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Olympus' tiny Pen E-PL9 has 4K and image stabilization

A simplified menu on the touchscreen will make it easier for beginners.
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Olympus has introduced the PEN E-PL9, giving its smallest Micro Four Thirds mirrorless camera a significant overhaul with the addition of 4K video and in-body stabilization. The new model carries the retro look of its predecessor, the E-PL8, but improves on it with a bigger grip and mode dial. It now packs the same 16-megapixel sensor, TruePic VIII processor and 121-point contrast-detect AF (with face and eye detection) as the larger OM-D E-M10 Mark III, but is still limited to 3-axis instead of 5-axis stabilization.

Olympus has wisely endowed the Pen E-PL9 with 4K, 30 fps video, knowing that a feature available on mid-range smartphones should definitely be on interchangeable-lens cameras. At the same time, the new model is clearly aimed at beginners and social media users, so Olympus added Bluetooth capability for quick smartphone sharing.

Gallery: Olympus PEN E-PL9 mirrorless camera | 6 Photos

In another nod to its beginner market, Olympus has added a simplified menu system for the touchscreen. That way, un-savvy users can "start their journey of photographic experimentation gradually via touchscreen selection of creative programs before moving on to more traditional settings," it explained in a press release. As with the last model, the screen tilts out and down to ease selfie shots.

The Olympus Pen E-PL9 will come to Europe, Asia and other regions around the world in March for €699/£649 with the kit 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 power zoom lens or €549/£579 for the body only (in black, brown and white). We should know more about North American pricing and availability in the weeks to come.

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