Olympus E-P1

 
Olympus PEN E-P1 front
 
  • 12MP - Four Thirds Sensor
  • 3" Fixed Screen
  • ISO 100 - 6400
  • Sensor based Image Stabilization
  • 1280 x 720 video
  • Micro Four Thirds Mount
  • 355g - 121 x 70 x 36mm
  • Revealed July 2009
  • New Model is Olympus E-P2
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
  • Size Comparison
Portability
86
Imaging
48
Features
42
Overall
45

Olympus E-P1 overview

Olympus E-P1 is Olympus's Entry-Level Mirrorless digital camera first released on July of 2009. It comes with a 12 MegaPixel, CMOS Four Thirds sized sensor and has a maximum resolution of 4032 x 3024.

Olympus launched the updated Olympus E-P2 (Read Full Comparison) in an effort to improve this model.

The E-P1 comes in at #109 out of 111 in Entry-Level Mirrorless cameras & all around #523 out of 1428 for cameras in our list. Remember to check out our Smart camera search to get camera listings based on your customized factors.

Last day to get your files as Canon Irisa shuts down

Here is a graph of different criteria used in the scoring system.

Olympus E-P1 history

The Olympus E-P1 is part of a family of cameras. You can read the detailed range underneath.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Olympus-OM-D-E-M10-IV front thumbnailOlympus E-M10 IV
E-P1 vs E-M10 IV
20MPFour Thirds8.7 fps2020
Olympus-PEN-E-PL9 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL9
E-P1 vs E-PL9
16MPFour Thirds8.6 fps2018
Control Profoto B10 & B10 Plus with your Android Phone
Olympus-OM-D-E-M10-Mark-III front thumbnailOlympus E-M10 III
E-P1 vs E-M10 III
16MPFour Thirds8.6 fps2017
Olympus-PEN-E-PL8 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL8
E-P1 vs E-PL8
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2016
Olympus-OM-D-E-M10-II front thumbnailOlympus E-M10 II
E-P1 vs E-M10 II
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2015
Olympus-PEN-E-PL7 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL7
E-P1 vs E-PL7
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2014
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Olympus-PEN-E-PL6 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL6
E-P1 vs E-PL6
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2014
Olympus-OM-D-E-M10 front thumbnailOlympus E-M10
E-P1 vs E-M10
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2014
Olympus-PEN-E-P5 front thumbnailOlympus E-P5
E-P1 vs E-P5
16MPFour Thirds9.0 fps2013
Olympus-PEN-E-PM2 front thumbnailOlympus E-PM2
E-P1 vs E-PM2
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2013
Olympus-PEN-E-PL5 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL5
E-P1 vs E-PL5
16MPFour Thirds8.0 fps2012
Coronavirus is affecting the sensor business
Olympus-PEN-E-PM1 front thumbnailOlympus E-PM1
E-P1 vs E-PM1
12MPFour Thirds6.0 fps2011
Olympus-PEN-E-PL3 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL3
E-P1 vs E-PL3
12MPFour Thirds6.0 fps2011
Olympus-PEN-E-P3 front thumbnailOlympus E-P3
E-P1 vs E-P3
12MPFour Thirds3.0 fps2011
Olympus-PEN-E-PL2 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL2
E-P1 vs E-PL2
12MPFour Thirds3.0 fps2011
Olympus-PEN-E-PL1s front thumbnailOlympus E-PL1s
E-P1 vs E-PL1s
12MPFour Thirds3.0 fps2010
Olympus-PEN-E-PL1 front thumbnailOlympus E-PL1
E-P1 vs E-PL1
12MPFour Thirds3.0 fps2010
Olympus-PEN-E-P2 front thumbnailOlympus E-P2
E-P1 vs E-P2
12MPFour Thirds3.0 fps2010
Olympus-PEN-E-P1 front thumbnailOlympus E-P112MPFour Thirds3.0 fps2009
Handle those 8K RED files like a boss

Olympus E-P1 Pros and Cons

Below is a list of benefits and drawbacks of the Olympus E-P1 based on features which are typically viewed as useful in a digital camera.

above average min ISO (100)
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
has HDMI socket
has manual focus
includes face detect autofocus
saves RAW files
screen is a decent size (3 inch)
sensor size is decent (Four Thirds)
swap lenses (Micro Four Thirds mount)
doesn't posses selfie friendly screen
lack of headphone socket
lack of microphone socket
lack of Timelapse recording
lacks phase detect autofocus
low res video (1280 x 720 resolution)
max fps very slow (3.0 frames/s)
no articulating screen
not so great battery (300 per charge)
pixelated screen (230 thousand dots)
sensor resolution low (12MP)
Photographer fined '$200,000' for failing to deliver photos

Olympus E-P1 Sensor specifications

The Olympus E-P1 houses the TruePic V chip. The size of the sensor in the Olympus E-P1 is 17.3mm x 13mm (Four Thirds). The 225 mm² sensor has the ability to resolve 4032 x 3024 pixels and aspect ratios of 1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9. The camera has Image Stabilization (Sensor based). In body stabilization is preferable than digital stabilization as the latter can produce cropping.

Instagram's $20 billion Ad success

The CMOS sensor has 12MP and gives a standard ISO range of 100 - 6400. RAW files are saved which means that you have wider margin for error.

The image underneath illustrates the E-P1's sensor dimensions when compared to other popular sizes. The E-P1 sensor has a crop factor of 2.1 and is displayed in green.

Olympus PEN E-P1 sensor size 400 Megapixel mode coming to Fujifilm GFX 100

To get an idea of various aspect ratios, you can refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Olympus E-P1 dimensions

Olympus E-P1 has a weight of 0.78 pounds (355 grams / 12.52 ounces) & has external size of 121mm x 70mm x 36mm (4.8" x 2.8" x 1.4"). The weight of normal Entry-Level Mirrorless camera is 325 grams so the Olympus E-P1 is on par compared to various competitors.

World's smallest camera makes it into Guinness Book of Records

Here is a image of the Olympus E-P1 with a softdrink to help you get a feel for its scale.

Olympus PEN E-P1 dimensions scale

The top view just below will show the button layout on the E-P1.

Olympus PEN E-P1 topview buttons dials

Olympus E-P1 Lens specifications

The E-P1 fits the Micro Four Thirds mount and has 151 lenses to choose from. Below is some of the lenses we have in our database which will fit the E-P1.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Olympus-M.Zuiko-Digital-ED-12-45mm-F4-Pro lensOlympus M.Zuiko Digital ED 12-45mm F4 Pro24-90mmf/4254g
Samyang-12mm-f2.0-NCS-CS-Micro-Four-Thirds lensSamyang 12mm f2.0 NCS CS12mmf/2.0 260g
Google will print your 'Best' photos for $8 a month
Voigtlander-Nokton-25mm-F0.95-Micro-Four-Thirds lensVoigtlander Nokton 25mm F0.9525mmf/0.95 410g
Kamlan-28mm-F1.4-Micro-Four-Thirds lensKamlan 28mm F1.428mmf/1.4384g
Panasonic-Leica-DG-Macro-Elmarit-45mm-F2.8-ASPH-OIS lensPanasonic Leica DG Macro-Elmarit 45mm F2.8 ASPH OIS45mmf/2.8 225g
Panasonic-Leica-D-Summilux-Asph-25mm-F1.4 lensPanasonic Leica D Summilux Asph 25mm F1.425mmf/1.4 510g
Instagram's $20 billion Ad success
Olympus-M.Zuiko-ED-75-300mm-f4.8-6.7-II lensOlympus M.Zuiko ED 75-300mm f4.8-6.7 II75-300mmf/4.8-6.7 423g
Last day to get your files as Canon Irisa shuts down

Olympus E-P1 Connectivity

The E-P1 has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • HDMI Yes

Cameras which include NFC and Bluetooth support are able to be used wirelessly through smartphones. You can easily transfer files and sometimes alter settings without the hassle of connecting straight to the camera.

Several applications even enable a Liveview and click the shutter in case you aren't close to the camera. If the camera has a HDMI port, it can easily be hooked up to an external screen. The majority of cameras enable you to charge the battery using the USB port.

Control Profoto B10 & B10 Plus with your Android Phone

Olympus E-P1 Video specifications

The maximum video resolution in the Olympus E-P1 is 1280 x 720 and you can shoot in Motion JPEG file format. 720p is awful for today's standards. You should target at least 1080p resolution for video recording. The camera doesn't feature a microphone and headphone port which means you get little control over the audio. It is probably a better idea to look at a different model in case you require decent audio for your videos.

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Olympus E-P1 Weather Sealing

There is no weather proofing for the Olympus E-P1 so you need to be cautious in wet or dusty situations.

Olympus E-P1 Screen and Viewfinder

The Olympus E-P1 comes with a 3 inch fixed display screen supporting a resolution of 230 thousand dots.

Please be aware that the display has no touch support.

Olympus PEN E-P1 screen and viewfinder Coronavirus is affecting the sensor business

The View Finder specs for Olympus E-P1 are as follows:

  • ViewFinder None

For sunny outdoor situations which make the camera screens washed out and hard to see, viewfinders can be very valuable.

Olympus E-P1 Shutter specifications

Olympus E-P1 has the ability to shoot continuously at 3.0 frames/s. The max shutter speed is 1/4000s.

Handle those 8K RED files like a boss

Olympus E-P1 Flash and Hot shoe specifications

Olympus E-P1 has external flash ability but is lacking built-in flash. The max flash sync is 1/180s.

Olympus E-P1 Autofocus specifications

Olympus E-P1 has just Contrast Detect AF & is missing Phase Detect AF. Phase Detection autofocusing is more quicker & precise when compared to Contrast Detect autofocusing. The camera comes with Face detection which can be helpful for portraits.

The Sensor comes with 11 focus points to pick from. Olympus E-P1 includes manual focus when needed during low light scenarios or you want to have more precise control on focus.

Photographer fined '$200,000' for failing to deliver photos

Olympus E-P1 Battery life

The battery (BLS-1) for the Olympus E-P1 is fashioned to last for 300 clicks with respect to the CIPA measurements which is lesser when compared to it's rivals. The general Entry-Level Mirrorless camera battery life is 338. Samsung NX mini has the highest possible (650) battery life within this group of cameras.

Listed below is a listing of Entry-Level Mirrorless cameras having the best battery life:

Olympus E-P1 for different categories of photography

The following diagram gives a summation of the Olympus E-P1 for different categories of photography. To learn more, browse to the specific section underneath.

Olympus E-P1 Portrait photography advice

The Olympus E-P1 has a rating of 60 which is reasonable, meaning that it is reasonably acceptable to use for portrait photos. Photographing portraits leans heavily to sensor resolution, support for RAW photos in addition to the flexibility to use off-camera flash.

World's smallest camera makes it into Guinness Book of Records
focusing manually
decent sensor size (Four Thirds)
has face detect focus
exports RAW formats
megapixel count low (12MP)

Olympus E-P1 Street photography factors

Having a above average rating of 74, the Olympus E-P1 is a very decent option for street photography. A very good street photography camera gives a fine balance of picture quality plus portability.

Google will print your 'Best' photos for $8 a month
image stabilization (Sensor based)
nice sensor size (Four Thirds)
delivers RAW formats
no articulating screen

Olympus E-P1 Sports photography factors

A awful sports photography points total of 40 means the Olympus E-P1 is just not appropriate for taking pictures of sports. A camera needs to have great autofocus and fast continuous shooting for sports photography.

Instagram's $20 billion Ad success
image stabilization (Sensor based)
good sensor size (Four Thirds)
continuous shooting slow (3.0 frames/s)
low resolution (12 megapixels)
terrible battery (300 per charge)
lack of phase detect AF

Olympus E-P1 Travel photography highlights

Portability is extremely critical in selecting a travel camera. Over-all, the Olympus E-P1 gets a awful 44 for a travel camera which makes it just not appropriate to take with you on your trips.

Last day to get your files as Canon Irisa shuts down
lack of Time Lapse recording
not so great battery (300 shots)
megapixel count low (12 megapixels)
screen is not selfie friendly

Olympus E-P1 Landscape photography advice

For anybody planning to choose a digital camera for landscape pictures, the most essential factor is going to be image quality. The Olympus E-P1 with it's nice grade of 61 for a landscape camera is a good pick in the current marketplace.

Control Profoto B10 & B10 Plus with your Android Phone
focusing manually
change lenses (Micro Four Thirds mount)
decent sized screen (3 inches)
has image stabilization (Sensor based)
nice sensor size (Four Thirds)
exports RAW formats
low megapixels (12 megapixels)
bad battery power (300 per charge)
missing Timelapse function

Olympus E-P1 Vlogging advice

A camera for vlogging should have a moving display, mic port and preferably IBIS. Considering everything, the Olympus E-P1 is just not appropriate for vlogging as it receives a awful rating of 30.

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has image stabilization (Sensor based)
comes with face detection autofocus
screen isn't selfie friendly
low res video (1280 x 720 pxls)
no external mic port

Olympus E-P1 Alternatives

If you are interested in alternatives to the E-P1, here is a selection of the top scored cameras which fall into the class of Entry-Level Mirrorless.

The graph listed below offers you an overview of the E-P1 vs it's highest scored rivals shown earlier.

There are more cameras you might view as alternate options. To go through a detailed comparison, simply click on the "compare" link.

Coronavirus is affecting the sensor business

Specifications

General Information
Manufacturer
Olympus
Model
Olympus PEN E-P1
Type
Entry-Level Mirrorless
Revealed
2009-07-29
Physical type
Rangefinder-style mirrorless
Sensor Information
Sensor type
CMOS
Processor
TruePic V
Sensor size
Four Thirds
Sensor measurements
17.3 x 13mm
Sensor surface area
224.9mm²
Sensor resolution
12 megapixel
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio
1:1, 4:3, 3:2 and 16:9
Maximum resolution
4032 x 3024
RAW files
Maximum native ISO
6400
Minimum native ISO
100
Autofocusing
Focus manually
Autofocus touch
Continuous autofocus
Autofocus single
Autofocus tracking
Autofocus selectice
Center weighted autofocus
Autofocus multi area
Live view autofocus
Face detection autofocus
Contract detection autofocus
Phase detection autofocus
Number of focus points
11
Lens
Lens mounting type
Micro Four Thirds
Available lenses
107
Focal length multiplier
2.1
Screen
Screen type
Fixed Type
Screen sizing
3 inch
Resolution of screen
230 thousand dots
Selfie friendly
Liveview
Touch display
Screen tech
HyperCrystal LCD with AR(Anti-Reflective) coating
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder
None
DXO scores
DXO All around score
55
DXO Color Depth score
21.4
DXO Dynamic range score
10.4
DXO Low light score
536
Features
Slowest shutter speed
60 seconds
Maximum shutter speed
1/4000 seconds
Continuous shooting rate
3.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Manually set exposure
Exposure compensation
Yes
Set white balance
Image stabilization
Inbuilt flash
Flash range
no built-in flash
Flash settings
Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Fill-in, Slow Sync, Manual (3 levels)
External flash
AE bracketing
WB bracketing
Maximum 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)
Maximum video resolution
1280x720
Video format
Motion JPEG
Microphone port
Headphone port
Connectivity
Wireless
None
Bluetooth
NFC
HDMI
USB
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
GPS
None
Physical
Environmental sealing
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
Weight
355 gr (0.78 lbs)
Physical dimensions
121 x 70 x 36mm (4.8" x 2.8" x 1.4")
Other
Battery life
300 pictures
Battery type
Battery Pack
Battery model
BLS-1
Self timer
Yes (2 or 12 sec)
Time lapse recording
Type of storage
SD/SDHC card
Card slots
Single
Launch cost
$182