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Olympus PEN E-PL2

alaTest has collected and analyzed 312 reviews from magazines and websites. Reviewers really like the screen and performance. The image quality and usability also get good views. Some have doubts about the energy efficiency and memory. There are mixed reviews on the zoom and value for money.

portability, usability, image quality, performance, screen

viewfinder, features, memory, energy

We analyzed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Compact System Cameras the Olympus PEN E-PL2 is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 84/100 = Very good quality.

Review analysis

(Based on 312 reviews)

Expert Reviews  

User Reviews  

Showing 122 review(s)

Expert Reviews User Reviews
Showing 1 - 10 of 122 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (100)

Expert review by:

Olympus E-PL2


Back in September of 2008, Olympus and Panasonic announced the Micro Four Thirds standard. The companies promised to produce interchangeable-lens cameras that would deliver D-SLR-quality speed and images, but in smaller-than-D-SLR bodies. Panasonic's...

Beautiful image quality. Compact body. Large image sensor. Digital accessories port and hotshoe. Dual menu system tailored toward either beginners or seasoned photographers. Silent autofocus during video recording with kit lens

Low light performance isn't as good as cameras with APS-C-size image sensors. Proprietary USB port

The Olympus E-PL2 is the least-expensive compact interchangeable-lens camera you can buy. And while it offers very good image quality, some same-price cameras use even larger image sensors and deliver better low-light performance.

Expert review by:

Olympus Pen E-PL2


Olympus is putting a lot of energy into its Micro Four Thirds product line, and the Olympus Pen E-PL2 interchangeable-lens camera demonstrates that the company has no plans to rest on its laurels.

Ergonomically comfortable, with textured hand grip ; Improved 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 Zuiko MSC zoom kit lens ; In-body image stabilization ; Manual exposure and art filters in movie controls ; Accessory Port 2 for expanded functionality ; Built-in wireless...

No built-in external mic jack ; Complex menu system ; Limited to AVI movie format (Motion JPEG OpenDML)

The Olympus E-PL2 is a compact, versatile camera that will please travelers or anyone who wants to take great pictures without lugging around pounds of gear.

Expert review by:

Olympus E-PL2 (with 14-42mm lens, Silver)


For its E-PL2, Olympus makes some design and feature enhancements, as well as performance tweaks, to its PEN E-PL1 Micro Four Thirds camera. The result is a noticeably better camera, delivering better photo quality and an improved shooting experience...

The E-PL2 delivers excellent photo quality, with an extremely customizable interface

Performance has improved, but the E-PL2 still couldn't be classified as fast overall

A great interchangeable-lens model if you're looking for better photo quality and/or a more advanced feature set than your current point-and-shoot offers, the Olympus PEN E-PL2 still doesn't satisfy for photographing active kids and pets.


Expert review by:

Olympus E-PL2 Review


Olympus continues to produce some of the best EVIL cameras on the market. The E-PL2 is a great improvement over the E-PL1, which is still a great camera in itself. The new additions are very welcomed, and will surly add to the already high appeal of...

Nice, well-built feel in your hands ; Stylish aluminum body comes in four colors: Black, White, Red, and Silver ; Produces beautiful 12-megapixel images ; Records good quality 720p HD video ; Great High ISO performance up to ISO 3200 ; Excellent...

ISO 6400 shows a great deal of luminous noise throughout the photograph ; No 1080p HD video option

Olympus continues to produce some of the best EVIL cameras on the market. The E-PL2 is a great improvement over the E-PL1, which is still a great camera in itself. The new additions are very welcomed, and will surly add to the already high appeal of...


Expert review by:

Olympus E-PL2 Review


The Micro Four Thirds system turned two years old last October, and a lot has happened since Panasonic debuted the DSLR-inspired, but mirrorless Lumix DMC-G1. What was then a brand new system has had time to mature, and mirrorless interchangeable lens...

Good resolution and detail at base ISO ; Compact camera/kit lens package ; Nice screen with good resolution (460K dots) ; Good build quality and handling ; Generally responsive and snappy operation ; Reliable metering ; Good AF speed with kit lens ;...

Exposure control with the rear dial not great if you change settings frequently ; Inefficient movie format results in very large file sizes ; No orientation sensor means having to rotate every portrait image manually ; Menu system can be a little...

If you frequently change your exposure settings or shoot a lot in low light you might want to try the E-PL2 out before you commit to a purchase but for everyone else the Olympus is a great combination of image quality and portability.


Expert review by:

Olympus PEN E-PL2


The latest model in Olympus' Micro Four Thirds PEN line up continues to appeal to novices ready for a more technical experience. Like the E-PL1, the E-PL2 serves as a stepping stone for photographers who have mastered the pocket point-and-shoot, but...

Stylish body and nice size ; Low-noise images ; Quality upgrades for the built-in filters and scene selectors ; iAuto delivers impressive results

Nearly as expensive as a capable DSLR ; No view finder ; Could be underwhelming for experts, overwhelming for beginners

The E-PL2 lives up to its predecessor’s standards as Olympus continues to improve on its PEN series.

Expert review by:

Next-Gen Olympus PEN Hits the Micro Four Thirds Sweet S...


The fourth-generation Olympus PEN E-PL2, with its svelte metal/composite body, gorgeous high-resolution 3 LCD viewfinder, and enhanced low-light performance, is a welcome upgrade to the E-PL1 and viable alternative the more expensive E-P2.

Beautiful, high-resolution 3-inch LCD. Enhanced low-light performance (ISO 6400) and shutter speed (4000). Sturdy, solid construction with a pleasing feel in the hand. Just begs for classic, fast Leica glass. Good value for the price, especially...

Kit lens has a funky retractable barrel. PENPal only works on Android and Windows 7 mobiles, so iOS junkies are out of luck. Back of case is plastic, although it's hard to tell

Expert review by:

Olympus PEN E-PL2 Digital Camera Review


The Olympus E-PL2 is an update to the PEN E-PL1, released in 2009 as the company's latest entry into the Micro Four Thirds market. The upgrades on this new model are relatively minor: a wider ISO range, some minor design changes (including a port for a...

The Olympus E-PL2 is an update to the E-PL1 which was released last year. The upgrades on this new model are relatively minor: a wider ISO range, improved video shooting and some minor design changes. However, we found the E-PL1 to be a very decent...

Expert review by:

Olympus E-PL2 DSLR Camera Review


What follows is a quick overview of the video capabilities of the Olympus PEN E-PL2. Read our comprehensive analysis and testing results in greater detail at

In terms of video recording the Olympus E-PL2 was a disappointment. Its results in our bright light color and noise testing were subpar, its motion videos were not smooth, and the camera didn't handle very well in video mode. The bright spots for the...

Expert review by:

Olympus E-PL2


The fifth model in the Olympus Pen series is a much simplified version of last year's consumer mirrorless model, with a new lens and a no-nonsense design. Where the E-PL1 had a more modern, artistic appearance, the E-PL2 would fit in well with the...

Less flashy but more functional redesigned camera body handles like a comfortable DSLR rather than an awkward rangefinder ; Comfy, textured faux-leather handgrip ; Contrast detection based autofocus system functions much faster ...

Archaic menu system is confusing and unnecessarily complicated ; Live Guide II system should be easier to access and adjust, customize ; Shooting tips in Live Guide II suffer from bad translation ; Buttons are too small; no dedicated exterior...

Though I've admired Olympus' Pen-series compact system cameras in the past for their stylish designs and bounty of features, I didn't find them to be particularly enjoyable to shoot with. Until now. With the 12.3MP Olympus Pen E-PL2, the company has...

Product Specifications


Autofocus: Yes
Built-in Flash: Yes
Changeable Lens: Yes
Image Stabiliser:Electronical Image Stabiliser
Integrated GPS Module: No
Touchscreen: No
View Finder Type:LCD Monitor


Bluetooth: No
HDMI Interface: Yes
PictBridge: No
WiFi Connectivity: No

General Features

3D: No
Bridge Camera: No
Chip Type:Live MOS
Product Type:Compact Camera
Sensor Size:17.3 x 13.0 mm
SLR / Compact:Compact Camera


Longest Shutter Speed in s:60
Shortest Shutter Speed in s:1/4000


Compact Flash Card: No
Memory Stick / Memory Stick Pro: No
Memory Stick Duo / Duo Pro: No
Memory Type:External
Micro Drive: No
Multimedia Card: No
SDXC Card: Yes
Secure Digital Card: Yes
Secure Digital High Capacity Card: Yes
XD Card: No

Power Supply

Battery Model:Olympus BLS-1
Battery Type:Olympus BLS-1


Aperture Priority: Yes
Face Detection Mode:Face Detection
Movie / Voice Recording:Movie + Voice
RAW Format: Yes
Serial Shot Mode: Yes
Shutter Priority: Yes