Olympus to digitally revive OM line

Kyodo

Olympus Corp. plans to revive its once popular OM brand for a new digital mirrorless interchangeable-lens camera it plans to release this spring, industry sources said.

The company is hoping the new product will symbolize its recovery from the ongoing accounting scandal stemming from the coverup of bubble economy investment losses, they said.

Olympus launched the OM-1 single-lens reflex film camera in 1973. The OM-1 was a hit thanks to its small size and durability, and the line thrived for about 30 years.

The new OM-D model will be offered in the United States, Europe and and parts of Asia as its top model in digital mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras. Prices will surpass ¥100,000 in Japan.

The new model resembles the original OM-1 and features high-speed autofocus and image stabilization functions, as well as 16-megapixel resolution.

In December, Olympus had the largest share of the domestic market for digital mirrorless interchangeable-lens cameras, which are gaining in popularity thanks to their smaller size and lighter weight, according to marketing research firm BCN Inc.