Pre-CES: Olympus has unveiled the SZ-12, a 24x compact superzoom camera. The camera is based around an image-stabilized 14MP sensor and adds a 25-600mm equivalent zoom lens. Like the other releases it includes the company's Magic Art Filters, but it also features a well-specified 460k dot 3.0" LCD. The SZ-12 will sell for around $199 from March 2012.

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Press Release:

TRACK YOUR SUBJECTS NEAR OR FAR WITH NEW ULTRA-SLEEK OLYMPUS SZ-12 LONG ZOOM CAMERA

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., January 9, 2012 – Olympus today unveils the full-featured, slim and sleek SZ-12, a compact superzoom camera with a powerful 24x optical wide-angle zoom lens (25-600mm equivalent*) and two forms of image stabilization to help deliver the clearest results possible. Whether you’re traveling, at a family function, or on the sideline of a sporting event, the new, powerful SZ-12 gives you the flexibility to zoom right in and shoot brilliant close-ups without sacrificing versatility and image quality.

With remarkable magnification power in combination with 14-megapixel resolution, the super-slim SZ-12 is packed with state-of-the-art Olympus technology that delivers excellent image quality. A new, retro-chic “smart grip” at the front of the camera combined with built-in Dual Image Stabilization, helps cut out blur caused by imperceptible camera shake, allowing you to zoom right in for expressive close-ups and vivid HD 720p video.

High-speed, seven-frames-per-second (7 fps) sequential shooting gives you the power to capture a dynamic series of images of fast-moving subjects. For more composed shooting, the Olympus SZ-12’s Telephoto Macro captures all the rich detail of small subjects like flowers from inches away. The powerful zoom brings you up close to whimsical subjects like butterflies from a safe distance, so you don’t scare them.

Ten Magic Art Filters power your creativity by adding a whole range of special effects to your images directly in the camera. The Olympus SZ-12 offers the new Reflection magic filter takes the image and duplicates it across a horizontal or vertical plane of symmetry creating powerful illusions.

Easily frame and review your images on the large, 3-inch LCD display (460,000 dots) and share them wirelessly throughout your social networks or on your computer via an optional Eye-Fi Card – or in all the glory of High-Definition using an optional HDMI cable on a big-screen HDTV.

* 35mm camera equivalent

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Olympus SZ-12 will be available in March and ships with a Camera Strap, USB Cable, USB-AC Adapter (F-2AC), Lithium-Ion Battery (LI-50B), Audio/Video Cable, Quick Start Guide, Instruction Manual and OLYMPUS [ib] Software CD-ROM and a Warranty card.

Estimated Street Price: $199.99 (Available in silver, black and red)

For a complete list of specifications, visit the Olympus website: www.getolympus.com.

Olympus SZ-12 specifications

Body type
Body typeCompact
Sensor
Max resolution4288 x 3216
Other resolutions4288 x 2416, 3264 x 2448, 2560 x 1920, 2048 x 1536, 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 640 x 480
Effective pixels14 megapixels
Sensor photo detectors15 megapixels
Sensor size1/2.3" (6.17 x 4.55 mm)
Sensor typeCCD
Image
ISOAuto, High Auto, 80, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600
White balance presets5
Custom white balanceNo
Image stabilizationSensor-shift
Uncompressed formatNo
File format
  • JPEG 2.21
Optics & Focus
Focal length (equiv.)25–600 mm
Optical zoom24×
Maximum apertureF3.0 - F6.9
Autofocus
  • Contrast Detect (sensor)
  • Multi-area
  • Tracking
  • Single
  • Face Detection
Digital zoomYes (4x)
Manual focusNo
Screen / viewfinder
Articulated LCDFixed
Screen size3
Screen dots460,000
Touch screenNo
Screen typeTFT Color LCD
Live viewYes
Viewfinder typeNone
Photography features
Minimum shutter speed4 sec
Maximum shutter speed1/1700 sec
Exposure modes
  • Program AE
Scene modes
  • Portrait
  • Beauty
  • Landscape
  • Night Scene
  • Night + Portrait
  • Sport
  • Indoor
  • Candle
  • Self Portrait
  • Sunset
  • Fireworks
  • Cuisine
  • Documents
  • Beach & Snow
  • Pet (Cat)
  • Pet (Dog)
Built-in flashYes
External flashNo
Flash modesAuto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Fill-in
Drive modes
  • Single
  • Continuous
  • Self-timer
Continuous drive1 fps
Self-timerYes (2 or 12 sec, pet auto shutter)
Metering modes
  • Multi
  • Spot
Exposure compensation±2 (at 1/3 EV steps)
WB BracketingNo
Videography features
Resolutions1280 x 720 (30 fps), 640 x 480 (30 fps), 320 x 180 (30fps)
FormatMPEG-4, H.264
MicrophoneMono
SpeakerMono
Storage
Storage typesSD/SDHC/SDXC
Connectivity
USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
HDMIYes (Type D)
Remote controlNo
Physical
Environmentally sealedNo
BatteryBattery Pack
Battery descriptionLithium-ion rechargeable LI-50B battery & charger
Battery Life (CIPA)220
Weight (inc. batteries)226 g (0.50 lb / 7.97 oz)
Dimensions106 x 69 x 40 mm (4.17 x 2.72 x 1.57)
Other features
Orientation sensorYes
Timelapse recordingNo
GPSNone