56 of 60 people found the following review helpful
J. A. Edwards
- Published on Amazon.com
I've had my EX-FS10 for a couple of weeks now and feel qualified to make an initial review of it.
The overall feature set is very impressive, considering its size and shape. The actual implementation of some features is a bit off though.
* Very small -- smaller than I expected, and I was expecting small. I like to carry a camera with me 24/7 and insist on one that takes full motion video, etc. The small size, HD video features, and rapid shoot features of the FS10 make it perfect for me.
* The slow-motion features are VERY cool. I have been having a lot of fun, often with my young niece & nephew, videoing all kinds of simple things and watching their slo-mo details in playback. Granted, you lose resolution the slower you go but considering this feature isn't available at all in most (any?) other pocket cameras, I'm willing to accept this.
* Images captured under even moderately low light conditions are very grainy and noisy. This is looking to be a big problem! You've got 9MP but when you look at them even a little bit closely you'll see a LOT of multi-color sensor noise/grain. Using the flash helps but I don't always want to use the flash. My MUCH older and cheaper digital cameras seem to do better in these same dark conditions! Perhaps I need to explore the custom settings some more BUT, per my next note, all of your custom settings seem to revert back to defaults every time you turn the camera off.
* The camera forgets all(?) of your custom settings when it is turned off and returns to default settings when turned back on. I think most of the problems I am reporting here could be minimized by tuning the camera's settings to my particular likings and personal shooting styles. But having to customize my settings, and remembering to even DO this, every time I turn the camera on is a MAJOR hassle. Example: I prefer to disable the flash/auto-flash and manage lighting myself, but every time I turn the camera back on, the flash will go off if the lighting conditions are even slightly darkish unless I remember to explicitly disable the flash again (and again and again).
* Auto-focus for video is sloppy. It goes in and out of focus even when videoing environments which are pretty much totally "at infinity". I have resorted to always manually focusing to infinity if my subject is more than about 4' away; perhaps I need to try some of the other auto-focusing schemes -- unfortunately the fact that the camera forgets custom settings every time it is turned off makes the use of other focusing schemes or using fixed focus very inconvenient.
* Battery charging requires the battery to be removed and inserted into a separate charger. My other, older/simpler/cheaper cameras generally let me charge via the USB port -- I would often simply leave these old cameras plugged in after downloading images to "top off" the battery. Having to pop the battery out is a total hassle! Also, the hardware associated with this battery access seems a bit flimsy to me...
* The cover over the USB port is poorly implemented. Rather than popping out the SD card, I prefer to download pix/vid from the camera via the USB port. Note first of all that the camera's jack is NOT the standard small USB port that you usually (always?) see -- it is a slightly smaller version that I'd never seen before. I don't know if it is custom to the Casio brand or what -- I hope not. The plastic cover over the camera's USB port is on a thin plastic leash but this leash is SOOO short that it is EXTREMELY difficult to hold the cover out of the way and get the USB cable plugged in. It is such a struggle to plug in the cable that I suspect/fear that it won't be long before the little plastic leash for the USB port cover breaks.
Over all I have mixed feelings about this camera. This is my first Casio camera. So far I am less than thrilled with some problems I've discovered. Under OPTIMAL conditions, the automated settings seem to work well and produce great pictures and HD video. If you deviate from OPTIMAL conditions at all, the automated settings produce mediocre results at best; and any custom settings are consistently forgotten between power-up's.
I'm HOPING that I'll either learn/discover some methods on this new camera to address my problems OR that a firmware upgrade will be released that fixes them. Fingers crossed.
***UPDATE*** Nov. 15, 2010 -- The 4-digit part of the image name on my Casio Exilim camera has rolled over. I have apparently taken over 10,000 pix/vid's on it over the last 1 year, 8 months. That works out to an AVERAGE of 16+ pictures/videos EACH AND EVERY DAY. Unfortunately, despite all the constant use, I have decided that I really dislike this camera -- it simply has too many ergonomic, design, and workflow problems. My frugality compels me to keep it until I wear it out; it has taken a beating (including being dropped) during my ownership and it still works just fine -- I have to give it props for being sturdy.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
David Pogue, the NY Times tech reviewer, effused about Casio's new cameras, so I tried out the smaller version. The main attractions for me were the slo-mo movies and high-speed "still" shooting. Both were tough to figure out initially because the printed manual covers little more than turning the camera on, and the CD manual is large and opaque and gives little indication where those key features are to be found.
Finally figuring out most of it, I am particularly fond of Slow Motion View, which is great when you're waiting for your granddaughter to kick the soccer goal, the hummingbird to feed on your flowers, or the salmon to jump up the waterfall. You know, the kind of shot you always miss because the camera shutter was too slow. With this Casio, you just hold the shutter button halfway down and the camera will start recording in a buffer up to three seconds of 10 to 30 frames-per second photos at 6 megapixels (NOT the camera's full 9). The buffer doesn't fill up your SD card, but stays in the camera memory until you push the shutter button all the way down. At that point, you've captured up to 30 still pics of what just happened in the last few seconds. Later on (or immediately, if you want), you can pick out the best one or two freeze-frame shots of that rare event.
Haven't tried the High Speed Night Scene function or the Multi-Motion Image Procedure, but I like the idea behind each of them. The Night Scene takes a fast series of stills of a night scene, any one of which might be underexposed, and then combines them to give a single shot with vivid colors and lighting. Multi-Motion takes a series of shots of a moving object -- like a skier getting air -- and places several images of that object against a stationary background.
I like the camera and will continue to explore its many features, especially for taking pics of my fast-moving granddaughters.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
I had been very happy with my previous Casio Exilim camera, so I thought that I would love this upgrade. Unfortunately, Casio has taken a few steps backwards with this camera. I would not recommend it.
1) The battery life is horrible. I haven't counted the number of photos or videos per charge, but it is very low. I took this camera to the Zoo and the battery was dead by the afternoon after maybe a 40 photos and a few short videos. My previous Casio camera would last for several days between charges.
2) To charge the battery, you must remove it from the camera and put it into a separate charger. Removing the battery is a little tricky for people with big fingers. My previous Casio could charge the battery without removing it.
3) The high-speed video is a neat gimmick, but it isn't practical in real life for two reasons. First, the resolution is drastically reduced. At the highest speed, the video is a very thin sliver that is so small, you can almost not see what is going on. Second, the high speed video is very grainy and requires a ton of light. There is no way that you can get a usable high-speed video indoors. It's just too dark.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
If you are thinking about buying this camera, it's probably because of one major thing: the high speed burst/movie mode (an extremely cool feature that, at this time, isn't found on many cameras... and this one is definitely the smallest and most portable right now).
This functionality branches off into 3 very unique modes:
1) a fast 30 frame per second high speed burst shot that lets you keep all, some, or none of the shots you take while holding down the shutter button.
2) a slow motion button that literally slows down the image of your target on the LCD screen and allows you to snap the exact moment you want.
3) a high speed movie mode that lets you capture up to 1000 frames per second for super-slow motion movies.
These functions sold me, and were the main reason I wanted the camera. I have to say that they are slightly disappointing after working with them for a little over a month. All of the slow motion modes are completely unusable under even the slightest of low light conditions. Because of this, I can't use any of these modes indoors at all. Anything shot without the flash comes out as a dark, grainy mess. With regards to the high speed movies, this should really have been labeled as a 210 fps or maybe 420 fps movie mode, because 1000 fps is completely unwatchable. It shoots at an extremely low resolution and requires an immense amount of light to even show up.
Image quality for normal shots is slightly below average. Photos usually come out as very grainy and again require a lot of light. Flash photos come out decent. I seem to have much better luck from other cameras I've owned from Canon and Sony for any kind of indoor photography. The one area the ex-fs10 does seem to work well with is some still low-light photographs. A feature called high speed nightscene uses a method of taking several highspeed photographs at once and melding them into one photo to produce a better photo than you would get under normal circumstances. This prevents a lot of the blur you normally get when using higher ISO's during low light conditions. The same principle is also used in an anti-shake best shot mode, which works reasonably well.
The high definition (720p) movie mode is a nice feature, but also tends to come out grainy in low-light conditions, and again is virtually unusable indoors. It has extreme difficulty staying focused and often tends to go in and out of focus.
As for size and quality of build: The camera is extremely small and light, and will easily fit in medium-sized pockets. It also has a very sturdy and nice feel to it.
Overall, I still think the only reason to buy this camera is if you are extremely interested in the slow-motion modes. They are great if you want to capture fast paced action under high-light conditions (outdoors); however, they severely suffer under low-light conditions. If you are worried about image quality, I'd probably look elsewhere though.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
- Published on Amazon.com
I use this camera mostly to film skateboarding. in skateboarding, you do your tricks in less than a second, and with my old camera I never saw what was actually going on. now I do my trick and have a 10 second clip Instantly no editig involved!! it also takes still frames with stunning quality, extremely quickly. at this price, you can't say no.
however, you can only record for about 10 seconds (of real time recording, that's about a minute of slo motion) before it starts to lower the frame rate. also the 1000 fps and 420 fps have a bad quality, not so bad on 420, but pretty bad. make sure you film high speed with a lot of light too, natural light works better than artificial. the HD setting has a low frame rate.
that isn't a downside for me, but it can get annoying at times
the price is great too, this is a beautiful camera.