Steve's Digicams - Breaking News - Olympus 11/29/04 Press Release


Press Release - November 29, 2004

Olympus Introduces Next Generation Stylus Digital Camera: The Stylus 500

Large 2.5-Inch LCD, 5-Megapixel CCD, and All-Weather Design Combines with New Advanced Features and Functions

Olympus Stylus Digital 500

Melville, New York, November 29, 2004 – Olympus is proud to announce the next generation in its best-selling Stylus series of premium point-and-shoot digital cameras: the Stylus 500. Featuring an impressive 2.5-inch HyperCrystal™ LCD that is as bright as it is big, 5.0-megapixels of image resolution, and a compact, durable, all-weather body, the Stylus 500 demonstrates that power and elegance can co-exist in a stylish package that delivers brilliant images.

"At Olympus we believe that great design is fundamental to the functionality of our cameras," said Tomoko Matsunaga, product manager, Olympus Imaging America Inc. "When you merge superior performance with exceptional style, the result is an elegant looking camera that performs at the top of its class. With the introduction of the Stylus 500, Olympus has added advanced features and power to the lineup, such as a large, high quality LCD, 23 shooting modes and Album functionality."

Designed to Do More

Olympus Stylus Digital 500

The bright, clear 2.5-inch HyperCrystal™ LCD with 215,000 pixels of high resolution puts the Stylus 500 in a class of its own. Because it is a HyperCrystal™ LCD, it delivers a high contrast image and 160° wide-view radius. So gather your friends around – your photos are viewable from above, from the side, and from below. And while conventional LCD screens appear dim against bright light, the HyperCrystal™ LCD provides excellent visibility in any light condition – on the beach or on the slopes.

The Stylus 500 Digital combines a 5.0-megapixel CCD sensor with Olympus’ exclusive image processor, TruePic TURBO™, which significantly enhances image quality and delivers faster overall processing speeds for rapid startup, shutter release and playback. TruePic TURBO allows the Stylus 500 to capture information from all 5.0 million pixels with pixel "micro-smoothing" that delivers clearer and more color-accurate photos, even at lower resolutions. The result is high quality prints that can be cropped and printed to 11 x 14 inches and larger. The fast startup of less than one second and nearly instant shutter release time ensures high-speed response so you are always ready to take great pictures.

The compact, all-weather Stylus 500 can go virtually anywhere you can. The body is constructed of durable, lightweight metal with rubber gaskets throughout the interior to ensure that rain, sleet, snow or sand won’t get in the way of great photos.

Delivering Style

The Stylus 500 represents the next generation of the Stylus line. In addition to the durable, all-weather construction that made the Stylus famous, the Stylus 500 boasts a new flat-surface body design that takes the series in a new direction.

The look of the Stylus 500 is all about clean lines. Smooth, rounded edges make the camera comfortable to hold and easy to handle, and at a compact size of 3.9" (W) x 2.2" (H) x 1.2" (D), it fits snugly into a pocket and will not crowd a backpack. The circular lens barrier tucks away inside the camera body with a snap when powered on, and protects the lens with an impenetrable seal when closed, leaving the camera face smooth and flat. The back of the camera features a simple, functional design that emphasizes the large 2.5-inch LCD.

Designed for Excitement

The Stylus 500 offers advanced features with point-and-shoot simplicity for taking flawless pictures. Designed to perform during a variety of occasions, 23 easy-to-use shooting modes can be accessed through the camera’s menu, providing fully automatic exposure adjustments for shooting Portraits, Landscapes, Fireworks, and more. The camera’s shooting modes now include two new underwater shooting modes and two Shoot & Select modes, which enable users to shoot rapid sequences of frames then select the best shot from the series and delete the rest.

The Stylus 500 will change the way you view your digital camera. Now instead of simply capturing images with the Stylus 500, you can think of it as a "Portable Photo Album" that goes wherever you go. With a new Album Function, photos can be easily organized into photo albums stored on the camera’s xD-Picture CardTM. Create up to 12 individual albums of 100 images each, in the order you want to show them, and take your photos everywhere – your photo album will no longer be confined to your coffee table.

Intelligent Design

Olympus photos are known worldwide for sharp, vibrant image quality. This is achieved through a number of key technologies, such as Olympus’ high-quality all-glass lens (with aspherical lens elements), designed specifically for digital cameras. The lens provides the equivalent of 35 to 105mm, f3.1 – f5.2 in 35mm photography, with 12x combined total zoom (3x optical and 4x digital) to bring the action closer, and a Super Macro Mode that captures details as small as the wings of a butterfly.

The Stylus 500 also features an all-weather speaker and microphone, enabling users to narrate images with personalized audio captions. With its QuickTime® Movie Mode, the Stylus 500 can record movies of any length, limited only by the size of the memory card in the camera.

Designed to be Approachable

Connecting the Stylus 500 to a computer is easy with the USB Auto Connect feature, which connects directly via USB 2.0 cable and requires no software. Or, If you prefer, forget the computer altogether. The power of PictBridge technology enables photos to be printed directly from the Stylus 500 to any PictBridge-enabled printer, such as the Olympus P-10 Digital Photo Printer, without using a computer. Printing and sharing images has never been easier, and the P-10’s photo lab-quality dye-sublimation printing produces archival-quality prints in rich color.

OLYMPUS Master™ software provides the ultimate in digital imaging management. An intuitive user interface makes downloading to your computer quick and simple, and images are searchable by date or keyword in the Calendar View. And with one-click editing tools, such as red-eye reduction, images can be touched up before printing or emailing. Online support, templates, firmware upgrades and other user services are just a mouse-click away.


The Stylus 500 will be available in January 2005. It includes: 32MB xD-Picture Card, Wrist Strap, Camera WIN/Mac USB Cable, Audio/Video cable, Li-12B Li-Ion Rechargeable Battery and Charger, Quick Start Guide, Basic Instruction Manual, Warranty Card, CD-ROM with OLYMPUS Master Software, and Camera reference manual.

U.S. Pricing

Stylus 500 Estimated Street Price: .99 (U.S.)


Olympus is a precision technology leader, designing and delivering innovative solutions in healthcare and consumer electronics worldwide.

Olympus works collaboratively with its customers and its parent company, Tokyo-based Olympus Corporation, to leverage R&D investment in precision technology and manufacturing processes across diverse business lines. These include:

  • Gastrointestinal endoscopes, accessories, and minimally invasive surgical products;

  • Advanced clinical and research microscopes;

  • Lab automation systems, chemistry-immuno and blood bank analyzers and reagents; and

  • Digital and film cameras, and digital voice recorders.

In the U. S. and Canada, Olympus serves healthcare, scientific and commercial laboratory markets with integrated product solutions and financial, educational and consulting services that help customers efficiently, reliably, safely, and easily achieve superior results. Olympus is the leader in gastrointestinal endoscopy and clinical and educational microscopes. The company's market-leading consumer electronics business spans North and South America. For more information, visit

Stylus 500 Specifications

CCD Imager5.0 megapixel effective, 5.4 megapixel gross, 1/2.5" (1.0cm) CCD
Lens5.8 –17.4mm (35 – 105mm equivalent in 35mm photography), 5 lenses in 3 group, 3 aspherical lens
Seamless Digital ZoomSeamless to 12x (3x optical and 4x digital combined)
Aperture Rangef3.1/5.2 (not adjustable)
Shutter Speeds1/1000 sec. – 1/2 sec. (up to 4 sec. in Night Scene)
ISOAuto, 64, 100, 200, 250, and 400 (equivalent) (Indoor; ISO500)
Recording Mode(s)DCF Exif2.2, JPEG, PIM 2.5 compatible
Adjustable Resolutions2560 x 1920 (SHQ)
2560 x 1920 (HQ)
2048 x 1536 (SQ1)
1600 x 1200 (SQ2)
1280 x 960 (SQ2)
1024 x 768 (SQ2)
640 x 480 (SQ2)
DPOF (Digital Print Order Format)Yes
Image Adjustment ModesN/A
Image EffectsStill image: Black and White, Sepia, Resize, Trimming, Rotation, Soft focus, Fish eye
Movie: Frame Index
PanoramaUp to 10 frames automatically stitchable with Olympus Master software when using Olympus brand xD-Picture Card
Sequence1.5 frames per second (in SHQ mode, up to 5 frames)
LCD2.5" (6.35cm) HyperCrystal LCD, approx. 215,000 pixel
Focusing SystemCDD Contrast
Focusing RangesNormal mode: 19.7" – infinity (0.5m – infinity)
Macro mode: 7.9" – infinity (0.2m – infinity)
Super Macro Mode: 2.8" (7cm; 2.7cm x 2.0cm)
Exposure Control±2 EV steps in 1/3 EV steps
Metering SystemDigital ESP multi-pattern, Spot metering
White Balance SystemiESP multi-pattern auto TTL, Pre-set Manual (Daylight, Overcast, Tungsten, and Fluorescent1, Fluorescent2, Fluorescent3)
Flash ModesAuto (for low light and backlit conditions)
Red-eye Reduction
Flash Working RangeWide: 11.8ft (3.6m), Tele: 6.6ft. (2.0m)
Removable Media CardxD-Picture Card (16, 32, 64, 128, 256 or 512MB)
Selftimer/Remote12 seconds/2 seconds by Remote Control
Setting MemorizationOn/Off (Hold changes/Reset to default settings)
Outer ConnectorsUSB Connecter & Audio/Video multi-terminal, DC input
Auto-connect USB2.0 Full Speed
Image PlaybackStill image: Index display (4/9/16/25), Up to 8x enlargement, Slide Show, Rotation, Calendar, Album, Histogram
Movie: Normal, Reverse, Frame-by-frame
Operating EnvironmentOperation: 32° – 104°F (0° – 40°C), 30 – 90% humidity
Storage: -4° – 140°F (-20° – 60°C), 10 – 90% humidity
Power SupplyLi-Ion Rechargeable Battery (LI-12B), AC Adapter
Date/Time CalendarSimultaneous recording into image data, Automatic up to 2099
CalendarAutomatic up to 2099
Size3.9" W x 2.2" H x 1.2" D (99mm x 55.5mm x 31mm)
Weight5.8 oz. (165g) without battery and media card
Number of Storable Photos
 Quality ModeResolution32MB xD-Picture Card (included)512MB xD-Picture Card
Still image
(w/o sound)
Unit: shots
SHQ2560 x 19208 shots142 shots
HQ2560 x 192026 shots420 shots
SQ12048 x 153640 shots652 shots
SQ21600 x 1200
1280 x 960
1024 x 768
640 x 480
48 shots
76 shots
117 shots
180 shots
779 shots
1229 shots
1879 shots
2904 shots
Still image
Unit: shots
SHQ2560 x 19208 shots141 shots
HQ2560 x 192025 shots409 shots
SQ12048 x 153639 shots626 shots
SQ21600 x 1200
1280 x 960
1024 x 768
640 x 480
46 shots
71 shots
104 shots
153 shots
743 shots
1141 shots
1681 shots
2458 shots
Unit: min.
HQ320 x 240approx. 83 sec.approx. 1334 sec.
SQ160 x 120approx. 211 sec.approx. 3395 sec.
All capacity figures are approximate.

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