Olympus Pen E PL7 vs PL8

Cameras are meant to capture still images or videos and both but for some people, the styling of the camera is also important and for those who are attracted to the retro style cameras, Olympus PEN E PL7 Vs PL8 are two interesting picks you can consider. These cameras are high performing for an option in the price range while also looking great on you but, slightly different as well. If you wonder which of the two will be the better choice, let’s see the comparison below. 

In comparison, we are going to talk about:

  • What Affects Image Quality
  • What are Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8
  • How are the Design of Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8
  • How are the Specs of Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8
  • How are the Image Quality of Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8
  • How are the Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 for Video Recording
  • Olympus PEN E PL7 Vs PL8

Camera and Image Quality

People nowadays may be taking pictures more than ever because with the smartphone we can capture the pictures anytime we want. They can record video as well and especially those with flagship phones, we can even take high-quality photos with the compact device. When it comes to cameras, usually we are talking about the image quality or how the camera is in the usage but, depending on the users there are probably other factors to consider because not all of us like the same device as well as budget to spend. 

In general, the camera quality is decided by the sensor which is what replaces film in modern digital cameras. This part is what capture your image and depending on the camera, they can be full-size 36 x 24 mm or cropped which is smaller like APS-H which is found in some Canon cameras or APS-C which is smaller and is found on more entry-level or mid-range cameras from Nikon, Pentax, Sony, and many more. The larger sensors will also make the camera more expensive.

The next crucial part of your camera that will directly affect image quality is the lens itself. You can find cameras with fixed lenses such as Fujifilm X E4 vs X100V or those with interchangeable lenses from so many different manufacturers. If you choose the latter, we can mount different lenses on the camera depending on the need. The way lenses affect image quality is because before arriving at the sensor the light must pass the optic first so the overall quality of the glass will decide the image it produces.

For example lens affects the depth of field of your picture or the part that you want to be focusing on. As we are capturing something, we will want to focus on a certain part only and this is different for every lens as it is affected by the maximum aperture. 

Aperture itself is simply the opening of the lens in which it lets light enter the construction. In general the larger the aperture value of your lens, the smaller the opening so the less light gets into the lens. The smaller value of the aperture will allow more light to enter the lens and it means shallower depth of field as well while at the same time larger aperture also allows for more focused image. Depending on the aesthetic of your photos, our choice may vary.

Olympus Pen E PL7Olympus Pen E PL8
Product Dimensions4.5 x 2 x 2.6 inches
3.8 x 4.6 x 2.7 inches
Shipping Weight12 ounces
1.1 pounds
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About Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8

Of course there is more to consider in a camera such as the handling and the price point as well as the focus of the device because not all cameras are equally capable and not all of us will be using the camera for the same purposes. If you are here then we assume that the design of the camera also matters and while cameras are usually very much the same to each other in terms of design, some are also much more attractive.

Fujifilm is one of the most popular options with their retro cameras and also those on the more common design but there are other alternatives like Olympus. This brand is probably more well-known for their retro cameras instead of the high-end options or the most advanced models we have today yet, this is where the brand’s charm is or if you are a hobbyist who wants to have a dedicated camera to start the journey with, we also think they have lots of beginner-friendly options.

For those who are in the market for a camera that is not only capturing beautiful photos but also looks beautiful from the outside, Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 are two good options to consider. These attractive cameras are very popular for how they look because of the retro design that is eye-catchy when you are travelling with it while also very capable when it comes to producing good quality photos. They are also beginner-friendly for the low price point and ease of use.

Both cameras are actually quite similar and we do think the PL8 is not putting so much effort into upgrading the PL7 which was around one year old when it was first launched. Today, the camera is at least 5 years old meaning the system is not the fastest you can get by today’s standard but, the focus of those who will get these cameras is not only the picture but also the styling or how the camera looks. In comparison they are so similar to each other that you can go amazing with any of the two.

Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 Design

Before checking what the Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 can offer, let’s see the unit first and here is one of the things that set the two apart. In comparison, the noticeable difference between the two is their grip because PL8 is smaller compared to the PL7. These are interchangeable lens cameras so you can buy the body only or with a lens kit for a higher price point. The layout for control stays the same so if you are familiar with the older camera, the PL8 will make you feel right at home.

Besides how these cameras look, we love their rear display because they are very easy to use and can be tilted to face the front as well when you will use the camera for self-portrait or recording. The screen size is the same 3 inches type with the same quality and is touch sensitive. These cameras come in a few shades with PL7 available in silver top, full white, and full black while the PL8 keeps the top silver but combines brown in the collection.

Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 Specs

Moving further, let’s see what Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 can offer on the most important part but, as it has been mentioned above, the two are very similar to each other and this is why you will see the same specs as well from these cameras. They are the same micro four thirds sensor or 17.3 x 13mm in size with an effective pixel of 16MP. They use CMOS and with a maximum resolution of 4608 x 3456 on the sensor.

Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 Image Quality

Next is for the image quality but both cameras have the same core so you can expect to see the same result as well. In general the photos look pretty from these cameras and they are great for stills like road photography and outdoor applications as long as there is adequate lighting. The sensor is not very capable for low light photo shooting but we do think they are suitable as travel cameras and typical casual usage such as for stationary subjects.

What’s slightly improved in the PL8 from the PL7 is the burst shooting or continuous drive in which the older camera is rated at 8.0fps when the image stabilization is turned off while now the camera is slightly faster at 8.5fps. It is not a meaningful upgrade but it is still there if you need to capture an object that is moving so we can take the movement more precisely or just choose from the several photos that have been taken.

Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8 for Video Recording

Lastly we want to talk about the recording function of Olympus PEN E PL7 and PL8. Both are useful for stills and video function but are also very limited because the highest resolution you can use them for is 1080p which is quite low for today’s standard and it is also 30fps for all the recording resolutions. In comparison, it is very similar to the video that we are recording from a smartphone. They also have an internal stereo microphone but no external port to attach one.

Olympus Pen E PL7 vs PL8

Both cameras are good for beginners or enthusiasts who love the aesthetic of Olympus PED E PL7 and PL8 or similar retro cameras. In terms of ability they are suitable for entry-level and are not very reliable if what you chase is higher image quality or versatility for video recording, especially if you plan to professionally upload or using it but for the casual users who love to take pictures of their travel journey or anyone who want to have an attractive camera, we do think they are equally promising options.

- 16MP Live MOS Sensor
- 3-Axis In-Body Image Stabilization
- Built-In Wi-Fi
- 81 Point FAST AF with Small Target AF
- Compact size with stylish, distinctive design
- 3-Axis in body image stabilization
- High-Speed 8.5 frames per second sequential shooting
- Supersonic wave filter sensor dust reduction system


You can go well with any of these cameras based on which seems to fit in your application or preference the most. Personally we recommend any of the two that attracts your own interest because both are attractive but the design or color is actually prettier on the PL8.

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