Olympus E-P5 Mirrorless Camera

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78% Silver Award
The E-P5 is a PEN model that offers a competitively complete camera - with the image quality, focus speed and user interface all coming together to offer a strong package.”

Read more of the review

Key Features

  • 16MP CMOS Four Thirds format sensor
  • Twin control dials (front and rear) with '2x2' dual-mode option
  • 1/8000 sec top shutter speed, 1/320 sec flash sync
  • '5-axis' image stabilization with automatic panning detection ('S-IS Auto')
  • ISO 'LOW' (100 equiv) - ISO 25,600
  • Up to 9 fps shooting (5.0 fps with continuous AF)
  • Focus 'peaking' display
  • Intervalometer and Time Lapse movie creation
  • 1.04m dot 3" LCD touchscreen display - tilts 80° upwards and 50° downwards
  • Built-in Wi-Fi for remote shooting (iAuto only) and image transfer to smartphone or tablet
  • Optional VF-4 electronic viewfinder: 2.36M dot LCD, 0.74x magnification (equiv), eye sensor

Product Description

The Olympus PEN E-P5 is the fourth model in the E-P range, and arguably the most desirable PEN yet. It includes many of the features that made the E-M5 such a compelling package, such as the same 16MP MOS sensor, advanced '5-axis' in-body image stabilization (now with automatic panning detection), 9 fps continuous shooting, and tilting rear touch screen.

It also inherits the refinements debuted on the PEN E-PL5, such as enhanced in-camera RAW conversion, a broad-range 'HDR bracketing' mode, and the ability to specify whether you wish to use in-lens or in-body image stabilization with Panasonic OIS lenses. On top of this it adds this year's must-have feature: built in Wi-Fi for connection to your smartphone or tablet.

Specs

Body type
Body type Rangefinder-style mirrorless
Sensor
Max resolution 4608 x 3456
Image ratio w:h 4:3
Effective pixels 16 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors 17 megapixels
Sensor size Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm)
Sensor type CMOS
Image
ISO Auto (200 - 1600), 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200, 6400, 12800, 16000, 20000, 25600
White balance presets 8
Custom white balance Yes
Image stabilization Sensor-shift
Image stabilization notes '5-axis' IS
Uncompressed format RAW
JPEG quality levels Super fine, Fine, Standard
Optics & Focus
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Selective single-point
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Touch
  • Face Detection
  • Live View
Digital zoom Yes (2x 'Digital Teleconverter')
Manual focus Yes
Number of focus points 35
Lens mount Micro Four Thirds
Focal length multiplier 2×
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCD Tilting
Screen size 3
Screen dots 1,036,800
Touch screen Yes
Screen type 3:2 LCD capacitive touchscreen
Live view Yes
Viewfinder type Electronic (optional)
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed 60 sec
Maximum shutter speed 1/8000 sec
Aperture priority Yes
Shutter priority Yes
Manual exposure mode Yes
Subject / scene modes Yes
Built-in flash Yes
Flash range 7.00 m (ISO 100)
External flash Yes
Flash modes Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Fill-in, Slow Sync (1st or 2nd curtain), Manual (1/1 - 1/64)
Continuous drive 9.0 fps
Self-timer Yes (2 or 12 sec)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Center-weighted
  • Spot
Exposure compensation ±3 (at 1/3 EV, 1/2 EV, 1 EV steps)
AE Bracketing ±5 (2, 3, 5 frames at 1/3 EV, 2/3 EV, 1 EV steps)
WB Bracketing Yes (3 frames in 2, 4, 6 steps)
Videography features
Resolutions 1920 x 1080 (30p), 1280 x 720 (30p)
Format H.264
Microphone Stereo
Speaker Mono
Storage
Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMI Yes
Wireless Built-In
Remote control Yes (Optional RM-UC1)
Physical
Battery Battery Pack
Battery Life (CIPA) 330
Weight (inc. batteries) 420 g (0.93 lb / 14.82 oz)
Dimensions 122 x 69 x 37 mm (4.8 x 2.72 x 1.46)
Other features
Orientation sensor Yes
Timelapse recording Yes (.AVI, 1280 x 720, 10fps)
GPS None

Reviews

DPReview Conclusion

Scoring is relative only to the other cameras in the same category at the time of review.

Score Breakdown
Poor Excellent
Build quality
Ergonomics & handling
Features
Metering & focus accuracy
Image quality (raw)
Image quality (jpeg)
Low light / high ISO performance
Viewfinder / screen rating
Performance
Movie / video mode
Connectivity
Value
Silver Award
Silver Award
78 %
Overall Score

The E-P5 is the most substantial reworking of the original PEN model, and it's the most impressive yet. It produces the same excellent image quality as the E-M5 and has a proper two-dial control system. This, combined with a better touch screen and arguably the prettiest PEN body, make it a more attractive and more complete camera than the series has seen before.

Good For

Out-and-about shooting. Making the most of Olympus's range of prime lenses.

Not So Good For

Sports shooting or videography.

User Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
  • jackkurtz, Jul 17, 2013 GMT:
    A Mini Review

    I picked an E-P5 in Bangkok this weekend and I've been using it exclusively for a couple of days. This is a bit of a mini review. I am a photojournalist. My "big" cameras are Canon 5D Mark III with the 24mm L, 50mm L, 100mm f2 and 200mm f2.8 lenses. I've been using Micro 4:3 cameras for a few years now as a backup or complement to the Canons. They fill the same role in my camera ecosystem that Leicas rangefinders did in manual focus days and Contax G2's did in the autofocus film days did. My ...

    Continue Reading

  • James Pilcher, Mar 30, 2014 GMT:
    My take on the Olympus E-P5

    I've had my E-P5 for several weeks now, replacing the excellent E-PL5 in my kit. The E-P5 is a jewel among µ4/3 cameras. Handling : The dual-dial control combined with the 1-2 lever makes handling a dream compared to the "fiddly" (my word) E-PL5. For some reason, the button placement on this camera seems far more intuitive than on my E-PL5; I just seem to know where to press at the right time. I know that's highly subjective, but it's very real for me and a pleasant surprise. Heft in my hand ...

    Continue Reading

  • Michael Jardine, Jul 2, 2014 GMT:
    Olympus Pen E-P5, Portrait of a Camera

    I've never been infatuated with a camera - or any other piece of gear. That doesn't mean I'm not a gear hound - I am. And I like to think that my purchase decision starts with the practicalities of features + function. But with the Olympus Pen E-P5, I was smitten at first fondling. Lucky for me, turns out it's also a pro-level work horse. Because by the time I twist-locked the 17mm f/1.7 lens on and snapped the EVF to the top, I didn't care: I had to have this camera. You Can't Buy Time That' ...

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  • Michael Jardine, Jul 8, 2014 GMT:
    A Date In The City with the Olympus Pen E-P5

    This is the second in a three-part series about the Olympus Pen E-P5, a mirror-less camera that squeezes just the right amount of pro features into a pocketable package. The first article was called Olympus Pen: Portrait Olympus Pen: Portrait of a Camera of a Camera . Here I take a look at shooting pictures with the E-P5 and trying out some of its features. I took the Pen E-P5 out for a day of shooting. Oh my. It was even more pleasurable to take pictures with, than to take pictures of. Previ ...

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Videos

Olympus PEN E-P5 Mirrorless Camera by DPReview

Questions & Answers

QUESTION

E-P5 firmware 1.5 update - what am I doing wrong?

Now I remember why I dislike the Olympus method of updating cameras and lenses so much. I recently purchased an E-P5 with the original firmware version 1.0 in place. I want to apply v1.5. I downloaded and installed the Olympus Updater and began the update. No matter what I do, I get this message: Error 0x80041037 The software recognizes the camera just fine. I have tried connecting the camera to the computer both before and after I start the Updater. I rebooted the computer after the Updater installation. I have a perfectly good, and very fast Internet connection in my home and it is operating just fine on this computer. Windows 7, 64 bit. I searched this forum for the error number, but found nothing. I find nothing in a Bing/Google search on the Internet. What am I doing wrong? Jim Pilcher Summit County, Colorado, USA

4 months ago

ANSWERS

Glad you finally got things working. I have posted here before, as others have also, about how much I dislike the Olympus way of updating firmware.  My Canon, Sony, Pentax, and Panasonic cameras were so straightforward.  Download the file, put it on a memory card, and then the camera would update from that.  I think Nikon and others do it the same way.  Olympus is the only company that I have seen that requires the use of this problem-prone program that only runs on Windows and Macs. How does someone on Linux, Android, iOS, etc. get the firmware on their Olympus body?  Also, if you have 2 or more identical bodies and want to update them all you have to go through the download process separately for each body. Continue Reading

Henry Richardson answered
4 months ago

Likely nothing. Looks like your computer is, at the moment, unable to communicate with the Olympus server that holds the firmware file on the Internet.  The Olympus server may be down or overloaded; it could be a firewall issue on your PC; maybe a wireless router issue or DNS issue.  I'd suggest rebooting your wireless router if you're using one -- sounds like you've already rebooted your PC -- and trying again.  If still no joy, wait a bit, perhaps even overnight, and try again.  If that doesn't solve things, it'll be time for some more heavy-duty troubleshooting.  These sorts of things are very frustrating, but often transient. I don't think the Olympus firmware updating procedure is any less robust or effective than other methods in use.  It's just unfamiliar to many, and not particularly good at reporting what it's doing. Continue Reading

Caledonia answered
4 months ago

My biggest complaint is you can't tell it to download an update without the camera attached. Why is this a problem?  Because you want to make SURE your battery does not run out, and if you have a slow internet it could take an hour to download the update, and the camera has to be attached and on that whole time. Should let you have the option of downloading the file and THEN hooking up the camera to update it. No download progress meter is just an extra kick in the teeth. :) Continue Reading

iansmith answered
4 months ago

QUESTION

modifying a myset(?)

How do you make a small change to a myset and then save it (as if the options for saving a myset should include "update with current settings")?  The only way I can figure to do it is to (1) 'set' the myset you want to modify, (2) make the change, (3) clear (reset) the myset, and (4) then save it again.  This works for me, but it seems unintuitive and too complex for what should be a simple operation(?)

mb shaffer asked
2 months ago

ANSWERS

No, no, unnecessary step there. 1. Set the MySet by menu, dial or button to be active. 2. Make the change to setting(s) as needed. 3. Go into MySet menu and go down to the desired MySet number. 4. Right button to ignore the first "set" seen and get to the second "set", press OK. Now the change is in the stored MySet and able to be used immediately. Absolutely no need for that intermediate reset to kill anything. I have my 4 MySets assigned to the Mode dial (E-PL5) and I am very regularly doing that MySet change to suit the situation on the day. My help page on MySets and Mode dial assignment is here . Regards...... Guy Continue Reading

Guy Parsons answered
2 months ago

Do you/we really need the clear/reset step?   I seem to recall updating MySets w/o having to do step 3. Continue Reading

Bob Tullis answered
2 months ago

I believe if you assigned Myset to a button you have to do this extra step.  If you have Myset assigned to the Mode Dial you do not have to do step 3. Continue Reading

DLBlack answered
2 months ago

QUESTION

A few questions regarding Olympus M.ZUIKO 17mm f/1.8

Hello, So I just got my first real camera. An Olympus EP-5 and what a lovely camera. It takes great photos and all that stuff, but you already know that. See, I am a newbie, when it comes to photography generally, but I want to learn. In addition to that I have a few questions regarding the lens M.ZUIKO 17mm f/1.8. I am having a hard time figuring out how to do a normal zoom with the camera. It seems like I am only able to press the zoom button where it goes all the way to a 5x zoom where you can then zoom further to 7x, 10x and 14x. When I take photos on 10x for example it doesn't take the photo of what I have zoomed into, but the full frame of how the photo would be without any zoom. What is the point of this? I would like to be able to zoom fx 2x and just generally zoom in and out so I can choose exactly what I want to photograph. I hope you are following what I mean!? Have I missed something or is it really not possible to zoom like any other traditional camera? Do you have any ...

ANSWERS

Joen - If you react to this query as I do so hope you will .. you are about to learn what I myself regard .. after some 60 years in photography .. as perhaps the very best bit of advice you are likely to ever get.. the art of MAKING a good photograph.   This does NOT as you; maybe think, depend so much on the camera you have...but a lot more on how you USE both the camera and your own skills in making the camera give you that 'best' finished product. As far as ZOOM is concerned..  this is done and depends totally and wholly by the lens you use with the camera. A true Zoom lens is one that has several glass elements in it and some of those actually can move within the lens and in doing so give you variable focal lengths which when on the camera give you variable sized picture content. The 'zoom' effect is totally produced in the lens by having those moveable elements ..maybe such as 4 or 5 elements of what can be say 7 or 8 elements that make up the lens as a whole The camera ... Continue Reading

ericN2 answered
4 months ago

We have to learn to trust people. Sometimes they do tell the truth, so we respond in kind until evidence emerges of troll behaviour. Regards.... Guy Continue Reading

Guy Parsons answered
4 months ago

To do zoom photography you need a zoom lens, plenty to choose from at http://www.four-thirds.org/en/microft/lense.html with the regular kit lenses being in the 14-42mm zoom range and 40-150mm range, with a couple of superzoom options that cover 14-150mm or 14-140mm. Most of those zooms are mechanical where a ring on the lens sets the zoom focal length, a few are electronic zoom and can be set from the body, and that depends on the camera body as well. The 17mm lens only provides a 17mm view, about the same as a 35mm lens on a 35mm film camera. It does have the advantage of a larger maximum aperture though so is more useful than a zoom in low light situations. The 7x, 10x, 14x zoom (is the Magnify feature) you are seeing is only a live view aid and has nothing to do with the image taken. Usually is used for critical manual focus help. The only camera "zoom" is the 2x DTC (Digital Tele Converter) feature which takes the centre 4MP of the 16MP sensor and interpolates that up to 16MP, ... Continue Reading

Guy Parsons answered
4 months ago

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