The Pen, reincarnated

Olympus has revealed their E-P1 Micro Four Thirds digital camera. Feast your eyes:

I’ve never taken the Four Thirds system very seriously. The sensor is smaller (2× crop) resulting in poor high-ISO performance. They’ve touted this as an advantage because it means they can design a smaller camera. The problem was the Four Thirds cameras weren’t significantly smaller at all. And because the system was completely new, the lens selection was limited.

But this E-P1 does change things. It can’t even be called a DSLR because there’s no mirror or pentaprism. Because there’s no mirror box, the body is significantly smaller than an SLR. It looks like a rangefinder, but it features a TTL viewfinder, albeit electronic.

I still think it’s more a curiosity than anything, but it does feature some very interesting design elements. I have no doubt that this is the direction at least some mid- to high-end digital cameras will take.

And isn’t it deliciously retro?!

Image from Akihabaranews.

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