March 6, 2008 Olympus has again claimed the mantle of the world’s thinnest, smallest interchangeable lens digital SLR camera with the announcement of the E-420. The camera is scheduled to be released in May this year, and is the successor to the E-410 digital SLR released last April.il.
Measuring 5.1 inches by 3.6 inches by 2.1 inches and weighing 13.4 ounces (which is still heavier than the E-410), the E-420 features a 10 megapixel Live MOS Sensor featuring greater dynamic range and lower noise levels and an improved TruePic III image processing engine. The camera supports 3.5 frames-per-second sequential shooting, and has a built-in flash with wireless flash control.
An improved version of the Live View Technology, called Auto Focus Live View, allows autofocusing based on contrast detection for the first time. And while the AF in previous models used a phase-difference detection system, where a mirror was moved down temporarily, the new AF Live View allows users to shoot in the same way they would with a compact digital camera. Face Detect and Shadow Adjust Technology optimizes auto focus and auto exposure on faces and the background simultaneously, and has the ability to detect up to eight different faces at once.
The camera sports a 2.7-inch HyperCrystal II LCD monitor with improved visibility in Live View shooting and picture playback, due to an anti-reflection multi-coating and color temperature adjustment. The monitor has a viewing angle of 176 degrees in all directions, and features improved viewing contrast and expanded color reproduction.
The Super-Sonic Wave Filter vibrates at supersonic speeds whenever the camera is on, expelling dust and preventing it from collecting on the low-pass filter or image sensor.
Olympus has also announced the Zuiko Digital 25mm f2.8 ES-2528 ultra slim snapshot lens, which is optimized for the E-420’s slim design. The lens is scheduled for release in May 2008. The expected Australian price is around AUD$349.