・For OM SYSTEM OM-1 Product Information, please click here:
"OM SYSTEM OM-1" Embedded DynaFont Case Interview
We interviewed Katsuhisa Kawaguchi and Takeshi Kawawa from the R&D department at OM Digital Solutions Corporation who designed the OM SYSTEM OM-1. They will share their thoughts about DynaFont's King Gothic Condensed font that the camera utilizes.
-Thank you both for your time! Could you please give a brief introduction of the OM SYSTEM OM-1 camera?
Katsuhisa Kawaguchi: First of all, OM Digital Solutions Corp. is a company founded after spinning off from Olympus Corporation's Imaging Division. We develop imaging products that involve technologies such as precision optics and digital image processing technologies. In addition to our main product, digital cameras, we also have audio equipment like voice recorders as well as other related services and solutions.
The camera we chose to embed DynaComware's King Gothic DynaFont is OM SYSTEM's flagship camera, OM-1, which launched on March 18, 2022. OM-1 is an interchangeable lens camera conforms to the Micro Four Thirds System standard. The product's concept is "uniqueness"; it is lightweight, small in size and has high mobility. Moreover, it also balances high image quality with great performance, allowing photographers to unleash their creativity anytime and anywhere. OM-1 has various practical functions. You can enjoy sequential shooting up to 50 fps with AF/AE tracking and up to 120 fps with AF/AE locked. In addition, the OM-1 offers computational photography which utilizes digital image processing technology in camera that traditionally required a computer, making advanced digital expressions easier. We put great emphasis on portability when it comes to OM-1. We developed the camera with the concept of enabling its users take it with them without second thoughts, even during camping trips and outdoor activities. The camera also has many high-end functions, including a 5-axis Image Stabilization, which allows hand-held shooting without a tripod and shooting at slow shutter speeds. Moreover, it also has a "night mode" that enables the electronic viewfinder and rear displays to recognize the Milky Way even under dim conditions. When one finds it difficult to focus on stars and other objects, "Starry Sky AF" comes in handy. Last but not least, another feature that we have to bring up is our latest UI upgrades by utilizing DynaFont King Gothic Condensed font.
ⓒ 2022 OM Digital Solutions Corporation
-Thank you so much for using our font in your latest product. Now, how did you come to know about DynaComware's Embedded DynaFont?
Katsuhisa Kawaguchi: We have collaborated before, more than 10 years ago, when we were still working for Olympus. There was a product we launched that used DynaComware's Bitmap font. We have been partners since then. In light of our collaborations, we anticipated DynaComware to provide suitable fonts for our products.
-Thank you very much for your long-term support and usage of DynaComware's Embedded DynaFont, it is our honor! If you are willing, could you please share the reason as to why you chose the DynaFont King Gothic Condensed font among so many other fonts?
Takeshi Kawawa: At the development stage, we decided to implement a UI upgrade, especially regarding the camera menu. We paid high attention to usability, whether items could be easily found and searched for, as well as whether the user can smoothly set up the camera. We hope that not only existing customers of the OM-D series, but also new users can clearly understand each and every feature. Furthermore, we received feedback from some of our customers regarding current products, mentioning that the script size was too small on the camera menu which makes it hard to decipher. Hence, providing a comfortable reading experience became one of our objectives during development. However, if we enlarge only the script, the amount of information we are able to display is bound to shrink. Moreover, our current products already support many languages, but OM-1 supports many more, up to 18 languages. When a product supports many languages, we found that almost every other language expands more than Japanese when it comes to layout. This means that there is a limit in enlarging the script, so internally, we had this idea to both condense script but also to maintain its readability.
Katsuhisa Kawaguchi: We proposed our needs to DynaComware and you suggested that we use King Gothic Condensed font. The DynaComware engineering team even worked alongside our design engineers to create a customized font. The curves of numbers and many other changes were made flexibly, and this is all thanks to you.
Takeshi Kawawa: Taking the readability of script on the digital camera menu as well as trying to avoid Chinese characters from blurring due to having too many strokes into consideration, King Gothic Condensed font allows for lengthy information and descriptions to display clearly. There is no need to adjust the font size to read clearly. As a result, everyone in the R&D department agreed unanimously on the font.
-I'd like to know, if you feel comfortable sharing with us, if there are any other decisive factors in choosing the font?
Takeshi Kawawa: In addition to being a customizable font, it is a great advantage that your font can support so many languages, as the OM-1 is launched globally. Not to mention that DynaComware also provides an outline font bank, your engineers always respond quickly to our needs. This is also an important reason for choosing the font. Customer support is swift and timely.
Katsuhisa Kawaguchi: Your swift and timely response to our needs has left a deep impression on me, I am truly grateful we can work together on this.
-Thank you for your recognition! We will tell the engineers that were responsible for the project of your high remarks. How have the users responded, after the launch of the camera?
Katsuhisa Kawaguchi: We were very particular about font displays when it comes to OM-1. For instance, to ensure readability, script was outlined if one uses viewfinder to capture a scene. However, scripts won't be outlined if the background color is simple, like when you turn on the menu. Additionally, when one uses Live View, to ensure that script size can be larger when displayed on the rear control display of the camera, script weight was adjusted accordingly. In the various scenarios I have just mentioned, being able to change script weight and outlining scripts at ease was a huge convenience for us.
We have also received a lot of customer feedback, such as "It's easier to read the display now," "I can read with ease now," "the menu is straightforward," of course, "Script is clear" was also mentioned. The camera was also launched globally, and we also received similar positive responses. One customer even said "The script is now bigger, like we requested". It's a huge relief that the font received so much positive feedback from our customers.
-Lastly, I hope you could share your future outlook of OM Digital's products. Of course, we are more than happy to know more about your thoughts and hopes for DynaComware if you have any.
Katsuhisa Kawaguchi: Overall, we are very satisfied with both the font itself and the swift responses from your engineers. In addition, you were always able to understand each party from different standpoints, including the design engineers and expectations of the R&D department. This is more than what we could have asked for. Thank you so very much!
I look forward to future partnerships in developing new products. Together, we can launch products with great quality! Please kindly continue to support us in the future.
-Balancing high performance and high portability, OM-1 is the one and only interchangeable lens camera, with great UI designs! We sincerely thank you for sharing with us today!
▲Japanese menu showcasing "DFKing Gothic Condensed Japanese font (customized edition)"
ⓒ 2022 OM Digital Solutions Corporation
▲Multilingual menu showcasing "DFKing Gothic Condensed Multilingual font (customized edition)"
ⓒ 2022 OM Digital Solutions Corporation
●DFKing Gothic condensed font provides 4 types of font width and 6 types of font weight.
●Features of the DFKing Gothic Condensed Font
●Comparison between DFKing Gothic and DFKing Gothic condensed font
Established: October 9, 2020
Address: 49-3, Takakuramachi, Hachioji-shi, Tokyo, 192-0033
OM Digital Solutions Corporation is a leading provider of award-winning digital imaging and audio solutions, noted for its precision optics and groundbreaking technologies.