LAS VEGAS--Though ILCs may be the more interesting enthusiast cameras, the more popular market seems to be the compact, fixed-lens models, most notably the Canon PowerShot S95. Olympus forges into that market with its XZ-1, a promising-looking model that's not quite as compact as the S95, but with an exceptionally fast f1.8 lens and a sleek design that rivals models like the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5 in size and operation. I had some time to play with a preproduction version of the camera--can't really make any judgments about photo quality or performance, unfortunately--and think it's got a … Read more
An AT&T Facebook account confirmed the existence of an upcoming Motorola handset yesterday, outing the Olympus for all to see.
A Boy Genius Report reader asked the AT&T Share team whether he would be wise to wait on the Tegra-2-powered smartphone as he is eligible for an upgrade. The carrier's response, which was quickly pulled, was that the phone will be available in either December or January.
Previous rumors suggested that the Olympus would arrive in early 2011, possibly in time for CES at the top of the year. I doubt that the phone will … Read more
An anonymous tipster leaked a pair of images of what is being called the Motorola Olympus. The giant Android smartphone should feature a Tegra 2 processor, a front-facing camera, and a screen in the vicinity of 4 inches or larger. Like the recently outed LG Star, the handset could be Motorola's first dual-core handset when it arrives, presumably in early 2011.
As Snapdragon processors were the benchmark for Android super phones in 2010, Nvidia's Tegra 2 will be the pace setter for next year. Other known details for the Olympus include support for Bluetooth 2.1 and Wi-Fi (… Read more
While professional cameras don't get updated nearly as frequently as consumer models, Olympus is still pushing it with the almost 3-year gap between its E-3 and the newly announced E-5. Given the pace of technological change, especially in that market and most notably with respect to video capture, it's a wonder that more Olympians haven't jumped ship. Don't get me wrong; there's still a lot to like about the Olympus system. If you shoot telephoto, the 2x focal-length multiplier makes for more easily achieved long-zoom shots, and the company still makes some of the best lenses. And it's well constructed, dust and splashproof. But for commercial photographers tasked with keeping up with ever more demanding clients, it must be frustrating to watch the company concentrating on its ILC (interchangeable-lens camera) market while you wait..and wait...and wait.
Was the E-5 worth the wait? While I can't really answer that until I've tested it, based on the specs I'm not very optimistic. Although it has the same autofocus system as the E-3, it's been tweaked, and the E-3 has always been pretty fast, anyway. It also retains the articulated LCD, which grows to 3 inches--definitely a plus. And of course, there's the resolution bump, and video. Here's a comparative summary:… Read more
Olympus on Tuesday unveiled two new telephoto zoom lenses for its Micro Four Thirds system, and also updated its current 17mm optics with a new color chassis.
The company is touting the M.Zuiko Digital ED 75-300mm F4.8-5.6 lens as the smallest 600mm-equivalent lens (Micro Four Thirds cameras have a crop factor of 2x) on the market with a diameter of 2.8 inches and a length of 4.5 inches. Weight-wise, it tips the scale at less than a pound. This glass also comes with a new focusing motor that delivers silent and precise AF, which makes … Read more
As I mentioned back at the end of June, camera manufacturers are beginning to announce models for the second half of 2010. Sony, Fujifilm, Panasonic, and Samsung have made their announcements, three of them doing so early Wednesday morning.
Sony and Panasonic are launching mostly high-end models as well as a couple updates to older, popular models. Samsung refreshed its flagship DualView cameras and introduced a 7x zoom ultracompact for $180. And Fujifilm announced replacements to three models that were barely six months old as well as a significant update to its groundbreaking F200EXR.
Here are links to all the … Read more
Using a $400 Olympus E-330 digital camera, Rice University biomedical engineers and University of Texas cancer researchers report in PLoS ONE this week that they are able to distinguish between healthy and cancerous cells with only a little tweaking.
"Consumer-grade cameras can serve as powerful platforms for diagnostic imaging," says lead author and Rice professor Rebecca Richards-Kortum in the school's news release. "Based on portability, performance, and cost, you could make a case for using them both to lower health care costs in developed countries and to provide services that simply aren't available in resource-poor … Read more