Olympus Stylus Epic Point and Shoot

Available At:
Stylus Epic

Precision-crafted and styled for success, the Infinity Stylus Epic has an ultra-compact, all-weather body, and a high-resolution 35mm f2.8 lens. Fully automatic operation, intelligent variable-power flash, and lots more of the advanced technology features that have made our Stylus cameras famous worldwide.

User Reviews (209)

Showing 1-10 of 209  
Pau Zimmerman   Intermediate [Nov 09, 2012]
Strength:

This little gem has very good metering. It can be every bit as fast for (small windows of opportunity )as any Rangefinder out there. Extremely compact to carry everywhere. I can get great food shots with flash off on a small tripod in low light conditions. Outdoors it performs admirably with slide film because of the most acurate meter for a P&S ever.

Weakness:

None that I can really complain about...just take your time when you need to, which for me is how you go about photography anyways.

Overall this little cam has class even in 2012... too bad they cant warrant the manufacturing do to the digital market. Still like to hold film print in my hand.

Customer Service

Haven't needed!

Similar Products Used: Many slrs, rangfinders, p&s, Digital slr for work!
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Available At:
martin   Expert [Nov 03, 2011]
Strength:

small, sharp lens easy to use, flash no drama. the best tiny film camera i've used and cheap as.

Weakness:

When you turn off the camera it loses its spot metering and you need to reset it.

travelled around ireland for 3 months, always in my pocket, my slr film camera being too big to always carry. shot 5 rolls of slide film ,some 50 and some 22 iso and some c41 negs.
all were perfectly exposed using the spot meter and as sharp as my nikkor lenses.

Customer Service

n/a

Similar Products Used: I have a dozen compact film cameras and this is my choice every time, wish I had the ultra wide .
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
W James Starkey   Professional [Jun 08, 2011]
Strength:

Simple, let's me have confidence.

Weakness:

I once shot with it in rain for an hour and a half before it quit. I was ready also.

This was, is, a great camera. I just self published a book on blurb.com shot entirely with this camera. Believe me, you should take a look. Go to blurb.com and search for "Streets of Joy". It is a documentary of Brazil Carnival in historic neighborhoods.
Great cameras help to take great photos.

Customer Service

This is an kryptonite camera.

Similar Products Used: Digital cameras don't have near the resolution in highlights or shadows.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Available At:
wailtd@gmail.com   Professional [Jun 18, 2010]
Strength:

Size, Fully Automatic, Spot meter for more difficult exposure situations, Time-Date stamp, Adjustable flash settings, Self-timer. Good ergonomics make this a wonderful little film camera.

Weakness:

Fully Automatic (this is definitely not on par with an SLR), have to check your LCD for your date-imprint settings every time you power it up. Finding manual difficult but found similar manuals (see summary above.)

I found this at Salvation Army for 49 cents. It looked a little rough but I got it home, popped a CR123 in it and man... it fired right up. Amazingly, it still had the correct date and time on the back LCD display. All the buttons worked and it seemed all the operations were fine. It was tough loading film initially. It took several attempts but once I got the notch on the take-up reel caught on the film leader sprocket hole, shazam, it wound itself right up. This looks like a tough little p&s. I took it out in the rain the first day shooting with it and it worked without a hitch. Simply dried it off with a towel when I was through. Fuji-400 print film was outstanding when developed. Everything was tack sharp and well exposed. 4x6 prints were great. I scanned up to 10x8 without a problem. I'd recommend grabbing one if you get the chance. Pocket-size, all-weather, good lens. Overall fantastic little P&S.
Manuals - http://www.olympusamerica.com/files/oima_cckb/O_Stylus.pdf or http://www.olympusamerica.com/files/oima_cckb/SEZ80_english.pdf

Customer Service

None.

Similar Products Used: All kinds of P&S 35mm cameras. This Olympus is one of the better ones.
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
MARTYr Photo   Intermediate [Dec 24, 2007]
Strength:

- Light meter is solid and very smart. How many cameras do you know of that have color meters in them? Handheld color meters are expensive!!! I can't believe they included that technology in this camera.

- Spot metering! Again, I can't believe they put something as cool as spot metering in a point n' shoot. I also can't believe they made activating it such a pain in the butt.

- Lens produces interesting pictures that I think stand out from what is becoming the norm in this digital age of vernacular photography.

- Design and styling is just as sleek as cameras being made today. Like the XA (the camera the Stylus Epic was spawned from) the design of this camera was way ahead of its time when released. Truly timeless lines on this beauty. I fits in your hand so well.

- Weather proof design can take far more moisture than my digi point n' shoot. I just wandered around in the jungles of Puerto Rico for a week with my Epic and the thing didn't miss a shot. In the mist and the rain, shoved in and out of my pocket, the camera rocked.

Weakness:

- Spot metering function is tough to activate in a consistent manner.

- Flash photography with any small camera is tough. The lens and flash are so close together, it's hard to get pleasing results. The Sylus Epic handles the task of mixing flash and ambient light brilliantly and even a blast of full frontal light has a hard time taking away from the images this camera is capable of producing.

- Manual ISO control would have been nice. The auto ISO DX sensor is a geat feature on a fully auto camera like this one, but an override that allows you to adjust the film speed to your liking would have been super cool. I like to shoot my print film one stop overexposed to help keep the shadows from filling in (something especially important when shooting with a contrasty lens) and this is not possible with the Epic unless I want to somehow change the DX barcode on each canister of film I load. So far the meter has really done a great job of keeping the tonality of the images under control, but there are situations where no averaging meter is going to get it right. I guess that's what the spot meter is for, though.

- Olympus stopped making it. A huge weakness!

Such a cool little camera! It's the one I grab whenever I head out the door. My Canon Powershot S60 digi has been sitting, unused, for months. Its image quality can't touch the Epic. True, shooting film is a labor of love, but I really enjoy being able to present shots that don't look like they came from the same digi point n' shoot that everyone and their grandma owns.

I've shot with this camera in all kinds of lighting, with and without flash, and the meter just rocks. The soft fill flash capabilities are nice and have given me very pleasing results on shots that would have been a blown out mess if taken with a digital.

I've read some complaints about the AF system. I haven't had any problems getting the AF to focus on exactly what I want. I know the selling points on the camera state that it can focus on subjects that aren't in the center of the frame, but I want to know exactly where my AF is landing, so I point the crosshairs in the center on my point of focus, lock it in, recompose and shoot. That's how you have to use this camera. It's pretty much fully auto, but you do have to understand how the AF behaves in order to get consistent shots from it. It's not going to know what you want to focus on unless you tell it.

The lens on this camera produces beautiful images full of saturation, contrast and detail. It represents the space around your subjects in a way similar to nice SLR lenses. It's hard to explain but you can see it in the images. They have a certain, very pleasing look. It is tough to get the lens to stop down into the f/8, 11 and 16 range. I'm assuming that might only happen in bright snow or beach conditions with ISO 1600 film. But, for normal shooting, this camera does tend to keep the lens open wide so you can get fast shutter speeds and fewer blurred pictures. The bokeh on the lens is really nice, so I don't mind the shallow DOF.....you just have to know it's going to be there in low to medium lighting conditions and compose accordingly. Shooting fast film in this camera is a good idea for this reason. ISO 400, 800 and 1600 are good places to start.

Get one before they're gone forever.

Customer Service

Haven't needed to talk to them.

Similar Products Used: Nikon L35AF2
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Available At:
tim_at   Intermediate [Aug 31, 2007]
Strength:

Very good lens (almost as good as an XA!), light weight, spot metering, weather resistant.

Weakness:

Very little exposure control, exposure programming is too shutter-biased, as if you would NEVER use a tripod!

Not as good as an old XA unless you really need the autfocus..a little easier to get perhaps. Exposure programming biased heavily to open aperture, so even with ISO 400 film in low or moderate light DOF is limited. Find an XA in good shape, you'll have more control!

Customer Service

Got it from Olympus directly refurbished for under $20! Haven't needed any service since, though.

Similar Products Used: Olympus XA/XA2, Canon Sure Shot Clasic 120, Sure Shot 85, Minolta Freedom Zoom Explorer
OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
5
jimbo_uk   Intermediate [May 15, 2006]
Strength:

Small, light, tough, cheap and reliable
Spot meter
Weather and dust proof
Fast lens, sharp stopped down
Wide range of shutter speeds 4s - 1/1000s
Wide range of film speeds ISO50-3200 (but in full stops only)

Weakness:

No manual control
Noisy motors
Flash mode resets to auto when you switch the camera off
Tiny buttons (obviously)
Very very hard to open while wearing gloves!

I have three of these: silver date 10GBP off ebay, silver 'normal' 30GBP new from Dixons and black 'normal' 6GBP off ebay!

These are great when I don't want the bulk of an SLR and associated kit, I normally take two around with me, one with ISO 400 colour print and the other with ISO 400 chromogenic b&w. As mentioned by someone else it will try to maintain a fast shutter speed, using 400 film means the camera is more likely to stop down sooner, giving sharper pictures (b&w enlargements to 10x8 are excellent). Out of interest there's a website somewhere with the program chart for this, it shows that the Olympus will start to stop down sooner than the Yashica T4

The lens is soft wide open but depending on what you're shooting and how big you want to print it doesn't matter too much. I have used TMAX 100 for general night shots where I find a little softness adds to the atmosphere.

Seems to always want to fire the flash, so switch it off when you don't want it, but remember this resets when you close the front. An annoying 'feature' but it's now become routine to switch the flash off when I open the front. The buttons are tiny, but as someone else said it's a tiny camera so they will be...

It's also pretty durable (dropped onto tarmac, just a few scratches) and the rubber gaskets keep out the dust from your pocket as well as the weather!
I.R. focus is accurate (wait for the green light!) and can focus in poor light & on subjects with low contrast.

Of course as it's program only it offers no manual control, but you know that when you buy it. You can always use the spot meter to lock exposure on a suitable midtone if you want (press the flash & timer buttons together to switch to spot.)
The compact Ricoh GR1 series offer exposure comp and aperture priority but cost about ten times as much. Above this you can find the Contax T2/3 and Leica Minilux/CM, but they're even more expensive.
The aperture priority Minox 35 series are something to consider, good lens, but after two cameras and two failures, plus it's clone, the Kiev 35A (R.I.P. - Rest In Pieces) I called it a day, guess they're getting old now.
Don't mention the Lomo LC-A (great lens trapped in an awful body, at least it's value broken is equiv. to a pair of secondhand working mju II/Stylus Epics)

In conclusion: A modern day Trip 35, this camera is ideal for anyone wanting a cheap, tough, easy to use walkabout to cover most situations that won't matter if it breaks or is stolen, but still wants good quality results. The 'program only' even makes a refreshing change from the endless dials, modes and numbers, sometimes it's nice to just point and shoot!

Customer Service

Not needed

Similar Products Used: Minox 35 GT, Minox 35 ML, Kiev 35A, Lomo LC-A, Olympus Trip 35, Olympus XA3, Minolta AF-DL, Fujifilm 320ixZ (useless APS)
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
Available At:
thesweetestsongs   Beginner [May 02, 2006]

A very nice camera. Many features that i enjoy when i am looking for a camera. I am not such a big photo person though, i wish i was better but this camera is putting me a step forward in having my dreams come true. It has advanced my photography skills and i am glad for that.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
ajuk   Casual [Dec 09, 2005]
Strength:

Its quick to work and will focus in almost any light. Sharp. Tiny. No zoom lens means its lens is fast. Spot meeter.

Weakness:

Can’t control it manually, a lot of Modern digital compacts can be controlled manually (like my Fuji F610) This cant. What is even worse is that there does not seem to be any camera this size that does have any manual control, and I doubt that having manual control would have made it much bigger. It’s so automated you can’t even set the ISO manually even if you scratch off the DX coding; it just sets the ISO automatically to 100. I think the reason why Olympus made it so automatic is because they did not realize how popular this would be with enthusiasts, who want manual control. If I want a tiny ultra light camera that I can carry around anywhere and have aperture priority ETC I cant have it least not without breaking the bank, because I don't think any one makes one. The closest I can think of is Olympus's own XA (the origional XA) A slightly longer lens would have been nice as the lens is a prime I think 40 or 45mm would have worked better.

This is one amazing camera, tack sharp when it stops down., I really love this camera, but some times its a bit hit and miss, as it too automated. Many film compacts with few exceptions negate there advantages with crappy zoom lenses, so this camera is one so a decent camera with out a zoom lens is a change. Digital SLRs are good but when it come to cameras this size a digital cant come close, and that’s not likely to change any time soon. The reason for this is that the sensors in tiny digital cameras normally measure about 7.2x5.35mm Verses a film compacts full frame 36x24mm. That is a bigger difference than there is between 35mm and 4x5 large format (4x5" has 15x the area of 35mm, 35mm has 22.4x the area of digital compact sensor) That’s the reason why things aren’t likely to change any time soon as getting a large sensor into a tiny camera would be very difficult indeed, and shoving more mega pixels isn’t going to help, I would bet any money that the 4MP Nikon D2H or even the 2.74MP D1H can produce shaper images than any 7MP compact. Olympus seem to have underestimated who would want this camera as it has 200 reviews on phototogaphyreview.com it would seem that it is used by a lot of enthusiasts, so despite what other people have said I am about to criticize it for lack of control. But it still gets a 4 as the image quaility is outstanding! I would definately recomend it to anyone.who wants a high quality camera to carry anywhere with little compramise.

Similar Products Used: Fuji F610, Olympus XA2
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
5
normy   Expert [Oct 15, 2005]
Strength:

No zoom. Fast (for a P&S) 2.8 lens gives shallow depth of field. Tough and reliable. Weatherproof(ish). Very small and light. Excellent control of focus and exposure if you handle it right. Good fill flash. Spot meter/focus. Good battery life. Fantastic value for money.

Weakness:

Viewfinder is adequate but nothing to get excited about. Most of the time I want the flash turned off, but the default id for it to be on 'auto' whenever the camera is turned on. As usual on P&S cameras the "red-eye-reduction" function is a waste of effort. Doesn't display frame count unless turned on.

A great little camera with a surprising amount of control possible, but you've got to read the manual and think about what you're doing. A good lens for its type and better than most P&S lenses, but it isn't going to match a good 35mm on an SLR.

Similar Products Used: Yashica T4 Nikon Lite Touch AF
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 209  

(C) Copyright 1996-2018. All Rights Reserved.

photographyreview.com and the ConsumerReview Network are business units of Invenda Corporation

Other Web Sites in the ConsumerReview Network:

mtbr.com | roadbikereview.com | carreview.com | photographyreview.com | audioreview.com