Discovering the Features and Benefits of the Olympus E-500 Camera for Stunning Photography

The Olympus E-500 camera is a remarkable device that has gained immense popularity among photographers. With its advanced features and superior quality, this camera is an excellent choice for capturing stunning shots. In this blog, we'll explore the features, benefits, and drawbacks of the Olympus E-500 camera to help you decide if it's the right choice for you.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Olympus E-500 article cover photo

Key Features

Oct 21 2005


8 megapixels


Sensor TypeFour Thirds

Other similar cameras

Olympus E-300 thumbnail

Olympus E-300

Released Jan 10 2005 | 8MP resolution

Olympus E-400 thumbnail

Olympus E-400

Released Sep 14 2006 | 10MP resolution

Olympus E-450 thumbnail

Olympus E-450

Released Mar 31 2009 | 10MP resolution

Overview of the E-500

As a photographer, you know that capturing great shots is all about having the right equipment. A camera that can deliver superior quality images, with advanced features and functionality, is a must-have for any photographer. One of the cameras that have been gaining popularity in recent years is the Olympus E-500, and for a good reason. With its impressive features and benefits, this camera is an excellent choice for both amateur and professional photographers alike. Let's take a closer look at what makes the Olympus E-500 such a great choice for stunning photography.

Olympus E-500 Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Olympus E-500 camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


High image quality
Accurate color reproduction
Durable construction
Compact size
Interchangeable lenses
Good low-light performance
Image stabilization
Versatile shooting modes


Relatively low megapixel count
Limited dynamic range
Slow autofocus
Small LCD screen
Limited video capabilities
Limited high ISO performance
High noise levels at high ISO
Limited number of autofocus points

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Olympus E-500

Weather sealed
Dimensions130 x 95 x 66mm

Weather Sealing

The Olympus E-500 is not sealed against water and dust, so it's important to be careful when using it in such conditions. If you often shoot in environments with water or dust, it's recommended to check out another camera with weather sealing.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderOptical (pentaprism)
Screen TypeFixed Type
Screen Resolution215k dots
Body typeMid-size SLR

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a fixed type 2.50" screen, with a display resolution of 215k dots. This makes the Olympus E-500 not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


E-500 includes a optical (pentaprism) viewfinder with no electronic viewfinder of resolution with a coverage of 95% and a magnification of 0.45x. This feature enhances the camera's suitability for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Olympus E-500 has a 8MP sized CCD sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 8 pixels. Olympus E-500 has a native ISO range of 100 - 400 which can be boosted to null - 1600. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Oct 21 2005


100 - 400

ISO Range

SensorFour Thirds
Extended ISOnull - 1600
Max resolution3264 x 2448 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


not tested

Color Depth

not tested

Dynamic Range

not tested

Low Light ISO

not tested

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Olympus E-500 camera has excellent color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also excellent, allowing it to retain high amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is excellent, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the E-500 is excellent

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: Four Thirds



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageCompact Flash (Type I or II), xD Picture Card
Battery Life
Battery Model
Wireless Connectivity


The Olympus E-500 supports Compact Flash (Type I or II), xD Picture Card with 1 slots for storage. This may suffice for everyday use. However, for professional applications such as wedding photography, it is not recommended as a memory card malfunction could lead to the loss of all footage.


The Olympus E-500 uses the undefined model of undefined. This is rated for undefined shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Olympus E-500 has built in flash which is great for event photography and in low light situations. It also offers a flash shoe that allows you to attach external flashes. This provides more versatility in your lighting choices.


The Olympus E-500 boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/4000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Olympus E-500 includes phase detection autofocus (AF), with 3 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Olympus E-500?

The Olympus E-500 features a CCD sensor

Is the Olympus E-500 weather sealed?

No the E-500 does not have weather sealing.

When was the Olympus E-500 announced?

The Olympus E-500 was announced on Oct 21 2005

Does the Olympus E-500 have in-body image stabilization?

No the E-500 does not have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Olympus E-500?

The E-500 has a native ISO range of 100-400, which can be expanded to ISO null-1600 for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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