Olympus E-PL7

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oly e pl7It’s a selfie machine. The PEN E-PL7 Micro Four Thirds interchangeable lens camera features a new 180-degree downward flip touch LCD, selfie-dedicated mode and built-in Wi-Fi, combined with the enhanced Olympus Image Share app (OI.Share).

The camera has much of the same technology as the OM-D line. The TruePic VII image processor combines with a 16.05-megapixel Live MOS sensor and M.Zuiko lenses to deliver beautiful image quality with high resolution, superior colour reproduction and high sensitivity, all in a portable, compact and lightweight body, says the company.

The in-body 3-axis VCM image stabilization system is derived from the OM-D E-M10. This compensates for horizontal and vertical angular shifts (yaw and pitch) as well as camera shake along the optical axis (roll) which is especially common in one-handed shooting scenarios. This works with any lens.

The on-board Fast AF is Olympus’s fastest-ever AF system and uses 81 points that cover the whole image. Small AF Target and Super Spot AF modes make it possible to zoom in and focus accurately on small sections of the frame. The E-PL7 is also capable of capturing high-speed action with 8 fps sequential shooting, the fast processor supports continuous capture of up to 20 RAW frames or an unlimited number of JPEG frames, and the Continuous Auto Focus with Tracking mode tracks and captures moving subject as fast as 3.5 fps.

oly epl7 screenThe 3-inch high-definition touch LCD monitor automatically turns into a mirror display and activates into its “Selfie Mode” when tilted downward in the 180-degree position, for one-touch selfies. The shutter-release button appears on the screen so subjects can frame the image appropriately, shooting one second after the button is touched. Selfie interval shooting provides a fun way to capture images with a custom self-timer switching button that defaults to deliver three shots at one second intervals, giving subjects time to strike different poses. When an electronic zoom lens is attached, the zoom automatically adjusts to the wide-angle position so the user can quickly take their shot, incorporating the background as well.

The E-PL7’s bundled add-on flash helps users take beautiful selfies against nighttime backgrounds, and e-Portrait can be activated with a single touch for more beautiful skin textures. Also enhanced with selfies in mind is iAuto: Portrait settings have been added to common scene modes to automatically detect 42 types of scenes to match the subject and optimize for the ideal image.

Using the Olympus Image Share app, along with a smart phone, and quickly scanning the QR code displayed on the camera’s LCD, the smart phone syncs with the Wi-Fi network created by the camera. OI.Share shooting functions have evolved, making it possible to easily operate the custom self-timer for sequential and selfie interval shooting. Live View can be displayed on the smart phone, and the camera can be controlled by touching the smart phone display as if it were the camera itself, then users can send selected images to their smart device for immediate sharing on social media sites.

OI.Share has been enhanced with a number of remote shooting functions to expand the use of a variety of selfie options. Settings for single, sequential high and sequential low switching button, as well as controls for the timer bar and interval shooting, can all be easily accessed remotely on the user’s smart phone. A new movie button lets you quickly record a movie at customized settings, including customized time length for each movie clip. Live Bulb has been added to OI.Share, allowing users the ability to control and monitor the bulb photography process on a smart phone while the shutter is released. Images can also be geotagged through the OI.Share App, giving users a record of all of their adventures.

The E-PL7 is equipped with several new creative features, including two new Art Filters. The “Vintage” art filter transfers everyday images into a photo that looks to have withstood the test of time, and “Partial Colour“ enables users to utilize an intuitive colour ring to leave certain colours in an image while other colours are converted to monochrome to emphasize specific parts of a photo or subjects (18 colours are available). “Shade Effect“ is a new art effect that adds bands of shadows on the left and right, or top and bottom of the image. Photo Story has also been expanded to include Layout mode for a photo-album-style arrangement. “Panning“ is a new scene mode that matches the E-PL7’s movement to the subjects so users can track it for the optimal panning effect. And finally, a new movie effect, “Old Film Effect,” records video to look like old movies shot on film by adding noise, scratches and dust effects. {And to think cinematographers took great pains to prevent just those effects!]

For photographers who prefer composing their shots using an eyepiece, the E-PL7 is compatible with the optional high-definition VF-4 viewfinder with 1.48X magnification, a 2.36 million-dot LCD, eye-detect to turn it on at the right time, and intuitive functionality that enables real-time viewing of shooting conditions.

A new lithium-ion battery BLS-50 with capacity increased from 1150 mAh (BLS-5) to 1210 mAh (BLS-50), replaces the BLS-5. The BLS-50 is the same shape as the BLS-5 and can be used in Olympus models that support it.

The Olympus PEN E-PL7 will be available in late September in two configurations, with 14-42 mm f/3.5-5.6 II R lens, or body only (black or silver).

New lens and accessories

Olympus is also introducing a black version of its M.Zuiko Digital 12 mm f/2.0 lens. This single-focal-length, wide-angle lens, was previously only available in silver.

There’s also a genuine leather body jacket for the E-PL7, and a waterproofing case.

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