Here’s the first photo showing a portion of the upcoming Olympus OM-D (it appears to be the shutter release, two dials, and buttons on the upper right hand corner of the camera). The high-end enthusiast camera will reportedly cost around $1,100 when it starts shipping in March. What are your observations based on this glimpse?
(via 43 Rumors)
We’re about three weeks away from the rumored February 8th unveiling of the Olympus OM-D — a new Micro Four Thirds camera designed in the style of old school Olympus OM SLRs. The mockup above shows what the camera might look like based on the latest spec rumors. The 16MP camera will reportedly offer ISO 200-25600, a grip and a leather-covered surface, built-in flash, in-body image stabilization, a 610000-dot swiveling LCD screen, and speedy autofocus
(via blog.livedoor.jp via 43 Rumors)
There might be a giant corporate scandal hovering over its head, but that’s not stopping Olympus from planning big things for its digital camera lineup. The company has placed a giant full page advertisement in Amateur Photographer magazine with the headline “OH MY GOODNESS!”. 43 Rumors is reporting that the company will be announcing a new Micro Four Thirds camera around February 8th that’s part of the 40-year-old OM camera lineup — in other words, a digital mirrorless camera that’s beautifully retro-styled. A trademark application filed on January 3rd indicates that camera will be called the Olympus OM-D (D as in digital). Watch out Fujifilm: Olympus is coming for you!
(via 43 Rumors)
Image credit: Olympus OM-1n by Attila con la cámara
Reuters is reporting that US-based investment firm TPG Capital has expressed interest in pouring $1 billion into Olympus in a joint deal, and has notified other possible suitors including Sony, Canon, Fujifilm, and Panasonic.
Nearly all of Olympus’ profits are generated from its dominant 70 percent share of the global market for flexible diagnostic endoscopes. The steady cash flow from that business has allowed it to prop up its digital camera business, which is on course to lose money for a second straight year.
TPG would consider taking over the other less desirable parts of the firm to facilitate a deal. This could include the digital camera operation, which is in need of a major overhaul, including job cuts, the person said.
It’s interesting that the camera division is one of the “less desirable parts” of Olympus, since that’s what most consumers know the company for.
TPG willing to invest $1 billion in Olympus [Reuters]
Image credit: OLYMPUS E-P1 by DORONKO
Olympus recently filed a patent in Japan for a vari-angle LCD screen. While that’s not exactly groundbreaking, the illustrations in the patent appears to show some kind of medium format digital camera. What’s more, it looks nearly identical to the Samsung digital medium format prototypes that emerged earlier this year.
Black-suited investigators raided and searched 20 different sites today over Olympus’ ongoing accounting scandal. Among the sites searched were the company’s headquarters, the office buildings of subsidiary companies, and the homes of executives involved in the fraud. The company is also looking to raise cash by issuing $1.3 billion in new shares. Sony, Fujifilm, Panasonic, Samsung, and Hoya have been named as companies who are potentially interested in snapping up a piece of Olympus.
Olympus offices, homes raided in accounting scandal [Reuters]
Olympus has something big up its sleeve. In an interview with Impressjapan, manager Mr. Ogawa revealed that the company is working on a new mirrorless camera that features an “epoch-making” viewfinder — presumably one that’s even more advanced than the hybrid viewfinder found on the Fujifilm X100. The upcoming viewfinder sounds like it’ll also be some kind of fusion between electronic and optical. There’s not much that’s know about the technology at the moment, but we should be hearing more about it very soon.
(via 43 Rumors via TechRadar)
Image credit: Viewfinder by Nils Geylen
Olympus’ stock price has been recovering quite nicely after an internal probe found no evidence of yakuza involvement (though they did slam upper management as “rotten”). However, rumors of possible takeover attempts persist. An article published by Bloomberg today reported that Fujifilm may be in the hunt for the beleaguered company:
Fujifilm, which makes equipment for medical scans, has been reported as a possible bidder for Japanese camera maker Olympus Corp. Yamamoto, who also is a board member at Fujifilm, declined to comment on a possible buyout of Olympus today.
Fujifilm Chief Executive Officer Shigetaka Komori said last month it was too early to discuss Olympus issues while the third-party panel was still probing the fraud at the camera maker.
Fujifilm has received a lot of praise lately for its sleek X series cameras, and could take another big step towards becoming a digital camera juggernaut if it somehow landed Olympus.
(via Bloomberg via Mirrorless Rumors)
Image credit: Olympus Trip XB401 by Arty Smokes (deaf mute)
Olympus and Panasonic might be cofounders of the Micro Four Thirds movement, but the companies appear to be taking different approaches toward 3D photography. While Panasonic offers a special 3D lens that contains two lenses, a newly discovered Olympus patent shows an even more novel approach: adding a second lens to a camera via its hot shoe. Simply stick the lens on and turn your camera sideways to transform it into a stereoscopic 3D camera!
(via Photo Rumors via PopPhoto)
It looks like Olympus ex-CEO Michael Woodford will be getting his wish after all as the Olympus scandal continues to unfold. A day after an independent panel issued a report that slammed the company’s top management as being rotten (though at the same time finding no links to organized crime), the entire board of directors has indicated that it will step down. Perhaps confident that the company will soon be back on the right track, investors have pushed the stock price back up to over ¥1,100 — up from its 52 week low of ¥424 back in early November.
Image credit: board room by @MSG