Taken while Photographing the National Mall with the OM-1
Infrared,  Photo Gear

Olympus OM-D E-M10 – The Take Everywhere Infrared Camera

I rarely go out only for Infrared photography.  But I do like to take an infrared camera with me just in case I find a subject that works for infrared. 

In this blog, I’ll discuss the features of the Olympus OM-D E-M10 that make it suitable for Infrared, and share some photographs from my infrared converted E-M10 Mark III that were taken with it brought along as a second camera. All of these infrared photographs were processed in Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom and converted to Black and White with Silver Efex Pro available in the Nik Collection by DxO.

The small size of the Olympus OM-D E-M10 makes it perfect to bring along as a second, infrared camera.  Paired with the Olympus 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 EZ Pancake lens, it can easily fit in your jacket or vest pocket.

I’ve converted an Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark III to infrared, but the Mark II and Mark IV will work as well.  You can pick up a used E-M10 for a relatively inexpensive price.  Also check out the Olympus Outlet for deals on refurbished models.

Taken while driving to Blackwater NWR for Bird Photography
Taken while driving to Blackwater NWR for Bird Photography

What Makes the Olympus OM-D E-M10 a Good Choice for Infrared Photography?

  • Size and Weight.  Weighing much less than a pound and less than 5 inches long, the E-M10 is easy to carry around as a second camera that is converted to infrared.  Below are the weight and size specifications for the OM-D E-M10 Mark II, III, IV.
FeatureE-M10 Mark IIE-M10 Mark IIIE-M10 Mark IV
Weight with Battery13.76 oz / 390 g14.46 oz / 410 g13.51 oz / 383 g
Size120 x 83 x 47 mm / 4.72 x 3.27 x 185 in.122 x 84 x 50mm / 4.8 x 3.31 x 1.97 in.122 x 84 x 49mm 4.8 x 3.31 x 1.93 in.

Full Specifications for the E-M10 Mark II, III, and IV

  • Fully Functional Interchangeable Lens Camera with Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, and Manual shooting modes.
  • For a small package, the E-M10 Mark II and III have 17MP, and the Mark IV has 20MP just like the OM-1 and E-M1 Series cameras.
  • Customizable Buttons that can be set up using the Gear Icon on the Super Control Panel.  The E-M10 Mark II has 3 customizable buttons, the Mark III has 2, and the Mark IV has 3. I use fn1 for Focus Peaking and fn2 for MF / AF toggle on my E-M10 Mark III.
  • The E-M10 has some of the advanced camera functions of higher end OM-D cameras like Live Composite, Live Time, Focus Bracketing, Exposure Bracketing, and HDR.
Taken on a Macro Photography Hike
Taken on a Macro Photography Hike

Recommended Accessory

If you are going to use the Olympus 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 EZ Pancake lens with the E-M10 for infrared photography, I’d recommend buying a lens hood.  I do get quite a bit of lens flare while shooting in the relative direction of the sun using the 14-42mm EZ lens.  An inexpensive screw in Lens Hood can be purchased from retailers like Amazon.

If you wear a baseball cap, this can also be used in a pinch by holding the cap over the top of the lens.

Taken while Driving the Backroads Home from a Bird Photography Outing
Taken while Driving the Backroads Home from a Bird Photography Outing

Infrared Conversions

Two of the top infrared conversion services are Lifepixel and Kolarivision.  I had my E-M10 Mark III converted by Lifepixel and had a Canon 6D converted by Kolarivision.  I’ve had good luck with both services.

LifePixel offers 6 different IR filters for your IR conversion.  Visit LifePixel’s Infrared Filter Comparison Page for a detailed explanation of the filter choices.  I converted my E-M10 with an Enhanced Color IR filter (665nm) and my Canon 6D with a Super Color IR filter (590nm).  Both of these infrared filters give you the flexibility of Black and White and False Color infrared processing.

LifePixel also sells already converted cameras on their website which saves you the time and hassle of packing and shipping your camera to them.  At the time that I wrote this blog, a new infrared converted OM-D E-M10 Mark III was selling for $899.  Used Olympus cameras can be purchased for an even lower price on their website.

Taken during a Macro Photography Hike
Taken during a Macro Photography Hike

Summary

The Olympus OM-D E-M10’s small size and light weight for a full featured mirrorless camera make it a great camera to convert for infrared photography. Since I have converted my E-M10 Mark III to infrared, I hardly ever use my infrared converted Canon 6D. The E-M10 is just too handy to carry along in your pocket.

Written by Martin Belan

Related Posts

Why Buy an Olympus OM-D E-M10 as a Backup or Second Camera?
Comparing the Specifications of the Olympus E-M10 Mark IV, III, and II
False Color Infrared Photography Processing Tips

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