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Olympus Tough TG-310 review
|DATE REVIEWED: 7th Jun 2011||Add Camera To Comparison Chart|
|Camera Type||Compact||Shutter Speeds||4 - 1/2000 sec|
|RRP||£200||ISO Range||80 - 1600|
|Megapixels||14||Focal Length||28 - 102mm|
|Weight||155g||Aperture||f3.5 - 5.1|
|Dimensions||96 x 63 x 22mm (WxHxD)||Focus Distance||2cm - inf|
|LCD Size||2.7 inches||Zoom (Opt)||3.6x|
|Zoom (Dig)||4x||Storage||SD / SDHC / SDXC|
|Max Resolution||4288 x 3216||Battery Type||Li-Ion|
When a product boldly claims to be ‘tough’ you’ve no option but to put that theory to the test. Olympus’s latest Tough camera is the TG-310, a budget-friendly compact for the everyday fun-seeking photographer.
Right from the start, you can see that this little point-and-click means business. Its stylish yet sturdy casing, the rubber button and back plate, and the thick, lockable SD card/battery slot door all reassure you that it can pack a punch.
Nevertheless, looks can be deceiving, so we decided to take it snowboarding for a week to test its credentials. It must be said, the TG-310 handled it well. From the freezing conditions – which went down to -8ºC – the Tough captured the action with ease.?
Throughout the holiday we kept it in a standard, small, lightly padded case, as you would with any camera, yet it never faltered under the many accidental – but frequent – slams and falls on the slopes. While we didn’t get a chance to immerse it fully in water, it was nice not to have to worry about snow or wet gloves affecting proceedings. In fact, one of the elements that caused more trouble than the snow was sunshine – the glare on the LCD from the sun made it difficult to see our pictures sometimes.
Transferring the images is a simple task, uploading them to the computer via the TG-310’s high-speed USB connection cable. Once the shots were on there, though, we discovered that the quality of the images wasn’t as great as we’d initially hoped. Landscape shots look great at a glance, but if you look closer you’ll see a loss of detail around things like the edges of the mountains and trees. Still, the TG-310’s recommended retail price is only £180, so it’s inevitable that some sacrifices have to be made. Thankfully, it isn’t as noticeable in close-up and portrait shots, and colour representation is very good.
If you’re feeling a little adventurous with your scenes, you might like to try Olympus’s ‘Magic filters’. Options such as ‘punk’, ‘pinhole’, ‘watercolour’ and more mean that you can add a brand new twist to your images. The results themselves are okay, but they take a few goes to find the best one to suit the scene. Overall, the options are quite gimmicky and it’s unlikely many people will use them very often. You might be better off tweaking the original image in software like Photoshop or iPhoto.
One feature we did find intriguing was the new 3D function that Olympus has added. You select it like any other scene mode and snap your picture in the same way, but you’ll then have to line the shot up again to take another picture. We found this function really only suitable for shooting still objects, which was a shame as we were keen on capturing a snowboarder coming towards us. As you’d expect, once you’ve got your 3D pictures they’re only viewable on a 3DTV or monitor – so the function won’t be suitable for all camera owners. While we welcome advances in technology, a better optical zoom would have been preferable to a 3D function.
Despite this, the TG-310 is still a great camera. Yes the zoom buttons aren’t as smooth as a dial for the same purpose would be, and the picture quality isn’t as top-notch as we’d like, but this is a casual camera at an affordable price. Its excellent build quality means that it’s as at home by the pool as it is by the piste and, unlike the rest of your gadgets, you can chuck it into a pocket or a bag without having to worry that it’ll get damaged.
The TG-310 is, as its full name suggests, tough. Overall its an excellent all-rounder that combines reasonable picture quality and superb value for money
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|The TG-310 is, as its full name suggests, tough. Overall its an excellent all-rounder that combines reasonable picture quality and superb value for money|
Troy is a keen amateur photographer with a passion for all things camera related. He enjoys exploring new styles of photography, and is always keen to take on a new challenge. Troy is a new face here at DCE and is ready to take on the latest releases in the camera world.
|Total Camera Reviews||15|
|Average Camera Rating||4.3|
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