Olympus PEN E-P3 in-depth review
On this page we're showing the E-P3 alongside a range of other similar cameras, to give an idea of relative sizes along with a brief overview of their major differences.
Compared to the Olympus PEN E-PL3
Here's the E-P3 alongside its co-announced sister model, the PEN Lite (E-PL3). The latest in the PL line is considerably smaller than before, losing the built-in flash but gaining a tilt screen.
Compared to Olympus PEN E-P2
The family resemblance between the E-P2 and E-P3 is very clear here; from the front, the newcomer clearly shares a lot with its predecessor. The most visible changes are the cleaner lines of the top plate (due to better integration of the accessory port into the overall design) and the slight gain in width due to the bolt-on grip.
Compared to Samsung NX100
Samsung's NX100 is another direct competitor to the E-P3. It houses a larger APS-C sensor within its a rather boxy body, but doesn't have a built-in flash. The NX100's kit lens collapses to an even slimmer package than the E-P3's. But this comes at the cost of any form of image stabilization.
Compared to Sony NEX-5
Sony's NEX-5 squeezes an APS-C sensor into its tiny body, although there's no space for in-body image stabilization or a flash, which has to be bolted on top. Its Achilles' heel is arguably the size of its kit zoom, which makes the overall package no more portable despite the smaller camera body.
Compared to Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3
Panasonic's current 'enthusiast' Micro Four Thirds model is the G3, with its 16 MP sensor and built-in EVF. Despite its faux-SLR styling it's surprisingly compact - it's narrower from the front, and the integrated EVF is neater then the E-P3's removable unit (although less flexible). However the SLR-style design impacts on portability, with the EVF eyepiece protruding from the back of the camera (which obviously can't be removed) and a bulkier, non-collapsing image-stabilized kit lens.
Compared to Fujifilm FinePix X100
The other classically-styled large-sensor compact on the block is of course Fujifilm's FinePix X100, with its fixed 23mm F2 (the E-P3 is wearing the Panasonic 20mm F1.7 to match). This has the advantage of making it surprisingly slim.
Compared to Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1
The GF1 may be an older model, but it's still highly regarded as a thoroughbred 'enthusiast' camera. Given the direction Panasonic has taken recently with the GF line, steadily shrinking the size while stripping away features and external controls, we suspect a fair few GF1 owners hankering after a new toy may well cast more than a casual glance in the direction of the E-P3. The two cameras are pretty similar in size; the Olympus is a bit wider, but the Panasonic is fractionally taller. The E-P3 offers an array of additional enthusiast-friendly features, including in-body image stabilization, electronic level displays, and a much better EVF.
- 1 Introduction
- 2 Introduction
- 3 Specifications
- 4 Side-by-sides
- 5 Body and Design
- 6 Operation and Controls
- 7 Displays
- 8 Displays
- 9 Menus
- 10 Menus
- 11 Overall handling
- 12 Overall Operation & Performance
- 13 Noise & Noise Reduction
- 14 Resolution
- 15 Dynamic Range
- 16 Raw & Software
- 17 Photographic tests
- 18 Features
- 19 Art Filters
- 20 Movie Mode
- 21 Comparedto...(JPEG)
- 22 Comparedto...(High ISO JPEG)
- 23 Comparedto...(Raw)
- 24 Conclusion
- 25 Samples