Olympus Mju 7020 digital camera
The Olympus Mju 7020 is a compact digital camera with a 7x optical zoom
- 7x optical zoom, fun filter effects, great LCD screen
- Picture quality could be better, annoying user interface, not swanky enough
The Olympus Mju 7020 is a decent point-and-shoot camera with some fun tricks up its sleeve. On the downside, its image quality isn't the best we've seen from a camera in this price range. Nevertheless, it remains a reasonable option for casual photographers.
Price$ 399.00 (AUD)
The Olympus Mju 7020 is a 12-megapixel digital compact camera designed with the creative point-and-shooter in mind. It distinguishes itself from other compact cameras courtesy of a 3in LCD and 7x optical zoom lens (most cameras in this price range offer a 2.7in screen and 5x optical zoom or lower). However, so-so image quality and a lack of high-end features keep the Mju 7020 swamped by the herd. It’s not a bad compact camera, but we've seen better options elsewhere.
Despite carrying a relatively hefty $399 price tag, the Olympus Mju 7020’s styling can only be described as entry-level. Perhaps we’re being a bit harsh, but it certainly lacks the fashion accessory verve of many of its rivals (step up and shake your thang, Canon IXUS 120 IS, Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX1 and Samsung ST50).
By comparison, the Mju 7020 looks woefully pedestrian — but at least it’s reasonably small. Measuring 97x56x26mm and weighing 133g, it will fit pretty much anywhere you care to squeeze it, despite the plus-sized lens (this protrudes slightly from the camera’s body, but not to any detrimental degree). The Mju 7020 also sports dinky backlit buttons — a useful, if gaudy touch.
The Olympus Mju 7020 has a fairly complicated interface for a point-and-shoot compact camera: a scroll wheel, a directional pad and five separate buttons (not including the zoom, power and shutter release). We continue to dream of an age when all cameras sport gesture- or touch-based interfaces, but for the time being we’ll just have to make do with the Mju 7020.
If you have perpetually sweaty hands (like us) or callous-free fingertips (er, like us), the scroll wheel can be a real pain to navigate. And we mean that literally — our finger regularly slipped against the scroll wheel’s edge, which caused minor chafing. On the plus side, it does rotate 360 degrees, unlike some scroll wheels that force you to run the gauntlet from one end to the other.
The Olympus Mju 7020’s claim to fame is its 7x optical zoom lens. This opens up a whole new range of photographic opportunities that most regular compact cameras lack. For example, it will allow you to capture a close-up shot of a gorilla posing majestically at Taronga Zoo — without getting your arms torn off in the process. It’s also 28mm at the wide end, which ain’t too shabby. It took the Olympus Mju 7020 one-and-a-half seconds to take a photo from start-up, which is pretty standard for a point-and-shoot camera.
The Olympus Mju 7020 comes with some interesting consumer-friendly features, including the unimaginatively named Magic Filters. These are digital effects that replicate the look of SLR lens filters. If you like to go all avant-garde with your photos, then these four filter effects are sure to come in handy (the fish-eye filter is particularly effective). Other modes and features on offer include face detection, 15 scene modes, an assortment of white balance presets and in-camera editing tools — all the usual suspects, in other words.
Unfortunately, when it comes to image quality the Olympus Mju 7020 failed to impress. Barrel distortion was evident in our panorama shots, while colours appeared slightly muted. This led to some dull looking photos that were crying out for a splash of vibrancy — it’s nothing Photoshop can’t fix, but why go through the hassle? On the plus side, images were sharp for the most part and noise wasn’t too problematic; we barely noticed it even at ISO 400.
It’s worth noting that the Olympus Mju 7020 uses xD picture cards rather than the more common SD/SDHC format. If you already own an SD card–based camera and are looking to upgrade, this is something to be mindful of.
Curiously, despite the inclusion of an HDMI port, the Olympus Mju 7020 lacks HD video recording. This is something that has almost become de rigueur amongst midrange compacts and its omission is somewhat baffling. It’s doubtful you would use this mode with any regularity, but it would’ve been nice to have the option nonetheless.
Stay up to date with the latest reviews. Sign up to GoodGearGuide’s Gear Daily newsletters
Follow GoodGearGuide on Twitter: @Goodgearguide
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei P10 smartphone review
- 2 Huawei P10 Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- 3 Motorola Moto G5 smartphone review
- 4 Oppo A57 phone: full, in-depth review
- 5 Moto G5 Plus phone: full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Boom: SanDisk just dropped the world's largest SD card
- Camera app makers tap into RAW power with iOS, and look forward to dual lenses
- Google Camera 3.2 lets you snap pictures while recording video
- CES 2016: Top 10 trends
- Sony α7S II aimed film-makers and low light photographers
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- LG 2017 OLED TV range full review: W7 Signature Wallpaper, G7, E7 and C7 UHD TVs
- Huawei P10 smartphone review
- Huawei P10 Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSocial Media Executive / Specialist (Facebook) - online gamblingNSW
- FTTest AnalystACT
- FTGraduate Technical ConsultantACT
- FTSoftware TesterACT
- CCTesting Manager - Energy sectorVIC
- CCUX DeveloperQLD
- TPSupport AnalystVIC
- TPAEM DeveloperNSW
- FTEnterprise Architect - Network and TelecommunicationsNSW
- TPProgram Governance Lead (PMO)VIC
- FTWintel Engineer - Website hostingNSW
- FTJunior-Mid Level Implementation CoordinatorQLD
- CCSecurity Incident Analyst - Splunk - TelcoVIC
- TPBI DeveloperNSW
- TPDigital Business Analyst - AgileQLD
- CCInfrastructure Business AnalystNSW
- TPSolution Architect - InfrastructureQLD
- FTImplementation Engineer - NetApp DATA ONTAPWA
- TPPrimary Support Officer (Level 1)VIC
- CCTransport EngineerVIC
- FTOperations Manager - NV1 Cleared - Defence Projects - North Ryde areaNSW
- FTDevOps EngineerNSW
- FTTeam Leader Solution DeliveryQLD
- CCTechnical WriterVIC
- FTTechnical WriterACT