Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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Introduction

The Olympus E-450 is a new compact DSLR camera. Offering 10 megapixels and a 2.7 inch LCD screen, the diminutive E450 is one of the smallest and lightest digital SLR cameras on the market, weighing less than 400g and easily fitting into a small shoulder bag. Successor to the E-420, the Olympus E450 additionally offers 3 in-camera Art Filter effects – Pop Art, Pinhole and Soft Focus – and an improved Live View mode. Other key features of the Olympus E-450 include a 2.7-inch LCD screen, contrast detection autofocus and and face detection in Live View mode, continuous shooting speed of 3.5 fps, wireless flash control for studio shooting, Shadow Adjustment Technology, Supersonic Wave Filter for dust reduction, ISO 100 to 1600 and dual memory card slots for xD-Picture Card and CompactFlash, and Perfect Shot Preview for previewing camera adjustments before you take the photo. With a retail price of around £350 body only or £450 for the single lens kit in the UK, and $699 for the double lens kit in the US, we find out if the new Olympus E-450 is the best small DSLR around.

Ease of Use

These days, it is rare to see an SLR with (practically) no right-hand grip – but those who used to shoot all-manual SLRs will remember that grip-less cameras were the order of the day right up until the early 1980s. With all the retro craze going on in the past few years, it was not all that surprising to see a manufacturer come out with a DSLR that paid homage to the now-legendary manual cameras of the 1970s and 1980s, at least in terms of its outer appearance. This was the Olympus E-400 of 2006, whose direct descendants, including the E-410 and the E-420, shared the same essentially grip-less design, and the latest incarnation, the Olympus E-450, is no exception either.

Photographers who have never used a manual SLR – or one of the earlier Olympus E-4×0 DSLRs – will initially have a hard time figuring out how to hold the E-450 securely and comfortably, but the recipe is as simple as it was 30 years ago: hold the camera’s weight in the left hand, clutching the lens, and use your right hand for balance and operating the controls. Having said that, it needs to be mentioned that people with long-ish fingers will still find the compact E-450 a little awkward to use – but those with small hands will likely love the ergonomics.

Just like its predecessors, the E-450 is better constructed than you’d expect given the diminutive size, light weight and low price. Thanks to the glass-fibre reinforced plastics used, the camera feels rather solid, perhaps more so than some of its entry-level competitors. The controls are clearly labelled, although the buttons lack the funky back-lighting you’ll find on the more expensive E-620. The neck strap eyelets are still at the front rather than the sides, no doubt because this position is better to prevent the lightweight camera from becoming front-heavy with a lens attached – but it can be a little inconvenient for the photographer.

Weighing in at just over 425 grams including a battery, the Olympus E-450 is the lightest DSLR on the market, along with the E-420. One of the reasons is the use of the BLS-1 battery, which is considerably smaller and lighter than the BLM-1 that powers the E-520, the E-30 and the E-3, as well as a number of older models. When it comes to storing your photographs the Olympus E-450 allows you to use Compact Flash or xD-Picture cards, but although it’s possible to have one of both inserted at the same time, you cannot simultaneously record an image on both, as only one of them can be selected at any given time as the active medium. You can, however, copy already recorded images from one card to the other, which is great if you want to make backups in the field.

Olympus E-450 Olympus E-450
Front Rear

The Olympus E-450 sports a traditional eye-level optical TTL finder, which is fairly bright and eminently free of any distortions or aberrations, but rather small. It’s fine for framing but not so great for manual focusing, which is better done in Live View. The in-finder status LCD runs vertically along the right-hand side, just like in the E-420, but unlike in the E-620, the E-30 or the E-3, where it is in a more traditional place at the bottom.

The 2.7″, 230,000-dot rear LCD screen has a very wide viewing angle and remains visible outdoors in the sunshine too, but only if you crank up its brightness to the maximum. Do note that the camera may be shipped with a transparent LCD protector, which can be seen in some of our product shots too, but you will want to remove it for optimal outdoors visibility. The  colour temperature of the screen can be modified if you think it doesn’t match that of your calibrated computer monitor. On the other hand, the contrast and gamma of the screen cannot be altered.

As the E-450 lacks a separate monochrome LCD, the rear screen doubles as a status display, which can be called up by pressing the INFO button in record mode. Moreover if you press OK instead of INFO, you can also change all important settings right on the screen, which Olympus calls the Super Control Panel. This ingenious solution spares you the pain of having to enter the menu, and makes most settings changes fairly simple. That said, I regret that Olympus decided not to map any of the oft-used functions that do not have their own dedicated button – such as ISO sensitivity, focusing mode, metering or white balance – onto the four-way pad, like they did on the E-520 and E-620 models. This would have made the E-450 easier to use. Alternatively, they could have made the arrow buttons customisable – but they decided to do that with the Left button only. Well, at least exposure compensation, flash and drive mode selection have their own buttons, all situated on the top plate.

Olympus E-450 Olympus E-450
Front Pop-up Flash

One of the most important functions of the LCD is providing on-demand Live View in record mode. As with all recent Olympus DSLRs, Live View on the E-450 is of the main-sensor variety and as such, serves primarily as a framing and manual focusing aid. While the E-450 lacks the articulated screen of the E-3, E-30 and E-620 models, it can still be used to conveniently frame your photos when shooting from the hip or from above your head, owing to the wide viewing angle of the LCD, and manual focusing is greatly enhanced by the ‘enlarged display’ function. Once you have selected manual focus mode and entered Live View via its dedicated button, press INFO repeatedly until a green rectangle appears in the middle of the display. You can move this rectangle around using the four-way pad, and magnify into it by pressing OK. The default magnification is 7x, but you can raise this to 10x by turning the control wheel. This is real, non-interpolated magnification, very useful for accurate manual focusing – provided you find a way to steady the camera. A second press of the OK button will let you see the full frame again.

This is not the only screen available in Live View. You can specify how much shooting information you want to be overlaid, can call up a live histogram or a shooting grid (though sadly, not both at the same time), and can view what effect the different WB settings or different amounts of exposure compensation would have on the final image, in a multi-frame window. The Super Control Panel can be called up by pressing OK while any of these screens is displayed, except when the green rectangle is shown or when you are in enlarged view, as indicated above. When available, the Super Control Panel appears as a semi-transparent overlay, but can otherwise be used as usual. For low-light or infrared shooting, you can enable a feature called Live View Boost from the menu, but in this case, the live histogram may not function properly and the effect of exposure compensation adjustments will not be reflected on the monitor.

As noted above, Live View is primarily a framing and manual focusing aid, but this is not to say you can’t use auto focus. In fact there are three different AF methods available in Live View, including Imager AF, Hybrid AF and AF Sensor. Imager AF, more widely known as contrast-detect AF, works with a handful of lenses only, including the Zuiko Digital ED 9-18mm f4-5.6, ED 14-42mm f3.5-5.6, ED 40-150mm f4-5.6, ED 70-300mm f4-5.6, the 25mm f2.8 “pancake” lens and the 14-54mm f2.8-3.5 II. With these lenses, Imager AF can also be used in conjunction with Face Detection. In Hybrid AF mode approximate focus is achieved via the same contrast-detection method, but the ‘real’ AF sensors still get engaged when you fully depress the shutter for taking the shot. With a FourThirds lens other than those mentioned above mounted, the camera defaults to this mode in Live View even if Imager AF is selected. Finally the oldest method, AF Sensor, is also available, and might prove the fastest option with lenses that are not optimised for contrast detection.

While Live View can be a useful tool in certain specific shooting situations, most of the time you will likely use the optical viewfinder. When Live View is turned off, the auto focus is about as fast as you would expect from an SLR, even though it’s a rather rudimentary 3-point affair with only one cross-type AF sensor in the middle and one line-type sensor on each side. If you want more AF points, you will have to opt for the E-620 or the higher specified models. AF assistance is provided by the pop-up flash when raised. (note this doesn’t mean the flash has to fire when actually taking the shot; these are two separate functions.)

Olympus E-450 Olympus E-450
Memory Card Slot Battery Compartment

The E-450 offers a comprehensive set of exposure modes, including P, A, S and M for advanced users, a full auto mode for novices, plus a legion of scene modes and three Art Filters: Pinhole, Soft Focus and Pop Art. It is the presence of these filters that most obviously differentiates the E-450 from the E-420. These Art Filters are ‘canned’ special effects that spare you from having to spend a lot of time in post-processing just to achieve a certain look. While they are fun I think they would be more useful if you could alter their parameters within certain limits and also if you could download new ones from the manufacturer’s website. Neither is the case at present, though this might change with a future firmware update. Do note that using the Art Filters slows the camera down a little.

The Olympus E-450 has a number of features that you would not expect to see in an entry-level model. Among these are Pixel Mapping, user-configurable mirror lock-up (called Anti-Shock by Olympus) and spot metering, which comes in no less than three variations: midtone-based, shadow-based and highlight-based. The latter two make life easier for those who know what spot metering is but do not know how to use it in combination with exposure compensation. These options come on top of the usual centre-weighted and evaluative modes. The AEL button can be separately configured, so even if you have, for example, centre-weighted set as your working mode, the AEL button can be designated to use e.g. highlight-based spot metering.

One feature the E-450 lacks is in-body image stabilisation, which means that those who need IS will need to buy one of the Leica branded FourThirds lenses that have Panasonic’s Mega O.I.S. built in. There are only three such lenses, and they tend to be expensive (the Lumix branded Micro FourThirds zooms, which also come with Mega O.I.S., cannot be attached to the E-450 or indeed any other FourThirds DSLR.)

In summary, the E-450 is a compact, lightweight and feature-laden DSLR, which could nonetheless be improved by the addition of a bigger finder, more autofocus points and direct access to AF mode, white balance, metering mode and ISO sensitivity via the four-way pad. If you think these are things you need, you’ll likely be happier with the E-620, which has them all, plus image stabilisation and a free-angle LCD, in a body that is only marginally bigger and heavier. If you are on a tight budget though, the E-450 is the better choice.

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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Image Quality

All of the sample images in this Review were taken using the 10 megapixel Super Fine JPEG setting, which gives an average image size of around 7Mb.

During the review, the Olympus E-450 produced photos of very good quality. Colours were vibrant without being over-saturated even in Natural picture mode, and you can also choose Vivid if you want even more punch. The Shadow Adjustment Technology helps make the most out of the shadows in a high-contrast scene, so you can expose for the highlights. The art filters produce special effects that would otherwise require you to spend a lot of time in the “digital darkroom”. Noise at high ISO settings was easily detectable when viewing images at 100% magnification on screen, but it did not really show up in print, owing to its being tightly grained. The exception is shooting at ISO 1600 in incandescent light, when the boost given to the blue channel to neutralise the predominant yellow cast can result in a more obtrusive noise pattern.

Noise

The Olympus E-450 has five selectable sensitivity settings, ranging from ISO 100 to 1600 in full-stop increments. Unlike most of the competition, the E-450 lets you turn the in-camera noise filtering completely off. You may also set it to Low, Standard or High. The JPEG crops are from photographs taken with the Noise Filter turned off, and exhibit fairly unobtrusive, tightly-grained noise even at the highest setting. This is what you can expect in low but neutral lighting. Do note however that in artificial light, where the camera needs to boost gain in the blue channel to neutralise or at least reduce the predominant yellow cast, the noise pattern is less appealing, as you can see in one of our Sample Images, taken at ISO 1600.

JPEG

RAW

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

ISO 100 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

ISO 200 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

ISO 400 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

ISO 800 (100% Crop)

   

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

ISO 1600 (100% Crop)

File Quality

The available file quality settings for JPEGs include Basic, Normal, Fine and Super Fine. The last one of these offers the best quality at the very mild compression ratio of 1:2.7. Be aware though that it is not among the selectable options by default – you have to first enable it via the menu. Full-resolution Super Fine JPEGs typically occupy between 6 and 7 megabytes on the card; while the – losslessly compressed – raw files are between 10 and 11 megabytes each.

Super Fine (7.27Mb) (100% Crop)

Fine (4.76Mb) (100% Crop)

   

Normal (2.18Mb) (100% Crop)

Basic (1.44Mb) (100% Crop)

   

RAW (11Mb) (100% Crop)

 
 

Sharpening

Here are two 100% crops – the right-hand image has had some sharpening applied in Photoshop. The out-of-the camera images are a little soft at the default sharpening setting and benefit from some further sharpening in a program like Adobe Photoshop. You can also change the in-camera sharpening level to suit your tastes.

Original (100% Crop)

Sharpened (100% Crop)

   

Flash

The flash modes include Auto, Manual, Fill, Slow Synchronisation on the 1st and the 2nd curtain, or almost any of these combined with red-eye reduction. Not all flash modes may be available in every shooting mode. The guide number is 12 (in metres) at ISO 100. Flash exposure compensation and flash bracketing are available. The pop-up flash can also be used as a controller for wirelessly slaved FL-36R and FL-50R units. These shots of a white ceiling were taken at a distance of 1.5 metres.

Flash Off – Wide Angle (28mm)

Flash On – Wide Angle (28mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64
   

Flash Off – Telephoto (90mm)

Flash On – Telephoto (90mm)

ISO 64 ISO 64

The built-in flash caused a bit of red-eye, which was practically eliminated in red-eye reduction mode.

Flash On

Flash On (100% Crop)
   

Red Eye Reduction

Red Eye Reduction (100% Crop)

Night

The Olympus E-450 lets you dial in shutter speeds of up to 60 seconds and has a Bulb mode as well for exposure times as long as 30 minutes, which is very good news if you are seriously interested in night photography. The shot below was taken using a shutter speed of 10 seconds, aperture of f/8 at ISO 100. We’ve included a 100% crop to see what the quality is like.

Night Shot

Night Shot (100% Crop)

Shadow Adjustment Technology

Similarly to Nikon’s D-lighting, Sony’s DRO etc., Shadow Adjustment Technology (SAT) brightens the shadows in a high-contrast scene without affecting the midtones or the highlights. The way to engage SAT is to set the tonal gradation to Auto via the Super Control Panel. Although this option is always at your disposal, remember that it is meant to be used in strong, contrasty lighting at base ISO. Below you can see a comparison of Normal and Auto gradation; the difference is noticeable in the shadowed areas on the left side of the photo, in the foliage. Two other, special-use gradation settings are available on the camera, Low Key and High Key. The former is for photographing dark subjects against dark backgrounds, whereas the latter is for light-toned subjects against a light-toned background. An example of a high-key photo is the shot of the bottles in the Sample Images section.

Off

On

Art Filters

The most obvious difference between the E-420 and the E-450 is the presence of three Art Filters in the latter. These are special effects called Pinhole (apparently dubbed ‘Toy Camera’ in Japan, where toy cameras are a big fad), Soft Focus and Pop Art. The most useful of these is Soft Focus, because the FourThirds system lacks a dedicated soft focus lens, and the effect would require advanced knowledge of layers, blurring methods and blending modes if you were to reproduce it in post-processing. The Pinhole effect creates a lot of vignetting and faded colours, whereas the Pop Art filter boosts the saturation to unnatural levels to mimic the look of, well, pop art. Note that applying the Art Filters slows the camera down somewhat.

Pop Art

Pin Hole

   

Soft Focus

 
 

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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Sample Images

This is a selection of sample images from the Olympus E-450 camera, which were all taken using the 10 megapixel Super Fine JPEG setting. The thumbnails below link to the full-sized versions, which have not been altered in any way.

Sample RAW Images

The Olympus E-450 enables users to capture RAW and JPEG format files. We’ve provided some Olympus RAW (ORF) samples for you to download (thumbnail images shown below are not 100% representative).

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/25s · f/2 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/320s · f/8 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/400s · f/8 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/160s · f/11 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/400s · f/5.4 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/320s · f/8 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/250s · f/6.3 · ISO 100
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/6s · f/8 · ISO 1600
Download Original

Sample RAW Image

Download

1/250s · f/11 · ISO 400
Download Original

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Mac users, we’re pleased to announce Macphun’s all-in-one photo editor Luminar is now available for just $69£52

with special Valentine Day bonuses (two eBooks, Vivid Wonderland preset pack, & Creative Sky Overlay pack) included for free until February 19.

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Product Images

Olympus E-450

Front of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Front of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Isometric View

 
Olympus E-450

Isometric View

 
Olympus E-450

Rear of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Rear of the Camera / Turned On

 
Olympus E-450

Rear of the Camera / Main Menu

 
Olympus E-450

Top of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Bottom of the Camera

 

Olympus E-450

Side of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Side of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Front of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Front of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Front of the Camera

 
Olympus E-450

Memory Card Slot

 
Olympus E-450

Battery Compartment

 
Olympus E-450

Pop-up Flash

 
Olympus E-450

External Flash

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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Specifications

Type
Lens mount Four Thirds
Body material Glassfibre reinforced plastics
Image Sensor
Effective pixels 10 Megapixels
Filter array Primary colour filter (RGB)
Full resolution 11.8 Megapixels
Type 4/3 ” Live MOS sensor
Aspect ratio & area 4:3 / 17.3 x 13.0 mm
Engine
Type TruePic III+
Filter
LPF filter Fixed type
IR cut filter Hybrid type
Dust reduction filter Supersonic Wave Filter
Viewfinder
Viewfinder type Eye-level single-lens view finder
Field of view Approx. 95 %
Magnification Approx. 0.92 x with a 50mm lens set to infinity at -1 dioptre
Depth of field preview Yes
Eye point 14 mm
Diopter adjustment Yes -3.0 – +1.0 diopter / built-in type
Focusing screen Fixed type (Neo Lumi-Micron Mat Screen)
Mirror Quick return mirror
Viewfinder Information Yes AF frame (super impose), AE lock, AF confirmation mark, metering mode, exposure mode, shutter speed, aperture value, white balance, exposure compensation value indicator, flash, battery check
Eye piece shutter Eye-piece cap EPC-1 supplied
Live View
AF type Option between phase difference detection system and contrast detection autofocus
Information 100% field of view, exposure adjustment preview, white balance adjustment preview, gradation setting preview (SAT), face detection preview, perfect shot preview, gridline displayable, 7x/10x magnification possible, MF/S-AF, AF frame display, AF point display, shooting information, histogramme
Focusing System
Method TTL phase difference detection system, contrast detection system
Focus areas 3 points / Automatic and manual selection. For contrast detection AF, 11 points are used.
AF illuminator Yes , Built-in flash (external flash available / inactivation possible)
AF lock Yes , Locked by first position of shutter release button, AE/AF lock button (customised)
Focus tracking Yes , Available in continuous AF mode
Manual focus Yes , Available by rotating focus ring, available for setting manual focus operation in AF mode (customised)
Single AF Yes
Single AF + MF Yes
Continuous AF Yes , only available for TTL phase difference detection
Continuous AF + MF Yes , only available for TTL phase difference detection
Detection range 0 – 19 EV (ISO 100)
Exposure System
Exposure compensation +/- 5 EV / 1/3 steps
Exposure bracketing 3 frames / +/- 1/3, 2/3, 1 EV steps
Exposure Modes
Auto Yes
Programme automatic Yes
Aperture priority Yes
Shutter priority Yes
Manual Yes
Scene Modes 28
Light Metering
Method TTL open aperture light metering
Zones 49 zones Multi-pattern Sensing System
Detection range 1 – 20 EV (50mm, 1:2, ISO 100)
ESP light metering Yes
Spot metering Yes
Centre weighted metering Yes
Highlight Yes
Shadow Yes
Art Filter
Pin Hole Reproduces the peripheral vignetting and unique colour tone of photos taken with a pin hole camera
Pop Art Emphasizes colors and creates bright, vibrant images with a pop-art tone
Soft Focus Gives images a light, ethereal look and evokes a dreamy, mystical mood
Sensitivity
Auto ISO 100 – 1600
Manual ISO 100 – 1600 (adjustable in 1 EV steps)
Shutter
Shutter type Electronically controlled focal plane shutter
Shutter release Soft Touch Electromagnetic
Self timer 12 s / 2 s
Anti Shock Yes Release delay: 1 – 30 s
Shutter Speeds
Shutter speed range 1/4000 – 60 s
AUTO 1/4000 – 2 s
Shutter speed P, Ps 1/4000 – 60 s (up to 30 min in Bulb mode)
Shutter speed A priority 1/4000 – 60 s (up to 30 min in Bulb mode)
Shutter speed S priority 1/4000 – 60 s (up to 30 min in Bulb mode)
Shutter speed Manual 1/4000 – 60 s (up to 30 min in Bulb mode)
Shutter speed scene mode 1/4000 – 4 s
White Balance
AUTO WB system Advanced detection system with Live MOS sensor
Manual White balance (One-Touch) Yes
White balance adjustment +/- 7 in each A-B / G-M axis (in Auto WB, preset WB mode & one-touch WB)
Selectable steps in Kelvin 8 steps (3000 – 7500 K)
Overcast Yes
Shade Yes
Tungsten Yes
Sunlight Yes
Flash Yes
Flourescent 1 Yes
Flourescent 2 Yes
Flourescent 3 Yes
Sequence Shooting
Sequential shooting mode 3.5 fps / Up to card capacity in Large Normal mode
3.5 fps / 8 frames RAW
Image Processing
Colour space sRGB / AdobeRGB
Engine TruePic III+
Sharpness + Contrast 5 levels
Saturation 5 levels
Contrast 5 levels
Black & White filter Yellow, Orange, Red, Green
Black & White toning Sepia, Blue, Purple or Green in Black & White mode
Picture mode Vivid, Natural, Muted, Portrait, Black & White (default setting Natural).
Gradation 4 (auto, high key, normal, low key)
Internal Flash
Guide number 12 (ISO 100)
Flash compensation +/- 3 EV / 1/3 EV steps
Modes AUTO, Manual, Red-eye reduction, Slow synchronisation, Slow synchronisation 2nd curtain, Fill-in, Slow synchronisation with red-eye reduction, Off
External Flash Control
X-sync speed 1/180 s / 1/4000 s (Super FP Mode)
Type TTL auto FP/ TTL auto for Olympus dedicated flash, auto or manual.
Synchronisation modes Auto, Manual, Red-eye reduction, Slow syncro with red-eye reduction, Slow syncro, 2nd curtain and slow syncro, Fill-in for exclusive flash
Built-in flash and wireless flash control from the camera body
Compatible external flash FL-50R, FL-36R
Control method Triggered and controlled by built-in flash light
Modes TTL Auto (TTL pre-flash mode), Auto, Manual, FP TTL Auto, FP Manual
Group setting 3 groups
Number of channels 4 channels
LCD
Resolution 230000 dots
LCD type HyperCrystal II LCD
Monitor size 6.9 cm / 2.7 ”
Brightness adjustment 15 levels
Colour balance 15 levels
Super Control Panel
Displayed information  
Battery indicator Yes
Exposure mode Yes
Shutter speed Yes
Aperture value Yes
Exposure compensation value  
ISO Yes
Exposure compensation indication Yes
Metering mode Yes
Exposure level view Yes
Flash compensation value Yes
AE bracketing Yes
Colour space Yes
Picture mode Yes
Gradation Yes
Colour saturation compensation value Yes
Sharpness compensation value Yes
Contrast compensation value Yes
White balance Yes
White balance compensation value Yes
Noise reduction Yes
AEL notification Yes
Flash mode Yes
Focus mode Yes
AF frame Yes
Drive mode Yes
Record mode Yes
Number of storable frames Yes
Memory card Yes
Face detection Yes
Super Control Panel (Flash)
Displayed information  
Exposure mode Yes
Shutter speed Yes
Aperture value Yes
Exposure compensation indication Yes
Flash compensation value Yes
AEL notification Yes
Noise reduction Yes
Bracketing Yes
AF illuminator disactivated notification Yes
Colour space Yes
Wireless channel setting Yes
Built-in flash intensity Yes
Group settings Yes
View Images
Histogram in playback mode Yes
Zoom Yes 2-14 x
Index Yes 4, 9, 16, 25, 49, 100 frames
Slide show Yes
Shooting information Exposure mode, metering mode, shutter speed, aperture value, exposure compensation level, ISO, colour space, white balance mode, white balance compensation level, focal length, focus area, file type, picture mode, file name, image size, recorded card type.
Exposure level view Histogram (R,G,B available), High light point warning, Shadow point warning.
Rotation Yes
Erase / Protect / Copy Function
Erase modes Single, All, Selected
Image protect mode Single, Selected
Copy mode Single, All, Selected
Recording Formats
RAW 12 bit
RAW & JPEG Yes Parallel recording
JPEG Yes
Image Size
RAW 3648 x 2736 / 11 MB / frame
Large 3648 x 2736 Super Fine / 6.8 MB / frame
3648 x 2736 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 4.7 MB / frame
3648 x 2736 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 2.2 MB / frame
3648 x 2736 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 1.5 MB / frame
Middle 3200 x 2400 Super Fine / 5.3 MB / frame
3200 x 2400 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 3.7 MB / frame
3200 x 2400 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 1.7 MB / frame
3200 x 2400 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 1.1 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Super Fine / 3.6 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 2.2 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 1.1 MB / frame
2560 x 1920 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.7 MB / frame
Small 1600 x 1200 Super Fine / 1.3 MB / frame
1600 x 1200 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.8 MB / frame
1600 x 1200 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.5 MB / frame
1600 x 1200 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.3 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Super Fine / 0.8 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.5 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.3 MB / frame
1280 x 960 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.2 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Super Fine / 0.5 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.4 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.2 MB / frame
1024 x 768 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.1 MB / frame
640 x 480 Super Fine / 0.2 MB / frame
640 x 480 Fine (compression: 1/4) / 0.2 MB / frame
640 x 480 Normal (compression: 1/8) / 0.1 MB / frame
640 x 480 Basic (compression: 1/12) / 0.1 MB / frame
Still Image Recording
EXIF 2.2
PIM III
DPOF Yes
DCF Yes
Image Editing
RAW data edit Yes
Shadow Adjustment Yes
Trimming Yes
Red-eye reduction Yes
Black & White Yes
Sepia Yes
Correction of saturation Yes
Resize Yes
Menu
Menu languages in camera English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Czech, Dutch, Danish, Polish
Menu languages by download Additional one language from 15 further languages by download via the internet.
Customisation Options
Left arrow button Off, one-touch WB, test picture, preview, Live View, face detection
Drive button Drive, AF target selection, AF mode, WB mode, Metering mode, ISO setting
Custom preset options 2
Power Supply
Battery BLS-1 Li-Ion battery (included)
Battery life Approx. 500 shots with BLS-1 under CIPA testing standard.
Sleep mode 1, 3, 5, 10 min. and off selectable.
Environment
Temperature 0 – 40 °C operating temperature / -20 – 60 °C storage temperature
Humidity 30 – 90 % operation humidity / 10 – 90 % storage humidity
Size
Dimensions (W x H x D) 129.5 x 91 x 53 mm (without protrusions)
Weight 380 g (body only)
Interface
Media Dual slot for CompactFlash card (Type I and II), Microdrive and xD picture card
USB 2.0 High Speed Yes
Combined V & USB output Yes NTSC or PAL selectable
Infrared Yes

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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Conclusion

The Olympus E-450 is a very compact, lightweight yet fairly robust feeling little DSLR that comes with a lot of features for an entry-level camera. Not only does it offer manual exposure and focusing modes for the advanced user; it also has features like highlight-, shadow- and midtone-based spot metering, user-configurable mirror lock-up (Anti-Shock), wireless TTL flash control, Shadow Adjustment Technology and contrast-detect auto-focus in Live View.

Other features, however, are notable by their absence. These include image stabilisation, LCD articulation and video recording. The controls also leave a bit to be desired, as there are no dedicated buttons for changing the focusing mode, ISO sensitivity, white balance and metering mode. This is regrettable even if there is a customisable Fn button and a reprogrammable drive mode button – I would really have liked to see these functions mapped onto the four-way controller. Finally, the E-450 makes do with the small finder and rudimentary 3-point auto-focus of the E-420, both of which seem frankly obsolete for a 2009 model. To be fair, if you are really bothered by any of these, you can opt for the Olympus E-620 instead, which has everything you may miss from the E-450 except video.

The advantage of the E-450 over the E-620 is its lower price and weight – not that the E-620 is terribly heavy but the E-450 is lighter still, and costs considerably less. A more important question is what the E-450 offers over the E-420, which can be had for even less? A subtly different LCD screen and processing engine aside, the difference is limited to the three Art Filters, present in the E-450 but absent from the E-420. The Art Filters are well implemented and admittedly fun to use, but are they enough to sway you away from the cheaper E-420? Only you can tell.

4 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 4
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 4.5
Value for money 5

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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Main Rivals

Listed below are some of the rivals of the Olympus E-450.

Canon EOS 500D

Canon EOS 500D Review thumbnail

The Canon EOS 500D is the latest DSLR camera to jump on the HD video bandwagon, offering 1080p and 720p quality settings. Also known as the Digital Rebel T1i, the successor to the EOS 450D features a 15 megapixel CMOS sensor, 940,000 dot 3-inch LCD screen, Live View and ISO range of 100-12800. At $799.99 / £869.99 body only or $899.99 / £969.99 with the EF-S 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 IS kit lens, find out if the Canon EOS 500D is the best consumer digital SLR in our expert review.

Olympus E-450 Review Image

Olympus E-450 Review Image

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SOURCE:http://www.photographyblog.com/reviews/olympus_e450_review