Pen and Pan question

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by TDP, Sep 20, 2012.

  1. TDP

    TDP Guest

    Ok I've got a seriously dumb question, is there logic behind the Pen naming convention of Olympus m43 cameras? Also, how about Panasonics G naming convention?

    I'm from the DLSR world of Canon and Nikon. We must be extra slow dummies because both manufactures keep it simple enough for us to understand.....less digits mean higher camera, Canon low numbers are better and Nikon high numbers are better.

    With all the new camera bodies coming out for both Panasonic and Olympus I'm trying to figure out which is which.

  2. Vivalo

    Vivalo Olympus Loser

    Nov 16, 2010
    For Olympus
    E-Mx > E-Px > E-PLx > E-PMx where x is the running number for version. Oly doesn´t use number 4 so for example after E-PL3 the newer model is E-PL5.

    For Panasonic
    GHx > Gx > GXx > GFx
    Panasonic G and GX series are about the same in performance. G series has EVF and larger grip.
  3. Vivalo

    Vivalo Olympus Loser

    Nov 16, 2010
    Olympus logic for the letters: E=Electronic? P=PEN L=Light M=Mini

    I´m not sure if Oly has ever officially announced this logic so this is only how I´ve understood the naming.
  4. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    Real Name:
    Just curious - does anyone know why Olympus doesn't use the number 4?
  5. Robstar1963

    Robstar1963 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 10, 2011
    Isle of Wight England UK
    Real Name:
    Robert (Rob)
    Olympus like Panasonic does not use the number 4 because of superstition
    In Japan the number 4 is considered to be or bring bad luck
    • Like Like x 1
  6. TDP

    TDP Guest

    In Chinese the sound of "4" sounds just like "death".
  7. drd1135

    drd1135 Zen Snapshooter

    Mar 17, 2011
    Southwest Virginia
    Real Name:
    Ah!! The same reason many buildings don't have a 13th floor. Didn't know that.
  8. goldenlight

    goldenlight Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 30, 2010
    Real Name:
    Considering how the last year has been for Olympus, they must have used "4" once too often in the past! Perhaps all their current difficulties stem from the OM4Ti!
  9. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 5, 2011
    Except, of course, that Olympus did use "4" for the OM-4 and OM-40. But yes, one form of the Japanese / Chinese character for four resemble and (in Japanese, at least) sounds similar to the word for death, and is frequently, though not consistently, avoided.
  10. Mikefellh

    Mikefellh Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jun 7, 2012
    Toronto, Canada
    Not just Japanese companies, but also companies who wish to sell products in Japan...for instance the British electronic organizer maker Psion also skipped "4" in their model numbers.

    There's been some really funny name blunders, like years ago the car Chevrolet Mexico Nova means "no go" (heard in a TV show).

    Just relax over the naming...if you look at the cameras in the different letter classes you can see the physical differences in the body style, and then look at the number to see what's newer.
  11. dhazeghi

    dhazeghi Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 6, 2010
    San Jose, CA
    Real Name:
    The E-P1 was the original Pen, and was upgraded to the E-P2. They then released a stripped down model as the E-PL1 (L = lite). The E-PL2 followed. With the next generation, they added an even lower-end tier, the E-PM1 (M = mini). The E-P3, E-PL3 and E-PM1 were all released around the same time. The E-M5 is their new higher end model, with a DSLR aesthetic rather than the 'rangefinder' one used by the Pen. The new E-PL5 and E-PM2 replace the E-PL3 and E-PM1 respectively. There hasn't been an indication yet whether the E-P3 will be replaced, or simply discontinued.

    For Panasonic, the G1 was their first DSLR-styled body (grip, built-in EVF). The GH1 was their video-oriented model. That pattern has continued straight though to the present. The GF1 was their Pen-like model (slim, no built-in EVF). They've gradually stripped down the GF2 and GF3, making them smaller and removing buttons and the hotshoe, to turn the GF into their entry-level series. The much later GX1 continued the GF1's original purpose and was oriented to enthusiasts.

    Hope that helps.

  12. ZephyrZ33

    ZephyrZ33 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Nov 18, 2010
    Southern California
    Appropriately marking the "death" of the OM series. :tongue:

    Here's just my own breakdown:

    E-M - "Electronic Maitani (original OM designer)" aka OM-D "Olympus Maitani Digital"
    E-P - "Electronic Pen" (standard)
    E-PL - "Electronic Pen-Light"
    E-PM - "Electronic Pen-Mini"

    GH - "G-Heavy"
    GX - "G-Xenogenesis" (Hybrid Pen-Fighter GF on roids)
    G - "G-Standard"
    GF - "G-Feather"
    • Like Like x 2
  13. greenarcher02

    greenarcher02 Mu-43 Veteran

    Feb 13, 2012
    Manila, Philippines
    Isn't the "standard" Pen already axed?
  14. meyerweb

    meyerweb Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Sep 5, 2011
    • Like Like x 2
  15. wreckless

    wreckless Mu-43 Regular

    Jan 15, 2011
    Real Name:

    Was wondering if I was the only person here that knows this.
  16. RevBob

    RevBob Super Moderator

    Jun 4, 2011
    NorthWestern PA
    Real Name:
    Nobody knows for sure, it may have been replaced by the OM series or it may show up in an E-P5 come Spring. I, for one, hope it sticks around. :smile:
  17. limpeh09

    limpeh09 Mu-43 Regular

    Sep 21, 2012
    Four in Chinese is dead or death. Maybe the Japanese feel the same.