PW

Olympus XZ-2 Comparison Review

The Olympus XZ-2 is a fixed lens compact camera that was announced in September 2012 and is equipped with a 1/1.7-inch sensor. It offers a resolution of 11.8 megapixel.

camera

The Olympus XZ-2 has a Camera Elo of 1546. This rating puts the XZ-2 below average of all travel zoom compact cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (small sensor cameras), the XZ-2 also ranks below average. – Well, the Olympus XZ-2 is more than 6 years old, and there have been many other good digital cameras released since 2012.

Headline Specifications
Olympus XZ-2
Fixed lens compact camera
28-112mm f/1.8-2.5
11.8 MP, 1/1.7" Sensor
1080/30p Video
ISO 100-12800
Viewfinder optional
3.0" LCD, 920k dots
Tilting touchscreen
5 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilization
340 shots per battery charge
113 x 65 x 48 mm, 346 g


badge

Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.

Body comparison with a credit card

An illustration of the physical dimensions of the Olympus XZ-2 vis-à-vis a credit card is provided in the side-by-side display below. Three consecutive perspectives from the front, the top, and the back are presented. All size dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Olympus XZ-2 vs credit card front
XZ-2 versus credit card top view
XZ-2 and credit card rear side

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Olympus XZ-2 alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible comparisons there.

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 XZ-2 4.4 in 2.6 in 1.9 in 12.2 oz 340 n Sep 2012 599- i Olympus XZ-2
 
Canon G16« » 4.3 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.6 oz 360 n Aug 2013 549 i i Canon G16
 
Canon G15« » 4.2 in 3.0 in 1.6 in 12.4 oz 350 n Sep 2012 499- i Canon G15
 
Fujifilm X10« » 4.6 in 2.8 in 2.2 in 12.3 oz 270 n Sep 2011 599- i Fujifilm X10
 
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-PM1« » 4.3 in 2.5 in 1.3 in 9.3 oz 330 n Jun 2011 499- i Olympus E-PM1
 
Olympus XZ-1« » 4.4 in 2.6 in 1.7 in 9.7 oz 320 n Jan 2011 499- i Olympus XZ-1
 
Panasonic LX7« » 4.4 in 2.7 in 1.8 in 10.5 oz 330 n Jul 2012 499- i Panasonic LX7
 
Pentax MX-1« » 4.8 in 2.4 in 2.0 in 13.8 oz 290 n Jan 2013 499- i Pentax MX-1
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Olympus XZ-2 was launched in the US market at a price of $599. 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.

Olympus XZ-2:
Check Ebay offers

Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide

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 tent to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

The Olympus XZ-2 features a 1/1.7-inch sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 4.4. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Olympus XZ-2 among the smaller-sensor digicams that favor affordability and compact design.

Olympus XZ-2 sensor measures

Consistent information on actual sensor performance is available from DXO Mark for most cameras. 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"). The table below summarizes the physical sensor characteristics and sensor quality findings and compares them across a set of similar 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 XZ-2 1/1.7 11.8 3968 29761080/30p20.411.321649Olympus XZ-2
 
Canon G16« » 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/60p21.011.723054Canon G16
 
Canon G15« » 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/24p19.911.516546Canon G15
 
Fujifilm X10« » 2/3 12.0 4000 30001080/30p20.511.324550Fujifilm X10
 
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-PM1« » Four Thirds 12.2 4032 30241080/60i21.010.349952Olympus E-PM1
 
Olympus XZ-1« » 1/1.7 10.1 3664 2752720/30p18.810.411734Olympus XZ-1
 
Panasonic LX7« » 1/1.7 10.0 3648 27361080/60p20.711.714750Panasonic LX7
 
Pentax MX-1« » 1/1.7 12.0 4000 30001080/30p20.411.320849Pentax MX-1

Many modern cameras are not only capable of taking still images, but can also record movies. The XZ-2 indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the XZ-2 can use is 1080/30p.

Feature comparison

Apart from body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. The adjacent tables list some of the other core features of the Olympus XZ-2 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 XZ-2- n 3.0 920 tilting Y 1/2000s 5.0 Y Y Olympus XZ-2
 
Canon G16« »optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/4000s 2.2 Y Y Canon G16
 
Canon G15« »optical n 3.0 922 fixed n 1/4000s 2.1 Y Y Canon G15
 
Fujifilm X10« »optical n 2.8 460 fixed n 1/4000s 10.0 Y Y Fujifilm X10
 
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-PM1« »- n 3.0 460 fixed n 1/4000s 5.5 n Y Olympus E-PM1
 
Olympus XZ-1« »- n 3.0 614 fixed n 1/2000s 2.0 Y Y Olympus XZ-1
 
Panasonic LX7« »- n 3.0 920 fixed n 1/4000s 11.0 Y Y Panasonic LX7
 
Pentax MX-1« »- n 3.0 920 tilting n 1/8000s 1.0 Y Y Pentax MX-1

One convenient feature of the XZ-2 is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.

 

Connection comparison

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 XZ-2 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 XZ-2Ystereomono--mini2.0---Olympus XZ-2
 
Canon G16« »Ystereomono--mini2.0Y--Canon G16
 
Canon G15« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Canon G15
 
Fujifilm X10« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Fujifilm X10
 
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-PM1« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Olympus E-PM1
 
Olympus XZ-1« »Ymono---mini2.0---Olympus XZ-1
 
Panasonic LX7« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Panasonic LX7
 
Pentax MX-1« »-stereomono--mini2.0---Pentax MX-1
 

The XZ-2 has a zoom lens built in (6-24.0mm f/1.8-2.5), which, in full frame equivalent terms, provides a focal length range from 28 to 112mm. The camera is, hence, ready to shoot, while remaining more compact in size than an interchangeable lens camera with an optic that offers similar focal length and aperture specifications.

Expert reviews

While the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains partial and cannot reveal, for example, the handling experience and imaging performance when actually working with the XZ-2. 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. This is where reviews by experts come in. The following table reports the overall rankings of the cameras as published by some of the major camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).

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 XZ-2+-4.5/54/54.5/5 Sep 2012 599- i Olympus XZ-2
 
Canon G16« »+-4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Aug 2013 549 i i Canon G16
 
Canon G15« »+76/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Sep 2012 499- i Canon G15
 
Fujifilm X10« »-76/1004/53.5/54.5/5 Sep 2011 599- i Fujifilm X10
 
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-PM1« »86/10071/1004.5/5-4.5/5 Jun 2011 499- i Olympus E-PM1
 
Olympus XZ-1« »-74/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2011 499- i Olympus XZ-1
 
Panasonic LX7« »+ +75/1004/55/54.5/5 Jul 2012 499- i Panasonic LX7
 
Pentax MX-1« »-74/1004/53.5/54/5 Jan 2013 499- i Pentax MX-1
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. Thus, a score needs to be put into the context of the launch date and the launch price of the camera, 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.

Olympus XZ-2 FAQ

Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the XZ-2.

What type of imaging sensor is used in the XZ-2?

The camera has a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor at its core.

Which image processing chip is used to convert the raw signal into an image file and perform noise reduction and image sharpening?

Olympus equipped the XZ-2 with the TruePic VI image processor.

What is the ISO sensitivity range of the XZ-2?

The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 12800.

Can the camera be equipped with an optional viewfinder?

Yes, Olympus provides the VF-2 as an accessory (here on amazon) that can be mounted on the hotshoe.

Do I need to purchase an external camera trigger to shoot time-lapse sequences?

No, the Olympus XZ-2 has an intervalometer built-in, so that low frequency shooting (for example, flower blooming, sunset, moon rise) can be undertaken without the need to purchase a separate external intervalometer and related software.

Does the Olympus XZ-2 feature an autofocus assist light?

Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.

Which battery does the XZ-2 use?

The camera gets its power from the Li-90B, which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.

Camera to camera comparisons

If you would like to see a side-by-side review of this and another camera, 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.

~
    Specifications Summary
    Camera Model Olympus XZ-2
    Camera Type Fixed lens compact camera
    Camera Lens 28-112mm f/1.8-2.5
    Launch Date September 2012
    Launch Price USD 599
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology CMOS
    Sensor Format 1/1.7" Sensor
    Sensor Size 7.6 x 5.7 mm
    Sensor Area 43.32 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 9.5 mm
    Crop Factor 4.4x
    Sensor Resolution 11.8 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 3968 x 2976 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 1.91 μm
    Pixel Density 27.26 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/30p Video
    ISO Setting 100-12800 ISO
    Image Processor TruePic VI
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 49
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 20.4
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 11.3
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 216
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Viewfinder optional
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 3.0 inch
    LCD Resolution 920k dots
    LCD Attachment Tilting screen
    Touch Input Touchscreen
    Shooting Specs
    Autofocus System Contrast-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidNo Peaking Feature
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/2000s
    Continuous Shooting 5 shutter flaps/s
    Silent Shootingno E-Shutter
    Time Lapse PhotographyIntervalometer Built-in
    Image StabilizationIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot
    UHS card support no
    Connectivity Specs
    External Flash Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI
    Wifi Support no Wifi
    Body Specs
    Battery Type Li-90B power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)340 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 113 x 65 x 48 mm
    (4.4 x 2.6 x 1.9 in)
    Camera Weight 346 g (12.2 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  »   »