Check Latest Prices
Priced at about $499, this Olympus camera is highly recommended if your budget is keeping you at around the $500 level.
- Check the current price of the Olympus E-PM1 on Amazon
- Check the current price of the Olympus E-PM1 on B&H
Many people ask me the best camera to get while on a budget of around $500. This is the camera I suggest. I put together this page just to give you the basics.
I have listed this camera in as the “Good” camera in the Good/Better/Best analysis on the Camera Reviews page here on the site.
This Olympus will serve you well! It has a 12 megapixel sensor, which is plenty big for most situations. If you choose you want to make prints, you’ll be able to get them safely up to 2 or 3 feet across. Sometimes people prefer more megapixels, but that does not necessarily indicate the quality of the camera.
The camera also uses something called the “Micro Four Thirds” standard. This means that there many different lenses you can attach to this camera, which is something you can add over time. If you’re just getting started, there is no need to worry about lenses, since it comes with a servicable 14-42mm lens that will allow wide-angle shots and a little bit of zoom.
I recommend this camera over an entry-level DSLR because it is lighter, the lenses are smaller, and you get a lot more bang for the buck than overcommitting yourself into expensive and bulky DSLR lenses.