Classic Kit – Olympus OM10 review

The Olympus OM10 is by no means a classic go-to wedding camera – it’s certainly a great camera though. If you’re after a film camera to play all hipster with, this is a great one to look at. In fact, it’s so good Olympus has just come out with a digital version…

Olympus OM10 review

The OM10 first went on sale in 1979 and as such this camera is 35 years old! That makes it 9 years older than Rach and I. This was in fact my Grandad’s old camera. “So what?” you might say. I’ve come over all hipster with my film camera. The reality of it is though, that this is a great camera. Without the optional Manual Shutter Speed selector add-on, this camera is permanently AE. So you set the aperture, faff about manual focusing and hit the shutter release. What more could you want?

Olympus OM10 review

The viewfinder in this camera can only be described as expansive – even though it’s only 93% coverage; 5% less than our 70D. With the standard Zuiko 50mm f1.8 clamped firmly to the front, you have loads of light to play with, which is just as well, because the focusing prism eats through quite a bit of that. Much like the more modern Eg-S high-accuracy focusing screen available for some of the EOS range, the OM10 has a split-prism focusing screen. Simply play with the focus until the tiny triangles around the central circle stop shimmering and the image lines up. Frankly it’s almost easier than focusing a more modern SLR with AF-confirm.

Handling-wise, coming from an SLR, the big thing missing is the grip. Back before you had to put a huge battery in an SLR, manufacturers didn’t need to bother with the huge hand grip on the front of the camera. As a result you just got a sturdy looking cuboid with a lens on the front. It’s lovely to hold, and to say it’s 35 years old you wouldn’t know it. This camera hasn’t aged at all. It’s classic industrial design fits in great with all the new mirrorless cameras around today.

So what about image quality? Everyone who owns one seems to think they’re great, which is probably why there’s so many around. Lomography love the OM10 too!

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4 Comments

  1. 5th January 2021 / 12:01 pm

    I have just dug mine out of the back of a cupboard. Unused since I “went digital” in around 2005!

    With Lockdown 3 hitting the UK from tonight, it is time for a project.

    Certainly things have changed. Film now not so cheap. Gone are the chances of £1.99 processing and a free film to use to keep the whole business rolling along. and back to that butterfly in the stomach feeling as you peeled the envelope open to take out the wallet of prints and negs….

    • vp_admin
      21st January 2021 / 9:23 pm

      Oh yes I remember those days! It’s mad how digital has changed everything. I still check the back of the camera to see what the photo looks like and check the focus haha I quite regularly say I don’t know how wedding photographers coped with the pressure of not being able to see it when they take it!

  2. thomas steadman
    10th March 2021 / 5:57 pm

    Hello there. I am considerably older than you two. My first camera at ten years old was a brownie box, then a starmite, then an halina. (Apologies to missing some capitol letters. My fingers do not work quite do well and I can not keep going backwards and forwards. Oops d should not be there). Need a break now. I have used and built up a small collection of various shapes and sizes of cameras, but not used them so much recently. You mention Covid, all rather unsettling and devastating to do many people. I too had a project and dig out my Yashica FX7, put a roll of Ilford FP4 in and off I went into the garden through the house into the attic and dangerously leaning out of the first floor window. I did not realise there was so much to photograph in four walls and through windows. I will send them for processing soon. Oops I instead of u. I will now go to eBay to purchase an OM2. All the reviews seem positive. Never used or owned an olympus, this should be good. If you have managed to read to the end then thank you. My daughters accuse me of rambling on. What the heck. All of you out there take care.

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