Summary: The Olympus E-P1 is one of the rare digital cameras to support interchangeable lenses and not be a DSLR. The goal of this design is to give the flexibility of changing lenses with the portability of a compact camera and still produce high-quality photographs.
Pros: Very good image quality, just below average for a DSLR, One of the smallest interchangeable lens digital cameras, Nicely saturated colors, Quite good metering, Good dynamic range, Above average automatic white-balance, Good built-in stabilization, 2-Axis Digital Level, Dual control dials, Excelle...
Cons: Reduced dynamic range compared to a DSLR, causes highlight clipping, Over-sensitive lower-rear control dial, Slow autofocus system, Not exposure priority, Long continuous drive display lag, No exposure display while showing digital level, Awkward menu system, Poor LCD visibility, No built-in flas...
Summary: Buying the E-P1 may look hard to justify at £700 (and a significant further price increase needs to be added when the optional viewfinder and flash are factored in) given it is not a DSLR but priced like one.
Pros: Image quality, handling, Super Control Panel, Comprehensive, creative feature set, Good dust reduction system, Retro styling, Build, Lenses.
Cons: No (built-in) viewfinder, No built-in flash, Price, screen hard to see in brighter conditions.
Excerpt: Olympus brings back sepia-tinged memories of film with its retro rangefinder looking digital Pen. Clad in a brushed and polished metal casing, there’s little doubt the new Pen can take a beating.
Pros: Solidly built, nostalgically styled 12.3-megapixel cam that rewards a considered approach to picture-taking. Tidy images up to ISO 1600. Manual controls. Mated with the low-profile 17-mm f2.8 lens (0), this is a street shooter’s dream. Excellent image stabilization. Magnified preview feature zoom...
Cons: Lo-res LCD a real disappointment. Complicated menus. External flash only (0). Subpar low-light, ultrahigh-ISO shots.
Summary: Squeezing a big sensor into a small camera may sound like an easy thing to do, but involves over-coming a number of technical hurdles. Sigma was the first to achieve the physical goal with its DP1 compact, although this suffered from a number of operational caveats which ruled it out for many...
Pros: Compact body with DSLR-sized sensor., Built-in stabilisation works with any lens., HD movie mode and HDMI port., Broad customisation and Level Gauge.
Cons: Leisurely autofocus system., No built-in flash or viewfinder., Average resolution screen., Collapsing kit zoom mechanism can annoy.
Conclusion: Olympus E-P1 Micro Four Thirds system camera The Olympus E-P1 has made a daring move. The E-P1 is in many ways a very special camera. First of all, its appearance; retro and modern at the same time. For me, its design is as successful as the retro-design of the Volkswagen Beetle or the Fiat 500.
Summary: It's hard not to fall for the E-P1's charms. The unashamedly nostalgic design combines with true SLR quality in a remarkably pocketable package. The lack of flash and viewfinder will put some off, as will the relatively slow focus, but overall this bodes very well indeed for the new system.
Pros: Excellent resolution, tons of detail in the shots, Appealing, bright and punchy out of camera results and well optimized JPEGs, Very clever collapsible kit lens that's small, but offers decent quality, Unique retro design puts SLR quality into a compact body, Good high ISO performance up to ISO 3...
Cons: Slow focus requires a more considered approach to shooting, Some highlight clipping (and poor dynamic range at ISO 100), Low resolution screen that's hard to see in bright light, No viewfinder, No built-in flash (and the optional flash is expensive and pretty basic), Complicated menu system not t...
Summary: For many shoppers, DSLRs' bulky shapes are a deal-breaker, and that's why we like the Olympus PEN E-P1. If you want the image quality of a DSLR along with a more compact design (and can afford to pay a premium), this camera is a compelling choice.
Excerpt: Olympus doesn’t currently make a digital SLR – in the conventional sense – with HD video capability. What it does offer, like Panasonic with its GH1, is a device that’s technically classified as an ‘interchangeable lens camera’.
Pros: Rock-solid build; image quality on a par with SLR cameras; handy size means it can be used like a glorified snapshot model.
Cons: No optical viewfinder or flash provided; plus the same outlay would buy an entry-level entry SLR and a couple of lenses – albeit one without HD video.