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Olympus PEN Lite E-PL3 review

The new downsized PEN CSC boasts an extremely fast autofocus system

As part of our image quality testing for the Olympus E-PL3, we've shot our resolution chart with the Olympus M. Zuiko 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 II lens mounted.

If you view our crops of the resolution chart's central section at 100% (or Actual Pixels) you will see that, for example, at ISO 200 the Olympus E-PL3 is capable of resolving up to around 22 (line widths per picture height x100) in its highest quality JPEG files.

Examining images of the chart taken at each sensitivity setting reveals the following resolution scores in line widths per picture height x100:

Olympus e pl3 resolution
Olympus e-pl3 resolution

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 200
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 200

ISO 200, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 250
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 250

ISO 250, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 320
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 320

ISO 320, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 400
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 400

ISO 400, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 500
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 500

ISO 500, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 640
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 640

ISO 640, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 800
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 800

ISO 800, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 1000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 1000

ISO 1000, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 1250
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 1250

ISO 1250, score: 20 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 1600
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 1600

ISO 1600, score: 20 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 2000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 2000

ISO 2000, score: 20 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 2500
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 2500

ISO 2500, score: 18 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 3200
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 3200

ISO 3200, score: 18 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 4000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 4000

ISO 4000, score: 14(see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 5000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 5000

ISO 5000, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 6400
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 6400

ISO 6400, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 8000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 8000

ISO 8000, score: 12 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 10000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 10000

ISO 10000, score: 12 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 12800
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 12800

ISO 12800, score: 12 (see full image)

Raw images

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 200
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 200

ISO 200, score: 24 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 250
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 250

ISO 250, score 24 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution 320
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 320

ISO 320, score: 24 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 400
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 400

ISO 400, score: 24 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 500
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 500

ISO 500, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 640
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 640

ISO 640, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 800
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 800

ISO 800, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 1000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 1000

ISO 1000, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 1250
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 1250

ISO 1250, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 1600
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 1600

ISO 1600, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 2000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 2000

ISO 2000, score: 22 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 2500
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 2500

ISO 2500, score: 20 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 3200
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 3200

ISO 3200, score: 18 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 4000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 4000

ISO 4000, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 5000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 5000

ISO 5000, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 6400
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 6400

ISO 6400, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 8000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 8000

ISO 8000, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 10000
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 10000

ISO 10000, score: 14 (see full image)

Olympus e pl3 resolution iso 12800
Olympus e-pl3 resolution iso 12800

ISO 12800, score: 14 (see full image)

Tech Specs

Product TypeMirrorless Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Green CompliantYes
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution12.3 Megapixel
USBYes
HDMIYes
Wide AngleYes
Product FamilyPEN
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Eye-Fi Card
Image StabilizationElectronic, Optical
ColourBlack
Optical Zoom3x
Brand NameOlympus
FeaturesFace Detection, Live View, Continuous Shooting Mode, Self-timer
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMotion JPEG (AVI), AVCHD
Weight (Approximate)265 g
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityWEEE
Minimum Focus Distance250 mm
Maximum Image Resolution4032 x 3024
Maximum Frame Rate60 fps
Number of Batteries Supported1
Battery Built-inNo
Battery RechargeableYes
Battery IncludedYes
Display Screen TypeLCD
Image Sensor TypeLive MOS
Total Camera Resolution13.1 Megapixel
Camera AssemblyBody with Lens Kit
Height63.7 mm
Width109.5 mm
Depth37.3 mm
Autofocus Points35
Focal Length14 mm to 42 mm (Lens 1)
Image FormatsJPEG, RAW
Audio FormatsWAV
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerOlympus Corporation
Product ModelE-PL3
Product NamePEN E-PL3 Mirrorless Camera
Product LinePEN
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberV205031BE000
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.olympus.co.uk
Marketing Information

Over the last couple of years, Olympus PEN has made a name for itself with retro-styled, easy-to-use, compact system cameras that take very high-quality pictures. The new PEN Lite (E-PL3) does that and more. It gives you all the creativity and interchangeable lenses of an SLR camera, but with none of the hassle - and none of the bulk.

Battery Life330 Shot
Package Contents
  • PEN E-PL3 Mirrorless Camera
  • 14-42mm Lens
  • Flash FL-LM1
  • BLS-1 or BLS-5 Battery
  • BCS-1 or BCS-5 Battery
  • Micro Four Thirds Body Cap (BC-2)
  • Shoulder Strap
  • USB Cable CB-USB6
  • Audio/Video Cable CB-AVC3
  • Software CD-ROM
  • Operating Instructions
  • Warranty Card
Display Resolution460000 Pixel
Limited Warranty2 Year
Built-in DevicesMicrophone, Speaker