An Olympus full-frame? “HECK no…” (new Olympus interview)


In a recent interview with Imaging Resource, Aki Murata (Vice President Sales and Marketing) from Olympus confirmed that the company has no plans to develop a full-frame camera:

So where does that leave Micro Four Thirds? With all the focus on full-frame mirrorless of late, will Olympus bow to market pressure and develop a full-frame product line as well?

An Olympus full-frame? "HECK no..."

Murata-san laid out Olympus’ strategy of small, lightweight, and “ultimately reliable” cameras when I met with him at PhotoPlus back in late October.
Per the headline, Murata-san's response to my question on whether there might be full-frame cameras in Olympus' future wasn't just no, but really, seriously no! He not only made a very strong business case for not doing so, but explained that Micro Four Thirds is actually a direct expression of an overarching product strategy Olympus has been executing on for over 50 years.

Olympus has filed multiple patents for full-frame mirrorless lenses. The rumor is that Olympus was invited to join the L-mount Alliance, but they declined.

Update - here is a recap of the interview from 43addict:

 

  • Olympus has no plans to go full frame
  • They have been focused on small camera bodies for 50 years
  • Olympus focuses on compactness, lightweight, and “ultimate reliability” due to a mandate by Yoshihisa Maitani
  • m43 fits this philosophy perfectly
  • The OM in OM-1 stands for Olympus-Maitani
  • Nature and wildlife photography has the most variation and is a huge market for them.
  • m43 is ideal for shooting long because you save a lot of weight and size
  • The companies moving towards full frame are leaving behind the photographers that care about size/weight.
  • Olympus weather sealing is a cut above the rest
  • They subject the E-M1 Mark II to 2.5 inches per hour for 10 minutes per side, they test 6 sides which equal 60 minutes of water exposure in all.
  • After the testing, they disassemble the camera to see if it passed their testing, which requires the camera to have no water inside.
  • If they find any water inside they figure out where it came from and test it again.
  • Olympus is happy that the competition left them with the huge compact high-quality market virtually to themselves.
  • m43 has the most expansive mirrorless lens selection so it should be fine going forward.
  • Panasonic will likely slow their m43 development while Olympus continues to invest heavily.
  • Olympus has the clearest strategy and arguably the most security going forward.

 

Via Imaging Resource

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