A speculation of course but I included, want to know or hope to see Olympus thrive in 2019 after a rather quiet 2018. It's difficult to foresee what's coming, especially with the micro four third market since now it seems Olympus and Black Magic are the only guys out there pushing this platform (sorry Panasonic, I would like to include you in the conversation since you and Mr Olympus were the pioneer of the platform but you have made it clear that, at least in short term, you will be focusing on full frame).
Technically, I can also exclude Black Magic because they are like Ninjas, appear when they want you to see them. So, back to Olympus. I have been an Olympus fan since the original OM-D E-M5 released back in 2012. That camera got my attention, even though I was already a seasoned Canon Pro for 6 years. I was playing with it and then fully switched at the end of 2016 when EM1 Mark II arrived. I never looked back.
So to me, Olympus is my buddy. I shot every single one of my paid jobs with EM1 Mark II and I thoroughly enjoyed my first full-on mirrorless experience and certainly didn't miss my heavy trolley used to haul around my Canon wedding gears (18 kg!!!) Now I can pack three bodies and all the lenses I ever need (I don't use them all) plus all the accessories in a backpack, still around only 8kg! To me, Olympus saved me (or my shoulder and my back).
Fast forward a couple of years, we are now expecting a brand new pro camera, a bigger camera (we'll soon find out) that will outpace the already lightning quick EM1 Mark II. Truthfully, I am all for it. I am the exact type of people Olympus is targeting, a professional photographer who needs a feature-packed light weight camera to perform. Ok, I am not ditching my EM1 Mark II anytime soon and it's a great camera, one of the greatest I've used (hence my switch over from Canon and Leica) but all mirrorless cameras are about technologies, pushing the envelop further, making our lives easier as a professional right? So I am hoping the new camera will fix a few things that I thought the EM1 Mark II couldn't satisfy me, which I did highlight in my earlier review last year. One thing I didn't mention in that review and also on my wishlist is a bigger and better EVF! As a spec-wearer, a bigger EVF and relief will help my shooting a lot more for sure. So better AF (speed, sensitivity in low light and tracking - hopefully better face and eye tracking), faster FPS, better video features, better IBIS (already quite insane) and more.
So until I get my hands on the camera, I don't want to pump myself too much and set my expectations too high in case it's the opposite, though I am certain it won't be judging from my previous Olympus experience.
But one question remains, as great as the EM1 Mark II is, still only a handful of lucky professionals (including me) believed and converted. It's photographers are a stubborn breed. They mostly stick with what they know and wouldn't like to try new things. Perhaps there's a bit of the brand loyalty thing going but Olympus has always been at the forefront in terms of camera and optics design since the 60's. They have always been a niche player, not aiming at the big pool. Their last attempt to target the pros was the original OM3 and 4 film cameras. They did try with their digital E series but never got very far due to the same bulky DSLR design despite the smaller sensor. So imagine Olympus pull all their resources developing this camera (is that why they were so quiet in 2018?), it has something to prove and I am hoping that they will succeed. I believe in the platform and also Olympus, but I, alone, can't tell the world just how great the system really is. Now, wait for my review of the EM1X because I am getting it, whenever it comes out.