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Olympus PEN E-PL1 Specs and Scores

Storage & Battery
Olympus PEN E-PL1
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.
February 03, 2010
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Olympus PEN E-PL1 receives a score of 39/100 for its general specifications. Announced on February 3rd, 2010, and released the same year, this mirrorless camera entered the market with a launch price of $599. The E-PL1 measures 115 x 72 x 42mm and weighs 334g or 0.74lbs.

Comparing these specs to today’s market, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 shows its age. While it offered decent features in 2010, it struggles to compete with the advancements and innovations in current camera models. Nevertheless, it remains a part of Olympus’ reputable camera lineup.

Olympus PEN E-PL1 Overview and Optics

The Olympus PEN E-PL1 optics receive a score of 43 out of 100. This camera is equipped with a 12.3-megapixel sensor and a TruePic V processor. The sensor size is Micro Four Thirds, which is smaller than the APS-C sensors found in many current mirrorless cameras. Despite its smaller size, the sensor has a DXOMARK score of 54, which is decent for its class.

This camera has a Micro 4/3 lens mount, offering compatibility with a wide range of lenses. The E-PL1 also includes image stabilization, a useful feature for reducing camera shake and improving image quality. Its shooting speed is 3 frames per second, which is slower than many modern cameras but still sufficient for casual photography. The aspect ratio is the standard 4:3.

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/ 2000 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-PL1 Video Performance

The Olympus PEN E-PL1 receives a video score of 34 out of 100. This camera offers standard high-definition video with a maximum resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. The video frame rate reaches a maximum of 30 frames per second. However, this camera lacks built-in time-lapse functionality.

Comparing these video specifications to modern cameras, the E-PL1 falls behind in terms of resolution and features. Many current cameras provide higher resolutions, such as 4K, and additional functionalities. The absence of time-lapse capabilities further contributes to the E-PL1’s lower video performance.

Taking these factors into account, the Olympus PEN E-PL1’s video capabilities are not competitive in today’s market. While it may suffice for casual users, those seeking advanced video features should consider other options.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Max Video Resolution
The best resolution this camera can capture video in. Modern cameras can capture up to 8K video.
Standard HD
Max Video Dimensions
Video resolution measured by the greatest number of pixels possible in each frame, width by height. A higher resolution means more detail or clarity in your video.
1280 x 720 px
Max Video Frame Rate
How many frames per second your video will capture. Most cameras have options for multiple frame rates, depending on the resolution you shoot in. For a general video, 24p or 30p is the standard, but more serious filmmakers may need a higher frame rate for creative effect.
30 p
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.
Video File Format
Different cameras can record in various video file formats. The File format you record in can impact how you edit and use the files.

Olympus PEN E-PL1 Features and Benefits

The Olympus PEN E-PL1 receives a feature score of 34/100. This score reflects the camera’s available specifications, which include a 2.7-inch screen with a resolution of 230,000 dots. The camera lacks a touchscreen, flip screen, GPS, WIFI, and Bluetooth capabilities.

Compared to today’s market, the E-PL1 falls short in terms of modern features. The absence of a touchscreen, flip screen, and connectivity options like WIFI and Bluetooth make the camera less versatile and user-friendly for contemporary photographers. The screen resolution is also low when considering the high-resolution displays available on current camera models.

The Olympus PEN E-PL1’s features do not meet the standards of current market offerings. The camera’s limited specifications hinder its usability and adaptability for modern photography needs.

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-PL1 Storage and Battery

The Olympus PEN E-PL1 receives a storage and battery score of 16/100. This camera has only one memory card slot, accepting SD and SDHC cards. In today’s market, this may not be sufficient for those who require extensive storage or the convenience of multiple cards.

Regarding battery life, the E-PL1 can capture up to 290 shots with its BLS-1 battery. This battery life may fall short for extended photography sessions and does not support USB charging. Consequently, the E-PL1’s storage and battery capabilities may not meet the demands of contemporary users seeking advanced features and performance.

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.
290 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.'
21.5 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.'
10.1 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
B&H photo video

Olympus PEN E-PL1 Alternatives

Do you want to know how the Olympus PEN E-PL1 compares to its competitors? Have a look at the most popular comparisons for this camera below:

You can also try these trending comparisons for inspiration:

Olympus PEN E-PL1 photographed on a colored background

Olympus PEN E-PL1 FAQ

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have Built-in Image Stabilization?

Yes, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 features built-in image stabilization, which helps to reduce camera shake and produce sharper images, especially in low-light conditions or when using longer focal lengths.

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Support 4K Video Recording?

No, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 does not support 4K video recording. The maximum video resolution it offers is Standard HD (1280×720 pixels) at 30 frames per second.

What Size Sensor Does The Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have?

The Olympus PEN E-PL1 is equipped with a Micro Four Thirds sensor, which is a popular choice for mirrorless cameras due to its compact size and good image quality.

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have a Dual Memory Card Slot?

No, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 has only a single memory card slot, which supports SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards for storage.

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have a Touch Screen?

No, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 does not feature a touch screen. The camera is controlled using physical buttons and dials on the body.

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth?

Unfortunately, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 does not have built-in Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connectivity for wireless image transfer or remote control.

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have GPS?

No, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 does not have built-in GPS functionality for geotagging photos or tracking locations.

Is the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Weather Sealed?

No, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 is not weather sealed, so it is not recommended to use it in extreme weather conditions or wet environments without proper protection.

Does the Olympus PEN E-PL1 Have a Built-in Flash?

Yes, the Olympus PEN E-PL1 comes with a built-in flash, which can be useful for fill-in flash or low-light situations when an external flash is not available.

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