Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 Review

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Overview of the Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 Camera

In overall, the cameras belonging to the Olympus PEN series have been well ranked, which include the E-PM1, the E-PL1 and the E-PL3. The Olympus PEN E-PM2, one of the newest cameras is not an exception. This is another powerful small DIL (digital interchangeable lens) model.

Not only the image quality but also the performance is very nice with this camera. There are several advanced features such as the large LCD touch screen, the resolution of larger than 16 MP. All of those features have been upgraded from the previous generation, the Olympus E-PM1, also known as the Olympus PEN Mini 1.

You may not see some high-end features that should have been included with the Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 such as the built-in GPS and an articulated LCD screen. The image quality is not as good as that of a DSLR model and you will have to buy it with a little bit high starting price.

This camera is still a powerful model and one of the greatest on the current market, though. You can buy the camera now at the slight drop of the manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $599 but its price is almost as twice as that of the Olympus E-PM1. In the case that you can bargain for a better price, this camera really deserves five stars. But actually, because the price of the PEN Mini E-PM1 has been pretty low on the current market, I feel a bit hesitated to recommend this Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2.

Obviously, the features of the PEN Mini 2 have been improved over the PEN Mini E-PM1, but regarding the price of the Mini 2, it is still not enough to justify that high price.

Brief Review of the Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 Camera

Specifications

  • The resolution is 16.1 megapixels
  • Optical zoom: N/A. The camera uses lenses which are interchangeable
  • The 3.0-inch LCD is a wide touch screen with the resolution of 460,000 pixels
  • The image size is 4608 x 3456 at maximum
  • The camera uses a Li-Ion battery which is rechargeable
  • The dimensions are 2.53 x 4.32 x 1.33 inches
  • The camera weighs 9.49 ounces (with the inclusion of the battery and memory card)
  • The 4/3 Image sensor uses the CMOS technology and has the measurement of 17.3 x 13.0 mm
  • A HD 1080p movie mode is supported

Pros

  • Image quality is very nice
  • The resolution of the LCD screen is high and widescreen format is convenient for shooting movies
  • The PM2 has small and nice looking design
  • The response times are fast
  • There is a great combination between the manual and automatic settings

Cons

  • There is no built-in flash unit
  • The image quality is not as good as with a DSLR
  • You may get a bit trouble in using the LCD touchscreen
  • The suggested price by the manufacture is a little over the budget of many photographers
  • It is a wide camera, which won’t attract everyone
Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 Camera Review Buy

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 Camera Review Buy

Detailed Review of the Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2

Image Quality

The image sensor is the most important improvement over the previous PEN E-PM1. In terms of the size of the image sensor, both are the same, but the 4/3 image sensor of the E-PM1 using CMOS technology has the higher 16.1 megapixels of resolution.

You can easily obtain images of sharpness and color accuracy with this image sensor. In addition, the image quality is also better even when you shoot photos in inadequate lighting conditions, in comparison with other similarly priced models.

Although the image quality is not as good as with a DSLR camera, but if you are the one who get accustomed to capturing images with point and shoot models, you can see a considerable improvement of the image quality in all lighting conditions.

You may not need to use the flash frequently, but there is an inclusion of a flash unit outside the camera body. This belongs to the basic kit with this camera. The overexposed photos may appear sometimes when you use the flash, especially when you select the full automatic mode.

Performance

The performance of the E-PM2 is very great. It just takes you very little time to start up the camera and you almost see no shutter lag. You’re going to able to shoot 8 frames at maximum in one second and there are some available various full-resolutions in the burst modes. The performance of the autofocus is also very fast when you shoot still images. You will be very amazed with the fast performance of the PEN Mini E-PM2 if you transfer from a previous point and shoot camera.

This Olympus camera has one of the greatest LCD screens that’s available on the current market. You can be easily satisfied with the brightness and sharpness of this screen. This LCD allows you to record videos at the wide 16:9 format screen, which is very nice. However, I also find it a little bit hard to make the screen exactly understand my touching commands sometimes.

The movie recording is good with this camera. But keep in mind that when you use the zoom lens during recording movies, you may find the autofocus slightly slower than I expect.

There is a variety of special effect with the E-PM2 that you can apply to make your photos more interesting. This does brings fun when you use the camera.

Design

The look of the cameras in the Olympus PEN series seems to remain unchanged through some years recently. It has a retro design and the DIL camera body is often small. The look of these products is very appealing to me, especially when there is a great combination between the nice looking design and the list of good photography features. The camera tends to sit between a traditional film model and a digital one.

With a pretty large LCD screen which has the thickness of 3.0 inches, the body of the Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 is also large. The size and the weight of this camera is just slightly more than that of the Mini 1, so perhaps not many photographers would notice this tiny difference. The thickness of the separate body is about 1.33 inches, but when you attach the kit lens for shooting full telephotos, the total thickness shall be about 4 inches.

You will not see any flash unit which is built in the camera. The manufacturer performs this to lower the weight of the camera. But you can attach an external flash unit to a hot shoe of the camera. This flash unit has been offered as part of the starter lens kit. However, not many photographers may like to bring an additional accessory with the E-PM2 like this.

One strong point with the E-PM2 is its powerful battery, but this battery is also pretty thick.

You’ll find the menus on the screen pretty typical, as you have to figure out the photography functions with the button on the back panel or another way is to use the popup menus which are tied to the capturing mode you are selecting.

 

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