Olympus Extends Stylus Series with the TOUGH TG-4 and 1s Digital Cameras
Composed of a rugged, all-weather compact camera along with a versatile, advanced retro-styled model, Olympus's newest updates to its Stylus series help to refine the handling and image quality of the company’s flagship point-and-shoots. Now featuring raw shooting abilities and the Live Composite mode, the TG-4 is the newest TOUGH camera designed to handle shooting wherever your adventures take you. On the other end of Olympus's lineup, the Stylus 1s features an updated step-zoom function, Small Target AF mode, and Time Lapse Movie recording to round out the OM-D-styled camera's handling and recording capabilities.
Stylus TOUGH TG-4 Digital Camera
Improving upon last year's TG-3, Olympus's newest TOUGH camera, the TG-4, sees the inclusion of raw shooting capabilities and the Live Composite mode in addition to its well-tested, durable design. Raw shooting affords you greater post-production control over your imagery, which is especially beneficial for images shot in trying conditions when you might not have the time to dial-in those perfect camera settings. For the instances when you do have more time to make the shot, the new Live Composite mode allows you to composite sequentially recorded shots into a single frame to avoid over-exposed elements, while still gaining the overall exposure needed for photographing in low lighting. This mode is especially useful when shooting things like star trails, fireworks, or other instances that require a long exposure, yet still contain bright elements.
These key enhancements are included alongside a group of proven technologies, such as the 16MP 1/2.3" BSI CMOS sensor and image processor, which strive to create imagery with a high degree of clarity under less-than-ideal lighting conditions. The sensor and processor also afford the ability to record full HD 1080p video. Further complementing the imaging abilities, the TG-4 retains the same 4x optical zoom lens as the TG-3, which provides a 25-100mm equivalent focal-length range, along with a maximum aperture setting of f/2 at the wide end.
Referring to its namesake, the TG-4 is, of course, best characterized by its “tough” robust physical construction, which enables it to be used up to 50' underwater and survive drops from up to 7' high, temperatures as low as 14°F, and withstand pressure up to 220 lbf. Additionally, the camera is also dust proof enough to survive a fierce wind storm or a casual day at the beach. Accentuating these adventurous specs are a host of other complementary assets, including dedicated underwater shooting modes, a dedicated underwater HDR setting, and four distinct macro modes that also let you home in on close-up subjects when out in the field.
Rounding out the feature set of the TG-4 is built-in Wi-Fi connectivity, for sharing imagery wirelessly or controlling the camera remotely from your mobile device, as well as an integrated GPS module and eCompass.
Stylus 1s Digital Camera
In contrast to the TG-4, the new Stylus 1s features a sleeker, more aesthetically refined body reminiscent of the OM-D-series of mirrorless cameras. It succeeds the Stylus 1, and is characterized by a number of under-the-hood improvements for enhanced handling and control when shooting. Chief among these updates is a new step-zoom function, which translates the 10.7x, 28-300mm equivalent zoom range into common 35mm equivalent focal lengths, rather than magnifications, for more intuitive switching between zoom positions. Additionally, further complementing working with the i.ZUIKO lens, with a constant f/2.8 maximum aperture and ZERO coating, is a Small Target AF mode that allows you to frame smaller subjects with greater accuracy, especially when working with distant subjects. Manual-focus shooters are also benefitted by the inclusion of updated focus peaking control. A new Time Lapse Movie mode is also featured in this updated release, which automatically composites sequentially recorded stills into a movie file for seamless playback.
These updates come in alongside an already tested set of specs from the original Stylus 1, including a 12MP 1/1.7" BSI CMOS sensor that avails raw file recording, continuous shooting up to 7 fps, and full HD 1080p/30 video recording. The BSI sensor design works in tandem with the top ISO 12800 sensitivity, fast f/2.8 aperture, and iHS technology to achieve notable clarity and detail when working in difficult lighting conditions. Further benefitting working in dim lighting or with slower shutter speeds is lens-based multi-motion image stabilization that helps to reduce the appearance of camera shake for sharper handheld shooting.
Among the most distinct traits of the Stylus 1s relate to its physical design, which more closely resembles the E-M1, E-M5, and E-M10 from Olympus's lineup of cameras than other Stylus point-and-shoots. A large electronic viewfinder, featuring 1.44m-dot resolution, lends a natural viewing means for working in bright conditions, and for working from high and low shooting angles, the 3.0" 1.04m-dot tilting touchscreen LCD is also available and permits touch AF and touch shutter-release controls. Surrounding the lens is a hybrid control ring and zoom lever that offer quick control over focus, zoom, or exposure settings, and the new 1s body is finished with a pebbled leatherette covering for an appearance that is both stylish and functional. Additionally, even the included lens cap sports a unique auto-opening design to avoid having to remove the cap prior to shooting.
Finally, as with the TG-4, the Stylus 1s also incorporates built-in Wi-Fi connectivity that pairs with the free OI.Share app for wireless image sharing and remote camera control from your mobile device.