Conclusion: There's not really a whole lot to compare the Stylus 1 with. The Sony RX10 has an 8.3 optical zoom with a larger sensor and sharper image quality, but it's twice the price and not nearly as compact. Most advanced compacts have a 5x zoom or less, and the Olympus Stylus 1 doubles that feature. The new Nikon Coolpix P7800 is the next closest competitor with a 7.1x optical zoom.
Pros: 10.3x optical zoom is best in class, Super macro mode for versatility, Compact size considering the large lens, Excellent design for physical controls, Extra features like viewfinder and tilting LCD screen
Cons: Noise at higher ISOs, Resolution and sharpness not best in class, Video quality could improve
Conclusion: Olympus has created a niche camera in the Stylus 1, perhaps by design. It's too big to appeal to pocketable point-and-shoot shoppers, while its sensor is too small to really please the enthusiasts it seems aimed at. The difficult question of this camera's raison d'être is compounded by its price—$700 is a heck of a lot to ask for a camera with a 1/1.7" image sensor. If zoom isn't as important to you, there are a few noteworthy advanced compacts worth checking out.
Summary: Conclusion The Olympus Stylus 1 is a thoughtfully designed and robustly constructed imaging tool that is dependably responsive, non-threatening to subjects, and capable of reliably generating first-rate images. The Stylus 1 was obviously designed for photography enthusiasts, by photography enthusiasts. The stylish little Stylus 1 does everything very well - image quality, operational speed, and usability/functionality are all above average. Still not convinced?
Pros: fast f2.8 fixed maximum aperture, excellent image quality, fun to use.
Cons: The screw-in lens cover, slight menu complexity, minor video start/stop lag
Summary: The STYLUS 1 is also very compact, and when testing it alongside rivals like Panasonic's Lumix FZ200 and Sony's RX10, I kept being surprised how much smaller it was. Unlike those two models, you really can squeeze the STYLUS 1 into a smaller coat pocket, and comparatively speaking it virtually disappears inside a bag.
Pros: Very compact body with great controls., Built-in 28-300mm f2.8 equivalent zoom., Lower noise than models with 1/2.3in sensors., Large and detailed electronic viewfinder., Tilting touchscreen display., Built-in Wifi with great smartphone control.
Cons: Optics are a little soft at edges at wider focal lengths., Basic movie capabilities., No in-camera HDR or panorama modes., No focus peaking., No interval timer., Lens out-gunned by Lumix FZ200., Quality, build & movies better on Sony RX10.
Excerpt: During the fall of 2013, Olympus announced their new STYLUS 1; an "enthusiast" compact camera designed for semi-pros who need an all-in-one with manual controls and a quality lens. The STYLUS 1 boasts a newly developed, ultra-slim 10.7x i.ZUIKO zoom lens with a constant f2.8 aperture, built-in VCM image stabilization, Macro Shot capabilities as close as 2-inches, and a 28-300mm 35mm equivalency.
Conclusion: As we said, we love little cameras like the Stylus 1. No, they aren’t as convenient as a smartphone, but if you want good image quality in a compact – and are willing to carry two devices – the Stylus 1 is the type of camera you want if you aren’t shopping for a DSLR or mirrorless camera. It gives you enough user control for the times that call for it, but its automatic mode can handle all the other times.
Summary: Up to a point, more choice is generally a good thing, so it's nice to have another camera to choose from at the top of the advanced compact market. The Olympus Stylus 1 is a very accomplished camera from a veteran manufacturer, and can compete on equal terms with the other cameras you'll see on the same shelf.
Conclusion: I wouldn't consider myself a fan of superzooms. In general, the extra zoom range they offer has never been worth the image quality compromise of using a small sensor for the kind of shooting I like to do. The additional bulk of long zoom lenses is also pretty off-putting - again, once I've made the decision to carry something that isn't pocketable, I want a step up in image quality to make up for that inconvenience.