Choosing Your Perfect M43 Camera & Lenses

Panasonic G9 Digital Camera and Lens

The M43 cameraOpens in a new tab. range has been steadily growing over the last 11 years since its inception, so your choices aren’t exactly limited when you finally do decide to give the format a go.

If you’re dipping your toes into the M43 format here are a few of the top considerations you need to focus on when making your decision.

M43 Camera Pixel Density

Over the years the cameras in the M43 classification have evolved as technology develops, but manufacturers continue to make older generations available.

As you shop, you will come across cameras which are decidedly the last generation.

12MP sensors are probably due for retirement, while 16MP cameras sit somewhere around the middle of the market.

It takes a very practiced eye to determine any difference in image quality in 16MP images, and most photographers will be pleased with the results.

20MP sensors are the new kids on the block and usually come with better dynamic ranges, higher low light quality, and sharper JPEG renderings.

If the price is a factor, then there’s no shame in checking out a few of last gens offerings, but the latest 20MP models are where you will find the standout performers.

M43 Camera Body Styles

Some photographers enjoy shooting with a less cluttered interface for simplicity while others prefer the accessibility of external dials and buttons to tweak camera settings.

The M43 market has developed sufficiently to offer a range to suit all types.

Simplified external controls will usually mean dipping into touch screen menus to change options, which can be a lot more intuitive for newcomers but it also means that all shots will be taken at arm’s length.

If you would rather use a viewfinder to line up your shots, a few of the recent models coming out include a built-in EVF, with controls directly accessible on the camera body via dials and buttons – no dipping into a string of menu choices required.

Micro Four Thirds Brand Choices

Regarding image quality, there is a fine line between OlympusOpens in a new tab. and PanasonicOpens in a new tab., with no clear winner.

For most people, this means brand choice won’t be the deciding factor; the final decision will have more to do with how the camera handles.

However, a lot of Panasonic models feature lens-only image stabilization, although they have recently been changing their stance on this.

Olympus, on the other hand, favors sensor-based stabilization, so it’s included in the body of the camera, but it still depends on the model.

M43 System Lenses

The M43 camera format has a lot more choice in lenses than any other mirrorless system, with quite a few exceptional performers, and none that would deserve a rating of less than good.

Primes are fully catered for, with equivalents for 24mm, 28mm, 35mm, 40mm, 50mm, 60mm, 90mm, 150mm, and 600mm in Full Frame terms.

If you can’t decide on a lens, then costs will soon add up, but you will appreciate the compact nature of M43 lenses when compared to typical DSLR variants.

M43 zoom lenses also provide many quality choices where you really can’t go wrong. From Olympus, you have 14-28mm, 24-70mm, 24-80mm, and 70-200mm.

For levels that rival pro DSLR quality there are also 80-300mm equivalents with f/2.8 apertures. Regardless of your price range, you will always come away with a good performer.

Perfect M43 Camera System Conclusion

When shopping for the perfect M43 cameraOpens in a new tab. to suit your style first decide on the body type, then review your stabilization options (whether you want it in the lens or in the body).

Performance-wise your choice will depend on whether you need cutting-edge technology or can sacrifice features and pixel density for a lower price. Throw in a few M43 lenses, and you will be good to go.

Watch “Terry Lane” explain why he has chosen M43s

John Kilmerstone

I'm an Aussie living in Japan who enjoys traveling and photography. Please visit this website and explore the wonderful world of Micro Four Thirds photography. Discover the advantages of carrying a small yet powerful camera system.

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