Digital Camera Home > Digital Camera Reviews > Kodak Digital Cameras > Kodak DC-215

Digital Cameras - Kodak DC-215 Test Images

(Original test posting: 11/26/99)

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! ;)

 
Outdoor portrait: (231k) Absolutely excellent color and tone, with accurate skin tones and great saturation in the brightly colored flowers. The image is somewhat "soft" though, even relative to other 1 megapixel cameras. (Looks fine when printed up to about 4x6 inches, but soft beyond that.) Exposure was fairly accurate, requiring only +0.5EV compensation for our main shot (231k). The table below shows the results of exposure adjustments from 0 to +1.5 EV

Exposure Variations:
0 EV
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: F8
(224k)
+0.5 EV
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: F8
(231k)
+1.0 EV
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F8
(234k)
+1.5 EV
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F8
(232k)


 
Closer portrait: (194k) Again, absolutely excellent color and tone, with accurate, pleasing skin tones. Also somewhat "soft" though, with lower detail. Exposure was fairly accurate, requiring only +0.5EV compensation for our main shot (194k). The table below shows the results of exposure adjustments from 0 to +1.5 EV

Exposure Variations:
0 EV
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: F8
(190k)
+0.5 EV
Shutter: 1/250
Aperture: F5.6
(194k)
+1.0 EV
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F5.6
(192k)
+1.5 EV
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(188k)


 
Indoor portrait, flash: (236k) Very good color balance, and balance between the room light and that from the onboard flash. Interestingly, sharpness and resolution here are noticeably better than on the outdoor shots above as well.

 
Indoor portrait, no flash: (217k) This scene is a very tough test of a camera's white balance capabilities, given the strong yellow cast of the household incandescent lighting it's shot under. Although the DC215 has no manual options for different white balance settings, it did very well in this test, producing a well-balanced image with just the right level of warmth to suggest the lighting it was shot under. The light background usually requires some exposure compensation, and we elected to use +0.5EV of adjustment for our main shot (217k). As we boosted the compensation higher, a somewhat reddish tinge crept in, as seen here at +1.0EV (272k). The table below shows a range of exposure settings from 0 to +1.5 EV.

Exposure Compensation series:
0 EV
Shutter: 1/10
Aperture: F4
(212k)
+0.5 EV
Shutter: 1/8
Aperture: F4
(217k)
+1.0 EV
Shutter: 1/6
Aperture: F4
(272k)
+1.5 EV
Shutter: 1/4
Aperture: F4
(219k)


 
House shot: (513k) This subject is a good test of camera resolution. Contrary to the outdoor portrait tests, the DC215 did fairly well here, easily on a par with other 1.0 megapixel cameras we've tested. Also, unlike some higher-resolution digicams, the DC215 takes very good shots in its lower-resolution mode, for those times you're just looking for a picture to email. The table below shows samples from the camera in all resolution/image quality modes.

Resolution/Quality series:
High/Best
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(513k)
High/Better
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(352k)
High/Good
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(193k)
Standard/Best
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(200k)
Standard/Better
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(146k)
Standard/Good
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(85k)


 
 
Far-Field shot: (366k) 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.

Again, absolutely beautiful color and tone, but the DC215's lens loses sharpness for objects at infinity. Consequently, the image here is rather soft relative to other cameras we've tested. The table below shows examples of all combinations of image size and quality.

Resolution/Quality series:
High/Best
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(513k)
High/Better
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(352k)
High/Good
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(193k)
Standard/Best
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(200k)
Standard/Better
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(146k)
Standard/Good
Shutter: 1/180
Aperture: F4
(85k)


 
Lens Zoom Range (new): Drat! It seems we missed shooting this test with the DC215. Too bad, as it's a bit unusual in its zoom range, relative to most other cameras. Most digicams with zooms run from a moderate wide-angle to a moderate telephoto. The DC215, by contrast, runs from a fairly wide wide-angle (equivalent to a 28 mm lens on a 35mm camera) to just a bit longer than a "normal" lens (equivalent to a 58 mm lens on a 35mm camera). This makes it good for shooting images in close quarters, particularly indoors. Outdoors, you may sometimes wish for a longer telephoto. (For reference, the outdoor house pictures above were shot with the lens all the way at the telephoto end of its range.) The DC210 predecessor to the DC215 had essentially the same lens, and was very popular with real estate agents interested in interior shots of houses.

"Musicians" poster: (349k) Very nice, natural color. Good skin tones in all three models, just-right color otherwise too. Detail on this shot is well within the mainstream for 1.0 megapixel cameras. As before, the table below shows examples of all combinations of image size and quality.

Resolution/Quality series:
High/Best
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F4
(349k)
High/Better
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F4
(237k)
High/Good
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F4
(138k)
Standard/Best
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F4
(146k)
Standard/Better
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F4
(113k)
Standard/Good
Shutter: 1/30
Aperture: F4
(68k)


 
Macro shot: (292k) In Macro mode, the DC215's focus is fixed at 8 inches, and the zoom is fixed at its telephoto position. You thus don't get as much framing flexibility as you would with a camera that had autofocus capability, but the minimum capture area of 2.23 x 3 inches (57 x 76 mm) is quite adequate for shots of small household objects, and is about typical of moderately-priced digicams. The flash isn't actually rated for use this close, but nonetheless does a fairly good job of throttling-down to expose close-up subjects, as shown here (355k). (The direct reflection from the silver dollar can hardly be counted against the camera's flash capability...)

 
"Davebox" test target: (246k) If there's anything amiss with a camera's color rendition, this test will smoke it out! As noted earlier, the DC215 has amazingly good color for an inexpensive digicam, once again borne out by this test. There's just a slight yellowish cast to the entire picture, but the overall color accuracy is among the best we've seen at any price(!). Tonal range is also surprisingly good. The table below has the standard range of resolution/quality samples..

Resolution/Quality series:
High/Best
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(246k)
High/Better
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(166k)
High/Good
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(102k)
Standard/Best
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(117k)
Standard/Better
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(83k)
Standard/Good
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(55k)


 
 
Low-Light Tests 
As noted in the main review, Kodak's official ratings for the DC215 indicate that it should be usable down to a light level of about 6 foot-candles (66 lux, or a rating of 9.5 EV in our previous terminology). In our own tests, we found that the DC215 worked well down to about 4 foot-candles (44 lux, or EV 9.0 in our previous system), but required the exposure compensation to be boosted a bit to achieve that level (and in fact benefited from a modest boost even at 8 foot-candles). It even produced a usable, albeit dark, image at a light level of 2 foot-candles. The table below contain samples shot at a range of light levels from 8 foot-candles down to 1 foot-candle (10EV to 7EV).

Exposure Compensation series:
8fc (10EV)
exp adj +1 EV
Shutter: 1/4
Aperture: F4
(234k)
4fc (9EV)
exp adj +2 EV
Shutter: 1/2
Aperture: F4
(243k)
2fc (8EV)
exp adj +2 EV
Shutter: 1/2
Aperture: F4
(203k)
1fc (7EV)
exp adj +2 EV
Shutter: 1/2
Aperture: F4
(136k)


 
Flash Range Test (New)
(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.)

Kodak specifies a maximum range for the DC215's on-board flash of 8.8 feet (2.7 meters) in telephoto mode. This agreed well with the results of our own tests, which showed the flash being adequately bright out to about 9 feet, but then fading fairly quickly after that point. The table below shows the results we obtained with the DC215's onboard flash, at distances ranging from 8 to 11 feet

Flash Range/Distance: 
8 ft
Shutter: 1/20
Aperture: F4
(216k)
9 ft
Shutter: 1/20
Aperture: F4
(212k)
10 ft
Shutter: 1/20
Aperture: F4
(193k)
11 ft
Shutter: 1/20
Aperture: F4
(93k)


ISO 12233 ("WG-18") resolution target: (249k) The DC215 actually performed somewhat better on our resolution test than we'd expected, representing a significant improvement over the earlier DC210. Visual resolution was approximately 600 lines per picture height in both vertical and horizontal directions, although there was some aliasing at that frequency. Performance at wide angle and telephoto focal lengths was about the same. As before, we noted that the DC215 produces very good image quality in its low-resolution mode, making it well-suited for picture-taking for use in email or on the web. The tables below contain resolution/quality series for both wide angle and telephoto zoom settings.

Wide Angle Resolution/Quality series:
High/Best
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F4
(246k)
High/Better
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F4
(182k)
High/Good
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F4
(114k)
Standard/Best
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F4
(118k)
Standard/Better
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F4
(90k)
Standard/Good
Shutter: 1/60
Aperture: F4
(60k)


Telephoto Resolution/Quality series:
High/Best
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(240k)
High/Better
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(180k)
High/Good
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(114k)
Standard/Best
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(116k)
Standard/Better
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(89k)
Standard/Good
Shutter: 1/45
Aperture: F4
(60k)


 
Viewfinder accuracy/flash uniformity target: The optical viewfinder on the DC215 was slightly better than average in its accuracy, showing 90% of the final image area at both telephoto (82k) and wide angle (76k) lens settings. As we have come to expect with Kodak digicams, the LCD viewfinder was 100% accurate at both wide (74k) and telephoto (79k) settings. Flash uniformity was good at the telephoto end of the lens' range, but showed moderate falloff at the edges with the lens set to wide angle.

We now routinely measure lens distortion as part of our camera testing. The DC215 did quite well in this respect, showing only modest barrel distortion of 0.5% at wide angle, and none at all in telephoto mode. Chromatic aberration was also very slight, estimated at about one pixel, or 0.1%, based on the slight color fringes around objects at the edges of our resolution test target.
 

 

What do YOU think? - Share comments on the images here!

Back to Kodak DC-215 Zoom Review

Jump to Comparometer(tm) to compare with other cameras

Or, up to Imaging Resource Cameras Page.

Or, Return to the Imaging Resource home page.

 

Reader Comments!
Questions, comments or controversy on this article? Click this link to see what other Imaging Resource readers have had to say about Kodak DC-215, or add comments of your own!


Follow Imaging Resource:

Purchase memory card for Panasonic Lumix DMC-XS3 digital camera
Top 3 photos this month win:

1 $300 Adorama Gift Certificate

2 $200 Adorama Gift Certificate

3 $100 Adorama Gift Certificate