Review posted for Casio Exilim Z3!|
(Friday, August 1, 2003 - 04:02 EDT)
There seems to be a lot of action in the compact and subcompact segments of the digicam market, with Casio's Exilim series square in the middle of the action.
Their Exilim Z3 offers 3.2 megapixel resolution, a 3x optical zoom lens, and a large (2.0") LCD display in an amazingly small package. The obvious competition for the Exilim Z3 is the Pentax Optio S, which I reviewed previously.
I think the two cameras are likely to appeal to slightly different markets. The Z3 is more oriented to pure point & shoot novice users, with more scene modes, including some truly clever innovations like the "Coupling" mode that lets you and a friend snap photos of each other in front of the same scene, yet end up in the same photo together.
While the Optio S is also very easy to use in full-auto mode, it offers more exposure control options than does the Z3. I also felt that the Optio had a slight edge in color rendition and image quality, while the Z3's image processing preserved fine detail somewhat better. (Overall, the two cameras have similar strengths and weaknesses optically, since they both use the same lens.)
At the end of the day, I'd give the nod to the Z3 for having more novice-oriented features, and to the Optio for color quality. Both are nice products though, good choices for anyone looking for a very compact, take-anywhere camera.
For all the details about the Z3, read the full review!