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Thursday, December 25, 2008

Zuiko and Olympus E-30: A preview

I was approached by Olympus Malaysia to conduct a product review of the new upcoming Olympus E-30 DSLR.

The E-30 is a new DSLR designed to fill the large gap between the E-3 and E-520. Targeted at the enthusiasts market, the E-30 sports E-3 form factor with a shorter build. I suspect it is due to the smaller glass pentaprism, which shortens it by 1cm. Also, the weather-sealing magnesium alloy construction is not with the E-30. But, after handling it for about an hour during our meet, I can safely say that the build is still solid, and should survive a tropical drizzle.

Other key features it has similar with E-3 are the 11-point cross-hair AF system, slightly smaller viewfinder with only 98% coverage, slightly bigger "free-angle live view" 2.7" LCD screen, and 5 frames-per-second rapid continuous shoot. It also happily works with the HLD-4, too.

The E-30 brings new enhanced features and improvements to the fore.
  • A newly developed 12.3MP Live MOS sensor with the TruePicIII+ processor to produce higher quality image reproduction.
  • 6 Art Filters for in-camera image touch-up. These filters are: Pop Art, Soft Focus, Pale & Light Color, Light Tone, Grainy Film, and Pin Hole.
  • 9 different Aspect Ratios: 4:3, 3:2, 16:9, 6:6, 5:4, 7:6, 6:5, 7:5, 3:4. For me, I will mostly use the first 5 as these are my favorite aspect ratios.
  • Built-in dual axis level gauge to measure pitch & roll during image composition and capture. This is great for landscape and architecture shoots.
From the short session, I was quite pleased actually with the E-30. Although, being an E-3 user, I had my own prejudice towards the E-30 before handling it. It is now gone! In fact, the E-30 is a great complement to the E-3.

I will be getting the test unit next week, and will be able to provide a full insight into the real capabilities of the E-30. Focus of the review will be on the Art Filters and usability of the Live View in the field.

I just can't wait!!!!!!!!

* Image of E-30 courtesy of Olympus Corporation.

1 comment:

Noel said...

woohoo!! cant wait for the review.