Updated (August, 2012): Compare the Nikon 1 J2 vs Olympus PEN E-PL2

Nikon 1 J1

Winner
Nikon 1 J1

50

vs

Olympus PEN E-PL1

40

Olympus PEN E-PL1

Runner-up
     
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon 1 J1

High-speed framerate
High speed movies
1,200 fps
Continuous shooting
Rapid fire
60 fps
Startup delay
Almost no delay when powering up
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-PL1

Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift
Badge
Built-in focus motor
Autofocuses with more lenses
Interchangeable lenses
Interchangeable lenses
Many lenses to choose from
Sensor cleaning
Self cleaning sensor
Avoids dust in your photos
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Nikon J1

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Continuous shooting Shoots much faster 60 fps vs 3 fps
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20x faster continuous shooting
Shutter lag Much less shutter lag 94 ms vs 820 ms
Help
8.7x less delay when taking photos
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
Autofocus Faster video autofocus Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Shoot videos without worrying about focus
Focus points Many more focus points 135 vs 11
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Set focus accurately within the frame
Movie continuous focus Continuous video focus Yes vs No
Help
Record movies without worrying about focus
Screen size Larger screen 3.0" vs 2.7"
Help
More than 10% larger screen
Screen resolution Higher resolution screen 460k dots vs 230k dots
Help
2x higher resolution screen
Startup delay Significantly less startup delay 1400 ms vs 2200 ms
Help
Around 40% less delay when turning on
Dynamic range More dynamic range 11 EV vs 10.1 EV
Help
0.9 f-stops more dynamic range
Fastest shutter speed Much faster max shutter speed 1/16000s vs 1/2000s
Help
8x faster max shutter speed
Overall image quality Slightly better image quality 56.0 vs 54.0
Help
Almost the same
Size Smaller 106x61x29 mm vs 115x72x42 mm
Help
More than 40% smaller
Thickness Thinner 1.2" vs 1.7"
Help
Around 30% thinner
Lowest price Cheaper $198.00 vs $425.00
Help
The best price we've seen is $227 cheaper (2.1x less)
Weight Lighter 277 g vs 334 g
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Around 20% lighter
Nikon 1 J1 Learn more about
the Nikon J1

Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-PL1

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Image stabilization Image stabilization Sensor shift vs None
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Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Lens availability Much more lenses available 40 lenses vs 8 lenses
Help
5x more lenses available
Low light performance Slightly lower noise at high ISO 487 ISO vs 372 ISO
Help
The PEN E-PL1 has a slight edge (0.4 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Sensor cleaning Has a self cleaning sensor Yes vs No
Help
Removes dust from the sensor automatically, avoiding spots in photos
Battery life Longer battery life 290 shots vs 230 shots
Help
Around 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
Sensor size Larger sensor Four thirds 17.3x13.0mm vs Nikon CX 13.2x8.8mm
Help
More than 90% larger sensor
External flash Supports an external flash Yes vs No
Help
An external flash often produces better looking flash images
Longest exposure Longer exposures 60s vs 30s
Help
2x longer exposures
Olympus PEN E-PL1 Learn more about
the Olympus PEN E-PL1
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 50
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        40 Olympus PEN E-PL1 Olympus PEN E-PL1
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              similarities

              Compared to recent mirrorless cameras

              Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
              Lowest price Inexpensive Help
              J1:$198.00
              PEN E-PL1:$425.00
              Built-in flash Each has a built-in flash Help
              External flash not needed
              Panorama Neither camera stitches together panoramas Help
              You could stitch photos in post
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Light sensitivity Poor maximum light sensitivity Help
              3,200 ISO
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              J1:10 MP
              PEN E-PL1:12.2 MP
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              J1:11 EV
              PEN E-PL1:10.1 EV
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons
              Battery life Few shots per battery charge Help
              J1:230 shots
              PEN E-PL1:290 shots
              External mic jack Neither has an external mic jack Help
              Limited to the in-camera mic
              3D Neither camera can take 3D photos Help
              No 3d support
              Viewfinder No viewfinders Help
              Can only preview photos on the screen
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              J1:460k dots
              PEN E-PL1:230k dots
              Color depth Poor color depth Help
              21.5 bits
              Sensor size Very small sensors Help
              J1:Nikon CX 13.2x8.8mm
              PEN E-PL1:Four thirds 17.3x13.0mm
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              J1:56.0
              PEN E-PL1:54.0
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              J1:372 ISO
              PEN E-PL1:487 ISO

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Canon EOS M

              Canon EOS M

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $360 with 18-55mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $490 body only

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $245 with 14-42mm lens

              Panorama Creates panoramas in-camera
              3D Captures 3D images
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Nikon D3100

              Nikon D3100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $389 - $427 with 18-55mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Olympus PEN E-PM2

              Olympus PEN E-PM2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $399 with 14-42mm, 40-150mm lenses

              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
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $309 - $400 with 14-42mm lens

              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              3D Captures 3D images
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Shutter lag Has significantly more shutter lag
              Canon Rebel T3

              Canon Rebel T3

              Entry-level DSLR

              $276 - $298 body only

              $385 - $450 with 18-55mm lens

              Low light performance Is slightly less noisy at high ISO
              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker

              Nikon 1 J1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Nikon 1 J3

              Nikon 1 J3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $585 with 10-100mm 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 S1

              Nikon 1 S1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $265 with 11-2mm lens

              Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Lowest price Slightly more expensive
              Nikon 1 V1

              Nikon 1 V1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $315 body only

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Autofocus Slower autofocus
              Size Larger
              Nikon 1 J2

              Nikon 1 J2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $326 with 10-30mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

              Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100

              Pro digicam

              $548

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Continuous shooting Shoots much slower
              High-speed framerate Doesn't record high-speed movies

              Olympus PEN E-PL1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $238 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $484 with 14-42mm lens

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Built-in flash No built-in flash
              Lowest price Slightly more expensive
              Olympus PEN E-PL2

              Olympus PEN E-PL2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $297 with 14-42mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Battery life Slightly shorter battery life
              Olympus PEN E-P1

              Olympus PEN E-P1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $275 body only

              $309 with 17mm lens

              Screen size Larger screen
              Fastest shutter speed Much faster max shutter speed
              Shutter lag Much more shutter lag
              Startup delay More startup delay

              appearance

              Nikon 1 J1 Olympus PEN E-PL1
              Nikon 1 J1 Olympus PEN E-PL1
              Nikon 1 J1 Olympus PEN E-PL1

              discussion

              Nikon 1 J1
              1 J1
              Nikon

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              Olympus PEN E-PL1
              PEN E-PL1
              Olympus

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