Digital SLR Camera Review
for an affordable digital SLR camera with great features under
$1000? Well, you’ll find it in the Olympus Evolt E300
digital SLR. This camera is a full featured SLR which produces
great photos and has excellent optics. While its images are
not as good compared to the likes of the Canon Digital Rebel,
it is still a great entry level digital SLR for those just
entering this market.
D 300 EVOLT
Design and Construction
Olympus Evolt E300 measures 5.7” by 3.4” by
2.5” (WHD). Its sturdy,
black body is designed to look more like an enthusiast camera
(like the Canon PowerShot G6) than a digital SLR. But make no
mistake – this camera is indeed a full-fledged digital
SLR. It weighs a bit lighter than its competitor, the Canon Digital
Rebel – tipping the scales at 26 ounces.
Optics and Resolution
The Olympus Evolt E300 features an excellent optical system.
It employs a built-in proprietary Porroflex optical viewing system.
This is in place of the traditional pentaprism setup found in
many digital SLRs. The CCD is a Kodak's Four Thirds CCD, which
gives a fantastic 8 megapixel resolution. Images can go up to
3,264 by 2,448 pixels at such a resolution.
built-in flash hot shoe allows you to connect an standard flash
to the Evolt 300. If you want to buy a flash for this
camera, I recommend the the Olympus FL-36 Electronic Flash unit,
It’s fully compatible with the Evolt 300 and is extremely
lightweight and portable.
found the user controls in the Olympus Evolt E300 to be very
and intuitive. The 1.8 inch LCD screen is bright and
clear, and gives access to its various menus. The menus themselves
are legible and logically clustered – making navigation
though controls and pictures a breeze. There is a full range
of manual controls here, including shutter priority, aperture
priority and full manual exposure. You can also set the exposure
and white-balance bracketing, among other features.
Storage and Transfer
In terms of memory cards, the Olympus Evolt E300 takes in CompactFlash
memory cards (both Type I and Type II).
Data transfer from the camera to the PC is via a USB 1.1 port.
I did find this to be a bit slow for the high resolution images
the camera takes.
The battery system in the Olympus Evolt E300 is a fully rechargeable
lithium-ion battery. The battery life is pretty good. I managed
to going through hundreds of photos before draining the battery.
There are some quirks about the Olympus Evolt E300 which any
potential buyer should take note of:The built-in pop-up flash is blocked partially if you perform
a full telephoto zoom. I found this to be a little irritating
when photographing distant subjects in low light.
The image quality from the camera is not as good as that from
competing digital SLRs like the Canon Digital Rebel and the Nikon
On the whole, the Olympus Evolt E300 is a very affordable digital
SLR with a sub $1000 price tag. You get lots of manual controls,
and wonderful features at a good price. While the image quality
is not completely up to par with its competitors, I think its
still a great introductory camera for those just beginning to
explore the world of digital SLRs.
Gary Hendricks www.basic-digital-photography.com