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PEN lineup "revolution"?

Discussion in 'Micro 4/3 News and Rumors' started by DeeJayK, Jun 7, 2012.

  1. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Just saw this post from everyone's favorite rumors site that seems to indicate that Olympus is going to streamline their PEN offerings and make the differences more "obvious". My initial thought after reading that was that the "PEN Lite" lineup would be eliminated, leaving the "PEN Mini" and the "PEN".

    However the next sentence states that "Olympus were surprised by the huge E-PL3 sales". This seems to run counter to what I've seen from users of this forum who seem to have overwhelmingly chosen the E-PM1 over the E-PL3. Given the current (US) price structure, the E-PL3 doesn't seem to be well positioned. Is the E-PL3 selling like hotcakes in Asia?

    What do you think the coming "revolution" for the PEN lineup means?
  2. dixeyk

    dixeyk Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 9, 2010
    While it has been great for consumers, I have always thought that Olympus' habit of bringing out a less expensive/full featured camera like the E-PL line couldn't have been good for the sales of their flagship E-P line. Given how popular the E-M5 has been I coud see them eliminating the E-P line and keep the E-PL and E-PM1 lines. That would differentiate their products a little more clearly. I'm not saying I agree with something like that but it wouldn't surprise me at all. The PEN brand would emphasize small size and be more consumer friendly in much the way Panasonic has changed their GF cameras between the GF1 and the GF5. The EM line might get expanded so that the hole left by the E-P3 is filled by a slightly scaled back version of the E-M5.

    Just my 2 cents.
  3. KVG

    KVG Banned User

    May 10, 2011
    yyc(Calgary, AB)
    Kelly Gibbons
    Sounds like a good move.
  4. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    The thought of eliminating the E-Px line hadn't occurred to me, but I guess that would make sense in light of the introduction of the OM-D. I'd hate to see that occur, but I agree that would provide more differentiation in their lineup.
  5. applemint

    applemint Mu-43 Veteran

    Jan 24, 2012
    Would make sense to streamline down to 2 pen models instead of 3 - the E-PM1, E-PL3 and E-P3 are all a bit too similar in terms of features. (The only real difference between the E-PM1 and the E-PL3 is the tilt screen and a couple more buttons). Especially now there is the Em-5/OMD as well. EM-5 sensor in a Pen with the touch screen of the E-P3 but articulated like the E-PL3/Nex screens would be nice. :2thumbs:

    Maybe they will have one model with a built in EVF and one compact (E-PM1/E-PL3/GF3 style) model, catering both for p&s upgraders and those switching from a dslr?
  6. Promit

    Promit Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 6, 2011
    Baltimore, MD
    Promit Roy
    Massage an E-PL3 a little bit (larger screen with touch, better build, revised sensor), charge an extra hundred bucks, drop the E-P, and you've got a solid contender for a camera at US 800. Maybe even 700. Leave the mini, brand em however you want, and you've got two steps of consumer PENs before getting to the OM-D lineup. Makes sense to me.
    • Like Like x 2
  7. supermaxv

    supermaxv Mu-43 Veteran

    Sep 20, 2011
    I hope at least the spirit of the E-Px line does not disappear. The E-P3 appeals to me so much more than a E-PL3 or E-PM; there is still a market for people like me who will want a higher end model without a EVF.
    • Like Like x 2
  8. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    I think you're right about the integration of the EPL and EP lines. I can really see them do that. The problem with EP now is that a new model, if priced same as EP3 before, would be more expensive that EM5 with fewer features, if you have to also buy a viewfinder separately. Sure, some people might still go for it because they really want that rectangular forum factor, but for most people I think it would be a really glaring inequity . I don't know if they would want to underprice EP either. That would dilute the brand name.
    Maybe the EPL4 will just get beefed up and fancified a bit and that's all. 16mp sensor for the EPL4, and the 12mp GF5 sensor for the EPM2.
  9. AlexH

    AlexH Mu-43 Veteran

    Mar 27, 2012
    Arkansas, U.S.
    I hope the spirit of the E-Px continues too. I'd love a beefed up E-Px. Well, I'll say this much, Olympus has my attention, I'll be holding off any new camera purchase until I know what they are bringing to the dance.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. LovinTheEP2

    LovinTheEP2 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 15, 2011
    If the ZX-1 goes to a 1" sensor. I'd say drop the mini and merge the EPL and EPx into 1 cam. Leaving..

    New Line-up would look sweet if it were:

    E-X (if it's in the works); Flagship

    OM-D E-M5 (weather sealed, EVF)

    PEN EP-5 (non weather sealed, no builtin EVF, OM-D Sensor, EM-5 screen, built-in flash, hopefully 5-axis IBIS)

    Sell the EP-5 at about $750 with kit lens

    I'd scoop the EP-5 in a second. Even though Olympus may be surprised at the sales numbers for the the PEN lite variant, in my opinion it has more to do with the price point and rear screen then anything else... hopefully, they get that and redo the new EP-X accordingly.
  11. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I could see them ditching the E-Px line, removing the accessory port and hotshoe from the E-PMx line and having that be the entry level camera, leaving the E-PLx line relatively unchanged for enthusiasts that may want an accessory port and then having the OM-D with a built in viewfinder. That would clearly differentiate the three cameras. I'm not saying that this is what I would like to see, just that I could see it happening. If that were the case I would expect to see the XZ-2 be released without an accessory port as well.
  12. crsnydertx

    crsnydertx Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 31, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Certainly glad I got my XZ-1 then. Tie-breaker was ability to use VF2.
  13. Luke

    Luke Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Jul 30, 2010
    Milwaukee, WI
    If the E-P line goes away, it would be nothing less than a tragedy. I know it might have to get dumbed down to not compete with the E-M5 line, but it's too great a body to let it disappear.
    • Like Like x 2
  14. Steven

    Steven Mu-43 All-Pro

    May 25, 2012
    that's the thing - this kind of pricing would force EPL4 out of the line-up. EPL3 was 700 when released, wasnt it? there's only room for 2 models now below EM5 it seems. otherwise it might get crowded :) 
  15. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    When you think about it, it really does make sense - it would mirror the Panasonic lineup - a small, beginner friendly camera with built in flash and no accessory port (E-PMx/GF5), an enthusiast camera with a viewfinder/accessory port (E-PLx/GX1) and a built in viewfinder, mini DSLR body line (OM-D/G3/GH2)
    • Like Like x 1
  16. DeeJayK

    DeeJayK Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Feb 8, 2011
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Except that I would argue that Panny's "G" series (G1, G2, G3) most closely tracks Oly's PEN series (E-P1, E-P2, E-P3). Panasonic's got four product lines, if this rumor is to be believed and Oly is intending to eliminate one line, then that leaves them with just three: Mini, PEN/Lite, and OM-D.
  17. Ryan

    Ryan Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 21, 2011
    I highly doubt they would nip the e-p3 successor, it is the flagship pen. Im sure oly knows many of the user base are previous pen users thus having a viewfinder ready to use with the new line. I dont think they would remove the port from later models as its needed for some accessories also. I can see them morphing the e-pm and e-pl series however and morphing some features of the e-pl into the e-p
  18. WT21

    WT21 Super Moderator Subscribing Member

    Feb 19, 2010
    I'm done being an internet forums airmchair product manager. Having been an actual product manager in high-tech, and dealing with the fact that everyone fancies themselves a product manager, I'll pass on another round of "what I think is needed is..."

    But I will say this -- the fact that there's talk about refreshing the Pen line in September gives me hope for a Pen with the OMD sensor. I need a second camera and am purposely just getting another low-cost EPM1, to minimize the depreciation. I'd really like two bodies with the new sensor -- an EPM2 with either an EP4 or OMD, preferring the pen, but going for the one with the in-built EVF in either case.

    What they CHOOSE to build, or should build, or how they respond to competitor XYZ, I'll let others hash out, but I'm just loving that the line will be refreshed, and maybe, just maybe, I'll get that new sensor after all :) 
    • Like Like x 4
  19. SRHEdD

    SRHEdD Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Feb 24, 2011
    Viera, Florida USA
    I tend to agree, but it has made me (probably) hold off on an E-P3 until I see the next entry. I prefer the E-P3 over the OM-D, but would love an upgraded E-P4 even without a viewfinder.
  20. ean10775

    ean10775 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jan 31, 2011
    Cleveland, Ohio
    I would argue that the GF1/GX1 most closely tracks the E-Px line. The G1/G2/G3 would be like an OM-D E-M5 Lite. The only reason I figure they'll do away with the E-Px line is because the inital pricing of all the E-Px cameras have been so close to what the E-M5 is and the rumour mentioned that Olympus was so pleased with the E-PL3 (which frankly is a surprise to me as I didn't realise they were selling so well).
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