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Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III to feature 20MP sensor, launch in late September?

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III to feature 20MP sensor, launch in late September?
(Image credit: Future)

There is yet more chatter about one of the most gossip-worthy cameras on the horizon. The highly anticipated Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III looks set for a late summer reveal, and could be packing a 20MP sensor as well as a number of other changes to the E-M5 family. 

These apparently include a new image processor, a different battery, along with a body composed of different materials in order to make it more lightweight while retaining Olympus' famed weather-proofness. 

 What we expect: Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III was originally expected to be revealed in early August, but according to a report from 43 Rumors this has been pushed back to a late September or early October unveiling. 

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III will apparently possess the same sensor as the flagship E-M1 cameras

The Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III will apparently possess the same sensor as the flagship E-M1 cameras (Image credit: Future)

This corresponds with Olympus' own reassurance that an E-M5 successor would be on the way soon, along with the registration of a new camera from Olympus (under the product name "IM016") that is seems almost certain to be the upcoming body.

The website's sources also concur with our speculation that the E-M5 Mark III will possess the same 20.4MP sensor as the flagship Olympus OM-D E-M1X. However, they go one step further to suggest that the sensor will retain the flagship's 121-point phase detect autofocus system (the E-M5 series has, traditionally, only used contrast-detect AF). 

In addition, it reports that the camera may also benefit from a new image processor – likely to be called the TruePic XI, replacing the previous processor that debuted back in 2016.  

To make it lighter, the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III may use the smaller battery from the Olympus PEN E-PL9

To make it lighter, the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III may use the smaller battery from the Olympus PEN E-PL9 (Image credit: Future)

The rumor site also stated that the Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III would be a much lighter camera than its predecessor, thanks to being constructed of more plastic compounds, as well as using the smaller BLS-50 battery (currently used in the Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III and Olympus PEN E-PL9). 

These all seem like steps in the right direction for the E-M5 line, which has always positioned itself as a balance of performance and portability (compared to the flagship E-M1 series, which favored power over compactness). 

While these specs might even the playing field with the APS-C rivals, the real question remains whether the price will be as competitive… 

Read more:

Olympus OM-D E-M5 Mark III – what we expect
The best Olympus cameras in 2019
The best Micro Four Thirds lenses for your Olympus or Panasonic camera

James Artaius

The editor of Digital Camera World, James started working in the photographic industry in 2014 as an assistant to Damian McGillicuddy – successor to David Bailey as Principal Photographer for Olympus. In this time he shot for clients as diverse as Aston Martin Racing, Elinchrom and L'Oréal, in addition to shooting campaigns and product testing for Olympus. An Olympus and Canon user, James was previously technique editor on PhotoPlus: The Canon Magazine.