It was just back in June that Olympus introduced its Pen E-P1 micro four-thirds camera, promising to being DSLR-like quality to a small, consumer-friendly form factor. But today Olympus is already rolling out an improved model in the form of the Olympus Pen E-P2, adding a fe key features to address photographers’ gripes about the E-P1 and packing one of two high performance lenses. But where the E-P2 improves on the E-P1, the E-P2’s price tag is substantially higher.
“The high demand for the E-P1 demonstrates that today’s photo enthusiasts and consumers want the high-quality imaging like that of DSLRs in a compact retro design,” said Olympus’s senior marketing manager for digital SLR John Knaur, in a statement. “The new Pen builds on the success of the E-P1 by adding many of the features that were on enthusiasts’ wish list for the second generation.”
One big addition to the E-P2 two is an accessory port below the camera’s hot shoe, enabling users to connect a separate electronic viewfinder or an optional stereo microphone for shooting video with sound. The E-P2 also sports a full manual aperture control in movie mode (giving videographers that creative freedom they so desire), and the camera sports a new continuous autofocus feature that can track subjects not only across a frame, but back and forth within a frame.
The rest of the basic specs for the E-P1 are remarkably similar to the E-P1: a 12.3 megapixel resolution, SD/SDHC storage, HD video shooting capability, in-body image stabilization, and a 3-inch LCD display. The camera also features a number of built-in creative filters and features intended to let photographers express themselves more easily: the E-P2 adds a new “iEnhance” feature to create dramatic contrast and and color, and new “Diorama” and “Cross Process” filters that can be applies to still images and video.
The E-P2 will be available with one of two M. Zuiko Micro Four-Thirds lenses: 14–42mm ƒ3.5–5.6 (28–84mm equivalent) or 17mm ƒ2.8 (34mm equivalent) and detachable electronic viewfinder for a suggested retail price of $1,099.99, it should hit retailers in December 2009.