20MP Four Thirds sensor | On-sensor phase detection | UHD and DCI 4K

What we like:

  • Very good image quality
  • Excellent image stabilization
  • Fast continuous shooting w/AF
  • Best-in-class weather-sealing

What we don't:

  • Image quality not as good as peers with larger sensors
  • Continuous AF not best-in-class
  • EVF is relatively low-res, lacks contrast
The OM-D E-M1 Mark III is a compact Micro Four Thirds camera targeted toward sports and action photographers. In addition to its speedy shooting, the camera also has built-in image stabilization, which may provide over seven stops of shake reduction. The 'IBIS' system also allows for 80MP photos when using a tripod and 50MP handheld.
The DSLR-shaped E-M1 III has exceptional build quality and is weather-sealed to IPX1 standards. Its numerous buttons are customizable, as are many items on its fully articulating LCD. The camera has a large electronic viewfinder with just average resolution. There are two SD card slots on the E-M1 III, but only one supports UHS-II speeds. Battery life is about average.
The E-M1 III strikes an excellent balance between capability and size/weight. It's extremely well-built, packed with all sorts of useful features and has a huge family of glass.
The E-M1 III has on-sensor phase detection which can be tweaked to keep up with a variety of subjects, even at 18 fps, with decent reliability. It also has a relatively deep buffer. Face and eye detection work with impressive reliability. However, traditional subject AF tracking is not.
The E-M1 III produces lovely looking JPEG and Raw files, but larger-sensored cameras offer better dynamic range and resolution. However, for static scenes, the E-M1 III's high-res mode can produce incredibly sharp 80MP Raw files.
The E-M1 III captures both DCI and UHD 4K. We encountered some motion artifacts when capturing DCI 4K due to a lower-than-advertised bit rate, but the footage stills impresses. There are also numerous capture tools, plus support for 8-bit Log footage. And highly effective image stabilization makes the E-M1 III an especially good choice for handheld shooting.
Striking an excellent balance between capability and size/weight, the E-M1 III is extremely well-built, packed with all sorts of cool features and has a huge family of glass to support it. The size advantage comes at the cost of some image quality from its Four Thirds sensor, but in situations in which portability or lens 'reach' are more important, the E-M1 III is among the best cameras you can go with.

Jeff Keller

Studio Test Scene

Sample gallery: