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Olympus E-3

Olympus E-3
alaScore 92

454 reviews

Apr, 2014

alaTest has collected and analysed 454 reviews from magazines and websites. Reviewers really like the usability and build quality. The image quality and screen also get good ratings, but many are critical about the video and size. Opinions about the flash and battery are different.

performance, screen, image quality, build quality, usability

value for money, size, video

We analysed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Digital SLR Cameras the Olympus E-3 is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 92/100 = Excellent quality.

See all Olympus Digital SLR Cameras

Review analysis

(Based on 454 reviews)

Expert Reviews  

User Reviews  

Showing 217 review(s)

Expert Reviews User Reviews
Showing 1 - 10 of 217 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (147)

Expert review by:

Olympus E-3 DSLR camera review


Olympus' E-3 is the company's flagship DSLR and provides a professional level of build and specification at a semi-professional price point. The first thing about the camera you notice however is its bulk. The magnesium alloy body weighs in at 810g...

Excellent image quality, good ergonomics and build, menu system, comprehensive feature set and customisability, super control panel, top plate display, responsive, good dust reduction system, great weather sealing

Fastest focus rate only available with Olympus’ Super Sonic Wave drive lenses, bulky for its class but particularly for a FourThirds Format camera! Cramped top plate buttons, not much headroom in RAW files, complex menus

Olympus’ new flagship DSLR replaces the now very long in the tooth E-1 and bridges that gap for Olympus aficionados between enthusiast and professional shooting. It’s big, heavy, and very capable but not without its flaws

Expert review by:

Olympus E-3 review


Four long years have passed since Olympus launched its first professional digital SLR. During that time there may have been moments when some Olympus fans doubted there would ever be a successor to the much-loved E-1. Now the wait is finally over with...

Great set of features ; Very high image quality ; Good value for money

Controls take a bit of getting used to

Expert review by:

Olympus PEN EP-3


Does the flagship Olympus PEN EP-3 deliver more than just stylish retro looks?

Great image quality ; Enthusiast-level shooting features ; Solid build quality and stylish design

Zoom ring a bit hard to reach ; AWB can be fooled under artificial light ; Very expensive

(£630 with 18-55mm) both delivering great image quality and heaps of user customisation, albeit in a much bigger overall package than the PEN EP-3.



Expert review by:

Olympus E-3 Digital SLR


Less than £1000 can buy you Olympus' latest Pro camera. But how professional is a 10MP camera?

What the Olympus E3 brings to the table is excellent images, a great build quality, and a lovely user experience, but fails to match the innovation of the E-1, or even other models from the Olympus range. Instead it's taken the best bits, refined them...

Expert review by:

Olympus E-3 review


The range-topping Olympus E-3 sports a 10Mp Live MOS chip and is the most professional digital SLR camera to date to carry the Olympus branding.

To be picky, the Olympus E-3's auto white-balance performance is variable, something the manual itself acknowledges. Still, there are sufficient manual settings to correct it, and since this isn't a camera for the point-and-shoot brigade, those who...

Expert review by:

Olympus E-3 review


Accessible controls and multi-talented live view make the Olympus E-3 friendlier than other higher-end models, with unstinting burst mode and admirable picture quality making it worth considering for professionals. It's a little heavy and the screen...

Excellent pictures ; Easily mastered control system ; Strong implementation of live view ; Powerful burst mode

Resolution isn't as high as rivals ; Quirky flash controls ; Screen feels small

It took a lot to shake the nagging feeling that the delayed E-3 has already been left behind by other cameras like the Nikon D300 or Sony Alpha DSLR-A700 with their bigger screens and 12 megapixels, but in terms of usability and picture quality the E-3...

Expert review by:

Stuff magazine


After a half-decade hiatus, Olympus finally has a new pro SLR. But has it been left behind by the competition?

Worth the wait. The E-3 matches pro SLR capabilities with the ease of use of an entry-level cam

EISA Award - Best Product

Expert review by:

Olympus E-3


The Olympus E-3 is a comfortable (but robust) camera that offers a high level of protection against water and dust. It provides very effective image stabilisation, dust removal and a Live View function on the articulated LCD screen, but most...

DIWA Golden Awards!

Expert review by:

Olympus E-3


The Olympus E-system has been a different approach to digital SLR photography since its launch four years ago. The E-3 expands the system's uniqueness by adding super-fast Supersonic Wave Drive auto focus, Live View technology combined with a flexible...

Expert review by:

Review: Olympus E-3


Olympus' new professional SLR offers remarkably fast performance--for a price.

Excellent photo quality; fast performance; solid, dust- and splash-proof body; flip-and-twist LCD; large, 100 percent coverage viewfinder; built-in wireless flash controller

Relatively low resolution for the price; smallish LCD, some clunky design aspects

Despite some interface quirks and a slightly awkward design, the Olympus E-3 fares quite well against its midrange dSLR competition.

Product Specifications

With the E-3 Olympus has developed an impressive array of highly reliable new technologies essential for serious SLR photographers. Olympus cameras have a history of raising the bar when it comes to reliability, toughness and durability - and the E-3 takes it to a whole new level. The E-3 is equipped with a large optical viewfinder that provides 100 percent accurate viewing and 1.15x magnification for reliable composition - what you see is exactly what you'll get. Even fine details are seen with astonishing clarity. The E-3's large, precision-crafted pentaprism is crafted from high refractive index glass with a highly reflective silver coating. The eyepiece uses glass lenses. All the lenses are surface coated to maintain brightness. The focusing screen features a Neo Lumi-Micro Mat for bright, easy-to-adjust manual focusing. Spots on photos are now banished forever. The Olympus dust reduction system is an industry first and a proven technology. Every time you turn on the E-3, our Supersonic Wave Filter - located between the shutter and the image sensor - silently vibrates an amazing 30,000 times per second. Dust is blasted away. The dust reduction system even removes dust attached by intermolecular force that can't be shaken off or discharged with static electricity. Dust will no longer get between you and a great shot. Shoot anywhere, anytime, in any condition. The E-3 body, the built-in flash and the LCD are all splashproof and dustproof. Constructed from a magnesium-alloy with a homogeneous composition, the E-3 is lightweight yet strong and rugged. The same goes for Zuiko Digital lenses. You'll find splashproof and dustproof models that are as tightly sealed as the camera. To ensure you can keep shooting, even at 5 frames per second, Olympus utilizes a durable shutter mechanism tested to 150,000 cycles making the E-3 the perfect choice for photographers who demand the most from their equipment, in any situation.

Audio Input

Type: None


Battery Form Factor:Manufacturer specific
Manufacturer Battery Name:Olympus BLM-1

Camera Flash

Red Eye Reduction:Built-in
Type:Pop-up flash

Digital Camera

Digital Camera Type:SLR
Supported Flash Memory:CompactFlash / Microdrive / xD-Picture Card

Dimensions & Weight


Display (Projector)

Diagonal Size:2.5in
Diagonal Size (metric):6.4cm
Display Form Factor:Rotating
Technology:TFT active matrix
Type:LCD display


Packaged Quantity:1
Product Line:Olympus

Lens System

Lens for SD:Body only


Microsoft Certification:Certified for Windows Vista
Vista Certification:Certified for Windows Vista

Optical Sensor

Optical Sensor Size:13.0 x 17.3mm
Optical Sensor Size (metric):13.0 x 17.3 mm
Optical Sensor Type:Live MOS
Sensor Dust Reduction:Built-in / Yes
Sensor Resolution:10.1Megapixel

Optical System

Built-in Optical Image Stabilizer:Built-in / Yes
Image Stabiliser:Optical (image sensor shift mechanism)

Optical Viewfinder

Type:Fixed eye-level pentaprism

Storage Floppy Drive

Type: None

Video Input

ISO (Max):3200
Light Sensitivity:ISO 100-3200
Special Effects:Custom Effect / Monotone / Muted / Portrait / Vivid
Still Image Format:JPEG / RAW / RAW + JPEG
Type:Digital camera


Viewfinder Type:Optical