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Olympus SP-560UZ 8MP Digital Camera with Dual Image Stabilized 18x Optical Zoom
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- 8.0-megapixel CCD captures enough detail for photo-quality 16 x 22-inch prints
- 18x super telephoto zoom; Dual Image Stabilization
- 2.5-inch LCD; Bright Capture technology for low-light photos
- High-speed sequential shooting (up to 15fps) and Pre-Capture
- Captures images to xD memory card (not included)
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|Auto Focus Technology|
|Continuous Shooting Speed||15 fps|
|Display Resolution Maximum||230,000|
|Display Size||2.5 inches|
|Expanded ISO Maximum||3,200|
|Expanded ISO Minimum||100|
|External Memory Included||Yes|
|Flash Memory Type||xD Picture Card, Internal|
|Flash Type||Built-in Flash|
|Focus Type||Autofocus & Manual|
|ISO Range||Auto, 50 - 3200, 6400 in reduced pixel mode|
|Image Aspect Ratio||4:3, 16:9|
|Included Components||Olympus SP-560 UZ digital camera - (4) AA|
|Item Dimensions||3.11 x 3.07 x 4.57 inches|
|Item Weight||0.8 pounds|
|Lithium Battery Weight||4 ounces|
|Macro Focus Range||1 cm|
|Manufacturer Warranty Description||1 Year Parts and Labor|
|Maximum Aperture Range||F2.8 - F4.5|
|Maximum Focal Length||486 mm|
|Maximum Shutter Speed||1/2000 of a second|
|Maximum horizontal resolution||3,264|
|Minimum Focal Length||27 mm|
|Minimum Shutter Speed||4 seconds|
|Optical Sensor Resolution||8 MP|
|Optical Sensor Technology||CCD|
|Photo Sensor Technology||CCD|
|Sensor Cleaning Method||No|
|Shipping Weight||2.3 pounds|
|Supported Battery Types||AA (4) batteries (NiMH recommended)|
|Video Capture Resolution||640 x 480 @ 30 fps, 320 x 240 @ 30 fps|
The SP-560UZ features the world's most powerful zoom lens, offering maximum shooting versatility for travel, sports and everyday use. The 18x super telephoto zoom (27 - 486mm equivalent) gets you closer to the action than any compact digital camera on the market. The 2-in-1 blur solution Sensor-Shift Image Stabilization keeps your shot steady by compensating for camera shake and freezes the action with high ISO sensitivity along with faster shutter speeds. Record TV-quality AVI movies close up with sound 640x480 at 30 fps up to the capacity of your xD card.
From the Manufacturer
The SP-560 UZ features the world's most powerful zoom lens, offering maximum shooting versatility for travel, sports and everyday use. The 18x super telephoto zoom (27 - 486mm equivalent) gets you closer to the action than any compact digital camera on the market. The 2-in-1 blur solution Sensor-Shift Image Stabilization keeps your shot steady by compensating for camera shake and freezes the action with high ISO sensitivity along with faster shutter speeds. Record TV-quality AVI movies close up with sound 640x480 at 30 fps up to the capacity of your xD card.SP-560 UZ Highlights Amazing focal length far and wide The key component to quality imaging is precision optics, and the SP-560 UZ delivers. This cameras versatile yet compact 18x super telephoto zoom gets users close to the action. At the same time, the wide-angle (27mm) lens captures more in each frame. Its super-macro capabilities capture the subtlest details from as close as one centimeter. The compact lens construction combines high-refractive, aspherical and extra-dispersion (ED) lens elements to deliver edge-to-edge sharpness and clarity. The bright, F2.8-4.5 lens provides the equivalent of 27-486mm focal length with 100x total seamless zoom (5.6x digital zoom). Face Detection Technology Face Detection Technology tracks faces within the frame and automatically focuses (Face Detection AF) and optimizes exposure (Face Detection AE) for sharp, brilliant portrait pictures. Shadow Adjustment Technology Shooting outdoors in bright daylight can be tricky because of the extreme contrast between dark shadowed areas and bright sunlit areas -- while the human eye is capable of detecting the nuances between dark and light and all the details in between, image sensors traditionally have not been quite as sensitive. The SP-560 UZ addresses this challenge head-on with Shadow Adjustment Technology, which compensates for extreme contrast where the shadow areas are underexposed and lack visible detail. With this technology, users can preview and capture images with the same contrast as their naked eye. TruePic III image processor Olympus enhanced TruePic III image processor produces crystal clear photos using all the pixel information for each image to deliver superior picture quality with more accurate colors, true-to-life flesh tones and faster processing speeds. TruePic III also captures sharp images at high ISO settings, which are traditionally associated with increasing image noise or producing grainy photos. Perfect Shot Preview mode The SP-560 UZ features a Perfect Shot Preview mode that enables users to preview and select various photographic effects on a live, multi-frame window on the LCD before snapping the shot. This feature allows users to see precisely what the image will look like when adjustments are made, ensuring users are capturing the exact image they want. Its a great way for novice users to learn about the effects of different photography techniques, such as exposure compensation, white balance and metering. Dual Image Stabilization Dual Image Stabilization technology enables users to take crisp, clear pictures in virtually any shooting situation -- adjusting for camera shake and a moving subject. Olympus mechanical Sensor-Shift Image Stabilization keeps images sharp by adjusting the CCD to compensate for camera shake, which often occurs when zooming in on your subject and in low-light conditions when shutter speeds are slower. Digital Image Stabilization freezes the action with high ISO sensitivity and fast shutter speeds that prevent blur caused by a moving subject. In-camera panorama The SP-560 UZ features a new in-camera panoramic photo shooting capability, which captures three images and stitches them together to create one amazing panoramic picture. Users can easily do this by pressing the shutter button and slowly panning across a panoramic scene. The second and third images will be automatically captured and stitched together with the first image -- resulting in one panoramic-size picture. To create the ultimate panoramic picture, consumers can use the Olympus Master Software 2 to stitch up to 10 images together to produce an even larger panoramic image. High-speed sequential shooting and Pre-Capture technology Capable of capturing images at an incredible 15 frames per second (image size reduced), the SP-560 UZ offers the highest burst rate of any compact digital camera. The inclusion of Pre-Capture technology, which works in conjunction with High-Speed Sequential Shooting, enables users to capture the action before and after fully pressing the shutter button. Pre-Capture begins working as soon as the focus is locked, automatically archiving five frames in the cameras buffer memory prior to the shutter release -- virtually guaranteeing that none of the action will be missed even if the users reaction time is slow. Perfect for situations where timing is essential, such as photographing a tennis player serving, children playing or a whale breaching. High-resolution 2.5-inch LCD and electronic viewfinder Compose and display incredible images on the cameras bright 230,000-pixel LCD. The high-resolution screen enables you to review pictures, scroll through menu options and treat friends and family to a digital slide show with ease. The SP-560 UZ also features an electronic viewfinder with dioptric correction. 33 Shooting modes including TV-quality video with sound The SP-560 UZ makes it easy to take great photos in a variety of scenarios and lighting situations with 33 shooting modes, including TV-quality video with sound (640x480/30fps). Simply select the desired mode for portraits, landscapes, night scenes, fast-action, macro and more. Bright Capture Technology for easy low-light photography Low-light photography has never been easier thanks to Olympus revolutionary Bright Capture Technology. A brightened preview on the LCD enables simple composition; and with specific scene modes for high sensitivity settings (up to ISO 3200) and rapid auto-focus, even fast-action photos can be captured under low levels of available light. Bright Capture Technology in Action Full manual and automatic control The Manual, Aperture Priority and Shutter Priority modes give users versatility and control for optimal performance in any situation. Users can express their creative vision -- adjusting the f-stop for detailed portraits with softened backgrounds, or slowing the exposure speed to create the blurred effect of motion, or just sit back and let the camera do the thinking through the use of the automatic settings. Olympus Master 2 software Olympus Master 2 software provides the ultimate in digital imaging management. An intuitive user interface makes downloading to your computer quick and simple, and images are easily organized by folders or albums and searchable by date in Calendar view. Also, with one-click editing tools, such as red-eye removal, images can be touched up before printing or e-mailing. Online support, templates, firmware upgrades and other user services are just a mouse-click away. Use the optional muvee Theater Pack to create professional quality slide shows and DVDs from your pictures using any of several built-in templates.
Read about our customers' top-rated cameras on our review page: Point-and-Shoot Cameras
Top customer reviews
All this technology comes at a price though and it is not in the price tag you take the hit, but in the fuction. If you are looking for a point and shot camera for quick shots of the family or friends you are barking up the wrong tree! There is a LONG delay for the auto range,focus and other features that make this camera so special to work so stop action - spur of the moment shots are not going to happen in full auto. In manual focus the time from off to open shutter cycle and completed photo is impressively fast, but you have to know how to change from full auto and be competent at range focusing. This is a trade off for the full auto - do everything modes. There are faster stop action modes, but again there is a trade off of time for auto focus, as this setting is about shuitter speed. The the burst quality is quite degraded to the point that a print of any size better than a standard snap shot may be hard.
I am not trying to spoil a great camera for anyone, but this is a camera that by definition and fuction is designed for someone who wants manual modes available to them and plans to use manual modes frequently. It's placement in the point and shoot catagory is unfortunate because for many laymen - it will be frustrating rather than rewarding. If you find a regular point and shot digial technically frustrating and want to take only snap shots, let me say it again, this is not a camera for you - there a number of better choices for less money. Like all optical zoom of any length a tripod is required in spite of image stabalization. Also video mode will work best with an H card rather than just the regular XD
For those of you who seek SLR-type manual controls with great optics and a superb auto mode then this camera is nearly impossible to beat.
Biggest improvement over the Olypmus SP-550UZ is the high spead USB cable. Downloads are lightning fast! Frankly I can't really tell the difference in my type of shooting in the .9 extra megspixal upgrade from the 550
A fantastic camera for under 375 dollars purchased through Amazon - who by the way increases the price of this camera during the daytime hours to over 400 and reduces it at night/early am hours - go figure when you want to buy. - Added on 11/8/07: Now that this is not a brand new, just released camera, the price is coming down. Nevertheless I would check at different times to see if you find a better price here at Amazon. It does continue to change.
I got up this morning at about 4:00 AM thinking about the disastrous shoot I'd had at a party the other night with my new Olympus SP 560, the camera that was supposed to the the PARTY CAMERA OF MY DREAMS! On at least two occasions, the results were just awful, and I couldn't believe that Olympus had put out such a lousy box. After thinking it over and over I came to this mind-boggling possibility: could it have been (gulp, gasp) ME??? So I got out of bed and proceeded to do a series of low light experimental shots in the house. What I did was to (first) set the camera on spot-metering and then on center-weighted metering and proceed to take a series of side-by-side shots of first ISO AUTO and then the identical shot at HIGH ISO AUTO.
When they say you must get to know this camera, they aren't kidding. For such a little squirt, the SP 560 has a lot of things in it that can not only enhance your picture-taking, but can throw you off as well.
Bottom line: to avoid chaos in trying to take good pictures in low light situations, MAKE SURE that you NEVER use the ESP meter setting! If you have inadvertently chosen this setting, the camera decides that it knows more than you do about what you're trying to focus on and MAKES THE DECISION FOR YOU. If you're trying to focus on one thing and the camera decides to focus on something else, you're going to pull your hair out.
SO -- when you first turn on the camera make this your standard routine: (1) choose your shooting mode (I prefer the P mode for instance), and (2) THEN PRESS THE OK/FUNC BUTTON TO CHECK THE CAMERA'S SETTINGS. This brings up a toolbar along the bottom of the screen, and a stack of settings icons in the lower left-hand margin of the screen. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE FOLLOWING SETTINGS (listed from top to bottom) when intending to shoot in low light situations with the camera on auto settings:
ISO AUTO (or ISO HIGH AUTO)
SINGLE FRAME (a picture of a rectangle)
CENTER-WEIGHTED METERING (a rectangle with a white dot) or SPOT METERING (a rectangle with a black dot).
If you have the metering setting at ESP, CHANGE IT TO ONE OF THE OTHERS, or you'll get a massive headach as well as terminal heartburn trying to get the camera to focus on what YOU want it to. I can't emphasize this enough: the ESP setting is the SETTING FROM HELL, if you don't realize you've chosen it!
The other thing is the AF assist lamp:
In dim light situations, the AF lamp is blind to things with horizontal line patterns, and may hunt and hunt and not focus. TURN THE CAMERA to somewhere between 45 degrees and vertical to remedy this. In this turned position, get the focus locked, then position the camera for the shot and proceed accordingly.
In addition, if you are focusing on something so dark that not enough light is thrown back to the camera, it will not lock. Same thing if you're so far away from the subject that the light is too dim for the focus to lock. So beware of all these things and compensate accordingly.
I put the shots into Adobe Bridge to see what the camera was doing settingwise.
In ISO AUTO, it was choosing no higher than ISO 400. That meant a slow shutter speed. That meant holding my breath with my body locked while bracing the camera against my nose while the camera took the shot with a 1/2-second exposure. In HIGH ISO AUTO, it was choosing no higher than ISO 800. This got me a much better shutter speed (around 1/25-second) and a somewhat brighter picture, that was somewhat more noisy, but still acceptable for a VERY DIMLY-LIT shooting situation. It still means some Photoshop surgery, but not totally useless pictures!
The bottom line: MAKE SURE you don't use that ESP metering setting; it's a disaster -- at least in dim light. Since the camera doesn't go beyond ISO 800 on its own, you probably shouldn't do it on your own either. Those higher settings -- and I once did an entire dim-light shoot on ISO 3200 -- are worse than useless -- your entire effort is trashed.
I now upgrade my camera review from two to four stars. A very good camera IF you know what settings to choose and what settings to avoid. (Why not 5 stars? Because I had to go to so much trouble!)
Most recent customer reviews
My Olympus 560 replaces an old 10x Olympus c 740.
I love the extra 8x of zoom.Read more
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