What will the pain points be if I switch to the E-M1 from the E-3?

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William Warby
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What will the pain points be if I switch to the E-M1 from the E-3?
4 weeks ago

I have an Olympus E-3 and various Oly lenses, flashes etc. It's served me well over the years but I'm coming to the point where I want to make some upgrades.

When it first became clear that Oly were winding down their efforts in original 4/3 lens and body development I tried a friend's EP-1 and hated it (the feel, the build quality, the viewfinder, the lack of quality micro lenses at the time) and assumed I'd eventually have to jump ship to Nikon.

A few years later and the E-M1 looks pretty compelling. The lens line-up has improved considerably and as I'm getting older and fatter, the appeal of dragging a 20lb bag of lenses around has diminished considerably. Moving to the EM-1 would also be much easier financially, since I could shift to the smaller lenses gradually. However, the allure of affordable full-frame bodies from Nikon is compelling and I'm still not sure if sticking with Oly is the best strategy. I'd be very grateful to hear from anyone who has made the leap to micro 4/3 after having similar doubts.

In terms of priorities, I do a lot of macro stuff - often indoors, and a lot of wildlife with the 50-200. The M.ZUIKO 60mm f/2.8 macro lens would be high on my list of priorities. I guess I might let go of the 50-200 when the micro 40-150 f/2.8 comes out next year but until then I need it to perform. My favourite lens is the 50mm f/2 macro which I use for portraits as much as for macro work so I'd be interested in how that lens in particular performs on an m4/3 body.

My biggest concerns - perhaps unfounded in some cases - are:

- Performance of my existing lenses with an m4/3 body - particularly the 12-60, 50-200 SWD and 50mm macro (I also have the 7-14, 70-300 and 35mm macro but they rarely see the light of day)

- Compatibility with my FL-50R flashes on-camera and remote (manual mode) using Pixel Pawns.

- Non-optical view-finder. My head is disgusted by the idea, the reviews seem to say otherwise. I haven't used a modern high quality one before.

- balance and comfort holding a large lens on a small body. I have one of those hand grip straps on my E-3 and often carry it one-handed with a large lens attached. Can you get that kind of strap for the EM-1?

- The future of the standard. To date it seems Oly have released only one pro m4/3 lens with three more planned for 2014, which appear to have been delayed to 2015. I'm not going back to lenses with max apertures like f/6.3 at the long end so I'll be depending on the release of more high grade lenses to replace my 4/3 set one by one.

 William Warby's gear list:William Warby's gear list
Olympus E-3 Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 50mm 1:2.0 Macro Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 12-60mm 1:2.8-4.0 SWD Olympus Zuiko Digital ED 70-300mm 1:4.0-5.6 Olympus Zuiko Digital 35mm 1:3.5 Macro +7 more
Olympus E-3 Olympus E-M1
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