Face-Off: Pen E-PL2 vs NEX-F3 vs OM-D E-M5 vs Lumix GX1 vs Lumix GF5 vs Lumix GH3 vs X-Pro1

Olympus OM-D E-M5
Olympus OM-D E-M5
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Panasonic Lumix GF5
Panasonic Lumix GF5
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Fujifilm X-Pro1
Fujifilm X-Pro1
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Sony NEX-F3
Sony NEX-F3
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Panasonic Lumix GX1
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Panasonic Lumix GH3
 
Olympus Pen E-PL2 Sony NEX-F3 Olympus OM-D E-M5 Panasonic Lumix GX1 Panasonic Lumix GF5 Panasonic Lumix GH3 Fujifilm X-Pro1
Photo
Olympus Pen E-PL2
Overview - Full review
Sony NEX-F3
Overview - Full review
Olympus OM-D E-M5
Overview - Full review
Panasonic Lumix GX1
Overview - Full review
Panasonic Lumix GF5
Overview - Full review
Panasonic Lumix GH3
Overview - Full review
Fujifilm X-Pro1
Overview - Full review
Price
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Slrhut 529.95  
Amazon 534.98  
Slrhut 569.95  
Amazon 589.00  
Slrhut 649.95  
Amazon 749.00  
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Slrhut 340.00  
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Amazon 525.00  
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Very 999.00  
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Overall Scene
Olympus Pen E-PL2
Sony NEX-F3
Olympus OM-D E-M5
Panasonic Lumix GX1
Panasonic Lumix GF5
Panasonic Lumix GH3
Fujifilm X-Pro1
Score
4/5
4/5
5/5
4/5
4/5
5/5
4/5
Handling
4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 5/5 4/5
Responsiveness
4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 3/5
Picture Quality
4/5 5/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 5/5
Video
3/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 5/5 4/5
User Score
5/5 (9)
5/5 (3)
4/5 (1)
4/5 (4)
4/5 (3)
Specifications
Specifications
SensorCMOS 12 Mpx, 4/3", 5 Mpx/cm
Lens 3x 28 -84 mm f/3.5 -5.6
StabilisationMechanical
ViewfinderN.A.
Screen6.7 cm, not TN, 460000 dots, 4:3,Not touch-sensitive
Sensitivity (ISO range)100 - 6400 ISO
Video mode1280 x 720 pixels,30 fps, Mono
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. / BLS-5
Waterproofno, 0 m
Shock resistantno, 0 m
Dimensions/Weight73 x 115 x 42 mm / 317 g
Specifications
SensorCMOS 16 Mpx, APS-C (x1,5), 4.3 Mpx/cm
Lens N.A. 18 -55 mm f/3.5 -5.6
StabilisationDepends on lens
ViewfinderN.A.
Screen7.5 mm, not TN, 921600 dots, 16:9,Not touch-sensitive
Sensitivity (ISO range)200 - 16000 ISO
Video mode1920 x 1080 pixels,25 fps, Stereo
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. / NP-FW50 (7.3 Wh)
Waterproofno, N.A.
Shock resistantno, N.A.
Dimensions/Weight70 x 124 x 43 mm / 303 g
Specifications
SensorCMOS 16 Mpx, 4/3", 7 Mpx/cm
Lens N.A. 12 -50 mm f/3.5 -6.3
StabilisationMechanical
ViewfinderElectronic
Screen7.6 cm, Oled, 610000 dots, 4:3,Monopoint
Sensitivity (ISO range)200 - 25600 ISO
Video mode1920 x 1080 pixels,30 fps, Stereo
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. /
Waterproofno, N.A.
Shock resistantno, N.A.
Dimensions/Weight90 x 121 x 42 mm / 425 g
Specifications
SensorCMOS 16 Mpx, 4/3", 7 Mpx/cm
Lens N.A. 14 -42 mm f/3.5 -5.6
StabilisationDepends on lens
ViewfinderN.A.
Screen7.5 cm, not TN, 460000 dots, 3:2,Monopoint
Sensitivity (ISO range)160 - 12800 ISO
Video mode1920 x 1080 pixels,25 fps, Stereo
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. / Li-ion
Waterproofno, N.A.
Shock resistantno, N.A.
Dimensions/Weight x x /
Specifications
SensorCMOS 12 Mpx, 4/3", 10.6 Mpx/cm
Lens N.A. 14 -42 mm f/3.5 -5.6
StabilisationOptical
ViewfinderN.A.
Screen7.5 mm, not TN, 920 000 dots, 3:2,Monopoint
Sensitivity (ISO range)160 - 6400 ISO
Video mode1920 x 1080 pixels,60i fps, Stereo
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. / BLE9E (6.8 Wh)
Waterproofno, N.A.
Shock resistantno, N.A.
Dimensions/Weight68 x 114 x 38 mm / nc g
Specifications
SensorCMOS 16 Mpx, 4/3", 7.11 Mpx/cm
Lens N.A. 14 -140 mm f/4 -5.8
StabilisationDepends on lens
ViewfinderElectronic
Screen7.62 cm, Oled, 614000 dots, 4:3,Monopoint
Sensitivity (ISO range)200 - 12800 ISO
Video mode1920 x 1080 pixels,50 fps, Stereo
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. / 7.2v (14Wh)
Waterproofno, N.A.
Shock resistantno, N.A.
Dimensions/Weight94 x 143 x 74 mm / 546 g
Specifications
SensorCMOS 16 Mpx, APS-C (x1,5), 4.3 Mpx/cm
Lens N.A. 18 -N.A. mm f/2 -N.A.
Stabilisationno
ViewfinderHybrid
Screen7.6 cm, not TN, 1230000 dots, 4:3,Not touch-sensitive
Sensitivity (ISO range)200 - 6400 ISO
Video mode1920 x 1080 pixels,24 fps, Stereo
Internal memoryN.A.
External memory
Connections
Power sourceN.A. N.A. / NP-W126 (8.7 Wh)
Waterproofno, N.A.
Shock resistantno, N.A.
Dimensions/Weight83 x 147 x 43 mm / 435 g
Conclusion
The Olympus E-PL2 is a very good update of the E-PL1. It's better built and has a few nice, if predictable, new features (click-round wheel, screen, image processing etc.). As it stands, in early 2011, this is clearly the most attractive Pen camera on the market, and not just for its price!
The Sony NEX-F3 gets a built-in flash in return for a bulkier body. Elsewhere, changes are few and far between, and the NEX-F3 is as simple, effective and pleasant-to-use as the NEX-C3. With its more reasonable price tag, it makes an excellent alternative to the NEX-5N.
The Olympus OM-D E-M5 is the best high-end micro four-thirds camera in the current Olympus range. It's fast, it takes great-quality pictures, it has a good EVF, a handy tilt LCD and an effective built-in stabilisation system. In fact, it's the best Olympus camera on the market right now.
The Panasonic Lumix GX1 is an excellent successor to the GF1, bringing a host of great new features from Panasonic's bulkier cameras (G3) and consumer models alike (GF3). This pleasant and effective hybrid compact is ideal for anyone looking for fast access to all kinds of settings and manual controls.
The GF5 is a nice update of Panasonic's GF3. Handling has improved thanks to the reworked interface, and picture quality has been enhanced at high-sensitivity settings. All in all, the Lumix GF5 is a pleasant and consistent camera to use. There are better cameras out there, but they'll no doubt be bulkier and more expensive.
The Panasonic Lumix GH3 is a comprehensive, well-rounded and well-designed camera. With a new sensor and new electronics, it delivers excellent image quality in both photo and video modes. It's also nice and responsive in most situations. It's a success—there's no doubt about it.
The Fuji X-Pro1 is a very nice camera that takes excellent-quality pictures—better than any other APS sensor camera out there, in fact. However, it's let down by its rather strange handling and its unreliable autofocus in low light. In the end, it's not as pleasant to use as the Sony NEX-7 or Olympus OM-D E-M5 (its key rivals), and we're not so sure its top-notch picture quality—although far superior—will be enough to make up for that.
Pros

+

Nice build and finish, comfortable and pleasant to handle

+

Simplified user interface

+

General responsiveness: start-up, saving photos, autofocus etc.

+

Picture quality up to 800 ISO or even 1600 ISO

+

Incredibly compact zoom lens supplied

+

Good grip

+

Built-in flash (finally!)

+

Customisable interface

+

Sharp, pleasant, vertical-tilt screen (up to 180° upwards)

+

Very good picture quality up to 3200 ISO

+

Weatherproof finish (and weatherproof 12-50 mm lens)

+

Great retro design

+

Picture quality up to 3200 ISO

+

Two settings dials

+

Effective stabilisation system

+

Sharp, smooth EVF

+

Tilt LCD touchscreen

+

Quiet shutter release

+

Sturdy metal body

+

Customisable interface, loads of controls and settings

+

Very good picture quality (sharpness and noise control up to 1600 ISO)

+

Full HD video with stereo sound

+

Compact zoom lens with electronic controls (good for smooth videos)

+

Design, handling, ease of use

+

Customisable interface (Quick menu, etc.)

+

Picture quality up to 3200 ISO

+

Nice touchscreen, choice between using touch-controls and physical controls

+

Burst mode: 6 fps

+

Digital noise handled very well

+

Wi-Fi (connection to a mobile phone, geo-tagging)

+

Excellent-quality video mode

+

Loads of customisable controls

+

Can be used silently

+

All-weather finish

+

Swivel touchscreen

+

Precise EVF

+

Incredibly impressive CMOS sensor: excellent image quality up to 6400 ISO, superb sharpness with good lenses

+

Good build quality, good grip

+

Hybrid viewfinder: nice to use in optical and electronic modes

+

Practical to use in manual exposure mode

Cons

-

Only one setting can be adjusted at once in Auto mode!

-

Video mode lags behind current standards (mono sound, format, definition)

-

Interminable and sometimes unclear menus

-

From 3200 ISO, Sony's NEX cameras do much better

-

What happened to the 100 ISO setting?

-

Battery life could be better

-

Noisy shutter release (no discreet snapping here!)

-

Variable quality 18-55 mm kit lens / Limited choice of lenses (unless you use an adapter ring)

-

Bulkier than previous NEX cameras

-

No built-in flash (separate accessory supplied)

-

Battery life could be better

-

Menus can be confusing

-

Handling - room for improvement

-

No headphones or mic sockets for video

-

3D AF tracking isn't always reliable

-

No GPS, no Wi-Fi

-

Noisy shutter

-

No manual video modes or mic socket

-

Electronic zoom controls (slight lag when changing focal length)

-

No way of hooking up an external flash or microphone

-

No swivel or tilt screen

-

No multi-aspect ratio sensor

-

EVF is rather imposing

-

Some ghosting when lining up shots in low light

-

No focus peaking in video mode

-

ISO limited to 3200 ISO in Auto mode

-

Only one memory card slot

-

Shutter speed (still images) just 1/4000 of a second

-

Finish could be better in places (buttons made from low-grade plastic)

-

Controls and handling can sometimes be strange (clickable thumb-wheel with practically no uses, no lock on exposure correction dial)

-

Autofocus is inconsistent, especially in low light

-

Low battery life, no battery guide (to help you get it in the right way round)