I checked with
Olympus on this (twice) because I couldn't believe it. But they confessed
that it shoots at 3 megapixel with heavy filters - which results in lots
of "jaggies" and pictures that look WORSE than those shot on my 2
megapixel camera with no filtering.
You're probably saying to yourself, "It can't be all that bad."
Believe me, it is. They look like absolute junk when printed out on 4x6
paper... like something I shot with a cell phone or a child's toy. I
cannot overestimate just how bad they look.
Bottom line, if you are looking for a point and shoot camera, it is great.
But don't count on ever using the 24 scene modes.
This is a great camera, September 3, 2005
Reviewer: Gary Glick
I purchased this camera for my rafting trip. I spent a week going down the
Green River in Utah, and wanted a camera that could weather the outdoors.
This camera turned out to be the best digital camera I have ever used.
First, this camera produced great pictures. I shot nearly 400 pictures and
had each printed out at 4 x 6 when I got home. The colors were terrific
and the reproductions were vivid and sharp. The controls are intuitive and
well placed. The autofocus worked very well. I often reached for the
camera to capture a fleeting moment and was able to point and shoot in
seconds. The LCD screen is big and bright and was easily seen in the
brightest sun (I shot most pictures outdoors). The flash was handy and the
fill flash really enhanced many of the shots.
I also purchased 4 extra batteries for the trip. Interestingly, I hardly
needed them. I changed the battery once at 200 shots, but I hadn't seen a
low battery warning.
Most importantly, the camera weathered the trip perfectly. I took shots
from the raft, during the rapids and during the rain. The camera was
soaked, yet functioned very well.
Overall, this is an excellent camera. It is easy to use, takes great shots
and weathers the storm. I printed out the manuel (all 200 pages) and was
able to figure out how to use even the most advanced functions quickly.
The 512 xD memory card was good for about 260 shots at the highest
resolution. Transferring the images to my computer was a snap. This camera
is good for both the novice and the advanced user. Right now, it is the
best digital camera out there.
Best Point-and-Shoot Digital Around, April 27, 2006
Reviewer: Ruth J. Peak "keyskritter"
I have been an amateur/pro photographer for 20 years. Started out with the
Konica 35mm, then the Canon AE1 and also Minolta. My first digital camera
was the Canon G4, and altho I was overall pleased with the pictures, I
could see improvements that had to be made -- faster shutter speed,
removal of more red-eye, etc. My husband bought a Canon A520, and after
using it for 3 weeks, we returned it. Just couldn't see that it was much
better than the G4. Then got the Olympus Stylus 800. Wow, what a
difference. Powers on quickly, and you can quickly capture the picture
without a shutter lag. Red-eye is reduced. Very easy to use. I took 3
practice pictures with it, and then ended up taking pictures at beach
sunset wedding. They turned out awesome. Especially noticed the good color
rendition when photographing Afro-Americans, Caucasians, and even
Caucasians with sunburns. Every individual turned out crisp and clear
features, even when shooting at night with the flash. I had it on auto
except for when shooting the sunset scene -- switched to that scene mode
-- and the color rendition was awesome.
I then took the pictures, along with some digital video I had done, and
using PhotoShop and another video editing program, and the help of a
friend, converted them all to a DVD. They look like professional pictures
when viewed on my TV. Most pictures didn't even need to be tweaked.
Hopefully Olympus will improve their repair-under-warranty policy that
some have had trouble with, because I was so impressed with this camera
that I am looking to upgrade to another Olympus instead of Canon or Fiji,
which I was looking at.
Great Camera - but only shoot at highest settings!, April 2, 2006
Reviewer: Eric B. Wolf
I've had this camera for about four months and shot over 13000 pictures
with it. I do aerial photography with kites and balloons, so I send the
thing up about 200 feet into the air. I've taken similar shots in all
different modes and consistently found that if it's set to the highest
resolution with minimal compression, you get absolutely amazing shots.
However, if you adjust it down at all, you get an amazing mess.
That said, the camera takes huge 8Mpix shots (about 3200x2800) at up to
ISO400 (ISO800 & ISO1600 drop down to 4Mpix - as does the anti-shake
mode). It handles an amazing array of lighting conditions. It's also very
easy to use. It has built-in help screens. I was concerned at first
because you can't turn off the LCD - but amazingly, I've taken 300+ shots
on a single battery charge with the LCD on (no flash though).
I haven't played with the new Stylus 810. Hopefully Olympus fixed their
compression algorithms. As much as I love Olympus' cameras, I hate their
policy of not upgrading old firmware. Call tech support and they'll say
"that's fixed in the new model".
And one more gripe - xD cards are very slow. It's not just the camera
(which is USB 1.1). I have a Pentax with SD and have tried the same reader
with both xD and SD cards. The SD was at least 10x faster.
That all said, I am still planning to buy another Olympus...
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