Updated (June 2011): Compare the Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 vs Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

Olympus PEN E-PL3 vs Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

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Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3

44

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

43

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Reasons to buy the Olympus PEN E-PL3

In-camera panoramas
Panorama
Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
Barely any delay taking photos
Shutter lag
241 ms shutter lag
High ISO (boost)
Light sensitivity (boost)
12,800 ISO
Takes 3D photos
3D
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
 

Reasons to buy the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

Touch screen
Touch screen
Fewer buttons
Startup delay
Almost no delay when powering up
1000 ms startup delay
Built-in flash
Built-in flash
External flash not needed
3D
Takes 3D photos
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions

Items often bought with the Olympus E-PL3 or Panasonic DMC-GF2

galleries

Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3.
Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2.

differences

Advantages of the Olympus E-PL3

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Image stabilization
Image stabilization
  1. Sensor shift
vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Panorama
Can create panoramas in-camera
Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
Shutter lag
Less shutter lag
241 ms vs 337 ms
Help
Around 30% less delay when taking 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
Continuous shooting
Shoots slightly faster
5.5 fps vs 3.2 fps
Help
More than 70% faster continuous shooting
Focus points
Slightly more focus points
35 vs 23
Help
Set focus accurately within the frame
Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 Learn more about
the Olympus E-PL3

Advantages of the Panasonic DMC-GF2

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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
1000 ms vs 2100 ms
Help
2.1x less delay when turning on
Color depth
Better color depth
21.2 bits vs 20.9 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.3 more bits of color
Overall image quality
Slightly better image quality
54.0 vs 52.0
Help
Almost the same
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
Thickness
Slightly thinner
1.3" vs 1.5"
Help
More than 10% thinner
Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Learn more about
the Panasonic DMC-GF2
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recommendations

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

Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 Olympus PEN E-PL3 44
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      Color
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        vs
        43 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
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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
              Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
              Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
              Lens availability Many lenses available Help
              108 lenses
              Size Fairly small Help
              E-PL3110×64×37 mm
              DMC-GF2113×68×33 mm
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              Longest exposure Long exposures Help
              60 seconds
              Lowest price Inexpensive Help
              E-PL3$229.00
              DMC-GF2$177.00
              Thickness Thin Help
              E-PL31.5"
              DMC-GF21.3"
              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
              Light sensitivity (boost) One has boost ISO Help
              E-PL312,800 ISO
              DMC-GF2None
              HDR Neither has in-camera HDR Help
              You could do HDR manually
              Dynamic range Poor dynamic range Help
              10.3 EV
              Screen flips out No flip-out screens Help
              Less flexible
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              True resolution Capture low resolution images Help
              E-PL312.2 MP
              DMC-GF212 MP
              Screen resolution Low resolution screens Help
              460k dots
              Color depth Poor color depth Help
              E-PL320.9 bits
              DMC-GF221.2 bits
              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
              E-PL335
              DMC-GF223
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Overall image quality Low image quality Help
              E-PL352.0
              DMC-GF254.0
              Autofocus Slower contrast detection autofocus Help
              slower focusing
              Low light performance Above average noise at high ISO Help
              E-PL3499 ISO
              DMC-GF2506 ISO

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Olympus PEN E-PM1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $199 body only

              $270 with 14-42mm lens

              Startup delay Has significantly more startup delay
              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
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $109 body only

              $290 with 14-42mm lens

              External flash Doesn't support an external flash
              Shutter lag Has slightly more shutter lag
              Olympus PEN E-PL7

              Olympus PEN E-PL7

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $449 - $499 body only

              $549 - $599 with 14-42mm lens

              Overall image quality Has significantly better image quality
              Screen resolution Has a much higher resolution screen
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor
              Olympus PEN E-PL1

              Olympus PEN E-PL1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $253 with 14-42mm lens

              Fastest shutter speed Has a slower max shutter speed
              Thickness Is thicker
              Olympus PEN E-PL2

              Olympus PEN E-PL2

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $379 with 14-42mm lens

              Thickness Is thicker
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF5

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $328 body only

              $381 with 14-42mm lens

              Screen resolution Has a significantly higher resolution screen
              Shutter lag Has slightly less shutter lag
              External flash Doesn't support an external flash
              Startup delay Has slightly more startup delay

              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Olympus PEN E-PL5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $487 with 14-42mm lens

              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              Overall image quality Significantly better image quality
              Sensor type Has a CCD-family sensor
              Lowest price Slightly more expensive
              Olympus OM-D E-M10 II

              Olympus OM-D E-M10 II

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              Screen resolution Much higher resolution screen
              Viewfinder Has a viewfinder
              Size Larger
              Thickness Thicker
              Olympus PEN E-P3

              Olympus PEN E-P3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $1,345 body only

              $499 with 14-42mm lens

              Screen type Has an OLED screen
              Touch screen Has a touch screen
              Dynamic range Less dynamic range
              Light sensitivity Worse maximum light sensitivity

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-G5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $545 body only

              $368 with 14-42mm lens

              Screen resolution Significantly higher resolution screen
              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Size Significantly larger
              Thickness Much thicker
              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1

              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $342 body only

              $630 with 14-45mm lens

              Battery life Longer battery life
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Touch screen No touch screen

              appearance

              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2

              discussion

              Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3
              PEN E-PL3
              Olympus

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              Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2
              Lumix DMC-GF2
              Panasonic

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