Olympus E-P1 Very Near Release

Olympus is in the midst of releasing a new camera line based on the µ4/3rds camera standard. The µ4/3rds sensor is the same size and type as in the regular E-series 4/3rds DSLRs (such as my E-3 and E-300), but the lens-base-to-sensor distance has been reduced to make the body smaller as well as the lenses. You can use regular 4/3rds lenses with the newer body buy using an adapter.

The best roundup of news and rumors seems to be 1001 Noisy Cameras. You'll find a whole slew of pictures, images, and links to other stories there. From what I've seen it looks to be a sweet little camera with a power punch. Whether I'll buy one or not is another matter. Because it uses the same sensor as a regular Olympus DSLR the image quality will be the same (as will the image size). The question for me is how would I use it. I've got both an E-3 and E-300, and I'm quite satisfied with both. But I must admit to a little Olympus fanboydom, and sometimes something is worth owning for its own sake.

The new E-P1 will use a SD/SDHC card instead of Olympus' xD cards. That feature removes a big impediment to owning an E-P1. I don't know how many customers Olympus has lost in the point-and-shoot marketplace because of their stubbornness over using their own xD format rather than SD. Perhaps this design decision will ripple throughout their camera lines. One can only hope.


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