Olympus E-330 SLR Review

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Olympus EVOLT E-330 Digital SLR

Viewfinder, Hyper LCD & Controls

The eye-level viewfinder is equipped with an EP-5 eyecup and shows 95% of the field of view and includes dioptric compensation (-3 / +1). This 18mm high-eyepoint viewfinder allows for easy composition, even when wearing eyeglasses.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR

On the right side is the eyepiece shutter lever, the LIVE VIEW mode selection button and the MONITOR button which controls the color LCD when used as the viewfinder.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR

Inside the viewfinder is a fixed, Mat Screen focusing screen with AF/Metering marks. Viewfinder information includes: AF frame, AF confirmation mark, Exposure mode, Exposure compensation value, AE lock, Metering mode, Shutter speed, Aperture value, White balance, Flash and Battery status.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR

Although the E-330 is an exceptionally light and compact camera, it is equipped with a large, 2.5-inch, variable-angle, LCD monitor. The monitor is a HyperCrystal LCD with 215,000 pixels, a wide viewing angle, and high contrast for superior visibility. An LCD backlight booster further improves visibility in daylight to assure even easier operation.

The viewing angle of HyperCrystal LCD monitor is 160-degree from left to right, up and down, while on existing LCD monitors on the contrast only offers approximately 70-degree angle of viewing. The HyperCrystal LCD's wide viewing angle and high contrast provides exquisite visibility. Clear and crisp image is rendered without any frustration.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLROlympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR
The Default (left) and Detailed control panel display

The E-330 lacks a data LCD, instead it offers this Super Control Panel displayed on the large color LCD. Most of the buttons on the back (see below) are used to quickly change important camera settings in conjunction with the Control Dial.

Control Panel info displayed: Flash mode, Flash compensation value indication, Metering mode, Focus mode, Record mode, Aperture value, Shutter speed, Battery check, Number of storable still pictures, Image quality adjustment, ISO, Color space, Mono tone, Hi/Lo Key, White balance, Remote control, Self-timer, Exposure level indicator, Exposure compensation indicator, AF frame, Number of storable sequential pictures, Exposure compensation value indication, Auto bracket, Noise reduction, Single-frame shooting/Sequential shooting, Color saturation compensation value indication, Sharpness compensation indication value, AE bracket, WB bracket.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR
You can also press the OK button and then use the arrow keys to select just about any item shown on the Control Panel and change it with the command dial.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR

Controls on the back: Top right is the Control Dial, in Playback it functions as the index and zoomed mode control. As mentioned above, the LIVE VIEW button selects Mode A or B when the LCD is used as the viewfinder. Next to that is the MONITOR button to turn the LCD on/off. The AEL is the auto exposure lock button. Just above the 4-way controller is the Drive Mode button. You navigate the menus using the 4-way buttons, in playback you use the 4-way buttons to select images. The OK button accepts menu selections, in playback it marks/unmarks images to be Protected. The "Up" button selects the desired White Balance setting, the "Down" button is used for changing ISO sensitivity, the "Left" button selects the Metering Mode and the "Right" button selects the Auto Focus Mode.

Button on the left of the LCD: The green arrow button puts the camera into Playback mode. The "trashcan" button is for deleting images. The MENU button calls up or dismisses the onscreen menu system. The INFO button calls up and dismisses the Control Panel screen in record mode, in Playback it functions as a Display button to select one of six screen modes (see playback features on page 6.)

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR

Direct Button operation enables users to get to the settings they want without wading through the menus or pushing arrow buttons excessively. The EV Compensation, ISO, Drive Mode, Metering Mode, AF Mode, AF Frame and White Balance settings can be set by pressing one of the camera's direct key buttons and turning the Control Dial. The changes are seen immediately on the Super Control Panel or the onscreen displays shown above.

Olympus Evolt E-330 Digital SLR

Controls on top of the grip include the Mode Dial with positions for: Manual, Shutter-speed priority, Aperture priority, Program AE, Portrait, Landscape, Macro, Sports, Night Scene and Scene Select (Portrait, Landscape, Landscape & Portrait, Night Scene, Night Scene & Portrait, Children, Sport, High Key, Low Key, Image Stabilization, Macro, Nature Macro, Candle, Sun Set, Fireworks, Documents, Panorama, Beach & Snow, Underwater Wide, Underwater Macro). The Power on/off switch is built around the Mode Dial. The unmarked dial below is the Control Dial. To the left is a blue LED labeled "SSWF" that blinks each time the camera is powered up - this indicates the SuperSonic Wave Filter is operating. Inbetween the Mode Dial and shutter release is the +/- Exposure Compensation button.

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