Olympus E-PL 8

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Olympus E-PL 8
Image: The NEW Olympus E-PL8 

17th October 2016, Singapore – Olympus Singapore recently launched the latest Baby Pen the E-PL 8 just when Christmas Shopping is heating up in Singapore. For those unfamiliar to Olympus, the E-PL series sits on the entry-level line of Olympus’s mirrorless cameras. The “E” stands for Olympus E-series, “P” stands for Pen, a model line, “L” stands for “Lite” which means a more basic camera meant for entry-level users and “8” stands for the 8th model or 8th generation model for this line. Being made as an entry-level camera, this does not means the E-PL8 is only capable of basic photography. Looking through the specs, this little baby does pack a punch.

Image: The NEW Olympus E-PL8 
Before we proceed with the review, I would like to (again) share that if you ended up here looking for technical in-depth review, then you are certainly in the wrong place. Over here we are only keen how does the camera performed, the image quality and handling of the camera. If you cool with this, read on.


Externally, the layout of the camera is very much similar to its predecessors while new users or brand-switchers will find it easy to use & to locate the buttons to the settings. The E-PL8 also carries the same design cues from the earlier Pen series mixing contemporary designs with retro styling – not sure what I am talking about? Do google for the 35mm (Film) Olympus Pen from yesteryears.

Image: The NEW Olympus E-PL8 

On the specs, the E-PL8 is a 17.2 mega-pixel that comes with a micro 4/3 Live Mos sensor in a mirrorless body.  It features the latest TruePic VII image processor from Olympus and a supersonic wave filter for dust-reduction.  On shooting, the E-PL8 is capable of a decent shutter speed of 1/4000, ISO 100 (Low) to 25,600, brackets up to 7 frames or ISO-Bracketing up to 3 frames, not bad. Like its other Olympus siblings, the E-PL8 does comes with an array of shooting options comprising 25 scene modes & 14 art filters that you get further tweak a selection of 18 different colors under the “Pale Color” mode. Those who are lost at this point, what I meant earlier was – you can do a whole lot more of creative stuff to your images! Personally I have had hours and hours of fun with the art filters. But not part of our review criteria where we set everything to “0” or Default.

Image: The NEW Olympus E-PL8

This little Pen (as expected) was built in solid metal alloy, weights 374gm (body only) and measures 117.1 x 68.3 x 38.4mm, very similar to its earlier siblings. This means, the E-PL8 is super compact, but made solid for heavy use & abuse. Olympus passed us this Brown unit for review while we understand that the E-PL8 does comes in White & Black color too.
For more in-depth review or specifications, please visit Olympus’s website. We are really more keen to what kind of image can this little Pen produce. I took the E-PL8 with me for a couple of days and do check the images that I am sharing in this article. All images are clickable and you can view the 100% for each images (except the images of the camera where I took it with my iPhone 7). All images are not edited except for the usual straightening and cropping + watermarks. Enjoy!


Image: An old estate in Singapore (Dakota), shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  

Image: An old estate in Singapore (Dakota), shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  

Image: An old estate in Singapore (Dakota), shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  

Image: An old estate in Singapore (Dakota), shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  
I must say I am impressed with the color and the image quality. While remembering that the E-PL8 was designed as an entry-level camera, this little Pen is capable of much more things. It worked seamlessly with the issued kit lens 14-42mm that translates to (based on 35mm format) a wide angle focal range of 28mm to 84mm medium telephoto range that is commonly used and it this range covers many photography genres. Having said that, don’t forget this E-PL8 takes all Olympus Zuiko lenses (interchangeable system) and you can expand your photography needs easily!

Alan Photo

I chanced upon a group office workers doing a mid-week workout at Raffles Place (Singapore) beside the Singapore River and I decided to try the E-PL8. Focusing was fast and accurate (I am on P Mode) and I like how this little Pen behaves at a scene like below where 90% of the frame are moving objects. Check out the images below.

Image: Evening Workout by the Singapore River, shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  

Image: Evening Workout by the Singapore River, shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  

Image: Evening Workout by the Singapore River, shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8  

I decided to stay around the river and wait for the sun to set. At this point, light is getting lesser by the minute and the E-PL8 seems to be adjusting itself fine. (metering) Below is a bracketed shot of 3 frames and the shop houses near the centre of the frame was almost black but the bracketed shot “recover” the dark areas well. Aren’t you impressed?
I am.

Image: Evening at the Singapore River, shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8

Image: Blue Hour at Raffles Place, shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8
Image: A Moody shot by the Singapore River, shot by the NEW Olympus E-PL8 with one of the Art Filter. Make a guess which one did I used. 🙂  
Without saying, I am definitely impressed with this little Pen. It handles well, feels solid, shoots well and produce really nice images. Although it will be silly of me to compare the E-PL8 with its bigger siblings like the OM-D EM series, but as an Olympus user, I can assure you the feel, the touch, the operational aspects are similar, it’s just so Olympus.
If you need a “partner” camera to complement your set up, or looking for a reliable travel camera, the new Olympus E-PL8 is for you. Get it.

– AL Lee, Editor.

Thanks You Olympus Singapore for the camera!

For the rest of you, Buy your Olympus E-PL 8 here!

About Olympus
Olympus Singapore Pte Ltd is a subsidiary of Olympus Corporation, headquartered
in Japan. Olympus Singapore Pte Ltd is responsible for the marketing and distribution of Olympus consumer products in Singapore. The Olympus consumer range encompasses still and video imaging products, binoculars and digital audio recorders.
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