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OLYMPUS 262855 12.3 Megapixel E-PL1 Pen Camera (Black camera body)

by Olympus
52 customer reviews
| 6 answered questions

List Price: $649.99
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  • 12.3-megapixel interchangeable lens digital camera; Micro Four Thirds format
  • Body only; lenses sold separately
  • 2.7-inch HyperCrystal LCD with Live View function; Continuous Autofocus (C-AF) tracking system
  • Capture HD video with high-quality audio; new "Direct Button" for easy recording
  • New Live Guide interface simplifies great photography; capture images to SD/SDHC cards (not included)
4 new from $279.99 7 used from $79.00 2 refurbished from $118.98

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$279.99 & FREE Shipping Only 9 left in stock. Ships from and sold by Amazing Closeout.

Frequently Bought Together

  • OLYMPUS 262855 12.3 Megapixel E-PL1 Pen Camera (Black camera body)
  • +
  • Fotodiox Lens Mount Adapter, Canon FD/FL Lens to Micro 4/3 Olympus PEN and Panasonic Lumix Cameras
Total price: $301.94
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Technical Details

Product Description

Product Description

OLYMPUS 262855 12.3 Megapixel E-PL1 Pen Camera (Black camera body)

From the Manufacturer

The new Olympus PEN E-PL1 is truly greater than the sum of its parts, with a surprisingly small camera body packed with technology normally found in bigger, bulkier and heavier professional Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) cameras and High-Definition (HD) camcorders. This third-generation PEN is built for shutterbugs who always wanted better pictures and considered a DSLR, but were intimidated by the bulky size and complex interface. The new camera's simple design and easy interface enable photographers to easily create amazing images never dreamt possible.

The E-PL1 equals an affordable and powerfully simple all-in-one package that travels with you to capture life in the high quality that your memories deserve.

Olympus PEN E-PL1 highlights
Easily Pen Your Story with a Brand-New PEN

This third generation of the Olympus PEN series combines powerful features in an easy-to-use package that will make capturing your life more fun. The new direct record button makes taking videos easier than ever and the new Live Guide functionality makes it simple to learn photography techniques without requiring the skills of a pro shooter.

New Direct Button for HD Movies
Recording HD movies with the E-PL1 is simple, thanks to an easy-to-reach red "direct button" (red record button) on the back of the camera body. If you're about to snap a photo and you realize a video would capture the spirit of the scene even better, simply press the record button and instantly you're capturing videos! Easily toggle back and forth between capturing stills and videos by using your index finger to press the shutter button or your thumb to press the red record button. Having the ability to shoot still images and videos opens up a world of imaging possibilities.

New Live Guide Sets the Scene Before You Shoot
The E-PL1's new Live Guide interface simplifies great photography and gets the results you desire at the touch of a button. Want more vivid or muted color in your shot? Want warmer or cooler color? Want a brighter or darker subject, or a sharper or softer background? Or maybe you want to capture the fast-moving action of your subject with a little artistic blur, or perhaps freeze the action? Simply select Live Guide and press the up and down arrows on the back of the camera to slide through numerous photographic effects. Make adjustments and watch the LCD as the effects are made live before the image is captured! Don't worry about learning technical things like f-stops, shutter speed and white balance; jump right in by composing, adjusting exposure and more before the shot is taken.

Seeing the results before snapping the image ensures you are getting the shots you want, and it will change the way you photograph. Shooting Tips are also included with Live Guide, so you can leave the manual at home.

Automate Everything
Live Guide is just the start of automated technologies on the E-PL1 designed to free you up to focus on your subjects instead of focusing on your camera's settings.
    Olympus PEN E-PL1 highlights
    Intelligent Auto Mode identifies the ideal setting
  • 19 Scene-Select Modes: From portraits to sunset shots, the E-PL1 is equipped with 19 Scene-Select modes for effortless picture taking, including Fireworks, Sunset, Children, Macro and Panorama, to name a few. Capturing beautiful portraits is easy with the ePortrait Mode that enables you to smooth your subject's complexion.
  • Intelligent Auto (iAuto) Mode: When you don't want to use the scene-select modes, the iAuto mode automatically identifies what you're shooting and adjusts settings for you to capture the best result depending on the situation.
  • Face Detection: Reduce the chance of blurred subjects in images by recognizing up to eight faces, tracking them within the image area, and automatically focusing and optimizing exposure for sharp portraits.
  • In-Camera Panorama: Capture three images and stitch them together to create one amazing, seamless panoramic picture. Or use the included OLYMPUS [ib] software to stitch up to 10 images together for the ultimate panorama.
  • iEnhance: With this mode the warm yellow and orange colors of a sunset are heightened to a dramatically lifelike color that's truer to what you see with the naked eye. iEnhance can be used in any mode, and automatically engages when using iAuto to enrich color in any subject.
  • Share: Just connect the camera to an HDTV with an optional HDMI cable and use your TV remote to control playback functions and navigate the camera's menus from the comfort of your personal front-row seat. The E-PL1 records to SDHC (Class 6 recommended) media cards that can be plugged directly into many devices and accommodate large files, including videos.
Olympus PEN E-PL1 highlights
New Powerfully Simple Pop-Up Flash
The E-PL1 is the first camera in the Olympus PEN series with a built-in pop-up flash that makes it easy to illuminate low-light subjects, reduce red-eye and fill in dark areas. The camera is also compatible with a range of optional external flashes, including the Olympus FL-36R and FL-50R, which can be controlled wirelessly by the E-PL1 so you can dynamically control lighting as your photography skills grow.

Pro-Quality Images

How do professional photographers capture the stunning images you see in the pages of glossy magazines and coffee-table books? Talent matters, of course, but you also need the right equipment. Rest assured that the E-PL1 has everything you need to produce vibrant, professional-quality images: a large image sensor, in-body Image Stabilization, Imager Autofocus, the proven Olympus Dust Reduction System and the TruePic V Image Processor.

Olympus PEN E-PL1 highlights
Standard point-and-shoot sensor vs. the PEN E-PL1 sensor

Big Sensor, Not a Big Body
At the heart of the E-PL1 is a large-size image sensor that's the same sensor as the one inside the Olympus E-30 and E-620 DSLR models. The only difference between this sensor and what the pros use is that this big sensor is inside the much smaller body of the E-PL1. This high-performance 12.3-megapixel Live MOS image sensor (eight times larger than the average point-and-shoot camera sensor) delivers excellent dynamic range, accurate color fidelity, and a state-of-the-art amplifier circuit to reduce noise and capture fine image details in both highlight and shadow areas.

Stabilize All of Your Lenses
Instead of selling more expensive lenses that have image stabilization inside them, Olympus takes a different approach by having image stabilization built right into the body of the E-PL1. This means that any lens (Micro Four Thirds, Four Thirds and any third-party lens) attached to the E-PL1 will deliver blur-free images thanks to three modes of In-body Image Stabilization that automatically compensate for camera shake, including in low-light situations or when shooting without a tripod. Since the PEN cameras are the world's smallest interchangeable-lens cameras with image stabilization built inside the body, you can take the E-PL1 with you and capture great images, and it won't weigh you down.

Track Your Subjects Wherever They Roam
The E-PL1's Continuous Autofocus (C-AF) Tracking and Autofocus (AF) Target Registration locks your subject into focus and constantly adjusts focus and brightness whether you or your subject is moving. With this mode, a simple push of the shutter release enables you to keep moving subjects in focus--tracking them from left to right and from front to back--within the frame, automatically ensuring that even active subjects, like kids playing sports, are captured clearly.
Olympus PEN E-PL1 highlights

The E-PL1's Imager Autofocus in Live View enables you to compose, focus and capture the shot quickly and easily without ever taking your eyes off the camera's large, 2.7-inch full-color, high-contrast HyperCrystal LCD for an easy, seamless viewing experience when shooting still images or videos. The LCD also provides a wide viewing angle of 176 degrees, which ensures that images can be composed from even the most obscure angles.

This Camera Leaves Others in the Dust
If you're just starting out with a camera that has interchangeable lenses, you don't have to worry about dust spots on your sensor ruining the perfect image every time you change lenses. Spend more time shooting with the E-PL1 and less time worrying about dust with the proven Olympus Dust Reduction System that produces spot-free photos with the exclusive Supersonic Wave Filter, a patented ultrasonic technology that vibrates to remove dust and other particles from the front of the image sensor, capturing them on a special adhesive membrane every time the camera is turned on.

True-to-Life Color
The E-PL1's Live MOS image sensor is complemented by Olympus' TruePic V Image Processor, which produces clear and colorful photos using all the pixel information for each image to provide the best digital images possible. The image processor is noted for accurate natural color, true-to-life flesh tones, brilliant blue skies and precise tonal expression; it also lowers image noise in photos shot at higher ISO settings (ISO 100 to ISO 3200), enabling great results in low-light situations.

Easily Expand Your Creative Horizons With Built-in Effects

Express yourself with in-camera creative features. Professional images are rarely unedited images. Video and still image pros use computer-editing software to render their images with effects that set their shots apart from the pack. Olympus appreciates that you may not have hours to spend retouching your images at the computer, so the E-PL1 incorporates editing effects inside the camera to save you time. Whether you apply in-camera creative effects while shooting an image, or apply them later to images captured without the effects, all are inside the E-PL1, so you can achieve dramatic results on the go without a computer or editing software.

The E-PL1 has six in-camera Art Filters, including a new filter called Gentle Sepia. This filter gives your images and videos a soft, warm sepia cast similar to historical images from the early days of photography. The sepia tones are softer and the blacks are a true black, unlike traditional sepia images. The new filter joins Pop Art, Soft Focus, Pin Hole, Grainy Film and Diorama (the filter that makes everything look as small as the E-PL1).

With the E-PL1's Multiple Exposure function available for still image capture, you are free to tell a visual story your way. The image capture options enable you to shoot one shot, then another and combine them in real time, or capture both shots separately and combine them within the camera later. Take a shot of your significant other, and overlay your self-portrait on top to figure out what your kids will look like. If you have kids already, overlay your kid's face on top of a shot of his or her favorite cartoon character for laughs. Your ability to manipulate space and time makes this new creative multimedia device a veritable time machine.

You often can achieve greater photographic expression by framing a scene in a unique way. The E-PL1 provides four aspect ratios that serve as masks to frame your image to the desired proportions, including the standard 4:3 aspect ratio that is suited to an 8 x 10-inch enlargement; the 16:9 aspect ratio that will display beautifully on a widescreen television; and other popular aspect ratios, such as 3:2 and 6:6. The Multi-Aspect Shooting further expresses your creative vision when combined with in-camera Art Filters and Multiple Exposures.

With the E-PL1, you have your own living library of still images, HD video and audio to remix at your command. In playback mode, you can seamlessly mix stills and movies inside the camera to create a multimedia slideshow, and dub in one of three built-in dramatic background music options to provide a soundtrack for your cinematic creation. With so many creative options, there's no limit to what you can create. Choose whether or not you want to play back just pictures, just movies or a combination; also control playing back the whole movie or just a clip.

Open System Easily Grows with Your Ability

With a basic point-and-shoot camera, you get one lens built into the camera. One lens, that's it. And it's likely a small lens, which doesn't allow a lot of light through to hit the image sensor. So, you may have a difficult time in low-light conditions. And without the option of adding more lenses, you're limited to what that one point-and-shoot lens can do. The E-PL1 solves these issues by accepting a variety of lenses to maximize its functionality. Whether shooting still images or HD video, you can add everything from an extreme wide-angle fisheye lens to a super-telephoto lens for a wide range of expressive options.

The M. Zuiko Digital Micro Four Thirds lenses are designed to be more compact and portable like the E-PL1. Choose from the ED 14-42mm f3.5/5.6 zoom lens (28-84mm equivalent in 35mm cameras) sold with the E-PL1, the ED 17mm f2.8 lens (34mm equivalent), the new super wide-angle zoom ED 9-18mm f4.0-5.6 lens (18-36mm equivalent) or the high-power wide to telephoto zoom ED 14-150mm f4.0-5.6 lens (28-300mm equivalent).

If you want to have even more options, the MMF-2 Four Thirds System Lens Adapter makes the E-PL1 compatible with all Olympus Zuiko Digital Specific lenses and other Four Thirds System lenses from Sigma, Panasonic and Leica. Olympus OM film-based lenses can be attached to the E-PL1 with the MF-2 OM Lens Adapter, and there are third-party adapters developed for lenses from most other manufacturers.

Software & Accessory Options When You're Ready

The E-PL1 incorporates an accessory port for connecting the optional VF-2 live-finder, a detachable electronic viewfinder, or the new optional SEMA-1 external microphone adapter set (which includes the EMA-1 adapter, the ME-51S stereo microphone and a cord) for those who want to capture enhanced audio with any microphone that has a 3.5mm plug. These optional accessories easily slide into the camera's accessory port and hot shoe.

Photographers who wish to hold the E-PL1 up to their eye rather than use the LCD will appreciate that the optional VF-2, which provides 1.15x magnification and a 100 percent field of view with sharp resolution, brightness and contrast. The viewfinder refreshes quickly to minimize image ghosting on fast-moving subjects. It also rotates up to 90 degrees to enable photographers to look down into it, which is useful when shooting subjects from challenging angles. The built-in diopter adjustment and high magnification offer easy viewing with and without glasses.

The E-PL1 offers OLYMPUS [ib] software that includes photography workflow, browsing, editing and unique photo-organizing functions. You can organize your photos by person with automatic face-recognition technology, by location with a Geotagging function or by event. You can easily view photos on an HDTV or on the camera's LCD with the Photo Surfing or Slideshow functions. The name [ib] stands for image bridging, image browsing and image brightening. The software will be available for Windows operating systems only.

Underwater Housing for Aquatic Adventures
The new camera's compact design makes it the perfect companion for all of your dive trips. The PT-EP01 underwater case has been specially customized for the Olympus E-PL1 and is waterproof to a depth of 40 meters (approximately 130 feet). With its durable, high-quality polycarbonate construction, this Olympus housing protects the camera from water while also cushioning it from knocks and bumps on land. The housing enables viewing from either the camera's LCD screen or an optional electronic viewfinder. The flash connectors allow optional use of up to two UFL-2 underwater flash units via fiber optic cable. A nonremovable front lens port accommodates multiple Micro Four Thirds lenses.

New Exterior Design, Same PEN DNA
The E-PL1 streamlines the Olympus Micro Four Thirds PEN series form. Thanks to its compact size (4.51" W x 2.84" H x 1.63" D excluding protrusions) and light 10.4-ounce body, the E-PL1 won't weigh you down when you're on the go.

Product Details

  • Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 1.6 x 2.8 inches ; 11.8 ounces
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Domestic Shipping: Item can be shipped within U.S.
  • International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
  • ASIN: B0037VVWBK
  • Item model number: 262855
  • Batteries 1 Lithium ion batteries required. (included)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,558 in Camera & Photo (See Top 100 in Camera & Photo)
  • Product Warranty: For warranty information about this product, please click here
  • Date first available at February 24, 2010

Read about our customers' top-rated cameras on our review page: Point-and-Shoot Cameras

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

39 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Rico on April 16, 2012
If you have manual focus lenses from your SLR days, this is currently the best deal on a camera body to bring those lenses back to life. There are inexpensive adapters for using lots of SLR lens types, and some old rangefinder lens types, with Micro Four Thirds cameras such as this one. With your old lens mounted, just set the camera mode to A for aperture priority, set the aperture on the lens to your desired f-stop, and the camera will automatically adjust the shutter and ISO for a good exposure. Manually focusing your lens is made easier because the viewfinder can magnify the subject you're focusing on.

Moreover, the camera has in-body image stabilization, so the sensor compensates for camera shake. You just choose your lens's focal length from a menu, and the camera will permit slower shutter speeds without blur. Other camera lines put their image stabilization in their lenses, but the Olympus PENs have it in the body, so it can be used with any lens you mount on the camera.

The camera has a full range of other digital features, and it produces images of excellent quality.

Note that the Micro Four Thirds sensor, while several times the size of the sensor found in point-and-shoot digital cameras, is half the size of a frame of 35mm film. Consequently, any lens on an MFT camera will have the same angle of view as a lens with twice the focal length on a 35mm film camera. For example, a 50mm lens on an MFT camera will give the angle of view that a 100mm lens would give on a 35mm film camera.

I should add that the lenses Olympus makes for its PEN cameras are excellent. The combination of the 14-42mm and 40-150mm zooms would cover a range equal to 28-300mm on a 35mm film camera, and with crisp autofocus and full autoexposure.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By James Bond on June 14, 2012
Verified Purchase
Recently purchased this at $149.95 from Cameta Camera via Amazon.

Since a lens is not included at this price, I've only used it so far with an old canon lens and adapter. Eventually I will get a couple of micro 4/3 lenses, but for now it works like a charm. The pictures turn out nice and manual focusing is not a problem (even without a viewfinder). I personally found it simple to use and intuitive (buttons, menu).

It does not come in a retail box, but in a white box. Everything is included (battery, charger, instruction booklets in english, french, and spanish, software CD, strap, and USB cable). I did not have to install the software in order to download picturs via the USB cable (I use windows XP). The camera is made in China.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Rod Paine on April 17, 2012
Verified Purchase
This is certainly a no brainer, given the extremely low cost. I am using it with the lenses that I purchased for my Panasonic Lumix G3. This OLYMPUS E-PL1 serves as my every day carry camera, for grabbing shots that pop-up, who knows when. Only thing I don't like is the lack of a viewfinder, to deal with the hard to see display in brite day light and having the Lumix G3 with its articulating display has also spoiled me. But, the E-PL1 is certainly a great buy at this cost and my intended use. It replaces my old Canon PowerShot A620 which goes to a new home with a friend. My ultimate carry camera is still my tiny Canon PowerShot S230 Digital ELPH, built like a tank... much like this OLYMPUS E-PL1 appears to be, but with much greater capability, of course.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Vinyl Tap on August 9, 2012
Verified Purchase
Olympus E-PL1 $150
Horusbennu 50mm 1.7 lens <$58
Fotga adapter < $12

Total investment < $220 to learn ICL photography
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By DanC NJ on September 23, 2012
I ordered my Pen E-PL1 from Cameta as a Refurb/Factory Demo. It arrived in a Olympus refurb box, with all the accessories as new. The body is perfect, not a mark on it. I also ordered the 14-42mm auto focus Micro 4/3 lens to go with it. I am not quite as happy with the lens. It takes great photos outdoors in bright sunlight, but indoors, or in low light, it is hit or miss at best. However, it is very fast to focus (be sure to upgrade the firmware to 1.1). The lens is still worth having around for vacation/family type photos, and for video.

What really makes this camera great is the ability to use inexpensive legacy, manual focus lenses, with a very inexpensive aftermarket adapter. I use Olympus Zuiko OM lenses with an adapter, and my 50MM F1.8 is on the camera most of the time. The results with this lens are impressive, although obviously using manual focus is not ideal in situations when there is limited time to take a shot.

My only gripe with this camera is the poor placement of the video button. I hit it often with my right thumb, but I now know from reading the comments here I can program it to off. I will probably have to do that.

Great enthusiast/hobby camera body at a fantastic price.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By AntiJems on July 7, 2012
Verified Purchase
This is a great overall camera. It has a great build quality, all of the buttons and dials are solid. The image quality is nice with the kit lens. It's really flexible with the huge breadth of legacy lenses and the corresponding mount adapters (I recommend Fotodiox adapters). There are also quite a few Micro Four Thirds lenses out now.
The grip is very nice and makes the camera easy to handle. The built-in flash is flexible so you can face upwards to bounce the light.

I have two major gripes about this camera.
1) The SD slot is on the bottom. If you use a tripod you have to remove the tripod mount to get to the card.
2) There is no 3.5mm audio input built into the camera. You have to get the accessory that mounts on the hot shoe and kills the battery quicker.
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