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Casio Exilim EX-10: Features-packed compact camera

Published on Apr 21, 2014 3:05 AM
 
Casio Exilim EX-10.

The Exilim EX-10 signals Casio's entry into the prosumer digital compact camera market and the maker of the G-Shock watch has packed plenty of features into it.

One major feature is its Intelligent Bracketing mode. It allows you to shoot the same scene with two different parameters. For example, shooting with white balance and brightness will give you eight shots with different combinations plus one normal shot.

There is a slight lag of 1sec after the camera fires nine shots continuously before you can use the camera again. Other than that, it works as advertised.

As with many new Exilim cameras, the focus is on the self-portrait or selfie. Other than the Power button on top of the camera, you can switch the camera on by just flipping up the touchscreen display. There is even a front shutter release.

The display can be tilted upwards to 180 degrees. Doing so reveals a flip stand on the rear of the camera. Pull it out and you can put the camera on a flat surface for a group selfie.

This camera also has a hands-free mode. In other words, you just need to press the shutter release button, step back, wave and the camera will take a photo 2sec after it detects the wave.

You can also use the Make-up mode to smoothen the skin of your face faster than any beauty cream. Just adjust the intensity of the Make-up mode accordingly, take a selfie and be surprised at how smooth your skin looks.

The EX-10 build is solid and sturdy, thanks to its durable die-cast magnesium body. Although the grip is nothing more than a small line of plastic on the body's front, it accommodates all my fingers and is comfortable to hold.

With an aperture ring in front and a wheel dial at its rear, handling is great. The Mode dial on top of the camera even has the Intelligent Bracketing and Time-Lapse modes for easy switching.

A nice touch is the inclusion of the auto lens cap, which opens and closes when the lens protrudes and retracts respectively - you will not lose a lens cap again.

This camera is quite fast, taking only 1.1sec to power up, while shutting down takes about 2.1sec. Using an SDHC card rated at 10MB per second, it is able to shoot 30 JPEG frames in 0.9sec.

Autofocusing (AF) is almost instantaneous and accurate in brightly lit conditions. In dim lighting, the AF takes only around 1.2sec to lock onto a focus with the help of an AF assist light. Its peers usually take around 2-3sec to do so.

Image quality, though, is a mixed bag. Images shot with the EX-10 have vivid colours with nice skin tones, especially if you increase the Make-up mode's intensity.

However, noise artefacts are noticeable at ISO 400, whereas its competitors exhibit such behaviour only at ISO 800.

I feel a bigger image sensor, such as a 1-inch sensor, should have been used in the EX-10 to avoid this problem. This is especially so given its high price tag.

Its videos are sharp and crisp. Wind and ambient audio is reduced to a minimum, but you can hear the zooming and AF of the lens readily.

Battery life is quite good. While most compact cameras stop at around 300 still images on a full charge, the EX-10 takes around 450 still images.

  • The Casio Exilim EX-10 is quite an amazing camera with its myriad of useful selfie features, nice build, good handling and long battery life. But it is expensive, and the image quality could be better.

trevtan@sph.com.sg

Background story

TECH SPECS

Price: $1,099

Image sensor: 12-megapixel 1/1.7-inch CMOS

Lens: 28-112mm f/1.8-f/2.5

Screen: 3.5-inch tiltable LCD with 921,000 dots

Sensitivity: ISO 80 to 12,800

Shooting speed: Up to 30 frames per second

Weight: 384g (body with battery and memory card)


RATING

Features: 5/5

Design: 4/5

Performance: 3/5

Value for money: 2/5

Battery life: 5/5

Overall: 4/5

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