Olympus Stylus 1 compact tempts enthusiasts with constant f28, 28300 lens

After watching Sony rejuvenate its compact lineup with the RX-series, Olympus is having a go as well with its latest effort, the Stylus 1. It looks to be a step up from last year's Stylus XZ-2, bringing a more DSLR-like form factor and new 1.44 million dot EVF. The fixed lens is also markedly improved, thanks to a constant f/2.8 aperture over the 28-300mm (35mm equivalent) 10.7x zoom range and a close-focusing 2-inch macro distance. While it carries the same smallish 1/1.7-inch, 12-megapixel sensor as the Stylus XZ-2, it's gained the fast touch AF system from the Olympus PEN ILC series. Other features include a 3-inch, 1.04 million dot tiltable touchscreen viewer, a hybrid control ring for functions like focus or shutter speed, WiFi sharing with a smartphone app, and 1080/30p HD video with 240fps slo-mo at 320 x 240. It'll be up for grabs in December for $700, so if you're thinking of slipping one in your pocket instead of (or along with) your smartphone, check the gallery of press shots below.

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Olympus Stylus 1 press images

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Olympus STYLUS 1® UNIFIES DSLR PERFORMANCE, LENS POWER AND MAXIMUM PORTABILITY IN ONE COMPACT PACKAGE

The First Olympus Fusion of Ultimate Image Quality, High-Powered i.ZUIKO® DIGITAL Lens, and Built-In EVF

CENTER VALLEY, PA., October 29, 2013 – Olympus has redefined the enthusiast compact camera by uniting many of the best features found across its camera lineup in the new STYLUS. Designed for semi-pro shooters who demand optical brilliance, DSLR operation, convenience and portability, this one-size-fits-all package has head-turning, OM-inspired looks as well as premium imaging performance.

The STYLUS 1 includes an i.ZUIKO lens that incorporates the outstanding optical quality of the Olympus ZUIKO interchangeable lenses. At its heart is a large 1/1.7-inch BSI CMOS sensor and TruePic VI image processor along with additional features, including the built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF) from the award-winning Olympus OM-D E-M5® and Wi-Fi for shooting and sharing anywhere. Whether you want the latest and greatest high-tech tool, or if you simply prefer something that is lightweight and easy to take when you are on the go, there is truly something for everyone.

One Great Lens
The newly developed, ultra-slim 10.7x (28–300mm*) high-power i.ZUIKO lens features constant f2.8 brightness across the zoom range and is versatile enough to capture wide to telephoto shots and produce pro-quality stills with beautiful, defocused backgrounds and crisp images even when telephoto shooting in low light. The large diameter lens incorporates a powerful, built-in VCM image stabilization mechanism that virtually eliminates camera shake and blur. Its lens can also capture stunning macro shots from 2 inches away. When the lens is not in use, it retracts fully into the camera body (behind a removable automatic lens cap), so the STYLUS 1 fits easily into a coat pocket.

One Great Sensor
Olympus designed the new lens to work seamlessly with its 12.0 megapixel 1/1.7-inch high-sensitivity backlit CMOS sensor and TruePicVI image processor, the same processor used in the Olympus OM-D E-M5, for fast recovery time and shutter speed to capture images with rich details and low noise. Images come through with true-to-life flesh tones, brilliant blue skies and precise tonal expression. The STYLUS 1 also inherits FAST TOUCH AF system from the Olympus PEN® series for near-instant, precision focusing via the tilt-able LCD touchscreen monitor.

One Great Electronic Viewfinder
The STYLUS 1 is the first Olympus enthusiast, premium compact camera equipped with a built-in electronic viewfinder (EVF). The 1.44 million dot resolution LCD EVF has a 1.15x viewfinder magnification rate (equivalent to 0.58x of 35mm film camera) and 100 percent field of view - just like a DSLR - so users can easily compose their subjects directly with clear visibility from the center to the edges. The eye sensor automatically switches the live view display from the high-resolution 3.0-inch, 1.04 million dot resolution tilt-able LCD touchscreen monitor to the EVF in no time as the camera approaches the user's eye. A variety of information is displayed in an easy-to-view layout on the EVF screen, including variables such as exposure and color.

Operability for all Shooting Styles
The STYLUS 1 incorporates an ideal blend of effective, hands-on controls, including a hybrid control ring similar to the one found on the Olympus STYLUS XZ-2 iHS. The control ring is built around the lens and can be switched between digital and analog operation with the control lever located on the front of the camera. In digital mode, the ring turns smoothly for fine zooming or manual focusing, and in analog mode, users can adjust settings such as aperture, shutter speed and more. The front grip ensures a precise hold, while the sub-dial, positioned near the shutter button, provides further operational accuracy. The camera is also equipped with a hot shoe for accessories, built-in flash, a side zoom lever with variable speeds and two customizable function buttons for easy access to commonly used settings.

Wi-Fi Sharing and Control
Built-in Wi-Fi is easy to set up. By quickly scanning the QR code displayed on the camera's LCD with a smart device, it syncs with the Wi-Fi network created by the camera. The free Olympus Image Share 2.1 Smartphone app synchronizes a user's Smartphone and the STYLUS 1 so the camera's "Live View" is effectively displayed on the phone, and the camera can be controlled by touching the Smartphone display*. Users can wirelessly adjust various settings, such as the shutter speed, aperture value, ISO and exposure compensation, as well as operate the Live Bulb shooting mode from their Wi-Fi devices. They can also use their Smartphone to embed GPS information into their images.

Creative Possibilities
In addition to superior still image quality, the 1080p Full HD Movie capability with stereo sound and high-speed movie recording (120fps/240fps) captures movies for dramatic slow-motion playback of fast-action scenes. The STYLUS 1's 11 included Art Filters™ with bracketing option, five Art Effects and Photo Story™, which shoots a group of still photos straight into attractive, prepared layouts, effortlessly bring the user's artistic visions to life. Users can also capture RAW image data for post-processing flexibility, create motion blur effects without overexposing thanks to a built-in ND filter (with 3 EV stops) and capture up to 7 frames per second in full resolution!

Several new accessories are designed to complement the STYLUS 1 and broaden the creative potential of this powerhouse compact camera. The EP-11 eyecup cuts out peripheral light for improved visibility in bright conditions; a full-body jacket protects the camera against damage and comes with a tailored cover, and the CLA-13 converter adapter for the high-grade TCON-17x 1.7x teleconverter lens that extends the focal length of the camera to 510mm and retains the outstanding brightness of a constant 1:2.8 aperture.

*35mm equivalent.

U.S. Pricing and Availability
The Olympus STYLUS 1 will be available in December 2013. Estimated Street Price: $699.99 Available in Black

To find out more about the STYLUS 1, and for a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website at: http://www.getolympus.com/us/en/digitalcameras/premium-compacts/stylus-1.html.

Journalists interested in more information, review units and high-resolution images of the Olympus STYLUS 1 should contact Keith Gordon, Mullen Public Relations, 212-885-3218, keith.gordon@mullen.com, or Jennifer Colucci, Olympus Imaging America Inc., 484-896-5719, jennifer.colucci@olympus.com or visit the Olympus website: http://asset.olympusamerica.com/login/.