By Theano Nikitas

It’s the summer of compact interchangeable lens cameras, or so it seems with a cluster of recent announcements including the late-breaking news this morning of a trio of new Olympus PEN cameras.

At the head of the Olympus compact system camera (CSC) pack is the 12.3-megapixel E-P3, with several under-the hood improvements including a new image sensor and a new processing engine.

Faster performance—yes, it’s true—and full HD movie capture are only a few of the camera’s new features. Other highlights include a new 3-inch OLED semi-touch screen (more about this later), native ISO up to 12,800 for easier low light shooting and additional flexibility for Olympus’ trademark creative Art Filters.

Olympus’ middle-of-the-night product announcement —1am Eastern Standard Time—also included the unveiling of new lenses and accessories as well as two additional PEN cameras: the PEN Lite E-PL3 and the sweet, petite PEN mini E-PM1.

But it’s the higher-end E-P3, which will retail for $899 with a kit lens when it goes on sale in August, that interested us the most. PDN was able to get its hands on a fully functional, test sample of the E-P3 and we filed the following review of the new camera to coincide with its launch.

Read the full review of the Olympus PEN E-P3 by clicking here. Full-resolution sample images shot with the E-P3 are after the jump below.

Below are some sample images we shot with the Olympus PEN E-P3 later. Click to enlarge each shot.

Olympus PEN E-P3 Sample Gallery (Click to enlarge)

©Theano Nikitas

©Theano Nikitas

©Theano Nikitas

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