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"Picky Details" for the Olympus Stylus 600 digital camera
(Timing, Power, and Storage Info)




When you press the shutter release on a camera, there's usually a lag time or delay before the shutter actually fires. This corresponds to the time required for the autofocus and autoexposure mechanisms time to do their work, and can amount to a fairly long delay in some situations. Since this number is rarely reported on (and even more rarely reported accurately), and can significantly affect the picture taking experience, I routinely measure both shutter delay and shot to shot cycle times for all cameras I test, using a test system I designed and built for the purpose. (Crystal-controlled, with a resolution of 0.001 second.) Here are the numbers I collected for the Olympus Stylus 600:

Olympus Stylus 600 Timings
Power On -> First shot
LCD turns on and lens extends forward.
1.9 - 8
First time is time to retract lens, second time is worst-case buffer-clearing time.
Play to Record, first shot
Time until first shot is captured.
Record to play
3.7 / 1.0
First time is that required to display a large/fine file immediately after capture, second time is that needed to display a large/fine file that has already been processed and stored on the memory card.
Shutter lag, full autofocus
0.82 / 0.66
First time is at full wide-angle, second is full telephoto.
Shutter lag, prefocus
Time to capture, after half-pressing shutter button.
Cycle Time, max/min resolution

1.44 /

First number is for large/fine files, second number is time for "TV" mode (640x480) images. Times are averages. In both modes, shoots this fast continuously, partially clearing the buffer after each shot. Buffer clears in 2 seconds after any number of shots.
Cycle Time, Flash exposures 6 (Flash at maximum power output)
Cycle Time, continuous High mode, max/min resolution 0.22
(4.5 fps)
First number is for 1600x1200 files (maximum resolution at this speed), second number is time for "TV" size images. Times are averages. Cycle time is 0.22 seconds regardless of resolution. In 1600x1200 mode, takes a burst of 18 shots, and clears the buffer in 4 seconds. In TV mode, shoots at this rate continuously, clearing the buffer after each shot.
Cycle Time, continuous Low mode, max/min resolution 1.23 / 0.78
(0.81 / 1.28 fps)
First number is for large/fine files, second number is time for small/basic images. Times are averages. In large/fine mode, takes a burst of 6 shots, and clears the buffer in 6 seconds. In TV mode, shoots at this rate continuously, clearing the buffer after each shot.

The Olympus Stylus 600's performance is average to above average across the board. Its start up time of 2.2 seconds is on the fast side of average for a camera with a telescoping lens. Shutter response is a good bit faster than average at the telephoto end of the zoom range, and average at the wide angle end. If you "prefocus" the camera by half-pressing and holding down the shutter button before the final exposure, it's exceptionally fast, with a shutter delay of only 0.08 second. Shot-to-shot cycle times are above average, at about 1.44 seconds for large/fine JPEGs. Continuous-mode speed is on the slow side of average, but is comparable to that of other compact camera models. The flash takes about six seconds to recharge after a full-power shot, also about average for this class of camera. Connected to a computer, download speeds are fast enough that you probably won't feel a need for a separate card reader. Bottom line, the Stylus 600 is responsive enough (particular at wide angle lens settings) to handle most family photo opportunities.



The Olympus Stylus 600 uses a custom rechargeable LiIon battery for power.

Operating Mode
(@4.8 volts on the external power terminal)
Est. Minutes
(1230 mA LiIon cell)
Capture Mode
312 mA
Half-pressed shutter
375 mA
Memory Write (transient)
417 mA
Flash Recharge (transient)
1250 mA
Image Playback
102 mA
9.3 hours


Storage Capacity

The Olympus Stylus 600 stores its photos on xD memory cards or in approximately 7.8 MB of internal memory, and no card is included with the camera. (I strongly recommend buying a large capacity xD memory card (at least a 128 MB card, preferably a 256 MB one), to give yourself extra space for extended outings.) The chart below shows how many images can be stored internal memory at each size/quality setting.

Image Capacity vs
7.8 MB Internal Memory
Fine Normal
2816 x 2112 Images
(Avg size)
2.9 MB
1.5 MB
6:1 12:1
2560 x 1920 Images
(Avg size)
- 6
1.2 MB
- 12:1
2272 x 1704 Images
(Avg size)
- 7
977 KB
- 12:1
2048 x 1536 Images
(Avg size)
- 9
785 KB
- 12:1
1600 x 1200 Images
(Avg size)
- 15
497 KB
- 12:1
1280 x 960 Images
(Avg size)
- 18
417 KB
- 9:1
1024 x 768 Images
(Avg size)
- 28
272 KB
- 9:1
640 x 480
(Avg size)
- 44
176 KB
- 5:1


Download Speed

The Olympus Stylus 600 connects to a host computer via a USB interface. Downloading files to my Sony desktop running Windows XP (Pentium IV, 2.4 GHz), I clocked it at 854 KBytes/second. (Cameras with slow USB interfaces run as low as 300 KB/s, cameras with fast v1.1 interfaces run as high as 600 KB/s. Cameras with USB v2.0 interfaces run as fast as several megabytes/second.)

OS600 Review
OS600 Test Images
OS600 Specifications
OS600 "Picky Details"
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