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I recently went in search of a digital camera that I will not hesitate to take along with me every time I go out. My current DSLR tends to be left behind a lot, as my back is finally rebelling after years of abuse!
Two reasons for looking at a compact, rather than a lighter, newer SLR is that until manufacturers have solved the dust problem with SLR, I will stay away from the DSLR market (a problem not much talked about but which is extremely common!)
Before getting on to the review of the Olympus SP-560 UZ, let me give this advice to anyone considering treating themselves this Christmas: buy a compact, as the fixed lens does not allow particles of dust to get onto the CCD, unlike with SLR, a very costly problem!
So, there I went, in search of a potential replacement for my DSLR; the first camera I checked out was the: Olympus SP-560 UZ; a 'bridge' camera (just under a pro category) with a wealth of extremely performing features. An 18x wide angle optical zoon (equivalent to 27-486 mm standard 35 mm) allows you to give free rein to your imagination. The image stabiliser helps avoid blurry images, caused by movement when taking a picture, a common problem when using a powerful zoom.
The face detection technology gives an added security when taking portraits, plus the Shadow Adjustment technology which helps you avoid those annoying dark areas in your pictures.
The 2.5" LCD screen at the back is big enough to allow you to compose your picture accurately and the 8 megapixels of the CCD ranks the camera as 'average' in terms of resolution.
You can use this camera either in 'auto', 'program', or 'manual' (in addition to another 15 pre-set possibilities) depending on how proficient you are at setting your own preferences for your purpose.
The features are easy to understand and the manual is relatively easy to follow. The camera feels light and comfi in your hand with dimensions of 116 x 78,5 x 78 mm for 365 g
So, if it is so cool and full of features, why didn't I buy it then?
Well, the main prolem I found was with the quality of colour reproduction; colours appear quite dull, especially in low light conditions and when using higher iso settings.
This does not make it a bad camera; it is quite a good, reliable, reasonably priced bridge camera and would, I am sure, satisfy anyone who is less demanding...
As for me, I shall continue my search and keep you updated with my findings!!!