Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1

Olympus PEN E-PL8 front
Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 front

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Key Specs

Olympus E-PL8
(Full Review)
  • 16MP - Four Thirds Sensor
  • 3" Tilting Display
  • ISO 200 - 25600
  • Sensor based 5-axis Image Stabilization
  • 1920 x 1080 video
  • Micro Four Thirds Mount
  • 357g - 115 x 67 x 38mm
  • Introduced September 2016
  • Older Model is Olympus E-PL7
  • Replacement is Olympus E-PL9
Panasonic ZS1
(Full Review)
  • 10MP - 1/2.5" Sensor
  • 2.7" Fixed Display
  • ISO 100 - 6400
  • Optical Image Stabilization
  • 640 x 480 video
  • 25-300mm (F3.3-4.9) lens
  • 229g - 103 x 60 x 33mm
  • Released May 2009
  • Also Known as Lumix DMC-TZ6
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Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Overview

Below is a extensive review of the Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1, former being a Entry-Level Mirrorless while the other is a Small Sensor Superzoom by rivals Olympus and Panasonic. There exists a considerable gap among the resolutions of the E-PL8 (16MP) and ZS1 (10MP) and the E-PL8 (Four Thirds) and ZS1 (1/2.5") offer different sensor sizing.

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The E-PL8 was revealed 7 years later than the ZS1 and that is a fairly large difference as far as camera technology is concerned. Both the cameras feature different body design with the Olympus E-PL8 being a Rangefinder-style mirrorless camera and the Panasonic ZS1 being a Compact camera.

Before diving right into a complete comparison, here is a concise introduction of how the E-PL8 matches up against the ZS1 with regards to portability, imaging, features and an overall grade.

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Reasons to pick Olympus E-PL8 over the Panasonic ZS1

 E-PL8 ZS1 
ReleasedSeptember 2016May 2009More recent by 90 months
Manually focus Very accurate focus
Display typeTiltingFixed Tilting display
Display size3"2.7"Larger display (+0.3")
Display resolution1037k230kCrisper display (+807k dot)
Touch friendly display Easily navigate

Reasons to pick Panasonic ZS1 over the Olympus E-PL8

 ZS1 E-PL8 

Common features in the Olympus E-PL8 and Panasonic ZS1

 E-PL8 ZS1 
Selfie screen Neither contains selfie screen

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Physical Comparison

For those who are aiming to lug around your camera regularly, you need to factor its weight and dimensions. The Olympus E-PL8 has got outer measurements of 115mm x 67mm x 38mm (4.5" x 2.6" x 1.5") and a weight of 357 grams (0.79 lbs) whilst the Panasonic ZS1 has dimensions of 103mm x 60mm x 33mm (4.1" x 2.4" x 1.3") accompanied by a weight of 229 grams (0.50 lbs).

Look at the Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 in our completely new Camera plus Lens Size Comparison Tool. Camera Size Comparison with Lenses

Do not forget, the weight of an ILC will vary based on the lens you are utilizing during that time. The following is a front view measurements comparison of the E-PL8 compared to the ZS1.

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 size comparison

Considering dimensions and weight, the portability score of the E-PL8 and ZS1 is 86 and 91 respectively.

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 top view buttons comparison

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Sensor Comparison

Sometimes, its hard to picture the gap in sensor measurements purely by seeing specs. The visual below will help give you a much better sense of the sensor sizing in the E-PL8 and ZS1.

All in all, both the cameras feature different resolutions and different sensor measurements. The E-PL8 having a larger sensor is going to make achieving shallower depth of field easier and the Olympus E-PL8 will produce more detail because of its extra 6 Megapixels. Greater resolution will let you crop pics way more aggressively. The younger E-PL8 should have an edge with regard to sensor technology.

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 sensor size comparison

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Screen and ViewFinder

Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Screen and Viewfinder comparison
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Photography Type Scores

Portrait Comparison

Olympus E-PL8 Portrait photography highlights
Panasonic ZS1 Portrait photography highlights
focusing manually
MP count good (16 megapixels)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
provides face detect focusing
supports RAW files
comes with face detection autofocus
focusing manually not possible
no manual control
can't use external flash
MP count low (10 megapixels)
sensor size is very small (1/2.5")
no RAW format
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Street Comparison

Olympus E-PL8 Street photography information
Panasonic ZS1 Street photography information
screen tilts up and down
image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
supports RAW files
boasts touch to focus
very good ISO range (25,600)
built in image stabilization (Optical)
lighter than competition (229g)
screen is fixed
sensor size is very small (1/2.5")
no RAW format
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Sports Comparison

Olympus E-PL8 as a Sports photography camera
Panasonic ZS1 as a Sports photography camera
image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
MP count good (16MP)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
provides tracking focus
does not have phase detect AF
built in image stabilization (Optical)
very slow continuous shooting (3.0 fps)
lack of shutter priority mode
MP count low (10 megapixels)
sensor size is very small (1/2.5")
no phase detect autofocus
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Travel Comparison

Olympus E-PL8 Travel photography details
Panasonic ZS1 Travel photography details
boasts touch to focus
MP count good (16 megapixels)
display isn't selfie friendly
lighter than competition (229g)
flash built-in
quite wide (25mm)
long reach (300mm)
lack of Timelapse mode
MP count low (10MP)
doesn't contain selfie friendly display
slow maximum aperture (f3.3)
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Landscape Comparison

Olympus E-PL8 Landscape photography features
Panasonic ZS1 Landscape photography features
focusing manually
switch lenses (Micro Four Thirds mount)
pretty good screen size (3 inches)
image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
MP count good (16MP)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
very good ISO range (25,600)
supports RAW files
quite wide (25mm)
built in image stabilization (Optical)
focusing manually not possible
fixed lens (fixed lens mount)
slow maximum aperture (f3.3)
screen is somewhat small (2.7 inch)
no manual control
MP count low (10MP)
sensor size is very small (1/2.5")
no RAW format
lack of Timelapse mode
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Vlogging Comparison

Olympus E-PL8 Vlogging advice
Panasonic ZS1 Vlogging advice
has touchscreen
image stabilization (Sensor based 5-axis)
provides face detect focusing
high res video (1920 x 1080 resolution)
display isn't selfie friendly
does not have mic port
quite wide (25mm)
built in image stabilization (Optical)
comes with face detection autofocus
lighter than competition (229g)
slow maximum aperture (f3.3)
doesn't contain selfie friendly display
video res low (640 x 480 pxls)
lack of external microphone jack
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Olympus E-PL8 vs Panasonic ZS1 Specifications

Detailed spec comparison table for Olympus E-PL8 and Panasonic ZS1
 Olympus PEN E-PL8Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1
General Information
Make Olympus Panasonic
Model type Olympus PEN E-PL8 Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1
Also called as - Lumix DMC-TZ6
Type Entry-Level Mirrorless Small Sensor Superzoom
Introduced 2016-09-19 2009-05-14
Body design Rangefinder-style mirrorless Compact
Sensor Information
Chip TruePic VII -
Sensor type CMOS CCD
Sensor size Four Thirds 1/2.5"
Sensor measurements 17.3 x 13mm 5.744 x 4.308mm
Sensor area 224.9mm² 24.7mm²
Sensor resolution 16MP 10MP
Anti alias filter
Aspect ratio 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9 16:9, 4:3 and 3:2
Full resolution 4608 x 3456 3648 x 2736
Max native ISO 25600 6400
Min native ISO 200 100
RAW pictures
Min boosted ISO 100 -
Focus manually
Autofocus touch
Autofocus continuous
Autofocus single
Autofocus tracking
Autofocus selectice
Center weighted autofocus
Multi area autofocus
Live view autofocus
Face detect focus
Contract detect focus
Phase detect focus
Total focus points 81 11
Lens support Micro Four Thirds fixed lens
Lens zoom range - 25-300mm (12.0x)
Largest aperture - f/3.3-4.9
Macro focusing range - 3cm
Amount of lenses 107 -
Focal length multiplier 2.1 6.3
Display type Tilting Fixed Type
Display diagonal 3" 2.7"
Resolution of display 1,037 thousand dot 230 thousand dot
Selfie friendly
Touch capability
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder Electronic (optional) None
Lowest shutter speed 60 seconds 60 seconds
Highest shutter speed 1/4000 seconds 1/2000 seconds
Continuous shooting speed 8.0fps 3.0fps
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manual exposure
Exposure compensation Yes -
Custom white balance
Image stabilization
Built-in flash
Flash distance no built-in flash 5.30 m (Auto ISO)
Flash settings no built-in flash Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye reduction, Slow Sync
Hot shoe
WB bracketing
Multisegment exposure
Average exposure
Spot exposure
Partial exposure
AF area exposure
Center weighted exposure
Video features
Video resolutions 1920 x 1080 (30p), 1280 x 720 (30p), 640 x 480 (30 fps) 848 x 480 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps), 320 x 240 (30 fps)
Max video resolution 1920x1080 640x480
Video file format H.264, Motion JPEG Motion JPEG
Microphone input
Headphone input
Wireless Built-In None
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec) USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
GPS None None
Environmental seal
Water proofing
Dust proofing
Shock proofing
Crush proofing
Freeze proofing
Weight 357 grams (0.79 lbs) 229 grams (0.50 lbs)
Physical dimensions 115 x 67 x 38mm (4.5" x 2.6" x 1.5") 103 x 60 x 33mm (4.1" x 2.4" x 1.3")
DXO scores
DXO All around rating not tested not tested
DXO Color Depth rating not tested not tested
DXO Dynamic range rating not tested not tested
DXO Low light rating not tested not tested
Battery life 350 photographs -
Style of battery Battery Pack -
Self timer Yes (2 or 12 sec, custom) Yes (2 or 10 sec)
Time lapse feature
Type of storage SD/SDHC/SDXC card SD/MMC/SDHC card, Internal
Storage slots One One
Retail cost $500 $0