|Casio Exilim EX-Z1000 digital camera
With the introduction of the Casio Exilim EX Z1000, Casio have paved the way for the competition to break through the 8 Megapixel barrier. The segment of 10 Megapixel digital compact cameras is still devoid of any competition, which means that Casio are indeed seizing virtually a 100% of the market share in this segment, just as was the case with the introduction of their QV10 camera back in 1995. How long they will be able to maintain this position, will be decided in the coming period, as we approach the Photokina 2006. It remains to be seen, however, if the consumer will recognize the value of the high resolution to its full extend.
Casio Z1000 - 10 Megapixels zoom camera
Although the image resolution of 10 Megapixels forms a considerable asset, it does not provide the Casio Exilim EX Z1000 with the actual surplus value that Casio might be hoping for. Unless we are talking about the handy functions, which help enable an extra Megapixel reserve. In fact, plenty of pixels remain when the Casio EX Z1000 performs its trick. The digital zoom, operated either directly, or via the Quick Zoom function, results in high image quality. Granted, it may no longer be the 10 Megapixels, but 5 Megapixels still offers more than sufficient quality to ensure an excellent print.
Casio Exilim Z1000 camera - ISO values
On the other hand, Casio show that the leap to the 10 Megapixel class does not necessarily need to raise a handful of objections. It might not have been of crucial importance, but this was in fact already the case with the 8 Megapixel digital cameras. The image quality can be compared to that of its 8 Megapixel competition. When we focus our attention on digital noise, we do not come across any new discoveries. The Casio Exilim EX Z1000 produces very decent results with the ISO settings up to 400 ISO. The 800 ISO image, taken with one of the so-called Best Shot settings, shows noise is clearly present, yet still offers sufficient quality to achieve a result that is easily printed. The high ISO value of 3200 may look nice on paper, but that's about as far as the party goes. Noise is indeed exceedingly present and, although reduced by the strong noise reduction, the image is not particularly suitable for use. A clever example of marketing perhaps, but an optical image stabiliser would in fact still be the most preferable solution.
Casio EX Z1000 - White balance & LCD display
The optical quality of the zoom lens is superb. There is hardly any distortion, and even the chromatic aberration is barely visible. A pity, however, that Casio have failed to equip the camera with a wide-angle of 28mm. The white balance produces excellent results. The automatic white balance is able to filter the colour cast in virtually all circumstances. The result can be reviewed swiftly on the attractive 2.8 inch format LCD display. Casio have improved the monitor's angle of view, which is beneficial to one's creativity when capturing images from those "impossible" angles. Casio could perhaps pick up a thing or two from Panasonic, who have integrated the High Angle function in their digital compact cameras. This technique enhances the vertical angle of view of the display when held overhead.
Casio Exilim EX-Z1000 review - Recommended!
Casio are keen to increase their market share in the digital camera world, and I believe the current Exilim series of digital cameras will enable them to achieve just that. For now, Casio intend to stick to the compact Exilim series, and will thus not easily be lured onto the path of the digital reflex camera or the hybrid digital camera. The product itself is clear as daylight, and the Casio Exilim EX Z1000 camera takes the number one spot. The camera is equipped with many innovative functions, is economical with its energy, shows an excellent image quality, and is packaged in a high-quality stainless steel housing. In our opinion, the fact that this camera offers 10 Megapixels is not necessarily its main asset; after all, the Casio Exilim EX Z1000 camera already has sufficient potential in itself to seize a market share. Those who are looking for a digital camera, and are open to an abundance of handy and creative functionalities, should definitely take a closer look at the Casio Exilim EX Z1000. Besides the silver edition, a black housing will soon become available.
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