the E-M10 Mark III as the new advanced entry level OM-D camera from Olympus. I will share my user experience and plenty of fresh sample photographs taken from the E-M10 Mark IV in this review blog entry. 

I also have a video review for the E-M10 Mark IV, for those who prefer to watch than read. 

 
DISCLAIMERS
I am an Olympus Visionary, an ambassador to the Olympus brand. The E-M10 Mark IV was on loan from Olympus and shall be returned after reviewing purposes. This is a non-technical review, so there will be no graphs, charts or comparison in numbers. I am sharing my experience as a professional photographer having been shooting extensively with the E-M10 Mark IV for about 2 weeks now. This is also the photography review for the E-M10 Mark IV, I am not a cinematographer thus I am not qualified to review the video performance of the camera. However, I do intend to discuss the video performance for vlogging purposes in the future, separate from this particular article. 

PRODUCT OVERVIEW
The E-M10 series cameras have always been the entry level Micro Four Thirds camera models from Olympus. It is a stripped down version of the OM-D flagships, excluding the professional and high grade features like weather-sealing, rugged build and advanced shooting features like Pro Capture Mode and High Res Mode. Having said that, do not let this fool you, the E-M10 Mark IV is every bit a capable Olympus camera that can deliver good results. 

What has changed from E-M10 Mark III to E-M10 Mark IV? 
- Updated image sensor, bump of resolution to 20MP from 16MP
- Improved 5-Axis Image Stabilization in body to 4.5 EV steps compensation from 4 EV steps
- Reworked hand-gripping area for handling
- Tiltable LCD screen that has tilt-down selfie mode, similarly found from E-PL series cameras
- Improved C-AF algorithm for photos and videos

Everything else remained exactly the same from E-M10 Mark III, the imaging processor is Truepic VIII and you can shoot video up to 4K 30p resolution. Also, all the important and unique Olympus features such as Live Time, Live Composite, Time Lapse shooting and Keystone Compensation are still available. I won't dive deep into all the little details, for full product descriptions you can go to Olympus' official page here (click). 

E-M10 Mark IV, the smallest and lightest OM-D camera from Olympus, with advanced features

Olympus M.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 IS Review

While the company is in the process of being sold to JIP, Olympus has not slowed down in product releases. Today Olympus launched 3 products: super telephoto zoom lensM.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 IS and two new cameras OM-D E-M10 Mark IV and Mark IIIs. I have had sample/review units of the 100-400mm lens and E-M10 Mark IV for about 2 weeks now, and let's start with the 100-400mm lens review!

I have also made a video version of Olympus M.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 IS Review here:

 
Special thanks to Van Ligutom for helping out with the behind the scenes footage, appreciate it much buddy!

DISCLAIMERS
I am an Olympus Visionary, a brand ambassador for Olympus Malaysia. The Olympus 100-400mm lens was on loan and will be returned to Olympus Malaysia after reviewing purposes. This is a non-technical review, I shall not go deep into analysis, charts, graphs, or any technical comparison. I am sharing my experience as a professional photographer using the Olympus 100-400mm lens. 

PRODUCT OVERVIEW
Olympus M.Zuiko 100-400mm F5-6.3 IS lens is a super telephoto zoom lens, and currently has the longest reach of all Olympus Micro Four Thirds lens collection at full 400mm end. This is a non-PRO lens, a more affordable alternative to the coming M.Zuiko 150-400mm F4.5 IS PRO lens, which Olympus mentioned will be released in this coming winter. Here are the specification highlights of the Olympus 100-400mm lens:
- Fully weather-sealed with IPX1 rating
- Superb optical design with 21 elements in 15 groups design
- Built in Image Stabilization
- Compatible with Olympus teleconverters: MC-14 and MC-20 (1.4x and 2.0x conversion respectively)
- Comes with remove-able metal tripod collar and plastic lens hood
- Weight 1.12kg
For full product specifications, please visit the official product page here (click). 

LOOK, FEEL & BUILD QUALITY
The Olympus 100-400mm has a design that looks very similar to a PRO lens such as 40-150mm PRO or 300mm F4 PRO. However, once you hold the lens in hand, you will immediately tell this is different from a true PRO lens - it is not made of full metal construction. The Olympus 100-400mm is made of part plastic and part metal. Nevertheless, the build is robust, there are no creaky parts, and the lens does not feel wobbly, it feels dense and solid in hand. The build quality is impressive for one of Olympus' largest lenses, and definitely a huge step up from other non-PRO lenses at the moment. You can also tell it is better built than 75-300mm or 12-200mm lenses. Being a lens that weighs significantly more than camera bodies from Micro Four Thirds (1.12kg), the lens does come with a remove-able tripod collar, which is made of full metal. There is also a plastic lens hood, some may complain about the hood being plastic, but I find this to be a prudent decision from Olympus - the plastic hood is made to be sacrificed in case the lens falls down hard onto a hard ground, protecting the glass inside the lens and the camera body from damage due to impact.