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Olympus releases Stylus SZ-16 and SZ-15 compact superzooms

By dpreview staff on Jan 8, 2013 at 03:00 GMT

Olympus has announced the Stylus SZ-16 iHS and the Stylus SZ-15 - a pair of 24x compact superzoom cameras. Both cameras offer an 25-600mm equivalent zoom range. The SZ-16 iHS is based around a 16MP CMOS sensor, allowing it to offer 1080p video and the other high-speed features needed to wear the company's iHS branding. The SZ-15 makes do with a 16MP CCD sensor, restricting it to 720p video capture. The SZ-16 iHS uses Olympus' previous-generation TruePic V processor, while the SZ-15 uses an older TruePic III+ chip.

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Press Release:

OLYMPUS EXTENDS LONG ZOOM CAMERA LINE WITH NEW STYLUS SZ-16 iHS® AND STYLUS SZ-15

CENTER VALLEY, Pa., January 7, 2013 – Olympus today unveils two powerful, yet incredibly compact long zoom cameras, the STYLUS SZ-16 iHS and STYLUS SZ-15, both equipped with a 24x optical wide-angle zoom lens (25-600mm equivalent*), for adventurers looking for a lightweight, easy-to-carry companion ready to capture stunning panoramas or brilliant close-ups of their travels. The STYLUS SZ-16 iHS provides a level of imaging performance that feels like a DSLR, while the STYLUS SZ-15 has many of the same traits at an even more affordable price.

Both long zooms have similar features, but the STYLUS SZ-16 iHS is optimized for moviemaking with 1080p Full HD video and Multi-Motion Movie Image Stabilization to record virtually blur-free videos even when the camera is moving. Its 16-megapixel CMOS sensor combined with the TruePic™ VI image processor, first developed for the Olympus PEN®, captures beautiful, sharp images of subjects even in challenging low-light situations and backlit scenes.

Olympus’ iHS (Intelligent, High-Sensitivity and High-Speed) Technology powers a number of features on the STYLUS SZ-16 iHS including Hand-Held Starlight mode which helps users at night, where image blur is more likely to occur, by capturing multiple images and stitching them together into a single, crisp, breathtaking photo without the use of a tripod. The STYLUS SZ-16 iHS’s blazing fast autofocus and HDR Backlight Adjustment combine to take a collage of images at various exposure levels and blend them into one perfectly exposed photo regardless of difficult lighting.

Built-in Dual Image Stabilization on both models, combined with ergonomically designed grips, allow for firm and comfortable support to help cut out blur caused by camera shake. These features are particularly useful for getting up close with a Super-Resolution Zoom of up to 48x zoom magnification at full resolution, capturing a series of images of a fast-moving subject with high-speed sequential shooting, or in Telephoto Macro mode when users are shooting the rich detail of small subjects like insects from inches away. Beyond their zoom power, the cameras’ impressive 25mm wide-angle lens takes in sweeping vistas, group shots and up-close macro images.

Both cameras are also equipped with eleven Magic Filters that add a range of spectacular effects to all of life’s adventures, both with stills and in video mode. Additional features include Beauty Make-up mode, which allows users to easily apply everything from eyeliner to eye shadow and blush to subjects as well as Smart Panorama which lets users take a dynamic panorama of up to 360-degrees, simply by moving the camera from side to side or up and down.

Users can easily share their images on a big-screen HDTV in high definition using an optional HDMI cable or on their social networks using the Olympus Image Share smartphone application (via optional Toshiba FlashAir™ SDHC card or optional Eye-Fi Card).

* 35mm camera equivalent

U.S. Pricing and Availability

The Olympus SZ-16 iHS and SZ-15 will both be available in March

SZ-16 iHS Estimated Street Price: $229.99 (Available in silver, white)
SZ-15 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 Stylus SZ-16 iHS and SZ-15 specifications

Additional images

SZ-16 iHS, rear SZ-16 iHS, top
SZ-15, red SZ-15, silver
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Comments

Total comments: 13
Edwin Muybridge
By Edwin Muybridge (4 months ago)

Love the SZ-15, but...........the Olympus "User Manual" is terrible! Does anyone know of a good source of instructions for this camera? A commercial book/manual or online guide or....?

0 upvotes
Francis Carver
By Francis Carver (Jan 8, 2013)

This is great news indeed from Olympus, wow!!!!

Heck, so far we only had something like 499 models of digital cameras with basically the same specs as these two. Now, we can welcome Nos. 500 and 501 to the congregation, yessirie!

2 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Jan 8, 2013)

From the press-release: "the STYLUS SZ-16 iHS is optimized for moviemaking with 1080p Full HD video and Multi-Motion Movie Image Stabilization to record virtually blur-free videos even when the camera is moving. Its 16-megapixel CMOS sensor combined with the TruePicâ„¢ VI image processor"

From DPR text: "The SZ-16 iHS uses Olympus' previous-generation TruePic V processor"

DPR is probably wrong, and it IS the current-gen TruePic VI.

0 upvotes
Richard Butler
By Richard Butler (Jan 14, 2013)

We're only reporting what Olympus told us.

Which is also what it's reporting on its website: http://www.getolympus.com/us/en/digitalcameras/sz-16-ihs.html

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
David Stahl
By David Stahl (Feb 23, 2013)

DPR specs don't match current Olympus site specs re CCD v. CMOS sensor, ISO, and digital zoom.

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Jan 8, 2013)

SZ-31 iHS was released a year ago. What these are adding?

And it seems you have a typo: "SZ-165 iHS"

0 upvotes
NeoStar
By NeoStar (Jan 8, 2013)

The SZ31 is still supposed to be a higher quality piece. This camera has improvements in it's video functionality and is a more affordable piece then the SZ31, although I do think they could just lower the price of the SZ31 @ this point, and saved themselves a whole lot of production and design costs.

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (Jan 11, 2013)

"although I do think they could just lower the price of the SZ31 @ this point, and saved themselves a whole lot of production and design costs."

Exactly, that is what I mean. Apple does not waste resources designing million pieces of junk to segment the market, they simply sell last years top of the line cheaper when they made a new top of the line. Despite having much higher volumes. And it works so well for them. But nobody learns.

0 upvotes
travelwalk
By travelwalk (Jan 8, 2013)

No viewfinder = toy camera

2 upvotes
NeoStar
By NeoStar (Jan 8, 2013)

Do you post this on every single compact P&S that gets released for the past oh 6years or so?

3 upvotes
ddtwenty
By ddtwenty (Jan 9, 2013)

I am consider myself enthusiasm, but I don't feel the need of viewfinder.
Instead enjoying the large vivid monitor.

2 upvotes
Pat Cullinan Jr
By Pat Cullinan Jr (Jan 9, 2013)

A VF, even a spectacularly troglodytic one, is a help in achieving steadiness at 600mm. It's also of some use when the sun nullifies your LCD.

The price is really nice, though.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Tscott163
By Tscott163 (1 day ago)

Could you tell me what the battery life is on the SZ-16 iHS?

0 upvotes
Total comments: 13