Updated (June 2011): Compare the Olympus PEN E-P3 vs Olympus PEN E-PM1

Olympus PEN E-P3 vs Olympus PEN E-PM1

Winner
Olympus PEN E-P3

48

Olympus PEN E-PM1

45

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-P3

High resolution screen
Screen resolution
614k dots
Touch screen
Touch screen
Fewer buttons
Almost no delay when powering up
Startup delay
900 ms startup delay
OLED Screen
Screen type
Bright and vivid
 

Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-PM1

Panorama
In-camera panoramas
Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
3D
Takes 3D photos
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
Shutter lag
Barely any delay taking photos
246 ms shutter lag
Sensor type
CMOS Sensor
Better in low light

Items often bought with the E-P3 or E-PM1

galleries

Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Olympus PEN E-P3.
Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Olympus PEN E-PM1.

differences

Advantages of the Olympus E-P3

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Screen type
Has an OLED screen
OLED vs LCD
Help
OLED screens are often brighter and more vibrant than typical LCD screens
Touch screen
Has a touch screen
Yes vs No
Help
Fewer buttons to worry about and direct interaction with camera menus
Startup delay
Significantly less startup delay
900 ms vs 1800 ms
Help
2x less delay when turning on
Screen resolution
Higher resolution screen
614k dots vs 460k dots
Help
More than 30% higher resolution screen
Shutter lag
Slightly less shutter lag
222 ms vs 246 ms
Help
Around 10% less delay when taking photos
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
Olympus PEN E-P3 Learn more about
the Olympus E-P3

Advantages of the Olympus E-PM1

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Color depth
Better color depth
21 bits vs 20.8 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.2 more bits of color
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
10.3 EV vs 10.1 EV
Help
0.4 f-stops more dynamic range
Light sensitivity
Better maximum light sensitivity
12,800 ISO vs 1,600 ISO
Help
The E-PM1's maximum light sensitivity is 6 f-stops better
Continuous shooting
Shoots slightly faster
5.5 fps vs 3 fps
Help
More than 80% faster continuous shooting
Weight
Lighter
263 g vs 369 g
Help
Around 30% lighter
Size
Slightly smaller
110×64×34 mm vs 122×69×34 mm
Help
Around 20% smaller
Lowest price
Slightly cheaper
$199.00 vs $499.00
Help
The best price we've seen is $300 cheaper (2.5x less)
Olympus PEN E-PM1 Learn more about
the Olympus E-PM1
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Olympus PEN E-P3 Olympus PEN E-P3 48
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        45 Olympus PEN E-PM1 Olympus PEN E-PM1
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              similarities

              Compared to recent mirrorless cameras

              Common Strengths
              3D Both can take 3D photos, many cameras like these don't Help
              View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
              Image stabilization Good image stabilization Help
              1. Sensor shift
              Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
              Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
              Lens availability Many lenses available Help
              108 lenses
              Panorama In-camera panoramas Help
              Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
              Size Fairly small Help
              E-P3122×69×34 mm
              E-PM1110×64×34 mm
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              Thickness Thin Help
              1.3"
              Longest exposure Long exposures Help
              60 seconds
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Common Weaknesses
              Fastest shutter speed Slow max shutter speed Help
              1/4000 of a second
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              E-P310.1 EV
              E-PM110.3 EV
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              Color depth Poor color depth Help
              E-P320.8 bits
              E-PM121 bits
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              12.2 MP
              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
              Focus points Few focus points Help
              35
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              E-P3614k dots
              E-PM1460k dots
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              E-P351.0
              E-PM152.0
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Autofocus Slower contrast detection autofocus Help
              slower focusing
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              E-P3536 ISO
              E-PM1499 ISO

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

              Olympus PEN E-PL3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $591 body only

              $230 with 14-42mm lens

              Startup delay Has significantly more startup delay
              Olympus PEN E-PM2

              Olympus PEN E-PM2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $849 with 14-42mm lens

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Color depth Has significantly more color depth
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $490 with 14-42mm lens

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Color depth Has significantly more color depth
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor
              Olympus PEN E-PL1

              Olympus PEN E-PL1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $260 with 14-42mm lens

              Color depth Has slightly more color depth
              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Samsung NX3000

              Samsung NX3000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $300 - $350 with 20-50mm lens

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Screen flips out Has a screen which flips out
              Longest exposure Much shorter exposures
              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
              Olympus OM-D E-M5

              Olympus OM-D E-M5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $479 - $1,099 body only

              $499 - $999 with 14-42mm lens

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Olympus PEN E-PL6

              Olympus PEN E-PL6

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $299 with 14-42mm lens

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Screen flips out Has a screen which flips out

              Olympus PEN E-P3 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus Pen E-P5

              Olympus Pen E-P5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $649 - $799 body only

              $1,249 with 17mm lens

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Overall image quality Significantly better image quality
              Screen type Doesn't have an OLED screen
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $350 body only

              $494 with 14-42mm lens

              HDR Has in-camera HDR
              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Image stabilization No image stabilization
              Screen type Doesn't have an OLED screen

              Olympus PEN E-PM1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF7

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF7

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $348 body only

              $460 - $499 with 12-32mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Battery life Shorter battery life
              External flash No external flash support

              appearance

              Olympus PEN E-P3 Olympus PEN E-PM1
              Olympus PEN E-P3 Olympus PEN E-PM1
              Olympus PEN E-P3 Olympus PEN E-PM1

              discussion

              Olympus PEN E-P3
              PEN E-P3
              Olympus

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              Olympus PEN E-PM1
              PEN E-PM1
              Olympus

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