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Kodak EASYSHARE C340 5.0 MP Digital Camera - Silver
(26 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating:
Kodak EasyShare C340 5-Megapixel Digital Camera - Inexpensive and Easy to Use
Oct 27, 2005 (Updated Dec 30, 2005)
Review by dkozin
Rated a Very Helpful Review
After using the Kodak EasyShare CX7430, I got the 5-Megapixel Kodak EasyShare C340 for only $140. And I have to say that I like the C340 better and not only because of its higher resolution.
Recommend this product?
What is Kodak EasyShare C340
The Kodak EasyShare C340 is a 5-Megapixel compact digital camera with a 1.6-inch LCD screen, optical zooming viewfinder, Kodak Retinar aspheric all-glass lens with 3x optical zoom (34-102 mm equivalent) powered by 2 AA batteries. The aperture range is f/2.7-5.2 at wide angle, f/4.6-8.7 at telephoto.
The camera has an orientation sensor that rotates images automatically, features shutter speed range of 1/1,400-4 sec, ISO range of 80-400 (80-160 in Auto mode) and records images or movies on its internal 16 MB of memory or on SD (Secure Digital) or MMC (MultiMedia) memory cards.
The pictures of the Kodak EasyShare C340 and the sample photos taken with it are available at the address below:
You can copy and paste the above address into your browser's address area.
Although the camera is somewhat similar to the 4-Megapixel CX7430, it is a substantial improvement. Once the camera arrived, I inserted my SD memory card and a couple of rechargeable NiMH batteries and discovered that the LCD screen of the C340 works in the same manner as in other cameras from the beginning, whereas in the CX7430 I had to go into the menu system and enable "Live View" feature.
The C340 is turned on by rotating the mode wheel on the top deck from the OFF position into one of the others, e.g. AUTO. The camera is faster to power on and off than the CX7430 and zooms faster as well. It seems to have slightly better build quality too.
Controls and Ergonomics
The camera has slightly unconventional shape with a handgrip that looks good but could have been shaped better for ergonomic purposes. The camera has its major controls within easy reach. The buttons on the rear panel are well arranged. The menu control is much better than that of the CX7430.
The C340 has a mode selection wheel on the top deck to select the shooting mode and to turn the camera on or off as well. The wheel is easy to rotate. The shutter release button is located in the middle of it.
The camera has an exposed DC power port on the side, but the memory card and USB ports are covered by a hinged rigid plastic door on the other side. The bottom has a battery compartment door and a connector for optional EasyShare docking stations as well as a tripod mount. The battery compartment door is sturdy and the battery polarity is marked well.
The tactile response of the controls is good and the buttons are well-arranged.
The camera power-up takes about 4 seconds and power-off takes about 2. Zooming from wide angle to telephoto takes less than 2 seconds and feels fast.
The auto-focus is quite fast too and can focus in under a second, even in dimly-lit conditions. The camera shows you where it focused by displaying green square brackets, but it does not make any sounds to indicate that the focus was obtained.
The shutter lag is very short, almost unnoticeable. The camera can take photos at about 2-second intervals, which is pretty good.
The camera has a small 1.6-inch LCD that goes dark after the picture is taken, which may be inconvenient if you want to take photos in rapid succession. The screen increases brightness in low light (gains-up).
The C340 produces good 5-Megapixel photos overall, but the JPEG compression level seems to be too high. The photos feature good colors, are generally sharp and contrasty. But they have slight fuzziness at the object edges and some JPEG artifacts. If you are printing 6x4 or 5x7 photos, this will be invisible, but if you want to crop extensively or print larger formats, you might be able to see these imperfections.
The lens of the camera shows some chromatic aberration close to the edge of the frame in areas of high contrast, but not too much of it. Overall, the photos are sharp for smaller prints but seem to be a little soft when viewed pixel-per-pixel on the computer screen or printed in large format.
Just as majority of compact digital cameras, the noise is a function of the ISO and gets bad at ISO 400. The automatic ISO setting uses the range of 80-160, which keeps noise low. But the photos at ISO 400 are only usable at print size of 6x4 inches.
The camera has a familiar Kodak menu system that is very easy to use. But the menus are not the most efficient and are you can only navigate them slow. The relatively small LCD screen and the large icons do not let you see many menu choices at the same time.
For an inexpensive camera with not much manual control, the menus are well-suited.
Ease of Use
Inexpensive Kodak cameras as usually easy to use and this model is not an exception. The C340 is very easy to use, especially in its Auto mode, where you just point and shoot. It also has clearly labeled scene modes on its mode wheel, including Portrait, Landscape, Macro, Sports and Video as well as SCN. You turn the camera on by rotating the mode wheel from the OFF position to Auto or another mode you which to engage. You rotate it to OFF to turn the camera off.
The buttons on the back panel and top deck are clearly marked and well-arranged.
The camera is sturdy and well-built overall. The materials it is made of are not up to the standards of the Japanese competition, but it is sturdy.
The camera uses 2 AA batteries. I used my rechargeable NiMH batteries and took about 60 pictures without seeing the low battery warning.
The flash is pretty typical and has decent range (about 10-12 feet) and power.
The camera is a relatively good value. I bought my camera for only $140, which is rather cheap for a 5-Megapixel camera.
The Kodak EasyShare C340 is an inexpensive 5-Megapixel camera that is easy to use and produces good photos for print sizes up to 5x7 and occasionally 10x8. It uses AA 2 batteries and inexpensive SD memory. It is inexpensive too. I recommend it if you do not need manual control or intend on making enlargements exceeding 8x10.
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Amount Paid (US$): 140
This Camera is a Good Choice if You Want Something... Easy Enough for Anyone to Use
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