Olympus E-510 vs Olympus E-520

  • Four Thirds
  • 10 megapixels
  • Four Thirds
  • 39
    Overall
  • 11
    Imaging
  • 20
    Features
  • 73
    Size
  • 100
    Price
  • Four Thirds
  • 10 megapixels
  • Four Thirds
  • 39
    Overall
  • 11
    Imaging
  • 31
    Features
  • 73
    Size
  • 1
    Price

Olympus E-510 vs Olympus E-520: a Complete Review and Comparison

Are you looking for the best camera to suit your needs? Due to a wide range of options, making a wise and weighted decision can be rather challenging. Which specs to keep in mind? What are the key pros and cons of each model? This comparison should give some helpful hints!

The goal of this overview is to provide a detailed comparison of two popular camera models introduced by the same brand - Olympus. Although both products are offered by the same brand, they come from different categories. Thus, Olympus, is a camera from Semi-Pro DSLR category, while E-520 is a Entry-Level DSLR camera. The first common feature of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 that is worth mentioning is sensor. Both cameras feature 10.0 MP CMOS sensors.

Now, before we can move on to our comparison, let's take a moment to look at the key characteristics of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520.

Olympus E-510 Key Features:

  • 10.0 MP Four Thirds CMOS sensor
  • ISO 100 - 1600
  • Image Stabilization: Yes
  • ViewFinder: Yes
  • 3.0 fps Continuous Shooting
  • Built-in Wireless: No
  • Dimensions: 136 x 92 x 68 mm
  • Weight: 490 g
  • Environmental Sealing: No
  • Built-in GPS: No
  • Replaced Olympus E-500. Compare
  • Replaced by Olympus E-520. Compare
  • Also known as Olympus EVOLT E-510

Olympus E-520 Key Features:

  • 10.0 MP Four Thirds CMOS sensor
  • ISO 100 - 1600
  • Image Stabilization: Yes
  • 2.7″ Fixed Type Screen
  • ViewFinder: Yes
  • 4.0 fps Continuous Shooting
  • Built-in Wireless: No
  • Dimensions: 136 x 92 x 68 mm
  • Weight: 552 g
  • Environmental Sealing: No
  • Built-in GPS: No
  • Replaced Olympus E-510. Compare

Since Olympus E-510 has been around for some time, it was substituted by Olympus E-520.

Being a newer model, Olympus E-510 substituted Olympus E-500. Be sure to check out some of our other comparisons that may also interest you:
Olympus E-510 vs. E-500
Olympus E-500 vs. Olympus E-520

Why is Olympus E-510 a better choice than Olympus E-520

Weight 490 g vs 552 g 62 g lighter

What are the key reasons to pick Olympus E-520 over Olympus E-510

Continuous Shooting 4 fps vs 3 fps 1 fps faster
AutoFocus Face Detection Yes vs No Very handy for portraits
Screen Size 2.7″ vs 2.5″ 0.2" larger screen
Dxo Color Depth 21.4 vs 21.2 Better color depth
Dxo Dynamic Range 10.4 vs 10 Better dynamic range
Dxo Low Light Iso 548 vs 442 Better High ISO performance

Key PROs of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520

Viewfinder Optical (pentamirror) | Optical (pentamirror) Better framing and control
Raw Support Yes | Yes Better image quality
Built-In Flash Yes | Yes External flash available
Image Stabilization Yes | Yes Built-in stabilization
Flash Sync Port Yes | Yes Port for Flash Sync

Key CONs of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520

Touch Screen No | No No touch screen
Screen Size 2.5″ | 2.7″ Not suitable for flash photography
Screen Resolution 230k dots | 230k dots Small screen resolution
Screen Type Fixed Type | Fixed Type No flexible viewing angles
Sensor Resolution 10.0 MP | 10.0 MP Small sensor resolution
Timelapse Recording No | No No timelapse recording
Bracketing No | No No AE bracketing
Continuous Shooting 3.0 fps | 4.0 fps Low continuous shooting
Environmental Sealing No | No No environmental sealing

Olympus E-510 vs Olympus E-520: Comparing Two Models By Physical Characteristics

Before heading straight to the technical characteristics of each model, let’s start with comparing their physical specs. Let’s start with looking at the physical difference of the two products. Below are images that clearly show the sizes of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 from the front view.

Olympus E-510
Olympus E-520
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Now, let’s go on and see how the reviewed models are different or similar by the top view.

Olympus E-510
Olympus E-520
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After looking at these images, you should get a clear idea of each model’s dimensions and how they are different from each other. However, we are not going to stop there. The next characteristic worth looking at is the weight. Of course, not every photographer is concerned about the weight, for example, it wouldn't be a decisive point for those who shoot in a studio. However, it is still an important factor because if you happen to go on a long photo session or just love having the camera with you wherever you go, you want to be sure that the chosen model isn't too heavy.

Speaking of weight, Olympus E-510 is a lighter option of these two, as it weights 62g less than the Olympus E-520. This difference, in fact, can become a significant disadvantage for the photographers, who prefer to have their cameras with them wherever they go.

Comparing Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 by the type of Sensor and Resolution

Sensor is, without a doubt, the most significant element of every digital camera. Its type, size, and resolution are the factors that define the quality of future shots. Thus, it is barely possible to pick a suitable camera without looking at these specs.

Are Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 any different in terms of sensor type?

In terms of sensor type and resolution, these models are identical. Both Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 come equipped with the same CMOS that has a resolution of 10.0 MP. Thus, if you are wondering, which option to choose, this is not a factor you should be looking at.

Take a look below to find the comparison of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 by the size of their sensors.

Olympus E-510
Olympus E-520
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Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 are identical by this indicator, as each feature a sensor of the same size. Thus, both cameras will provide the same level of control in terms of the depth of field if you use them with the same focal length and aperture.

For Which Fields Of Photography Are Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 Suitable?

If you are interested in photography or has made a career in this field, you should know that different types of shooting actually require different camera characteristics. While one model can produce outstanding portraits, at the same time, it can be terrible for shooting landscapes, and so on. Thus, before you purchase a specific camera, it is vital to decide, which type of shooting you do most often and consider an option that suits it the most.

This section of our comparison is devoted to the performance of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 in different fields of photography. Here we are going to look at the five main areas and evaluate how well each of the reviewed models performs in them. This will help you choose an option that suits your needs the most depending on your interest in one or several of these fields.

Photography Type Olympus E-510 Olympus E-520
Portrait Photography
35%
59%
Street Photography
84%
84%
Sports Photography
59%
71%
Daily Photography
98%
94%
Landscape Photography
4%
49%

Olympus E-510 for Portrait Photography

Advantages:

  • Image Stabilization

Disadvantages:

  • Small Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) sensor

Olympus E-520 for Portrait Photography

Advantages:

  • Image Stabilization
  • Face Detection Focusing

Disadvantages:

  • Small Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) sensor

Olympus E-510 for Street Photography

Advantages:

  • Built-in View Finder
  • Live View
  • Image Stabilization
  • Large Four Thirds(17.3 x 13 mm) sensor

Disadvantages:

  • Big size (136 x 92 x 68 mm)
  • Small Number of autofocus Points (3)

Olympus E-520 for Street Photography

Advantages:

  • Built-in View Finder
  • Live View
  • Image Stabilization
  • Large Four Thirds(17.3 x 13 mm) sensor

Disadvantages:

  • Big size (136 x 92 x 68 mm)
  • Small Number of autofocus Points (3)

Olympus E-510 for Sports Photography

Advantages:

  • Big size (136 x 92 x 68 mm)

Disadvantages:

  • Slow Continuous Shooting (3.0 fps)
  • No Environmental Sealing
  • Slow Max Shutter Speed (1/4000s)
  • Smal Number of autofocus Points (3)
  • Bad Low Light ISO (442)

Olympus E-520 for Sports Photography

Advantages:

  • Big size (136 x 92 x 68 mm)

Disadvantages:

  • Slow Continuous Shooting (4.0 fps)
  • No Environmental Sealing
  • Slow Max Shutter Speed (1/4000s)
  • Smal Number of autofocus Points (3)
  • Bad Low Light ISO (548)
  • Small battery life (650 shots)

Olympus E-510 for Daily Photography

Advantages:

  • Built-in Flash
  • Built-in View Finder

Disadvantages:

  • Small Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) sensor
  • Big weight (490 g)
  • Big size (136 x 92 x 68 mm)
  • Video is not available

Olympus E-520 for Daily Photography

Advantages:

  • Built-in Flash
  • Built-in View Finder
  • Live View

Disadvantages:

  • Small Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) sensor
  • Big weight (552 g)
  • Big size (136 x 92 x 68 mm)
  • Video is not available

Olympus E-510 for Landscape Photography

Advantages:

  • RAW Support

Disadvantages:

  • Small Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) sensor
  • Low resolution sensor (10 MP)
  • Bad Dynamic Range (10.0)
  • No Environmental Sealing
  • Bad Low Light ISO (442)

Olympus E-520 for Landscape Photography

Advantages:

  • Live View
  • RAW Support

Disadvantages:

  • Small Four Thirds (17.3 x 13 mm) sensor
  • Low resolution sensor (10 MP)
  • Bad Dynamic Range (10.4)
  • No Environmental Sealing
  • Bad Low Light ISO (548)

Comparison of Olympus E-510 vs Olympus E-520: Final Verdict

Hopefully, our detailed overview of these models has helped you consider all the main specs, pros and cons of each cameras. Maybe, after reading this comparison, some of you have already decided which option to opt for depending on your needs and preferences. However, if you are still wondering which option is a better choice, Olympus E-510 or Olympus E-520, below you can see what scores each of them received in five different aspects. To wrap up, we have used our unique Decision Algorithm that assesses different camera models upon 63 different factors including their price, and, if possible, DxO Mark scores. This algorithm allows us to make our verdict more consistent and objective.

What is our final verdict? Based on our comparison and the final scores of Olympus E-510 and Olympus E-520 here is what we can say in conclusion:

According all the factors that we considered in the process of comparing these two cameras, Olympus E-520 deserves a higher Total Score than the Olympus E-510. Thus, if you are choosing between these options, we would recommend you to choose the first model over the other one.

Olympus E-510 vs Olympus E-520 Table Of Technical Specs

For better understanding of each model’s technical characteristics, find the detailed comparison below:

Olympus E-510 Olympus E-520
General
Brand Olympus Olympus
Model E-510 E-520
Announced Nov 23, 2007 Aug 20, 2008
Body Type Mid-size SLR Compact SLR
Sensor
Sensor Type CMOS CMOS
Sensor Size Four Thirds Four Thirds
Sensor Dimensions 17.3 x 13 mm 17.3 x 13 mm
Sensor Area 224.90 mm2 224.90 mm2
Sensor Resolution 10.0 MP 10.0 MP
Max Image Resolution 3648 x 2736 3648 x 2736
Max Native ISO 1,600 1,600
Max Boosted ISO n/a n/a
Min Native ISO 100 100
RAW Support Yes Yes
Lens
Manual Focus Yes Yes
Lens Mount Four Thirds Four Thirds
Number of Lenses 45 45
Focal Length Multiplier 2x 2x
Macro Focus Range
AutoFocus
AF Touch No No
AF Continuous Yes Yes
AF Single Yes Yes
AF Tracking No No
AF Selective Yes Yes
AF Center No No
AF Multi Area Yes Yes
AF Live View No Yes
AF Face Detection No Yes
AF Contrast Detection No Yes
AF Phase Detection Yes Yes
Number of Focus Points 3 3
Number of Cross Focus Points n/a n/a
Screen
Screen Type Fixed Type Fixed Type
Screen Size 2.5″ 2.7″
Screen Resolution 230k dots 230k dots
Live View Yes Yes
Touch Screen No No
ViewFinder
ViewFinder Optical (pentamirror) Optical (pentamirror)
ViewFinder Resolution 0k dots 0k dots
ViewFinder Coverage 95% 95%
ViewFinder Magnification 0.46 0.46
Photography Features
Min Shutter Speed 60 s 60 s
Max Shutter Speed 1/4000 s 1/4000 s
Continuous Shooting 3.0 fps 4.0 fps
Shutter Priority Yes Yes
Aperture Priority Yes Yes
Manual Exposure Mode Yes Yes
Exposure Compensation Yes Yes
Custom White Balance Yes Yes
Image Stabilization Yes Yes
Built-in Flash Yes Yes
Flash Range 12 12
Flash Modes Auto, Auto FP, Manual, Red-Eye Auto, Auto FP, Manual, Red-Eye
External Flash Yes Yes
AE Bracketing No No
WB Bracketing No No
Exposure Modes
Multi-Segment No Yes
Average No No
Spot No Yes
Partial No No
AF-Area No No
Center Weighted No Yes
DxO Sensor Scores
DxO Sensor Score 52 55
DxO Color Depth 21.2 21.4
DxO Dynamic Range 10.0 10.4
DxO Low Light ISO 442 548
Video Features
Video Resolutions n/a n/a
Max Video Resolution
Video Formats n/a n/a
Microphone Port No No
Headphone Port No No
Connectivity
Wireless Connectivity No No
HDMI No No
USB USB 2.0 USB 2.0
Physical
Environmental Sealing No No
Water Proof No No
Dust Proof No No
Shock Proof No No
Crush Proof No No
Freeze Proof No No
Weight 490 g 552 g
Physical Dimensions 136 x 92 x 68 mm 136 x 92 x 68 mm
Battery Life n/a 650 shots
Battery Type n/a Battery Pack
Battery Model n/a n/a
Other Features
Self Timer Yes Yes
Timelapse Recording No No
GPS
Storage Type Compact Flash (Type I or II), xD Picture Card Compact Flash (Type I or II), xD Picture Card
Storage Slots 1 1

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