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Olympus Bows Entry d-SLR With Creative Filters

Center Valley, Pa. Olympus Tuesday unveiled its latest entry-level d-SLR camera, incorporating Live View shooting mode and three art filters.

The E-450 features a compact design and creative shooting tools including three art filters — pop art, pin hole and soft focus — on-screen autofocus, face detection, shadow adjustment and perfect-shot preview.

Other features include a 10-megapixel imager, a 2.7-inch LCD, HyperCrystal II technology offering higher contrast and better viewing in extreme lighting, and a wider angle of view on the LCD.

The E-450 accepts both CompactFlash Type I & II, Microdrives and xD-Picture Cards for image storage. It is also compatible with Olympus’ wireless flash units.

The live-view system allows holding the camera away from the face in a variety of angles when framing a subject by using the LCD in place of the optical viewfinder. This enables bringing the picture into focus on the screen by pressing the shutter button half way.

The face-detection system targets and locks on up to eight faces to ensure they are in focus and the shadow adjustment system captures detail in the bright areas of a frame and opens up detail in the shadows.

The camera’s TruePic III+ image processor is said to produce clear photos with accurate colors, while lowering image noise by one step to reduce graininess when using high ISO settings.

Olympus said it will launch the E-450 DSLR on QVC starting May 9, before rolling out to other retailers in July.

It will be offered in a two-lens package at a $699 suggested retail including ED 14-42mm f3.5/5.6 and ED 40-150mm f4.0/5.6 Zuiko digital zoom lenses, plus USB cable, video cable, li-ion battery, charger, shoulder strap and Olympus Master 2 software CD-ROM.