Olympus Tough 8010 rugged camera
Takes the knocks and the shots
The standard continuous mode is barely any better, shooting at a rate of one full-res shot every three seconds, or four shots in 11 seconds. There's a high-speed continuous mode as well, which shot just over two frames per second, but at the cost of reducing the resolution to 3Mp.
Compromises are inevitable, but you'll still get a shot whatever the weather
Annoyingly – and somewhat surprisingly given the 8010's top-end pricing – there's no manual mode at all. The only way to make adjustments is to use the exposure compensation control. There's no way to directly control aperture or shutter speed, and while point-n-shoot types might appreciate the simplicity, more advanced users will want more control. Likewise, there's no manual white balance mode. Insteas it features a total of six white balance options, including three fluorescent modes, covers most of the bases, but a fully manual mode will be appreciated by some.
Summing up the Olympus 8010 is difficult. It's hard to quantify exactly how tough it is - its specifications and my experience during testing suggests it's hardier than most compact cameras - if you're headed into the wilderness and need an utterly dependable camera the Tough 8010 should survive longer than most.
However, the high price puts it in direct competition with the likes of the excellent Canon S90, which is faster, sharper and, though not waterproof, is an undeniably tough-feeling piece of kit. Given the Olympus 8010’s price, fair image quality and occasionally irritating lack of urgency, you’re left with its raison d’être, namely, a robust camera to take with you when you need to be absolutely sure your equipment will work. ®
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