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Olympus Pen E-P3 Compact System Camera - Black (Includes M.ZUIKO Digital 14 -42mm II R Lens)

by Olympus
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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  • World's quickest* FAST AF for cameras with interchangeable lenses. (*as of June 2011)
  • Innovative touch-sensitive OLED screen for more intuitive shooting and playback
  • 12.3 effective Megapixel High Speed Live MOS sensor
  • Enhance your creativity with Art Filters, Multi Exposure & Multi-aspect
  • Full HD Movie with stereo sound featuring depth of field and Art Filters
See more product details
Olympus EP-3 Accessories
Check out our range of Olympus EP-3 accessories including lenses, electronics viewfinders and cool carry case.

Product details

  • Product Dimensions: 3.4 x 12.2 x 6.9 cm ; 322 g
  • Boxed-product Weight: 1.4 Kg
  • Batteries 1 Lithium ion batteries required. (included)
  • Item model number: E-P3
  • ASIN: B0058G3YHM
  • Date first available at Amazon.co.uk: 30 Jun 2011
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 69,038 in Electronics (See Top 100 in Electronics)


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Product Description

Manufacturer's Description

The Olympus E-P3 Digital PEN: The breathtaking top-of-the-range PEN

New PEN flagship rewrites Compact System Camera rules, with its world-beating FAST AF (Frequency Acceleration Sensor Technology) the fastest* autofocus of any camera with interchangeable lenses, timeless metal design and state-of-the-art touch-sensitive OLED display, it's a genuine alternative to bulkier and more expensive SLRs.

Instant Classic

Pick up the new PEN and you realise you're holding a potential style icon. The craftsmen at Olympus have managed a rare feat, drawing on the charm of the golden era of camera design some 50 years ago to create a camera that will still turn heads 50 years from today. If their vision was to create a timeless classic, that's exactly what they've achieved.

The fastest AF system on a camera with interchangeable lenses
The fastest AF system on a camera with interchangeable lenses
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Instant AF

One of the PEN's most striking - and useful - characteristics is the sheer speed and versatility of the record-breaking autofocus. Driven by the new and powerful Olympus TruePic VI processor, the FAST AF focuses quicker* than any other camera with interchangeable lenses, giving PEN owners the very best chance of capturing fast-moving shots. What's more, it offers 35 separate focus points, spread over nearly the whole sensor, making it possible to focus on small subjects, no matter where they appear in the picture.

In low light conditions, the built-in AF Illuminator compensates for potential loss of accuracy while new AF tracking technology ensures subjects stay sharp even when they move in and out of the frame. Another potentially shot-saving bonus is Full Time AF – the focus is always active so the image is always in focus and the camera doesn't waste time focusing when the user applies pressure top the shutter release button.

Like the processors in computers, TruePic VI is essentially two units in one, with one half dedicated purely to the FAST AF and the other to image reproduction. The result is outstanding quality, colour and detail from the 12.3 Megapixel LIVE MOS sensor and with light sensitivity boosted to an impressive ISO 12800. TruePic VI also shortens the time taken between shots and noticeably reduces noise during movie recording.

High resolution touch-sensitive OLED
High resolution touch-sensitive OLED
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Instant Control

Unique to the flagship PEN is the three-inch, touchsensitive OLED display. It's not only intuitive and practical to use, but also delivers a superb, photoquality picture, regardless of ambient light conditions. Compared to similar LCD screens, an OLED display generates superior contrast, deeper blacks and a broader spectrum of colours. It is brighter, the angle of view is wider and it uses less power.

The PEN's display offers fingertip scrolling and enlarging of photos as well as control of the shutter release, AF points and the pop-up Live Guide - the celebrated PEN assistant that makes it easy for less experienced users to get crucial parameters such as aperture and depth of field exactly right. Even professionals will be glad to note that there's now direct access to Live Guide in P, S, M and A modes, if need be. Unlike with some of PEN's rivals, Live Guide is available for both movies and stills.

Addition of manual controls appeal to photo enthusiasts
Addition of manual controls appeal to photo enthusiasts
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But for most serious photographers, experimenting with settings is half the fun - and they don't want to scroll through endless menus to make their adjustments. That's why Olympus has incorporated two additional dials on the back of the PEN. With just their thumb, users can fine-tune aperture and exposure time in an instant - without having to switch between menu sections. The chosen settings appear bright and clear on the OLED screen, or in the optional electronic viewfinder. Fans of hands-on shooting will also love the three customisable buttons they can assign to their favourite functions. The buttons, dials and new FAST AF help users react quicker to spontaneous situations and capture fleeting scenes or fast-moving subjects before the opportunity is lost.

10 Art filters can be applied to stills or video
10 Art filters can be applied to stills or video
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Instant Art

A wide choice of creative Art Filters and effects is a bonus for ambitious users and pros alike. The PEN offers ten different filters for adding special effects without the hassle of computer software. Several of these can be combined with additional effects, such as new Starlight and White Edge. Users can choose from the Pop Art, Soft Focus, Pale & Light Colour, Light Tone, Grainy Film, Pinhole, Diorama, Cross Process, Gentle Sepia and Dramatic Tone Art Filters. All ten filters can be applied to both still shots and movies.

Instant Movies

The PEN records movies with a stereo soundtrack in radiant 1080i Full HD quality at 60fps - and in a choice of formats. For playing back on TV, users can choose AVCHD, which generates a smaller file size. If they want to edit their movies first, the 720p HD Motion JPEG format is ideal. It generates larger files but is easier to handle with PC editing software.

Instant Compatibility

Like every other PEN, the PEN E-P3 is a system camera. The moment you purchase it, you gain instant access to more than 500 Micro Four Thirds, Four Thirds and other lenses (via a adapter), including Olympus' legendary M.ZUIKO DIGITAL range of high-quality optics. Highlights of the range are two new fast-aperture lenses.

The kit lens supplied is another first-class option. The re-sculpted M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm (28-84mm**) 1:3.5-5.6 II R is specially designed for near-silent operation, so users can shoot HD movies in stereo without the background whir. It's metallic casing and compact, lightweight design makes it a perfect match for the PEN. Irrespective of the specifications of the lens users attach, thanks to built-in Image Stabilisation they can be confident of capturing blur-free shots.

And thanks to Accessory Port 2, they can also select from the ever-growing family of PENdedicated accessories, including the Bluetooth®-compatible PENPAL that automatically reformats still photos for wireless transfer to other compatible devices and social media.

Instant High Capacity

The E-P3 further takes the worry out of photography and offers almost unlimited memory expansion possibilities by providing compatibility with the new SDXC*** removable media card format. The Pen also offers compatibility with the latest generation Eye-Fi wireless memory cards allowing you to automatically upload photos and videos from your camera directly to your computer or to your favourite on-line photo site.

The Olympus PEN E-P3 is available in the following configurations, in Black, White or Silver:

  • E-P3 Kit with M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6 II R Lens
  • E-P3 Double Zoom Kit with M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6 II R and M.ZUIKO DIGITAL ED 40-150mm 1:4.0-5.6 R Lenses
  • E-P3 Pancake Kit with M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 17mm 1:2.8 Pancake Lens
  • E-P3 Body Only

* As of June 2011.
** 35mm camera equivalent.
*** SD is a trademark of SD Card Association

Product Description

EZ-M1442 II R Kit Charger, Rechargeable Battery, USB Cable, Video Cable

Customer Questions & Answers

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Olympus PEN E-P3 18 Mar 2012
By Matt
I traded up from five year old compact point and shoot in order to take pictures of my 1 year old daughter and use on holidays / days out. I had grown tied of poor image quality and shutter lag and fancied something I could invest in over the long term, particularly where lenses were concerned.

Initially I looked into the DSLRs, such as the Canon 600d and the Nikon D5100, but quickly realised these were a waste of money for my purposes purely on account of their size. As the saying goes, `the best camera is the camera you have with you', and ultimately I knew these big DSLRs would just stay at home.

I soon came across Mirrorless cameras (Compact System cameras) and realised that this segment of the market was for me. The main contenders were the Olympus E-P3, Panasonic GX1 and Nikon V1, but the balance tipped towards the E-P3 on account of its looks (and lens choice, where it beat Nikon). Sony NEX 5n was a brief consideration, but it was so ugly and out of proportion with its lens it put me off, no matter how good a write up it got.

In fact I've just been on a beginners' camera course and without a doubt my E-P3 was the most admired camera. Indeed, a couple of people were there who had just purchased their big Canon DSLRs without really doing any homework and hadn't even realised there was such a thing as Mirrorless cameras. I have to admit I felt a bit sorry for them as they began to realise that perhaps they had gone for the wrong camera.

Here are a few pros and cons of the E-P3 that really ring true for me:
o Image quality has been great for all my purposes and so far the out of camera JPEGs have not disappointed.
o 14-42mm kit lens - a surprisingly good lens for both photos and video. I had expected a kit lens to be poor.
Read more ›
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
I bought this camera as soon as it was released, and it has been absolutely fantastic. It is so easy and intuative to use straight out of the box, and yet after some time studying the manual, I was able to customise and personalise this thing to the nth degree. There are also enough direct buttons and dials so I can change my settings quickly. The image quality is amazing. It may not have the latest sensor with the biggest megapixels out there but for anything that I'm ever going to print or crop the image resolution is more than enough. Up to ISO 800 I can hardly see the difference between this and my Canon 7D. And I have never needed to go beyond this level of sensitivity given the in body image stabiliser which seems to work a treat. The best thing about this is the size or lack of. I was sometimes put off taking out the 7D due to its bulk, so just used a point and shoot. The E-P3 I can happily take everywhere. Its not pocketable by any means, but fits easily into a small discrete camera bag, and I am happy to have it hang round my neck on a day out with the family in a way I would not be with my 7D. The build quality and feel of the E-P3 is also great. To me it feels so much better thab the Panasonic G3 which is a bit plasticky. Unlike the sony NEX cameras which I tried out, the lenses are also small and light. Can't wait for the Panasonic pancake zoom lens to hit the shops.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best digital camera I have owned 4 Nov 2012
Cameras and luggage have many things in common. They often so give away in compromise what they have gained in features. With luggage its always a toss up between space, strength and weight. With cameras its about size, picture quality and ergonomics.

I have owned my EP-3 for about eighteen months now and have taken, perhaps, 2000 photos with it. I tend to use either the 12mm f2 Olympus lens or a Lumix/Leica 25mm F1.4. Both give fantastic results. With all my previous digital cameras I have found it necessary to shoot in RAW so as to avoid the degradations of in camera JPG engines. With the EP-3 I always shoot in JPG and love the results. For the first time with any digital camera I have owned I often use the Art filters with some more than satisfactory results.

Performance is excellent in all modes of operation. The camera is light enough to carry around for a whole day without a second thought, the build quality is excellent.

Whereas I continue to search for the ideal travellers luggage, dear I say that I have found the ideal camera?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it 21 Jun 2013
Verified Purchase
I wanted a camera that is better than a point and shoot without the hassle of a full DSLR. This does the job 1000%. The positive reviews are justified.
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