Olympus Pen-F(antastic) – Part 2

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Olympus Pen-F(antastic) – Part 2
– Featuring Sub-Editor Gary Chow

Image: Here’s the guy (Gary Chow) who insisted that I should let him have the Pen-F for a weekend.

19th March 2016, Singapore – Following my review of the Olympus Pen-F in Krabi, our Sub-Editor Gary Chow was so interested in the Pen-F after reading the review and had requested for some private time with the Pen-F before I pass the Pen-F on to another Reviewer. Seeing the gleam in Gary’s eyes, I decided to let him have the Pen-F for a weekend. And it’s one of those rare occasion that I also decided to publish his review & thoughts of the Olympus Pen-F pretty much unedited.

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My Thoughts on the Olympus Pen-F

Words By: Gary Chow (Sub-Editor, Ourshuterjourney.com)

Image: By Gary Chow, Shot by Pen-F. 
The original Pen F is a cult classic film camera that is hugely popular during 60-70s.  It is a 1/2 frame film single lens reflect camera that can get you 72 exposures from a roll of 36 exposures 135 mm film.  Today (yes today!), it remains very popular among those who loves film photography.

As an Olympus-user, I am in favor of the OM-D series more than all the previous digital Pen series which does not have an electronic view finder (EVF) until the arrival of Pen F. Before the Pen F became a reality, there are a lot of speculations before the official launch of the Pen F – from various designs to the specifications that had appeared on most photography rumor sites.  These speculations had caught my attention especially one of the rumor suggested that the new Pen-F comes with the EVF. The other rumous that was spot on is none other than the tilt-table LCD screen that was built differently from the current Pen series. Maybe that’s why Olympus called the Pen F a masterpiece.


Image: By Gary Chow, Shot by Pen-F.
I have been anticipating the  arrival of this masterpiece, waiting to see, touch it, feel it and play with it.  The store that I always visit & who sells the Pen F is always packed with people.   Fortunately, I know the Editor AL is reviewing the Pen F, so I decided to contact him and beg him to let me have it for a weekend (lol). My first initial impression of the Pen F is like – WOW! with a big exclamation mark.  It is a beautifully crafted camera with no trace of screws on the exterior.  Yes it is screw-less and i have yet to see the same on any other cameras !!! It weighs quite a bit but it is well put-together with a good mix of metal and leather.  It is a definitely a solid modern classic, a handsome street camera packed with powerful features that is unique to Olympus.My favourite features from the OMDs are all available in this modern classics, features like live-comp & live bulb (to die for) especially you are into long exposure, light trail and milky way photography. Now the Pen F is packed with a 50 mp high res mode, the results are as good as any full frame camera as long as the subject stay still.  I didn’t see a lot of differences between a 20 mp and 16 mp. However, reading the specs and looking at the images that I’ve gotten, I assure you that they are improvements over the old sensor.



Personally, I enjoy shooting with the Pen F, especially with the new dial at the front of the camera that gives you quick access to change the levels of highlights and shadows, colour tones and tonal curves.  It is a useful features if you don’t want to waste too much time post processing your pictures. If you want SOCC pic without much post processing, this will be the only camera you need.  As always, the Olympus jpeg are gorgeous, this new features certainly helps to cut down workflow.
Just imagine this new workflow using the new Pen F;
– shoot subject with in camera post processing
– wifi to camera
– upload social media
= ultimate convenience and enjoyment.

Alan Photo

There only 2 things that i wished that the Pen F has,
1. have a taller body to accommodate the PRO series of lenses without the need of a additional grip.  As of now, the PRO lenses are protruding out from the camera base.
2. have a weather sealed body at this price point.

Overall, the Pen F is a fantastic street camera that you will enjoy shooting.  It looks cool and works great.  I am not saying it is a perfect camera, there are certainly some areas that need to be improved and i trust Olympus will definitely provide timely update as they always do.

Gary Chow.


Thanks Gary for sharing your thoughts about the Olympus Pen-F. We will highlight & feedback to Olympus Singapore on your thoughts.Mean time, look out for Part 3 as we passed the Pen-F to a famous street photographer, Daniel Ho and see what will he say about the Pen-F.


Do check out what we did with the Olympus TG-870 that we brought along here.
Read up past reviews that we had done for Olympus here.

To read Editor AL’s Part 1 Review of the Pen-F, click here.
To read Guest Review Editor Daniel Ho’s Part 3 Review of the Pen-F click here.



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About Editor AL

About The Web Editor: http://about.me/shutterjourney
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2 Responses to Olympus Pen-F(antastic) – Part 2

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