PW

Olympus E-1 vs E-330

The Olympus E-1 and the Olympus Evolt E-330 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in June 2003 and January 2006. Both are DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) cameras that are equipped with a Four Thirds sensor. The E-1 has a resolution of 4.9 megapixels, whereas the E-330 provides 7.4 MP.

Below is an overview of the main specs of the two cameras as a starting point for the comparison.

Headline Specifications
Olympus E-1   Olympus E-330
Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
Four Thirds lenses Four Thirds lenses
4.9 MP, Four Thirds Sensor 7.4 MP, Four Thirds Sensor
no Video no Video
ISO 100-800 (100-3200) ISO 100-400 (100-1600)
Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
1.8" LCD, 134k dots 2.5" LCD, 215k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Tilting screen (not touch-sensitive)
3 shutter flaps per second 3 shutter flaps per second
Weathersealed bodyNot weather sealed
750 shots per battery charge750 shots per battery charge
141 x 104 x 81 mm, 738 g 140 x 87 x 72 mm, 637 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Olympus E-1 and the Olympus Evolt E-330? 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.

Body comparison: Olympus E-1 vs E-330

The physical size and weight of the Olympus E-1 and the Olympus E-330 are illustrated in the side-by-side display below. The two cameras are presented according to their relative size. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are available. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Size Olympus E-1 vs Olympus E-330
Compare E-1 versus E-330 top
Comparison E-1 or E-330 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Olympus E-330 is notably smaller (17 percent) than the Olympus E-1. Moreover, the E-330 is markedly lighter (14 percent) than the E-1. It is worth mentioning in this context that the E-1 is splash and dust resistant, while the E-330 does not feature any corresponding weather-sealing.

The above size and weight comparisons are to some extent incomplete since they do not consider the interchangeable lenses that both of these cameras require. In this particular case, both cameras feature the same lens mount, so that they can use the same lenses. You can compare the optics available in the Four Thirds Lens Catalog.

The following table provides a synthesis of the main physical specifications of the two cameras and other similar ones. In case you want to display and compare another camera duo, just click on the right or left arrow next to the camera that you would like to inspect. Alternatively, you can also use the CAM-parator to select your camera combination among a larger number of options.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Olympus E-1» 5.6 in 4.1 in 3.2 in 26.0 oz 750 Y Jun 2003 1,699- i Olympus E-1
 
Olympus E-330« 5.5 in 3.4 in 2.8 in 22.5 oz 750 n Jan 2006 999- i Olympus E-330
 
Canon 6D Mark II« » 5.7 in 4.4 in 3.0 in 27.0 oz 1200 Y Jun 2017 1,999 i i Canon 6D Mark II
 
Canon 7D« » 5.8 in 4.4 in 2.9 in 30.3 oz 800 Y Sep 2009 1,699- i Canon 7D
 
Canon XT« » 5.0 in 3.7 in 2.5 in 19.0 oz 400 n Feb 2005 899- i Canon XT
 
Leica Digilux 3« » 5.7 in 3.4 in 3.0 in 21.4 oz 750 n Sep 2006 1,499- i Leica Digilux 3
 
Nikon D500« » 5.8 in 4.5 in 3.2 in 30.3 oz 1240 Y Jan 2016 1,999 i i Nikon D500
 
Nikon D610« » 5.6 in 4.4 in 3.2 in 30.0 oz 900 Y Oct 2013 1,999 i i Nikon D610
 
Nikon D7000« » 5.2 in 4.1 in 3.0 in 27.5 oz 1050 Y Sep 2010 1,499- i Nikon D7000
 
Olympus E-5« » 5.6 in 4.6 in 3.0 in 30.8 oz 750 Y Sep 2010 1,699- i Olympus E-5
 
Olympus E-3« » 5.6 in 4.6 in 3.0 in 30.9 oz 750 Y Oct 2007 1,699- i Olympus E-3
 
Olympus E-500« » 5.1 in 3.7 in 2.6 in 16.9 oz 750 n Sep 2005 599- i Olympus E-500
 
Olympus E-300« » 5.8 in 3.3 in 2.5 in 22.0 oz 750 n Sep 2004 799- i Olympus E-300
 
Panasonic L1« » 5.7 in 3.4 in 2.5 in 21.4 oz 750 n Feb 2006 999- i Panasonic L1
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The price is, of course, an important factor in any camera decision. 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 E-330 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 41 percent) than the E-1, which puts it into a different market segment. Normally, street prices remain initially close to the MSRP, but after a couple of months, the first discounts appear. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

 

Sensor comparison: Olympus E-1 vs E-330

The imaging sensor is at the core of digital cameras and its size is one of the main determining factors of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels 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 tend to be more expensive and lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Both cameras under consideration feature a Four Thirds sensor and have a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 2.0. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the review cameras among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability. Both cameras feature a native aspect ratio (sensor width to sensor height) of 4:3.

Olympus E-1 and Olympus E-330 sensor measures

While the two cameras under review share the same sensor size, the E-330 offers a higher resolution of 7.4 megapixels, compared with 4.9 MP of the E-1. This megapixels advantage translates into a 23 percent gain in linear resolution. On the other hand, these sensor specs imply that the E-330 has a higher pixel density and a smaller size of the individual pixel (with a pixel pitch of 5.51μm versus 6.78μm for the E-1). However, it should be noted that the E-330 is much more recent (by 2 years and 7 months) than the E-1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that compensate for the smaller pixel size.

The resolution advantage of the Olympus E-330 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the E-330 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 15.7 x 11.8 inch or 39.8 x 29.9 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 12.5 x 9.4 inch or 31.9 x 23.9 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 10.5 x 7.8 inch or 26.6 x 19.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Olympus E-1 are 12.8 x 9.6 inch or 32.5 x 24.4 cm for good quality, 10.2 x 7.7 inch or 26 x 19.5 cm for very good quality, and 8.5 x 6.4 inch or 21.7 x 16.3 cm for excellent quality prints.

The Olympus E-1 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 800, which can be extended to ISO 100-3200. The corresponding ISO settings for the Olympus Evolt E-330 are ISO 100 to ISO 400, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 100-1600.

E-1 versus E-330 MP

Since 2007, DXO Mark has published sensor performance measurements that have been derived using a consistent methodology. 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 adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Olympus E-1» Four Thirds 4.9 2560 1920-----Olympus E-1
 
Olympus E-330« Four Thirds 7.4 3136 2352-----Olympus E-330
 
Canon 6D Mark II« » Full Frame 26.0 6240 41601080/60p24.411.9286285Canon 6D Mark II
 
Canon 7D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p22.011.785466Canon 7D
 
Canon XT« » APS-C 8.0 3456 2304-21.810.863760Canon XT
 
Leica Digilux 3« » Four Thirds 7.4 3136 2352-----Leica Digilux 3
 
Nikon D500« » APS-C 20.7 5568 37124K/30p24.014.0132483Nikon D500
 
Nikon D610« » Full Frame 24.2 6016 40161080/30p25.114.4292594Nikon D610
 
Nikon D7000« » APS-C 16.1 4928 326410800/24p23.513.9116780Nikon D7000
 
Olympus E-5« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 3024720/30p21.610.551956Olympus E-5
 
Olympus E-3« » Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736-21.610.557156Olympus E-3
 
Olympus E-500« » Four Thirds 8.0 3264 2448-----Olympus E-500
 
Olympus E-300« » Four Thirds 8.0 3264 2448-----Olympus E-300
 
Panasonic L1« » Four Thirds 7.4 3136 2352-----Panasonic L1
The E-330 offers Live View, so that it can project the live image that the sensor receives onto the rear screen for framing. The E-1 lacks this capability. Both cameras are still-image focused and cannot record videos.
 

Feature comparison: Olympus E-1 vs E-330

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The E-1 and the E-330 are similar in the sense that both have an optical viewfinder. The latter is useful for getting a clear image for framing even in brightly lit environments. The viewfinder in the E-1 offers a wider field of view (100%) than the one in the E-330 (95%), so that a larger proportion of the captured image is visible in the finder. In addition, the viewfinder of the E-1 has a higher magnification (0.48x vs 0.465x), so that the size of the image transmitted appears closer to the size seen with the naked human eye. The following table reports on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Olympus E-1, the Olympus E-330, and comparable cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Olympus E-1»optical Y 1.8 134 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 n n Olympus E-1
 
Olympus E-330«optical n 2.5 215 tilting n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Olympus E-330
 
Canon 6D Mark II« »optical Y 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 6.5 n n Canon 6D Mark II
 
Canon 7D« »optical Y 3.0 920 fixed n 1/8000s 8.0 Y n Canon 7D
 
Canon XT« »optical n 1.8 115 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Canon XT
 
Leica Digilux 3« »optical n 2.5 207 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Leica Digilux 3
 
Nikon D500« »optical Y 3.2 2359 tilting Y 1/8000s 10.0 n n Nikon D500
 
Nikon D610« »optical Y 3.2 921 fixed n 1/4000s 6.0 Y n Nikon D610
 
Nikon D7000« »optical Y 3.0 921 fixed n 1/8000s 6.0 Y n Nikon D7000
 
Olympus E-5« »optical Y 3.0 920 swivel n 1/8000s 5.0 Y Y Olympus E-5
 
Olympus E-3« »optical Y 2.5 230 swivel n 1/8000s 5.0 Y Y Olympus E-3
 
Olympus E-500« »optical n 2.5 215 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n Olympus E-500
 
Olympus E-300« »optical n 1.8 134 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n Olympus E-300
 
Panasonic L1« »optical n 2.5 207 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Panasonic L1

One feature that is present on the E-1, but is missing on the E-330 is a top-level LCD. While being, of course, smaller than the rear screen, the control panel conveys some of the essential shooting information and can be convenient for quick and easy settings verification.

Concerning the storage of imaging data, both the E-1 and the E-330 write their files to Compact Flash or xD Picture cards. Both cameras feature dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails.

 

Connectivity comparison: Olympus E-1 vs E-330

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 Olympus E-1 and Olympus Evolt E-330 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Olympus E-1»Y-----2.0---Olympus E-1
 
Olympus E-330«Y-----2.0---Olympus E-330
 
Canon 6D Mark II« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0YYYCanon 6D Mark II
 
Canon 7D« »Ymono-Y-mini2.0---Canon 7D
 
Canon XT« »Y-----2.0---Canon XT
 
Leica Digilux 3« »Ystereomono---2.0---Leica Digilux 3
 
Nikon D500« »YstereomonoYYmini3.0YYYNikon D500
 
Nikon D610« »YmonomonoYYmini2.0---Nikon D610
 
Nikon D7000« »YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D7000
 
Olympus E-5« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-5
 
Olympus E-3« »Y-----2.0---Olympus E-3
 
Olympus E-500« »Y-----2.0---Olympus E-500
 
Olympus E-300« »Y-----2.0---Olympus E-300
 
Panasonic L1« »Y-----2.0---Panasonic L1

Studio photographers will appreciate that the Olympus E-1 (unlike the E-330) features a PC Sync socket, so that professional strobe lights can be controlled by the camera.

Both the E-1 and the E-330 have been discontinued, but can regularly be found used on eBay. The E-1 was replaced by the Olympus E-3, while the E-330 does not have a direct successor. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Olympus website.


Review summary: Olympus E-1 vs E-330

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Olympus E-1 and the Olympus E-330? Which camera is better? Below is a summary of the relative strengths of each of the two contestants.


Reasons to prefer the Olympus E-1:

  • More complete view: Has a viewfinder with a larger field of view (100% vs 95%).
  • Larger viewfinder image: Features a viewfinder with a higher magnification (0.48x vs 0.465x).
  • Easier setting verification: Features an LCD display on top to control shooting parameters.
  • Better sealing: Is weather sealed to enable shooting in dusty or wet environments.
  • Better studio light control: Has a PC Sync socket to connect to professional strobe lights.
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in June 2003).


Arguments in favor of the Olympus Evolt E-330:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (7.4 vs 4.9MP), which boosts linear resolution by 23%.
  • Larger screen: Has a bigger rear LCD (2.5" vs 1.8") for image review and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (215k vs 134k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • More compact: Is smaller (140x87mm vs 141x104mm) and will fit more readily into a bag.
  • Less heavy: Has a lower weight (by 101g or 14 percent) and is thus easier to take along.
  • Easier fill-in: Has a small integrated flash to brighten shadows of backlit subjects.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (41 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More modern: Reflects 2 years and 7 months of technical progress since the E-1 launch.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the E-330 emerges as the winner of the match-up (9 : 6 points). However, the pertinence of the various camera strengths will differ across photographers, so that you might want to weigh individual camera traits according to their importance for your own imaging needs before making a camera decision. 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.

E-1 06:09 E-330

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Olympus E-1 and the Olympus E-330 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best DSLR Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of technical specifications can provide a useful overview of the capabilities of different cameras, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the E-1 or the E-330 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.

Expert reviews: Olympus E-1 vs E-330

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The following table reports the overall ratings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, and photographyblog). 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.

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Olympus E-1»-+oo- Jun 2003 1,699- i Olympus E-1
 
Olympus E-330«-+o3.5/5- Jan 2006 999- i Olympus E-330
 
Canon 6D Mark II« »+80/1004.5/54/54/5 Jun 2017 1,999 i i Canon 6D Mark II
 
Canon 7D« »+ +84/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Sep 2009 1,699- i Canon 7D
 
Canon XT« »80/100+ +oo- Feb 2005 899- i Canon XT
 
Leica Digilux 3« »----- Sep 2006 1,499- i Leica Digilux 3
 
Nikon D500« »+ +91/1004.5/55/55/5 Jan 2016 1,999 i i Nikon D500
 
Nikon D610« »+ +87/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Oct 2013 1,999 i i Nikon D610
 
Nikon D7000« »-80/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Sep 2010 1,499- i Nikon D7000
 
Olympus E-5« »-75/1004/5-4.5/5 Sep 2010 1,699- i Olympus E-5
 
Olympus E-3« »88/100+ +oo4/5 Oct 2007 1,699- i Olympus E-3
 
Olympus E-500« »76/100+ +--- Sep 2005 599- i Olympus E-500
 
Olympus E-300« »-+oo4.5/5 Sep 2004 799- i Olympus E-300
 
Panasonic L1« »85/100+-o3.5/5 Feb 2006 999- i Panasonic L1
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.

The review scores listed above should be treated with care, though. The assessments were made in relation to similar cameras of the same technological generation. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and comparisons of ratings among very different cameras or across long time periods have little meaning. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Olympus E-1:
Check Ebay offers
Olympus E-330:
Check Ebay offers

Other camera comparisons

Did this review help to inform your camera decision process? In case you are interested in seeing how other cameras pair up, just make your choice using the following search menu. As an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

~

    Specifications: Olympus E-1 vs Olympus E-330

    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 Specifications
    Camera Model Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Four Thirds lenses Four Thirds lenses
    Launch Date June 2003 January 2006
    Launch Price USD 1699 USD 999
    Sensor Specs Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
    Sensor Technology CCD CMOS
    Sensor Format Four Thirds Sensor Four Thirds Sensor
    Sensor Size 17.3 x 13.0 mm 17.3 x 13.0 mm
    Sensor Area 224.9 mm2 224.9 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 21.6 mm 21.6 mm
    Crop Factor 2.0x 2.0x
    Sensor Resolution 4.9 Megapixels 7.4 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 2560 x 1920 pixels 3136 x 2352 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 6.78 μm 5.51 μm
    Pixel Density 2.19 MP/cm2 3.28 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability no Video no Video
    ISO Setting 100-800 ISO 100-400 ISO
    ISO Boost 100-3200 ISO 100-1600 ISO
    Image Processor TruePic TruePic
    Screen Specs Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
    Viewfinder Type Optical viewfinder Optical viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100% 95%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.48x 0.465x
    Top-Level Screen Control Panel no Top Display
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 1.8 inch 2.5 inch
    LCD Resolution 134k dots 215k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Tilting screen
    Shooting Specs Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF Phase-detect AF
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 3 shutter flaps/s
    Fill Flash no On-Board Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium CF or XD cards CF or XD cards
    Second Storage Option Dual card slots Dual card slots
    Connectivity Specs Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    Studio Flash PC Sync socket no PC Sync
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port no HDMI no HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi no Wifi
    Body Specs Olympus E-1 Olympus E-330
    Environmental SealingWeathersealed bodyNot weather sealed
    Battery Type BLM-1 power pack BLM-1 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)750 shots per charge750 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 141 x 104 x 81 mm
    (5.6 x 4.1 x 3.2 in)
    140 x 87 x 72 mm
    (5.5 x 3.4 x 2.8 in)
    Camera Weight 738 g (26.0 oz) 637 g (22.5 oz)

    Did you notice an error on this page? If so, please get in touch, so that we can correct the information.

    You are here  »   »