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E-PL1 with M.Zuiko 14-42mm MSC R or E-PM1?

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by FredUK, Feb 7, 2012.

  1. FredUK

    FredUK Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 29, 2012
    Is anyone using an E-PL1 body with a new M.Zuiko 14-42mm MSC R lens? I want to get into micro four thirds and was considering an E-PM1 but the reported image stabilisation problems have sort of put me off that model because I shoot some of my photos indoors in poor light so I may need the IS in some situations. I know the 14-42mm lens is not really the right lens for indoors in poor light and I will add better lenses for indoors in future like the Panasonic 20mm and the Olympus 45mm but for now my budget dictates that I can get just the one lens. I think that the 14-42mm will let me do most of the things I'd like to do but I'd like to hear the experiences of others with regards to indoor shooting. How does the E-PL1 cope indoors with the newer 14-42mm lens? Can it lock focus reliably and quickly or is it a bit hit and miss?

    An E-PM1 with M.Zuiko 14-42mm MSC R lens costs £350. Olympus have a cash back offer for £50 until the end of February so it would only cost £300 with the cash back. I can get a used E-PL1 (with 6 months warranty) and a new M.Zuiko 14-42mm MSC R lens for £270.

    It's a tough decision. An E-PM1 will give me fast AF, an AF Assist lamp for help focusing indoors, a better resolution screen but could have IS problems. For £30 less the E-PL1 would give me a mode dial, a built in flash, better ergonomics, reliable IS but (as I understand it) slower overall AF and possible focusing problems indoors.

    I suppose I could just wait 6 months to see what the E-PM2 brings :eek:  :biggrin:
  2. A lot of the focusing speed complaints about the E-P1/2 and E-PL1 were attributable more to the bundled lenses (14-42MkI, 17/2.8, and 4/3 40-150 with adapter) more so than the bodies. Put any of the MSC or equivalent Panasonic lenses on those bodies and the focusing speed is fine. Not blisteringly fast of course, but fast enough that it was no longer an issue for me (having come from using DSLRs).

    I've never had any particular issues focusing the E-PL1 in low light, but I'm always careful to look for a point of contrast, which is what I've always done with any camera.

    P.S. £30 seems like very small price to pay to get a two generations newer model. I will defend the E-PL1 to all comers but not at that price differential.
  3. fin azvandi

    fin azvandi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 12, 2011
    South Bend, IN
    Nic is right. Given the small price difference the E-PM1 seems like a no brainer. I think the IS problems have been overblown online but I don't have an E-PM1 myself to say for sure.
  4. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    I have two of them, and my personal theory is that this problem has been resolved and you would have to get one from one of the early batches to see any problems.

    Even if there was no IS option at all on the E-PM1 however, I would easily pick it up over an E-PL1 without question. And pay $200 more for it.
  5. applemint

    applemint Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 24, 2012
    For low light indoors you would probably be better off with a faster prime lens like the Panasonic 20mm f1.7 or the Olympus 45mm 1.8 rather than either version of the zoom, if they are within your budget.

    You can get a brand new (body only) E-PL1 on ebay for £139 which would leave you some money to put towards a prime lens.
    Olympus PEN E-PL1 EPL1 Champagne (Body Only) BRAND NEW SEALED 2year Warranty! | eBay

    Or if one prime would be too restrictive and you wanted to go the mkii zoom route instead, you could get the body for £139 as above and buy the mk ii lens separately for £105 - total cost of kit £244 - which is better than the £270 used option and would give you a brand new body and mkii lens with a full Olympus 2 year warranty on the body.

    However, as pointed out by others for not much extra money (£56) you can get a new E-PM1 with mk ii lens. :biggrin:

    [I have an E-PL1 and mk i zoom and love the camera despite it's faults but for me it's at it's best in good light and in any case I also have a (Sony) Nex for indoor low light shots and for using legacy lenses. In fact I like the E-Pl1 enough that I am looking at keeping the E-Pl1 body but also getting an E-PL3 or E-PM1 (which both come with the mk ii kit lens of course).]

    P.S. Found out yesterday that Tesco Direct were selling the E-PL3 with 14-42 lens for £275 (£225 after cashback: bargain or what!) earlier this week but (unsuprisingly) sold out at that price within about 12 hours. Aaaaaargh! :mad: 
  6. FredUK

    FredUK Mu-43 Rookie

    Jan 29, 2012
    Thanks all for your help. Just a quick update. I have ordered a brand new in the box E-PL1 body and a one week old Olympus 14-42mm II R lens for a very good price :thumbup:
    It should be delivered early next week. I hope the weather is good so I can try it our properly. I can't wait :biggrin:
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