DPreview just posted its comprehensive review of the Olympus Pen E-PL1, which is one of the hotter Micro Four Thirds cameras out there. I have a particular interest in Micro 4/3 as I’m considering a smaller alternative to my Canon DSLR.
I do love my t1i, but I must admit that sometimes I’d like something smaller.
Okay, enough ranting, let’s look at some of DPreview’s conclusions:
There are, perhaps, three types of potential users who might find themselves considering purchasing the E-PL1, all of who will find things to love and things to be frustrated by in the camera. The first is the compact camera user who wants better images, might be interested in taking some control over the camera but doesn’t want to learn about apertures and exposure. The second is the owner of an enthusiast compact, more familiar with changing settings but not wanting the bulk of a DSLR. The third is a current DSLR owners looking for a smaller second camera.
The most important aspect of any camera is its image quality and it is, without question, the E-PL1’s strongest point. By just about any measure, the E-PL1’s image quality is very good indeed and, thanks to one the most capable JPEG engines we’ve come across, is easily accessible to everybody. The camera’s metering is dependable, meaning that in most circumstances you get bright, punchy images that make the most of the camera’s capability.
So if you’re looking for a compact camera with DSLR-level image quality, the Olympus E-PL1 looks like a pretty sweet bet. It’s not that much more expensive than the inferior Canon G11, has in-body image stabilization (so even hyper-fast prime lenses are image stabilized, and that phenomenal Olympus color character.