The E-PL1, with its Live Guide and compact-camera-like button control system, is the first mirrorless camera to really try to bridge the gap between point-and-shoot compacts and the DSLRs (and DSLR-like mirrorless cameras), on which a point-and-shoot mode has been added onto a camera mainly designed to be used in a semi-automatic or manual mode.
As such, it's hard to find direct peers for the E-PL1. The most obvious competitor is Nikon's D3000, which offers a similarly results-orientated guide mode for first-time DSLR users. Just to show how it stacks up against the other mirrorless offerings (though one aimed at a slightly more experienced user, with all the buttons that can bring), we'll also have a look at the Panasonic GF1.
Just for our own curiosity we'll also compare it to the Olympus E-P2 - just to see what difference the lighter anti-aliasing filter Olympus says it's fitted makes.
|Olympus E-PL1||$560||720p||2.7" / 230k pixels||In-body||12.2 MP NMOS (2.0x crop)|
|Nikon D3000||$450||No||3.0" / 920k pixels||Lens option||10.0 MP CMOS (1.5x crop)|
|Panasonic GF1||$750||720p||3.0" / 420k pixels||Lens option||12.0 MP NMOS (2.0x crop)|
|Olympus E-P2||$900||720p||3.0" / 230k pixels||In-body||12.2 MP NMOS (2.0x crop)|
Olympus E-PL1 advantages
- In-body image stabilization
- Compact dimensions (compared to D3000)
- 720p HD video (not present on D3000)
- Easy-to-use Live Guide mode (not present on GF1)
- Built-in flash (compared to E-P2)
- Direct movie record button (unlike E-P2)
- Highly configurable (compared to GF1 and D3000)
- Inexpensive compared to GF and E-P2
Olympus E-PL1 disadvantages
- No control dials mean slower operation
- Fewer external controls (compared to E-P2 and GF1)
- Smaller screen than E-P2 or D3000, lower screen resolution than GF1
- Less solid construction (compared to E-P2 and GF1)
- Limited fastest shutter speed (1/2000th, rather than 1/4000th for others)
- Less effective IS (than E-P2)
- No orientation sensor unlike E-P2, D3000 (and GF1 with kit lens)
- No wired or wireless remote shutter release option
Olympus E-PL1 Compact System Camera - Black (14-42mm Black Lens Kit)
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Olympus Pen E-PL5 Compact System Camera - Silver (16.1 MP, M.ZUIKO Digital 14...
Olympus Pen E-PL3 Compact System Camera - Black (M.ZUIKO Digital 14 -42mm II...
Olympus Pen E-PL5 Compact System Camera - White (16.1 MP, M.ZUIKO Digital 14...
Olympus Pen E-PL3 Compact System Camera - Red (M.ZUIKO Digital 14 -42mm II R...
Olympus E-PL3 Compact System Camera
with M.ZUIKO Digital 14 -42mm II R Lens - Silver
Olympus Pen E-PM1 Compact System Camera - Silver (includes M.ZUIKO Digital 14...
Olympus E-PL1 Compact System Camera - Black (Body Only)
Olympus E-PL2 Compact System Camera - Silver (includes M.ZUIKO DIGITAL...