Olympus' direction with E-P3, E-PL3 and personal choices

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by CarlB, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. CarlB

    CarlB Mu-43 Veteran

    In my opinion, the E-P3 really should have been the E-PL3. It's essentially an upgrade to the E-PLX line.

    But, Olympus marketing saw differently with a need to integrate "compact bridge" cameras further into the PEN lineup, hence the new direction for the E-PLX series.

    So, instead of the E-P3 that many of us were hoping for with built in viewfinder (instead of flash) - we have essentially another E-PLX series upgrade. And two new "lesser-stablemate" variations.

    I've never used the flash on the E-PL1, E-PL2, or now the E-P3. Probably will on exceedingly rare occasions.

    If you presently have the E-PL2, and don't need the much faster response of the E-P3, wait. Hopefully Olympus will announce the real E-PX series successor, or a new "Pro" series that will be closer to what we were hoping for.

    I'll keep the E-P3, but it's really a toss-up as to whether it was the best purchase for me versus wait for the next development cycle. I do like that the E-P3 is fast ...
  2. mach330

    mach330 Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 19, 2011
    The OC
    I'm coming from an epl2 as well. I agree in a sense that it does feel more like an upgrade to the pl line. I do love the thumb dial as hated using the circle dial on my epl2. I love the build quality as well . I probably should have waited to get the ep3 instead of the epl2. I still feel it's worth the upgrade as the af is quite fast. I would feel even better if it had the tilting screen of the epl3.
  3. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    LOL - the "GF2 uproar" begins anew, this time in the Oly camp.
  4. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Real Name:
    It's nice that the AF speed on E-Ps is finally brought up to being competitive. At the price, though, the E-P3 really should have included at least a tilt LCD, if not articulating. I agree that in place of a pop up flash (I avoid flash in every way I can) a built in EVF would offer great and convenient utility. I think future versions will include this stuff. It's too bad that it's taking so long, though. For me, between the E-P3 and E-PL3, with it's tilt screen, I think the PL3 probably gets the nod.
  5. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    What was the "GF2 uproar" :confused:
  6. ssgreenley

    ssgreenley Mu-43 Top Veteran

    May 12, 2011
    I agree--it's puzzling. Before it was clear that EPs were for stepping down and EPLs were for people stepping up. It isn't clear who is being targeted with the EPL now that the pm is obviously for upgraders from p&s...
  7. Pen F

    Pen F Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 21, 2011
    I agree it all is a bit puzzleing. Chalk it up to growing pains. Also choice is always a good thing. Pick the one that suits you best and go for it.
  8. DHart

    DHart Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Jan 7, 2010
    Scottsdale, Arizona
    Real Name:
    It's a very good move for Panasonic and Olympus to offer some models for the step up from P&S crowd. That's the mass market with the buying power and financial input to drive m4/3 from a niche format to a mainstream format, which we will all benefit from, whether we prefer the dumbed down versions or the full-tilt bells and whistle versions or something in between. I embrace the ability to have and choose from a GF3, a G3, and a GH2 for my small camera imaging needs. The more widespread m4/3s becomes (especially through adoption by the mass market shooters), the more the "system" is funded to grow and thus, the better for us, the enthusiasts.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    The E-PL3 is for those ho want the slimmest design possible without sacrificing any features. It's the "stripped down" E-PM1 which is more puzzling, but I see it as simply competing with the marketplace as an entry-level budget model. Much like the E-PL1 originally did to compete with the Sony NEX, and it became the hottest selling model becaue of its budget specs. So although the E-PL3 gives you the most out of that form factor and essentially the E-PM1 is a redundant dumbed down version, Olympus would probably be commiting financial suicide by not offering te E-PM1.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Art

    Art Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2011
    San Francisco, CA
    I don't think E-PM1 is redundant. In fact it's the only model I am considering buying out of all new Pens provided it's the cheapest of the bunch. It's a great second camera to use with pancakes. I couldn't care less about tilting screen cause it's not nearly as useful as articulating screen. After trying G3 for a few weeks I couldn't be bothered using EVF. I prefer LCD by far.
    For bright sun and MF there is VF-2 which is far superior to built-in EVF because it tilts.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. phigmov

    phigmov Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Apr 4, 2010
    I'll be looking for a complement to my E-P1 - from a cost perspective it'll probably be an E-PL3.

    Interestingly the E-PL1/2 have been cut to $800 and $900NZ respectively with the kit lens in anticipation of the E-PL3 landing. Hopefully it'll arrive under $1k. I paid $1600 for the E-P1 18mths ago and now I see the E-P3 going for $1400.

    I'm after the faster AF but other than that its all about the mount and glass.

    Hopefully the NZ$ exchange rate holds up over the coming months.
  12. ~tc~

    ~tc~ Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Oct 22, 2010
    Houston, TX
    You must be new 'round here.

    There was a huge uproar how the GF2 wasn't the "real" successor to the GF1.

    Search and read up, it was quite ridiculous how everyone got SOOOO disappointed after they built everything up in their head about what a GF2 "should" be.... And then practically all of them have now used one and come back saying "I was wrong the GF2 (and now 3) is a wonderful camera"
  13. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    They also said that about the E-5 over the E-3, and the E-P2 over the E-P1... the one that I would actually consider correct was the E-520 over the E-510, lol. :D
  14. Promit

    Promit Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 6, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    Real Name:
    Promit Roy
    I don't understand the E-PL3. It has the smallest screen due to the tilt functionality (2.7") and it's an idiotic 16:9 ratio, so your actual screen size is 2.4" at a dot count that isn't really better than the PL1 (and worse than the PL2). It's brushed metal-alike with no grip, so it won't be pleasant to hold. Due to the protrusion of the lens mount, it's actually deeper than the P3.

    It seems to be one of those things where the spec sheet beats out reality.
  15. pxpaulx

    pxpaulx Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 19, 2010
    Real Name:
    I definitely see where looking at the new '3' series of cameras from the e-pl2 perspective it most certainly does look more like an upgrade to the e-pl2 than line than the e-p2. I think that is more a product of just how close the e-pl2 was on feature set to the e-p2. I think for 95% of buyers, when the e-pl2 was released there wasn't any real clear reason to purchase the e-p2 - what did the higher model offer, aside from another dial, a couple of digital filters and a different (somewhat better) build quality (though not necessarily better form factor)?

    While the e-pl1 was clearly distinguished with no mode dials, smaller/lower res screen, obviously lower build quality and probably several more points, the e-pl2 was so close to the top tier that it only makes sense to look at the e-p3 and say hey, that looks like an upgrade to this model line! The reality is in the end ambiguous as Olympus has chosen to differentiate the models on completely arbitrary design elements, while retaining some of the most basic elements such as sensor/AF speed that most manufacturers would typically choose to make a camera model differentiation. It is still kind of puzzling! The top body should simply offer everything, the ones below it less and less, why they chose otherwise is strange to me!
  16. Ray Sachs

    Ray Sachs Super Moderator

    Apr 17, 2010
    Near Philadephila
    Except for those of us for whom it's far MORE useful than an articulating screen! I had a GH2 and never used the articulating screen after trying it awhile. I had a Nex and used the tilting screen CONSTANTLY. Those of you who like articulated screens have about a half zillion to choose from. Those of us who like tilting screens have approximately TWO. That screen isthe one reason I might replace my ep3 with an epl3. And I LOVE the ep3 - it's everything I've wanted in an m43 camera except the tilting screen. I like it so much I'll probably keep it instead of the epl3, but the tilt screen makes it a tough call.

    • Like Like x 1
  17. RT_Panther

    RT_Panther Mu-43 Legend

    May 4, 2011
    And since you pointed out this is in the Olympus community (note your previous comment) now amuses you?

    And yes, I am new around here :smile:
  18. starlabs

    starlabs Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Sep 30, 2010
    Los Angeles
    After having bought a GF2 on a whim due to the UniquePhoto deal a few weeks ago, "online enthusiast" whining has zero credibility with me. The GF2 is a great camera. The touchscreen implementation is very well done.

    I think Olympus' direction is fine. They're a smaller company and can't afford big flops, so they move slowly and methodically.

    I will agree I think their E-PL3 and E-P3 models are priced too high (-$100 would be more sensible). Also I think all their models should have touchscreen controls. Guess that'll have to wait until E-PL4 and E-PM2 lol
  19. kahren

    kahren Mu-43 Regular

    Mar 21, 2010
    th e-p3 and the e-pl3 should have been one camera, pop up flash (bounce) , TILT SCREEN, and add on evf (a built in one would be even better) would be all great features in one camera. the e-pl3 will loose a sale from me not offering both the evf and flash being able to be used at the same time, its really quite sad.
  20. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    I'm actually excited to get the E-PM1. I prefer Panasonic for overall usability, but I still want a body with IBIS, but I don't want to pay the premium prices of the other top tier cameras. If the E-PM1 comes at a decent price point, I'm definitely going to pick one up.