Updated (August, 2012): Compare the Nikon 1 J2 vs Olympus PEN E-P3

Nikon 1 J1 vs Olympus PEN E-P2

Winner
Nikon 1 J1

45

Olympus PEN E-P2

41

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Nikon 1 J1

High speed movies
High-speed framerate
1,200 fps
Rapid fire
Continuous shooting
60 fps
Almost no delay when powering up
Startup delay
1400 ms startup delay
Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
 

Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-P2

Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift
Lens availability
Slightly more lenses available
40 lenses
External flash
External flash
Better lighting
Longest exposure
Long exposures
60 seconds

differences

Advantages of the Nikon J1

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Shutter lag
Much less shutter lag
94 ms vs 956 ms
Help
10.2x less delay when taking photos
Continuous shooting
Shoots much faster
60 fps vs 3 fps
Help
20x faster continuous shooting
High-speed framerate
Records high-speed movies
1,200 fps vs None
Help
Capture events too fast for the naked eye and play them back in super-slow motion
Autofocus
Faster autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Catch candid moments easily
Movie format
Higher resolution movies
1080p @ 30fps vs 720p @ 30fps
Help
Shoots higher resolution Full HD (1080p) video
Screen resolution
Higher resolution screen
460k dots vs 230k dots
Help
2x higher resolution screen
Startup delay
Significantly less startup delay
1400 ms vs 2300 ms
Help
Around 40% less delay when turning on
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
11 EV vs 10.4 EV
Help
0.6 f-stops more dynamic range
Fastest shutter speed
Much faster max shutter speed
1/16000s vs 1/4000s
Help
4x faster max shutter speed
Size
Smaller
106x61x29 mm vs 121x70x36 mm
Help
Around 40% smaller
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
Yes vs No
Help
A built-in flash is useful for taking indoor shots where there is little light
Weight
Lighter
277 g vs 355 g
Help
More than 20% lighter
Thickness
Thinner
1.2" vs 1.4"
Help
Around 20% thinner
Lowest price
Slightly cheaper
$214.00 vs $289.00
Help
The best price we've seen is $75 cheaper (around 30% less)
Nikon 1 J1 Learn more about
the Nikon J1

Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-P2

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Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Lens availability
Significantly more lenses available
40 lenses vs 8 lenses
Help
5x more lenses available
Low light performance
Slightly lower noise at high ISO
505 ISO vs 372 ISO
Help
The PEN E-P2 has a slight edge (0.4 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
External flash
Supports an external flash
Yes vs No
Help
An external flash often produces better looking flash images
Battery life
Longer battery life
300 shots vs 230 shots
Help
More than 30% more shots per battery charge
True resolution
Higher true resolution
12.2 MP vs 10 MP
Help
Capture more than 20% more detail in your photos
Longest exposure
Much longer exposures
60s vs 30s
Help
2x longer exposures
Olympus PEN E-P2 Learn more about
the Olympus PEN E-P2
vs

recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent mirrorless cameras, and ignoring price

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon 1 J1 Nikon 1 J1 45
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        41 Olympus PEN E-P2 Olympus PEN E-P2
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              similarities

              Compared to recent mirrorless cameras

              Common Strengths
              Lowest price Inexpensive Help
              J1$214.00
              PEN E-P2$289.00
              Thickness Thin Help
              J11.2"
              PEN E-P21.4"
              Common Weaknesses
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
              You could stitch photos in post
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              J110 MP
              PEN E-P212.2 MP
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              J111 EV
              PEN E-P210.4 EV
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              J1460k dots
              PEN E-P2230k dots
              External mic jack Neither has an external mic jack Help
              Limited to the in-camera mic
              Viewfinder No viewfinders Help
              Can only preview photos on the screen
              Color depth Poor color depth Help
              21.5 bits
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              56.0
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              J1372 ISO
              PEN E-P2505 ISO

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              Panorama Creates panoramas in-camera
              3D Captures 3D images
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Autofocus Users slower contrast detection autofocus
              Canon EOS M

              Canon EOS M

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $239 body only

              $295 with 18-55mm lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Autofocus Users slower contrast detection autofocus
              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

              Olympus PEN E-PL3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $422 body only

              $245 with 14-42mm lens

              Panorama Creates panoramas in-camera
              3D Captures 3D images
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $514 body only

              $320 with 16-50mm lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Autofocus Users slower contrast detection autofocus
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $125 body only

              $280 with 14-42mm lens

              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              3D Captures 3D images
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Autofocus Users slower contrast detection autofocus
              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $483 with 14-42mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $419 body only

              $496 with 14-42mm lens

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker

              Nikon 1 J1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon 1 S1

              Nikon 1 S1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $149 with 11-2mm lens

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Weight Slightly lighter
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Nikon 1 J4

              Nikon 1 J4

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $320 - $375 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Autofocus Slower video autofocus
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Nikon 1 J3

              Nikon 1 J3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $270 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Overall image quality Worse image quality
              Nikon 1 V1

              Nikon 1 V1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $399 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Autofocus Slower autofocus
              Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
              Nikon 1 J2

              Nikon 1 J2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $290 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
              Color depth Worse color depth

              Olympus PEN E-P2 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN E-PL2

              Olympus PEN E-PL2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $641 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Olympus PEN E-P3

              Olympus PEN E-P3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $1,345 body only

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Screen type Has an OLED screen
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Overall image quality Worse image quality
              Olympus PEN E-P1

              Olympus PEN E-P1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $299 body only

              $386 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Much more shutter lag
              Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
              Olympus PEN E-PL1

              Olympus PEN E-PL1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $550 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Significantly less shutter lag
              Built-in flash Built-in flash
              Screen size Smaller screen
              Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
              Olympus PEN E-PM2

              Olympus PEN E-PM2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $503 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Lowest price More expensive

              appearance

              Nikon 1 J1 Olympus PEN E-P2
              Nikon 1 J1 Olympus PEN E-P2
              Nikon 1 J1 Olympus PEN E-P2

              discussion

              Nikon 1 J1
              1 J1
              Nikon

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              Olympus PEN E-P2
              PEN E-P2
              Olympus

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