Olympus E-330 review

Olympus have proved they are not scared of striding out on their own, with the conception of their FourThirds digital camera system. The Olympus E-330 sports another SLR first, real-time live-view on the LCD screen. Gary Wolstenholme takes a look at whether this is a truly valuable addition, or just a throw-away gimmick.

It isn't simple trying to decide exactly how I feel about the Olympus E-330. It is a well built camera, capable of delivering very high quality images in good light. The live-view display is a useful addition but, with concentrating on this new technology it seems Olympus have neglected to update other features of the camera, like the autofocus system. It just seems archaic when compared to the multipoint AF arrays in cameras like the Canon EOS 350D and the Nikon D50.

Negative points aside, the quality of the images produced at the lower ISO settings is very good, contrasty and sharp right to the edges and this alone makes the Olympus E-330 worthy of consideration for photographers looking to buy a camera suitable for most general photography tasks.

In summary the positive points of the Olympus E-330 are:
  • Excellent image quality at up to ISO400
  • Innovative live-view screen
  • Quality of the bundled kit lens
  • Build quality and design

The negative points:
  • Archaic three-point autofocus system. Having to open the menu each time you want to manually select a focus point is a real chore
  • Images at ISO1600 are noisier than images from competing cameras
  • Reflective screen cover can make it difficult to see in bright light

Olympus E-330 review.

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