Olympus Mju 1000

      Photo Review 7.5

      In summary

      A high-resolution, pocketable digicam with some handy functions for point-and-shoot photographers.The 10-megapixel Olympus Mju 1000 offers some handy functions to make everyday picture-taking easier and more successful for novice photographers. Equipped with the company’s proprietary ‘Splashproof’, ‘Shakeproof’, ‘Nightproof’ and ‘Editproof’ technologies, it comes with 20 pre-set scene modes plus a built-in Guide Function that helps users to choose the correct camera settings. However, manual controls are limited and some settings reduce image resolution. . . [more]

      Full review


      The 10-megapixel Olympus Mju 1000 offers some handy functions to make everyday picture-taking easier and more successful for novice photographers. Equipped with the company’s proprietary ‘Splashproof’, ‘Shakeproof’, ‘Nightproof’ and ‘Editproof’ technologies, it comes with 20 pre-set scene modes plus a built-in Guide Function that helps users to choose the correct camera settings. However, manual controls are limited and some settings reduce image resolution.
      The stainless steel camera body has seals and gaskets to make it ‘Splashproof’. You can wipe off rain and spray but the camera won’t withstand immersion in water. ISO-boosting underlies the Mju 1000’s ‘Shakeproof’ function, with a top sensitivity setting of ISO 6400 available (although at 3MP resolution). Shakeproof adjustment can be switched on and off, which is fortunate as the top sensitivity settings are visibly noise-affected. In playback mode, a Digital Image Stabilisation Edit feature can measure the intensity of camera shake and automatically determine the level of compensation necessary. The improved photo is then saved as a separate file – so there’s no loss of the original data.
      For ‘Nightproof’ shooting, the Mju 1000’s BrightCapture Technology boosts the brightness of the LCD up to four times to make it easier to see in dim lighting. Since no viewfinder is provided, this is advantageous! The same technology also increases the sensor’s sensitivity to reduce the need for flash exposures with still shots and provide better video recordings. ‘Editproof’ functions are accessed by pressing a Perfect Fix Button, which allows users to correct image blur and backlighting, as well as fix red eyes after a shot has been taken. More than one correction can be performed on a shot if necessary.

      Design and Functions
      There are good and not-so-good features about the Mju 1000’s design. On the plus side, the camera is pocketable (though not super-slim) and reasonably comfortable to hold two-handed. The zoom lever is sensitive and the LCD provides above-average readability in most conditions. However, there’s no viewfinder and button controls are really tiny, although the arrow pad and mode dial are large enough to operate easily. The latter carries five settings – playback, shooting, Scene, Guide and Movie and there’s little chance of setting the wrong mode inadvertently.


      Shooting and playback menus are similar to those on other Olympus digicams, with an initial blue screen that displays a spread of options. Resolution settings are separated from the other camera controls but once inside the Camera Menu, you find standard pages of settings that are accessed via the arrow pad. Unfortunately lots of toggling is often required to make quite basic adjustments.
      Selecting the Scene mode allows users to view illustrated samples of shots that should be taken with each setting. As well as the standard Portrait, Landscape, Sport, Fireworks and Beach/Snow settings Olympus includes a Documents mode, an Auction setting (for photographing goods for online auctions) and a Panorama mode for shooting up to 10 pictures to create a panorama. An Olympus xD-Picture Card must be used for this setting and the shots are stitched together in the supplied Olympus Master software. In the Candle and Available Light modes, resolution is reduced to 5-megapixels or less, presumably to counteract high-ISO noise.
      Two Shoot & Select settings are provided, both recording a sequence of shots and allowing users to keep the best of them. The first setting captures low-resolution images at a fast frame rate, while the second provides full resolution but with a much slower burst rate. Other novel Scene modes include Self-Portrait, Cuisine and Behind Glass, which are largely self-explanatory.
      In the Guide mode, users can obtain text-based shooting hints for 13 listed subject situations. The Movie mode lets users record QuickTime video clips with sound at VGA and QVGA resolution and 30 fps or QQVGA at 15 fps. Only digital zoom can be used in Movie mode and the AF system can’t refocus continuously while you’re shooting so if you don’t focus correctly at the start of a clip – or if the subject moves some distance towards or away from the camera while you’re shooting – the clip may be unsharp.
      Pressing the Display button allows users to toggle between an image only, image with data, image with data and grid and image with histogram view. The histogram is pretty small – but it’s better than nothing. Voice clips can be attached to image files, with a limit of three seconds per clip. Movies can be played back with sound and the large, bright LCD makes them easy to view. However, no in-camera editing is supported.

      Pictures taken with the test camera were well-exposed and colourful, although slightly warm in overall hue. Contrast was typical of a digicam; high enough to cause highlights and shadows to block up. Imatest confirmed some colour shifts in the red/orange hues but other hues were reasonably accurate. Saturation was modest for a digicam. Chromatic aberration was low and we found no evidence of coloured fringing.
      Imatest revealed some surprising results for camera resolution. At low ISO settings, resolution was well below expectations but measurements at ISO 400 and ISO 800 showed resolution coming close to an acceptable level before plummeting to less than 800 line widths/pixel height at ISO 1600. We were unable to test resolution at higher ISO settings as they can only be used at 3-megapixel equivalent. We also found picture quality was visibly reduced in the Candle and Available Light modes.
      Digital zoom shots were better than average, but not totally artefact-free. Close-up performance was competent, although the camera didn’t block shots that would be out-of-focus. Shooting with auto mode showed colour and pattern noise at ISO settings of 800 and above and obvious softening from ISO 1600 on. However, with the Night Scene mode, which applied an ISO 100 setting, images were darker and noise was much less noticeable.
      The flash was capable of illuminating an average-sized room at ISO settings above 100 but cancelled the flash when ISO 6400 was selected. The resulting shot was very noise-affected and rather soft.

      White balance performance was above average for a digicam – although not perfect. Under fluorescent light, the Mju 1000 produced better colours when the auto setting was used than it did with any of the pre-sets. The auto setting went some of the way towards cancelling the orange cast of incandescent lighting but the tungsten pre-set over-compensated and produced a violet cast. No manual measurement is provided.
      It took just over 2.3 seconds to power-up the camera and record a shot but five seconds to process a high-resolution image. We measured an average capture lag of 0.7 seconds, which reduced to instant capture with pre-focusing. The burst mode recorded 30 shots at 3.9 frames/second with 3-megapixel resolution but took roughly 15 seconds to process them.

      Summing Up
      While on paper it has a lot going for it, in practice the Mju 1000 is a mixed bag. It’s not particularly versatile and relies a lot on its automated features to produce good looking pictures. And, although boasting 10-megapixel resolution, this is only available for optimal shooting conditions. If you opt for the highest resolution, you can’t use certain Scene modes or shoot continuously. The lens also has a very standard zoom range.
      Definitely not an enthusiast’s camera, the Mju 1000 could please point-and-shoot photographers looking for a keenly-priced, conservative, high-resolution camera they can slip in a pocket.







      Digital zoom.


      Eight second exposure at ISO 6400.


      Auto white balance with incandescent light.


      Auto white balance with fluorescent light.




      Image sensor: 7.18 x 5.32 mm primary colour filter CCD with 10.37 million photosites (10.0 megapixels effective)
      Lens: 7.4-22.2mm f2.8-4.7 zoom (35-105mm in 35mm format)
      Zoom ratio: 3x optical, up to 5x digital
      Image formats: Stills ““ JPEG (Exif 2.2); Movies ““ QuickTime Motion JPEG/WAV (VGA/QVGA at 30 fps; QQVGA at 15 fps)
      Image Sizes: 3648 x 2736, 2560 x 1920, 2304 x 1728, 2048 x 1536, 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 1024 x 768, 640 x 480
      Shutter speed range: 4 to 1/1000 second
      Image Stabilisation: ISO-boost
      Exposure Compensation: +/-2EV in 1/3 EV steps
      Focus system/range: TTL iESP auto focus with contrast detection; range 60 cm to infinity; macro 30 cm to infinity; Super Macro 10-60 cm
      Exposure metering/control: Digital ESP and spot metering; Program AE plus 20 Scene modes
      ISO range: Auto, ISO 64, 100, 200, 400, 800, 1600, 3200*, 6400* (*with resolution reduced to 3 MP)
      White balance: Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent (x3)
      Flash modes/range (ISO auto): Auto, Red-eye reduction, Fill-in, Flash off; range 0.3-5.2 m
      Sequence shooting: 3.6 fps up to 12 frames
      Storage Media: 28.5 MB internal memory plus xD-Picture Card slot
      Viewfinder: n.a.
      LCD monitor: 2.5-inch TFT colour LCD (230,000 pixels)
      Power supply:Li-12B/Li-10B rechargeable lithium-ion battery
      Dimensions (wxhxd): 97 x 56 x 22.7 mm
      Weight: 140 grams (without battery and card)





      Digital cameras, lenses and accessories with 100% genuine Australian manufacturer’s warranties.
      Ph: (02) 9029 2219

      Camera House



      Ph: 133 686
      The largest speciality photographic retail chain in Australia.

      Camera Pro


      CameraPro Pty Ltd
      Suite 607, 180 Queen St, Brisbane 4000
      Tel: 07 3333 2900
      Australian owned and run company based in Brisbane.




      Retailer of digital camera equipment and more.
      Secure online shopping and delivery across Australia.
      Ph: 1300 727 056


      Ph: 1800 155 067




      Comprehensive range of digital cameras and accessories online (www.camera-warehouse.com.au) and an online print service (www.royalexpress.com.au).

      Digital Camera Warehouse


      174 Canterbury Road 367 High Street
      Canterbury Northcote
      NSW 2193 VIC 3070
      Ph: 1300 365 220

      Electronics Warehouse


      1300 801 885
      Australian retailer of Vapex rechargeable batteries offering factory direct prices and fast, free shipping Australia wide.



      Photographic Equipment & Supplies – Retail & Repairs. Click here for list of stores.

      Ted’s Cameras




      1800 186 895
      Big range of cameras and photographic products with stores in most states and online.



      RRP: $649

      Rating (out of 10):

      • Build: 8.5
      • Ease of use: 8
      • Image quality: 7
      • OVERALL: 7.5