Steve's Digicams - Breaking News - Olympus 03/02/03 Press Release


Press Release - March 2, 2003

Olympus Previews Prototype Four Thirds Digital SLR System at PMA

World's First 100% All-Digital SLR System Based On New Four Thirds Digital Standard

Olympus 4/3 SLR, lenses, booster and flash

Las Vegas, NV, March 2, 2003 - Olympus America Inc. previews a prototype of its pioneering new Digital SLR System at the PMA 2003 Annual Convention and Trade Show this month. The Olympus Digital SLR System is the world's first 100 percent all-digital system with lenses and body designed to perfectly match the image sensor for unmatched digital performance. Based on a 4/3-type image sensor, this new SLR system is an uncompromising realization of the full benefits of pure digital photographic technology.

"Olympus is leading the industry in a bold new direction as the world's first manufacturer to build a 100 percent all-digital SLR system from the ground up," said John Knaur, Senior Product Manger, Olympus America Inc. "The Olympus Digital SLR System is the ultimate light-mastering digital camera system, offering professional photographers powerful advantages in terms of image quality, camera and lens size, durability, and speed."

The Four Thirds Digital SLR System features interchangeable digital lenses designed to maximize image sensor performance. In contrast, when conventional 35mm film lenses are used with digital cameras, insufficient light at the edges of the image sensor can result in reduced color definition, particularly when shooting with wide-angle lenses. In addition, the 4/3-type image sensor size has allowed the dimensions and weight of the lenses to be reduced considerably for easier handling and mobility.

The Olympus Digital SLR System will feature a durable, all-metal body made of a magnesium alloy, adding strength and durability without adding excessive weight. The system will target speeds comparable to a film SLR and shorten the time it takes to write to the memory card, focus, and shoot/capture.

Olympus Digital SLR System Prototypes To Be Exhibited

  • Camera body
  • Lenses
  • 300mm, f2.8 (600mm equivalent)
  • 14~54mm, f2.8~f3.5 zoom (28~108mm equivalent)
  • 50mm macro, f2.0 (100mm equivalent)
  • 50~200mm, f2.8~f3.5 zoom (100~400mm equivalent)
  • External flash unit
  • Power Battery Holder

The Olympus Digital SLR System will be officially unveiled at a major New York City press event on June 24, 2003, when complete product features and specs will be revealed. The Olympus Digital SLR System will then be introduced to the market at competitive prices in the late third or early fourth quarter of 2003.

About The Four Thirds System

The new Four Thirds System is an open standard for digital SLR cameras and intdrchangeable lens systems that utilize a 4/3-type image sensor. Adopted by a consortium of leading manufacturers including Olympus, Kodak and Fuji, the Four Thirds System is designed to achieve an optimal balance between image quality, camera size, and system expandability. The system maximizes the performance of image sensors and lenses, and establishes a common standard for lens mounts, allowing photographers greater flexibility with a choice of bodies and lenses from different manufacturers using the Four Thirds System.

See the original Olympus 4/3 System press release.

Return to
Breaking News page