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Olympus Intros New Camera, PC-Free Imaging System

Melville, N.Y. — Olympus introduced a new digital camera and a series of interconnected peripherals aimed at liberating common imaging tasks from PC connectivity.

The Olympus Total Imaging Solution includes a new digital camera, a hard drive, a 4-inch by 6-inch dye sublimation printer and a forthcoming DVD burner. All, save the DVD burner, will ship in January. No ship date was announced for the burner.

The new camera, via a cradle, connects to any and all of these devices to save, print and archive photos automatically without first connecting them to a PC.

The 4-megapixel IR-500 features a 2.8x optical zoom lens and a 2.5-inch LCD that can rotate 360 degrees. The LCD can show photo albums stored on an xD-Picture Card through the camera’s Album Function. The camera features 19 scene program modes, and a QuickTime movie mode with camera shake correction to reduce image blur.

The IR-500 will have a $499.99 suggested retail price.

The hard drive, the S-HD-100, has a 40GB capacity and is equipped with a built-in CPU that lets users manage their image files — such as automatically scanning the drive and memory card to avoid duplicate downloads. The S-HD-100 will have a $299.99 suggested retail and can also be connected to a computer when necessary to transfer, edit and back-up images.

The P-S100 dye-sublimation photo printer can produce a 4-inch by 6-inch print in roughly 84 seconds. It features a 50-sheet paper capacity, PictBridge compatibility and seals each print with a light and moisture-resistant over-coating,

It will sell for a suggested $199.99.

A spokesman for the company noted that forthcoming Olympus cameras will be compatible with the Total Imaging System.