Olympus XA4.

For some strange reason I’ve always been on a mission to look for a back up to the trusty Olympus Mju II, usually stopping short of getting another Mju II. There are many, many choices that meet this particular criteria and it seems such a waste not to add another to the short list of cameras I’ve tried. On one of those nights where one is illogically consumed by spontaneous midnight browsing, I came upon the fairly infrequently mentioned Olympus XA4 for significantly less than they like to go for on eBay.

The XA4 is neither an auto-focus camera like the Mju II nor a rangefinder like its extremely popular sibling XA. It uses zone focusing, something that used to throw me off constantly but now I relish in having gained the confidence to do this crazy guesswork after much positive experience with the Olympus Pen D3. The best difference that sets it apart from the others is the ability to focus up to 0.3m (although the shutter goes extremely slow at that range) and I’ll never say no to depth of field.

Kodak UltraMax 400 (expired), Olympus XA4

4 replies to “Olympus XA4.

  1. Looks like you had a ball with XA4. The last zone focus camera I can recall shooting was a Diana F+ toy camera that I put some fresh Tri-X 400 through and developed with Caffenol. Especially with wide lenses and narrow apertures zone focus can be a great option for street photography. Glad to have found your blog.


    1. Thanks Tobias! My first camera with zone focusing was the Lomography LC-A+ and for some reason I never fell in love with the photographs it took or the experience of using that camera. Glad that has changed now, though!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The third one from below, with stairs and huge overhead crossings… Great. Murky shirted color feels weirdly appropriate. Eerie yet comforting.


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