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First DSLR with live LCD Previews

It actually comes as quite a bit of a surprise that there haven’t already been any DSLR cameras out there that have live color LCD previews. Olympus is launching their new E-330, saying that it is the first to have this feature. The average consumer has already enjoyed the luxury of ditching the traditional viewfinder for years—practically all regular digital cameras these days sport some form of LCD.

You’ll also find a long list of impressive features to go along with the tilt-and-swivel 2.5-inch LCD screen. The 7.1 megapixel sensor isn’t anything to sneeze at it, nor is the 3fps shooting and Olympus’ unique ultrasonic dust-removal system. You’ll be able to see 92% of your shot on the screen using autofocus mode, but if you’re picking up a DSLR, you’re probably a manual focus kind of person, in which case you’d get your full 100% coverage.

It’ll only be a matter of time before the other DSLR big boys – Canon, Nikon, Sony, et al – add live LCD previews to their DSLRs as well, but if you’re like most other techies out there, you’ll want it before anyone else has it. Look for the Olympus E-330 sometime in March with a price tag right around $1,100.

The Olympus E-330 digital SLR – main features:

* World’s first* Live View digital SLR with two modes:
o – A Mode – Full Time Live View with incorporated AF
o – B Mode – Macro Live View with 10x magnification for accurate manual focusing
* 7.5 million pixels Live MOS sensor
* Multi-angle 6.4cm/2.5” HyperCrystal LCD (215,250 pixels)
* Supersonic Wave Filter for dust protection
* TTL Optical Porro Finder design
* Based on FourThirds Standard
* Single AF, continuous AF and manual focusing, plus S-AF+MF and C-AF+MF
* 49 area AE sensor
* ESP, centre-weighted average and spot exposure metering plus high light basis and shadow light basis spot metering
* Professional AE lock functionality
* Sequential shooting at up to 3.0fps
* IR Hybrid Type Cut Filter for equalisation with human eyes
* 1/3 EV ISO steps
* ISO up to 1600
* TruePic TURBO image processor
* P/S/A as well as full manual operation
* 20 scene modes, 7 creative modes plus 4 exposure modes
* Dual slot for CompactFlash/Microdrives and xD-Picture Cards
* Built-in pop-up flash
* User-friendly with detailed and simplified display modes
* Weight: 550g, size: 140x87x72mm
* Compatible with the complete range of Olympus E-System lenses and many accessories, including the FL-36 flash and the ME-1 magnifier
* Available as camera body only or in kit containing camera body, 14-45mm (28-90mm) 1:3.5-5.6 lens, BLM-1 rechargeable battery pack with BCM-2 charger
* Optional underwater case PT-E02 available from May 2006

* As at January 2006

About Michael Kwan

A freelance writer and tech geek from Vancouver. Find me at michaelkwan.com and follow me on Twitter @michaelkwan.

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  • Nathan Gardner

    The Canon 20Da was actually the first DSLR to feature live view.