skip to Main Content

(FT3) No spectacular changes on new PEN cameras?


An anonymous source juts sent me a message. He says he had the chance to test the new PEN cameras. He also says that there are “no spectacular changes, although the ergonomics have improved on the smaller models.

I may ask the source if he can explain me the following sentence I got from another anonymous source saying: “updates to the EPL range should include some sort of viewfinder.“. Does it mean there is some kind of new external viewfinder or what?

Thanks for your help :)

P.S.: Finally a great deal for my European colleagues: E-PM1 body for 199 Euro by Fotoexperte on eBay Deutschland (Ships to all Europe).

  • Mistral75

    An anonymous source just sent me a message (…)

    Shouldn’t this be classified as (FT2) = rumor from unknown sources?

    • admin

      There are some things I didnt’ write. Got a asimilar message weeks ago from another one too (to not expect too much from the new PEN).

      • Were anyone naive enough to expect the E-M5’s sensor in the entry-level PENs?

        This is rather a sensible rumor.

        At best, one can expect the newer Panny sensor from the GF5. or G3. or G5.

        • BLI

          Olympus’ new strategy, discussed at length in this forum 2-3 months ago, clearly laid out a plan to tricle new sensors and other technology from high end models to lower-end models. Unless the E-M5 sensor is prohibitely expensive, I *do* think it is a reasonable expectation to see the E-M5 sensor in the PENs.

        • dg

          I expected the new sensor and much of the new technology to find it’s way into the new Pens. That seems to be the Olympus way. We’ll see in a few weeks- if not sooner.

        • nicwalmsley

          What are you talking about? Entry level Pen has always had same sensor as top of the line Pen. One perfect system.

          Question is, will the new Pens have as good a sensor as the E-M5? I for one will be disappointed if not.

  • hortron

    The 16 MP sensor would be a spectacular change. I hope it’s not just an design/tweaky feature refresh.

  • R

    so it doesn’t have the em5 sensor?

    • peevee

      If new PENs have the same ancient sensor, Olympus is going down.

      • With the new sensor they would sell a lot more PEN then with the old sensor. Are they really so stupid to bring out the new PEN with the old sensor? But it would not be a surprise for me, hey, it’s Olympus…

      • You have no idea how often Olympus, Panasonic and m43 at large went down on lack of specific feature!

        Customers just won’t get it ;)

        • spam

          +1, pretty funny how people wanting specific features think everyone will want the same.

          • Mr. Reeee

            No kidding! It’s like the endlessly pointless debate about SLR and rangefinder body styles.

    • If Olympus is still using their old sensors on the new pens why in the world would people be interested in their new pens when they can purchase the older pens at a lesser price. I think the em5 sensor and new IBIS will be the most important upgrades they should apply on the new pens. If the new pens have similar specs as the current pens I will be purchasing the GX1 instead this Christmas.

      • The Other Chris

        Hell, they could just include the new E-M5 sensor and leave out the 5 axis IBIS and that’d be good enough.

        Just don’t give us the same old PEN sensor. I’d buy an E-PM1 with just the new sensor upgrade in a heartbeat.

  • Miroslav

    “the ergonomics have improved on the smaller models”

    Smaller modelS. So how many of them are there :)?

    BTW, I expect spectacular changes, i.e. new sensor. No spectacular changes = no buy ;).

  • I wasn’t expecting spectacular but revolutionary changes. ;-)

  • Yun

    Build in viewfinder must have plus new sensor otherwise I can’t see Oly can compete with new NEX cameras .
    By the way , I only interest in OMD Pro if Pana failed to come out something to impress me .

  • s

    Clicked ebay link and got text “Your search returned 0 items.”

  • Oliver

    A better sensor is simply a selfunderstanding must have. Improved ergonomics are minor changes. But that´s not enough to give new impulse to the market.

    In my opinion Oly needs a PEN competing against Sony NEX7 and the coming NEX6. There is a big gap between the E-M5 and the E-P3.

    The overwhelming success of the M5 and the bad prices for used P3 show that people definitely want to have an evf.

    I like my PL3. I don´t want to abandon the VF2. But I don´t like the clunky look, feel and use of PL3 with VF2. If there´s no evf-PEN coming I´m very interested in a NEX6. More than ever recognizing that the NEX6 seems to get a better handling than the former NEXes.

    • TomR

      Hi Oliver, I don’t really understand. Isn’t EM5 a pen with a built in viewfinder? Doesn’t it compete with the NEX7?
      I have a epl2 with the vf2 firmly mounted on it and I am planning to buy the em5 as my upgrade to a built-in viewfinder (plus better sensor, plus those lovely control wheels – tried them in the shop).
      If Olympus did release a pen with built-in vf, I don’t see what would differentiate it from EM (except possibly the position of the vf). This rumor makes sense to me, although I would imagine new pens would need the new sensor.

      • Oliver

        Why not a M5? It´s simple: I want a smaller cam, like the PL3. And I´m no 1300-euro-camera-buyer.

        Sonys NEX7, NEX6 and Nikons V1 show it´s possible to build smaller cams with evf.

        And Panas G3/5, Nikons V1 and Sonys Alpha SLT show it´s possible to build advanced cscs for much less than 1000 euros.

        • Agent00soul

          None of the smaller cameras you mention has an IBIS. Have you seen the size of the E-M5 IBIS module?

          • Oliver

            I know: IBIS, bulb liveview, 10 fr/s, water protected housing … nice to have. But not everybody needs that stuff.

            There´s also an IS in the pens. The IBIS is not what photography means to me. But I definitely want an integrated evf.

            • avds


              • Henrik

                Gotta say Oliver is spot on for what kind of camera Im looking for. NEX6 sounds awesome but the lenses are to big for me.

                The tech to build a small camera with in-build EVF (a good one too) is availble and my guess it has been has a while.

                I think the NEX6 will be a big hit.

  • WT21

    A second anon source said??? Seems weak to me, so I’ll hold out hope that it’s wrong.

    All the other things people are talking about, I want too (EVF, tilt, etc. etc.)

    But I just need the NEW SENSOR. If there is no new sensor, I will move to a different camera maker. Either I’ll try the Panny G5, or NEX or maybe one of the rumored smaller FF DSLR. My RX100 is covering a lot of my point and shoot type needs, and is producing BETTER high ISO than my EPM1. If the new Pens are the old sensor, then there is no reason on earth to buy one. Period.

    • admin

      I will have more info soon. Don’t worry!!! :)

    • I have bought mine 3 months ago -body only e m5 – whith the complete set of the hand grip for 999€.

      • JF

        You are lucky, I paid 150 euros more and had no grip at all…

  • chris

    With the success of the EM5 I have a hard time believing that the new Pens – or any other Olympus 43 or m43 camera – will not be using the same sensor. I say this is false.

  • dellasus

    what I think is,

    They might using GF5 sensor.

    Gf5 sensor is doing very well at ISO3200.Reduce half of the noise compare to GF3 in RAW photo.

  • Biggstr

    If ergonomics have improved on the smaller models, does that mean that there are larger models as well? Hoping for a P4 with the OMD sensor and focus peaking. The VF-2 works perfectly for me as a viewfinder.

  • LovinTheEP2

    Lets just hope the RUMOR is 100% wrong – even though it’s at a 3 level.

    I was really hoping for a new EP4 with the new sensor or even a 12mp version of the OM-D sensor and sliding screen.

    Guess I’ll be keeping my EP2 for quite a while longer.. especially since I was hoping the Sigma DP Merrills would be awesome but still very handicapped cameras. Boooooo. If only I could afford a Leica. May be time to look at the EOS m a bit more carefully.

  • safaridon

    More reasonable rumor as Oly wants to differentiate between the EM5s and Pens especially if another pro EM is in works as reported. Furthermore Oly is famous for producing more “new” Pen bodies with incremental internal changes so I would not expect EM5 sensor and no new IBIS. If anything expect the new Pens to be smaller and aimed at the wildly successful GF3/5 instead. The news of the tiny F8 15mm lens is a clue they may be going smaller.

  • samshootsall

    some ppl just want new cameras and really not using them. Maybe use it for a month and sell it on Ebay…once another camera comes around…

    Just like ppl who buys DSLRs and not really know how to use them (ie ask a ? on how to change settings).

  • safaridon

    What Oly and Pany need to do now to complement their existing m4/3 models is is produce a camera body very much like the NEX7/6 only with the EM5 sensor. Why is it taking so long as they were the first to provide the mirrorless concept and rangefinder shape small body?

    • stickytape

      They didn’t think there was a market for it

  • Milt

    If Olympus is taking a long time, Panasonic is taking an even longer one. The G5, GF5, and GH3 are or will be fine, but how about something exciting like a GX1 with internal EVF? Seems like this has been a request on these boards literally for years.

  • Ab

    It makes no sense to put the EVF in the Pens cameras. They have built 3 VFs for those systems VF1, VF2 and VF3. The OMD breaks from that format and includes the EVF, the pens will remain small with the optional VF.

    How would you price a EPL4 with EVF, new sensor and IBIS? $700-800, and then how would you sell the OMD?

    Look for great new design, touch screen, tilt screen, optional EVF and new sensor.


    • nicwalmsley

      Selling point of the E-M5 is 5 axis IBIS, ergonomics, style, weather sealing, battery grips.

      • Ab

        As far as I can see, it is: Built in EVF, new sensor, new stabilization new ergonomics, weathersealing.

        3 out of 5, and weathersealing is only as good as the lenses, of which we have 2, both covering a very similar FL.

        They wont do it.


        • Oliver

          The hump on the M5 is the result of IBIS, not of the evf. So they could integrate an evf in a PEN. They need not to integrate the IBIS too.

          I´m taking 95 % of my pictures without any IS.

          And Oly itself mentioned that there´s no reason why a PEN shouldn´t have an evf.

          • Oliver

            By the way: There´s no reason why the integration of an evf should cost more than 50, 100 or 150 euros.

            That would mean about 1000 euros for a P5 or 800 euros for a PL5.

          • Miroslav

            The hump on the M5 is the result of putting accessory port on top of EVF. It’s possible to put E-M5 internals in square ( non weather sealed ) body. E-M5 shape is intentionally retro, that’s why flashless hump is there. You can put IBIS sensors elsewhere.

            • ulli

              its a fact that the hump is part of the design by intention (otherwise it wouldnt be worthy calling it an OM right), I just wonder if it is that easy to redesign the OM-D into a PEN shape without doing significant changes to certain parts like the lcd screen or even completely removing some (like the 5-axis ibis), maybe its easier to realise now, then it was during the development phase of the OM-D. just guessing as i am no designer-engineer at all.

  • LovinTheEP2

    Smaller???? The PENS with the Mini can’t get any smaller unless they go with a fixed lens option with a collapsing lens.

    The OM is mainly a WEATHERSEALED option of a m43 Olympus. It’s debated whether it’s also the variant with a builtin VF (although Olympus have flat out said there is no reason why they wouldn’t do it in a PEN as well). There is no reason not to put the new 16mp sensor in a PEN. Draws a different consumer who wants a RF body. If the next gen’s are a tweak only change. They had might as well get rid of the PEN line and improve the ZX and focus just on the OM-D line.

    I see the PEN as a VF’less clean, RF body. I see the OM-D as a VF/Weathersealed pro body and maybe.. super IBIS with the 5-axis. Although, I for one would like the 5-axis IBIS in a PEN as well. Keep the weather sealing and VF to the OM-D. Same sensor in both. Actually, I would prefer same sensor with less PIXELS in the PEN ;-)

    • Fish

      I agree. It would not be reasonable to expect that the only way to get an integrated evf from Olympus is to also pay for a magnesium body and weathersealing. There needs to an option in the pen line.

    • safaridon

      The PEN mini is small but lacks the builtin flash and smaller collapsible Xlens the GF3/5 have for a smaller overall package and to address competition from the smaller sensor Nikon I series, and Canon.

  • OneQuarterSensor

    Toys will be toys…

    • Trolls will be trolls…

      • onequartersensor

        That’s funny tho :)

    • Ash

      Cameras are the best toys ever! Beat anything from my childhood.

  • mmm

    G3/GX1 sensor would be an acceptable sensor upgrade for all the lower PEN models, with Olympus JPEG processing the improvement would be nice. But they should never, ever, EVER release another model with that original 12MP sensor. I just got an E-P1 zoom kit for $150 (to part out the zoom and match with the Pana 14mm), at that price I have no urge to get a newer body since I can’t afford a E-M5.

  • I’d so buy an E-pl 4/5 with a viewfinder in the body. That would make a slim pocketable (in my bag) version of the Om-D. and if it’s a little much for P&S upgraders, they’re still getting the E-PL1 anyway.

  • Do

    I really can’t imagine Olympus to pay Sony for developing a new sensor exlusively for them and then only use it in their heigh end model – I guess the high costs per unit than would make the E-M5 quite a bit more expensive.

    • Agent00soul

      “No spectacular changes” doesn’t mean no new sensor. A new sensor is expected, not spectacular. What the “spectacular” bit is about, is the previous rumour that the PEN lineup would be totally changed, regarding models and feature mix.

      • Ash

        Agreed. They will have the new sensor, but no major additional features such as an integrated EVF, tilt screen, etc.

        For people saying that there should be a cheaper option than the EM5 with a built-in EVF, that is probably going to be another camera in the OM-D line, not the PEN line. The PENs have eternal viewfinders as noted already.

        My 2 cents.

  • Anonymous

    Wasn’t life so wonderful and easy when everyone made the same camera, they had user selectable shutter speeds and aperture controls. Then you used a Weston Master to find the settings, sometimes using the invercone for direct light, how easy life was, the biggest decision you had was ‘What film do I want?’, even then four times out of five you didn’t even need the meter, you instinctively knew the correct settings. Oh sweet joy, how quick it was to take a photograph.

  • Anonymous

    A lot of comments are being made about whether the new sensor will be used in new Pens. I tend to agree with those who say there will be a new sensor, as to continue with the 12-Meg would be ludicrous. However what about this possibility the E-P* will come with the Sony, while E-PL & M will have the new Panny 16-Meg, sounds a crazy option but will certainly help maintain a price difference.

  • Tinta

    “Not spectacular” means “same old sensor and ibis”? Then what for?

    Only if the price goes down (around $500) could it be succesful for newcomers. But not me, who is willing to upgrade if those two features (EM5 sensor and IBIS) will apear in the new E-PL line..

  • Pasukun

    My hope for the E-PL5..

    Tiltable screen (like E-PL3 & E-M5)
    Capacity touch screen (like E-P3 & E-M5)
    Better sensor (like E-M5)
    5 axis-stabilizer (like E-M5)
    No EVF, but mountable EVF

  • AMVR

    I cannot believe the 12MP sensor is still a talking point at this stage in time…it’s a really bad sign for Olympus if people still have mistrust in their capacity to deliver ”up-to-date” technology, specially after proving they can pull off the EM5. I say this as an Olympus user (e-pl1)but I think they’ve rightfully earned such mistrust, after all, it took them SEVEN camera models (along 3-4 generations, disregarding regular 4/3)to finally ditch that awful 12MP sensor, so the fears of new PENs having that sensor are not that farfetched and wouldn’t be outside the realm of stupidity that Oly sometimes is capable of.

    I prefer to stay relatively unexcited, we know for a fact that they can do better than a Panny rehashed sensor but they haven’t been explicit in they sensor road-map so everything is relative at this point.

  • sickasaids

    I hope the people wanting the EM-5 sensor are willing to pay for it in the new PENs, because I’ll bet if it does have the same sensor people will complain about how expensive it is. My guess is if youre not willing to shell out $800 for a PEN then dont expect the EM-5 sensor

  • nik

    meaning no swivel lcd

  • nicwalmsley

    Memo to Olympus:

    Since the day of its release, the NEX 7 has stood as the exemplar of what the PEN series should aspire to become. In fact, if it were not for a single fatal flaw in the NEX system, a lack of quality compact lenses, PEN would struggle to find meaning and purpose at all.

    A PEN-5, with the form factor of the NEX 7 and the sensor from the E-M5, would represent a seriously formidable camera. Rather than cannibalising sales from OM-D, it would add to the momentum generated earlier in 2012, and cement the prestige Olympus is once again earning.

    A PEN-5M with a simple tilt screen, no in-built view finder, but the same E-M5 sensor would serve as the ultimate upgrader’s camera and help Olympus secure a strong foothold in the ~$500 price point.

    Further, a serious upgrade to the PEN line will help maintain the interest in the Olympus brand through to Q2 2013, at which point the OM-D6 would bring m43 to the Pro level, establishing Olympus as the quality compact camera platform of the future.

    To summarise, if Olympus were to compromise on the PEN series just when it’s reputation for compact quality was on the ascendancy, the momentum generated with the run away success of the O-MD E-M5 would be wasted and the future prospects of the PEN series seriously undermined.

    Now is the time to raise the bar, exceed expectations, and stun the market.

    Olympus….. Bring. It. Home.

    • pelex

      Well put, Nic!

    • stickytape

      I think such a PEN would take away sales from the OM-D, but it would not be a bad thing. It would expand their customer base, increase lens sales, and strengthen micro four thirds as a system. Better to take away some sales from the OM-D and steal market share from Sony and others than to give them free reign in the “small body with EVF” segment.

  • Oliver

    Hey Nic, are you a marketing guru? ;-)

    I would agree in most points excepting one: I´m using cameras with tilt screens for about 10 years now (Videocams, Canon G3, E-620, E-PL3). And I made the experience that there´s no better way to look at your scene than through a vf.

  • The Real Stig

    I hope Olympus gives all these Pen worshipers exactly what they are asking for – an E-M5 that leaks with the viewfinder removed costing €1200.
    What’s that?……you want it for €700?………

    • Oliver

      What´s so difficult to understand?

      They can also remove IBIS and weather sealing. Or better: Don´t remove anything from the M5. But add an evf and an up-to-date sensor to the PEN!

      Other camera makers ARE ABLE to integrate evfs in small and/or affordable cameras.

      And the sensor of the current PENs offers the image quality from 2009. But now we reach the end of 2012.

      • stickytape

        Wait…which camera makers are you speaking of that are able to integrate EVFs in small and/or affordable cameras? I’ve only seen the “small” part in the NEX7. I am yet to see it in an “affordable” camera. As for small AND affordable…well, I don’t see that happening any time soon.

        • Miroslav

          “Which camera makers are you speaking of that are able to integrate EVFs in small and/or affordable cameras?”

          Panasonic with G3, Nikon with V1, Sony with NEX-6, Fuji with X-E1. Now, it’s Oly’s turn.

Back To Top

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.

What are Cookies?
A cookie is a small file of letters and numbers that is stored in a temporary location on your computer to allow our website to distinguish you from other users of the website. If you don't want to accept cookies, you'll still be able to browse the site and use it for research purposes. Most web browsers have cookies enabled, but at the bottom of this page you can see how to disable cookies. Please note that cookies can't harm your computer. We don't store personally identifiable information in the cookies, but we do use encrypted information gathered from them to help provide you with a good experience when you browse our website and also allow us to improve our site. You can watch a simple video from Google to find more information about cookies.

Cookies used by our Website
The 43rumors website,, uses the following cookies for the collection of website usage statistics and to ensure that we can . These are anonymous and temporary. By using our website, you agree that we may place these types of cookies on your device.
Read how Google uses data when you use our partners' sites or apps:
Google Analytics Cookie Usage on Websites: Addthis cookies:
Disqus cookies:
Vimeo cookies:
Youtube cookies:

Disabling/Enabling Cookies
You have the ability to accept or decline cookies by modifying the settings in your browser. Please note however that by deleting our cookies or disabling future cookies you may not be able to access certain areas or features of our site. For information about how to disable cookies in your browser please visit the About Cookies website.