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Back in September last year I reviewed the Olympus mju 760 and mju 780, a pair of 7.1-megapixel cameras which at the time represented the bottom and middle of the Olympus' premium range of weatherproof pocket compacts. While both of these cameras are still just about available, the top of the range is now covered by today's camera, the new 8-megapixel mju 830.
A quick glance at the pictures of the camera on this and the next two pages will quickly tell you that the mju 830 is simply an upgraded version of the 780. It has exactly the same all-metal body with the same dimensions (99.6 x 55.1 x 24 mm) and the same weight (125g minus battery); it has the same 5x zoom lens with the same focal length range (36 - 180mm equivalent); it has the same 2.5-inch 230k LCD monitor, and apart from the more powerful sensor it has exactly the same specification. That's not entirely a bad thing, because the mju 780 is a very well designed camera, and the same can of course be said of the 830. The body shape is very slim, with an attractive wedge shape that means it slips comfortably into a pocket, but its still comfortable and easy to hold.
The mju 830 is currently available for around £190, which compares favourably with other 8MP image-stabilised compacts with longer zooms, such as the Canon IXUS 860 IS (£215), or the Panasonic FX-33 (£215). Its closest competition may be the new Nikon CoolPix S510, also £190, although that camera has only a 3x zoom lens and isn't weatherproof.
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