1. Welcome to Mu-43.com—a friendly Micro 4/3 camera & photography discussion forum!

    If you are thinking of buying a camera or need help with your photos, you will find our forum members full of advice! Click here to join for free!

Thinking of swapping my Pen-F for an E-M10ii

Discussion in 'Olympus Cameras' started by pdk42, Jan 5, 2018.

  1. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    I'm in NYC in a week and I've noticed that the E-M10ii is on a good deal at B&H. I've always liked the E-M10ii; it seems to deliver a lot of camera in a small package for a good price. My main camera is the E-M1ii but I have a Pen-F too that I use with the small primes, often for street shooting. I like the Pen a lot, but...

    - I don't like the fold-out screen for street - the tilt only is much better for shooting from the hip

    - I don't shoot jpeg and so never use "the knob"

    - I don't use the exp comp dial (too stiff to operate with the camera to the eye)

    So, it might make sense to "downgrade" to the E-M10ii. Of course, I'll lose the better IBIS and a few features like lens info, but not a lot. I'll also step back to a 16Mp sensor.

    Am I mad? Thoughts?
  2. Jonathan F/2

    Jonathan F/2 Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Aug 10, 2011
    Los Angeles, USA
    Your call. The Pen-F is an awesome camera, but the swing out LCD can be a bit of hassle if you're street shooting. I don't know if I'd give up my Pen-F for an E-M10 II though, maybe just add it to your collection?
  3. nstelemark

    nstelemark Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    May 28, 2013
    Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada
    Pretty much yes you are :drinks:.

    But for me the EC dial and the "art" dial are pretty key to the PenF experience. And yes I agree it would be a better body with a tilt screen IMO.

    I bought my PenF on a whim (used) pretty much. It is now my favourite body.
  4. TNcasual

    TNcasual Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Dec 2, 2014
    Knoxville, TN
    I'll trade my E-M10i for your Pen-F, straight up! ;) 
    • Funny Funny x 4
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. LucDeSchepper

    LucDeSchepper Mu-43 Veteran

    Aug 8, 2014
    Luc de Schepper
    In my experience the E-M10II especially when combined with the ECG-3 grip is ergonomically superior to the Pen-F but this aspect is very personal so try before you buy. I have had excellent 60x90cm and 50x100cm prints made from 16mp E-M10II images so I wouldn't worry about that.
    • Like Like x 2
  6. Drdave944

    Drdave944 Mu-43 All-Pro Subscribing Member

    Feb 2, 2012
    This kind of transaction will not be profitable. I too use the Pen F and agree that it is quirky. I have loved playing around with the art filters. It is a special camera. I will not give it up. I will adapt to it. My biggest complaint is that it is hard to remove the card from the camera as it is jammed up close between the battery door and the battery. It is almost impossible to remove ,especially if you have the optional base attached.,which itself is always coming loose. The tripod screw hole also obstructs any large lens especially if you attach a tripod. You are also always inadvertently changing the exposure compensation because the wheel sticks out of the right side of the camera. The flip out screen can be used to take sneaky side view shots,so is actually better for cadids than the tilt screen in some ways. Several people have commented on the camera and don't believe it is a digital camera at all. Of course to each his own is the rule.
  7. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    I've met Paul and he is, indeed, quite mad...but in the best of ways! lol


    For me it would come down to which one would I enjoy using more based on the style that you shoot. I'm really into shooting with adapted and manual focus lenses, so having the section to fill in manual lens info is great for me. I've not really used the EM10ii, but I've seen a lot of the work that @LucDeSchepper@LucDeSchepper has done with his and it is not a camera that should be dismissed because of where it sits in the lineup or its cost. I often wonder when I shoot with the EM5ii if I'll miss having the 20mp of the PEN-F, but when I look at the files...the 16mp sensor is still pretty darn good, even by today's standards.

    If the EM10ii makes more sense to you, and the PEN-F doesn't, then I'd sell the PEN-F and buy an EM10ii and bank the extra cash or put it toward another lens you might want. Life's too short, you work too hard to not get what you want!!
    • Agree Agree x 1
  8. SLOtographer

    SLOtographer Mu-43 Regular Subscribing Member

    Sep 1, 2013
    I'd say try it out or rent it and see. Can't really go wrong. Perhaps another option is to try the GX85?
  9. retiredfromlife

    retiredfromlife Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 15, 2016
    Sydney, Australia
    Even though I do not own a PenF, I would hate to give one up if I had one
  10. AaronE

    AaronE Mu-43 Veteran

    May 23, 2013
    I have a Pen-f and a EM5 Mk I that has the tilt up screen. The tilt up is nice for street especially using the touch screen to trip the shutter. That said, I do really like the Pen-f. The increased resolution is noticeable even though the experts say it is negligible. The nice thing about the screen on the Pen-f is that you can flip in inward and protect the screen. I mostly shoot through the view finder. Only use the screen when mounted on a tripod. The art dials are fun but I have better luck with the RAW images. I have the Olympus grip and it really makes a difference. I do keep a pair of small needle nose pliers at my desk for removing the card.

    If you really want a great street camera I would get a used or new, Ricoh GR. Better image quality than the Pen-f or an EM10 ii in a smaller package for less money.
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2018
  11. Will Focus

    Will Focus Mu-43 All-Pro

    The only digital camera I have or have had has been the em10ii. I can't imagine life without it.
    Although, I am waiting for the submersible em10 IV with the 36 mp sensor and built in ATM. But only if it's in black.

    All kidding aside, the em10ii has been my only digital camera, so I can't fairly compare it's function to other models but I can tell you that other than the lack of weather sealing, which after being out in sub zero weather and snowstorms I am beginning to question the necessity of anyway, it's been more than what I expected going in. I think lenses and technique are of much bigger importance than the differences in camera bodies today, in general. Ergonomically, for me, the em10ii feels like my old Nikon FE2. I love the placement of the dials and the overall feel of the camera. I find the viewfinder easy to use, and I use glasses so that was important to me. For composition I almost never use the screen. I use the screen to monitor change in functions and review images.

    The only downside I have run up against was the tripod socket. I couldn't mount the camera firmly on a tripod baseplate with the 73-300 attached, for example. But, for 30 bucks, or however much it was, I added an aftermarket grip which works wonderfully. It successfully raised the profile of the camera to allow the lens barrel to clear. It never comes off the camera as it has an access for the battery compartment built in.

    I like the camera so much I have been considering getting a second one before all the new ones are gone.

    But then again, I've never even held a Pen F, much less used one.... so you have that.
    • Like Like x 2
  12. Ben Bonin

    Ben Bonin Mu-43 Rookie

    Oct 13, 2017
    I've been shooting an Em10ii for a couple years now, with the optional external grip pretty much permanently attached. My sense is that I would probably find the ergonomics of the Pen-F to be problematic, especially with anything bigger than one of the f1.8 primes. But damn it's a sexy camera. And the 20MP sensor, while not a huge jump in IQ, is definitely a plus. I understand your issue with the articulating screen though; besides having to swing it out to take advantage of the tilt, they always feel less-than-robust to me.

    There's currently an original film Pen on display at the National Geographic Museum in DC (I believe used on a mountaineering expedition). I'm a little ashamed to admit that seeing it had me checking Pen-F prices on my phone while still walking the exhibit :) 

    New Em10ii's are going for 450US these days, and around three bills or less on the used market. You would definitely be losing out on the trade; I would hold on to the Pen-F and -- if you really think you need it -- try to find a good deal on the Em10ii as a third camera.
  13. longviewer

    longviewer Mu-43 Top Veteran Subscribing Member

    Oct 22, 2015
    SW Washington (Longview area)
    Jim R
    I cannot imagine owning a third camera myself - I would repurchase a PenF used if I felt a serious mistake had been made.

    You make being mad sound like a bug not a feature.. ;) 
  14. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Thanks Andrew - I think being mad helps me get through the day :) 
    • Like Like x 1
    • Agree Agree x 1
  15. pdk42

    pdk42 One of the "Eh?" team

    Jan 11, 2013
    Leamington Spa, UK
    Thanks to all - I think I'll get the E-M10ii anyhow and then make a decision on the Pen once I've had a chance to evaluate them side by side.
    • Like Like x 1
  16. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    I'm pretty sure it helps us all!
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  17. Love my E-M10 Mk2 but I'm going through a period of severe GAS and upgrading to an E-M5 Mk2. Thought about the Pen-F but really want WR.
  18. Christop82

    Christop82 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Sep 10, 2016
    I have a 10ii and really like it. I got it refurbished from Olympus at a great price. I just don't believe paying triple for the pen, or quadruple for the 1ii is worth the slight improvements in sensor and ibis. If I'm going to pay over $1000 for a body, it's probably going to be full frame. I just bought a used A7 for less than a used pen. If I like it like it, I may upgrade to the A7II or the A7s and keep my 10ii as my compact kit.
    I'm not a professional photographer and primarily shoot jpeg for convenience, so I'm sure my opinion may vary from one who's making money with their camera.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2018
  19. Pecos

    Pecos Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Jan 20, 2013
    The Natural State
    I have the Pen F and the original EM5, used with grip. The older camera feels better, but the Pen F has more features that enable one's making very different looking shots. Yes, I shoot JPEG mostly. The flip-out screen is an annoyance sometimes, but I do like that I can fold it in against the body. The art filters are easier to get to - I like Soft Focus, Key Line, and Dramatic Tone (esp for clouds). The B&W Mode 2 is fantastic - looks like Tri-X and you can control the amount of grain.
    I'll get a grip for the Pen F and expect it'll feel better in hand.
    If I were you I'd hang on to the Pen F.
  20. gryphon1911

    gryphon1911 Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Mar 13, 2014
    Central Ohio, USA
    From my understanding, the original A7 was a great performed in I, but had some performance issues in the AF department. If it turns out that you like the A7, then I could see wanting to upgrade.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.