Olympus Mju Tough 3000 Review

April 1, 2010 | Mark Goldstein |


The Mju Tough 3000 brings Olympus' all-action camera range to a wider audience thanks to it's budget price-tag, but at the expense of an ill-thought-out control system and below par image quality.

Although it isn't quite as tough as previous models, the Mju 3000 should still be able to survive the majority of knocks, scrapes and hostile environments, only really lacking in the crush-proof department. From beaches to swimming pools, rainforests to deserts, coral reefs to mountain tops, this camera can handle them all, which can't be said about most compacts, and is pretty impressive given the reduced cost of entry.

Sadly this doesn't also apply to the ergonomics, with the external controls generally being far too small and unresponsive for operation with bare hands, never mind with gloves on or underwater. Added to the constant need to dip into the menu system, this obviously this limits where you'll end up using the Mju Tough 3000, which rather wastes its impressive credentials. Image quality too is something of a letdown, with noise all too evident at ISO 200 and a general lack of sharpness spoiling an otherwise competent performance.

On the plus side, this is the only Tough model to offer high-definition movies, so if moving images are important to you, look no further, although the inability to zoom while recording is frustrating. The much-advertised Magic Filters are a little gimmicky, with the move to SD memory cards rather than the proprietary xD-Picture format that Olympus have persisted with for many years being of much greater benefit.

The Olympus Mju Tough 3000 is an all-action camera that ultimately suffers from being built to a budget price-point. If you can stomach the user interface and so-so image quality, it still makes a very versatile family snapper, but we'd advise spending a little more to avoid the Mju Tough 3000's problems.

3.5 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 3.5
Features 4
Ease-of-use 3
Image quality 3
Value for money 4