Updated (March, 2012): Compare the Nikon D3200 vs Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

Nikon D3100

Winner
Nikon D3100

50

vs

Olympus PEN E-PL2

33

Olympus PEN E-PL2

Runner-up
     
 

Reasons to buy the Nikon D3100

Movie format
Full HD
1080p @ 24fps
Startup delay
Almost no delay when powering up
400 ms startup delay
Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
Badge
Autofocuses shooting video
Contrast detection
 

Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-PL2

Size
Really small
Mid size 115x72x42 mm
Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift
Panorama
In-camera panoramas
Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Nikon D3100

Report a correction
Autofocus Faster autofocus Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Catch candid moments easily
Movie format Higher resolution movies 1080p @ 24fps vs 720p @ 30fps
Help
Shoots higher resolution Full HD (1080p) video but at a lower frame rate
Supports 24p Supports 24p Yes vs No
Help
Get that real film feel
Overall image quality Better image quality 67.0 vs 55.0
Help
More than 20% better image quality
Lens availability Much more lenses available 205 lenses vs 40 lenses
Help
More than 5x more lenses available
Startup delay Significantly less startup delay 400 ms vs 1300 ms
Help
3.2x less delay when turning on
Color depth Better color depth 22.5 bits vs 21.4 bits
Help
Distinguishes 1.1 more bits of color
Dynamic range More dynamic range 11.3 EV vs 10.2 EV
Help
1.1 f-stops more dynamic range
Shutter lag Significantly less shutter lag 279 ms vs 434 ms
Help
Around 40% less delay when taking photos
Battery life Longer battery life 550 shots vs 280 shots
Help
Around 2x more shots per battery charge
Sensor size Larger sensor APS-C 23.1x15.4mm vs Four thirds 17.3x13.0mm
Help
Around 60% larger sensor
Viewfinder Has a viewfinder Pentamirror vs None
Help
A viewfinder can help save battery life by keeping the screen turned off
Low light performance Lower noise at high ISO 919 ISO vs 573 ISO
Help
The D3100 has a slight edge (0.7 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
True resolution Higher true resolution 14.2 MP vs 12.2 MP
Help
Capture around 20% more detail in your photos
Light sensitivity (boost) Has boost ISO 12,800 ISO vs None
Help
Allows taking photos in darker situations, often at the cost of additional noise in the image
Nikon D3100 Learn more about
the Nikon D3100

Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-PL2

Report a correction
Image stabilization Image stabilization Sensor shift vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Size Significantly smaller 115x72x42 mm vs 124x96x73 mm
Help
2.5x smaller
Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
Screen resolution Higher resolution screen 460k dots vs 230k dots
Help
2x higher resolution screen
Thickness Thinner 1.7" vs 2.9"
Help
More than 40% thinner
Weight Lighter 362 g vs 505 g
Help
Around 30% lighter
Light sensitivity Better maximum light sensitivity 6,400 ISO vs 3,200 ISO
Help
The PEN E-PL2's maximum light sensitivity is 1 f-stop better
Longest exposure Longer exposures 60s vs 30s
Help
2x longer exposures
Olympus PEN E-PL2 Learn more about
the Olympus PEN E-PL2
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Nikon D3100 Nikon D3100 50
Retailer
    Style
      Color
        You save

        vs

        33 Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus PEN E-PL2

        similarities

        Compared to recent digital cameras

        Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
        Interchangeable lenses Both support interchangeable lenses, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
        Many lenses to choose from
        Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
        Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
        Supports RAW Supports RAW Help
        Better editing
        Sensor size Large sensors Help
        D3100:APS-C 23.1x15.4mm
        PEN E-PL2:Four thirds 17.3x13.0mm
        Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
        Avoids dust in your photos
        External flash Support external flash Help
        Better lighting
        Sensor type Better sensor types Help
        D3100:CMOS
        PEN E-PL2:NMOS
        HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
        You could do HDR manually
        Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
        D3100:11.3 EV
        PEN E-PL2:10.2 EV
        Focus points Few focus points Help
        11
        Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
        D3100:1
        PEN E-PL2:0
        Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
        3 fps
        Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
        Less flexible
        3D Neither camera can take 3D photos Help
        No 3d support

        dxomark

        DXOMark

        competitors

        Shared Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Canon Rebel T3

        Canon Rebel T3

        Entry-level DSLR

        $225 - $389 body only

        $399 - $550 with 18-55mm lens

        Battery life Has a slightly longer battery life
        Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
        Thickness Is thicker

        Nikon D3100 Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Nikon D3200

        Nikon D3200

        Entry-level DSLR

        $319 body only

        $477 with 18-55mm lens

        Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
        Overall image quality Better image quality
        Canon EOS Rebel T5

        Canon EOS Rebel T5

        Entry-level DSLR

        $681 - $700 body only

        $499 - $822 with 18-55mm lens

        Screen resolution Higher resolution screen
        True resolution Higher true resolution
        Overall image quality Slightly worse image quality
        Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
        Nikon D5100

        Nikon D5100

        Entry-level DSLR

        $378 - $415 body only

        $495 - $562 with 18-55mm lens

        Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
        Overall image quality Better image quality
        Size Slightly larger
        Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
        Canon Rebel T3i

        Canon Rebel T3i

        Entry-level DSLR

        $499 - $648 body only

        $200 - $570 with 18-55mm lens

        Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
        External mic jack Has an external mic jack
        Autofocus Lacks video autofocus
        Startup delay Significantly more startup delay
        Nikon D3300

        Nikon D3300

        Entry-level DSLR

        $547 with 18-55mm lens

        Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
        Overall image quality Better image quality
        Startup delay Much more startup delay
        Lowest price More expensive

        Olympus PEN E-PL2 Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Olympus PEN E-PL1

        Olympus PEN E-PL1

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $550 with 14-42mm lens

        Color depth Better color depth
        Weight Slightly lighter
        Shutter lag Much more shutter lag
        Screen size Smaller screen
        Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

        Olympus PEN E-PL3

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $285 with 14-42mm lens

        Movie format Higher resolution movies
        3D Takes 3D photos
        Startup delay More startup delay
        Built-in flash No built-in flash
        Olympus PEN E-P2

        Olympus PEN E-P2

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $1,099 with 14-42mm lens

        Size Slightly smaller
        Dynamic range More dynamic range
        Shutter lag Much more shutter lag
        Panorama Lacks in-camera panoramic stitching
        Olympus PEN E-PM1

        Olympus PEN E-PM1

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $975 with 14-150mm lens

        Movie format Higher resolution movies
        3D Takes 3D photos
        Startup delay More startup delay
        Built-in flash No built-in flash
        Olympus PEN E-PM2

        Olympus PEN E-PM2

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        Overall image quality Significantly better image quality
        Movie format Higher resolution movies
        Built-in flash No built-in flash

        appearance

        Nikon D3100 Olympus PEN E-PL2
        Nikon D3100 Olympus PEN E-PL2
        Nikon D3100 Olympus PEN E-PL2

        discussion

        Nikon D3100
        D3100
        Nikon

        Report a correction
        Olympus PEN E-PL2
        PEN E-PL2
        Olympus

        Report a correction

        Showing 0 comments