The XA capsule camera was launched in 1979. It was fitted with a barrier-type lens cover that eliminated the need for a case. Extremely portable and ready to shoot at a moment's notice, this superb compact camera also incorporated a range of sophisticated features, including a built-in rangefinder and aperture-preferred AE. There was also an externally mounted strobe flash unit designed to harmonize with the XA body. The XA was the first full-featured camera in which plastic materials were used for the body and other key parts. Olympus upgraded its plastic molding system and established new technologies to produce this camera.