Pros Small, Great Video, Compact, oh...and LENS does not come out - WHAT A PLUS (ie. no moving parts), some great features - check kodaks site on demo of camera
Cons slight noise on zoom during video, KodakEasyShare needs to allow video upload.
Summary I purchased the V550 and at 29 days, the screen gave in - I was traveling and contacted Kodak (I bought directly from their online store) and let them know. On my return after 43 days, they still went ahead and upheld the policy of return. I was so happy with this service, that I decided to try the V570 that has just been released. Oh man, what a beautiful camera - it is even smaller than the v550 but with the wide lens AND the fact that there is no moving parts on the lens (ie. it does not extend, and that it has an automatic lens cover is just awesome. How this got only a 7.2 review by CNET beats me. If you zoom back it automatically switches to the wide angle lens. With great video (as good as the V550 video (which was awesome). I bought the Kodak offered bundle which included the 512 mb card AND A HARD MAGENTIC SNAP CASE - A MUST - especially given the problem i had with the screen on the v550. the case is sleak as well. A few things they need to improve: 1. stop using Quicktime proprietary video and go to Mpeg or other supported ones. 2. allow videos to be uploaded to the Kodak Gallery (they have placed a restriction on the size of files that can be uploaded) which is a real nuisance since the camera supports pics and videos and why not allow both to be uploaded - espc. having family on the other coast - and frankly videos are so good I just want to share them. 3. the video does pick up slight noise when zooming (much quieter though than the V550) - but frankly if you want just expert video, then go out and buy a video camera not a combo.
Pros Compact size, Wide Angle shots
Cons Grainy LCD, Weak Flash, Hard to use zoom
Summary The dual lens is nothing but a bait and switch. I was pretty excited about the camera at first, until I went home with one and took it through the paces.
First, here's what I liked:
- Close proximity wide angle shots (definite plus)
And here's what I didn't like:
- The LCD is grainy... something that seems to be quite common with Kodak cameras
- If you use the zoom while recording a movie, you'll be able to distinctly hear it, regardless of the noise in the movie.
- The skip from the wide angle lens to the regular one while zooming is strange - catches you off guard at first, but there's a setting for this
- The door that secures the SD Card is so flimsy, and I cannot for the life of me understand how that was left like that in the final design
- The flash is a little on the weak end
- The zoom button is soo hard to use, leading to my next point
- It is so easy to mistakenly put your finger in front of the lens while taking a photo
- The battery life is very questionable at this point and only further testing can yield different results
- The photos are not so great, especially with the 23mm where the distortion is a little more on the higher end, even if this is common with such small lenses.
I feel bad coming down so hard on this camera considering the new innovation, but it is what it is. I say wait for version 2 (if any) of this type of camera.
Pros Easy to use, Good image quality, Fast response,
Cons Sometimes noisy image, only 32mb memory built in.
Summary The price tag is a little high on this camera, but it's sleek and original design caught my eye immediately. It takes a great picture and the many modes provide enough versatility for the average snapshot taker. Quick to turn on, really simple to use and great for impressing your friends.
The only disadvantages for me were the built in memory SD card at 32mb and the none existant
standard USB port. The docking tray provided makes it easy enough to tranfer images, but you must always use it and install the software that comes with. Options would be to buy a new memory card and use a card reader, or simply put up with the docking tray.
Pros Super Wide Angle Lens, Easy to use, loads of useful scene functions, in camera stitching
Cons proprietary batteries, camera does not remember settings
Summary I originally bought this camera because of the super wide angle lens, the panoramic feature, and the size. My Z740 is simply too big to carry around with me. I can drop this camera into my pocket and carry it with me. I also like the fact that the lenses don't protrude from the camera body. This makes it very easy to pull the camera out, turn it on, take a picture, turn it off, and repocket it.
There have been some knocks against the camera for its lack of manual controls, but that is simply not it focus. It is a point and shoot camera and it works very well when used that way.
I do like the blur warning when reviewing pictures, but wish it would tell me the shutter speed or warn me that a picture is likely to blur before I take the picture.
I have also noticed that when using the panorama feature, you need to find definite objects to line up on or you can loose track of where the pictures are suppose to meet. I've wound up with some very interesting pictures because of that. All in all, the panorama feature is very nice given that it is all done in camera, and it is a little tricky to master, but produces spectacular images when done right.
The only thing I don't like about the camera is its proprietary batteries, you can't just buy rechargables and go, you have to order special batteries. I will add that the battery will take a good number of pictures on one charge, enough that the average user will probably not find it a problem. But given the camera's size, I don't really see how they could have fit standard batteries in it.
So overall, for casual point and shoot picture taker it might be the perfect camera, but it will not, nor was designed to, satisfy all the needs of more advanced photographers. It is definitely a great camera in its own right, certainly something more than a gimick.
Pros size, panoramic views
Cons battery charging
Summary I was one of the lucky winners of this product at CES. Fell in love with it straight away. Took lots of super photos at the show (seemed difficult to take a bad one) and on the Las Vegas strip. It didn't seem as good however at the night shots. The camera itself had a really nice feel to it and looks good. It was very easy to use. I liked the fact that it didn't have too many buttons! The menu was easy to follow. When the camera was charged, I was up and running taking great photos within 20 mins.
My only really complaint would be the battery charging. I put the battery in the wrong way (easy to do) and was not able to determine from the LEDs as to whether it was charging or not. It seemed the only way to know was to wait an hour to see if the second LED went on (which it didn't .... frustration!).
But easy come, easy go. I left this down in a restaurant and returned 20 minutes later to find it had disappeared. Was devasted as this camera felt good. Waiting anxiously for it to arrive in Europe!