Olympus SP-800UZ review
A 30x digital camera from Olympus
Another Olympus digital camera powered by 30x zoom we are reviewing today is the SP-800UZ model. This and another device are the only ones that feature a 30x zoom lens. If all you want is a long lens on a product with an affordable price, then this gadget is the one for you. If, however, you want a product that will offer excellent photo quality along with manual settings, it’s best to look elsewhere.
Wide-angle stabilized zoom
Before buying it, you should know that the camera has the following system requirements: Windows 2000 Professional/Windows XP/Windows Vista/Windows 7 with USB port, Mac OS X 10.3 (or later) with USB port, Windows XP/Windows Vista/Windows 7. In terms of design, the Olympus SP-800UZ is quite a looker with its elegant and slim body. The device’s measurements are 4.2″ x 2.9″ x 3.3 and its weight is 416g. The front ships with a 30x wide-angle dual image stabilized zoom; the back sports a 3-inch 14-megapixel resolution LCD (which includes an extra-wide viewing angle and anti-glare technology), a four-way directional pad, the Menu and Help buttons, the record movie button, the key to operate the zoom and other useful options which works fine in the test time.
A lot of features
On the top sit the power and the shutter release buttons. The resolution of the display translated, during our test, into great images. The menu was easy to use thanks to its user-friendly interface.
When talking about features, the SP-800UZ from Olympus has a HD movie mode, AF Tracking, Advanced Face Detection, Beauty Mode, In-Camera Panorama, Shadow Adjustment, Perfect Shot Preview, Intelligent Auto and Creative Art Filters; furthermore there are 17 scene modes, Magic Filters, mechanical image stabilization, Program auto, Macro and Super Macro and reduced-resolution burst modes.
Perfect Shot Preview
The Perfect Shot Preview was among our favorites, because it enabled us to see exactly how a picture would look before we snapped it. Another very good feature was the Panorama mode; this one allowed us to press the shutter release while directing the device where we wanted it. This option then placed a target and a circle on the product’s display. All we had to do then was to put the circle in the center of the aforementioned target 3 times by moving the device to the right; the Olympus SP-800UZ took the 3 pictures and combined them into one 2-megapixel picture.
Medium quality images
The Beauty mode successfully smoothed textures and skin tones with the help of the very nice Magic Filters (including Pin Hole, Drawing, Fish Eye and Pop Art. The Macro mode gave good results, but pictures taken with Super Macro looked soft.
Overall performance for this review wasn’t impressive, mainly because shot-to-shot times and shutter lag were slow. Photo quality was decent when we performed this test. Photos taken in full daylight had good colors and detail and could be used; those snapped indoors, however, were bad, especially when we had to deal with fast-moving subjects.
Problems with ISOs above 200
Whenever we chose ISOs above 200, the quality had to suffer considerably, and so did the noise: photos appeared blotchy, yellow. The camera didn’t perform in-camera correction for barrel distortion and center sharpness wasn’t good. The quality of videos was good enough. The zoom lens worked just fine, but we had some problems with the mic: we had to turn it off every time we started shooting.
In terms of connectivity, the Olympus SP-800UZ sports a Micro-HDMI output and a multiconnector for connecting it to a PC. The battery let us take around 200 pictures.
To sum things up, the new Olympus SP-800UZ is a fairly decent digital camera. But, as we said in the beginning of this review, you’ll have to look for another device if you want great overall performance, photo quality and speed.
|Resolution Width in Pixel||4288|
|Resolution Height in Pixel||3216|
|Viewfinder Type||LCD only|
|Memory Type||Internal and External|
|Depth in mm||84.7|
|Height in mm||73.4|
|Lowest Focal Length in mm||28|
|Focal Length in mm||840|
|Video Capture||Video + Sound|
|Memory Stick / Memory Stick Pro||Not|
|Memory Stick Duo / Pro Duo||Not|
|Internal Memory size in MB||2048|
|LCD Monitor Resolution in Pixel||230000|
|Max Resolution Mode Video Width||1280|
|Max Resolution Mode Video Height||720|
|Ability to save files in RAW||Not|
|Maximum Aperture Tele||5.6|
|Maximum Aperture Wide||2.8|
|Shutter Speed fastest in Second||2 / 1000|
|Shutter Speed slowest in Second||1 / 4|
|Sensor Size||1/2.3 “|
|Battery Type||Olympus LI-50 B|
|Image Stabilizer||Stabilizer Electronic|
|Number of frames per second in video mode||30|