I admit that I am a digital camera snob. I always carry around 50 pounds of camera equipment; lenses, bodies (camera bodies, I keep the other ones in the basement) and accessories. Even my compact camera is the biggest and most expensive one I could find. Now I find myself holding the 8.1 megapixel wide zoom Casio EX-Z150, a point and shoot of distinction. This camera has CCD image stabilization. That’s true IS (some cameras just increase the shutter speed). This camera does it all, and you don’t have to know anything about taking a picture. While I’m fidgeting with the zillions of controls and parameters on my cameras, you’re snapping away taking quite good pictures with your Casio EX-Z150. And you didn’t miss the abominable snowman.
So what makes this point and shoot different from the others? First off is the wide zoom range. Ever had to keep stepping back to get everyone in the picture until falling over the wall into the ravine? Ever have the flying saucer overhead, but when you zoom in it still looks like a blurry pie plate hanging from a string? Both these problems are solved with the 28 to 112mm (35mm equiv.) 4x zoom range. So, after getting the clear picture of the UFO you say to yourself, ‘Nobody will believe me unless I can get this on YouTube.’ Fortunately for you, the EX-Z150 has a direct to YouTube capture mode, which also captures all the screaming from all the bystanders as they are zapped and turned into zombies.
I have only touched the surface of a treasure trove of cool features. Something I really appreciated is that changing any of the most important settings is only one button away, and you don’t lose the view. If you press the ‘set’ button, all of the available settings appear on the right hand edge of the screen. Scrolling through them shows the available settings, and for those who forget what they mean, it also shows an explanation.
You can’t manually adjust the shutter and aperture (You can adjust over and under exposure by 3 stops. If you don’t know why you would do that, ask your local camera know it all.) Instead there is a feature called Best Shot. Pressing the BS button (my BS doesn’t need a button) brings up a matrix of example photographs. Taking a picture of a majestic vista? Pick the picture of the mountain. Trying to catch the tooth fairy coming into your room at night? Pick the picture of the dark room for high sensitivity. There is even a setting for eBay pictures for when you want to auction off your little brother. If you just want to take pictures, it has an ‘easy mode’ which hides all the other functions and does it all for you. Oddly enough, when you let the camera make all the decisions, it actually makes the right ones more often than you do.
The Casio EX-Z150 feels very solid in your hands. It is a very high quality metal build. And it comes in 5 colors to match your shoes. It also has the latest features we all love such as face detection, multi point focusing, auto flash, and red eye reduction I was very impressed with this camera As a camera snob, that’s a pretty high compliment.
Great Shot: Great zoom range YouTube and eBay capture Easy menu navigation.
Blurry: Pictures are a bit noisy.
Highly recommended for a point and shoot.
The first two pictures are an example of the extremes of the zoom
The pumpkin is my annual biology experiment. I leave it on my front stoop until it
disappearson its own.
Casio EX-Z150 Specifications
Still images: JPEG (Exif Version 2.2, DCF 1.0 standard, DPOF compliant)
Movies: AVI format, Motion JPEG, IMA-ADPCM (monaural)
Audio (Voice Recording): WAV format (monaural)