Olympus E-510 SLR Review

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Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR




Flash, I/O, Storage & Power



Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

The E-510's flash pops up automatically in low light or back lit conditions or can be opened with the Flash Direct Button. The flash that has modes for Auto, Red-eye reduction, Slow synchro (1st curtain or 2nd curtain selectable), Slow synchro with Red-eye reduction, Fill-in and Flash off. You can set the shutter speed that will be used when the flash fires between 1/60 to 1/180.

Olympus lists the FL-36 or FL-50 external flash units can be attached to the EVOLT's hot shoe and offer full TTL flash control.



Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

Designed specifically for use with digital cameras, the Olympus FL-36 rounds out the comprehensive lineup of "Designed for Digital" accessories for the E-System line of Digital SLR cameras and other prosumer models from Olympus. The FL-36 (shown here mounted on the E-330) flash offers the robust and full-featured functionality of the larger FL-50 combined with cost effectiveness.

The FL-36 Electronic Flash is specifically designed for digital with an accurate 1/8 step illumination control to provide the precision required by digital cameras, while minimizing illumination reduction. The built-in wide-angle diffuser panel will allow the flash to provide even illumination with wide angle lenses like the new Zuiko Digital 14mm-42mm zoom. The inclusion of a lockable bounce and swivel mechanism offers a variety of bounce photography options including left-right, as well as top-bottom in addition to a compact zoom head to accommodate lenses from wide angle to telephoto.


Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

The FL-36 also features an energy circuit that improves recharge rates and enables the flash to operate on just two AA batteries or one CR-3 Volt lithium. In addition, the FL-36 incorporates an ultra-precision mounting technology communicating with the E-1, E-300 and E-510 for control. The FL-36 is compact, lightweight and extremely portable, and is approximately 25% shorter and 35% lighter than the larger FL-50 flash.

This compact flash unit achieves higher guide numbers than comparable SLR film cameras even while maintaining wide-angle light distribution. The Guide Number is 117 feet (36 meters) at ISO 100. You'll notice the difference when using it in combination with a wide-angle lens on the EVOLT. Accurate, 1/8-step illumination control provides the precision required by digital cameras.



Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

The E-510 features camera to PC communication with a multifunction I/O port that uses provided cables to connect to a PC/Macintosh supporting USB 2 or a TV. Images can be viewed on an external monitor via the Video Out port, the signal is selectable for NTSC or PAL format. Connecting the camera to a PC running Windows Vista or a Macintosh running OS X 10.4 allowed me to either copy the images to my hard drive or edit the images in Windows Vista Photo Gallery or Apple's iPhoto respectively. Older computer operating systems require a driver to "talk" to the camera. Olympus also provides their Master 2 editing software on a CD.



Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

The E-510 can be remotely operated with the optional RM-1 wireless infrared controller. The maximum ange is approximately 15 feet indoors and 9 feet outdoors (in front, within 15° of center of the camera). Another optional control is the Remote Cable Release (RM-UC1) that allows the user to take pictures over long exposures without shaking the camera. Additionally, it offers the possibility of locking the release button for bulb exposure. The RM-UC1 connects to the camera's USB connector.



Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

Images can be stored on CompactFlash Type I/II, Microdrive, xD-Picture Card (Dual-Slot) memory cards and the E-510 can use more than one type of memory card at a time and even copy images from one card to another. The E-510 does not have any internal storage.


Approximate File Sizes





Olympus EVOLT E-510 Digital SLR

The EVOLT E510 is powered by the Olympus BLM-1 Lithium-ion rechargeable battery pack that fits inside the hand grip. This is a 7.2v, 1500mAh high capacity battery and is used in several other Olympus cameras (E-1, E-300, C-8080WZ). The charge time averaged 3 hours in the supplied Olympus BCM-2 charger.





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