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Olympus C-3030

Olympus extends their high-end compact to 3.3 megapixels, adds sound to its movies!

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C-3030 Test Images

Review First Posted: 5/18/2000

We've begun including links in our reviews to a Thumber-generated index page for our test shots. The Thumber data includes a host of information on the images, including shutter speed, ISO setting, compression setting, etc. Rather than clutter the page below with *all* that detail, we're posting the Thumber index so only those interested in the information need wade through it! ;)

  *Special Category* Movie Audio: Well, we won't be winning any Oscars, but we did get a shot of two people talking (myself and Marti, my wife and long-suffering IR model). This was shot in a quiet environment, so no idea how the camera would do with more backgroud noise, but it should nonetheless give you some idea of what to expect. This was shot in the "HQ" recording mode, and is about a 2MB download.  
Outdoor portrait: (1768k) This is a tough shot for many digicams, due to the extreme tonal range (which is why we set it up this way). The trick is to hold highlight and shadow detail without producing a "flat" picture with muddy colors. We shot with both the automatic (1751k) and daylight (1768k) white balance settings for this image, choosing daylight because it produced the most accurate color balance. (The automatic setting appeared just a little bit cool.) Nice color balance overall, although the blue flowers and pants look a little dark, and also show some signs of the "purple blues" problem. (Many digicams have a tendency to reproduce this tone with a purplish hue. The C-3030 does this slightly, and also darkens the tone somewhat.). We shot our main image at +0.7 EV which gave us the best overall exposure, even though the highlight areas are rather "hot". - The C-3030 produces fairly high-contrast images, with strong highlights and deep shadows. Shadow detail is very good though, with very little noise: With high-contrast subjects like this, you'll generally want to underexpose slightly to preserve highlight detail, and boost the midtone values after the fact in an imaging program. Resolution and detail are excellent, with what looks to our eyes like a just-right amount of in-camera sharpening. The table below shows the results of a range of exposure settings from zero to +1.3 EV in the daylight white balance setting.

Exposure Compensation Settings:
0.0 EV
Shutter: 1/650
Aperture: F7
(1722k)
+0.3 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F7
(1714k)
+0.7 EV
Shutter: 1/650
Aperture: F5.6
(1768k)
+1.0 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5.6
(1730k)
+1.3 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1734k)


 
Closer portrait: (1712k) The C-3030 does an excellent job with this "portrait" shot, thanks in part to the camera's 3x zoom lens. (Shorter focal length lenses tend to distort facial features in close-up shots like this and the availability of longer focal lengths is a key feature if you're going to be shooting close-up people shots). As usual in this test, our main shot (1712k) didn't require any exposure adjustment. Resolution and detail again look nice and crisp, with very little noise in the shadows. The table below shows the results of a range of exposure settings from zero to +1.3 EV in the daylight white balance setting.

Exposure Compensation Settings:
0.0 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5.6
(1712k)
+0.3 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1641k)
+0.7 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F4.5
(1663k)
+1.0 EV
Shutter: 1/650
Aperture: F3.6
(2200k)
+1.3 EV
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F3.6
(2042k)


 
Indoor portrait, flash: (1570k) The C-3030 did a really excellent job in this category as well. For our first series, we pointed the camera's built-in flash directly at the subject and varied the flash intensity setting (which is adjustable from -2.0 to +2.0 EV in 1/3 increments). Keeping the flash at the normal intensity setting produced this (1606k) slightly dark image which has a moderate magenta cast and bluish highlight areas. Boosting the flash intensity to +0.3 EV (1616k) produced a slightly brighter image, though still with a bit of an overall magenta color shift. Next, we increased the flash intensity to +0.7 EV (1615k), which gave us a much nicer exposure with a better color balance. The subject is well-illuminated with no harsh shadows. Finally, we set the flash intensity to +1.0 EV (1642k), which is about the brightest we'd recommend for this setup. Here, the image is much brighter, but we begin to see harsh shadows against the background. Still, the highlight areas aren't too hot and the color balance looks good overall. (Although the camera still shows some of the blue/purple problem that seems so common with digicams.) We also tried setting the camera's ISO to 400 (1514k) and boosting the flash sensitivity to +0.7 EV, which gave us a very nice exposure with only a little noise (due to the higher ISO setting). We then utilized the camera's Slow Shutter (1570k) setting (also at the +0.7 EV sensitivity level), which gave us the best exposure overall, and the image we selected as the main one for this category. Both the ISO 400 and Slow Shutter images gave us nicer exposures by letting in more ambient light, but we preferred the Slow Shutter version because of its lower noise level. (Although the noise level at ISO 400 is not bad at all, much better than many digicams we've seen).

The C-3030 supports the dedicated Olympus FL-40 flash unit, which of course would produce far superior images than those obtained with the onboard flash. We didn't have an FL-40 available while testing the 3030 though, so you'll just have to use your imagination... (We've worked enough with internal/external flash setups that we're pretty confident in recommending the FL-40 for use with the 3030, even though we only tested that flash on the Olympus C-2500: If you're planning extensive indoor photography, the importance of an off-camera flash unit can't be overemphasized!)

 
Indoor portrait, no flash: (1586k) This shot is a very tough test of a camera's white balance capability, given the strong, yellowish color cast of the household incandescent bulbs used for the lighting and the C-3030 did a very nice job. We chose the incandescent (1586k) white balance setting for our main shot, which was achieved with a +1.0 EV adjustment in the exposure. The automatic (1599k) white balance setting resulted in a much warmer image (also shot at +1.0 EV). The C-3030 does a great job picking up detail in the shadow areas and the noise level is very low. We also shot at the camera's 100 (1693k), 200 (1582k) and 400 (1524k) ISO settings and we're pleased to note that although the noise level does increase somewhat with the higher settings, it still remains very low and quite acceptable (IMHO) even at ISO 400. The table below shows a range of exposure settings from zero to +1.7 EV in the incandescent white balance setting with an automatic ISO setting.

Exposure Compensation Settings:
0 EV
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F2.8
(1552k)
+0.3 EV
Shutter: 1/25
Aperture: F2.8
(1566k)
+0.7 EV
Shutter: 1/25
Aperture: F2.8
(1584k)
+1.0 EV
Shutter: 1/20
Aperture: F2.8
(1586k)
+1.3 EV
Shutter: 1/15
Aperture: F2.8
(1811k)
+1.7 EV
Shutter: 1/13
Aperture: F2.8
(2218k)


 
House shot: (1660k) NOTE that this is the "new" house shot, a much higher-resolution poster than we first used in our tests. To compare the C-3030 with previously tested cameras, here's a shot of the original house poster at the automatic (1598k) and daylight (1592k) white balance settings.

For this test, we shot with the automatic (77k) and daylight (77k) white balance settings. The daylight produced warm results, leading us to select the automatic setting because of its more accurate color balance, although the final image still had a slightly warm cast, and was slightly dark overall. Excellent resolution and detail throughout though, especially in the tree limbs above the roof and in the brick sections. We caught just a slight amount of softness at the corners of the image, but not too bad. Color saturation also looks great. The in-camera sharpening is almost perfect, just barely given away by the very tiny halo around the dark and light edges of the house. From a resolution standpoint, the C-3030 is just the slightest notch down from the very best digicams we've tested to date, and that small difference can be largely made up for by a low-radius unsharp masking operation in Photoshop(tm). (We thought 0.3 pixels at 100% crisped things up very nicely.) We also detected only a very small amount of noise in the shingles (possibly largely due to the texture of the shingles themselves in the poster.) Overall, the C-3030 does a very nice job. The table below shows our standard resolution and quality series.

Resolution/Quality series:
Large/Uncompressed
(9230k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(1660k)
Large/Normal
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(684k)
 
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(781k)
Medium/Normal
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(292k)
 
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(176k)
Small/Normal
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(77k)


We also shot with the C-3030's variable sharpness settings, which seem to alter the contrast a little to adjust the sharpness. The high sharpness setting is very bright and contrasty, in addition to being a touch crisper than the normal setting. Likewise, the low sharpness setting has less contrast and a touch less sharpening. The results are below.

Sharpness Variations:
High Sharpness
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(1550k)
Normal Sharpness
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(1660k)
Low Sharpness
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(1677k)


 
 
Far-Field shot: (1641k) This image is shot at infinity to test far-field lens performance. NOTE that this image cannot be directly compared to the other "house" shot, which is a poster, shot in the studio. The rendering of detail in the poster will be very different than in this shot, and color values (and even the presence or absence of leaves on the trees!) will vary in this subject as the seasons progress. In general though, you can evaluate detail in the bricks, shingles and window detail, and in the tree branches against the sky. Compression artifacts are most likely to show in the trim along the edge of the roof, in the bricks, or in the relatively "flat" areas in the windows.

We shot this series with the automatic (1641k) white balance setting, as it produced the most accurate white values and overall color balance. This test is the strongest test of detail of any we do, and the bright white of the central bay window often tricks digicams into losing detail in that area. The C-3030 did a wonderful job here and depicted all the details of the bay window precisely. Resolution and detail look great, as does color balance and saturation. We also shot at the 100 (1497k), 200 (1575k) and 400 (1599k) ISO settings, which did a nice job of exposing the image without too much noise (although we did notice that the 400 setting gave us a slightly darker exposure). The table below shows our standard resolution and quality series at the automatic ISO setting.

Resolution/Quality series:
Giant/Uncompressed
(9230k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Giant/Fine
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1641k)
Giant/Normal
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(681k)
 
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1219k)
Large/Normal
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(446k)
 
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(784k)
Medium/Normal
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(293k)
 
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(461k)
Small/Normal
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(159k)
 
Tiny/Fine
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(185k)
Tiny/Normal
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(78k)


Again, we shot a series with the C-3030's variable sharpness settings, which gave us similar results as with the House poster.

Sharpness Variations:
High Sharpness
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1484k)
Normal Sharpness
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1506k)
Low Sharpness
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
(1558k)


 
Lens Zoom Range: We've received a number of requests from readers to take shots showing the lens focal length range of those cameras with zoom lenses. Thus, we're happy to present you here with the following series of shots, showing the field of view at full wide angle, 3x telephoto and 2.5x digital telephoto. While the digital telephoto trades off resolution directly for size, we felt that the C-3030's digital tele didn't lose sharpness quite as quickly as some do (Of course, the best use of digital tele is when the camera is set to a smaller file size, for images used on the web, or for other lower-resolution applications.)

Wide
(1634k)
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5
3x Telephoto
(1652k)
Shutter: 1/500
Aperture: F5.6
2x Digital Telephoto
(1588k)
Shutter: 1/400
Aperture: F5.6


"Musicians" poster: (1513k) We shot this test with the automatic (73k), cloudy (73k) and daylight (73k) white balance settings. The cloudy setting produced very warm results (as you might expect), while the daylight was just slightly warmer than the automatic setting. Thus, we chose the automatic white balance for our main series, because it produced the most accurate skin tones and overall color balance. Resolution and detail look great--we always look at the subtle detail of the bird's wings and the tiny silver threads on the Oriental model's robe, which look pretty sharp as do the flowers in the blonde model's hair. The majority of the small level of noise in the image seems to be coming from the poster itself, so we're very pleased with the C-3030's performance in this category. Below is our normal resolution and quality series in the automatic white balance setting.

Resolution/Quality series:
Large/Uncompressed
(9230k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F2.8
(1513k)
Large/Normal
Shutter: 1/80
Aperture: F2.8
(703k)
 
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F2.8
(793k)
Medium/Normal
Shutter: 1/80
Aperture: F2.8
(288k)
 
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/80
Aperture: F2.8
(180k)
Small/Normal
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F2.8
(73k)


As in some of the other tests, we shot with the camera's variable sharpness series with the results below. Again, the camera seems to be altering the contrast while adjusting the sharpness level.

Sharpness Variations:
High Sharpness
Shutter: 1/80
Aperture: F2.8
(1544k)
Normal Sharpness
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F2.8
(1513k)
Low Sharpness
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(1515k)


 
Macro shot: (666k) The C-3030 does pretty good job in the macro category, capturing a minimum area of 3.35 x 2.52 inches (85.21 x 63.91 mm). This is about an average minimum coverage area among digicams we've tested, but the body threads of the C-3030 in conjunction with Olympus' CLA-1 filter adapter permit the addition of external macro lenses for much tighter focusing. Resolution, detail and color all look good, although there's just a slight amount of softness on the brooch (probably due to the limited depth of field when shooting this close). On the 2.5x digital telephoto (555k) setting, the C-3030 captures a minimum area of 0.94 x 0.70 inches (23.77 x 17.03 mm) but the image is rather soft as a result of the digital zoom. Still, the digital telephoto manages to do a good job of capturing a very small area with fair resolution. The C-3030's flash (693k) does a reasonably good job of throttling down for macro images, although the shiny coin proves to be a bit tricky (as is the case with many digicams). Overall, though, we're pretty pleased with the results.

 
"Davebox" test target: (2070k) The C-3030 performs nicely on this test as well. We shot with the daylight (58k), cloudy (59k) and automatic (58k) white balance settings, choosing automatic as the most accurate overall. Cloudy produced very warm results, as did the daylight setting, which was just a little bit warmer than the automatic. Even the automatic setting had a warmer cast than we'd like though. We did find though, that the image cleaned up wonderfully in Photoshop with a simple levels adjustment, as seen here. The large color blocks on the left side of the box look very good, although the yellow is slightly weak. The C-3030 wasn't fooled by the sometimes tricky red and magenta color blocks on the middle, horizontal color chart (many digicams have trouble here and try to blend the colors into one) or the subtle tonal variations in the "B" range of the Q60 chart, which are completely visible. The shadow area of the briquettes shows a lot of detail and there's barely any noise. Other than the overall slightly warm cast, color balance overall is very nice. Following is our standard resolution and quality series.

Resolution/Quality series:
Large/Uncompressed
(9230k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(2070k)
Large/Normal
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: F2.8
(606k)
 
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(641k)
Medium/Normal
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: F2.8
(221k)
 
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: F2.8
(149k)
Small/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(58k)


We again shot a sharpness series with this test and found similar results as above. We paid close attention to the mini resolution target though, which did seem quite a bit sharper in the high sharpness setting than at the normal sharpness level.

Sharpness Variations:
High Sharpness
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: F2.8
(2140k)
Normal Sharpness
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(2070k)
Low Sharpness
Shutter: 1/200
Aperture: F2.8
(2069k)


 
 
Low-Light Tests 
The C3030 Zoom performed very well in our low light tests, producing very usable images down to light levels of 1/8 of a foot-candle. (We're chiding ourselves for not having gone down to 1/16 of a foot-candle, since it's our guess that we would have obtained usable if not somewhat dim pictures at that level as well.) At these low light levels, with exposure times of 2 to 10 seconds, there is a moderate amount of noise present in the images. (We direct readers to Mike Chaney's excellent Qimage Pro program, for a tool with an amazing ability to remove image noise without significantly affecting detail.) To put the C3030's low light performance in perspective, an average city night scene under modern street lighting corresponds to a light level of about 1 foot-candle.

We've recently changed our test procedure to insure that the cameras we test are at a uniform 70 degrees F (~21 C) when we shoot the low light tests, and we proceed from the lowest light levels to the brightest. This insures that the camera electronics and sensor are at their lowest temperature when we test under the most sensitive conditions (longest exposures, highest ISO settings). CCD noise levels are very sensitive to temperature, doubling every 6-8 degrees C. Thus, if you attempt a low-light shot after running the camera continuously for an hour or two, you'd probably get drastically worse results than those shown here. Likewise, if you were taking pictures on a winter night and the camera had equilibrated to the low air temperature, your results could be substantially better.

8 fc
4 fc
2 fc
1 fc
1/2 fc
1/4 fc
1/8 fc
ISO 100
8 fc
Shutter: 1/6
Aperture: F2.8
(1938k)
4 fc
Shutter: 1/3
Aperture: F2.8
(1879k)
2 fc
Shutter: 1
Aperture: F2.8
(2002k)
1 fc
Shutter: 2
Aperture: F2.8
(2165k)
1/2 fc
Shutter: 4
Aperture: F2.8
(1432k)
1/4 fc
Shutter: 8
Aperture: F2.8
(1634k)
1/8 fc
Shutter: 10
Aperture: F2.8
(1961k)
ISO 200
8 fc
Shutter: 1/13
Aperture: F2.8
(1697k)
4 fc
Shutter: 1/6
Aperture: F2.8
(1711k)
2 fc
Shutter: 1/2
Aperture: F2.8
(1815k)
1 fc
Shutter: 4
Aperture: F2.8
(1599k)
1/2 fc
Shutter: 1
Aperture: F2.8
(2154k)
1/4 fc
Shutter: 6
Aperture: F2.8
(2156k)
1/8 fc
Shutter: 6
Aperture: F2.8
(1916k)
ISO 400
8 fc
Shutter: 1/25
Aperture: F2.8
(1762k)
4 fc
Shutter: 1/13
Aperture: F2.8
(1734k)
2 fc
Shutter: 1/4
Aperture: F2.8
(1626k)
1 fc
Shutter: 1/2
Aperture: F2.8
(1590k)
1/2 fc
Shutter: 1
Aperture: F2.8
(1970k)
1/4 fc
Shutter: 1
Aperture: F2.8
(1792k)
1/8 fc
Shutter: 2
Aperture: F2.8
(2277k)


 
Flash Range Test
(This test was added in August 1999, so cameras tested before that time won't have comparison pictures available. As we go forward though, all the new models will have similar tests available). Olympus rates the C-3030's flash out to a maximum of 18.4 feet (5.6m) under its normal intensity setting, which is consistent with our findings. We shot this test using the normal flash intensity setting combined with the auto, 100, 200 and 400 ISO levels. Under the automatic ISO setting, we found the flash still very bright at the 14 foot mark, with no noticeable reduction in brightness. At ISO 100, the flash was still effective out to 14 feet, although not quite as bright. ISO 200 produced similar results to automatic and ISO 400 was noticeably brighter with a slightly higher noise level. Below are samples showing range of distances for each ISO setting from eight to 14 feet.

Flash Range/Distance, Automatic: 
8 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(150k)
9 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(139k)
10 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(171k)
11 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(170k)
12 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(171k)
13 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(156k)
14 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(166k)
 


Flash Range/Distance, ISO 100: 
8 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(149k)
9 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(133k)
10 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(164k)
11 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(165k)
12 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(163k)
13 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(154k)
14 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(144k)
 


Flash Range/Distance, ISO 200: 
8 ft
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(188k)
9 ft
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: F2.8
(174k)
10 ft
Shutter: 1/125
Aperture: F2.8
(176k)
11 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(215k)
12 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(212k)
13 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(211k)
14 ft
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(202k)
 


Flash Range/Distance, ISO 300: 
8 ft
Shutter: 1/320
Aperture: F2.8
(211k)
9 ft
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: F2.8
(200k)
10 ft
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: F2.8
(202k)
11 ft
Shutter: 1/200
Aperture: F2.8
(216k)
12 ft
Shutter: 1/200
Aperture: F2.8
(183k)
13 ft
Shutter: 1/200
Aperture: F2.8
(189k)
14 ft
Shutter: 1/200
Aperture: F2.8
(189k)
 


ISO 12233 ("WG-18") resolution target: The Olympus C-3030 performed toward the top of the current range of 3.3 megapixel digicams in the resolution department, with a resolution that we "called" as between 850 and 900 lines per picture height in both the horizontal and vertical directions. While just a hair off from the sharpest performance we've seen to date, the 3030 deserves credit for not applying heavy-handed in-camera sharpening in an attempt to boost the apparent resolution. Overall, we by far prefer a more understated approach to in-camera sharpening, as practiced in the C-3030: If we want heavier sharpening, it's always easy to add after the fact in an imaging program. If there's too much to begin with though, you're stuck, and there's nothing to do... Overall, we rate the C-3030 quite well in the sharpness/resolution area. In the resolution series below, we exercised all of the camera's resolution settings (a total of five), leaving us grasping for adjectives to describe the various size options. We finally settled on calling the images Giant, Large, Medium, Small, and Tiny, the largest being the full-size 2048z1536 dimension, and "Tiny" corresponding to the 640x480 "VGA" resolution. (It wasn't very many years ago that 640x480 was the biggest a digicam image got - We're sure progressed in the intervening time!) See the tables below for a full assortment of images shot in all size/quality settings, at both wide angle and telephoto focal lengths.

Resolution/Quality series, Wide Angle:
Giant/Uncompressed
(9231k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Giant/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(1641k)
Giant/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(625k)
Large/Uncompressed
(5640k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(1030k)
Large/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(377k)
Medium/Uncompressed
(3615k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(738k)
Medium/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(228k)
Small/Uncompressed
(2319k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(441k)
Small/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(147k)
Tiny/Uncompressed
(915k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Tiny/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(143k)
Tiny/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(66k)


Resolution/Quality series, Telephoto:
Giant/Uncompressed
(9231k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Giant/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(2262k)
Giant/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(604k)
Large/Uncompressed
(5640k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(983k)
Large/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(360k)
Medium/Uncompressed
(3615k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(704k)
Medium/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(215k)
Small/Uncompressed
(2319k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(416k)
Small/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(140k)
Tiny/Uncompressed
(915k)
Note: TIFF format - download and view in imaging program
Tiny/Fine
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(133k)
Tiny/Normal
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(63k)


Resolution/Quality series, Digital Telephoto:
Giant/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(1086k)
Large/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(589k)
Medium/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(415k)
Small/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(316k)
Tiny/Fine
Shutter: 1/100
Aperture: F2.8
(125k)


Sharpness Variations:
High Sharpness
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(623k)
Normal Sharpness
Shutter: 1/160
Aperture: F2.8
(1030k)
Low Sharpness
Shutter: 1/200
Aperture: F2.8
(580k)


 
Viewfinder accuracy/flash uniformity target: We found the C-3030's optical viewfinder to be a little tight, showing approximately 82 percent accuracy at wide angle (649k) and about 81 percent at telephoto (641k). (Note that we've changed our nomenclature on this to better reflect what you see looking into the viewfinder: We previously would have referred to the C-3030's viewfinder as "loose"...) These numbers are from the 2048 x 1536 resolution size but the smaller, 640 x 480 resolution size numbers are similar at 83 percent accuracy for both wide angle (56k) and telephoto (51k). We also noticed that the framing here slants just a little to the left vertically, possibly the CCD on our test model was shifted a little. The LCD monitor proved to be much more accurate, showing about 97 percent frame coverage at wide angle (641k) and slightly over 100 percent accuracy at the telephoto (632k) setting. (The covered area is just barely inside the darker lines we use to frame the viewfinder accuracy target). As with the optical viewfinder, the smaller, 640 x 480 image sizes weren't too far off from the larger ones (about 96 percent accuracy at wide angle (55k) and over 100 percent accuracy at telephoto) (51k). We generally like to see the LCD monitor as close to 100 percent accuracy as possible, so the C-3030 does a pretty good job in that respect. We also shot at the 2x digital telephoto (516k) setting (our studio wasn't long enough to accommodate the full 2.5x), which probably would have produced close to 100 percent accuracy if framed properly. One problem with the digital telephoto is that framing is difficult because of the softer, slightly distorted image on the LCD. Additionally, the resulting image is somewhat soft, which is a usual side effect of the digital zoom.

Geometric distortion on the C-3030 was moderate at the wide angle end, as we measured a 0.76 percent barrel distortion. The telephoto showed a smaller, 0.29 percent pincushion distortion. Both numbers are about typical among digicams we've tested, but we do prefer to see lower distortion at the wide angle end. (Just to be clear, roughly 0.8 percent is pretty typical, we'd just like to see *all* digicams have lower barrel distortion.) Chromatic aberration was fairly pronounced at wide angle settings, with several pixels of color showing at the edges of elements on our resolution test target. At the telephoto end of the lens' range though, chromatic aberration was essentially invisible.. (This distortion is visible as a very slight colored fringe around objects at the edges of the field of view on the resolution target). The chromatic aberration was more severe at the wide angle end than the average for cameras we've tested, while it was much better than average at the telephoto end.

Flash uniformity was quite good overall, with only a small amount of falloff in the corners at the wide angle setting, which is pretty normal.

 

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<<Reference: Datasheet | Print-Friendly Review Version>>

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