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Olympus' Camedia D-550 Zoom digital camera. Courtesy of Olympus, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Olympus announces D-550 Zoom digital camera! (UPDATED)
(Wednesday, May 8, 2002 - 10:00 EDT)

New model updates the D-510Z / D-520Z with a 3 megapixel imager...

Olympus has today announced a new digital camera following on from its Camedia D-510 Zoom and D-520 Zoom series, the Camedia D-550 Zoom. Featuring a 3 megapixel CCD imager and 2.8x optical zoom lens, the camera also adds a new 3:2 aspect ratio mode as well as the standard 4:3 for prints that match the standard 35mm film sizes.

The Olympus Camedia D-550 Zoom will ship in the USA this June at a cost of $499 (MSRP) / $399 (Estimated Street Price). Canadian pricing will be $599 (MSRP). Full specifications and product photos courtesy of Olympus follow:

Olympus Camedia D-550 Zoom
CCD Imager 3.0 Megapixel Effective
3.3 Megapixel Gross
Size 1 /2.5" (0.4") CCD
Lens Olympus multivariator 2 aspherical glass 2.8x zoom lens 5.8-16.2 mm
(36-100mm equivalent in 35mm photography)
Seamless Digital Zoom 10x (2.8x optical and 3.6x digital combined)
Aperture Range F2.9-5.6 (W) / F4.4-8.6 (T)
Shutter Speeds Program Auto: 1/1,000 sec. - 1/2 sec. / Night Scene Mode: 2 sec.
ISO Auto: 100-400 / Manual: 100, 200, 400 (equivalent)
Recording Mode(s) Still image: EXIF TIFF (non-compressed), EXIF JPEG, DCF (design rule for Camera File system), QuickTimeR Motion JPEG (Movie Mode)
Adjustable Resolutions 1,984 x 1,312 (3:2) TIFF, JPEG-High/Normal
1,984 x 1,488 TIFF, SHQ/HQ JPEG
1,600 x 1,200 TIFF, SQ JPEG-High/Normal
1,280 x 960 TIFF, SQ JPEG-High/Normal
1,024 x 768 TIFF, SQ JPEG-High/Normal
640 x 480 TIFF, SQ JPEG-High/Normal
320 x 240 @15fps QuickTime Motion JPEG
160 x 120 @15fps QuickTime Motion JPEG
DPOF (Digital Print Order Format) Print Reservation (Single, Multiple, All, Number of copy), Date/Time, Cropping
Optimum Image Enlargement N/A
True Pic Technology YES
Automatic Pixel Mapping YES
Image Adjustment modes Sharpness: Hard/Normal/Soft; Contrast: High/Standard/Low
Exposure Compensation: +/- 2 EV in 1/2 EV steps
Image Effects Noise Reduction: available at Shutter speeds of 1 second or longer in Night Scene Mode
Panorama Up to 10 frames stitchable automatically with CAMEDIA Master software when using Olympus brand SmartMedia™
Sequence 2 frames per second burst up to 8 frames in HQ mode
Viewfinder Optical real-image viewfinder with Diopter Adjustment and Autofocus /backlight LED
LCD 1.8" (4.5cm) Color TFT LCD (61,000 pixels)
Focusing System iESP Multi-Pattern AF (autofocus) TTL system (contrast detection), Spot AF, Full Time AF (Movie Mode)
Focusing Ranges Macro Mode 8" - 31"(0.2m-0.8m)
Standard AF 31" - Infinity (0.8m - Infinity)
One Touch Focus (Infinity)
Exposure Control Program Auto (f 2.9/4.4 - 8.6, 1/1,000 sec. - 1/2 sec.)
5 Auto Creative Scene Mode: Self Portrait/Portrait/Night Scene/Landscape/Landscape+Portrait
Metering System Digital ESP Multi-Pattern Meter, Spot
White Balance System iESP Multi-pattern auto TTL
4 Pre-set manual (Daylight, Overcast, Tungsten and Fluorescent)
Flash Built-in Automatic Pop Up Flash
Flash Modes Auto Flash for low and backlight
"Red-eye" Reduction Flash
Fill-in Flash
Flash Off
Flash Working Range Wide: 7.9" - 11.2' (0.2m - 3.4m) @ ISO 100
Tele: 31" - 7.6' (0.8m - 2.3m) @ISO 100
Flash Charging Time Less than 8 seconds (at normal temperature with new batteries)
Removable Media Card 3V (3.3V) SmartMedia™ card (4, 8, 16, 32, 64, and 128 MB)
Selftimer/Remote 12 second delay Selftimer
Settings Memorization On, Default
Outer Connectors USB connector (USB Auto-Connect), NTSC Video Out, DC input
Auto-Connect USB Compatible with Windows 98 rev2 / ME / 2000 Pro / XP - MacOS 8.6 - 9.01 / OSX (10.1)
Image Playback Still: Index display (4/9/16), 1.5x - 4x enlargement by 0.5x steps, Slide-show, Scene rotation; Movie: Normal Playback, Reverse Playback, Frame by Frame
Image Editing Still: Resize, Cropping, B&W, Sepia; Movie: Index, Edit
Operating Environment Operation: 32 F -104F (0C - 40C) 30-90% Humidity
Storage: -4 F - 140F (-20C - 60C) 10-90% Humidity
Power Supply Main Power Source: 2 x LB-01 (CR-3V) Lithium batteries
4 x AA Ni-MH rechargeable batteries
4 x AA Lithium batteries
4 x AA NiCd rechargeable batteries
4 x AA Alkaline batteries (Manganese batteries cannot be used)
AC Power: C-7AU AC adapter (optional)
Date/Time Calendar Simultaneous recording into image date
Calendar Automatic up to the year 2031
Size 4.6" W x 2.6" H x 1.9" D (117.5m W x 66mm H x 49.5mm D)
Weight 8.5 Oz./ 240 g without batteries and SmartMedia™
More Photos

UPDATED 2002-05-08 09:10ET: The Camedia D-550 ZOOM will apparently sell in Europe as the Camedia C-300ZOOM and a UK retail price of £299.
Source: Olympus America Inc.

Original Source Press Release:


D-550 ZOOM features Exclusive 3 Megapixel CCD, World's First Virtual Mode Dial and Long-Life Battery Circuitry

May 8, 2002, Melville, NY--Proving once again that Nothing's Impossible, Olympus America announced today the CAMEDIA D-550 ZOOM, which offers consumers everything they're looking for in a point & shoot camera with absolutely no compromises in quality--a high resolution 3 Megapixel CCD; 2.8X optical zoom with a totally seamless 10X zoom (2.8X optical & 3.6X digital); 5 Scene Program modes with the camera world's first Virtual Mode Dial; an improved easy menu navigation system; large 1.8" LCD; and high-end imaging features in a comfortable, compact and easy-to-use stylish clamshell body for only $399.

The D-550 ZOOM is the smart choice for all kinds of photographers, from the first time buyer who wants a high-resolution digital camera with optical zoom to previous digital camera owners who want to move up to a higher resolution digital camera at an affordable price.

Picture Quality
The Olympus D-550 ZOOM uses a newly designed 3 Megapixel CCD and offers sophisticated image quality features normally found on more advanced Olympus digital cameras. Olympus' renowned high-quality 2 aspherical glass element 2.8x, 5.8-16.2mm zoom lens (36-100mm equivalent in 35mm photography) is matched to the CCD and designed for digital photography producing superior image quality. Advanced color management settings in the 5-Scene Program modes--Portrait, Landscape, Landscape+Portrait, Night Scene and Self Portrait mode--always give users optimum color and picture result. Additionally, the D-550 ZOOM features Automatic Noise Reduction technology for crisp, clean colors and sharp detail even when shooting long exposures in low light of one second and longer in the Night Scene mode. Olympus's exclusive TruePic™ technology optimizes the image quality for picture sharpness, contrast, true colors and gradation in all picture resolutions, along with Automatic Pixel Mapping, which analyzes the CCD, re-mapping it for maximum CCD performance.

New Modes
The new 3:2 Recording Mode in the D-550 ZOOM allows users to create perfectly sized 4 x 6 prints along with a variety of other popular print sizes. The 3:2 aspect ratio is the standard image ratio for conventional 35mm film cameras, and the most requested print aspect ratio for photographic framing. The exclusive Virtual Mode Dial with the 5-Scene Program Modes lets anyone easily adjust the mode with a visually supported control circle menu displayed on the LCD for maximum ease of use and "the perfect shots."

Ease Of Use
The D-550 ZOOM offers Olympus' renowned easy to use USB Auto-Connect, hassle-free for PC connectivity and downloading with most of the latest operating systems such as Windows XP and Mac OSX. Simply plug the camera into the USB port and you're ready to go.

Battery Life
Battery life is one of the most critically important features in a digital camera, and the D-550 ZOOM has extremely long battery life allowing literally hundreds of shots in normal operation with four AA alkaline batteries (while using the LCD display and flash 50% of the time). With the LCD and flash turned off, the camera can capture thousands of images using the same AA alkaline batteries. When the Olympus' long-life LB01 (CR3V) batteries are used, battery-life is extended by about 3 times for even more of your favorite photos.

The D-550 ZOOM will be available in June for $399. It comes with a 16MB SmartMedia card, USB cable, video cable, carrying strap, 4 AA alkaline batteries, CAMEDIA Master 4.0 software, manual, Quick Start Guide, and warranty card.

U.S. Pricing:
D-550 ZOOM Street Price: $399 (U.S.)
D-550 ZOOM SRP: $499 (U.S.)
Canadian Pricing:
D-550 ZOOM SRP: $599 (Canada)

For more information, contact Olympus America Inc, Consumer Products Group, Two Corporate Center Dr., Melville, NY 11747-3157, ph: (631) 844-5000 (800) 622-6372, Fax: (631) 844-5262 or the Olympus Web Site: http://www.olympusamerica.com.

# # #

ABOUT OLYMPUS - Nothing's Impossible
Based in Melville, New York, Olympus America distributes a wide range of products for the consumer, scientific, health care, commercial and industrial markets. These include film cameras that provide the ultimate combination of performance and style, and digital cameras that produce the most realistic digital images yet available. Microcassette and digital voice recorders, binoculars, personal photo printers, medical and industrial endoscopes, biological and metallurgical microscopes and measuring instruments, clinical analyzers, and other high technology products. Olympus America is responsible for sales in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central and South America.

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