We've just received a production Olympus E-330 (Evolt), the first true DSLR with a live preview capability and the first DSLR with a next-generation Live MOS image sensor - our initial impressions will be posted here.Update: Panasonic launches DSLR sharing E-330 design components.
I thought I'd just mention that there has been some impatience noticed from some over the limited content of this hands-on preview, to date. The arrival of the camera on Monday was a bit of surprise and I've had to fit time in with the E-330 around other scheduled work. Plus the weather here hasn't been very good, so decent sample shots have not been possible so far, so please bear with me - this page will be updated and I will also add further comments (and look forward to your own too) on the DSLR forum
Update: DXO Analyzer 2.0 noise test comparisons.
Olympus E-330 launch news comment.
E-330 official press release and technical specifications.
E-330 first impressions forum discussion.
We've just received an E-330 (Evolt) for review. It's a boxed production sample and we've just had enough time to run off a few simple test shots today.
Initial impressions are encouraging:
The E-330 may be descended from the unloved E-300, but it's a subtly improved design in both appearance and handling.
Live view operation in Mode A and Mode B hold no surprises - using it makes one wonder why it wasn't introduced a long time ago.
Although the optical TL viewfinder is less bright than an E-500, which has a conventional pentaprism arrangement, it won't be a critical issue for many potential buyers. The finder is less bright and saturated than the E-500's, but this is slightly compensated by a larger magnification, so the frame appears larger.
Noise - a simple side by side image comparison with an E-500 seems to indicate a significant improvement in noise suppression with the E-330.
DXO Analyzer 2.0 luminance noise test results back this up, with the E-330 scoring better than the E-330 at every ISO level.
Nevertheless, signal to noise ratio figures only tell half the story. The Canon EOS-350D/Rebel XT has a good reputation for visible noise suppression and yet its s/n results are the worst here. Meanwhile, the Nikon D50 is visibly the best.
These DXO Analyzer grain structure plots (ISO 800)show that Canon's unusual elliptical shape and slim base. The more slim the base, as viewed from above, the finer the grain effect will be. The taller the peak, the more variable the difference will be from one grain unit to the next.
Although the 350D grain structure is tall, it's narrow and is slightly elliptical in profile.
The Olympus E-500 grain peak is lower than the Canon EOS-350D's, but its profile viewed vertically is more prominent.
The E-330 grain structure has a lower peak and its base is is slightly narrower thean the E-500's, though not as narrow as the Canon EOS-350D.
Finally, the Nikon D50 combines a low peak and a reasonably narrow base, together amounting to the least obstrusive noise characteristics at ISO 800.
Colour balance - the E-330 exhibits a less warm colour balance than the E-500; more neutral by far, with less red sensitivity.
There is more detail on our initial impressions on the DPNow DSLR discussion forum board
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