OM System OM-1 Mark II Debuts with Live Graduated ND Function

OM System OM-1 Mark II Debuts with Live Graduated ND Function


Bethlehem, PA—OM Digital Solutions Corporation introduced its new flagship mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera (ILC). The OM System OM-1 Mark II is a Micro Four Thirds (MFT) system-compliant ILC boasting a Live GND (graduated ND) photography function.

Moreover, this feature utilizes computational photography to replicate the effects of a half ND filter. Consequently, photographers can adjust filter steps and types in real-time through the camera’s electronic viewfinder or rear LCD. In addition, for photographers working in rugged outdoor conditions, the OM-1 Mark II has an IP53-class splash- and dustproof design. Further, the company built the camera’s magnesium alloy body to withstand freezing temperatures down to 14°F.

OM System OM-1 Mark II Key Features

The OM-1 Mark II employs a 20-megapixel stacked BSI (backside-illuminated) Live MOS sensor and the latest TruePic X image processor. The company says this pairing delivers the highest quality images ever produced by an OM System camera. Plus, an enhanced AWB algorithm helps deliver vivid color reproduction, even in challenging lighting conditions.

OM System OM-1 Mark II

Additionally, the OM-1 Mark II uses 5-axis in-body image stabilization (IS) to improve shake compensation up to 8.5 steps (body alone). And 5-axis sync IS broadens opportunities for handheld shooting using compatible lenses.

Notable is the ILC’s Live GND (graduated ND) shooting function. Computational photography replicates the effects of using a half ND to control brightness and darkness within the image. Moreover, this tech enables users to adjust filter steps (GND2, GND4, or GND8) and types (soft, medium, hard) in real-time through the EVF or LCD monitor. “This innovative approach allows for precise customization of the effect’s position and angle, empowering photographers to craft their envisioned images effortlessly. Without the need for physical filters attached to the lens, this feature enables photographers to leverage half ND effects, even with lenses lacking filter threads,” announced OM System. What’s more, the camera enhances the upper limit for step numbers in popular Live ND shooting to ND128.

Furthermore, other special imaging functions include 50M handheld high-res shot mode and 80M tripod high-res shot mode. Both generate high-resolution images that surpass sensor limitations by merging multiple images and reducing noise by nearly two ISO steps. They also enable RAW recording at 14 bits. Complementing these features are computational photography functions such as live composite, which selectively illuminates brightened areas, and focus stacking, which controls the depth of field for subject focus and depth of field.

Artificial Intelligence Autofocus

Developed via deep learning technologies, OM System’s AI-detection AF system was improved to recognize a greater variety of subjects. They include humans, formula racing cars, motorcycles, airplanes, helicopters, trains, birds as well as common animals like dogs and cats. This also strengthens face priority/eye priority AF, which now identifies subjects even when in profile, facing away or obscured by hidden facial features.

OM System OM-1 Mark II

The AF system also works with the camera’s TruePic X processor to provide instantaneous real-time detection and tracking of subject movements. This capability now extends to follow and focus on details like driver’s helmets or the eyes of birds and other animals. In fact, the system can detect and track up to eight subjects.

In addition, the OM-1 Mark II features pro capture mode. Photographers can initiate recording at the halfway press of the shutter button (1st release). The ILC will record and store previous frames from the moment the shutter button is fully pressed (2nd release). This helps ensure they don’t miss fleeting moments due to their reaction time. Moreover, this function enables high-speed sequential shooting at up to 120 frames per sec during AF/AE lock and approximately 50 fps during AF/AE tracking.

Complementing this is an expanded buffer memory. As a result, the camera can retrospectively capture 99 frames in pro capture mode—an increase from the OM-1’s 70 frames. Further, specs state that in sequential shooting, the OM-1 Mark II captures 219 frames in JPEG format or 213 frames in RAW shooting at 120 fps (upping the OM-1’s 92 frames).

Additional Features

The camera also has a 5.76-million-dot OLED viewfinder with 0.83x magnification, a 0.005-sec minimal display delay and 120-fps display performance. This helps enable photographers to view subjects even in low light as well as preview images before activating the shutter. Additionally, the EVF features an antifogging coating.

Another feature is enhanced right-hand menu usability by assigning the trash barrel button as a menu shortcut. Plus, AF/AE tracking high-speed sequential shooting settings now include 12.5-fps and 16.7-fps options. Further, when shooting continuously at 25 fps or lower, the minimum shutter speed is set at 1/160 sec.

The camera is also compatible with UVC (USB Video Class)/UAC (USB Audio Class) for connection to a PC for webcam use. Other niceties are vertical video capture, for social media platforms, and an improved grip surface.

OM System will ship the OM-1 Mark II beginning in late February. It will have a suggested retail price of $2,399.99 and is available for preorder. The OM-1 Mark II kit, which includes the M.Zuiko Digital ED 12–40mm f/2.8 Pro II lens, will have an SRP of $2,999.99.

OM-1 Mark II Accessories

To augment the functionality of the new ILC, OM System is also offering OM Capture Version 3.1 camera control software. It serves as a camera control for computers, catering to the needs of studio photography. It facilitates image transfer via Wi-Fi while also supporting high-speed communication within the 5GHz band. Additionally, it allows power supply via USB while controlling the camera. OM-1-MArk-II-with-app

Moreover, the OM Image Share smartphone app (OI.Share) establishes a Wi-Fi connection to the camera, for transfer data and remote operation. Photographers can also use the OI.Share to update the firmware on the camera body.

BLX-1 Lithium-Ion Rechargeable Battery

One BLX-1 battery is included with the OM-1 Mark II. An additional, separately sold battery retails for $99.99. This high-capacity Li-ion battery offers 2,280 mAh and has a recharge cycle of 500 times (based on CIPA tests).

BCX-1 Lithium-Ion Battery Charger

Priced at $149.99, the BCX-1 charges up to two BLX-1 batteries simultaneously.

HLD-10 Power Battery Holder

With an SRP of $349.99, the power battery holder delivers IP53-class dustproof and splashproof protection when attached to the OM-1 Mark II. Moreover, it provides the same controls in both the vertical and horizontal orientations. When using two BLX-1 rechargeable batteries in the camera and the HLD-10, approximately 950 shots are captured.

RM-WR1 Wireless Remote Control

This wireless remote-control has an SRP of $499.99 and features IP57 class splash- and dustproof construction. It allows remote shooting within a 16-foot range from the OM-1 Mark II. It also incorporates an energy-efficient design employing Bluetooth Low Energy for communication as well as enables video start and stop functions. Additionally, this accessory doubles as a wired remote control when connected using the included cable.