Small is the order of the day: the new Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1 takes the PEN series and compresses it down into a tiny yet high quality package ideal for beginners...

The new Olympus PEN Mini (E-PM1) is a tiny powerhouse of a Compact System Camera. The latest interchangeable camera from the Olympus PEN range, the onus is on small size for a compact and easy-to-carry package.

Although small like a point-and-shoot compact, the PEN Mini is really a DSLR-quality camera that makes high-class photography and movie-making easy. Olympus’s Live Guide gives beginners intuitive control of key parameters like aperture and depth of field without needing prior knowledge of how such controls work.

The E-PM1’s six Art Filters add fun creative effects to both Full HD movies or stills. Ever the user-friendly camera, should you not know what a setting in the menu is for then a helpful window pops up to tell you.

With world’s fastest autofocus system, great low light performance and a superb choice of Olympus and Micro Four Thirds lenses, the PEN Mini E-PM1 has plenty on offer.

Available from early autumn 2011, the PEN Mini’s price is yet to be confirmed.

Watch our hands-on preview of the new Olympus Pens:

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1 features at a glance:

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1: Design

  • Small, light system camera with interchangeable lenses

  • Super-stylish design available in six attractive colours

  • Interchangeable decoration ring on supplied lens

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1: Image Quality

  • Powerful TruePic VI image engine for faster recovery time and excellent image quality

  • Ultra-effective in-body image stabilisation for blur-free movies and stills with any lens

  • Compact M.ZUIKO DIGITAL 14-42mm (28-84mm) 1:3.5-5.6 II R fast and near-silent (Movie and Still compatible) lens

  • 12.3 effective Megapixel High Speed Live MOS sensor for excellent low-light performance and Full HD movie recording

  • Up to ISO 12,800 sensitivity

  • 1080i Full HD stereo movie recording as AVCHD or Motion JPEG

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1: Ease of Use

  • 3in LCD with 460k-dot resolution

  • FAST AF, world’s fastest autofocus system. Always on, with 35 AF points, low-light AF Illuminator and out-of-picture AF Tracking

  • Intuitive Live Guide in HD Movie, still and P/S/M/A mode

  • Pop-up description for each menu point

  • Live View in HD Movie and still mode

  • Easy-to-use Live Wheel feature menu

  • Fewer buttons means simpler operation

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1: Creativity & Flexibility

  • Six creative Art Filters in HD Movie and still modes

  • Accessory Port 2 for compatibility with the growing family of PEN accessories

  • Compatible with 20 Micro Four Thirds, 27 Four Thirds and more than 500 other lenses (via an adapter)

  • 1/4000th sec. shutter speed with 5fps sequential shooting (to be determined for final spec)

  • Multi Exposure mode for 2 RAW images

  • Long-life BLS-5 Li-ion battery

Olympus PEN Mini E-PM1: Other highlights

  • External, tiltable flash supplied