A 1st Look at the Olympus E-P5 Video


1st Look at the Olympus PEN E-P5 Video

Hello to all, and happy Wednesday! I have had the new Olympus PEN E-P5 in hand for only one week and am just now starting  to use it in my daily routine. I expect a full review soon but for now I have a video showing the new features such as focus peaking and focus assist. I have been getting asked “Which one should I buy between the E-M5 and E-P5” – Well, I answer that question in the video with what I would do if buying new and if I owned the E-M5! But damn, this is a sexy little beast.


Take a look at the video for the E-P5 below!

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Many of you know I have a soft spot for the Olympus PEN series and this guy is SOLID and seems to offer almost everything we crave in a mirror less camera.

  • Great Sensor? CHECK
  • Fast AF? CHECK
  • Image Stabilization? CHECK!
  • Superb Lenses? CHECK!
  • Great style and design/Usability? CHECK!
  • Built in EVF? NO! But a great External upgrade!
  • Touch Screen, WiFi, 1/8000th Shutter? CHECK!
  • Tiltable HUGE and CLEAR LCD? CHECK!

Shot with the Olympus E-P5 and 17 1.8 at 1.8


The E-P5 uses the same exact 16MP sensor as the OM-D and it is a fantastic sensor. The IQ will be about the same, especially if shooting in RAW. What is different is the look, feel and heft. The E-P5 has a very solid heft to it, more so than any previous PEN camera. The LCD is beautiful, the AF is blazing and  the image stabilization is INCREDIBLE just as with the E-M5.

The new VF-4 is HUGE but a pleasure to use, the best Olympus EVF to date which makes the old VF-2 look dated. NOTE: This EVF will NOT work on the Leica M 240, only the VF-2 or the Leica EVF-2 will work. 

The shutter sound is NICE and crisp and feels great. I like the shutter sound better than the OM-D E-M5 and this is also shown in the video below. The E-P5 has a shutter capable of 1/8000th second for those that like to shoot their fast lenses wide open in the daytime. The OM-D has a 1/4000th second shutter.

Shot at f/2


The new E-P5 also has WiFi capability but loses the weather sealing.

Overall, the best PEN yet without question but is it worth the cost today with so much competition in APS-C land? Find out in my full review which is coming soon! One thing is for sure though and that is the fact that the OM-D E-M5 was able to hang with the APS-C crowd and was and is highly capable. So many get hung up on sensor size and yes, full frame is GORGEOUS and can do things no smaller sensor can but the sensor in the E-P5 and E-M5 is superb and can provide gorgeous results, especially with the fantastic lenses available for this system from fisheye to extreme tele.

17mm at f/3.5


The best bang for the buck when buying this new E-P5 is to go for the full kit that consists of the fabulous 17 1.8 lens and the VF-4 EVF at $1449. Hard to find in stock but you can find this set at the dealers below:

B&H Photo HERE

Amazon HERE

PopFlash has the silver IN STOCK now!


To see my OM-D E-M5 review, click HERE 



  1. hi steve,

    i read over at dpreviews about a serious flaw of the P5, which seems to be shutter shock/image blurr.
    did you have any issues with blurred images so far?

    • Controversial issue that seems to affect not only the P-5 but some other Sony and Olympus bodies to varying degrees.
      Mine is very prone to produce blurry images with the 75mm and 40-150mm lenses in the approx 50-200th sec shutter range, close to being unusable. However the issue is much diminished if I turn the IBIS system off.
      According to web rumours, an update may be in the wings, similar to an update for the E- M1, if it is technically feasible.

  2. Steve – I was about to pull the trigger on the EP-5 but Panasonic just announced a very similar specced in body IS – GX7 – but with a built in tilt-able EVF. Gut feel – what do you think? Access to both companies great lenses!

  3. Thanks for the masses of information on the OMD and the EP5 (although I know you haven’t “officially” reviewed it yet) and for all the comments from other users. Oh, and also for the older review of the EPL1. I bought the EPL1 about 2 yrs ago as the price was excellent and I was upgrading from P&S but felt I wasn’t “expert” enough to justify a DSLR. I now have the Oly 14-150mm, 45mm & 25mm lenses and bought the VF2 which I am pleased with, as I am with the EPL1 which has taught me a lot.

    Since doing a one day street photography event with Neil Buchan-Grant earlier this year (on whose advice I bought the lovely 45mm lens) I have been agonising over whether to upgrade to an OMD or perhaps the EP5 or even a DSLR, but ultimately think that with the lenses I already have it would be foolish to look at another system. I also realised that I rely heavily on the LIveview ability to actually see what you are getting before you take the shot and as some of my efforts to use aperture and shutter speed rather than rely on the camera to do all the work have not always been successful I am almost certainly going to stay with my M43.

    On the basis of these and other reviews I think I will plump for the OMD over the EP5, even though a new OMD may be on the horizon. Any final input from Steve or anyone else is welcome,



    • Truth be told, I have been using it but there is nothing new to say. It’s a PEN version of the OM-D with an external VF. Same IQ, same IS, improved LCD and external EVF but basically, an OM-D in PEN form. If you like the PEN design, go with PEN. If you like the E-P5 design and built in EVF, go for that one. To me they are the same for shooting photos with video being better on OM-D from what I have seen, and not sure why. The E-P5 has the rolling shutter effect pretty bad.

      • Thanks! Gizmos of WiFi and shutter speet don’t do the deal then?
        I like the PEN design. Pricing of the OMD is better though.
        Pany is also going to introduce a new GX7 with 18MP (could be crop, 16MP real world). Don’t like Pany colors though…

        Thanks again… fog is clearing inside my head 😉

        • Well, the higher shutter speed is nice for those that like fast glass, WiFi, not my thing anyway but for those that want it, it is on the PEN. The OM-D is easier to hold (for me). PEN is pretty attractive though 🙂 All personal pref but one over the other is not going to matter when it comes to the IQ or images.

  4. I already bought into the Olympus Pen system and I have the E-P3 with VF2, plus Panasonics 20mm F1.7, the Oly 45mm F1.8, Oly 40-150 and Oly 9-18mm. The OMD is very similar to the E-P5 in the picture quality dept having the same sensor but the reason I was NOT tempted to upgrade from E-P3 to OMD is the quality of the EVF which is the same as the VF2. I find the VF2 very unsatisfactory because of the resolution and also the very cold colour cast. I’ve sort of come to the conclusion that I don’t like EVFs at all but maybe viewing through the VF4 may change my mind. My main issue with all of this type of camera, while I really appreciate the light weight compared to my Canon 5D is that, because I am short sighted spectacle wearer, I can only view the LCD by taking my glasses off or using the VF2 which I don’t like. I therefore am veering back to a DSLR with glass pentaprism and (for me) much faster operation,putting up with the extra size which is not much of a trade off for the better quality images possible with larger sensors. If anybody is interested in the camera or lenses I’ve listed let me know.

  5. Steve, I love your reviews, thanks. I know you will go into detail about the performance of the camera, which is great. Can you also broaden the scope a bit and say where this camera might fit into your overall portfolio?

    For example, you have recently moved from the RX100 to the GR as your pocket camera of choice primarily because of the larger sensor on the GR in the small form factor. The PEN also has an APS-C sensor – but is better with movies. How does this fit?

    Also, say a few words about how a prosumer guy like me looking to miniaturize his camera gear for travel might want to go. I was thinking the RX100ii and the RX1R – but maybe the GR instead of the RX100ii, but then that is two fixed lens cameras.

    Too many choices – looking for advice to help simplify the decision.



  6. Steve
    Could you do a comparison between the EP-5 and the new Fuji X-M1 and the Fuji x100s. Thanks

    • Not really as I do not own the X100s or X-M1. The X-M1 will be the same as the X-E1, just without EVF. The OM-D/E-P5 is my pick over the Fuji’s. BTW, I prefer the X100 output over the new X100s. The E-P5 is the same as the OM-D IQ wise. I prefer the OM-D to the Fuji X-E1 and X-Pro 1 so will prefer it to the X-M1. But that is my personal pref.

  7. Steve, in your review of the EP-5 can you also try your Summilux 50 on using the 1/8000 shutter speed and also now that it has 5 way stabilisation, would it be good enough to use the Elmarits in low light with slow shutter speeds (eg. 1/10) hand held please?

  8. It’s just another EP-whatever. The only thing that is impressive is their image stabilization. But Sony saved the company and they will be releasing a ff nex with this image stabilization. Can you image an RX1 with removable lenses and with this oly image stabilization! Now that would be spectaculair. This EP-5 however is a rather boring update.

    • Can you please tell us your user experience with the EP5? It would be useful to hear first-hand experience with a tool by one who owns and shoots it and finds the update boring?

      • I did not find the update boring but it is not much of an update. It is basically an E-M5 in a PEN body without an EVF. Build is phenomenal, and it is an attractive camera. If it had a built in EVF I would be all over it. If you liked the E-M5 but preferred the PEN looks, this is for you.

    • E-P5 beats the V1. I have both here, no contest. The V1 is selling for $269 with the 10mm 2.8, which is a great buy as its worth $650 easily. The E-P5 is another notch up (or two).

      • I bought the V1 yesterday with the 10-30mm (USD 420 for the kit) – and I’m kind of happy to know that I now have the same camera as you – but I guess I would have loved even more to have a Leica M 🙂 What settings do you use for the V1? Is the 10mm the smartest prime to get?

        • Dude, don’t you read/watch this blog?
          according to Steve, “the smartest prime to get” would be the 1.8/18.5mm
          and in fact, that’s true. it’s mounted 95% of the time on my v1.
          BUT if you prefer smaller focal lengths like 35mm or below, the 2.8/10mm prime would be your thing.
          (honestly: get both! they are cheap as hell!)

  9. Technically what prevents Panasonic and Olympus to join together again for a 4:3 equivalent of Full frame (35mm) with a 32x24mm sensor (4:3 aspect ratio) that has an image circle that will let the lens made for these sensors work on micro 4/3 as well. Since the 4:3 format is more squarish than rectangular like a 35mm full frame the lens can be smaller as well at the same time providing superb iso and resolution being a huge sensor. Looking at Fuji X-M1 and Sony RX1, Olympus should be able to squeeze this into a slightly larger than e-p5 camera. Make this a hybrid sensor by Sony and you have a killer camera wouldn’t you say.

    • Technically, nothing, but realistically, their commitment to the Micro 4/3 standard. They would have to launch a whole new platform, lens mount, and lenses, to compete with the established 135-format “full frame.” That would be a tall order for much richer companies, let alone Olympus + Panasonic.

      • great. Thanks. I kind of understand that now. I was thinking more along the lines of two different lines just like APS-C and full frame, there could be a M4/3 and this 32x24format. If the M4/3 mount cannot accomodate the image circle for a larger sensor just like Sony’s E mount does with a full frame image circle then this would be pointless. I thought M4/3 mont could accomodate larger sensors. Thanks for your response. Much appreciated.

  10. I found the following video after watching Steve’s:
    It actually showed E-P5’s video looks better than GH3 with less aliasing but wider dynamic range! Though, E-P5 has micro blocks on busy background when a camera moves. 20Mbits/s is a culprit for improving video quality. Anyone considering GH3, pay attention to this video and E-P5.
    Steve, does Nikon V1 develops micro blocks?

  11. As usual a great review.

    I have the OM-D and I was wondering about changing to the E-P5 with a great 17mm lens but having given it some thought I’m going to stick with the OM-D and wait to see what Olympus bring out next in that line.

    The OM-D comes with a rather nice 12-50mm kit lens, EZ, weather sealed, and macro function which I’d miss if part exchanging.

    I’ve the Sony RX100 m2 on order so that’ll do me as my pocket camera.

    I thought your quick precis of the Pen menu was great and that focus peaking looks awesome.

    I can see this and the other new PEN features in the E-M5 successor so, for now, I’ll carry on with the OM-D.But like you say, it’s a tough call!

    Keep up the great work.

    • I hope that Steve posts a video on the size difference between the EP-5, RX100, and the GR. I would like to see them all next to each other if I could.

      I’m not a professional, I’m just looking for good IQ so I can blow up my photos in prints. I have an old Olympus dslr and some good glass, but I never take that camera anywhere anymore because it is such a pain to carry. I never travel with it as it would be another piece of luggage and cost extra. I want a camera I can put in my bag.

      I find it interesting that you are ordering a Sony RX100 m2 for your in pocket camera, is the EP-5 that much bigger? I wonder how this would compare to the RX1 in size?

      I’m considering either an RX1 – RX100 combo pack – maybe the GR instead of the RX100. Or go with an APC camera – Fuji or Olympus. Price doesn’t matter to me so much at this level – its not like I’m getting a Lecia.

      – Roger

        • I’ve had my RX100m2 a few days now and it packs a punch for something so small.
          An ideal companion to my OM-D.
          I tried some shots in near darkness and it did well. Still getting used to it but first impressions are it is worth the price.
          Slightly bigger than its predecessor but still fits in jeans pocket so I’m never without a serious camera.

  12. Such a sexy camera, until you add the damn evf!?! Just make it 3/8″ taller and add a viewfinder like a real camera… So frustrating.

  13. I haven’t used a PEN since the EP-2. I really shoot a lot of video nowadays and usually use the nikon V1 when I want to shoot video and stills. How is the quality of the video on the EP-5? Is it as good as the V1 or Sony Nex cameras?

  14. Steve
    How would you evaluate this Pen compared to the Fuji X-E1. The X-E1 forces compromises: no tilt screen, no Art filters, slower focusing (?), no touch screen, lower resolution screen. Which one would you go for?

    • Id take the E-P5 or OM-D any day over an X-E1, but that is my opinion. Here is why:

      PEN has much better build and feel (yes this is true)
      PEN has a tilt LCD, and a better looking LCD
      PEN has a touch screen
      PEN focuses MUCH faster and more accurate than the Fuji
      External EVF (VF4) is much nicer than the EVF in the X-E1
      PEN has much nicer lenses to choose from (yes, this is fact)
      Low light is good up to 6400, Fuji would win after that but who shoots at such high ISO? Not many.
      The PEN and OM-D IQ is superb and the sensor rated just as high as the one in the X-E1 except for higher ISO with DXO
      The PEN with a 12, 25, 45 and 75 would be all you need. Add a Panasonic 35-100 if you want some tele (200 equiv).
      If you would rather have two zooms, the Panasonic12-35 and 35-100 are stellar. Up there with the Nikon 24-70, etc.

      The PEN is faster, better usability, more superb lenses to choose from that are small and made like little jewels, and for me, an easy choice over the Fuji X bodies.

    • I own both X-pro and X-E1 with the primes and zoom. Before buying into the Fuji I used an EP-1 and have also used the OM-D occasionally since, with the 17mm and 12mm.

      I agree with Steve’s evaluation, and would add a few more comments :
      – if you plan to shoot video, the Fuji is definitely out of competition, at least if you use AF : it will restart hunting even if the camera is fixed on a tripod and there is no movement. No IS, while the Olympus has an IS that is great for movies
      – still no fast 35mm equivalent for the Fuji !
      – I wear glasses and the EVF of Fuji X-E1 is almost unusable for me given its built/disposition. So I would much prefer paying for a removable EVF that has a great magnification.
      – AF remains infuriating on the Fuji, no matter what lens you use. As a street shooting camera or for portraits this is just no working unless you can deal with 5-10 seconds of waiting:adjusting. On a winter trip to NYC I can say I missed about 35% of the shots, as soon as there was some movement, window reflection, sunset/rise or high contrast (eg bright sky / city line)
      – lenses : I think the Fuji lenses are great (the 14mm is stellar), but the Olympus primes are really more fun and pleasing to use and perform very well, if not as well as the Fuji ones (the 12mm Olympus is just great).
      – the aperture ring (as well as the exposure compensation) on the Fuji system is a mess, as the slightest friction (wearing wearing the camera on your shoulder or holding the lens) can accidentally change the aperture without your noticing. The lens hoods and caps for Fuji come with the lenses but are so cheap I keep loosing them. Olympus primes are really made like jewels (feel and handling)

      The EP-1 is still my favorite digital camera, as using it is a very stimulating experience. It is much more solid than the X-Pro and X-E1 (which show signs of wear after less than one year). I usually enjoy the results I get from the Fuji, but would not advise anyone to buy into the system unless they want the Fuji colors, better DOF, and are sure they can live with the drawbacks and frustrations.

  15. Don’t forget the E-P5 also has cut ISO of 100, giving a total of 2 extra stops when shooting wide open in daylight compared to the OMD.

  16. This new Pen looks great but I’m waiting for the next incarnation of the OM-D. I use many cameras including an RX1 and 5D3 but my OM-D still gets used a lot (it’s that good if used with the best lenses and you fill the frame). If I’m going to need fast autofocus and image stabilization, the Olympus may server me better than the RX1 for a lightweight carry. As a general purpose lens, I reallly like the Olympus 12mm (24mm equiv.) lens. If you are more of a 50mm equiv. shooter, go for the Panny/Leica 25mm f1.4. If you are a birder, the Panasonic 100-300 is fantastic (and you can carry it without hiring a sherpa). Freedom’s just another word for light-weight. This new Pen seems to meet the less-is-more criteria.

  17. hi Steve
    nice piece on my favourite new camera;) I just wanted to say that the vf4 didn’t work on the em5 either (the way you could add the vf2 if you were doing low level macro work for example) but new firmware will allow the vf4 to work on the em5! so the connection is identical, it’s just the firm wear that is stopping the vf4 working with the Leica M. I’m pretty sure that when Leica get around to selling most of their stock of vf2’s and they buy in and brand their own vf4’s they will bring out firmware to support it and then you’ll be able to use that or the oly vf4 with an M. This for me will be a dream ticket and will make the m so much more appealing as I love this new VF4, the view is spectacular!!

  18. Awesome teaser for us m4/3 lusters.
    – –
    The choice between this E-P5 and the OM-D isn’t primarily about style for me.
    It’s the fact that with the E-P5, you always have the option of sticking it in your jacket pocket; whereas the OM-D’s non-removable v.f. lump makes it _just_ beyond jacket pockets.
    – –
    For me, pocketability is the difference between bringing it along most of the time, versus leaving it and missing those pic opportunities that sneak up on us in daily life.

  19. It looks a great camera apart from the viewfinder sitting on the top.. Why why why Olympus. I remember the old Olympus Pens and wonder if a basic viewfinder would have been possible … But then we want everything in our cameras and interchangeable lenses mean a multi-focal length viewfinder…. A simple small sized lightweight well made strong good looking fixed focal length full frame with brilliant vewfinder and ….. I don’t even require high speed shooting, multiprogramming, or 67 different filters and the ability to email or Facebook my image.. it could even just shoot a DNG raw…. Seriously though there used to be a number of small 35mm cameras with good viewfinders but now you put a carbuncle on the top or hold them at arms length…. Am I alone in thinking this?

    • Not alone Martin. I’m as frustrated as you, I hate to say it but part of this blame falls on the consumers who are willing to buy cameras with this limitation. If people stopped buying “almost” brilliant cameras maybe these manufacturers would be forced to step up the game just that little bit extra. Course, it is better than carting around / taking”snaps” with an iPad….. smh

      • This is a theme that comes up time after time. I wish all camera would take note: Build cameras with built-in viewfinders. It isn’t that difficult.

        • fuji did. and sony. and, well, panasonic. like almost all of them… the choices are endless. what exactly do you guys whine about?

      • That was my first impression too but since bought this camera I never missed the VF.
        There is an assistansts feature called “vergrößern” in german – I guess this is zoom in english and this helps you a lot along with foldable display to focus precisely when focusing manually. This helped me a lot getting nice pictures “from the hip”
        Compared with my D700 this camera is really an every day cam, which I enjoy alot because
        not many people detecting this when take picture in public.

  20. Oh my god my comment in the Great shootout post was deleted .why? i just said I agree with that guy nothing else . we don´t have free opinion here?

    • Actually your comment was deleted due to a personal attack. You said much more than “I agree” – did you already forget what you wrote? I said many times and I say it in the rules for posting/commenting. No attacks, no personal attacks and only write what is relevant to the post. Follow the rules or get your comment trashed. I am not running this site and working on it 12 hours a day for people to come here and attack, bitch, moan and talk about things they know nothing about. I run this so people can have a place for free information, comment and discuss in a civil way. So we all learn. What I find amazing is when I required registration to comment, there were NO attacks at all. No trash talk, no BS. Now that anyone can post anonymously it all comes out.

      Anyway, I suggest you read the rules for commenting on this site. Thanks


  21. Great first introduction to the new PEN. I assume that you don’t do much printing but was wondering what your thoughts were about print sizes coming from this sensor and a prime lens?? Thanks!!

  22. Great 1st Look and Video. I think that the Super Control Panel with the combination of touch screen controls makes accessing the features and controls even more of a delight. I have been enjoying my silver edition for a couple of weeks now and I am really glad that Olympus is jumping on the peaking bandwagon. Also, the on-board flash and wireless controlling of flashes, such as the FL-600R, have been great. I love controlling the ratio of TTL flashes from the menu without moving from the camera.

  23. Hi Steve! Thanks for review. I would like to know how would you compare E-P5 to Samsung NX300 with 30mm F2 lens. Looking advance for your comments.

    • My review will not be up for 2 weeks or so, at which time I will do a comparison with the NX300. The NX 300 is fantastic, nothing wrong with it as far as quality goes. Well worth the cost.

  24. Thankyou for sharing your first impressions, Steve. But – maybe I am blinded, I can’t find any video here…?

      • I still don’t see any video, but there is a big empty space below “Take a look at the video for the E-P5 below! Maybe it is because I am using an iPad. I’ll try it later on my PC.

        • Steve’s videos normally work on my iPad providing I view from the Internet – they never work from the email…. But this one just does not want to play at all.

  25. Thanks for the review. Camera looks great. Can you tell me how you get such great black and white images? How did you get that first shot? What great skin tones! Did you shoot raw and convert in Lightroom (or another product) or did you shoot JPEG with one of the style settings? If it was raw, did you add a green filter? Please, an inquiring mind wants to know. Much appreciated.

      • Thanks,Steve. I’m real curious about it because it looks great and I think that you tend to like a green filter for portraits.

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