Product: Olympus C-5000 Zoom and C-5060 Wide Zoom Price: $3,980 and $5,980 Pros: High quality, high-performance. Dual memory slots, multi-position LCD Cons: Priced slightly higer than the Canon G5, which has similarly impressive features Sales of digital cameras soar during the Christmas buying season so it's little wonder that digital camera makers are rushing out new five-megapixel models and slashing prices of their three- and four-megapixel models. Olympus has brought out updated models of its Camedia series. The five-megapixel C-5000 Zoom belongs to the compact category made for those who want a light and easy-to-operate camera without needing to fiddle around with white balance, exposure, ISO and focus. But the C-5000Z also tries to cater to the more advanced shutterbug. It comes with more manual control options than most other competing cameras, allowing for most settings to be adjusted. As a result, photos can be captured from as close as 4cm in Super Macro mode and extended exposure times of up to 16 seconds. It has 3x optical zoom and a hotshoe connection for external flash units - a rare feature for a camera in this price segment. Priced competitively at $3,980, it beats the popular four-megapixel Canon digital Ixus in terms of features selling at the same price, although I suspect Canon will be dropping prices for Christmas. The higher-end 5.1-megapixel C-5060 belongs to the so-called professional consumer class, aimed at the more demanding camera user who could fully appreciate the slew of manual options. Like the C-5000, Olympus claims a fast start-up time of merely three seconds and a release time lag of 0.4 seconds. One of the C-5060's key points is its wide-angle zoom lens, with a focal length of 27mm to 110mm, which lets you capture sweeping landscapes. The camera comes with special histograms. In the 'direct' setting, the histogram generates red or blue squares on top of the image on the LCD to show the light or dark areas of the subject, respectively. By adjusting exposure, you can equalise contrasting light and dark areas of an image to keep details from disappearing; the red and blue squares become equal in number as adjustments are made. You can add on external flash systems via a hotshoe, and the camera has a power grip, filters and telephoto and wide-angle lens converter. The dual AF system ensures focus, and there are four exposure modes. It has a 4x zoom and saves pictures to a dual memory-card slot (xD-Picture Card and Compact Flash/MicroDrive).