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Olympus mju 700 | Digital Camera Review | Control
The Olympus Mju 700 originated from the Mju concept, a digital version of the world's most successful analogue compact camera. Simplicity of operation and attention to design are the key words that characterise digital cameras from the Mju family. The Olympus 700 is clearly a camera for someone who cares about design and wants an easy, user-friendly camera. This little camera is fully automatic and is operated via a selection of pre-programmed modes. Much of the ease of using this camera is down to its software. Nowadays, software is an important feature which gives manufacturers the opportunity to distinguish themselves (at least for the time being).
Olympus mju 700 | Digital Camera Olympus mju 700 | Digital Camera
Olympus Mju 700 - Start up time
The Olympus Mju 700 takes approximately two seconds to start up, turn the camera on and position the optical zoom, which is an average speed. The start up time seems quick, but if you look at the competition, you will see that it is possible to start up in one second. Getting a subject in focus in normal daylight is nice and quick, with only an occasional mishap if the AF point falls just next to the subject. In dimmer light, I had some problems with focussing. Sometimes, there was irregular focus performance, something that in my opinion could have been prevented by equipping the Olympus Mju 700 with an AF illuminator. The camera's shutter lag is convenient and there was virtually no delay. I thought that the shutter release button was rather small, but you just have to get used to it.

Olympus Mju 700 - 2,5 inch LCD display
The Mju 700 has a large format 2.5 inch LCD display which has supplanted the optical viewfinder. This last feature was too small anyway and was more likely to irritate than help. Of course, bright sunlight will limit the screen's usefulness to a certain extent, but if you make a bit of effort you can still use the screen in these conditions. The screen performs remarkably well in dark conditions, and lives up to Olympus's claims about the screen's heightened clarity. The limited resolution of 115.000 pixels is somewhat disappointing and thanks to this, sharpness looks merely average. The display's size is fantastic if you want to look at pictures you have taken or to share them with other people.

Olympus Mju 700 camera - Guide mode
The mode dial on the rear of the camera has a mode called Guide. An advanced Help mode appears on the screen if this mode is activated. This function helps you by giving all sorts of handy tips and explanations and it can even change the modes for you. Via subjects, you can access tips that tell you which adjustments are important for achieving the best exposure for your chosen subject. Furthermore, the SCN function on the mode dial gives access to a selection of pre-programmed scenes. The scenes speak for themselves, just select a scene that matches the subject at hand or the light situation and the Olympus Mju 700 will then set the camera to give the optimal result.
Olympus Mju 700 - Image stabilisation
The concept of image stabilisation has definitely become integrated into digital compact cameras. You can still see clear differences between the various systems. I definitely prefer optical image stabilisation compared to the digital version. This last feature, found in the Olympus Mju 700 uses a simple system; it upgrades sensitivity and adjusts shutter speed so that this combination can prevent blur. All in all, the practise lives up to the theory but you have to be prepared to put up with the negative side effects of increasing sensitivity, i.e. noise.

Olympus Mju 700 - Auto or Program mode
The multicontrole button on the rear of the Olympus 700 functions in a familiar way; behind every button there is a function such as exposure compensation, self timer, macro or flash settings. These functions can be accessed directly and are very convenient. The middle button gives direct access to a number of important modes. These modes are shown on the screen, enabling users to choose whether to activate the camera in Auto or Program. In Program, you can adjust a number of settings such as white balance and ISO. In addition, the other settings give access to white balance, ISO, serial or single pictures and light metering.

Olympus Mju 700 digital camera - Menu
The menu of the Olympus Mju 700 is accessible and user friendly. The menu speaks for itself and you will probably not need the instruction manual to fathom out the camera. The inbuilt Help function is particularly useful. It is a pity that an extensive language package is not included as a standard feature so that beginners can simply select their own language. Languages not included in the menu must be downloaded from Internet with the Olympus Master software program that comes with the camera. The software automatically adds the language to the camera. It's a roundabout way of doing things, but at least there is a choice.
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