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Olympus Intros New Camera, Two Photo Printers

Melville, N.Y. — Olympus introduced a new 5-megapixel camera today along with its first PictBridge-enabled dye sublimation photo printer.

The C-5000 zoom is a 5-megapixel model with a 3x optical/4x digital zoom lens and is being positioned to court both the more advanced photographer and the point-and-shoot novice. It serves as a replacement for the C-4000, offering a 20 percent smaller body and an added hot shoe.

The camera will ship with a Lithium-Ion battery, charger and a 32MB xD card. It features both automatic and full manual controls, six scene program modes (including landscape, portrait, night scene and sports photography), and a threaded ring built into the body around the lens (adapter required) for adding additional lenses.

A “My Mode” feature allows users to create a separate, customizable exposure setting. The menu also features three shortcut buttons that let the user assign the most frequently used menu categories to these three buttons. A programmable “Custom Button” allows the user to assign one button on the back of the camera for immediate access to auto exposure lock, variable drive settings, different ISO ratings and/or remote control operation.

Other manual controls include selectable autofocus (AF) point, a super macro mode for subjects as close as one inch and an external TTL Flash Terminal provided for the FL-50 or FL-20 flash or for syncing to studio strobes.

The C-5000 will be available October for a suggested retail price of price of $599.

The company also announced two new dye-sublimation printers, the P-10 and P-440 Digital Photo Printers. The P-10 is compatible with the new PictBridge standard, allowing PictBridge-enabled digital cameras, regardless of manufacturer, to directly print to the printer via USB cable without using a PC. Canon and Sony are set to ship PictBridge-enabled cameras this fall while Olympus said it too would ship a PictBridge-enabled successor to the C-5050 and offer a firmware upgrade to owners of the D-560.

The two Olympus printers also apply a protective laminate overcoat to photo prints that can resist water, scratching, moisture, fading and fingerprints.

The P-10 can produce 4-by-6-inch and 3.5-by-5-inch edge-to-edge color prints with or without borders in less than 45 seconds. It will be available in October for a suggested retail price of $249.95. The P-10 comes supplied with a paper tray with 3.5-by-5-inch conversion tray, and a starter kit that includes an ink ribbon cartridge for five prints and five sheets of 4-by-6-inch (approximately) paper.

The step-up P-440 produces five different print sizes, up to 8 by 10, in 75 seconds in either glossy or matte finish. Print sizes include postcard, photo-album, index and A5 wide. The P-440 can also automatically print up to 50 copies of the same image.

The P-440 has slots for direct printing from xD-Picture Cards (available in Olympus and Fujifilm digital cameras) and also has a PCMCIA Type II card adapter for SmartMedia, Memory Stick, and CompactFlash cards. It features a 1.8-inch color LCD and can be connected to a TV for previewing images stored on flash memory cards. The printer includes a variety of filters, stamps, backgrounds and decorative mattings to frame prints.

The P-440 will be available in October for a suggested $599.95 and will be supplied with a paper tray, ink cassette (ribbon holder), five sheets of standard paper and an ink ribbon pack for five prints.