Summary: One of the best compliments I can give the Olympus PEN Mini camera is this: The Mini's look, feel, and performance level make me expect to see a much higher price tag on this model. The PEN Mini, also called the E-PM1, shoots high-quality photos, and it has a fast response level.
Conclusion: The Olympus E-PM1 may be the smallest member of the Micro Four Thirds PEN family, but it delivers the same solid build quality and good-looking images as its larger siblings—and it’s lightning fast.
Pros: Fast autofocus system. Extremely compact. Accessory port for optional EVF. In-camera art filters.
Cons: High noise at ISO 1600 and above. No built-in flash. Fixed rear LCD.
Pros: Fast autofocus system and 5fps burst shooting mode are enough to keep up with some of the world’s best tennis players. Crisp 1080i HD movies with stereo sound available at the touch of a button. 2x magnification factor from Micro Four Thirds sensor turns a 300mm lens into a frackin’ 600mm lens. S...
Cons: Attach a zoom lens and the Mini becomes decidedly less mini. Very slow start-up time might cause you to miss shots of famous celebrities. Images above ISO 1600 are noisy. Menu navigation involves too many button pushes and knob turns. No built-in flash.
Excerpt: Father Olympus has sired a couple of siblings for the popular (and newly updated) Olympus Pen by introducing the Lite and Mini. Both tout a 12.3 megapixel sensor, interchangeable lens capabilities, 200-12,800 ISO and 1080i HD video along with a hand full of electronic filters making them perfect...
Summary: The Olympus E-PM1 is the baby of the 2011 PEN triplets. Nick-named the PEN Mini, the E-PM1 doesn't replace an existing model, but is a new entry in the range designed to appeal to those who want to step up from a point-and-shoot.
Pros: Built-in stabilisation works with any lens., 1080i60 movie mode with PASM., Standard hotshoe with an accessory port., Fast start-up and quick AF response.
Cons: Lacks a touch or tilting screen., Movie stabilisation artifacts., Incorrect control labels when customised., Single-use accessory port.
Summary: This new sensor delivers high-quality images and performance. Image noise is low and metering rarely overexposes. There are some issues with color- and white-balance accuracy though.
Pros: Low image noise, Conservative metering, Fast contrast-detect AF, Short shutter-lag, Almost instant video recording, Generally quick and responsive, Effective built-in stabilization, Excellent automatic, High level of customization, Excellent build quality
Cons: Poor color accuracy, Below average AWB, Useless ISO 12800, Low contrast LCD, Poor video framing preview accuracy, Histogram disappears during EC, Not always, Uncomfortable strap eyelets, Low battery life
Conclusion: Starting with the cons, the same petty gripe as the E-PL3 was expected… there’s still no HDMI cable to easily plug and play FullHD and 3D capabilities directly to a HD screen. And second the non-easy option to access the ISO function...
Summary: The Olympus PEN E-PM1 offers good image quality and manual control in a small, compact body. The E-PM1 offers nearly the same level of customization as its siblings, which should appeal to enthusiast shooters, but for compact upgraders it is easy to use in its out-of-the-box configuration.
Pros: Good low ISO image quality and resolution, Fast and responsive operation, Fast, accurate autofocus, Full HD AVCHD video, AF assist lamp, Comprehensive in-camera raw editing capability, High degree of camera and menu customization, Art filters offer fun, creative effects
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, Lack of a hand grip can make handling awkward with heavy lenses, 16x9 format LCD is less than...
Conclusion: Olympus has done a fine job moving the bar in the mirrorless interchangeable lens camera category. We liked the first one we tested (E-PL1) shooting down in New Orleans and the E-PM1 performed well in very different locales–for the most part.