Conclusion: The Olympus PEN E-PL3 delivers impressive performance when it comes to speed, but is held back by noisy images at higher ISO settings and a kit lens that delivers so-so sharpness at longer focal lengths.
Pros: Tilting 3-inch LCD. Fast autofocus system. In-camera artistic filters. Accessory port for optional EVF.
Cons: High noise at ISO 1600 and above. No built-in flash. Menu system is unintuitive and can be slow.
Summary: The Olympus E-PL3 offers ample external control points, a tilting LCD screen, and fast AF performance along with high image quality in a small, stylish package. Although the complexity of the menu system may require an initial learning curve for new users, the E-PL3 is a pleasant-handling and very...
Pros: Very good low ISO image quality and resolution, Fast and responsive operation, Fast, accurate autofocus, Full HD AVCHD video, Attractive styling and solid, metal construction, A high number of external controls for its body size, Tilt-screen LCD, AF assist lamp, In-camera Raw edit capability, Hig...
Cons: High ISO noise performance lagging behind competitors' newer sensors, Overly aggressive default noise filter setting for JPEG output, Digital IS for video capture can introduce unnatural-looking footage, Size and positioning of control dial makes its use somewhat awkward, Lack of a hand grip make...
Excerpt: Olympus has continued to expand its Micro Four Thirds (MFT) repertoire with new models for its PEN series. While the manufacturer might be finding itself in the news for, ahem, less than exemplary corporate behavior , its cameras measure up.
Pros: Convenient tilt-out screen, Super fast, quiet AF system, High image quality, Impressively slim body
Cons: Sits awkwardly—body is weighed down by the lens, No automatic playback, No pop-up flash
Summary: For those of our readers who don’t already know, the joint development of the Micro Four Thirds system by Olympus and Panasonic in 2009 allowed for the creation of a whole new category of mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that have since flooded the enthusiast photography market.
Pros: Faster burst shooting mode, Improved AF speed, Tilting LCD
Cons: Uncomfortable design, No built-in flash, Unused LCD real estate
Summary: With the core of the Olympus Pen models the same, the E-PL3's makeover successfully creates a marked physical difference between it and the larger E-P3.
Those desiring a compact and modern-styled body will be happy.
Excerpt: There's some fierce competition for the accolade of best compact system camera (CSC). The basic concept is a strong one, combining SLR quality with compact proportions and topping it off with the best videos modes around. However, no camera we've seen to date gets everything right.
A Micro Four Thirds camera that can supply clear and vibrant results, but it isn't great for motion pictures
Good Gear Guide.au
24 November 2011
Summary: The PEN Lite E-PL3 isn't a camera that will blow you away, but it does have a lot of good points: what you see on its LCD screen is what the camera will capture, it performs well in low-light environments and its image quality is very good.
Pros: Vibrant image quality, Good handling of auto exposure, Decent low-light performance
Cons: Physical controls not great, Focusing sometimes inaccurate, Wobbly video results
Summary: While the E-PL2 was essentially a tarted-up E-PL1, with the E-P3 its manufacturer has gone the whole hog in terms of a makeover. However, in Olympus' bid to deliver a Digital Pen that is 'compact and cute', the E-PL3 is a bit of a curio, dropping arguably essential features like a proper handgrip...