Waterproof, dustproof, shockproof. I have simple needs and these are they. It must be said however that these features come at the cost of quality. The pictures fairly noisy and being 10MPx really doesn't help much as the lens is relatively small to keep it safe.
I bought this because it's shock and waterproof and I've used it in snow, ice, rain, sea, sand and dust.
1. xD card. <groan> Expensive and slowish. The supplied xD to miniSD doesn't support many of the capture modes. (I note the new models fix this)
2. No USB charging. This is an outdoor camera but imagine my surprise when planning the three week trips I've taken this on that there isn't a DC charging solution for this camera. I ended up buying four batteries for this camera whilst the iPod/iPhone etc got topped up from a solar panel.
3. Quality. The images really aren't the same as a non-ruggedized camera costing half as much. Shame.
In all honesty you buy this camera to be resilient - and for me that means available when I want to grab a shot. So many other cameras simply wouldn't have been there to get the shot regardless of quality.
All who come to this camera do so for two reasons, it would seem.
Either previous cameras have gone to camera heaven, where they sit on their clouds strumming their harps and look back on their life which ended in crushing misery during a (possibly drunken) escapade, or people have returned from a holiday in the sun to find that their pictures from their underwater camera look like they were taken in a swamp.
I bought my girlfriend this camera for both these reasons.
While I'm very interested in photography, she only really wanted a point and click - something reliable, which takes nice photographs and is fun. This seemed to fit the bill.
It's slightly bulky and not the most attractive (or feminine) camera in the world, but it is reliable, and the photographs (and video) underwater are of a good standard with nice sharp images even of fast moving fish in the sea.
There are settings for almost every occasion, meaning you don't need to be a camera buff to get decent results.
We've found that the battery life isn't as good as some others and diminishes quickly, but I guess it's cheaper to buy a spare battery than a whole new camera.
Overall, a sturdy, fun camera that takes pretty good pictures. If you're an 'outdoors' person, who likes running, jumping, swimming, skiing etc. who wants to take pictures but not have the stress of babysitting your camera, then this is the one for you.
When my digital camera broke and I needed a new one, I spoke to a professional photographer friend of mine and asked what he'd recommend. He told me that he has this model and that he uses it frequently. So, I bought this one in the black.
I have been so happy with this camera - it is so easy to use and takes a good picture. The camera has a feature where you can choose the 'scene' and it adapts the lighting etc for that scene, including really unusual ones such as 'food', 'fireworks' and 'behind glass' as well as settings for sport, night, portrait etc. However, the best bit is the underwater setting! I was nervous putting my camera under the water the first time as it felt so unnatural, but it is fab! I don't really snorkle, but I have a friend who does and she has used this camera for that pupose, taking amazing pictures of tropical fish.
Another great feature is the shaky hand setting, meaning that you can take a clear picture while on the move - I have used it successfully while on the back of a motorbike!
On the downside, I would really like another flash setting - the 'soft flash' setting that you can get on some cameras, as this can be useful when there is poor light but you don't want a full flash.
This camera is awesome! If your like me and always seem to drop your camera and break it on a night out then this is the camera for you!
It has 10.1 mega pixels so the pictures are of good quality and you can blow them up quite big. There are lots of different settings on the camera that depending on the lighting or setting you are in.
Another great quality of this camera is that you can take it under water. It can take some great photos in clear water.
Just make sure that when you take it into a swimming pool or the sea that you soak it in clean water after otherwise it might stop working for a little bit like mine did...well i think that the reason it did anyway but its been fine since then.
Honestly though this has been the best camera I have brought and the price has not really dropped at all on it. Make sure you shop around for price though as it varies by a lot.
We bought this camera for a holiday where we would be doing lots of snorkelling, as we'd found in the past that disposable underwaters cameras were not very good.
It is slightly heavier and bulkier than some cameras you can get today, but not hugely so. It is very smart and sleek looking.
We used the camera equally above water and underwater, and were extremely pleased with results from both.
Firstly, above water. There are lots of different modes - mostly, I have found that camera modes seem a bit gimmicky and don't make any real difference. But this is different. Some of the modes we particularly liked :
Sport - great for capturing fast moving scenes.
Self portrait - ever held the camera out at arm's length to take a photo of yourself and got a ridiculously close up result? Well the self portrait mode is for just this occasion, I don't know how it does it but the photos come out as though taken from a distance with lots of background not just a large face. As a result my husband and I have a huge number of photos of us together on holiday, which is unusual.
Candlelight - we found this was good in any lowish light situation - whether it was in a restaurant with a candle on the table, or oustide in darkness but with ambient light. It produces a much more realistic photo in terms of colour tones, much warmer looking too than just using the flash.
Next, underwaters. We used this a LOT, and got fabulous pictures. We used the various underwater modes - the macro gives wonderful close up photos. The underwater movie is also really very good, we were very impressed.
Battery life is pretty good too, considering we were either taking pictures above water in sweltering heat, or swimmign around for hours underwater with the camera switched on.
Can't think of any downsides to this camera, we are very glad we bought it.
With an effective frame rate and more than consistent efficiency, the Olympus Camera stands out in the crowd as being a more than inept device. Its capabilities are more than efficient for the professional photographer whilst giving an amateur a great insight into how a camera should operate. It's best areas are in the region of diversity and colour optimum conversion.... meaning that colours captured are true to their nature and remain vibrant etc. The biggest downside to this camera however is its vulnerability to the elements as water does have an effect on its performance over time. If you drop this camera in a puddle, it will slow down and even switch off so beware these fatalities. I recommend using this camera in light rain but not heavy rainfall etc and keep safe using a neck holder or some similiar device. A beautifully made camera with many great features.