February 28, 2017 by Michael
Outstanding smaller camera
I had been shooting with an E-M1 for a couple of years but I wanted something smaller to carry with me every day. So I eventually sold my E-M1 and bought a reconditioned PEN-F and 17mm 1.8 prime. I've been extremely pleased with the results. With a neoprene camera pouch I feel comfortable tossing my camera and lens in my bag every day. As they say, the best camera is the one you have with you, but my PEN-F is much better than my smartphone. Anyway, besides the size I love the design and handling. The art filter dial is nice as I enjoy shooting in B&W and it's nice to seamlessly switch from color to B&W while shooting. The articulated screen is also nice, and I particularly enjoy flipping the screen over so it's not visible. It makes for a more retro shooting experience and helps me focus on the images instead of reviewing what I've already shot or fiddling with settings. The physical controls are nicely customizable and do everything I need them to, so the screen is mostly superfluous anyway. At the end of the day I'm extremely pleased with just about every aspect of the camera, with two caveats, hence the 4 stars instead of 5: First, image transfer to my tablet or phone is quite slow. My smart devices serve as my primary photo management equipment these days, but it takes a ridiculously long time to transfer more than a few images. The process is not particularly streamlined and although useful, it's unnecessarily cumbersome. I'd like to hope firmware and software updates could solve this but it seems unlikely. This an area where Olympus seems to be lagging considerably behind the competition. The other issue is probably related to the fact that Inbougjt the camera reconditioned. Although it functions properly, every once and a while the view screen goes black and requires the camera to be hard reset (removing the battery and then restarting the camera). It doesn't do this often, but enough that it's mildly frustrating. All in all it's a great camera. I didn't really touch on image quality, because it meets the excellent standards of Olympus 4/3rds cameras. Simply excellent. I love this camera.
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January 27, 2017 by Karl
Best camera system I ever owned.
This is my travel camera to go to when I go abroad. I usually include the Olympus pro zooms from 7mm to 150mm. I may also take a couple of fast fixed focal length lenses. Last fall (September to November) I traveled widely in Germany, France and Italy. Being able to carry all of this equipment in a medium sized bag was a great convenience. The camera and the lenses performed as expected. I have been a photographer for more than fifty years. It is a relief to have moved from the heavy DSLRs to this professional micro 4/3 system - I also own the 5 - Mark II which I brought as a back-up but used very little. I am so confident in the Olympus system that I just added the 12 to 100 mm lens to my collection. The features of the camera are a dream come true. I highly recommend the Pen-F to anyone who is interested in a solid built camera and wants quality images and doesn't want to suffer from carrying excessive weight.
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January 25, 2017 by Timothy
The almost perfect M 4/3 camera
I stepped into the realm of Micro 4/3 from Dslr's solely to take advantage of the portability, sacrificing the highest possible image quality for the ability & ease of having my camera with me ALL the time. My thought was that many great pictures far outweighed a few awesome pictures(which I could still get with my Dslr.) I purchased an OMD-EM5 more than four years ago and have very happily been using it ever since. The progression from that original EM5 might naturally have been to the OMD-EM1 eventually leading to the mark ll. But, I did not purchase the EM1 electing to hold out for the new EM1 Mark ll. When it was released I tried it out and I came to the conclusion that the Mark ll is no longer the portable M4/3 camera that the first EM5 was. While Full Frame and APS-C sensor cameras have been getting smaller and lighter, the Olympus M4/3's have been getting larger especially if you couple them with any of the new pro series lenses. I returned the EM1 Mark ll camera because when it was sitting on my desk next to my Pentax K3 it was about the same size. Yes its a great camera, the most capable M4/3 yet. Its very versatile and fast focusing with somewhat better resolution than the previous 16mp version. But, it is no longer extremely portable, definitely not light and pocket-able like my original EM5. I am not one to lug around a lot of heavy pro lenses - mostly just fast primes. On some occasions I do take landscape photos but a full frame camera is better at capturing the detail, depth of field and subtle qualities of light and color. So the EM1 ll has now developed into a camera that doesn't fit my needs anymore. A little distraught I started reading about the Pen F. It doesn't have a weather sealed body and the new TruePicâ„¢ VIII Dual Quad Core Processor, and obviously doesn't shoot as fast - BUT it has the same 20mp sensor AND it's light and portable like my original EM5. I believe that the M4/3 sensor has reached its image quality limit, and my future partner camera to my Pen-F will have a full frame sensor because there are now many quality small versions to choose from. If Olympus weather seals the Pen F ll along with adding the Dual Quad Core Processor and resolving a few manual dial design issues(I know if, if, if) But, my point is that I am sure I won't be the only one to head back to the smaller camera for the sake of portability. For now, I am happy that there was another option since I am invested in the M 4/3 lenses. I still believe M4/3 have a place in the photographic world.
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January 11, 2017 by RayF.
Highly recommended. Love this camera so far!
I took my time before I decided on buying the Olympus Pen-F. I wanted a camera that was small, but still gave me the ability to manually adjust the settings, change lenses when needed, and offer best possible image quality and features. I looked at many brands and models, and found something missing with each of them. Pen-F came the closest to the perfect camera for me - it is small, light, offers a ton of flexibility and functionality, and so far I have been very impressed by the picture quality as well. I am using the Olympus 25mm f1.8 lens which also has been great so far. I am switching from a Nikon SLR to this camera, and so far I am not regretting this decision. Some of the reviewers on the Internet complained about the complex menus. Coming from the Nikon and having also used other cameras, so far I am not finding the menus too complex and hard to follow. I highly recommend this camera.
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January 3, 2017 by Ken Z
Pen - Film Simulation Machine
I cannot believe it took me this long to pick up this camera since it was released to market over a year now. I mainly dismissed the PEN-F for already owning the EM5-MKII but despite not having a significant improvement on specifications sheets, this camera is definitely a more refined piece of technology compared to the OM-D. The price and retro-design ergonomics may scare you away but once you start using it and get a understanding of the controls and features, you will begin to understand the design and operational philosophy: that is it's capability to adjust the final outcome of your shot before and after your shutter is pressed. The front dial essentially acts as film selection for your shot. The ability to change your "film" preset with a rotation of the dial immediately gives you liberty to choose from a large pool of profiles and they're not set in stone. You can change the look and tonality of those film presets with a wide range of enhancements, colours, vignetting and etc. This allows me to skip the post processing step at my PC which is what I usually do with my RAW files from my EM5 MKII. I'm not saying that the OM-D is a bad camera, but Olympus did put a more feature-filled post processing engine in the PEN-F that the EM5 MKii does not have. From my stand point the price is justified as the PEN-F is built with better components (shutter sound, metal knobs and dials), slightly better ergonomics, next to none shutter lag and feature packed in-body software for post processing when shooting RAW. These reasons make the PEN-F a superior photographic device and a superior shooting experience compared to the OM-D despite the lack of weather sealing. My only gripe is that the Olympus PRO capture software does not connect to the PEN-F. So one star is knocked off for that omission of software feature. It makes zero sense to not have this feature for the PEN F when its so robust in software capability. PLEASE, Olympus, add the PEN-F to future revisions for the pro capture software.
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