Olympus CAMEDIA D-545 Zoom 4.0 MP Digital Camera - Silver
8 consumer reviews
Average Product Rating:
A nice cheap point-and-shoot
Jul 22, 2005 (Updated Apr 24, 2006)
Review by radiov8
Rated a Helpful Review
I bought this camera new from a local electronics place for about 180 dollars. I also bought a 256mb xD card (absolutely required, you won't get by with the internal memory) and rechargeable batteries, in hindsight extremely helpful buy.
Recommend this product?
Generally the pictures taken look very good, but afterward you'll need to zoom into them to make sure they're not blurry. Normally it takes more than one shot before I'm satisfied with the picture.
In lower light, this thing has to be perfectly still or else the shots are extremely blurry. Even with a tripod or a completely steady hand, the colors are often slightly or even noticeably off in night shots. However, the stills it takes in the sunlight are almost all spectacular. I took this camera on a boat on the Rhine, and the shots it took were breathtaking when I went back and viewed them.
The placement of the flash is counter-intuitive: I've covered it with my finger by accident more than once, and it usually ruins the picture by lighting it unevenly, or making a halo where the light reflected off my finger. Movie mode on this and most other point-and-shoot cameras is almost completely useless, since there's no audio.
I took this camera with me on a one-month trip to Germany. Over that time, I took more than more than 4000 pictures. I kept about 2000 of them, but I was really picky and shot most of them more than once. I had three sets of 2 AA rechargeables, and managed to get a complicated set of adapters to work with the charger I had. The system worked well- use one set one day and have at least one of the other two sets in my pocket in case I ran out. I don't think I ever ran out of battery power for the first three weeks of the trip. In Berlin, unfortunately, I did end up running out of space on the memory card to the point where in the last couple of days I was forced to reduce the quality to the lowest setting. I took this camera with me into a mosh pit at the Live 8 concert there, and dropped it by accident while Finch was playing. Everyone was jumping up and down. I didn't see it for 10 seconds, and afterward I saw it laying on the ground with the battery compartment open- batteries strewn about- and the lens still out. I don't know what happened to it in that time, but I do know that it escaped with only a couple of scratches.
They don't tell you in the features list that this has no optical viewfinder, but this should be apparent if you take a close look at the camera's picture before buying it. One thing that disappointed me was that in order to use the panorama setting, you need an Olympus brand xD card. I have a Fujifilm card, so this feature is unavailable to me.
Having taken more than 2000 pictures with it in the last two months, I'd say it's a very decent camera for the money.
As an update to this review- I recently purchased a Canon Digital Rebel off of eBay, and that camera blows this one out of the water in many respects. It's just not even in the same class. The only thing I miss now about the D-545 is its extreme portability, which I had definitely taken for granted throughout the trip. If there's one camera I'd like to have in my pocket as a backup though, it's definitely this one.
Oh, and one last thing: I'm a little dismayed by the fact that the 545 uses either a proprietary or uncommon USB end. It's not a showstopper (unless you lose it), but it would have been a lot nicer to have been able to use my regular mini ends with this camera so I wouldn't have to keep switching around the cables each time I need to dump photos from camera to computer.
Amount Paid (US$): 180
This Camera is a Good Choice if You Want Something... Easy Enough for Anyone to Use
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