Olympus Introduces New Entry-Level Series

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August 29, 2005 – Olympus today added an FE series to their entry level digital camera selection, with the release of the 6 megapixel FE-120, 5 megapixel FE-110, and 4 megapixel FE-100. The cameras are heavily automatic and oriented for beginner users. Consumers should expect the new models to begin shipping in September, at an estimated price of $229.99 for the FE-120, $199.99 for the FE-110, and $149.99 for the FE-100.

"Our new FE series cameras are all about effortless picture taking,’ said Naoki Tai, product manager at Olympus Imaging America in a statement announcing the new line.

Geared towards entry level users, the FE line features a "One Touch" design for simplified operation and an onscreen help menu. The camera contains separate buttons for shooting, playback, and delete functions, and can print directly to a PictBridge compliant printer.

The FE-120 features a 3x optical zoom lens, with a 35mm equivalent range of 38-114mm and an aperture range of f/2.8-f/4.9. The camera at the head of the FE line features the same TruePic Turbo image processor as Olympus’ higher-end models in order speed up communication with its 1/2.5-inch CCD sensor.

There are 19 shooting modes on the FE-120, but remaining true to the line’s simplified nature, the camera doesn’t offer any manual controls. Users will be have some control over exposure settings using the exposure compensation feature, available in a +/- 2 EV range in 1/2 EV steps. The sensitivity range offered spans from ISO 64-320, set automatically by the camera. Video capture is available at a maximum resolution of 320 x 240 at 30 frames per second.

The FE-120 has an 85,000 pixel 1.8" LCD screen, but there is no optical viewfinder. The camera measures 4.2 x 2.2 x 1.4 inches and weighs 4.9 ounces without AA batteries or an xD-memory card.

Rounding out the FE line, Olympus also released the 5 megapixel FE-110 and 4 megapixel FE 100 today. Both cameras have a 2.8x optical zoom lens with a 35mm equivalent range of 38-106mm and an aperture range of f/3.0-f/5.0. Video capture is limited to a maximum of 15 frames per second at 320 x 240. The cameras have 28 megabytes of internal memory and can use an xD card.

With a simplified interface, both cameras offer six shooting modes and no manual controls except exposure compensation. The ISO range, which is set automatically, is 64-320 for the FE-110 and 64-400 for the FE-100.

Both cameras have a 1.5-inch LCD screen that manages to pack in 130,000 pixels, 15,000 more pixels than what Olympus quotes for its 2.5-inch LCD screens. Neither camera has a viewfinder.

The FE-110 and FE-100 measure 3.5 x 2.5 x 1.5 inches and weigh 4.9 ounces without AA batteries or an xD memory card.

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