Nikon W150 vs Olympus E-PM2
The Nikon Coolpix W150 and the Olympus PEN E-PM2 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in April 2019 and September 2012. The W150 is a fixed lens compact, while the E-PM2 is a mirrorless interchangeable lens camera. The cameras are based on a 1/3.1-inch (W150) and a Four Thirds (E-PM2) sensor. The Nikon has a resolution of 13 megapixels, whereas the Olympus provides 15.9 MP.
Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.
Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Nikon Coolpix W150 and the Olympus PEN E-PM2? Which one should you buy? Read on to find out how these two cameras compare with respect to their body size, their imaging sensors, their shooting features, their input-output connections, and their reception by expert reviewers.
The physical size and weight of the Nikon W150 and the Olympus E-PM2 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.
The W150 can be obtained in five different colors (blue, orange, white, flower, resort), while the E-PM2 is available in four color-versions (black, silver, red, white).
If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus E-PM2 is somewhat smaller (4 percent) than the Nikon W150. It is worth mentioning in this context that the W150 is splash and dust resistant, while the E-PM2 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing. More than that, the W150 is water-proof up to 10m and can, thus, be used for underwater photography.
The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete and possibly misleading, as the W150 has a lens built in, whereas the E-PM2 is an interchangeable lens camera that requires a separate lens. Attaching the latter will add extra weight and bulk to the setup. You can compare the optics available for the E-PM2 and their specifications in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog.
The power pack in the W150 can be charged via the USB port, so that it is not always necessary to take the battery charger along when travelling.
The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. If you want to switch the focus of the display and review another camera pair, you can move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible camera comparisons there.
|1.||Nikon W150||110 mm||67 mm||38 mm||177 g||220||Y||Apr 2019||159|
|2.||Olympus E-PM2||110 mm||64 mm||34 mm||269 g||360||n||Sep 2012||499|
|3.||Leica Q2||130 mm||80 mm||92 mm||718 g||370||Y||Mar 2019||4,995|
|4.||Nikon B600||122 mm||82 mm||99 mm||500 g||280||n||Jan 2019||349|
|5.||Nikon A1000||114 mm||72 mm||41 mm||330 g||250||n||Jan 2019||429|
|6.||Nikon P1000||146 mm||119 mm||181 mm||1415 g||250||n||Jul 2018||999|
|7.||Nikon W300||112 mm||66 mm||29 mm||231 g||280||Y||May 2017||389|
|8.||Olympus E-PL7||115 mm||67 mm||38 mm||357 g||350||n||Aug 2014||599|
|9.||Olympus E-P5||122 mm||69 mm||37 mm||420 g||330||n||May 2013||999|
|10.||Olympus E-PL6||111 mm||64 mm||38 mm||325 g||360||n||May 2013||599|
|11.||Olympus E-PL5||111 mm||64 mm||38 mm||325 g||360||n||Sep 2012||599|
|12.||Olympus E-PM1||110 mm||64 mm||34 mm||265 g||330||n||Jun 2011||499|
|13.||Panasonic FT7||117 mm||76 mm||37 mm||319 g||300||Y||May 2018||449|
|14.||Ricoh WG-6||118 mm||66 mm||33 mm||246 g||340||Y||Feb 2019||399|
|15.||Ricoh WG-60||123 mm||62 mm||30 mm||193 g||300||Y||Oct 2018||279|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||59 mm||41 mm||35 mm||132 g||240||Y||Mar 2019||699|
|17.||Sony RX0||59 mm||41 mm||30 mm||110 g||240||Y||Aug 2017||699|
|Notes: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as add-on or interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.|
Any camera decision will naturally be influenced heavily by the price. The manufacturer’s suggested retail prices give an idea on the placement of the camera in the maker’s lineup and the broader market. The W150 was launched at a lower price than the E-PM2, despite having a lens built in. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down.
The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. A large sensor will tend to have larger individual pixels that provide better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixel-units in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.
Of the two cameras under consideration, the Nikon W150 features a 1/3.1-inch sensor and the Olympus E-PM2 a Four Thirds sensor. The sensor area in the E-PM2 is 1306 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 7.4 and 2.0. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.
Technology-wise, both cameras are equipped with CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensors.
With 15.9MP, the E-PM2 offers a higher resolution than the W150 (13MP), but the E-PM2 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 3.76μm versus 1.11μm for the W150) due to its larger sensor. However, the W150 is a much more recent model (by 6 years and 7 months) than the E-PM2, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units. Coming back to sensor resolution, it should be mentioned that the W150 has no anti-alias filter installed, so that it can capture all the detail its sensor resolves.
The resolution advantage of the Olympus E-PM2 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the E-PM2 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 23 x 17.3 inches or 58.5 x 43.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 18.4 x 13.8 inches or 46.8 x 35.1 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 15.4 x 11.5 inches or 39 x 29.3 cm. The corresponding values for the Nikon W150 are 20.8 x 15.6 inches or 52.8 x 39.6 cm for good quality, 16.6 x 12.5 inches or 42.3 x 31.7 cm for very good quality, and 13.9 x 10.4 inches or 35.2 x 26.4 cm for excellent quality prints.
The Nikon Coolpix W150 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 125 to ISO 1600. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus PEN E-PM2 are ISO 100 to ISO 25600 (no boost).
For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.
|2.||Olympus E-PM2||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.7||12.2||932||72|
|3.||Leica Q2||Full Frame||46.7||8368||5584||4K/30p||26.4||13.5||2491||96|
|8.||Olympus E-PL7||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.7||12.4||873||72|
|9.||Olympus E-P5||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.8||12.4||895||72|
|10.||Olympus E-PL6||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||..||..||..||..|
|11.||Olympus E-PL5||Four Thirds||15.9||4608||3456||1080/30p||22.8||12.3||889||72|
|12.||Olympus E-PM1||Four Thirds||12.2||4032||3024||1080/60i||21.0||10.3||499||52|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||1-inch||15.4||4800||3200||4K/30p||..||..||..||..|
Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but also of capturing video footage. The two cameras under consideration both have sensors whose read-out speed is fast enough to capture moving pictures, and both provide the same movie specifications (1080/30p).
Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The W150 and the E-PM2 are similar in the sense that neither of the two has a viewfinder. The images are, thus, framed using live view on the rear LCD. That said, the E-PM2 can be equipped with an optional viewfinder – the VF-4. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Nikon W150 and Olympus E-PM2 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.
|1.||Nikon W150||none||n||2.7 / 230||fixed||n||1/2000s||4.7||Y||n|
|2.||Olympus E-PM2||optional||n||3.0 / 460||fixed||Y||1/4000s||8.0||n||Y|
|3.||Leica Q2||3680||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||Y||1/2000s||20.0||n||Y|
|4.||Nikon B600||none||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/4000s||7.4||Y||Y|
|5.||Nikon A1000||1166||n||3.0 / 1036||tilting||Y||1/4000s||7.0||Y||Y|
|6.||Nikon P1000||2359||n||3.2 / 921||swivel||n||1/4000s||7.0||Y||Y|
|7.||Nikon W300||none||n||3.0 / 921||fixed||n||1/4000s||7.0||Y||Y|
|8.||Olympus E-PL7||optional||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0||n||Y|
|9.||Olympus E-P5||optional||n||3.0 / 1037||tilting||Y||1/8000s||9.0||Y||Y|
|10.||Olympus E-PL6||optional||n||3.0 / 460||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0||n||Y|
|11.||Olympus E-PL5||optional||n||3.0 / 460||tilting||Y||1/4000s||8.0||n||Y|
|12.||Olympus E-PM1||optional||n||3.0 / 460||fixed||n||1/4000s||5.5||n||Y|
|13.||Panasonic FT7||1170||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||n||1/1300s||10.0||Y||Y|
|14.||Ricoh WG-6||none||n||3.0 / 1040||fixed||n||1/4000s||1.0||Y||n|
|15.||Ricoh WG-60||none||n||2.7 / 230||fixed||n||1/4000s||8.0||Y||n|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||none||n||1.5 / 230||tilting||n||..||5.5||n||n|
|17.||Sony RX0||none||n||1.5 / 230||fixed||n||..||5.5||n||n|
One difference between the cameras concerns the presence of an on-board flash. The W150 has one, while the E-PM2 does not. While the built-in flash of the W150 is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light.
The reported shutter speed information refers to the use of the mechanical shutter. Yet, some cameras only have an electronic shutter, while others have an electronic shutter in addition to a mechanical one. In fact, the W150 is one of those camera that have an additional electronic shutter, which makes completely silent shooting possible. However, this mode is less suitable for photographing moving objects (risk of rolling shutter) or shooting under artificial light sources (risk of flickering).
Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the W150 and the E-PM2 write their files to SDXC cards. The E-PM2 supports UHS-I cards (Ultra High Speed data transfer of up to 104 MB/s), while the W150 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.
For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Nikon Coolpix W150 and Olympus PEN E-PM2 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.
Mic / Speaker
|1.||Nikon W150||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|2.||Olympus E-PM2||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|3.||Leica Q2||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||-||-||Y||-||Y|
|4.||Nikon B600||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|5.||Nikon A1000||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|6.||Nikon P1000||Y||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|7.||Nikon W300||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|8.||Olympus E-PL7||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|9.||Olympus E-P5||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|10.||Olympus E-PL6||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|11.||Olympus E-PL5||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|12.||Olympus E-PM1||Y||stereo / mono||-||-||mini||2.0||-||-||-|
|13.||Panasonic FT7||-||stereo / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||-|
|14.||Ricoh WG-6||-||mono / mono||-||-||micro||3.0||-||-||-|
|15.||Ricoh WG-60||-||mono / mono||-||-||micro||2.0||-||-||-|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||-||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
|17.||Sony RX0||-||stereo / mono||Y||-||micro||2.0||Y||-||Y|
It is notable that the W150 offers wifi support, while the E-PM2 does not. Wifi can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location.
The W150 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Nikon. In contrast, the E-PM2 has been discontinued (but can be found pre-owned on eBay). There has not been a direct replacement model for the E-PM2 from Olympus. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Nikon and Olympus websites.
So what is the bottom line? Which of the two cameras – the Nikon W150 or the Olympus E-PM2 – has the upper hand? Is one clearly better than the other? The listing below highlights the relative strengths of the two models.
Arguments in favor of the Nikon Coolpix W150:
- Maximized detail: Lacks an anti-alias filter to exploit the sensor's full resolution potential.
- Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
- Ready to shoot: Has a lens built-in, whereas the E-PM2 requires a separate lens.
- Less heavy: Is lighter even though it comes with a built-in lens (unlike the E-PM2).
- Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
- Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
- Water-proof: Is rugged and sealed and can thus be used for underwater photography (up to 10m).
- Easier fill-in: Is equipped with a small onboard flash to brighten deep shadow areas.
- Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
- Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
- More affordable: Was introduced at a lower price, despite coming with a built-in lens.
- More modern: Reflects 6 years and 7 months of technical progress since the E-PM2 launch.
Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-PM2:
- More detail: Has more megapixels (15.9 vs 13MP), which boosts linear resolution by 11%.
- Better moiré control: Has an anti-alias filter to avoid artificial patterns to appear in images.
- Better image quality: Features bigger pixels on a larger sensor for higher quality imaging.
- Richer colors: The pixel size advantage translates into images with better, more accurate colors.
- More dynamic range: Larger pixels capture a wider spectrum of light and dark details.
- Better low-light sensitivity: Larger pixels means good image quality even under poor lighting.
- More framing options: Can be equipped with a hotshoe-mounted accessory-viewfinder.
- Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (3.0" vs 2.7") for image review and settings control.
- More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (460k vs 230k dots).
- Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
- Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/4000s vs 1/2000s) to freeze action.
- Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (8 vs 4.7 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
- More flexible: Takes interchangeable lenses and can thus be used with specialty optics.
- Longer lasting: Gets more shots (360 versus 220) out of a single battery charge.
- Sharper images: Has stabilization technology built-in to reduce the impact of hand-shake.
- Better lighting: Features a hotshoe and can thus hold and trigger an external flash gun.
- Faster buffer clearing: Has an SD card interface that supports the UHS-I standard.
- More heavily discounted: Has been around for much longer (launched in September 2012).
If the number of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a guide, the E-PM2 is the clear winner of the contest (18 : 12 points). However, the relevance of individual strengths will vary across photographers, so that you might want to apply your own weighing scheme to the summary points when reflecting and deciding on a new camera. A professional wildlife photographer will view the differences between cameras in a way that diverges from the perspective of a family photog, and a person interested in architecture has distinct needs from a sports shooter. Hence, the decision which camera is best and worth buying is often a very personal one.
How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Nikon W150 and the Olympus E-PM2 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Travel-Zoom Camera and Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listings whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.
In any case, while the specs-based evaluation of cameras can be instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the W150 or the E-PM2 perform in practice. User reviews, such as those found at amazon, can sometimes inform about these issues, but such feedback is often incomplete, inconsistent, and biased.
This is where reviews by experts come in. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (amateurphotographer [AP], cameralabs [CL], digitalcameraworld [DCW], dpreview [DPR], ephotozine [EPZ], photographyblog [PB]). As can be seen, the professional reviewers agree in many cases on the quality of different cameras, but sometimes their assessments diverge, reinforcing the earlier point that a camera decision is often a very personal choice.
|1.||Nikon W150||..||+||..||..||3.5/5||3/5||Apr 2019||159|
|2.||Olympus E-PM2||3/5||..||..||77/100||5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||499|
|3.||Leica Q2||..||..||..||84/100||4.5/5||4/5||Mar 2019||4,995|
|4.||Nikon B600||..||+||..||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2019||349|
|5.||Nikon A1000||..||+ +||3.5/5||..||3.5/5||3/5||Jan 2019||429|
|6.||Nikon P1000||..||+||3.5/5||73/100||3.5/5||3.5/5||Jul 2018||999|
|7.||Nikon W300||..||+||..||..||4/5||4/5||May 2017||389|
|8.||Olympus E-PL7||4/5||+||..||..||5/5||4/5||Aug 2014||599|
|9.||Olympus E-P5||5/5||+ +||..||78/100||4.5/5||5/5||May 2013||999|
|10.||Olympus E-PL6||..||..||..||..||..||..||May 2013||599|
|11.||Olympus E-PL5||3/5||+ +||..||..||4.5/5||4.5/5||Sep 2012||599|
|12.||Olympus E-PM1||..||86/100||..||71/100||4.5/5||4.5/5||Jun 2011||499|
|13.||Panasonic FT7||..||+||..||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||May 2018||449|
|14.||Ricoh WG-6||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||3.5/5||Feb 2019||399|
|15.||Ricoh WG-60||..||..||..||..||..||..||Oct 2018||279|
|16.||Sony RX0 II||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||4/5||Mar 2019||699|
|17.||Sony RX0||..||..||..||..||3.5/5||4/5||Aug 2017||699|
|Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (..) not available.|
Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. Hence, a score should always be seen in the context of the camera's market launch date and its price, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.
Other camera comparisons
Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you would like to check on the differences and similarities of other camera models, just make your choice using the following search menu. There is also a set of direct links to comparison reviews that other users of the CAM-parator app explored.
- Canon 6D vs Olympus E-PM2
- Canon M vs Nikon W150
- Canon M10 vs Nikon W150
- Canon T7 vs Olympus E-PM2
- Fujifilm X-T4 vs Olympus E-PM2
- Leica X-U Typ 113 vs Nikon W150
- Nikon D5200 vs Olympus E-PM2
- Nikon D5300 vs Nikon W150
- Nikon D80 vs Olympus E-PM2
- Nikon W150 vs Olympus TG-5
- Nikon W150 vs Panasonic FZ200
- Olympus E-PM2 vs Sony A58
Specifications: Nikon W150 vs Olympus E-PM2
Below is a side-by-side comparison of the specs of the two cameras to facilitate a quick review of their differences and common features.
|Camera Model||Nikon W150||Olympus E-PM2|
|Camera Type||Fixed lens compact camera||Mirrorless system camera|
|Camera Lens||30-90mm f/3.3-5.9||Micro Four Thirds lenses|
|Launch Date||April 2019||September 2012|
|Launch Price||USD 159||USD 499|
|Sensor Specs||Nikon W150||Olympus E-PM2|
|Sensor Format||1/3.1" Sensor||Four Thirds Sensor|
|Sensor Size||4.7 x 3.5 mm||17.3 x 13.0 mm|
|Sensor Area||16.45 mm2||224.9 mm2|
|Sensor Diagonal||5.9 mm||21.6 mm|
|Sensor Resolution||13 Megapixels||15.9 Megapixels|
|Image Resolution||4160 x 3120 pixels||4608 x 3456 pixels|
|Pixel Pitch||1.11 μm||3.76 μm|
|Pixel Density||78.90 MP/cm2||7.08 MP/cm2|
|Moiré control||no AA filter||Anti-Alias filter|
|Movie Capability||1080/30p Video||1080/30p Video|
|ISO Setting||125 - 1,600 ISO||100 - 25,600 ISO|
|DXO Sensor Quality (score)||..||72|
|DXO Color Depth (bits)||..||22.7|
|DXO Dynamic Range (EV)||..||12.2|
|DXO Low Light (ISO)||..||932|
|Screen Specs||Nikon W150||Olympus E-PM2|
|Viewfinder Type||no viewfinder||Viewfinder optional|
|LCD Framing||Live View||Live View|
|Rear LCD Size||2.7inch||3.0inch|
|LCD Resolution||230k dots||460k dots|
|LCD Attachment||Fixed screen||Fixed screen|
|Touch Input||no Touchscreen||Touchscreen|
|Shooting Specs||Nikon W150||Olympus E-PM2|
|Focus System||Contrast-detect AF||Contrast-detect AF|
|Continuous Shooting||4.7 shutter flaps/s||8 shutter flaps/s|
|Electronic Shutter||up to 1/2000s||no E-Shutter|
|Image Stabilization||no shake reduction||In-body stabilization|
|Fill Flash||Built-in Flash||no On-Board Flash|
|Storage Medium||SDXC cards||SDXC cards|
|Second Storage Option||Single card slot||Single card slot|
|UHS card support||no||UHS-I|
|Connectivity Specs||Nikon W150||Olympus E-PM2|
|External Flash||no Hotshoe||Hotshoe|
|USB Connector||USB 2.0||USB 2.0|
|HDMI Port||micro HDMI||mini HDMI|
|Wifi Support||Wifi built-in||no Wifi|
|Bluetooth Support||Bluetooth built-in||no Bluetooth|
|Body Specs||Nikon W150||Olympus E-PM2|
|Environmental Sealing||Waterproof body (10m)||not weather sealed|
|Battery Life (CIPA)||220 shots per charge||360 shots per charge|
|In-Camera Charging||USB charging||no USB charging|
110 x 67 x 38 mm
(4.3 x 2.6 x 1.5 in)
110 x 64 x 34 mm
(4.3 x 2.5 x 1.3 in)
|Camera Weight||177 g (6.2 oz)||269 g (9.5 oz)|
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