Olympus PEN E-P5 review

Could this be the best Olympus camera to date?

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We shoot a specially designed chart in carefully controlled conditions and the resulting images are analysed using DXO Analyzer software to generate the data to produce the graphs below.

A high signal to noise ratio (SNR) indicates a cleaner and better quality image.

For more more details on how to interpret our test data, check out our full explanation of our noise and dynamic range tests.

Here we compare the Olympus PEN E-P5 with the Sony NEX-7, Olympus PEN E-P3, Olympus OM-D and Panasonic GH3.

JPEG signal to noise ratio

Olympus PEN E P5 review

These results show that the Olympus PEN E-P5's JPEG files have stronger signal to noise ratios than those from the Sony NEX-7 and Olympus PEN E-P3 at every sensitivity except ISO 200. The PEN E-P5's JPEGs also show stronger signal to noise ratios than JPEGs from the Olympus OM-D at every sensitivity except ISO 12800 (though at ISO 6400 and 25600 the two cameras' JPEGs are very similar in their results). The PEN E-P5's JPEGs have a stronger signal to noise ratio than the Panasonic GH3's JPEGs at every sensitivity except ISO 200 and 12800.

Raw signal to noise ratio

Olympus PEN E P5 review

The Olympus PEN E-P5's TIFF images (after conversion from raw) also show some strong signal to noise ratios, beating TIFFs from the Olympus PEN E-P5 with the Sony NEX-7, Olympus PEN E-P3 and Panasonic GH3 at every sensitivity setting. The PEN E-P5's TIFFs have stronger signal to noise ratios than the Olympus OM-D 's TIFFs at ISO 1600-6400, but the OMD's TIFFs are better at ISO 200-800 and ISO 12800 and 25600.

JPEG dynamic range

Olympus PEN E P5 review

The Olympus PEN E-P5's JPEG images are still reasonably strong in terms of dynamic range, having significantly greater dynamic range than JPEGs from the Olympus PEN E-P3 at every sensitivity setting. The PEN E-P5's JPEGs also have stronger dynamic range than the Sony NEX-7's JPEGs at every sensitivity setting except ISO 100 and 1600. Similarly, the PEN E-P5's JPEGs have a stronger dynamic range than the Panasonic GH3's JPEGs at every sensitivity except ISO 3200 and 6400. The PEN E-P5's JPEGs are fairly similar to the Olympus OM-D's in terms of dynamic range, producing slightly stronger results at ISO 800, 1600, 6400 and 25600, slightly weaker ones at ISO 200, 3200 and 12800, and pretty much identical results at ISO 400.

Raw dynamic range

Olympus PEN E P5 review

This chart shows that TIFF images (after conversion from raw) from the Olympus PEN E-P5 have greater dynamic range than TIFFs from the Olympus PEN E-P3 and Panasonic GH3 at every sensitivity setting, and greater dynamic range than those from the Sony NEX-7 at every sensitivity setting except ISO 200. The PEN E-P5's TIFFs are weaker than the Olympus OM-D's for dynamic range though, at every sensitivity except ISO 6400.

Tech Specs

Product TypeMirrorless Camera Body Only
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
TouchscreenYes
Wireless LANYes
Effective Camera Resolution16.1 Megapixel
GPSNo
USBYes
HDMIYes
PictBridgeYes
Product FamilyPEN
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC UHS-I), Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC UHS-I), Eye-Fi Card
Image StabilizationOptical
ColourBlack
Digital Zoom2x
Brand NameOlympus
DurabilityDust Resistant
FeaturesContinuous Shooting Mode, Face Detection, Live View, Orientation Sensor, Time Lapse Function
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMOV, MPEG-4 AVC, Motion JPEG (AVI)
Weight (Approximate)378 g
Image Sensor Size4/3" (18 mm x 13.50 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4608 x 3456
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height68.9 mm
Width122.3 mm
Depth37.2 mm
Image FormatsJPEG, RAW, MPO
External FlashOptional
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerOlympus Corporation
Product ModelE-P5
Product NamePEN E-P5 Mirrorless Camera
Product LinePEN
Exposure Control
  • Program AE
  • Aperture Priority AE
  • Shutter Priority AE
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberV204050BU000
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.olympus.co.uk
Marketing InformationPowerful. Pocketable. PEN. A classic design with a modern flair.

Designed with a modern twist to the original PEN® F, fans of the award-winning Olympus PEN family of cameras now have the PEN E-P5. The flagship PEN body that delivers a portable, premium quality experience. The E-P5 is packed with the latest innovations Olympus technology has to offer including 1/8000s Shutter Speed, 5-Axis Image Stabilization, "F.A.S.T" AF Speed, Built-In Wi-Fi capability*, 2x2 dial control and more.