Olympus PEN E-P1 - will you buy it or not?

Discussion in 'Olympus' started by john_graham|5, Jul 8, 2009.

  1. Just for interest same I would like to see how many people will consider to buy the Oly PEN or have already baught it and who will definitely not do it.
    Therefore please just wite "yes" or "no".
    You do not have to provide any reasons for your answer but of course you can if you want to.
    Thanks, I'm looking forward to the results!
  2. No: happy with Sony A700; small size (of EP1) comes with too many compromises including high cost.
  3. Nope, not this one. I applaud Olympus for taking the chance and I hope they make a bundle. I also hope other manufacturers are listening to the buzz in the serious-amateur world and will follow suit with their own versions. I think subsequent models will be even more desirable if Olympus listens to feedback from customers and implements their suggestions. A built in optical viewfinder would be nice even at the expense of perhaps a wider body. By trying to keep close to the Pen-F dimensions I think they limited themselves for nostalgic reasons. I have still not read a comprehensive review so its too early to tell what the strengths and weaknesses are. High ISO performance is obviously going to make or break the camera, since this is the area non-slrs have traditionaly struggled with. The comparison to the Leica M is going to be inevitable and I think most of us are hoping that the EP series will be the new 'Everyman's Leica". If they can emulate that swiss-watch feel and give us noise friendly images up to ISO 3200, they will have the makings of a legend. But for now, I'll wait for the next model and let others enjoy the prestige of first ownership.
  4. Some of the video clips I have seen from this camera were horrible. Whites were really blown out. To be fair it could have been operator error. My Lumix LX3 need -2/3 EV when shooting video to tame highlights.
    Like Milo I applaud their step and await reviews, but I'm leery of a Rev. A product. I would have wished for a 17/2 lens with a 4/3 sensor.
  5. thinking about it; if the high-ISO performance is as good as early reviews suggest i may have to jump on it. waiting for the price to drop a bit, though...
  6. No. I find the Panasonic GH1 to be a much better photography tool although it is slightly bigger and not nearly as good-looking as the EP1. If EP1 were to include an EVF and a vari-angle screen, it may lose the compactness that makes it so charming. However, I will be watching because I am sick and tired of the increase in weight and bulk with the introduction of every new D-SLR from Nikon (and most other manufacturers).
  7. jtk


    I think the DSLR / SLR design metaphor is tired. Anyone who's shot a good rangefinder, Leica, Voigtlander, or Canon, knows the photographic advantage of a bright frame viewfinder compared to reflex system. Same with APS vs most 4/3 and FF vs APS...the bigger field of view is a big advantage. And an optical finder is inherently brighter than prism, just as prism is inherently brighter than mirror box, and they're both closer to "reality" than any EVF...some photographers want to be in best possible visual contact with their subjects.
    EP-1 isn't designed for bug/flower photos, it's obviously designed substantially for people-pics.
  8. I'm interested. I'm going to wait for some more reviews, first. I'd love to get my hands on some RAW files at high ISOs.
  9. No, not yet. Eventually yes.
    The camera itself is beautifully made from metal and the 17mm lens seems just as solid. But the viewfinder is not nearly up to the same standard. It is a big piece of plastic, even wobbles a bit left to right due to thin plastic leg and has quite bad distortion as well. I would much rather buy the Sigma DP2 finder, or any similar solidly built around 35mm finder. But Olympus insists on selling the camera as a package. If I could just buy the body and 17 lens, with discount for the missing finder, I would do so. It does not make sense to buy them separately as it would cost more than the whole three piece set, and I do not want to buy that finder. As it is, I will probably wait for a few months and then buy it secondhand. Or wait for the next version that might come with a built in finder for the 17 lens.
  10. No .
    (FWIW, here is what I think is fair comparison of E-P and other cameras:
  11. Yes (already ordered).
    May replace the Olympus viewfinder with a Voigtlander 28/35 viewfinder I bought to attach to my D-Lux 3, which I've since sold (I never did attach the viewfinder). Looking for a digital camera that is the size of my Leica MP, with a decent sensor and IQ, and a smaller price tag.
    Michael J Hoffman
  12. No, although it looks very interesting! I did consider it seriously tho because i've decided i need a P&S to carry around just in case, but the EP1 is not really that, is it. Having only just bought a E-520, i feel a EP1 would be a waste of money (esp considering the cost). Don't get me wrong, I am happy to pay for quality, but the EP1 is too close to what i have now in the E-520. I am looking at a MJU 1040, something in that range.
  13. Ask me again after I've actually tried it. Otherwise, my qualified answer would be "Yes" if I was financially in a position to do so (which I'm not at the moment).
    The specs, credible previews and hi-rez samples from folks with hands-on experience show it would fill one very specific need I have for a miniature format camera. I'm looking for a replacement for my faithful "old" C-3040Z, something comparable to my Oly 35 RC, and the E-P1 is the best candidate I've seen in years.
  14. Probably. Score me YES column. It also will fill a perceived need in my work. I think. Will wait until Fall. Am not inclined to pre order, Want to hold and look and fiddle a little. I made a mistake in ordering the E 30 from reviews (camera Wrotniak raved about too), and confess that I decided to send it back to NYC within a week, just didn't grab me the way I thought it would . Nice enough camera though . Highly personal buys entailing some money for those that are finicky. You know the language. Man-machine interface. and all that horsehockey :) gs
  15. When Lightroom supports the E-P1 .ORF files, yes.
  16. Qualified no. That said I must be in the position that many others are. There seems to be little chance, save for a long car trip, that I would ever be able to actually see and hold one. The days of a selection of cameras being available to see and touch before a buying decision are over. Now it would be read the reviews, chuck out $900, wait a week and hope for the best. Nope, ain't gonna happen.
  17. No, not yet especially for the price that they are asking for it. Prefer to wait for the EP-2 with so called EVF and built-in flash. I hope a micro 4/3's version of the "OM-2/3/4" is released.
  18. Yes, if they lowered the price by $3-400 and if a compact, lightweight 70-200 zoom was available. Also the camera has to be small enough and will check this as soon as it's available here. This could swing it into the definate 'no' category.
  19. Yes, around Sep-Oct when I have saved up the money for it and it has matured a little. Hopefully some 3rd party accessories will be available by then.
  20. Maybe, but I want to andle one first and Samsung is releasing the NX so......
  21. I'll wait for EP2 with EVF and flash. Camera phones can have flash, why can't it? No EVF means it's virtually impossible to
    shoot in bright light, and as I'm also long-sighted, I have to hold the camera at arms length. Not good for shake-free

    Later I'll also wait for M43 70-300. Then it would make a superb lightweight birding system.
  22. No. I've already tried it at a shop and didn't like it. I never like the idea of putting a digital camera into a body designed like a "nostalgic" film camera.
  23. FWIW, I tried the 17/2.8 lens on my Panasonic G1 (with the latest firmware ver. 1.3). The AF speed of this combo was essentially the same as the E-P1&17/2.8 combo, which I found slower than the G1&14-45 kit (with the latest firmware 1.1) combo.
  24. [[I have to hold the camera at arms length. Not good for shake-free pictures.]]
    You speak from direct experience on this?
  25. No.
    According to dof master:
    4/3: 17/2.8 @ 2m = 1.27m dof (!!!!!)
    35mm QL17: 40mm/1.7 @ 2m = 0.25m dof
    Apples to oranges but its kinda like a digital rf replacement for me, and the lack of dof control doesn't cut it for me. Pity though, the concept is brilliant!
  26. Hmmm...having seen the review above I may now what until second generation. All depends on if I can get my hands on one and try it out.
  27. John Kelly wrote: EP-1 isn't designed for bug/flower photos, it's obviously designed substantially for people-pics.​
    You really think so? I thought cameras were designed for "the average user", which as we all know, doesn't exist. It's why there are so many qualified responses in this thread. I wish Olympus had had the balls, excuse me, the audacity to design a camera for the street shooter. That way all we would see in this thread would be "YES" or "NO".
    As for my own reply: I think the E-P2 is more likely to be what I would want this type of camera to be, but if I had the spare cash right now I would buy an E-P1. Clearly, it's not enticing enough to make me want to sell some gear to produce the needed funds :)
  28. Akira's comments have got me having second thoughts too. It is only the second (not counting the pricey GH-1) edition of micro four thirds. Maybe it is a good idea to wait for the next offering if I am not seduced by the Dark Side of the Force.. Elegance in design and layout are of interest but not compelling...I am also anxious to see what Olympus's next flagship model of 4/3 is going to be. Meaning this-I could use the money for EP-1 plus some add ons commands which is not insignificant to help finance an upgrade to my well liked E-1. I may back off and think with caution- bumps ahead.
    I bet Ritz in Ala Moana will have a sample to look at. It will attract fashionistas who still have pocket change to travel. It is nevertheless an exciting thing to get the juices flowing. If a one lens deal, as with the 17mm and OVF, that is not a sales closer. Has to have a wider appeal.
    Akira, as you see I welcome even more of your thoughts if you want to flesh out your evaluation. What do other Olympians in Japan ( a market for small and elegant)think of the EP-1 versus say the Panasonic G-1 approach. And especially the MSRP price of the kit and the quality of first lenses to 'come to the party' in this format? I happen to think the standard 4/3 still has some redeeming qualities and am going to get max use of the nice lenses I bought for my E-1.
    I think the idea of my using FD Canon is still interesting but is less of an appeal now that I think of it. Wish I could have a free trial of that combo to convince myself that it would not be a day to day value. A personal take. I am mainly a people shooter. And need one travel small one (which I have more or less in the Coolpix P 5000. The best I could find at the time to fit that size under five hundred US bucks.)
  29. No. No viewfinder, no sale. Especially at the rather high price point.
    Also, although it's hard to tell from pictures, it looks too small, and not very ergonomically shaped. I would much prefer something shaped and sized more like the E420-E620, or Panasonic G-1.
  30. Yes... when it cost's under $500 for the camera and an OM adapter.
  31. No, too many compromises to be a decent street photography cam...
  32. The EP-1 is not for me. I insist on a real viewfinder! But I am very interested in the "EP-2" as described by Zone 10--with an EVF. I seek an OM replacement for the digital age. Light weight, and a good viewfinder, are vital. The "tunnel vision" viewfinders in most DSLR's are no match for the glorious viewfinder in my OM. I am hoping that the EP-2's EVF will be at a minimum better (in effective magnification) than the E-620, my previous candidate for purchase (which I have abandoned as it's not much smaller than an OM).
    There is no reason why EVF's cannot be improved over time to become really good and acceptable replacements for a good-ol' glass pentaprism. Please give us good magnification and no "tunnel vision".
  33. NO.....too expensive, but it looks brilliant...grin
  34. Gerry, I find that the reaction of Japanese people to E-P1 is not very different from that of people outside Japan. One thing I noticed is that a large portion of people who are interested in E-P1 seem to have been shooting with P&S cameras, which is well understandable.
    The prices of Olympus cameras are "open", so there's no MSRP. According to the price comparison site best known in Japan (kakaku.com), today's lowest offered prices for different kits are: JPY 80,325 (body only), JPY 98,400 (body, 17/2.8 and OVF for 17/2.8) and JPY 116,770 (body, 14-42 zoom, 17/2.8 and OVF for 17/2.8).
  35. yes, on the waiting list
  36. No
    No viewfinder
    Not that compact (still need a bag or pouch...may as well get ghe G1)
    Cheers! Jay
  37. N0...
  38. No, I will not buy it. Not yet.
    A great new camera - but also a victory of the marketing people versus the engineers. As usual. They want to cash in on the success of the Pen and make the resemblance as close as possible
    Tomorrow everything is cheaper and better - that is the rule of the digital age.
    I will buy it, when it gets an articulated screen. Next year.
    A shame that it hasn’t - no concept begs more for an articulated screen than the E P-1.
    When it has the articulated screen, it will be my perfect street shooter - preferable to all existing alternatives. Aperfect back up for the E’s.
    Olympus & Panasonic created a new+ next generation of HQ cameras - in a couple of years, most of us will shoot them.
    You actually can't call them a DSLR any more, the inheritage from the analog age will be gone, no R (=Reflex) needed any more, and for god's sake, eventually our luggage will be smaller again, what we expected, when we sold our Nikons, Canons, Monoltas and OMs to buy a digital camera.
    Can you help me with the right name, as catchy as DSLR, to describe the eVf equipped DCs?

    W mm

    H mm

    D mm

    Weight g
    Olympus E P-1




    Rollei 35




    See also the photos for the comparison. Both cameras have that solid “brick” feeling. I like to get my hands on a P-1 and do a real comparison.
  39. Well, here is the P-1 from the Olympus website. Compare it!
  40. Seems like Amazon got a good deal (bulk order?) on the EP-1/+17mm+/OVF kit ( Akira, when I compare what the dollar to yen ratio this month is, very good deal on line here.) MSRP used to be a kind of polite fiction in U.S. , but now it seems the initial three month price if a camera is brand new and HOT...
    I am guessing margins are tight enough that the big online outfits have to 'strike while the iron is hot.' and I would do the same....For an item in the $1000.00 range I wonder how much actual profit they make.Maybe not a whole lot. I think the EP-1 will sell very very well,--to the general population-the p and s upscalers- because, like the iPhone,it is small, pretty, and desirable as another slick handheld toy . Some things do not change re fashion. Optical or no optical finder.
    As an off subject aside, there was a time when the military exchanges in Japan in Yokosoka, (known as A33 to the sailors) used to sell cameras at unbelievable good prices, way below Akihabara and Shinjuku ( if I rememberthe names)although it was fun to look at the wares in such places. I don't recall- do some of the Japanese vendors still negotiate prices. Not here. But I try to negotiate shippping and handling which sometimes succeeds. (A personal message to Patrick Dempsey, Hey, in six months check out Tijuana and Juarez for special deals just for you :))
  41. NO!
    I have reviewed the reviews and have analyzed the marketing strategy. It seems that nostalgia is key; those who owned/used the Pen cameras of old may find this camera of interest. In terms of performance and handling, Olympus forgot one major item... an optical viewfinder, a la Leica M8. It's my understanding that one would have to purchase an add-on viewfinder.
    From what I can gather from all of the discussions in this thread and others, inclusive of the reviews, the Olympus PEN E-P1 is a glorified point-n-shoot with the ability of interchangeable lenses. I don't think it will be a BIG seller. Consequently, the folks at Olympus will re-think their marketing strategy and offer something on the lines of a true digital rangefinder.
  42. Bought it yesterday! Wasn't too worried about the lack of a viewfinder, as it's replacing my LX2 (never could find the LX3 in stock, too bad for Panasonic) which doesn't have a viewfinder either. I was worried about whether the LCD would be responsive enough or have a slight lag that I've seen in lower end P&Ss. I was very glad to see that wasn't the case.
    Also, personally, I don't see the point of an EVF since it would still have the same limitations of an LCD for me, the biggest minus being absolutely poor low light performance.
    In any case, I am absolutely in love with the camera. Slightly disappointed with the lens, especially the electronic manual focus, but I guess this is what allowed them to make it so compactable.
  43. No. Too expensive. I like the look of it, and I think it would make great pics, but I cannot justify the expense (already have a 4/3 dSLR). If I were a rich man...
  44. Yes! In fact I now have the camera and both the zoom and 17mm lens. Much better image quality and color than is available on any P&S, and only slightly larger in size. I don't want or need a viewfinder, the LCD is just fine, in bright light or for critical manual focus I use a Hoodman 3" loupe. As an all around carry everywhere camera, I've found nothing better.
  45. Bob Dickerson, fine shot of the camera and the legendary Domke bag, canvas hallmark of the serious shooter...What is that cool rectangular lens hood set screwed on in front? I was under the impression that the 14-42 front element rotates a bit (?). But it sure adds photogenic appeal..... Contrary to Ken's prediction above, once it drops about a hundred and gets a Highly Recommended (Just) review there will be a lot of sales. A new category will take about six months to land on its feet Now, what does Panasonic do next. I know,dro the price of he GH-1 and sell them to the still/video gang. The EP-1 does seem a design tour de force. And your photo does it justice, Bob D. My compliments. ( I can hear others holler out"tour de farce "what else is new:))
  46. yeah, i would buy it in a flash if i had the money. help i need a grant or another stimulus check!ll
  47. I wasn't about to give it a second thought until I tried it. I like the controls, I like the feeling of solidity and most of all I like that it has an English menu. Panasonic has been adamant about not providing an English or other foreign language menu in Japan. I'd have to buy a G1 overseas. I want to buy my camera where I can take it back to the shop if something goes wrong. I thought the lack of a traditional viewfinder would put me off but it didn't. So when I do get this Olympus I will cease to be an old fogey who insists the only way to take photos is squinting through a viewfinder and join the tabooed and body-pierced youth in trying something that is for me totally radical.
    Yes, I'm going to get that little devil and use Leica and Canon FD lenses on it.
  48. Seriously thought about it but no view finder and no build in flash turned me off a bit. Mostly the viewfinder. Looks like a step in the right direction. I hate p/s cameras and my DSLR's are a bit to big for casual use.
  49. Hello Bob
    Gerry already asked "What is that cool rectangular lens hood set screwed on in front?"
    Do you mind lettings us know what lens hood that is?
    Thanks a lot!
  50. I think the camera is interesting but I wont be buying it. I come from the recent Canon camp but have owned Olympus cameras in the past and they make a decent camera. That being said 2 things bother me about it:
    1. No viewfinder.
    2. No flash. Yes I know an onboard flash would be small and not very powerful but its useful at times when taking pictures of people and things closer.
    I have had a Canon 10D in the past but the weight and bulk killed me. I sold it and now my primary camera right now is a Canon G9. Frankly it takes great pictures in most conditions except at high ISO. I know they did not include a viewfinder nor flash for aesthetic reasons as the original Pen did not have a flash but I think its a mistake. My G9 has both a flash and a viewfinder.
    I will wait till I see what else comes on the market before I buy.
  51. No. I too live in Japan and the photo magazines are awash with reviews of the camera. I'll take an up-close-and-personal look this weekend to verify my decision. The interesting thing about all the hype is that it has kindled my interest in the old Pen F. I may actually buy one of those rather than the EP1.
  52. Yes, I will buy it now, as it got an articulated screen.
    Her name is NEX-5, her manufacturer is Sony. See my article from July 10.
    By the way, I shoot Panasonic G1 in the meanwhile. One of the few things missing is IIS, as the Olympus is still missing an articulated screen - you could make an excellent camera combining both...
    You can see a little comparison between the Pana G1 and the Contax G1 by hitting the G-Spot on my website.
    I just sold my E3, as I see no sense in 4/3rds. DSLE will be the future. I still need a "2x cropfactor" camera and thinking of replacing the excellent G1 with a IIS body E-PL1 or E-P2 or even the G2 w/o......

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