Updated (June, 2011): Compare the Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 vs Olympus PEN E-PL2

Olympus PEN E-PL2 vs Olympus PEN E-PL1

Winner
Olympus PEN E-PL2

42

Olympus PEN E-PL1

39

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-PL2

In-camera panoramas
Panorama
Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
Movie continuous focus
Movie continuous focus
Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
Fast shutter speed
Fastest shutter speed
1/4000 of a second
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
External flash not needed
 

Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-PL1

Built-in flash
Built-in flash
External flash not needed

differences

Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-PL2

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Shutter lag
Much less shutter lag
434 ms vs 820 ms
Help
Around 50% less delay when taking photos
Panorama
Can create panoramas in-camera
Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
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
1300 ms vs 2200 ms
Help
More than 40% less delay when turning on
Low light performance
Slightly lower noise at high ISO
573 ISO vs 487 ISO
Help
The PEN E-PL2 has a slight edge (0.2 f-stops) in low noise, high ISO performance
Fastest shutter speed
Much faster max shutter speed
1/4000s vs 1/2000s
Help
2x faster max shutter speed
Olympus PEN E-PL2 Learn more about
the Olympus PEN E-PL2

Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-PL1

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Color depth
Better color depth
21.5 bits vs 21.4 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.1 more bits of color
Lowest price
Cheaper
$419.00 vs $647.45
Help
The best price we've seen is $228 cheaper (around 40% less)
Weight
Slightly lighter
334 g vs 362 g
Help
Around 10% lighter
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
Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus PEN E-PL2 42
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        39 Olympus PEN E-PL1 Olympus PEN E-PL1
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              similarities

              Compared to recent mirrorless cameras

              Common Strengths
              Image stabilization Good image stabilization Help
              Sensor shift
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              Longest exposure Long exposures Help
              60 seconds
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Built-in flash Each has a built-in flash Help
              External flash not needed
              Common Weaknesses
              Fastest shutter speed Slow max shutter speed Help
              PEN E-PL21/4000s
              PEN E-PL11/2000s
              Light sensitivity (boost) No boost ISO Help
              Lacks boost light sensitivity
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              PEN E-PL210.2 EV
              PEN E-PL110.1 EV
              Shutter lag Significant shutter lag Help
              PEN E-PL2434 ms
              PEN E-PL1820 ms
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              12.2 MP
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
              0
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons
              Focus points Few focus points Help
              11
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              PEN E-PL2460k dots
              PEN E-PL1230k 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
              PEN E-PL221.4 bits
              PEN E-PL121.5 bits
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              PEN E-PL255.0
              PEN E-PL154.0
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Battery life Few shots per battery charge Help
              PEN E-PL2280 shots
              PEN E-PL1290 shots
              Continuous shooting Slow continuous shooting Help
              3 fps
              Movie format Both shoot high resolution HD movies Help
              720p @ 30fps
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              PEN E-PL2573 ISO
              PEN E-PL1487 ISO

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

              Olympus PEN E-PL3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $396 body only

              $245 with 14-42mm lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              3D Captures 3D images
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Startup delay Has slightly more startup delay
              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              3D Captures 3D images
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Startup delay Has slightly more startup delay
              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $484 with 14-42mm lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor
              Olympus PEN E-P1

              Olympus PEN E-P1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $250 body only

              $390 with 14-42mm lens

              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Shutter lag Has much more shutter lag
              Olympus PEN E-P3

              Olympus PEN E-P3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $1,345 body only

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Screen resolution Has a slightly higher resolution screen
              Lowest price Is significantly more expensive
              Color depth Has slightly less color depth
              Olympus OM-D E-M5

              Olympus OM-D E-M5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $493 - $1,099 body only

              $899 - $1,390 with 14-42mm lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Built-in flash Doesn't have a built-in flash
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $197 body only

              $272 with 14mm lens

              Movie format Records higher quality movies
              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              Image stabilization Doesn't have image stabilization

              Olympus PEN E-PL2 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN E-P2

              Olympus PEN E-P2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $289 body only

              $429 with 17mm lens

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Color depth Better color depth
              Shutter lag Much more shutter lag
              Panorama Lacks in-camera panoramic stitching

              Olympus PEN E-PL1 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $342 body only

              $614 with 14-45mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Screen size Larger screen
              Image stabilization No image stabilization
              Color depth Worse color depth
              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Sony Alpha NEX-3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $400 body only

              $320 with 16-50mm lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Image stabilization No image stabilization
              Lens availability Fewer lenses available

              appearance

              Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus PEN E-PL1
              Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus PEN E-PL1
              Olympus PEN E-PL2 Olympus PEN E-PL1

              discussion

              Olympus PEN E-PL2
              PEN E-PL2
              Olympus

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              Olympus PEN E-PL1
              PEN E-PL1
              Olympus

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