If you’ve ever tried to photograph a sporting event, a concert, or somewhere else public aren’t permanent impeccably still for hours at a time, you’ve seen how frustratingly slow digital cameras can be—a few seconds to initiation up, a few seconds between shots, and a half-second or more of shutter lag add up to a lot of missed moments. If you feel the need for speed, then the 12.1-megapixel Casio Exilim EX-ZR100 ($299.99 supervise over) is for you. It’s lightning-quick and akes fantastic photos and record, but its quirks, counting a less-than-stellar user boundary, keep this camera from the top of its $300 class.
The Exilim EX-ZR100 is one of the classier, sleeker cameras I’ve tested. It has a smooth, hard feel to it, and the dark-gray color (the only color unfilled) makes it even sleeker. The 2.3-by-4.1-by-1.1-inch body has rounded corners, a vaguely raised look nearly the lens, and a tiny bump on the right side that acts as a grip. At 7.2 ounces it’s not particularly set alight, but it’s still pocket-forthcoming. The front of the camera, with too many logos and numbers (there’s a Casio logo, a 12.5x character, and an HS logo), is annoyingly busy, but I’ll overlook that in act of kindness of the if not well-designed form.
EX-ZR100 View SlideshowSee all (8) slides
On the front of the camera, additional than the plethora of signage, is the wide-angle, 12.5x optical zoom lens. The lens extends from 24mm all the way to 300mm, which means whether you want a wide landscape shot or an extreme accurate-up, you’ll get your shot. The ZR100′s skill to go so wide and so tight is rare: Casio’s Exilim EX-H20G ($349.99, 3.5 stars) starts at the same 24mm, but can only extend to 240mm. The Canon PowerShot SX210 IS($349.99, 3.5 stars), on the additional hand, starts at 28mm but extends all the way to 392mm.
The joystick on the ZR100 aren’t radically uncommon from any additional camera, with a few exceptions. There are dyed-in-the-wool buttons for switching between record and still recording mode, and a pin only for switching between release-shot and High Speed CS mode (more on that not more than). The LCD on the back of the camera is very astute, a 3-inch cover packed with 460,000 dots (twice as astute as most pocket cameras, which fill their screens with 230K dots), but in this area average for a $300 shooter.
- 16.2 MP
- Media Plot
- Reliable Digital, Reliable Digital High Room, Reliable Digital Extended Room
- 35-mm Corresponding (Wide)
- 35-mm Corresponding (Telephoto)
- Optical Zoom
- 12.5 x
- LCD size
- 3 inches
- Record Resolution
The cover makes the if not drab boundary a modest more appealing, but not by much. The ZR100′s menus are mostly gray text on gray backgrounds, and don’t exactly pop. It’s simple to steer, even if. If you push the center pin on the camera’s directional pad, it pops up a menu with the most-used options, which is a nice upset.
Rotary the Exilim EX-ZR100 and shooting a depiction takes 2.6 seconds: a fine notch, but nothing spectacular. What is spectacular is the camera’s recycle time, the time between shots. By default, Assess mode (which for a fleeting time shows you the image you just shot before reverting to the viewfinder) is disabled by default, and with that off you can fire a shot each 0.7 seconds, idiotic quick for a compact camera. With Assess mode on (like most digital cameras), it still flies, needing only 1.6 seconds between shots. Add that to the camera’s 0.3 seconds of shutter lag, and the ZR100 is categorically screaming quick for its size and price.
In the PCMag Labs, we use the Imatest suite to neutrally rate image feature, and we care especially in this area two tests: lines per depiction height, a rate of an descriptions serration; and the percentage of noise in an image. The Casio Exilim EX-ZR100 scored well in the serration department, with a center-weighted average of 1,881 lines per depiction height. Any notch over 1,800 is very astute, and the EX-ZR100′s 1,881 is in line with or vaguely best than additional $300-range cameras, like the Editors’ Extent Nikon Coolpix S9100 ($329.95, 4 stars), which scored 1,767.
A few technological tweaks by Casio make the ZR100 an brilliant low-set alight camera, which hasn’t always been right of Casio cameras. The sensor is rear-illuminated, which means the sensor is re-wired to bring photodiodes closer to the lens, which means more set alight can be absorbed more promptly. All that leads to a stellar low-set alight performance: The ZR100 can spring out photos up to ISO 1600 before Imatest events 1.5 percent noise in an image, the threshold at which photos can become plainly loud. That means, when you’re at a party or shooting at nighttime, the ZR100 is a excellent supporter to have. The S9100 can go even further, even if, all the way up to ISO 3200.
There were a link of odd equipment that I encountered even as shooting with the ZR100. First, and most annoying, the camera’s image stabilization when zoomed in is terrible—whatever business further than in this area 5x zoom produced near-universally blurry photos. Second, the autofocus was evenly slow, compelling a second to find a subject, the lens active in and out as it tried to focus. Neither is a deal-surf (even if the image stabilization problem is accurate), but both are frustrating to run into on a $300 camera.
Record recording options proliferate, from the high-speed to the high-feature. You can spring out in 1080p HD at 30 frames per second, and videos are recorded as .MOV records which can be uploaded frankly to Facebook or YouTube. If you’re suspicion adventurous, even if, you can spring out at 240, 480, or even 1,000 frames per second, even if resolution gets ridiculously low, quick. The 1,000fps look is cool, but there’s not much matter-of-fact use for any 224-by-64 record. HD record looked excellent, with bracing and clear colors.
Another of the best facial appearance on the ZR100 is its HDR (High Dynamic Range) equipment. The camera takes three cinema at once: one over-exposed, one under-exposed, and one normally exposed. Persons three images are combined into one image, which typically has exceptional dynamic range and impressive colors that can show details in both shadows and highlights. If realistic isn’t what you’re after, even if, try the HDR-Art map, which takes HDR to an extreme to initiation a photo that looks more like an original piece of art. The HDR-Art map is incredibly fun to spring out with, especially shooting still or slow-moving subjects.
The camera records to SDXC, SDHC, and SD cards. There’s 52.2MB of built-in reminiscence, enough for a link of cinema if you not dredge up your card, but you’ll want a huge card if you’re doing serious shooting—and you’ll want a Class 6 card or privileged for the privileged-speed work. There’s a proprietary USB port for connecting the camera to your notebook, and a mini-HDMI port for connecting it to your HDTV to play back photos and videos.
There’s really not a lot incorrect with the Casio Exilim EX-ZR100, but its subpar boundary and the occasional quirk when zooming and focusing hold it back from topping our list of compact cameras—as does its $300 price tag. If you’re looking for bounty of speed, and levelheaded images even in low set alight, it’ll serve you nicely. If the zoom and autofocus issues turn you off, my sanction would be to either dissipate an superfluous $30 and get the Editors’ Extent Nikon S9100, which offers a best user encounter and huge zoom to go along with it, or dissipate the same $300 and get theCanon PowerShot SX230 HS ($299, 4 stars), which offers best still image capture (but not-as-excellent record), and packs a GPS for geotagging your photos.