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Olympus E-PM2 Pen Compact System Cameras
The Olympus PEN Mini E-PM2 is designed for compact system camera beginners and photographers who want SLR performance with point-and-shoot size and simplicity. The E-PM2 features the same 16-megapixel Live MOS sensor as the OM-D E-M5, a wide-format capacitive touch-screen LCD with Touch Shutter technology, a simple and direct user-interface, and optional wireless connectivity that is optimised for social media use.
Submitted by Greekfreak a Casual
Date Reviewed: October 4, 2014
Strengths: Lightness, visual options, AF speed, decent build
Weaknesses: No EVF or built-in flash, slightly complex menu, no tilt-screen
As a first-time mirrorless camera user, pretty much every review worth reading prior to purchasing this was dead-on. This camera packs quite a punch for such a low price, to the point that casual amateurs will truly enjoy using it without feeling like they should wrap it in a diaper. Same basic specs as the much larger, heavier, way more expensive OM-D, but without a viewfinder, external dials, or the weather-proofing.
The build quality has had some complaints but not with me--the camera has enough of a heft to it that it doesn't feel like it's "Made In China" (although it is, sadly), and it doesn't feel like you need to treat it with kid gloves. Cosmetically, it's sharp-looking and reasonably well laid-out, with the hand-grip giving you just enough to hold onto without looking like it was stuck on as an afterthought. I'm still convinced that the battery door is too flimsy for anybody's preferences, but so far it's not been an issue.
My camera came with the M.Zuiko 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 RII kit lens as well as the 40-150mm f/4.0-5.6 R zoom lens, and Though I initially got more use out of the former, the latter lens is definitely worth keeping. The basic 14-42mm lens is decent enough (but I've since gone and replaced it with a faster, more compact prime lens), and by-and-large, if you're just using the camera for everyday use, it's reasonably versatile.
The Art Settings within the camera are incredibly useful, especially since they include a number of colour filters that you might otherwise have to buy as extra accessories. The flash, I can't comment on since I've barely used it. I intended this camera for outside/daytime use, and so far it's been great. I will admit that the menu takes a lot of getting used to, and for the novice, this will be a steep learning curve. As you play around with it more however, you find yourself using fewer automatic settings just because you can, and just because it's actually more fun to experiment with. The live-guide function is also a bit tricky to negotiate around, but in the end, it's all designed to make photography easier ONCE YOU GET USED TO IT!!! The key is to stick with it and don't get discouraged. As with any camera, you will take horrible shots and some nice ones, and eventually you will learn exactly how to improve your accuracy.
In short, the two-lens kit if you can still find it is excellent value for money. I paid roughly $400 for mine whereas a friend bought the OM-D for almost 4x that amount, and my pictures have come out as well if not better. So much of photography is being in the right place at the right time with the right light sources and the right subjects.
Price Paid: $400.00
Type of photography: Outdoor
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