Olympus MJU 760

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Olympus MJU 760
  • Olympus MJU 760
  • Olympus MJU 760
  • Olympus MJU 760

Pros

  • Great design, sharp pictures, low noise, image stabilisation

Cons

  • Colour issues, sluggish regular burst mode

Bottom Line

The MJU 760 is a strong compact camera with particular appeal for beginner photographers thanks to Olympus' guide system and its intuitive interface. Combine these with good picture quality and a classy design, and have you a great product.

Would you buy this?

Carrying a new funky lavender colour scheme and the same wedge-like design Olympus models are now known for, the Olympus MJU 760 is a strong compact camera. In addition to its stylish design, the MJU 760 packs in image stabilisation technology and produces crisp, smooth pictures that should satisfy the majority of users.

After running the camera through our suite of Imatest software, and taking some test shots, we found it produces quite solid pictures. It scored 1573 in our sharpness test, which is a competitive result for a 7.1 megapixel sensor. There were no signs of over or under sharpening, and our pictures were crisp and clean, with minimal fringing and blurring.

In our chromatic aberration test, the MJU 760 achieved a result of 0.126%, which is not all that impressive, but close enough to what most other cameras in this category score. Our pictures exhibited some minor haloing in areas of high contrast, although this was less noticeable than on most models, and a little blurring towards their edges, but it wasn't serious and doesn't degrade the quality of the pictures.

Unfortunately, in the colour reproduction test, this unit didn't perform quite as well. With a score of 12.5, it's quite a bit behind most of the competition. An average score is around the 8.0 mark, with some exceptional units performing around 6.0. The most notable areas of error were the green and yellow spectrums, with red and blue being surprisingly accurate (these are normally the culprits when a camera has a higher than normal score). However, in our test shots, this imbalance wasn't all that obvious. If the error was in reds and blues it would be more prominent, but as it stands we didn't have a problem with the colour balance in most of our shots.

The MJU 760's noise performance was impressive. It scored 0.56% in this test at ISO, which is a great result. Our shots exhibited almost no visible noise at this setting. Furthermore, at higher sensitivities it did a good job too. We'd say shots up to ISO 400 are usable, even when making small enlargements, and perhaps ISO 800 if you're making standard 4in x 6in prints, although at this sensitivity the noise is slightly visible. We tried shooting at ISO 1600, but things ramped up considerably here and resulted in blotchy pictures laced with chroma noise.

Higher ISO sensitivities are available, up to ISO 2500, however this is only when using the night mode scene setting, and we wouldn't recommend it. There are 22 scene modes in total, along with the fantastic Olympus guide, which teaches you, in simple and clear language, how to manipulate a variety of elements within your shots. For example, do you want to know how to make them brighter? The guide has the answer. This is the ultimate tool for novice photographers, making the MJU 760 a great choice for less experienced users.

Other options include a variety of white balance presets (but no custom mode), exposure adjustment and several metering options. There are two burst modes, one of which operates quite slowly at 1.3 shots per second, and the other which captures a much speedier 4.5 shots per second, but at a lower resolution (2048 x 1536 as opposed to 3072 x 2304).

During our speed tests, the MJU 760's performance was a mixed bag. Its shutter lag was a little sluggish, at 0.12 of a second, but its shot-to-shot time of one second, and power up time of 2.2 seconds were more impressive.

One of the best things about Olympus cameras is the controls and interface. They are extremely intuitive, with a simple function wheel and directional pad setup. Everything is clearly labelled, and all the functions you need to access for basic photography are locked away in a single menu, with a separate menu for everything else. Novice users should have no trouble working out the MJU 760's controls.

Similarly the unit's design is fantastic. While the trademark Olympus wedge shape has gotten a little thicker on these newer units, it is still a distinctive and attractive shape that slips easily into a pocket or bag. This model comes in either a silver or lavender face plate, both of which look great. As usual with these Olympus compacts, the MJU 760 is also weather proof. Completely constructed of metal, it is capable of being used in windy and rainy conditions without deteriorating the quality of the shots. Of course this doesn't mean it is fully water proof, but light drizzle shouldn't prove a problem.

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