Olympus mju 7000 review: Olympus mju 7000

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CNET Editors' Rating

2.5 stars OK
Pricing Unavailable

The Good Reasonable combination of features and price; does the job well enough.

The Bad Ugly design and finish; no standout features.

The Bottom Line The Olympus mju 7000 is competent, but offers nothing that makes it stand out. You'd probably be better off with either the mju 5000 or mju 9000

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On paper, the Olympus mju 7000 looks like a tempting prospect. It's a pocket-sized, 12-megapixel compact with a 7x optical zoom, face detection, automatic scene detection, image stabilisation, an 11 frames per second continuous shooting mode and an HDMI output. All this and it's yours for around £200 or less. That's got to be good, right?

The 7x zoom range is equivalent to 37 to 260mm in 35mm camera terms, so you're getting serious telephoto capability in a snapper that can slip into your shirt pocket. Round the back, there's a rather good 76mm (3-inch) display and a navigational controller which lights up when you press it, so that the icons really stand out, especially in poor light.

The colours are slightly flat, but the detail's good, there's not too much distortion, and chromatic aberration is pretty well controlled (click image to enlarge)

It's easy to make routine adjustments, thanks to a 'func' button that offers quick access to the white balance, ISO, drive mode, metering pattern, image size and quality settings. Those who like to just point and shoot can leave it to the camera to work out automatically which scene mode to use, while hands-on photographers will find it quick and easy to take over.

The 76mm LCD display is the high point of the 7000's rather off-putting design

The pictures are good, too. The 7x zoom offers decent sharpness, the colours are accurate and lifelike, if a little subdued, and you won't often need to override the auto-exposure system.

So what's not to like? Well, just look at it. The all-black version might be alright, but the blue one will never be as pretty as the cheaper mju 5000 , and the silver version looks like it's been quickly cobbled together from a bin. The combination of a black plastic lens bezel and metal front panel looks botched and unfinished. And what's with that horizontal crease along the centre line?

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Where to Buy

Olympus mju 7000

Part Number: CNETOlympus mju 7000

Typical Price: £200.00

See manufacturer website for availability.