The Good Excellent pictures; easily mastered control system; strong implementation of live view; powerful burst mode.
The Bad Resolution isn't as high as rivals; quirky flash controls; screen feels small.
The Bottom Line Accessible controls and multi-talented live view make the Olympus E-3 friendlier than other higher-end models, with unstinting burst mode and admirable picture quality making it worth considering for professionals. It's a little heavy and the screen isn't huge, but the camcorder-style flip-out display and previewing options bring live view into its own on this first-class camera
The long-awaited Olympus E-3 is the flagship model in the company's E-Series range of dSLRs. The E-3 boasts live view and assorted features in a dust and splash-proof body. With its lacklustre 10 megapixels and average-sized screen, we wondered if the £1,500 E-3 was already all washed up when compared to the competition.
The magnesium-alloy body is reinforced with weatherproof seals to keep out dust and splashes. It feels heavy compared to other dSLRs, seeming to us weightier than the while still being more compact. The E-Series also is built around the Four Thirds lens standard, which means that lenses made by other manufacturers such as Panasonic and Sigma are compatible.
Despite a wealth of controls, we find the E-3 had a friendly learning curve. Most functions are controlled by two dials at the front and back of the chunky right hand-grip. This allows the forefinger to control aperture with the front wheel and the thumb to control shutter speed at the back.
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