Olympus E-PL7 Review - With a compact body and 16.1MP sensor, as well as a tilting LCD screen, the E-PL7 is targeted towards the 'selfie' generation who are looking to travel light.
Olympus E-PL7 Review – Design
As mentioned previously, while the OM-D range of Olympus CSCs offers a body and design more akin to a retro DSLR, the ‘Lite’ E-PL range is a much more compact affair. The E-PL7 continues this tradition, tipping the scales at a little over 350g and comfortably fitting in the hand or in the pocket.
The body itself is a pleasing mix of a brushed metal finish with highlights of a leather effect material, giving the camera a comfortable feel in the hand.
Thankfully the camera also boasts reasonably sized thumbrest on its rear combined with a raised and contoured section on the front of the camera which serves the role of an ergonomic grip.
This pairing of thumbrest on the rear of the camera and hand grip on the front makes the E-PL7 comfortable to hold whilst shooting, although owing to its compact proportions those with larger hands might find the whole configuration a touch cramped.
Although the absence of a viewfinder and pop-up flash might be of concern for some, what it does mean is that there’s space on the camera’s top plate for a control dial that’s certainly welcome.
The rear of the camera, meanwhile, houses the bulk of the controls including playback, delete and menu buttons, as well as a four-way mode selector button. Once again due to the smaller size of the camera these buttons are quite close together and as a result will require nimble fingers for smooth operation.
One design criticism of the E-PL7 is the way in which the vari-angle LCD screen functions. Rather than the pivoting design seen employed by other manufacturers, that here features a sprung mechanism which sits firmly in place in one of its three designated shooting angles.
Olympus has clearly attempted to come up with a screen perfectly suited to selfie capture rather than one that is well set for general photography, and in doing so you can’t help but feel the manufacturer has over-engineered the whole set-up somewhat.