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Olympus E-620 Digital SLR Review

Key Specifications

  • Review Price: £595.00

After a flurry of models from the company, including the new semi-pro E-30 and E-450, an upgrade to the entry-level E-420, Olympus has added another completely new E series DSLR in the form of the E-620. Although at first glance it looks like a replacement to the E-520, the 12-megapixel E-620 is destined to sit between that and the E-30.

With the raft of new models and introduction of the new mFT compact from Olympus due later this month, the E-620 shouldn’t be overlooked. The E-620 has the same 12.3-megapixel resolution L-MOS sensor and 2.7-inch articulated screen with live view as the high-end E-30. And it doesn’t stop there. Like the E-520, the new model has built-in image stabilisation and one of the most effective automated sensor cleaning systems. Olympus tend to offer models with similar sensors along with firmware delivered features based on the current processor capabilities. Where their models tend to vary most is in body design, so the E-620 has many key features of the E-30 but in a much smaller package.

In this instance, it’s the TruPic III+ processor from the E-30, which adds a range of image aspect ratio options (16:9, 3:2, 6:6) previewing of white-balance, exposure compensation, and shadow adjustment (dynamic range enhancement) while also, it’s claimed, improving colour rendition and noise levels. That last point is significant.

At around a quarter the size of a full frame sensor (36x24mm), noise levels and the narrower than average dynamic range of the (17.3x13mm) FourThirds imager have been a concern in the past. With a 20-percent increase in pixel count and sensitivity running up to ISO3200, double that (actually 1EV) of the E-520, the E-620 and E-30 have the highest resolution and sensitivity of any Olympus DSLR to date.

It’s also true meanwhile that while features are added according to the processor, some are reduced in scope. Take the multi-exposure control for instance. The E-620 includes two-frame multi-exposure with overlay and ISO gain option, whereas the E-30 can take as many as four exposures on the same frame. Neither is the E-620 quite as a fast when it comes to sequential shooting. At a maximum 4fps, it’s around 0.5fps faster than the E-520, but doesn’t have quite the lick of the semi-pro E-30’s 5fps. And while continuous shooting of JPEGs is only limited by the card capacity, the five frame RAW buffer is well behind that of the 15-frame capacity of the E-30.

Like that particular model, Olympus is also heavily promoting the addition of six effects filters, or Art Filters. Effects include a super saturated Pop Art, Grainy Film (B&W), Soft Focus, Pin Hole, Pale and Light Colour, and a silky Soft Focus option. At first glance these seem a bit gimmicky but when used appropriately they can come in quite handy.

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