Olympus has sent a new leader onto the field of rugged-cam battle with its Stylus Tough TG-3 compact camera.
But the TG-3 is more than just tough as it also features screw-on lens adapters, multiple macro settings and Micro Four Thirds processing smarts.
The TG-3 is so tough it has been to the top of Mount Everest and back as part of its testing. While it wouldn't survive a drop from the top it can handle a 2.1 metre fall, a crushing weight of 100kg, freezing down to -10 degrees Celsius, and dust or water submergence up to 15 metres.
The Tough TG-3 isn't afraid of the dark either. It's 1:20 wide-angle 25-100mm lens, with 4x optical zoom, and 16-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor should be able to handle low light shots well. Coupled with the TruePic VII processor, which is found in the Micro Four Thirds OM-D EM-1, photos and video should be extremely clear. They can be shared easily using Wi-Fi, which also allows smartphones to act as a remote control for the camera.
But tough doesn't mean simple as the TG-3 has crammed in four macro settings: Microscope Mode for 40x zoom at 1cm, Microscope Control Mode, Focus Stacking Mode and Focus Bracketing Mode to stop unintentional bokeh using multiple merged shots.
Software can be limiting though so Olympus has created the TG-3 to be upgraded with screw on lens accessories. The LG-1 Macro Light Guide screws on to evenly illuminate macro shots while the Converter Lens Adapter allows for a variety of lens attachments like fish eye or telephoto. The PT-056 underwater casing can be added for shooting in depths of up to 45 metres.
The Olympus Stylus Tough TG-3 will be available in black or red from June for £350.