I’ve owned a DSLR for the past couple of years, however, with the advances in camera phone technology, I found myself all too often sacrificing image quality for the sake of convenience. The iPhone has been great for rekindling my love for photography, however, I felt it was time to start shooting again with a proper camera, as the image quality just doesn’t stack up. After a little research, I became intrigued with mirrorless micro 4/3’s systems, which have been pioneered by Panasonic and Olympus. I considered several different models including the Fuji X-100 and Panasonic GX7, but when it came down it, the Olympus Pen line was offering exactly what I was after in a camera; an intuitive interface, great image quality, and fast autofocus in a compact, stylish body. After reading great things about the Olympus E-P3, I decided to hold out for it’s successor the E-P5, and have had the last few months to gather some initial impressions.
A large factor in my purchasing decision was form factor. The Olympus E-P5 nails the vintage aesthetic and the build is top-notch. It’s nice to finally see a departure from the giant black plastic molds Canon and Nikon have been putting out since the rise of digital photography. The E-P5 is roughly half the size of my Canon DSLR, making it much more portable and discreet.
As I mentioned earlier, I had narrowed the field down to the Olympus E-P5, Fuji X100 series, and the Panasonic GX7. However, reports of the Fuji’s clunky interface, and the Panasonic GX7’s slower autofocus, shooting speed, and inferior build made the E-P5 the clear choice. The GX7 does have a built in viewfinder, however, with the add-on EVF from Olympus this seemed negligible.
From a user-perspective, the camera is intuitive. It does have a load of features, so to fully grasp the potential of the camera takes some time. Most of all, it’s simply a blast to shoot with, and I find myself taking it places I would have never lugged my old DSLR around to. Having spent the last summer with the EP-5, I certainly have no consumer remorse and would recommend the Olympus E-P5 to anybody looking for a compact, stylish, camera that captures superior image quality.
The above images were taken while honeymooning in Colombia and Panama aboard the Gypsy Moth catamaran. To view more images, Visit me on Flickr.Shop the Olympus E-P5