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Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

The Olympus PEN E-P1 and the Sony Alpha A9 are two digital cameras that were announced, respectively, in June 2009 and April 2017. Both the E-P1 and the A9 are mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras that are based on a Four Thirds (E-P1) and a full frame (A9) sensor. The Olympus has a resolution of 12.2 megapixels, whereas the Sony provides 24 MP.

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

Headline Specifications
Olympus E-P1   Sony A9
Olympus E-P1 Sony A9
Mirrorless system camera Mirrorless system camera
Micro Four Thirds lenses Sony E mount lenses
12.2 MP, Four Thirds Sensor 24 MP, Full Frame Sensor
720/30p Video 4K/30p Video
ISO 100-6400 ISO 100-51200 (50-204800)
No viewfinder, LCD framing Electronic viewfinder (3686k dots)
3.0" LCD, 230k dots 3.0" LCD, 1440k dots
Fixed screen (not touch-sensitive) Tilting touchscreen
3 shutter flaps per second 20 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilizationIn-body stabilization
Not weather sealedWeathersealed body
300 shots per battery charge650 shots per battery charge
121 x 70 x 36 mm, 355 g 127 x 96 x 63 mm, 673 g

Going beyond this snapshot of core features and characteristics, what are the differences between the Olympus PEN E-P1 and the Sony Alpha A9? 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-P1 vs Sony A9

An illustration of the physical size and weight of the Olympus E-P1 and the Sony A9 is provided 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 size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

The E-P1 can be obtained in three different colors (black, silver, white), while the A9 is only available in black.

Size Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9
Compare E-P1 versus A9 top
Comparison E-P1 or A9 rear

If the front view area (width x height) of the cameras is taken as an aggregate measure of their size, the Sony A9 is considerably larger (44 percent) than the Olympus E-P1. Moreover, the A9 is substantially heavier (90 percent) than the E-P1. It is noteworthy in this context that the A9 is splash and dust-proof, while the E-P1 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. A larger imaging sensor will tend to go along with bigger and heavier lenses, although exceptions exist. You can compare the optics available for the two cameras in the Micro Four Thirds Lens Catalog (E-P1) and the Sony FE Lens Catalog (A9). Mirrorless cameras, such as the two under consideration, have the additional advantage of having a short flange to focal plane distance, which makes it possible to mount many lenses from other systems onto the camera via adapters.

Concerning battery life, the E-P1 gets 300 shots out of its BLS-1 battery, while the A9 can take 650 images on a single charge of its NP-FZ100 power pack. The power pack in the A9 can be charged via the USB port, which can be very convenient when travelling.

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the two cameras alongside a broader set of comparators. 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-P1» 4.8 in 2.8 in 1.4 in 12.5 oz 300 n Jun 2009 799- i Olympus E-P1
 
Sony A9« 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.5 in 23.7 oz 650 Y Apr 2017 4,499 i i Sony A9
 
Nikon Z6« » 5.3 in 4.0 in 2.6 in 23.8 oz 310 Y Aug 2018 1,999 i i Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-P3« » 4.8 in 2.7 in 1.3 in 13.0 oz 330 n Jun 2011 799- i Olympus E-P3
 
Olympus E-PL2« » 4.5 in 2.8 in 1.7 in 12.8 oz 280 n Jan 2011 599- i Olympus E-PL2
 
Olympus E-PL3« » 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.5 in 11.0 oz 300 n Jun 2011 599- i Olympus E-PL3
 
Olympus E-PL1« » 4.5 in 2.8 in 1.7 in 11.8 oz 290 n Feb 2010 599- i Olympus E-PL1
 
Olympus E-620« » 5.1 in 3.7 in 2.4 in 18.4 oz 500 n Feb 2009 699- i Olympus E-620
 
Olympus E-P2« » 4.8 in 2.8 in 1.4 in 12.5 oz 300 n Nov 2009 799- i Olympus E-P2
 
Olympus E-520« » 5.4 in 3.6 in 2.7 in 18.9 oz 750 n May 2008 699- i Olympus E-520
 
Panasonic GH5« » 5.5 in 3.9 in 3.4 in 25.6 oz 410 Y Jan 2017 1,999 i i Panasonic GH5
 
Panasonic G10« » 4.9 in 3.3 in 2.9 in 13.7 oz 380 n Mar 2010 499- i Panasonic G10
 
Panasonic GF1« » 4.7 in 2.8 in 1.4 in 13.6 oz 380 n Sep 2009 749- i Panasonic GF1
 
Panasonic GH1« » 4.9 in 3.5 in 1.8 in 13.6 oz 300 n Mar 2009 899- i Panasonic GH1
 
Sony A7 III« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.9 in 22.9 oz 610 Y Feb 2018 1,999 i i Sony A7 III
 
Sony A7R III« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.9 in 22.9 oz 650 Y Oct 2017 3,199 i i Sony A7R III
 
Sony A7 II« » 5.0 in 3.8 in 2.4 in 21.1 oz 350 Y Nov 2014 1,999- i Sony A7 II
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

Any camera decision will obviously take relative prices into account. The listed launch prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The E-P1 was launched at a markedly lower price (by 82 percent) than the A9, which puts it into a different market segment. 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. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

 

Sensor comparison: Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

The size of the sensor inside a digital camera is one of the key determinants of image quality. A large sensor will generally have larger individual pixels that offer better low-light sensitivity, provide wider dynamic range, and have 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 are more costly to manufacture and tend to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

Of the two cameras under consideration, the Olympus E-P1 features a Four Thirds sensor and the Sony A9 a full frame sensor. The sensor area in the A9 is 276 percent bigger. As a result of these sensor size differences, the cameras have a format factor of, respectively, 2.0 and 1.0. The sensor in the E-P1 has a native 4:3 aspect ratio, while the one in the A9 offers a 3:2 aspect.

Olympus E-P1 and Sony A9 sensor measures

With 24MP, the A9 offers a higher resolution than the E-P1 (12.2MP), but the A9 nevertheless has larger individual pixels (pixel pitch of 5.94μm versus 4.29μm for the E-P1) due to its larger sensor. Moreover, the A9 is a much more recent model (by 7 years and 10 months) than the E-P1, and its sensor will have benefitted from technological advances during this time that further enhance the light gathering capacity of its pixel-units.

The resolution advantage of the Sony A9 implies greater flexibility for cropping images or the possibility to print larger pictures. The maximum print size of the A9 for good quality output (200 dots per inch) amounts to 30 x 20 inch or 76.2 x 50.8 cm, for very good quality (250 dpi) 24 x 16 inch or 61 x 40.6 cm, and for excellent quality (300 dpi) 20 x 13.3 inch or 50.8 x 33.9 cm. The corresponding values for the Olympus E-P1 are 20.2 x 15.1 inch or 51.2 x 38.4 cm for good quality, 16.1 x 12.1 inch or 41 x 30.7 cm for very good quality, and 13.4 x 10.1 inch or 34.1 x 25.6 cm for excellent quality prints.

The A9 has on-sensor phase detect pixels, which results in fast and reliable autofocus acquisition even during live view operation.

The Olympus PEN E-P1 has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 6400. The corresponding ISO settings for the Sony Alpha A9 are ISO 100 to ISO 51200, with the possibility to increase the ISO range to 50-204800.

E-P1 versus A9 MP

For many cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service is based on lab testing and assigns an overall score to each camera sensor, as well as ratings for dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), color depth ("DXO Portrait"), and low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"). Of the two cameras under consideration, the A9 offers substantially better image quality than the E-P1 (overall score 37 points higher). The advantage is based on 3.5 bits higher color depth, 2.9 EV in additional dynamic range, and 2.7 stops in additional low light sensitivity. The following table provides an overview of the physical sensor characteristics, as well as the sensor quality measurements for a selection of comparators.

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-P1» Four Thirds 12.2 4032 3024720/30p21.410.453655Olympus E-P1
 
Sony A9« Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p24.913.3351792Sony A9
 
Nikon Z6« » Full Frame 24.3 6048 40244K/30p25.314.3329995Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-P3« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 30241080/60i20.810.153651Olympus E-P3
 
Olympus E-PL2« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 3024720/30p21.410.257355Olympus E-PL2
 
Olympus E-PL3« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 30241080/60i20.910.349952Olympus E-PL3
 
Olympus E-PL1« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 3024720/30p21.510.148754Olympus E-PL1
 
Olympus E-620« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 3024-21.310.353655Olympus E-620
 
Olympus E-P2« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 3024720/30p21.510.450556Olympus E-P2
 
Olympus E-520« » Four Thirds 10.0 3648 2736-21.410.454855Olympus E-520
 
Panasonic GH5« » Four Thirds 20.2 5184 38884K/60p23.913.080777Panasonic GH5
 
Panasonic G10« » Four Thirds 12.0 4000 3000720/30p21.210.141152Panasonic G10
 
Panasonic GF1« » Four Thirds 12.0 4000 3000720/30p21.210.351354Panasonic GF1
 
Panasonic GH1« » Four Thirds 12.0 4000 30001080/24p21.611.677264Panasonic GH1
 
Sony A7 III« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40004K/30p25.014.7373096Sony A7 III
 
Sony A7R III« » Full Frame 42.2 7952 53044K/30p26.014.73523100Sony A7R III
 
Sony A7 II« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.913.6244990Sony A7 II

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. Both cameras under consideration are equipped with sensors that have a sufficiently high read-out speed for moving images, but the A9 provides a better video resolution than the E-P1. It can shoot movie footage at 4K/30p, while the Olympus is limited to 720/30p.

 

Feature comparison: Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the A9 has an electronic viewfinder (3686k dots), which can be very helpful when shooting in bright sunlight. In contrast, the E-P1 relies on live view and the rear LCD for framing. The adjacent table lists some of the other core features of the Olympus E-P1 and Sony A9 along with similar information for a selection of comparators.

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-P1»- n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 n Y Olympus E-P1
 
Sony A9«3686 n 3.0 1440 tilting Y 1/8000s 20.0 n Y Sony A9
 
Nikon Z6« »3690 Y 3.2 2100 tilting Y 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-P3« »- n 3.0 614 fixed Y 1/4000s 3.0 Y Y Olympus E-P3
 
Olympus E-PL2« »- n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y Y Olympus E-PL2
 
Olympus E-PL3« »- n 3.0 460 tilting n 1/4000s 5.5 n Y Olympus E-PL3
 
Olympus E-PL1« »- n 2.7 230 fixed n 1/2000s 3.0 Y Y Olympus E-PL1
 
Olympus E-620« »optical n 2.7 230 swivel n 1/4000s 4.0 Y Y Olympus E-620
 
Olympus E-P2« »- n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 n Y Olympus E-P2
 
Olympus E-520« »optical n 2.7 215 fixed n 1/4000s 3.5 Y Y Olympus E-520
 
Panasonic GH5« »3680 n 3.2 1620 swivel Y 1/8000s 12.0 n Y Panasonic GH5
 
Panasonic G10« »202 n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 2.6 Y n Panasonic G10
 
Panasonic GF1« »- n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Panasonic GF1
 
Panasonic GH1« »1440 n 3.0 460 swivel n 1/4000s 3.0 Y n Panasonic GH1
 
Sony A7 III« »2359 n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y Sony A7 III
 
Sony A7R III« »3686 n 3.0 1440 tilting Y 1/8000s 10.0 n Y Sony A7R III
 
Sony A7 II« »2400 n 3.0 1230 tilting n 1/8000s 5.0 n Y Sony A7 II

One differentiating feature between the two cameras concerns the touch sensitivity of the rear screen. The A9 has a touchscreen, while the E-P1 has a conventional panel. Touch control can be particularly helpful, for example, for setting the focus point.

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 A9 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).

The E-P1 writes its imaging data to SDHC cards, while the A9 uses SDXC or Memory Stick PRO Duo cards. The A9 features dual card slots, which can be very useful in case a memory card fails. In contrast, the E-P1 only has one slot. The A9 supports UHS-II cards on its first slot and UHS-I on its second one, while the E-P1 cannot take advantage of Ultra High Speed SD cards.

 

Connectivity comparison: Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

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 PEN E-P1 and Sony Alpha A9 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-P1»Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-P1
 
Sony A9«YstereomonoYYmicro2.0YYYSony A9
 
Nikon Z6« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1Y-YNikon Z6
 
Olympus E-P3« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-P3
 
Olympus E-PL2« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-PL2
 
Olympus E-PL3« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-PL3
 
Olympus E-PL1« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-PL1
 
Olympus E-620« »Y-----2.0---Olympus E-620
 
Olympus E-P2« »Ystereo---mini2.0---Olympus E-P2
 
Olympus E-520« »Y-----2.0---Olympus E-520
 
Panasonic GH5« »YstereomonoYYfull3.1Y-YPanasonic GH5
 
Panasonic G10« »Ymono---mini2.0---Panasonic G10
 
Panasonic GF1« »Ymonomono--mini2.0---Panasonic GF1
 
Panasonic GH1« »Ystereo-Y-mini2.0---Panasonic GH1
 
Sony A7 III« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1YYYSony A7 III
 
Sony A7R III« »YstereomonoYYmicro3.1YYYSony A7R III
 
Sony A7 II« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0YY-Sony A7 II

It is notable that the A9 offers wifi support, which can be a very convenient means to transfer image data to an off-camera location. In contrast, the E-P1 does not offer wifi capability.

The A9 is a recent model that features in the current product line-up of Sony. In contrast, the E-P1 has been discontinued (but it can be found pre-owned on eBay). As a replacement in the same line of cameras, the E-P1 was succeeded by the Olympus E-P2. Further information on the two cameras (e.g. user guides, manuals), as well as related accessories, can be found on the official Olympus and Sony websites.


Review summary: Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

So what conclusions can be drawn? Is there a clear favorite between the Olympus E-P1 and the Sony A9? Which camera is better? A synthesis of the relative strong points of each of the models is listed below.

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Advantages of the Olympus PEN E-P1:

  • More compact: Is smaller (121x70mm vs 127x96mm) and thus needs less room in the bag.
  • Less heavy: Is lighter (by 318g or 47 percent) and hence easier to carry around.
  • More affordable: Was introduced into a lower priced category (82 percent cheaper at launch).
  • More heavily discounted: Has been available for much longer (launched in June 2009).

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Arguments in favor of the Sony Alpha A9:

  • More detail: Has more megapixels (24 vs 12.2MP), which boosts linear resolution by 43%.
  • Better image quality: Scores substantially higher (37 points) in the DXO overall evaluation.
  • Richer colors: Generates noticeably more natural colors (3.5 bits more color depth).
  • More dynamic range: Captures a broader range of light and dark details (2.9 EV of extra DR).
  • Better low-light sensitivity: Can shoot in dim conditions (2.7 stops ISO advantage).
  • Better video: Provides higher definition movie capture (4K/30p vs 720/30p).
  • Better live-view autofocus: Features on-sensor phase-detection for quicker and more confident autofocus.
  • Better sound: Can connect to an external microphone for higher quality sound recording.
  • Better sound control: Has a headphone port that enables audio monitoring while recording.
  • Easier framing: Has an electronic viewfinder for image framing and settings control.
  • More detailed LCD: Has a higher resolution rear screen (1440k vs 230k dots).
  • More flexible LCD: Has a tilting screen for odd-angle shots in landscape orientation.
  • Fewer buttons to press: Has a touchscreen to facilitate handling and shooting adjustments.
  • Faster shutter: Has higher mechanical shutter speed (1/8000s vs 1/4000s) to freeze action.
  • Faster burst: Shoots at higher frequency (20 vs 3 flaps/sec) to capture the decisive moment.
  • Less disturbing: Has an electronic shutter option for completely silent shooting.
  • Longer lasting: Gets more shots (650 versus 300) out of a single battery charge.
  • Easier travel charging: Can be conveniently charged via its USB port.
  • Better sealing: Is splash and dust sealed for shooting in inclement weather conditions.
  • Easier file upload: Has wifi built in for automatic backup or image transfer to the web.
  • Easier device pairing: Supports NFC for fast wireless image transfer over short distances.
  • Easier wireless transfer: Supports Bluetooth for image sharing without cables.
  • Greater peace of mind: Features a second card slot as a backup in case of memory card failure.
  • Faster buffer clearing: Supports Ultra High Speed (UHS-II and UHS-I) SDXC cards.
  • More modern: Reflects 7 years and 10 months of technical progress since the E-P1 launch.

If the count of relative strengths (bullet points above) is taken as a measure, the A9 is the clear winner of the contest (24 : 4 points). However, the relative importance of the various individual camera aspects will vary according to personal preferences and needs, so that you might like to apply corresponding weights to the particular features before making a decision 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.

E-P1 04:24 A9

How about other alternatives? Do the specifications of the Olympus E-P1 and the Sony A9 place the cameras among the top in their class? Find out in the latest Best Mirrorless Interchangeable Lens Camera listing whether the two cameras rank among the cream of the crop.

In any case, while the comparison of the spec-sheets of cameras can offer a general idea of their imaging potential, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the shooting experience and imaging performance when actually working with the E-P1 or the A9. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable.

Expert reviews: Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

This is why hands-on reviews by experts are important. The table below provides a synthesis of the camera assessments of some of the best known photo-gear 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-P1»+66/1004/54/54.5/5 Jun 2009 799- i Olympus E-P1
 
Sony A9«+ +89/1005/55/55/5 Apr 2017 4,499 i i Sony A9
 
Nikon Z6« »--4.5/5-5/5 Aug 2018 1,999 i i Nikon Z6
 
Olympus E-P3« »83/10074/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jun 2011 799- i Olympus E-P3
 
Olympus E-PL2« »83/10071/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2011 599- i Olympus E-PL2
 
Olympus E-PL3« »+ +72/1004.5/5-4/5 Jun 2011 599- i Olympus E-PL3
 
Olympus E-PL1« »86/10069/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2010 599- i Olympus E-PL1
 
Olympus E-620« »88/10072/1004.5/5o5/5 Feb 2009 699- i Olympus E-620
 
Olympus E-P2« »+69/1004/54.5/54.5/5 Nov 2009 799- i Olympus E-P2
 
Olympus E-520« »87/100+ +4.5/54/54.5/5 May 2008 699- i Olympus E-520
 
Panasonic GH5« »+ +85/1004.5/55/55/5 Jan 2017 1,999 i i Panasonic GH5
 
Panasonic G10« »-70/1004/5-4/5 Mar 2010 499- i Panasonic G10
 
Panasonic GF1« »85/10069/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2009 749- i Panasonic GF1
 
Panasonic GH1« »+ +72/1004.5/55/54.5/5 Mar 2009 899- i Panasonic GH1
 
Sony A7 III« »+ +89/1005/55/55/5 Feb 2018 1,999 i i Sony A7 III
 
Sony A7R III« »+ +90/1004.5/55/55/5 Oct 2017 3,199 i i Sony A7R III
 
Sony A7 II« »+82/1004.5/55/55/5 Nov 2014 1,999- i Sony A7 II
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 rating-comparisons among cameras that span long time periods or concern very differently equipped models make little sense. It should also be noted that some of the review sites have over time altered the way they render their verdicts.

Olympus E-P1:
Check Ebay offers
Sony A9:
Check Amazon price

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.

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    Specifications: Olympus E-P1 vs Sony A9

    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-P1 Sony A9
    Camera Type Mirrorless system camera Mirrorless system camera
    Camera Lens Micro Four Thirds lenses Sony E mount lenses
    Launch Date June 2009 April 2017
    Launch Price USD 799 USD 4499
    Sensor Specs Olympus E-P1 Sony A9
    Sensor Technology CMOS BSI-CMOS
    Sensor Format Four Thirds Sensor Full Frame Sensor
    Sensor Size 17.3 x 13.0 mm 35.6 x 23.8 mm
    Sensor Area 224.9 mm2 847.28 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 21.6 mm 42.8 mm
    Crop Factor 2.0x 1.0x
    Sensor Resolution 12.2 Megapixels 24 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 4032 x 3024 pixels 6000 x 4000 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.29 μm 5.94 μm
    Pixel Density 5.42 MP/cm2 2.83 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 720/30p Video 4K/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100-6400 ISO 100-51200 ISO
    ISO Boost no Enhancement 50-204800 ISO
    Image Processor TruePic V BIONZ X
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 55 92
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 21.4 24.9
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 10.4 13.3
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 536 3517
    Screen Specs Olympus E-P1 Sony A9
    Viewfinder Type No viewfinder Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.78x
    Viewfinder Resolution 3686k dots
    LCD Framing Live View Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 230k dots 1440k dots
    LCD Attachment Fixed screen Tilting screen
    Touch Input no Touchscreen Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs Olympus E-P1 Sony A9
    Autofocus System Contrast-detect AF On-Sensor Phase-detect
    Manual Focusing AidNo Peaking FeatureFocus Peaking
    Max Shutter Speed (mechanical) 1/4000/s 1/8000/s
    Continuous Shooting 3 shutter flaps/s 20 shutter flaps/s
    Electronic Shutterno E-Shutterup to 1/32000s
    Image StabilizationIn-body stabilizationIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash no On-Board Flash no On-Board Flash
    Storage Medium SDHC cards MS or SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot Dual card slots
    UHS card support no Single UHS-II
    Connectivity Specs Olympus E-P1 Sony A9
    External Flash Hotshoe Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0 USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI micro HDMI
    Microphone Port no MIC socket External MIC port
    Headphone Socket no Headphone port Headphone port
    Wifi Support no Wifi Wifi built-in
    Near-Field Communication no NFC NFC built-in
    Bluetooth Support no Bluetooth Bluetooth built-in
    Body Specs Olympus E-P1 Sony A9
    Environmental SealingNot weather sealedWeathersealed body
    Battery Type BLS-1 power pack NP-FZ100 power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)300 shots per charge650 shots per charge
    In-Camera Charging no USB charging USB charging
    Body Dimensions 121 x 70 x 36 mm
    (4.8 x 2.8 x 1.4 in)
    127 x 96 x 63 mm
    (5.0 x 3.8 x 2.5 in)
    Camera Weight 355 g (12.5 oz) 673 g (23.7 oz)

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