I spent almost 9 hours in the car yesterday with much of that time spent pondering the Olympus EM1 Mark ii versus the new Panasonic G9.
I am an Oly man at heart. Always have been. I love the colors and absolutely love Oly lenses. But dang it Panasonic has been really doing well with their recent cameras bodies and lenses (albeit for their overall lack of consistent visual design).
There are three things that I really dont like about the EM1ii and they apply to almost all Olympus cameras.
1 - The underspec’d EVF. Even at launch the EM1II EVF was under spec’d and now it really shows and undermines a premium spec camera. This is a huge mistake on Olympus’ part.
2 - Buttons everywhere
3 - Deep and complex menues
The new G9 hits every single unchecked box of the EM1ii, at least for me. I particularly like all the stills features and after shooting the EM1ii in the dark alot in 2017 the lighted features with small LCD of the G9 really speak to me. Not to mention the huge EVF and simpler controls & menues. While I love the EM1ii its easy for my eyes to wonder.
But....And there is a big but. But, Panasonic has nothing to compete with the Olympus 40-150 2.8 Pro lens. Sure Panasonic has a rumored Panaleica 50-200 coming but that isn't even announced yet much less delivered any time soon. Sure you can use the amazing Olympus 40-150 but not with all the capabilty of Panasonic DFD focusing technology. This is the one big hang up I personally have. Aside from the lens gole and the fact I think the camera is kinda ugly, the overall package sure looks good.
I have handled the camera only for a moment at a local demo and it is an absolutely beautifully spec’d camera that I likely will own one day. The EM1ii still stands out though with Oly color, live time and a personal familiarity that makes it unlikely that I can let it go. I will absolutely shoot them side by side and compare. Soon I hope as the Panasonic is supposed to ship mid January.
More to come on this subject.