Heading up a string of Olympus digital compact cameras at CES in Las Vegas will be the SP-590 Ultra Zoom (UZ) which boasts a ?26x? optical zoom lens.

The SP-590UZ carries a resolution of 12 million pixels and its lens is designed to deliver the 35mm viewing angle equivalent of a 26-676mm zoom.

Due out in March, features include sensor-shift image stabilisation, a 2.7in monitor and manual exposure control options. The ?artistic scene modes? include multiple exposure and ?soft background focus?, while shooting functions include ?bird watching?.

In-camera editing is possible, says the firm which announced a US pricetag for the camera of $449.99.

?It offers the compact body of an ultra-zoom with the flexibility of high performance optics usually found in interchangeable lenses for DSLR cameras,? claimed an Olympus US spokesman.

Also announced today is the ?waterproof? 10MP Stylus-550WP; Stylus-9000 and Stylus-7000 (12MP models); ?Waterproof, shockproof and freezeproof? Stylus Tough-8000 and Tough-6000 (12MP and 10MP respectively); and three new F-series cameras in the shape of the FE-3000 (10MP), FE-3010 (12MP) and FE-5010(12MP).

UK prices and availability are yet to be announced.

The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) takes place in Las Vegas from 8-11 January.