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Olympus XZ1 review

Here is a mini review of the compact digital camera the Olympus XZ1.

I was looking for a compact take anywhere camera with RAW and manual controls. Options included the Canon G12, or Ricoh GR series or a Fuji X10. Well the G12 is nice buy bulky and heavy, you may as well get a mirrorless model. The Ricoh are expensive and fixed lenses, very nice build quality and feel though.

The other contender was the new Fuji X10 which is superb, a bit more expensive but a great product. Only problem is the reports of white circles in many images from flare spots. When Fui fix that and drop the price a bit they have a winner.

That left the Olympus XZ1, which is a good deal right now and has a cash back offer as well. (Got mine from Amazon.) Well just done a few shoots so far and I am delighted with this camera. Its low light response is excellent due to the relatively large lens and f1.8 aperture. The control ring on the front sets either aperture or shutter speed depending on setting and it work brilliantly. The LCD screen is also very sharp and high resolution, I would like the optional electronic viewfinder but its a bit pricy (£180). I may be tempted as it would make this a great street camera.

The image quality is basically as good as my 3 year old Canon 450 DSLR with a good lens. Which for a compact camera is amazing. The focus speed is excellent and the camera feels light but well made. I dont like the control dial on top though as too small and easily turned. Will be my main travel camera from now on.

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