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on September 11, 2014
I really like this camera and decided to keep it instead of the EPL5 which cost twice as much. It takes very sharp pictures and handles outdoor conditions well. Indoors is another story. I took some indoor pictures and at first they look very sharp but blow them up a little and the noise really kicks in. I would say flash or a tripod will be a necessary for the kit lens indoors. I've got some great shots of flowers and bees close up. There is a small clip on flash included that even has it's own velvet bag to carry it in. The battery charges outside the camera in a charger with a heavy plug in cord. There is a strap included also. I thought the Olympus was very well built and has a control knob on top to go to the different settings. There are a lot of menus to go through in set up and to use but I don't need a lot of them so I can live with that. I leave the screen setting at Macro so I just click to screen and hit ok and I'm in . I think you can make the menu as complicated as you want but I keep it simple. I'm still trying all the different features so I can't comment on a lot of them. I still haven't tried video yet because my main thing is stills. I have a canon sx50 that takes pretty good videos so I'll try later. I got this camera for $259 and it's a great deal. Hard to spend $499 on the EPL5 when this one works so well. I' ll buy a better lens later with that money. Olympus has some great lenses that are within reach.
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on November 27, 2013
I love this little camera! I shoot a Canon 60D with an assortment of lenses and have also been using my iPhone 5 camera (8MP) a lot in last year, but I have been thinking of purchasing a high end compact (P&S) camera that had a hot shoe and shot RAW. However, the $500+ price tag on those I was considering was a turn off. Having heard so much about the micro 4/3 mirrorless cameras, I decided to investigate them. When I saw I could get this Olympus PEN E-PL3 (silver) for only $259 my decision was made! I got what I had been looking plus more: interchangeable lens camera with incredible customization possibilities along with larger sensor (=better resolution) than a P&S, flash hot shoe, RAW format capability, small and light camera yet easy to handle.

I was a bit concerned that I was buying a camera model that was already two years old with two newer models of this line already out, but I need not have worried. Though - with experience so far - images at ISO 1600 and above are not great (but I'm still learning how to get the best out of this camera!), I am otherwise very happy with image quality and sharpness. And, unfortunately, I am already - after owning the camera only one week! - lusting after other lenses for it! I am, however, happy with the range of views the "kit" 14-42mm lens offers me. I am also very pleased to see that I can use my old Canon lenses with my new PL3 as well. Along with the camera I purchased an inexpensive adapter that allows me to mount the 50mm, f/1.8 lens (FD) from my old (1972) Canon FTb camera, as well as any other FD lenses I can find to purchase cheaply. With that success, I decided to go ahead and order a more expensive ($115) adapter so I could also use the small collection of Canon EF lenses that I currently use with my Canon 60D. Have not received that yet, but look forward to seeing how those lenses work with the PL3.

I'm documenting my experiences at[...]
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on September 15, 2013
I bought this camera because I needed more features than my Nikon point and shoot had and I wanted to keep the price in the sane range as a point and shoot. However, the biggest appeal is the ability to tap into a pretty nice lens and flash system (micro 4/3rds lenses and olympus remote controlled flashes) and still have a camera that is easy to carry around. It really is a compact system. I can carry the equivalent of a 100mm macro, a 28-80mm zoom, 100-300 mm zoom and a 90mm prime, two flashes and assorted accessories in a small size courier bag weighing less than 5 lbs.

Pros: fantastic pictures with the kit lens it comes with. Very flexible, lots of configuration options. Also, if you want to upgrade, you can just buy a new body and keep all your old lenses.

Cons: when comparing to the latest generation of mirrorless cameras, the sensor starts getting noisy above ISO800 and the consumer grade lenses are a little slow. Also, the latest mirrorless cameras are running around 16 mp, significantly more than the 12 mp of this camera. Still, for the price hard to beat.
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on March 28, 2014
Serious photographers, please ignore this review. It will infuriate you. This is for amateurs and soccer moms.

I'm in NO way a photographer of any kind, but I thought that we should have a nicer camera than our phones for our impending child's birth. I opened the box yesterday and charged it to take a few pictures this afternoon to test it out. WOW is all I can say. I'm taking pictures in auto mode that look as nice as some of my friends' dSLR photos. Crisp, focused foreground with the blurry background, etc. I got nice pictures of moving animals, which was a big positive for me.
Now I'm just looking for a pancake lens to make it more purse sized. I read about the body cap lens, but reviews make it sound like you need adequate outdoor lighting and most of my photos would be indoors.
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on September 9, 2013
Already have an E-P1 and have added two Lumix lens to complement the original Zuiko 14-42. The E-PL3 was bought for traveling - the P1 is such a piece of art it's too precious to take on the road. The E-PL3 is lighter and smaller than the P1 and has a (strong) plastic body but it feels and functions very well. It feels expensive. Am pairing it with the original Zuiko 14-42 and not the one it came with. the latter feels cheaper and less substantial than the original though I can't vouch for it's quality in action. This chance combination is attractive, very portable, and performs comparably to the P1. At current Amazon prices (I bought for $265) this is a very fine camera. Some reviews have complained about the learning curve required to master the functions. Possibly because I was already familiar with the E-P1, I didn't experience any such problems. It's not intuitive but not awash with dark operating secrets either.
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on March 18, 2016
Great little camera, do not expect the performance of a $1000+ set up, but its a bang for your buck!
I noticed that extra lenses are quite expensive, so I order a lot of old OM lenses for cheap off ebay and a adapter for it and its lots of fun to play with it to get great pictures. Also its hard to get a good grip because of the slim design but I fixed that with a Flipback G4 Grip for$10 dollars and it makes a LOT of improvement.I will post pics.
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on February 26, 2014
I bought this so that I could tiptoe into the micro 4/3 world to see how things were. I'm now happy to say that all expectations were exceeded. I own an ageing Olympus E-510 and was sceptical of the whole pen series of cameras. Now l am a convert.
I took the dive because this camera and lens was so inexpensive. After a week I started to plan on my next micro 4/3 lens purchase. Well played Olympus, well played.
Read the other reviews here for details as they are dead on in their assessment of this camera.
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on April 2, 2014
I have only been using it for about a month now, but so far I really like it. The compact design is great, the pictures come out excellent, and I love the tilting screen. There are a lot of modes that I do not use often (all the scene modes) but all of the priority modes I do use frequently and they work as they should. I got a fotodiox lens mount adapter and use my PK lenses on this camera with no problems! Love this camera so far, but the real test will be a trip next month.
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on December 11, 2013
Haven't had a lot of time to use it but so far so good. Big improvement in terms of auto focus, smoothness of zoom and burst mode over the EPL 1 which I still have. Compact and easy to hold for me; had seen reviews that it was a bit difficult to hold in one hand. Great quality images. The only downside is that it's minimum ISO is 200 and the bracketing function is somewhat limited. I would recommend this camera and it is an unbelievable value for the price.
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on October 12, 2014
This is a great pocket cam for those who would like a bit more control over their images than you can get with an all in one compact digital. Beautiful image quality, easy to navigate menus, awesome size. Perfect for when I don't want to haul my DSLR and big lenses around.
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