Olympus E-PL1 Digital Camera Review$599.99
We test for image noise by shooting a brightly lit X-Rite ColorChecker chart with high ISO noise reduction turned off, and at each available noise reduction level setting (in this case, low, standard and high). As seen in the chart, noise levels start out below 1% with noise reduction turned off (to preserve maximum fine detail levels), but results are barely usable by the time you hit ISO 800, and hopeless after that. Cranking up the noise reduction level has a substantial effect, but as seen in the sample high ISO images seen here, you pay a considerable price in lost detail at anything beyond the standard level. Considering the trade-off, your choice of setting will ultimately be guided by what you're shooting (is there much detail to lose?), and how you're planning to display the shot (a small image viewed on-screen can survive a lot more abuse than an 11x14' print).
Occasionally one component of the total image noise will be notably higher than the others, making noise much more apparent to the eye. That's not the case here: the red, green, blue, yellow and chroma (grey) noise levels are tightly grouped. More on how we test noise.
The ISO settings range from 100-3200. There is also an Auto ISO function, which will make the setting automatically based on lighting conditions. The user can set an upper limit to the auto ISO, and a default value.
We don't see a lot of ISO bracketing around these parts, but it's provided in the E-PL1. In a three-shot sequence, the ISO value is raised and lowered from the current setting by 0.3, 0.7 or 1.0 EV.