Olympus TG-870 First Shots: Comparing the ultra-wide 21-105mm eq. waterproof to the competition


posted Thursday, June 9, 2016 at 1:35 PM EST


Waterproof fans listen up: The summer is here in the northern hemisphere, and with it comes the usual sun, fun and water activities. We've finally received a full production Olympus TG-870 sample, and have now run it through an initial lab run and captured our lab test First Shots.

For anyone new to our site, these are our standard test images of our Still Life target that we shoot in a controlled environment across the available native ISO range in order to allow you to not only inspect the images themselves but to also compare them side-by-side against the competion in our Comparometer.

Want to know how the TG-870's image quality stacks up against its popular big brother, the Olympus TG-4? Or how about as compared to the popular Nikon AW130, or the Canon D30? The Comparometer has you covered for these and more, and to whet your appetite, below are a few side-by-side images at base ISO and ISO 800 alongside the TG-4 and the AW130.

Olympus TG-4 vs Olympus TG-870

Olympus TG-4                   base ISO                   Olympus TG-870

Olympus TG-4                   ISO 800                   Olympus TG-870

Nikon AW130 vs Olympus TG-870

Nikon AW130                   base ISO                   Olympus TG-870

Nikon AW130                   ISO 800                  Olympus TG-870

The TG-870 has a wider angle lens (21mm eq.) than either the TG-4 (25mm eq.) or the AW130 (24mm eq.) and is also roughly $70 cheaper than the TG-4 and $120 cheaper than the AW130, based on today's prices. And yet the image quality of the TG-870 at base ISO and as ISO rises clearly isn't as good as either. There's more noise in flatter areas of our test target from aggressive JPEG processing and less detail in areas like the small lettering at the bottom of the bottles. For this reason, we can recommend the TG-870 for anyone using the camera at base ISO (usually in full sunlight) and not requiring critically good images nor prints larger than 4 x 6 inches.

For anyone requiring decent I.Q. however, both the Olympus TG-4 and the Nikon AW130 are clearly able to deliver better image quality at base ISO and as ISO rises, so hopefully these images can assist you in deciding which trade-off better suits your needs. For comparisons against additional ISO settings or competing models, please visit our Comparometer, and to compare features and specifications side-by-side, please see our A vs B pages.

Olympus TG-870 OverviewLab Samples

Olympus TG-4 vs Olympus TG-870

Nikon AW130 vs Olympus TG-870

Canon D30 vs Olympus TG-870