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In a trial, Olympus has marketed a limited edition camera. The Olympus O.product is a camera that appeals on visual terms. At a time when classic design is often neglected for the sake of pure functionality, the strikingly classic lines of the aluminum-bodied camera restore some of the grace so readily seen in hardware from the 1920s and '30s.

The O.product is being produced as a limited edition, and it is aimed to appeal not just to photography enthusiasts but also to individuals who appreciate good design in its own right.

The limited edition of 20,000 will be marketed through selected channels in Japan, Europe and the United States.

In addition to its striking good looks, the Olympus O.product incorporates the very latest in camera technology, to ensure quality photography at the touch of a button. A built -in motor drive, auto-loading, auto-exposure, autofocus and auto-flash with the stylish detachable flashgun allow simplicity of operation for even novice photographers.

The O.product's name is one indication of its originality. Along with signifying Olympus, the O stands for the way that the engineers started from zero, refusing to acknowledge the usual preconceptions. The result is an instrument that not only takes photographs, but might well be the subject for them.

From Visionage no. 11, 1989

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The Ecru is a limited edition, fully automated 35mm compact camera available in only certain areas from April 1991.

"La Vie en Ecru" expresses the camera's detail-conscious design. The Ecru's not only super convenient to operate but also pleasing to both the touch of the hand and the eye. It appears like a heartwarming-white sculpture giving a natural, relaxed feeling in the hand of the user, whichever environment it catches you in.

From Visionage no.15, 1991


Naoki Sakai
O.product and Ecru product conceiver

from Arena 92 Summer



[mju:]-1 LIMITED

With its distinctive deep, metallic black sheen, the Olympus [mju:]-1 LIMITED makes a stunning debut.

In tribute to a meticulous attention to detail and the highest calibre of production quality, only 50,000 of these works of art will be be made available to discerning collectors and photography enthusiasts.

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[mju:]- II LIMITED

The [mju:] has become Olympus' most popular series of cameras.

To date, over 10 million have been sold worldwide. To celebrate, Olympus presents the [mju:]-II Limited.

From the moment you first see its gleaming streamlined body, you will know that this is one very special camera. So special, in fact, that we're only making 65 thousand of them available to the public.



OM-4 for NASA Space Shuttle

The Space Shuttle cannot compromise. All equipment aboard must be top notch. The ordinary standard is extraordinary quality.

To qualify for certification, technology must pass ruthless trials. Obviously, only the most precise, reliable products are adopted after this ordeal. It is no surprise, then, that the OM-4 and several OM System components will soon be literally out of this world.

Virtually the same equipment that professional and amateur photographers use every day is already scheduled for manned flight on the Space Shuttle.

This distinction did not come easily, however. Grueling tests on performance were comprehensive, including operation in a vacuum, stress resistance and electromagnetic interference output. But even with standards and scrutiny of the Aerospace Scientific Photographic Laboratory, the Olympus equipment was certified with only one slight external change - silver tape approved by NASA rather than imitation leather body covers.

Not only testimony to the quality of the design, this rugged performance has saved the U.S. space program many thousands of dollars by eliminating the extensive modifications that SLRs on previous journeys required. Other Olympus equipment is currently undergoing testing for flight certification. And if the past is any guide, it will offer still more cause to praise the OM System to the skies.

From Pursuit vol. 4 no. 4, 1985





Developed by Frogdesign for Olympus as an advanced study model, the camera spurns what the consultancy calls the "pseudo-ergonomics" of current camera designs. The 35mm SLR has a liquid crystal display at the back, with operating instructions. The fluid form is inspired by the symbolic Japanese stone gardens.

From DESIGN 492, Dec 1989

A concept compact camera exhibited in Tokyo-Creative ' 92. The camera body and bellow-type lens barrier are made of maple tree wood. After years of use, the color of wood will become more beautiful.

Olympus has no plan to market this camera

Information from Nippon Camera




A compact point & shoot camera designed by Ross Lovegrove in 1995. The plastic camera body has a soft feel. It is still under development.

Information from Esquire (HK edition), Feb 2000

I: How about the O-product?

K: Young designers proposed it. Olympus has many kinds of cameras. We are possible to provide such an exceptional model. But it didnít admit of mass-production, therefore it was produced as a limited edition. As a result, the attempt proved a success.

I: It was a limited edition, but the price was expensive.

K: No. It was expensive because it was a limited edition.

M: Let me give some additional explanation. Designers are always struggling along with restrictions. But, what would be resulted if designers work freely? We had to avoid financial loss, but a small profit was permitted. I entrusted young designers with all things. The results are the O-product and the Ecru.

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