Olympus Pen E-PL7 

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I saw a pre-production model of this unit back in the summer. Now finally as winter grips us all the chance to review it arrives. For me a first, a removable lens camera marketed with the ability to take selfies high on its tick list.

Olympus PEN E PL7 Interchangeable Lens Camera
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It is 12.5x6.5x8.5cm and weights 453grams without neck strap or flash attached.

The lens it came with is a 14-42mm and the action is very smooth.

The left side has only the neck strap anchor point while the right side has the matching anchor point as well as a rubber bung behind which are mini HDMI and AV out sockets. The base has a tripod screw and a door behind which is the solid battery and any SD card you insert. The face has just the lens and the light sensor. The face and sides are covered in leather which includes a well-designed finger hold to the right of the lens.

Unlike the majority of DSLR units this does not have a viewfinder, you use the TFT for both normal images and when the TFT is twisted through 180 degrees for the aforementioned selfies. The top has a removable flash unit where the viewfinder would have been which means the small – but effective – flash is mounted immediately behind the lens giving very good flash images. There is a nine position wheel to control all the units’ modes and to the right of this the shutter release and finally towards the right edge the on/off button.

This leaves the back that is dominated by the 6.3x4.4cm TFT this is sometimes called a 3inch display. This display can be flipped 180 degrees from the top so it appears under the body of the camera. It can also be flipped up to 90 degrees from the base useful when shooting upwards. To the right of this is a leather covered thumb rest and below this an instant video mode button, then two pairs of well marked buttons split by the ubiquitous five position joystick. Above the thumb rest two buttons used to display images on the TFT including zoom function.

I was pleased with virtually every image I took first in Auto mode – the place everyone should start with a new camera – and then in the various manual modes. The videos can be 1080P at 30FPS.

While I am no fashion expert this looks fashionable and indeed when you check out the second link at the end this is how Olympus seem to be marketing it, easy to use but it does give excellent images even they are looked at closely on a PC. For those occasions when the image needs to be elsewhere immediately it has wi-fi that links to a smartphone so images can be sent anywhere instantly.

Maximum image size is 16Mega Pixel and very clear and crisp thanks to the four thirds CMOS and image sensor.

I see it is also available in silver for those who do not like white and it can be purchased from the first link below for £399 as I reviewed it, or for those who already have suitable lenses as a body only for £50 less.

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Ease of use2
OverallOlympus Pen E-PL7 rated 92 out of 100
Highly commended product

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