Thanks everyone. I also like its looks better than the E-300. I love the lighter weight and the large LCD. There are a number of features that I like that the E-300 does not have and there are at least a couple things about the E-300 I like better but, for me, the lower weight of the E-500 is the main advantage.
I am not sure where I am going with lenses yet. I expect at some point to buy the 11-22mm (Dr. G I too dream of the 7-14mm). I have the 50mm f2 Macro (a fine lens) and of course the 14-45mm and 40-150mm. The 50-200mm is too heavy for me. I am considering getting the 14-54mm for its speed, but I wonder whether I could get by most of the time with the 11-22 and 40-150. That is quite appealing as, providing the 18mm gap is not too much, I could cover 22 to 300mm equivalent carrying just those two lenses. Also, even though it is slow the new 18-180mm could be tempting if its resolution can match the 14-45mm. Finally, I have the Sigma 55-200 and it is not that bad and very light. I am going to do some comparison shots with the 40-150mm.
I am pretty much tied down right now and we have had awful weather so it may be a while before I post any pictures from the E-500. My gut on image quality is that the E-300 and E-500 are very close to each other, but there may be some subtle differences, but I am not ready to comment yet.
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