Olympus PEN E-PL3

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Olympus Pen E-PL3
Olympus PEN E-PL3.jpg
A black Olympus PEN E-PL3 with the standard flash attachment and 14-42mm lens fitted
TypeMicro Four Thirds, interchangeable lens camera
LensMicro Four Thirds System mount
SensorFour Thirds System 17.30 × 13.00 mm Live MOS
Maximum resolution4032×3024 (12.3 megapixels)
ASA/ISO rangeISO 200–12800
StorageSecure Digital card; SDHC; SDXC
Focus modesSingle, continuous, manual
Focus areas35 area contrast detect auto-focus, selectable
Exposure modesProgram, shutter-priority, aperture-priority, manual
Exposure meteringDigital ESP metering, Centre weighted average metering, Spot metering
Metering modesTTL ESP multi patterned (324-area multi pattern metering), Center-weighted average, Spot (1%)
FlashNo built-in flash, but has Clip-on flash included, TTL, GN 10m equivalent (ISO200 · m); hotshoe for external flash attachment
Shutter1/4,000 to 60 s, up to 30 minutes bulb
Continuous shooting4.1 frames/s (5.5 frames/s in case of "I.S. OFF"
Viewfinderlive preview, optional electronic viewfinder VF-2; optional electronic viewfinder VF-3; optional optical viewfinder VF-1
Rear LCD monitor3" 460,000 pixel TFT LCD on screen with live preview
BatteryOlympus BLS-5 Lithium-ion battery
Dimensions109.5 × 63.7 × 37.3 mm (4.31" × 2.51" × 1.47")
Weight265 g (9.3 oz) (body only) 313 g (11.0 oz) (body, battery and SD memory card)

The Olympus PEN E-PL3 announced on June 30, 2011[1] is Olympus Corporation's seventh camera that adheres to the Micro Four Thirds (MFT) system design standard. The E-PL3 succeeds the Olympus PEN E-PL2, and was announced in concert with two other models, the Olympus PEN E-P3 (the flagship version), and the Olympus PEN E-PM1 (a new "Mini" version of the PEN camera line with similar features to the E-PL3). The E-PL3 is commonly said to be the "Lite" (less full featured) version of the E-P3, much as the E-PL1 and E-PL2 were "Lite" versions of the E-P1 and E-P2, respectively.


The E-PL3 addresses some of the concerns that critics had about previous PEN models, notably, slow handling, due to slow autofocus speed and difficulty seeing the LCD panel under certain (e.g., bright, sunny) conditions.

The E-PL3 increases autofocus speed through use of a 120 Hz refresh rate for its sensor, similar to the technology used in the recently released Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 and G3 cameras. Olympus claims, based on in-house testing, that the E-PL3, along with its E-PM1 cousin, have similar characteristics to the flagship E-P3, which according to Olympus has the world's fastest autofocus speed of any camera as of the product announcement date.[2] The benefits of the 120 Hz refresh rate also provides the ability for continuous autofocus tracking during bursts of exposures, a faster shutter response (less lag) and less blackout time between exposures.

The E-PL3 lacks the E-P3 capacitive touchscreen for creative camera control, and the E-P3 OLED type display that is supposed to vastly improve performance in sunny conditions, and off-angle viewing. Instead, the E-PL3 has a tiltable LCD, which allows easy above the head, waist level, or low off the ground viewing. The E-PL3 continues with the proprietary Accessory Port, a power and communication port, which allows the use of various accessories, such as an external stereo microphone for HD video recording, LED macro lights, and a bluetooth communications adapter. The accessory port continues to be compatible with the high resolution, optional hotshoe mounted VF-2 electronic viewfinder (EVF).

The VF-2 had a flip angle eyepiece, allowing viewing from 0–90 degrees. The VF-2 had been criticized for being very expensive and for not having a locking device, with some users reporting easy dislodgement of the VF-2 from the hotshoe. To address these criticisms, in July 2011, Olympus announced the introduction of an optional VF-3 EVF, which has a lower resolution and a locking device.

Differences over Olympus PEN E-P1[edit]

  • Addition of an Accessory Port that can be used for an electronic viewfinder,external microphone or external flash
  • Two new Art filters-simulating Diorama and Cross process in camera
  • Black finish widely available
  • Auto focus tracking
  • Colour boosting function named i-Enhance

Specifications not in the infobox[edit]

See also[edit]

Micro Four Thirds Camera introduction roadmap[edit]

Item Model Sensor Electronic View Finder (EVF) Announced
1 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.1 mp effective) EVF; 1.4x magnification; 1.44M dots 2008, October[4]
2 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 4:3; 3:2; 16:9 (multi-aspect); 14.0 mp (12.1 mp effect) EVF; 1.4x mag; 1.44M dots 2009, April[5]
3 Olympus PEN E-P1 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) optional hotshoe optical VF-1; 65 degree AOV 2009, July[6]
4 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF1 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.1 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF LVF1; 1.04x mag; 202K dots 2009, September[7]
5 Olympus PEN E-P2 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2009, November[8]
6 Olympus PEN E-PL1 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2010, February[9]
7 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G10 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.1 mp effect) EVF; 1.04x magnification; 202K dots 2010, March[10]
8 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G2 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.1 mp effect) EVF; 1.4x mag; 1.44M dots 2010, March[11]
9 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 4:3; 3:2; 16:9 (multi-aspect); 18.3 mp (16.0 mp effect) EVF; 1.42x mag; 1.53M dots 2010, September[12]
10 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF2 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.1 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF; 1.04x mag; 202K dots 2010, November[13]
11 Olympus PEN E-PL1s 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2010, November[14]
12 Olympus PEN E-PL2 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2011, January[15]
13 Panasonic Lumix DMC-G3 4:3 / 16.6 mp (15.8 mp effect) EVF; 1.4x mag; 1.44M dots 2011, May[16]
14 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GF3 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.1 mp effect) N/A 2011, June[17]
15 Olympus PEN E-P3 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2011, June[18]
16 Olympus PEN E-PL3 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2011, June[19]
17 Olympus PEN E-PM1 4:3 / 13.1 mp (12.3 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF VF-2; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2011, June[20]
18 Panasonic Lumix DMC-GX1 4:3 / 16.6 mp (16.0 mp effect) opt hotshoe EVF LVF2; 1.4x mag; 1.44M dots 2011, November[21]
19 Olympus OM-D E-M5 4:3 / 16.9 mp (16.1 mp effect)[22] EVF; 1.15x mag; 1.44M dots 2012, February[23]


  1. ^ "Olympus PEN E-P3 announced and previewed: Digital Photography Review". Dpreview.com. 30 June 2011. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
  2. ^ "OLYMPUS | News Release: "OLYMPUS PEN E-P3" New generation System Camera". Olympus-global.com. Retrieved 14 October 2011.
  3. ^ Olympus Imaging India Private Limited. "E-PL3 Specs". olympus-imaging.co.in. Retrieved 23 March 2012.
  4. ^ "Panasonic Lumix DMC-G1: World's Smallest and Lightest Digital Interchangeable Lens Camera*" (Press release). Archived from the original on 28 July 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  5. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/gh1.html#1
  6. ^ http://www.dpreview.com/news/0906/09061601olympusep1.asp
  7. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/dmc_gf1.html#1
  8. ^ http://www.dpreview.com/news/0911/09110501olympusep2.asp
  9. ^ "Olympus unveils the affordable Pen". Digital Photography Review. 3 February 2010. Retrieved 3 February 2010.
  10. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/g2g10.html#2
  11. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/g2g10.html#1
  12. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/gh2.html
  13. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/gf2.html
  14. ^ http://olympus-imaging.jp/product/dslr/epl1s/index.html
  15. ^ http://www.dpreview.com/news/1101/11010622olympusepl2.asp
  16. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/g3.html
  17. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/popup/pressrelease/gf3.html
  18. ^ http://www.olympus-global.com/en/news/2011a/nr110630ep3e.html
  19. ^ http://www.olympus-global.com/en/news/2011a/nr110630epl3e.html
  20. ^ http://www.olympus-global.com/en/news/2011a/nr110630epm1e.html
  21. ^ http://panasonic.net/avc/lumix/systemcamera/gms/gx1/index.html
  22. ^ http://www.dpreview.com/news/2012/02/08/Olympus_OM-D_E-M5_announced
  23. ^ http://www.olympus-global.com/en/news/2012a/nr120208em5e.html

External links[edit]

Media related to Olympus E-PL3 at Wikimedia Commons

Preceded by
Olympus PEN E-PL2
Olympus PEN E-PL3 Micro Four Thirds System Camera
Autumn 2011–present
Succeeded by
Olympus PEN E-PL5