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The following is an unedited press release, shown as received from the company represented. We've elected to present selected releases without editorial comment, as a way to provide our readers more information without further overtaxing our limited editorial resources. To avoid any possible confusion or conflict of interest, the Imaging Resource will always clearly distinguish between company-provided press releases and our own editorial views and content.

PRESS RELEASE: Olympus Enhances Digital Cameras With New "TruePic TURBO" Image Processor

Superior Imaging Quality and Faster Processing Speed Instantly Deliver Remarkable Images

Melville, New York, February 12, 2004 - Olympus today announced that its latest digital camera models - the C-8080 Wide Zoom, C-770 Ultra Zoom, C-765 Ultra Zoom, Stylus 410 Digital, D-580 Zoom and D-540 Zoom - now incorporate TruePic TURBO™, an innovative new image processor that significantly improves image quality and delivers faster overall processing speeds for rapid startup, shutter release and playback.

"Digital camera image quality and performance are directly affected by three main components: the camera lens, the image sensor, and the image processor," said Richard Campbell, product marketing director for digital, Olympus America Inc. "Of these components the image processor plays a pivotal role as the 'brains' of the digital camera. Olympus cameras with TruePic TURBO produce clearer and more color-accurate photos and have noticeably faster startup and shot-to-shot recycle times."

The major benefits of the Olympus TruePic TURBO Image Processor are enhanced image quality and processing speed. The name TruePic TURBO itself communicates these attributes - the "true-to-life" high image quality that produces sharp, clear, and realistic images, and the high-speed "turbo" response that enables users to capture images of fast-paced action.

Improved Image Quality
The TruePic TURBO Image Processor enhances image quality in three key areas: color fidelity (range of color, saturation and brightness); signal-to-noise response (relationship of accurate electrical signals to unwanted signals like static disturbances creating noise); and high-resolution image clarity (sharpness). It achieves these improvements in image quality by incorporating advanced technologies:

Proper Gamma II Technology
Unlike conventional systems that take color information from the CCD and apply the same mid-tone contrast ranges (gamma) to both the color and luminance (brightness) signals, Olympus' Proper Gamma II technology separates the color and luminance signals and calculates the optimum gamma (mid-tone contrast range) while maintaining the correct black to white range for each type of signal. As a result, the camera's ability to recognize subtle tonal gradations from dark to light is significantly enhanced, and the colors of the original subject are faithfully rendered.

Advanced Noise Filter II Technology
Random Pattern Noise (RPN) is a type of noise that can appear in digital images. It is seen in images taken at a high ISO or in the darker areas of a picture. In this event, noise is seen in a picture taken under normal conditions and is seen as mainly random noise. The Noise Filter controls edge adjustment by actively checking an image part by part. It is most efficient in lower contrast portions of images such as blue sky or skin color.

Advanced SF Filter Technology
To deliver enhanced high-resolution image clarity and detail, the Advanced SF Filter uses a high-level filtering process based on exclusive Olympus image signal analysis technologies. The Advanced SF filter not only maintains the highlights and shadowed areas of the image, but also opens up the overall contrast range so that a greater degree of tonal values can be rendered in the final image.

Faster Processing Speeds
In addition to speeding up image data processing for the large image files generated by high-pixel-count digital cameras, TruePic TURBO also improves camera responsiveness and operating ease. It closely integrates the image processor's engine and hardware elements to eliminate unnecessary processing tasks, accelerating system startup and other internal camera processes. As a result, the time it takes for the camera to start up, to engage the shutter release so that an image is captured, for the image processing to occur, for the image to be recorded to the media card, and for image playback are all significantly sped up for more responsive camera operation.

Olympus is a precision technology leader, designing and delivering innovative solutions in healthcare and consumer electronics worldwide.

Olympus works collaboratively with its customers and its parent company, Tokyo-based Olympus Corporation, to leverage R&D investment in precision technology and manufacturing processes across diverse business lines. These include:

Gastrointestinal endoscopes, accessories, and minimally invasive surgical products;
Advanced clinical and research microscopes;
Lab automation systems, chemistry-immuno and blood bank analyzers and reagents; and
Digital and film cameras, and digital voice recorders.

In the U. S. and Canada, Olympus serves healthcare, scientific and commercial laboratory markets with integrated product solutions and financial, educational and consulting services that help customers efficiently, reliably, safely, and easily achieve superior results. Olympus is the leader in gastrointestinal endoscopy and clinical and educational microscopes. The company's market-leading consumer electronics business spans North and South America. For more information, visit www.olympusamerica.com.

(First posted on Thursday, February 12, 2004 at 16:39 EST)

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