Olympus has today announced the C-720 Ultra Zoom, this camera is an update to the C-700 Ultra Zoom. The C-720 UZ appears to have a reduced zoom range, the C-700 UZ had a 10x optical zoom, the C-720 UZ only 8x. The C-720 UZ is expected to be available in June with a US street price of $599.

Thanks to Sebastian Pennings of www.dcviews.com for the camera image.

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Press release:

Olympus Introduces C-720 Ultra Zoom

World's Smallest 3 Megapixel 8x Optical Zoom Digital Camera

May 8, 2002 Melville, NY-- Proving once again that Nothing's impossible, Olympus America achieves another first in digital photography with the introduction of the CAMEDIA C-720 Ultra Zoom. Featuring a high quality 8X optical ultra- zoom lens (24X total seamless zoom) in a compact and stylish body, the C-720 Ultra Zoom is easy to use and is the ideal camera for family, sports, action, and nature photography. Weighing only 11 ounces and measuring a minimal 3.1" x 4.2" the C-720 Ultra Zoom is the ultimate 3 Megapixel camera for an active lifestyle at a price of only $599.

Based on the popular Olympus C-700 Ultra Zoom (2001's best-selling digital camera in its category), the C-720 Ultra Zoom is targeted at the photographer ready to step up to a more powerful camera that is still easy-to-use and affordable. "Many users of point-and-shoot cameras have a need for a greater telephoto zoom lens to capture outdoor and action shots which is why Olympus created the Ultra Zoom category," said Michele Derenches, Product Manager Olympus America Inc. " The new C-720 Ultra Zoom offers an 8x zoom which is an equivalent telephoto of over 300 mm, longer than many lenses used on consumer SLR cameras. With a fast shutter speed of 1/1000th of a second, the C-720 Ultra Zoom is perfect for distant fast action shots, such as those captured by enthusiasts who photograph sporting events, wildlife, school graduations, and performances. The C-720 Ultra Zoom's extensive shutter speed range allows long exposures of up to 8 seconds, enabling creative and travel photographers to photograph night scenes or sunsets with absolute confidence in final image quality.

Picture Quality

Olympus high-quality photos are known worldwide for their vibrant, sharp and photo-realistic image quality. This is achieved with a host of key technologies including Olympus' high-quality all-glass lens (with aspherical lens elements), which provides the equivalent of 40 to 320 mm f2.8-f3.4 in 35mm photography. The 3 Megapixel CCD with Olympus' TruePicTM technology allows users to retain the realistic high-quality look of their photographs, even with large print sizes over 8" x 10".

Ease of Use

The C-720 Ultra Zoom is extremely easy to use. In Programmed Auto mode, the camera offers basic point-and-shoot simplicity for flawless picture taking in typical situations. The easy-to-use Scene Programs on the mode dial provides fully automatic exposure adjustments for the photographer who wants optimum results in a wide variety of settings: Portrait, Landscape-Portrait, and Sports shooting. The special "My Mode" feature saves time by letting the user assign a frequently used function to the mode dial for quick access.

Transferring images to the computer has never been easier with the supplied Auto-Connect USB cable for "no software required," hassle-free image downloads. Images may also be viewed on a television with the supplied video out cable.

Advanced Features

Experienced photographers will appreciate the C-720 Ultra Zoom's manual settings with controls for aperture priority, shutter priority, and full manual operation. Advanced photographers will also value the full information Electronic Viewfinder (EVF), which displays aperture, shutter speed, and image quality settings. Other controls include digital and spot metering; adjustable white balance; multiple flash settings including slow sync flash; and auto bracketing and exposure compensation.

The C-720 Ultra Zoom will be available June 2002. It includes an Auto-Connect USB cable, Video Out cable, carrying strap, lens cap with retainer cord, 2 LB-01 CR-V3 Lithium batteries, a 16MB SmartMedia card, Olympus CAMEDIA Master Software 4.0, instruction manual and Quick Start guide.

U.S. Pricing:
C-720 Ultra Zoom Street Price: $599 (U.S.)
C-720 Ultra Zoom SRP: $699 (U.S.)

Canadian Pricing:
C-720 Ultra Zoom SRP: $899 (Canada)