Review: Olympus PEN E-P3

 
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Review: Olympus PEN E-P3

Highlights

  • The Olympus PEN E-P3 retains the same retro look of its predecessors but is packed with lots of new features

Olympus has brought out the latest in its PEN series of cameras, the Olympus PEN E-P3. It retains thesame retro look of its predecessors but is packed with lots of new features that makes it oneof a kind. It is faster, with a shutter speedof 60 miliseconds, and also has new add-ons like the inbuilt flash which is like a pop up element in the camera. Will this camera be thesum of its good looks or can it deliver?

 

Design and Build:

Designwise, this camera willremind you of the old timers with film reels. It feels very solid and steady. The body is of brushedaluminium and on the right side of the device is a faux leather hand grip,which prevents your hand from slipping off the smooth surface. The grip isremovable.

 

The front of the camera has a Lens Release button. The top of the devicehas the in-built flash, a rotary dial with the different shooting modes, clickbutton and the on/off button. Just below the in-built flash is a button which, when pressed, makes the flash pop up.

 

The rear of the device houses the 3" OLEDCapacitive Touch Screen. On the top right of the screen, we see the Record button, then the zoom button, then the display button, and lastly the erase button.There is also another rotary dial with an OK button in the middle. On the topof the dial is the

 

Info button which, when pressed, provides date and time details of each image. Near the Info button there is a Zoom Scroller.

 

On the extreme right of the camera, there are the USB and HDMI portshidden with a flap of brushed aluminium. The memory card slot is at the basewith the battery.

 

Usability:

The Olympus PEN E-P3 is 12.3 Mega Pixel with the latest Live MOS sensor.The MOS sensor is an upgrade of the CMOS sensor which allows you to take picturesin very low light conditions, reduces noise and also uses less energy. Sincethe energy consumption is low, it makes the cameramuch faster.

 

The camera has a touch sensitive OLED screen with 614,000 pixel dots.You can swipe through images by touching the screen and also do other thingslike setting the focus by tapping on the particular area which needs to befocused, zooming in/out. The screen also has anti-fingerprint and anti-dustsystems. The sensitivity of the camera ranges from ISO 200 to ISO 12,800. Ataround ISO 6400, the images give you a very subtle and a soft look but when theISO goes up to its highest range 12,800, the image becomes red which can destroy the picture quality.

 

The Olympus PEN E-P3 has added the latest True VI processor whichenables you to check the focus at 120 frames per secondmaking this camera work faster than its predecessors. Another very uniquefeature is a built in autofocus illuminator light which is in the form of anorange LED makes it easier to focus when you want to click images in very lowlight conditions. Compared to the previous E-P1 and E-P2, the autofocus is alsoupgraded to a level that it focuses on almost the whole image rather than justhalf.

 

The camera comes with 2 lenses - a 14.42mm with an aperture of 3.5 and a 41.150mm with anaperture of 5.6. The first lens has a snap focus ring which actually acts likea manual focus ring. The lens also has distance markings on the barrel. Thislens is wide angle and is good for shooting landscapes. The second lens is better suited to portraits andclose-ups.

 

The Olympus PEN E-P3 allows you to use your creativity with 10 Art Filters which include Dramatic Tone, GentleSepia, Cross Process, Diorama, Pin Hole, Grainy Film, Light Tone, Pale &Light Colour, Soft Focus and Pop Art. It also includes 22 shooting modes - Portrait, e-Portrait, Landscape,Landscape+Portrtait, Sport, Night, Night+Portrtait, Children, High Key, LowKey, DIS Mode, Macro, Nature Macro, Candle, Sunset, Documents, Panorama,Fireworks, Beach & Snow, Fisheye, Wide-Angle, 3D.

 

Images and videos can be shot in full 1080 p High Definition resolutionand also 3D. The 3D image is not as good as expected and it is also a little complicated to achieve a perfect result. Manual and Automaticmodes both work very well. It has in-built shadow adjustment controls and also in-body image stabilisation for both lenses. Automatic White Balancegives a very warm effect to pictures captured indoors. 

 

Verdict:

 The Olympus PEN E-P3 is a great looking camera with multiple featureswhich make this camera the best among the PEN series. This camera will come handy for photographers on the. But with such anexpensive price tag, it will have to fight forsurvival among DSLRs in similar price ranges.

 

Price:

Single Kit (14-42mm lens) - Rs.39,999

Double Kit (14-42mm+41-150mm lens) - Rs.46,999

 

Pros:

Strong Built

Attractive Looks

Various Shooting Options

Comes with Interchangeable Lenses

 

Cons:

Very Expensive

Very heavy not good to carry around

No Viewfinder

 

In The Box:

USB Cables

Lenses

AV Cables

Charger with cable

Strap

Warranty Card

Software CD

User Guide

 

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