The Olympus Mju/Infinity Stylus is my favorite point and shoot film camera. I bought it a couple years ago when I was looking for an alternative to the vaunted and prohibitively expensive Mju II/Stylus Epic. There was (and still is) so much hype around the Mju II, that the Mju is often overlooked, which is great for those looking for a bargain P&S that takes stellar pictures.
The only important difference between these two cameras is the maximum aperture of the lenses. While the Mju II sports a fast f2.8 lens, the Mju has a comparatively slow f3.5 lens. In the land of prime lenses, a sub-f3 lens is almost unheard of. The common perception, especially amongst novice camera enthusiasts, is that faster lenses are better lenses. f2.8 isn’t even that fast, so f3.5 must be pretty bad. At least that’s what I thought until I found a Mju on Craiglist for $20 – a deal so good I had to try it.
Aesthetics and feel. The Mju is everything I want in a P&S. It’s compact, ergonomic, and easy to operate with one hand if needed. There is no power button; instead, the sliding lens cover turns the camera on and off when you open or close it. There are only a few buttons which makes it easy and intuitive to operate. The Mju doesn’t try to be anything more than it should be. If I ask someone to take my picture who isn’t familiar with film cameras, this is the camera I give them.
When compared with the Mju II, I actually prefer the design of the Mju, which is more balanced and symmetrical than the lop-sided Mju II. In some ways the Mju is more pocketable, but arguments could be made for both sides, this is just my preference.
A common complaint of the Mju is the automatic flash which needs to be turned off every time you turn the camera on. It’s a minor inconvenience, and you quickly learn to turn it off without even thinking about it.
Reliability. The Mju is the camera I take everywhere. Because I got it so cheap, I wasn’t afraid to take it places where I wouldn’t take my other cameras, whether that be the beach, hiking trips, or to music festivals. My copy never gave me any problems.
As with all autofocus cameras, it isn’t accurate 100% of the time, but it’s the best I’ve ever used, at least as good as the Mju II and maybe even better. It always seems to know what I want to focus on.
Picture Quality. The pictures this camera takes are phenomenal. I’ve mistaken them for pictures taken on my SLRs and other bigger cameras on more than a few occasions. It’s the perfect camera to use at night because of the built in flash.
Conclusion. Unfortunately I lost my Mju at Bonnaroo in 2019 (the camera pictured is from eBay). I hope whoever found it is enjoying it as much as I did. Shortly after I found a deal on a Mju II, which has been my go-to point and shoot since losing my Mju. I’m probably biased, but I actually liked the Mju better, so much so that in the near future I’m going to sell the Mju II and pick up another Mju.