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Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20

Portability
86
Imaging
47
Features
42
Overall
45
Olympus PEN E-P1 front
 
Pentax Optio VS20 front
Portability
90
Imaging
39
Features
35
Overall
37

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Key Specs

Olympus E-P1
(Full Review)
  • 12MP - Four Thirds Sensor
  • 3" Fixed Display
  • ISO 100 - 6400
  • Sensor based Image Stabilization
  • 1280 x 720 video
  • Micro Four Thirds Mount
  • 355g - 121 x 70 x 36mm
  • Launched July 2009
  • Successor is Olympus E-P2
Pentax VS20
(Full Review)
  • 16MP - 1/2.3" Sensor
  • 3" Fixed Display
  • ISO 100 - 6400
  • Sensor-shift Image Stabilization
  • 1280 x 720 video
  • 28-560mm (F3.1-4.8) lens
  • 235g - 111 x 61 x 38mm
  • Launched January 2012
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Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Overview

Let's look more closely at the Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20, one being a Entry-Level Mirrorless and the other is a Small Sensor Superzoom by competitors Olympus and Pentax. There is a big difference between the image resolutions of the E-P1 (12MP) and VS20 (16MP) and the E-P1 (Four Thirds) and VS20 (1/2.3") provide different sensor dimensions.

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The E-P1 was unveiled 3 years before the VS20 and that is quite a big gap as far as tech is concerned. Both the cameras have different body design with the Olympus E-P1 being a Rangefinder-style mirrorless camera and the Pentax VS20 being a Compact camera.

Before going straight to a comprehensive comparison, here is a concise overview of how the E-P1 scores vs the VS20 in the way of portability, imaging, features and an overall rating.

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Reasons to pick Olympus E-P1 over the Pentax VS20

 E-P1 VS20 

Reasons to pick Pentax VS20 over the Olympus E-P1

 VS20 E-P1 
LaunchedJanuary 2012July 2009Fresher by 30 months
Display resolution460k230kCrisper display (+230k dot)

Common features in the Olympus E-P1 and Pentax VS20

 E-P1 VS20 
Focus manually More precise focus
Display typeFixed Fixed Fixed display
Display dimensions3"3"Equal display sizing
Selfie screen Lack of selfie screen
Touch display Lack of Touch display

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Physical Comparison

If you are going to carry your camera regularly, you're going to have to take into account its weight and measurements. The Olympus E-P1 has external dimensions of 121mm x 70mm x 36mm (4.8" x 2.8" x 1.4") accompanied by a weight of 355 grams (0.78 lbs) while the Pentax VS20 has proportions of 111mm x 61mm x 38mm (4.4" x 2.4" x 1.5") and a weight of 235 grams (0.52 lbs).

See the Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 in the all new Camera and Lens Size Comparison Tool. Camera Size Comparison with Lenses

Remember, the weight of an Interchangeable Lens Camera will differ depending on the lens you have chosen at that moment. Here is a front view proportions comparison of the E-P1 versus the VS20.

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 size comparison

Taking into account size and weight, the portability score of the E-P1 and VS20 is 86 and 90 respectively.

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 top view buttons comparison

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Sensor Comparison

Usually, it is very difficult to picture the contrast between sensor sizing purely by reviewing technical specs. The photograph underneath will provide you a far better sense of the sensor dimensions in the E-P1 and VS20.

As you have seen, each of these cameras provide different megapixel count and different sensor sizing. The E-P1 having a larger sensor is going to make shooting shallow depth of field easier and the Pentax VS20 will offer greater detail having an extra 4 Megapixels. Greater resolution will make it easier to crop photos more aggressively. The older E-P1 is going to be disadvantaged with regard to sensor technology.

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 sensor size comparison

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Screen and ViewFinder

Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Screen and Viewfinder comparison
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Photography Type Scores

Portrait Comparison

Olympus E-P1 Portrait photography features
Pentax VS20 Portrait photography features
60
manual focus
decent sensor size (Four Thirds)
includes face detect autofocus
delivers RAW formats
low MP (12MP)
36
focusing manually
good megapixels (16 megapixels)
lack of manual exposure
external flash not possible
tiny sensor (1/2.3")
no RAW files
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Street Comparison

Olympus E-P1 Street photography advice
Pentax VS20 Street photography advice
74
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
decent sensor size (Four Thirds)
delivers RAW formats
no articulating screen
61
has image stabilization (Sensor-shift)
lighter than competitors (235g)
no articulating screen
tiny sensor (1/2.3")
no RAW files
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Sports Comparison

Sports photography with Olympus E-P1
Sports photography with Pentax VS20
40
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
decent sensor size (Four Thirds)
max fps low (3.0 frames per second)
low MP (12 megapixels)
terrible battery life (300 per charge)
no phase detect autofocus
44
great zoom range (28-560mm 20.0 x zoom)
has image stabilization (Sensor-shift)
good megapixels (16MP)
includes tracking focus
max fps low (1.0 fps)
no shutter priority
tiny sensor (1/2.3")
no phase detect auto focus
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Travel Comparison

Olympus E-P1 Travel photography features
Pentax VS20 Travel photography features
43
missing Time Lapse mode
terrible battery life (300 per charge)
low MP (12MP)
display is not selfie friendly
68
lighter than competitors (235 grams)
good megapixels (16MP)
flash built-in
fairly wide (28mm)
very long reach (560mm)
lack of Time Lapse recording
display is not selfie friendly
slow maximum aperture (f3.1)
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Landscape Comparison

Olympus E-P1 Landscape photography features
Pentax VS20 Landscape photography features
60
manual focus
switch lenses (Micro Four Thirds mount)
nice screen size (3 inch)
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
decent sensor size (Four Thirds)
delivers RAW formats
low MP (12MP)
terrible battery life (300 CIPA)
missing Time Lapse mode
47
focusing manually
fairly wide (28mm)
screen size is good (3")
has image stabilization (Sensor-shift)
good megapixels (16 megapixels)
lens is fixed (fixed lens mount)
slow maximum aperture (f3.1)
lack of manual exposure
tiny sensor (1/2.3")
no RAW files
lack of Time Lapse recording
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Vlogging Comparison

Olympus E-P1 Vlogging info
Pentax VS20 Vlogging info
29
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
includes face detect autofocus
display is not selfie friendly
low quality video (1280 x 720 resolution)
missing mic support
30
fairly wide (28mm)
has image stabilization (Sensor-shift)
lighter than competitors (235g)
slow maximum aperture (f3.1)
display is not selfie friendly
video res low (1280 x 720 resolution)
lack of mic support
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Olympus E-P1 vs Pentax VS20 Specifications

Detailed spec comparison table for Olympus E-P1 and Pentax VS20
 Olympus PEN E-P1Pentax Optio VS20
General Information
Brand Olympus Pentax
Model type Olympus PEN E-P1 Pentax Optio VS20
Class Entry-Level Mirrorless Small Sensor Superzoom
Launched 2009-07-29 2012-01-25
Physical type Rangefinder-style mirrorless Compact
Sensor Information
Processor TruePic V -
Sensor type CMOS CCD
Sensor size Four Thirds 1/2.3"
Sensor dimensions 17.3 x 13mm 6.08 x 4.56mm
Sensor area 224.9mm² 27.7mm²
Sensor resolution 12MP 16MP
Anti alias filter
Aspect ratio 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 1:1, 4:3 and 16:9
Highest Possible resolution 4032 x 3024 4608 x 3456
Maximum native ISO 6400 6400
Lowest native ISO 100 100
RAW photos
Autofocusing
Focus manually
Touch focus
Autofocus continuous
Single autofocus
Tracking autofocus
Autofocus selectice
Autofocus center weighted
Multi area autofocus
Live view autofocus
Face detect focus
Contract detect focus
Phase detect focus
Total focus points 11 3
Lens
Lens mount type Micro Four Thirds fixed lens
Lens zoom range - 28-560mm (20.0x)
Highest aperture - f/3.1-4.8
Macro focusing distance - 3cm
Available lenses 107 -
Crop factor 2.1 5.9
Screen
Display type Fixed Type Fixed Type
Display sizing 3 inches 3 inches
Display resolution 230k dots 460k dots
Selfie friendly
Liveview
Touch display
Display technology HyperCrystal LCD with AR(Anti-Reflective) coating TFT color LCD with Anti-reflective coating
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder None None
Features
Minimum shutter speed 60 seconds 4 seconds
Fastest shutter speed 1/4000 seconds 1/2500 seconds
Continuous shutter rate 3.0 frames per second 1.0 frames per second
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation Yes -
Change white balance
Image stabilization
Inbuilt flash
Flash distance no built-in flash 2.80 m
Flash options Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Fill-in, Slow Sync, Manual (3 levels) Auto, On, Off, Red-eye, Soft
External flash
Auto exposure bracketing
WB bracketing
Fastest flash synchronize 1/180 seconds -
Exposure
Multisegment exposure
Average exposure
Spot exposure
Partial exposure
AF area exposure
Center weighted exposure
Video features
Video resolutions 1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps) 1280 x 720 (30, 15 fps), 640 x 480 (30, 15 fps), 320 x 240 (30, 15 fps)
Maximum video resolution 1280x720 1280x720
Video file format Motion JPEG Motion JPEG
Mic support
Headphone support
Connectivity
Wireless None Eye-Fi Connected
Bluetooth
NFC
HDMI
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec) USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
GPS None None
Physical
Environment sealing
Water proofing
Dust proofing
Shock proofing
Crush proofing
Freeze proofing
Weight 355g (0.78 pounds) 235g (0.52 pounds)
Physical dimensions 121 x 70 x 36mm (4.8" x 2.8" x 1.4") 111 x 61 x 38mm (4.4" x 2.4" x 1.5")
DXO scores
DXO Overall rating 55 not tested
DXO Color Depth rating 21.4 not tested
DXO Dynamic range rating 10.4 not tested
DXO Low light rating 536 not tested
Other
Battery life 300 photographs -
Battery style Battery Pack -
Battery ID BLS-1 D-LI122
Self timer Yes (2 or 12 sec) Yes (2 or 10 sec)
Time lapse shooting
Type of storage SD/SDHC card SD/SDHC/SDXC, Internal
Card slots 1 1
Retail price $182 $106