Cameras

Olympus Adds to Line of Waterproof and Shockproof Digital Cameras

Olympus today announces two additions to its SW series of shockproof and waterproof cameras. The 8-megapixel Stylus 850 SW, available this month, will retail for $299.99. The 10.1-megapixel Stylus 1030 SW will join the line in March and will sell for $399

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Jan. 22, 2008 - Olympus today announces two additions to its SW series of

shockproof and waterproof cameras. The 8-megapixel Stylus 850 SW, available this month, will retail for $299.99, while the $399.99 10.1-megapixel Stylus 1030 SW will join the line in March.

The 10.1-megapixel Stylus 1030 SW, the line's flagship, is waterproof to 33 feet, a specification shared with the earlier 7.1-megapixel 770 SW. It also shares the crushproof designation with its predecessor, able to withstand 220 pounds of water pressure.

"The Stylus 1030 SW is one of, if not the toughest camera on the market, built strong enough to withstand some of the harshest conditions," said Mark Hoffman, director of product marketing, Olympus Imaging America Inc., in a company press release. "Now with more pixels, a bigger, brighter LCD, and greater durability, it features innovative technologies designed to make getting the best image easier than ever."

The camera’s body is comprised of stainless steel and aluminum and is fitted with rubber gaskets and O-rings, protecting it from the elements. The lens has a water-repellant coating and its airtight design prevents dust from entering the camera. To complement its waterproof capabilities, the 1030 SW features a manometer, which can record the depth at which an image was taken. There are four underwater Scene modes and an underwater Movie mode. An LED illuminator projects from the camera body to light subjects in dark places.

 

A few notable upgrades have been made to the Stylus 1030’s components. The 2.7-inch, 230,000-pixel HyperCrystal II LCD promises improved contrast and color reproduction. The internal 3.6x optical zoom lens has a 28-102mm (35mm equivalent) range, wider than its predecessor. A new battery is included with the camera, which, according to Olympus, charges 2.5 times faster than the old battery and holds 25 percent more charge.

Other features include digital image stabilization, Olympus’s Shadow Adjustment Technology, Perfect Shot Preview, Perfect Fix, face detection, and an in-camera panorama creation mode.

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At $299.99, the 8-megapixel Stylus 850 SW is $100 less than the flagship model. It shares many of the 7.1-megapixel 790 SW’s (announced last January) specifications. It can survive a 5-foot drop, be submerged in water up to about 10 feet deep, and can withstand temperatures down to a chilly 14 degrees Fahrenheit. Its crowning features are coupled with standard point-and-shoot components including a 3x optical zoom lens and 2.5-inch LCD with 230,000 pixels. The new model ups the resolution from 7.1 to 8 megapixels, is dustproof, and available in different colors (see the chart below).

"The Stylus 850 SW is designed to take worry-free images while withstanding life’s challenges," said Hoffman in a company press release. "New to the Stylus 850 SW are 8-million pixels of image resolution and our TruePicTMIII Image Processor to ensure that it captures rich and vibrant detail with every shot. We’ve also added in-camera panorama because we know it’s a must for active travelers."

The Stylus 850 SW offers other features consistent with the latest additions to the SW line, including face detection, digital image stabilization, in-camera panorama, Shadow Adjustment Technology, Perfect Shot Preview, and Perfect Fix.

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