This weatherproof Olympus mju 1000 (Olympus Stylus 1000) boasts 10 million pixels and great specifications. Our Olympus mju 1000 review tests it's features...
The mju dynasty stretches back to the days of 35mm film, when Olympus first launched its weatherproof compact camera range. The ethos was a distinctive style and performance, which has extended into the digital realm.
The Olympus mju 1000 (Olympus Stylus 1000 in the US) has all the features the consumer could want, with automatic and program modes, plus 20 scene modes covering every occasion. It would have been nice to see aperture priority though, as control over the depth of field would elevate this 10MP newcomer to the ‘next level’. I’d also have preferred a more exotic zoom range, as a 35-105mm 3x zoom doesn’t stand out against rivals. There’s a choice of ESP and spot metering, digital image stabilisation and an incredibly far-reaching ISO 64-6400 sensitivity range, though ISO 3200-6400 can only be used with 3MP capture.
The metal body shell with weatherproof seals is ideal if you find yourself caught by a sudden shower, while the mju 1000’s wedge shape provides a slightly thicker right hand grip, with an easily operated thumbwheel. The graphic menu system is easy on the eye, too.
A couple of seconds is all it takes for the mju 1000 to ready itself, but the AF and image writing are both a little tardy, with a slight hesitation in getting a focus lock and a noticeable pause before the camera’s ready to take another shot.
At the back, the bright 2.5in LCD is a pleasure to use, with a wide viewing angle and 230,000 pixels offering excellent image playback. This is exactly as it should be, given there’s no optical Viewfinder.
There’s inconsistent auto white balance, occasionally wayward exposures, slight fringing and some noise. Even at ISO 64 there’s texture in skies when viewed at 100%. While this doesn’t translate to A4 prints, it worsens as you increase sensitivity. ISO 800-1600 should be used in ‘emergencies’ and ISO 3200-6400 is pointless. There’s good detail at lower ISO settings, though.
Value For Money
Great value – you get 10MP, a weatherproof metal body and a very useful 1Gb xD card as well.
While the price and specifications are definitely right, the mju 1000 is let down by iffy white balance and exposure, plus high noise levels throughout the ISO range.