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Olympus Introduces Consumer-Level D-SLR

3/24/2008 02:00:00 AM Eastern

Olympus will ship a new consumer-level d-SLR to dealers in May.

The 10-megapixel E-420 is an update to the E-410. Olympus is claiming that it is currently the smallest digital SLR on the market.

It adds a new AF live-view mode for using autofocus when in live view by pressing the shutter button halfway down (similar to a point-and-shoot camera). Also new is a face-detect and shadow-adjustment feature that works in tandem to automatically focus on and properly expose faces and background.

The E-420 employs the new 2.7-inch HyperCrystal II LCD display technology found on some of Olympus' 2008 point-and-shoots. The new LCD allows for a greater viewing angle and improved color detail, Olympus said.

It incorporates a CCD-shifting dust-reduction system, 18 scene modes, 3.5 fps burst mode, a built-in flash with wireless flash control, and Olympus' perfect-shot preview mode for viewing the effects of scene modes before the shot is captured.

The E-420 will be sold in three configurations: body only for $449, with the existing ED 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 Zuiko Digital Zoom Lens for $549, or with the new ED 25mm f/2.8 Zuiko Digital Lens for $649.