Olympus Announces Three New Pen Cameras and Two New Lenses

Andrewteee

All-Pro
Jul 8, 2010
123
I'm almost at that point too. Thinking of selling all my Pentax gear in order to buy in to a decent MFT system. This last crop from Olympus have me convinced that PEN is the way to go.
I'm not sure that I'm ready to start selling my DSLR gear, but I may start by selling unused lenses. After my experience with compact cameras the Olympus 50-200mm lens feels like a beast. Great lens, but I just don't use it much anymore and it's not pleasant to lug around.
 
Jan 31, 2011
164
Newcastle, Australia
Sue
I'm not sure that I'm ready to start selling my DSLR gear, but I may start by selling unused lenses. After my experience with compact cameras the Olympus 50-200mm lens feels like a beast. Great lens, but I just don't use it much anymore and it's not pleasant to lug around.
Ahh. None of my lenses are that big. My biggest issue is with arthritic wrists, and the weight of the K-5 even with primes and the lightweight zooms is starting to wear me out a bit. Probably why I gravitated to this forum, because I've been considering a change for a while, and even now tend to take a compact with me, rather than the dSLR. Of course, I could just sell the body + WR zooms and get another K-r with which I have no weight issues at all.

The E-P3 is a great temptation though :)
 

123compact!

Regular
May 19, 2011
18
That "god like", as I've heard it described, AF is really (REALLY) enticing but I don't think I can go back to m4/3s sensor size and ISO performance. Oly did a phenomenal job with this refresh though. There are going to be some very happy shooters out there.

NEX batter up! Can't wait to see what Sony does with the 7 now.

EDIT - So I don't sound like a sensor snob, the m4/3 platform is clearly where it is at for AF lenses in a compact package. Ricoh is ok in the quality dept. but we need more lenses, Sony has a long, long way to go and with Fuji, well Fuji gives us one lens.
 

rparmar

Regular
Jul 12, 2011
18
Limerick, Ireland
I wonder what the marketing strategy was for giving the EPL3 the tilt screen, but not to the "flagship" m4/3. Similarly, the EPL3 has faster continuos shooting than EP3.
Makes no sense to me. Olympus very badly needs a flagship product but instead they flood the market with as many variations on the same camera as possible. Where is the body with built-in EVF, tilt screen and two proper control wheels?

Thinking of selling all my Pentax gear in order to buy in to a decent MFT system. This last crop from Olympus have me convinced that PEN is the way to go.
You still can't assign ISO to a control wheel. The manual focus magnification interferes with other controls. The responsiveness and shot speed is far less than Pentax. No built in EVF. Worse noise performance. And so on. My blog has several articles going into these particulars.

Olympus could easily fix most of their shortcomings and become a viable alternative to Pentax. But they don't seem to want to.
 
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Djarum

All-Pro
Jul 10, 2010
123
Huntsville, AL
Jason
I don't think Olympus needs a GX type model that panasonic already has. Its more cost effective to use similar components across three cameras than to make several different cameras all together. I know lots of "forum" readers want an EVF, but the market they are trying to sell to doesn't really care. If the more enthusiast market decideds to buy a PEN here or there, thats an added bonus.
 
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jonoslack

Veteran
May 6, 2011
68
I don't think Olympus needs a GX type model that panasonic already has. Its more cost effective to use similar components across three cameras than to make several different cameras all together. I know lots of "forum" readers want an EVF, but the market they are trying to sell to doesn't really care. If the more enthusiast market decideds to buy a PEN here or there, thats an added bonus.
Well, as far as I'm concerned a plug in EVF is fine . . . as long as it's a good plug in EVF, and that the camera is smaller as a result of not having it built in. It has the added benefit that over a couple of bodies (and an ZX-1) you can have one EVF and a bunch of saved space. Worth mentioning that I'd come to the same conclusion about the built in EVF, and had actually abandoned Olympus as a result of it last summer . . . more recently I bought a ZX1, and tried the VF2 - found it to be good . . . so I got a deal on an EPL2, and found that to be good as well. As far as the tilting LCD, I have two feelings:
1. it's vital
2. when I've had it on a camera I've almost never used it (I just find the orientation awkward). Give me a grand OLED LCD with a really good angle of view anyday.

HMMM - begins to start sounding like an EP3 doesn't it!
 
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Ray Sachs

Legend
Sep 21, 2010
123
Not too far from Philly
you should be able to figure it out...
The whole permanent vs portable EVF thing is completely a matter of taste. I prefer the VF2 to the built-in finders on the GH2 and other Pany G series cameras (and the one on the GH2 is very very good). Because I just don't like using them most of the time and they take up a lot of space when you don't need 'em. I'd rather have one I can stick on for those rare times when its pretty critical. And when I have a camera that has one, I end up using it a lot and I really don't prefer shooting that way, but when its there, it sort of beckons. That said, I love the built in finder in the X100, but that's probably because I use it in OVF mode about 99% of the time and that's a whole different ballgame.

I think a flip up screen is vital too, but I only like the simpler flip UP screens like the EPL3 and Nex. I've had the fully articulating screen on the GH2 and I NEVER used it. Not true, once I did when I was shooting some kids in my wife's classroom and was going for some goofy angles (because they're goofy kids!). But most of the time I'm trying to be at least slightly discrete about my shooting and having this appendage sticking out to the left of the camera any time I want to look down into the screen just never worked for me at all. And I really don't need any of the other odd positions that screen allows. But a screen that I can just tip up and look straight down into with the camera around my waist and do so without being particularly noticed, that's just 'da bomb for me. The first time I shot with a Nex it was like coming home (I guess to fond memories of shooting with a twin lens reflex). I used it approximately ALL the time with that camera. And I'm ready to sell it for the EPL3 because its got the same thing, but faster AF and more and (for now) better lenses, which all makes up for losing a bit of low light capability. So the GH2 is gone, the Nex is for sale, and I can't wait until the epl3 hits the shelves. Right now I don't have a single m43 camera but I have a bunch of lenses waiting for the next one.

-Ray
 

Djarum

All-Pro
Jul 10, 2010
123
Huntsville, AL
Jason
Ray,

Is this because the screen sticks out away from the camera when you need the screen angled?

Off topic,

I did see you had your NEX for sale. To be honest, I was rather suprised. I know you praised it quite a bit. Is this just another case of G.A.S.? The new Olys are tempting. I'm waiting for them to get into more folks hands before I decide to pull the trigger. The E-P1 has been faithful for over a year and a half.
 

Djarum

All-Pro
Jul 10, 2010
123
Huntsville, AL
Jason
Well, as far as I'm concerned a plug in EVF is fine . . . as long as it's a good plug in EVF, and that the camera is smaller as a result of not having it built in. It has the added benefit that over a couple of bodies (and an ZX-1) you can have one EVF and a bunch of saved space. Worth mentioning that I'd come to the same conclusion about the built in EVF, and had actually abandoned Olympus as a result of it last summer . . . more recently I bought a ZX1, and tried the VF2 - found it to be good . . . so I got a deal on an EPL2, and found that to be good as well. As far as the tilting LCD, I have two feelings:
1. it's vital
2. when I've had it on a camera I've almost never used it (I just find the orientation awkward). Give me a grand OLED LCD with a really good angle of view anyday.

HMMM - begins to start sounding like an EP3 doesn't it!
Exactly. I like choices, and I think Olympus has given us some new ones.
 

Ray Sachs

Legend
Sep 21, 2010
123
Not too far from Philly
you should be able to figure it out...
Ray,

Is this because the screen sticks out away from the camera when you need the screen angled?

Off topic,

I did see you had your NEX for sale. To be honest, I was rather suprised. I know you praised it quite a bit. Is this just another case of G.A.S.? The new Olys are tempting. I'm waiting for them to get into more folks hands before I decide to pull the trigger. The E-P1 has been faithful for over a year and a half.
Yeah DJ, I don't like to have to flip the screen out to the side of the camera before I can flip it up and look down into it. I like it sort of hidden between the camera and my body - that way I can also see and manipulate the controls while I'm looking at the screen.

I don't think its just GAS, but I'm the least objective person to ask about my own gas issues! :cool: But as much as I liked and continue to like the Nex, I said not long after I got it that Nex and m43 were in a bit of a race for my affections (but they probably thought it was all about money!). If Nex could develop some good lenses in a few of my favorite focal lengths before somebody (ANYbody) made an m43 camera with a flip up screen and fast AF, then I'd stick with Nex and might ditch the short end of my m43 gear, just keeping a body around for longer zoom and telephoto work. BUT, if m43 came out with a camera with GH2 AF speed and the Nex type of screen, I'd be back in the m43 camp in a New York minute. I didn't really expect it to happen nearly this fast, if at all. Since Nex was the ONLY camera I was aware of with that screen, I didn't see any reason to think that there'd be an m43 camera like that at all, let alone so quickly. But lo and behold, Oly basically built EXACTLY what I was hoping for and I have m43 pancake lenses in 14, 17, and 20 mm that covers almost everything I like to shoot, not to mention the 9-18 and I'll probably add the 45 f1.8. I got used to shooting with the Nex 16 (equivalent to an m43 12mm) and did some stuff I like with it, but I'm definitely more at home shooting most stuff with a 28 or 35mm focal length. And I have that covered with my m43 kit. I doubt I'll buy the new 12mm lens because I wouldn't use that as a walk around lens much as long as I have the other lengths and I have it covered in the 9-18.

So this isn't really impulse - I'd been figuring I might do this anyway and the fact that Oly did this with the EPL3 before Sony got their act together with even the Zeiss 24mm lens makes it a VERY easy call. I'm just kind of shocked and delighted it happened so fast - I've barely had the Nex for six months. And I just sold a GH2 and Nokton for more than the EPL3 and the 45 will cost me, so selling the Nex isn't even critical - I just don't see the need to have two cameras with the same attributes.

-Ray
 

Djarum

All-Pro
Jul 10, 2010
123
Huntsville, AL
Jason
Ray,

The only two issues I see with the E-PL3 are the lack of grip and quality of the screen. Since your wanting to shoot mostly wide to normal, the lack of grip might not be an issue for your. I also have large hands, which play into my decisions as well. The quality of the screen also worries me a bit. Being a traditional LCD screen and being cropped down while taking photos( the screen is 16:9), I worry about how good it is. Thats why I want to wait. I also want to get my hands on the new 45mm, but thats a different story.
 

Ray Sachs

Legend
Sep 21, 2010
123
Not too far from Philly
you should be able to figure it out...
I'd be more concerned about the screen if I couldn't use the VF2 on days where it may be too bright. I've talked to one guy who got to preview an EPL3 though and he has a Nex as well and said the epl3 looked as bright to him in sunlight as the Nex does. Even if it doesn't, the ability to stick an evf on there if needed is enough insurance for me.

-Ray
 

Bill Gordon

Regular
Sep 20, 2010
28
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
I think these cameras from Olympus are a significant step forward for Micro 4/3 and a real commitment for Olympus in this sector. I'm really interested in looking at the E-PM1 as it looks like a XZ-1 but with interchangeable lens system. Looking forward to seeing these in our shop.
Hi Andy
No offence intended but i don't share your view. If the EP3 included the tilt screen and a built in EVF (instead of the flash) then I would say that Olympus has hit pay dirt. The average person who would use flash would prefer a gun of their choice to attach on the flash shoe. It is my feeling that they are offering far too many choices of bodies instead of putting all their apples in the same basket.
 

rparmar

Regular
Jul 12, 2011
18
Limerick, Ireland
I agree completely, Bill. An add-on EVF takes up valuable space, costs too much, and uses up the slot I want to put my radio trigger into. A built-in flash is useless since it is weak and cannot tilt or rotate. Worse yet, it uses up valuable real-estate on the left-hand side of the camera, where I want to see a second control dial.
 

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