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Olympus PEN E-P1 Specs and Scores

Storage & Battery
Olympus PEN E-P1
Refers to the year this camera was officially made available for sale.
Announcement Date
Refers to the date the manufacturer publicly announced the upcoming release and general specs of this camera.
June 16, 2009
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Olympus PEN E-P1 scores a 40/100 in our evaluation. This mirrorless camera, announced on June 16, 2009, and released the same year, initially retailed for $1,098. Measuring 121 x 70 x 36mm and weighing 355g (0.78lbs), the E-P1 has a compact design. However, considering the advancements in camera technology since 2009, the E-P1 may struggle to compete with newer models in today’s market.

Olympus PEN E-P1 Overview and Optics

The Olympus PEN E-P1 receives a score of 45/100 for its optics. This camera features a 12.3-megapixel NMOS sensor, a TruePic V processor, and a Micro Four Thirds sensor size. It also has a shooting speed of 3 frames per second, a DXOMARK score of 55 for the sensor, and a Micro 4/3 lens mount. The E-P1 also includes image stabilization and a 4:3 aspect ratio.

Comparing these specifications to the current market, the E-P1 falls short in some areas. The 12.3-megapixel sensor is considered low, as modern cameras offer higher resolution. Additionally, a shooting speed of 3 frames per second is slow compared to the fast-paced photography needs of today’s users.

Despite these shortcomings, the Olympus PEN E-P1 still offers valuable features such as image stabilization and a Micro 4/3 lens mount, which allows for a wide range of lens options. However, it is essential to weigh these benefits against the limitations of its optics when considering the E-P1 as a viable option in today’s competitive camera market.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
12.3 MP
Image Resolution
Image resolution is measured in pixels and megapixels, width by height. The higher the number, the higher its resolution.
4032 x 3024 px
Sensor Type
The camera sensor captures light and records the image. Sensors vary in physical size, the number of pixels, and quality.
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
13 x 17.3 mm
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Micro Four Thirds
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
3 fps
Lens Mount
The lens mount will tell you what type of lens range you can fit onto the camera body. Often the same camera company will have different lens ranges for different cameras.
Micro 4/3
Image Processor
The image processor in the camera converts the information collected on the sensor for digital storage on the memory card.
TruePic V
Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio refers to the proportional difference between width and height. The most popular aspect ratios are 3:2 and 4:3.
Minimum ISO (Native)
Refers to the lowest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Lower ISO are less sensitive to light but make a cleaner image.
Maximum ISO (Native)
Refers to the highest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Higher ISO is necessary for low-light situations or night photography, but higher ISOs often introduce grain or noise.
Minimum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Maximum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Minimum Shutter Speed
The minimum shutter speed will tell you the longest exposure your camera can take without using an external accessory.
60 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
The maximum shutter speed tells you the length inside 1 second the camera will capture. These can sometimes be extended with accessories such as extra external batteries.
1/ 4000 s
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
In-body Stabilization
In-body Stabilization means the camera has a certain technology embedded that counteracts camera shake.
Viewfinder Type
The viewfinder type is either electronic or optical. Electronic viewfinders will have a small screen in the viewfinder. Optical viewfinders will use prisms and mirrors to look through the lens.

Olympus PEN E-P1 Video Performance

The Olympus PEN E-P1 lacks video capabilities. This camera focuses solely on photography, providing no option to record video.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Time-Lapse Built In
A built in time-lapse mode will allow continuous shooting throughout a prolonged period of time to be compressed into a sped up video.

Olympus PEN E-P1 Features and Benefits

The Olympus PEN E-P1 receives a feature score of 36 out of 100. This camera has a 3-inch screen with a resolution of 230,000 dots. However, it lacks some modern features, such as a touchscreen, flip screen, GPS, WiFi, and Bluetooth capabilities.

Comparing with today’s market, the E-P1 falls short in providing the convenience and connectivity that many photographers look for in a camera. The absence of a touchscreen and flip screen limits flexibility in shooting angles and user interaction. Furthermore, the lack of GPS, WiFi, and Bluetooth hinders seamless photo sharing and location tagging, which are now common features in contemporary cameras.

Despite its low feature score, the Olympus PEN E-P1 still offers decent image quality and performance. However, potential buyers should consider the camera’s limitations and weigh them against their specific photography needs and desired features.

Built-in Flash
A built-in flash will often be positioned right above the lens. This will automatically pop up when you activate it.
External Flash
External flashes are often connected through a hot shoe at the top of a camera, or a cable at the side of the camera.
GPS features in a camera will include location metadata to each of your photographs.
Weather Sealing
Weather sealing capabilities will give you more confidence when shooting in unfavourable conditions.
Screen Type
Touch Screen
Touchscreen allows you to change camera settings and access menus with a swipe of your finger, instead of using buttons.
Screen Size
Screen Resolution
Screen dots indicate the resolution of the LCD screen by including each sub pixel.
230,000 dots
Flip Screen
A flip screen (or articulating screen) is a second screen which can flip out from the side or top of the camera. This rotating screen allows you more freedom to take photos at different angles.
Live View
Live View feature allows you to see a continuous live video of what is being seen through your lens.
Bluetooth capabilities allow you wireless control of your camera with other external devices.

Olympus PEN E-P1 Storage and Battery

The Olympus PEN E-P1’s storage and battery performance receives a score of 16/100. This camera has one memory card slot, accepting SD and SDHC cards for storage. Compared to modern cameras, the single memory card slot may limit storage capacity, as many now offer dual slots.

Regarding battery life, the E-P1 offers 300 shots per charge using the BLS-1 battery type. This falls short in today’s market, as many cameras provide longer battery life. Additionally, the E-P1 lacks USB charging, a convenient feature present in newer models.

The Olympus PEN E-P1 falls behind in storage and battery capabilities when compared to current camera models, offering limited memory card slots, shorter battery life, and no USB charging option.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
Dual Memory Card Slots
Battery Type
Battery Life
Approximately how long this cameras battery will last measured by how many photographs you will be able to take.
300 shots
USB Charging
Sensor scores tested by DXOMARK
Overall Score
DXOMARK overall sensor score.
Portrait (Color Depth)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Portrait score in our camera sensor reviews defines color depth performance and its unit is a number of bits. A color depth of 22 bits is excellent; differences below 1 bit are barely noticeable.'
21.4 bits
Landscape (Dynamic Range)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Landscape score in our camera sensor tests defines the maximum dynamic range of the camera sensor and its unit is an exposure value (EV). A value of 12 EV is excellent with differences below 0.5 EV usually not noticeable.'
10.4 EVs
Sports (Low-Light ISO)
Described by DXOMARK as 'The maximal value of ISO sensitivity needed to reach a given value of Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). The greater the value, the better'
User Scores
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