Feeds
75%
Olympus Tough 8010

Olympus Tough 8010 rugged camera

Takes the knocks and the shots

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Purple fringing aside, the 8010 produced a fair show over the course of testing. The images produced were fairly soft, particularly towards the corners, but not disastrously so, and the 8010 captured a decent amount of detail. There was a tendency to underexpose by up to a stop, but exposure compensation control is at least available directly from the 8010's menu.

Olympus Tough 8010

For submerged shots the camera features underwater scene modes

Naturally there are umpteen scene modes available (19 for those counting), including two for underwater photography and two snow modes, as well as a few stylish "magic" filters, which add trendy effects such as a pinhole, heavily-vignetted effect and a mock fisheye. One mode we came back to more frequently was the super macro mode, which allows incredibly close focussing (around 1cm) at the lens's widest focal length.

The inclusion of a 720p, MPEG4 video mode is useful, as is the fact that the optical zoom remains functional while recording. Unfortunately, while video quality is good, the 8010 proved remarkably adept at picking up handling noise. Our sample also suffered from an annoying clicking noise while the zoom was in action, meaning it’s best to have your focal length sorted out before you start recording.

As our test video shows, you’ll need pretty good underwater visibility to produce anything worth watching, although the 8010 would be a decent pick as a snorkelling companion, as long as you bear in mind that it doesn’t have neutral buoyancy, and hence will sink if you let go of it.

The 8010's ISO can be set as high as 1600 but, as is generally the case with compacts, it is barely usable at that setting. Images begin to show signs of noise and softness at ISO 400 but remain reasonable; by ISO 800 the softness was very pronounced, and there's little reason to venture as far as ISO 1600 - use a tripod, and try to ignore the incongruity of a toughened camera offering only a plastic tripod thread.

Olympus Tough 8010

Not the niftiest to navigate and you'll need to be content with just auto modes

In use, navigation and configuration was rather frustrating. The menu system makes sense, but is laggy - annoying if you only want to make a quick change to the camera's white balance or exposure compensation. The Olympus splash screen when you switch on the camera can be disabled, but the time to first picture was still around four seconds in our tests, as was the delay between shots.

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Next page: Verdict

More from The Register

next story
4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles
Have your say with Ofcom now, before Freeview becomes Feeview
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
You didn't get the MeMO? Asus Pad 7 Android tab is ... not bad
Really, er, stands out among cheapie 7-inchers
Apple winks at parents: C'mon, get your kid a tweaked Macbook Pro
Cheapest models given new processors, more RAM
YES, iPhones ARE getting slower with each new release of iOS
Old hardware doesn't get any faster with new software
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Nintend-OH NO! Sorry, Mario – your profits are in another castle
Red-hatted mascot, red-colored logo, red-stained finance books
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Maximize storage efficiency across the enterprise
The HP StoreOnce backup solution offers highly flexible, centrally managed, and highly efficient data protection for any enterprise.