Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Review

Ultra Compact

Picture
Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Ease of Use 8
Features 8
Movie Mode 9
Build Quality8
Colours 8
Photo Quality 8
Style 8
Lowlight 8
Macro 6
Value for Money 7
10 Megapixels
4x Zoom
3 inch LCD Screen
96.9 x 57.6 x 23mm
131g

Overview

The Casio Exilim EX-Z300 is a mid range digital camera. It is just about small enough to fit into a pocket. It has 10 megapixels and a 4x wide angle zoom lens. There are a few extra options that are standard with effects such as colour filters and the ability to adjust sharpness, saturation and contrast.

Why Buy The Casio Exilim EX-Z300

The main attractions include HD quality movies, image stabilisation and ease of use.

Main Features

Megapixels:
Zoom:
LCD Screen:
Dimensions:
Weight:

10
4x
3 inches
96.9 x 57.6 x 23mm
131g

Macro:
HD Movies:
Manual Controls:
Batteries:
Memory Cards:

15cm
Yes
No
Lithium-ion Rechargeable
SD/SDHC

Image Quality - See Sample Images Below

Outdoor Scenic Shots in Good Light

The Exilim EX-Z300 gets off to a good start. It handles the glare from the sun well enough, although some detail is lost from the lightest areas of the boats. The brickwork of the building is showing in sharp focus and focusing is more or less maintained as you move out towards the edges of the photo.

There is not too much to report here. As far as scenic shots go the Exilim EX-Z300 should be able to produce decent photos without hitting the highest levels.

As with the second outdoor shot the camera manages to deliver an acceptable photo when the lens is zoomed into its maximum capacity. Focusing does start to fade in the most distant area of the photo on the right hand side.

I am happy with the levels of sharpness in this photo. The overall standard is better than that achieved by some of the lower cameras in this series. Focusing levels remain high as you move out towards the edges as well.

Portraits

This photo was taken using a white balance setting of shady. This helps to add some extra warmth to the photo and reduce the harshness of the colours. The photo works well and you should have no problem producing standard outdoor portraits with this camera.

With the flash turned on indoors some of the colour is washed out of the photo by the lighting. The light is evenly spread, but other cameras are able to temper the amount of flash light used resulting in more vivid colours.

Although this photo was taken indoors I should point out that the lighting was still bright. So window lit portraits should be good, but don't expect to be able to take great photos without flash once lighting levels fall.

Macro, Colours and Noise

The macro test shot is not a bad effort, but the Exilim EX-Z300 has to be at least 15cm away from the subject before it can focus. Therefore my test shot has been heavily cropped. If one of your main interests is close up shots then you are advised to look elsewhere.

In some of my test shots the colours are not as vivid as I'm used to seeing from other brands. This is not necessarily a bad thing as some people prefer softer colours.

When you increase the ISO settings picture quality starts to show signs of noise, as I would expect it to. The good news is that the colours do not break up, but there are some signs of purple fringing on the edge of reflective objects.

Summary

Aside from the distant macro shot I would say the Exilim EX-Z300 produced a standard set of test shots. Nothing stands out as being poor, but at the same time nothing reaches out and grabs you to say this camera could be exceptional.

See sample images link arrow

Style

The Exilim EX-Z300 is a simple, unfussy digital camera. It is rectangular, with rounded edges. You can buy it in a variety of colours.

Shutter Lag Times

Shutter Lag Rating Par

Single Shot
Five Shots
Single Shot With Flash
Five Shots With Flash
Turn on Time

0.32 seconds
14.63 seconds
1.88 seconds
19.57 seconds
2.78 seconds


Shutter Lag Table link arrow

Ease of Use

Ease of Use - Par As with other Casio Digital Cameras in this series the menus are well laid out and you should be able to find what you are looking for. There are less buttons and controls on the back and top of this camera than on most digital cameras.

Points I Like

Ease of use - HD quality movies

Where it Could Improve

Weak macro mode

Verdict

I managed to get along quite well with the Casio Exilim EX-Z300. It is able to take a decent snapshot in most situations. This camera does not come cheap though. If you like the idea of being able to shoot short HD quality movies you can justify the price tag. Otherwise you might find better value for money elsewhere.

Product Shots

Front View

Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Front View

Back View

Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Back View

Top View

Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Top View

Sample Menus

recording set up

quality playback

Top Rated Cameras in this Category

Canon IXUS 510 HS Rating 86/100

If you are prepared to pay a bit more for extra quality then the Canon IXUS 510 HS is likely to be of interest to you. For a pocket camera picture quality is very good. Add in the impressive set of features including a touch screen and Wi-Fi and you can start to see that you do get more for your money compared to a lot of digital cameras. The power of the lens also gives you plenty of scope for capturing a wide range of photo opportunities. It is true you pay a little extra than with more standard pocket cameras, but if you also include the stylish look of this model there is a lot on offer for the price tag.

Read Review: Canon IXUS 510 HS Review

Canon IXUS 125 HS Rating 86/100

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Canon IXUS 1100 HS Rating 85/100

The Canon IXUS 1100 HS is a very good choice if you are looking for a pocket digital camera with a combination of a longer zoom lens and touch control. Once you get used to the screen and improve your touch accuracy it responds well. Picture quality compares favourably with other pocket cameras. The style and build suggest a bit of extra class too. The IXUS 1100 HS ticks most of the boxes for a camera in this category.

Read Review: Canon IXUS 1100 HS Review

Related Pages

Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Review Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Specification Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Sample Images Casio Exilim EX-Z300 Features Casio Digital Cameras

Review Date

January 2009

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