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Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Olympus VR-330: Europe-only variant of the VR-320
(Tuesday, February 8, 2011 - 01:01 EST)

Alongside three announcements for the US market, Olympus Europe has today announced one further model for which we know of no US plans: the Olympus VR-330.

Based around the same 14 megapixel CCD image sensor and Olympus-branded 12.5x optical zoom lens, as the VR-320, the Olympus VR-330 offers 35mm-equivalent focal lengths from a generous 24mm wide angle to a powerful 300mm telephoto. As you'd expect given the telephoto reach on offer, the Olympus VR330 does offer true mechanical (sensor shift type) image stabilization, as one half of Olympus' "Dual Image Stabilization" system for fighting blur.

The rear panel of the VR330 offers up a 3.0-inch LCD display with approximately 154k pixel resolution, double the total pixel count of the VR320's screen. Sadly there's no optical or electronic viewfinder on this model. ISO sensitivity in the Olympus VR-330 ranges from a low of ISO 100 to a maximum of ISO 1,600 equivalent.

Like its sibling, the Olympus VR330 provides 720p high def video capture. However, it differs in that it also offers an HDMI port, allowing viewing of images or movies by connecting the camera to a high definition television. The Olympus VR320, by contrast, has only a standard-def video output. Both cameras provide a USB 2.0 High-Speed connection for data transfer. Power comes from a proprietary lithium ion battery pack, and data is stored either in a modest 33MB of internal memory, on on SD or SDHC memory cards -- but not the latest SDXC types.

The only other difference between the two models is that the VR330 includes a 3D Photo mode, which captures two images from slightly differing angles, and then combines the result into an MPO-format image suitable for viewing on 3D-capable displays.

No plans have been announced to sell the Olympus VR-330 in the US market. In Europe, we understand that the VR-330 will ship later this month, with pricing of about €169. For more details, read our Olympus VR330 preview.

Olympus VR-330
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Camera TypeCompact
Model NumberNorth America: VR-330
Dimensions4.0 x 2.3 x 1.1 in.
(101 x 58 x 29 mm)
Weight5.6 oz (158 g)
Image Capture
Sensor TypeCCD
1/2.3" (approx. 0.43 in. diagonal)
14.00 megapixels (effective)
Aspect Ratio4:3, 16:9
Image Dimensions4288 x 3216 (13.8 megapixels)
4288 x 2416 (10.4 megapixels)
3264 x 2448 (8.0 megapixels)
2560 x 1920 (4.9 megapixels)
2048 x 1536 (3.1 megapixels)
1600 x 1200 (1.9 megapixels)
1280 x 960 (1.2 megapixels)
640 x 480 (0.3 megapixels)
Image Preview / Review
LCD3.0 in. diagonal
460,000 dots (approx. 153,000 pixels)
Playback Zoom10.0x max
Lens TypeOlympus lens; 9 elements in 8 groups, 4/7 aspherical lenses
12.5x optical zoom
Image StabilizationYes
Focal Length4.2 - 52.5mm (actual)
24 - 300mm (35mm equivalent)
Aperture Rangef/3.0 (wide) / f/5.9 (tele) - ???
Focusing SystemCCD Contrast Detection; iESP Auto, Spot AF, Face Detection AF, AF Tracking
Has AF assist lamp
ISO SensitivityAuto, High Auto, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
Shutter Speed4 - 1/2000 second
Exposure ModesProgram
Metering ModesDigital ESP Metering, Face Detection AE
Exposure Compensation+/- 2.0EV in 1/3EV increments
White BalanceImage Sensor - Auto, Daylight, Overcast, Tungsten, Fluorescent
Internal FlashModes: Auto, Red-Eye Reduction, Fill-in, Off
Range: ISO 800: Wide: 0.66ft (0.2m) - 15.4ft (4.7m), Tele: 2.95 ft (0.9m) - 7.9ft (2.4m)
Scene ModesMagic Mode, 3D Mode, Scene Modes (1. PORTRAIT, 2. LANDSCAPE, 3. NIGHT. 4. NIGHT+PORTRAIT, 5. SPORT, 6. INDOOR, 7. CANDLE, 8. SELF PORTRAIT, 9. SUNSET, 10. FIREWORKS, 11. CUISINE, 12. BEACH & SNOW, 13. DOCUMENTS, 14. PET); Magic Filter (Pop Art, Pinhole, Fisheye, Drawing, Soft Focus, Punk, Sparkle)
Digital ZoomUp to 4x
Self TimerYes, 2, 12 seconds
Movie FormatAVI (Motion JPEG) with audio
Recording MediumSD/MMC including SDHC, Built-in
File SystemFAT16, FAT32
File FormatJPEG
VideoHigh definition: Yes (HDMI)
Standard definition: Yes, NTSC / PAL switchable
ComputerUSB 2.0 High Speed
OtherMulti-Terminal (USB Connector, Audio/Video Output), HDMI
Battery TypeLithium-ion rechargeable
Battery Form FactorProprietary
Product Bundle
SoftwareOLYMPUS [ib] software
Battery / Charger1 x Proprietary Lithium-ion rechargeable battery and charger
Flash Memory33.0MB Built-in
Internal MicrophoneYes
Internal SpeakerYes
Tripod MountYes
Remote ControlNo
NotesSensor-shift Image Stabiliza ion, 3D Mode, Magic Art Filters for Still and HD movies (includes Pop Art, Pin Hole, Fish-eye, Soft Focus, Drawing, Sparkle and Punk), 720p HD videos, Beauty mode, AF Tracking, 14 Scene modes, Help Guide, Intelligent Auto, Shadow Adjustment, HMDI output. Available in Europe.
More Photos
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!
Olympus' VR-330 digital camera. Photo provided by OLYMPUS Europa Holding GmbH. Click for a bigger picture!

Original Source Press Release:

OLYMPUS VR Series gets 12.5x zoom, HDMI and 3D

VR-330 & VR-320 compacts offer even better value

Prices of Olympus’ two new VR cameras are hard to believe

Hamburg, 8 February 2011 – Olympus’ new VR Series compacts are all about value. The priceless value of capturing high-quality movies and stills with no effort at all – and the unbeatable value for money of a compact camera that’s packed with fun-filled technical wizardry. An impressive zoom lens, super-slim design and clever technology were the hallmarks of the VR-310 launched in January. Now Olympus introduces two more VRs with even better spec: the VR-320 and the top-of-the-range VR-330. Both come with a more powerful 12.5x super wide 24-300mm* optical zoom lens that combines with advanced automatic features to deliver brilliant images – no skill required. The VR-330 even adds 3D still photos, a bright 460,000 dot, three inch LCD and an HDMI output that makes it simpler to review movies and photos on a High Definition TV. In this category, both cameras offer unparalleled performance for the lowest possible price. The VR-330 and VR-320 are available from February 2011. For €169 and €149 respectively. Strange but true.

Miniature miracles
Once again, Olympus ’ optical engineers have the competition scratching their heads, wondering how they managed to squeeze a precision 12.5x super wide optical zoom lens (24-300mm*) into two beautifully slim compacts that measure just 19.3mm deep (with the zoom retracted). Stand a VR Series next to another camera with a 12x zoom and it becomes clear what a big difference a few millimetres can make. And the VRs still give their users the added flexibility of a category-busting super wide zoom lens that can zoom way out wide or right up close – and capture all those special shots that slim cameras normally can’t. Whether it’s a radiant 14 Megapixel still photo or a blur-free movie in 720p HD, in this price bracket it’s hard to see how picture quality could get any better than this.

Major advantages
Even by VR Series standards, for a compact camera the VR-330 is a bit special. It comes with optional automatic 3D photo mode, so users can enjoy the enhanced realism of 3D stills that appear to pop right out of the screen, especially when viewed on a big HD TV. The VR-330 is also HDMI compatible, so when it ’s time to play back, users can control their camera from their usual TV remote – and there’s no loss of Olympus HD quality. That’s typical of a host of Olympus-unique features that make both new VR Series cameras a delight to use. Nothing unnecessary that would add to the price, just clever, practical features that make it easier to take great pictures. In addition to Dual Image Stabilisation (virtually eliminates blurring), there’s i-Auto and Shadow Adjustment Technology that automatically choose the right settings for tricky conditions or subjects. Users also have a choice of no fewer than seven of the Magic Filters featured on Olympus’ high-end cameras, so they can get creative and add artistic effects to their shots at the touch of a button.

The OLYMPUS VR-330 and the OLYMPUS VR-320 are both available from February in silver, black, red and blue. For just €169 and €149 respectively.

Distinguishing features:



  • 3” colour LCD (460,000 dots) for easily framing, reviewing and sharing shots • HDMI output / control for a one-cable connection to an HD TV with no loss of HD video or audio quality

Creativity & Flexibility

  • 3D photo shooting for the enhanced realism of 3D



  • 3” colour LCD (230,400 dots) for easily framing, reviewing and sharing shots

Common features:

Image Quality

  • 12.5x super wide angle optical zoom (24-300mm*) for superb close-ups and group shots

  • 720p HD Movie with sound for capturing movies in excellent quality

  • 14 Megapixels for high-quality full-size movies, stills and prints

  • Dual Image Stabilisation for reducing blur with fast-moving shots


  • Face Detection and Shadow Adjustment Technology for capturing people’s faces just as you want them

  • Intelligent Auto Mode (i-Auto) and AF Tracking for easy setting and focussing

  • Scene Mode for automatic settings that suit specific conditions
    (e.g., Landscape, Night)

Creativity & Flexibility

  • Magic Filters for adding creative effects to still photos:
    Punk, Pop Art, Pin Hole, Drawing, Fish Eye, Soft Focus, plus new Sparkle

Other key features

  • Full-metal, super-slim body for an attractive, robust design

  • [ib] software for browsing, organising and viewing images by person, place, location or event

  • ISO 100 to 1600

  • SDHC memory card compatible**

  • USB battery charging
    * 35mm camera equivalent.
    ** SD is a trademark of SD Card Association.


3D Mode (3D photo shooting)
Captures two shots of a scene from two different angles to create still photos that can be viewed with the added excitement and realism of 3D (on a 3D-compatible display). There are two 3D settings: Manual and Automatic. In both settings, the camera indicates when it is time to pan. In Automatic, when the camera is panned horizontally after the first shot, it automatically takes the second shot at the ideal moment. Manual is for 3D experts – the user decides when to take the second shot.

Face Detection technology
A technology that searches for faces in a composition and recognises them as the main subject. It then automatically puts them in focus and optimally adjusts exposure to create an image that ’s sharp in the right places and ideally exposed. Face Detection Technology can detect up to 12 faces.

AF Tracking
This system tracks a moving subject automatically and keeps it continually in focus – for optimally focused and exposed pictures. It even memorises the subject when it goes out of frame and resumes tracking when it reappears.

Dual Image Stabilisation
Providing two-fold protection, this special function helps to avoid image blur caused by camera shake or fast-moving subjects. It combines high ISO values with a CCD-based mechanical image stabiliser, where a built-in gyro sensor detects camera movement and adjusts the CCD accordingly.

HD Movie (720p High Definition)
High Definition video (HD video) delivers a high-quality movie experience when played back on an HD TV. In HD Movie Mode, the camera captures HD video using the advanced AVI Motion JPEG movie compression format at a resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels.

i-Auto Mode
The “intelligent-Auto” mode uses advanced automatic detection technology that enables the camera to automatically recognise up to six of the most commonly shot scenes. This makes it possible to capture perfect photos without the need for manual settings.

[ib] software
Olympus now offers [ib], an integrated photo browsing and organising software. Images can be organised by person with a new face recognition technology, by place with a GPS-based mapping function or by event.

Magic Filters
Make it possible to create special artistic effects in still images directly in the camera.

  • Fish-Eye: Simulates the dramatic effect of a fish eye lens, lending a new perspective to the whole scene with a “wrap-around” effect.

  • Pin Hole: Reduces peripheral brightness, like with an image seen through a pinhole. A unique colour tone results in a style that has an air of secrecy or portrays the feeling of being lost in another dimension or space.

  • Pop Art: Enhances colours, making them stronger and more vivid, to create high-impact pictures that express the light-hearted feeling of the pop art style.

  • Punk: Displays images primarily in contrasting pink and black to give them an edgy, punk-inspired feel.

  • Drawing: Transforms images into line drawings to give the impression that subjects have been sketched by an artist.

  • Soft Focus: Creates a soft tone that gives pictures an ethereal, otherworldly atmosphere. It renders pictures as though they were veiled in heavenly light, without obscuring details such as hair or flower petals.

  • Sparkle: Adds twinkling lights to objects.

Scene Mode
Offers a choice of different scenes to suit the subject being captured, for example, landscape, night, beach and snow or pet. The camera automatically adjusts a host of parameters to achieve the best possible result for the chosen scene.

Shadow Adjustment Technology (SAT)
A technology designed to improve exposure for pictures with dark areas. Using a sensor that works much like the human eye, dark parts of a composition (e.g., a shadow under a tree) are identified and the camera then adjusts the exposure settings accordingly for those areas. The result is a more realistic and detailed picture.

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