Olympus SP-570UZ Digital Camera Review$449.99
If you feel your inner paparazzo yearning to come out and play, consider the Olympus SP-570UZ with its whopping 20x zoom lens
The 570UZ is a handsomely crafted piece of gear, with not only the basic body shape but also the fit and finish of a digital SLR. While it certainly isn't going to fit into anyone's pocket, it's a bit smaller than the photos here might lead you to expect, measuring 4.7' x 3.3' x 3.4' (118mm x 84mm x 87.5mm) and weighing in at just under a pound (445g) before batteries.
The left side of the camera offers a substantial rubberized grip, extending about an inch from the camera body and nicely sculptured to provide a solid, secure grip. The shutter is positioned on a downward-sloping segment above the grip, along with a small dedicated exposure compensation button. The self-timer lamp / auto focus assist illuminator is positioned between the grip and the camera lens. The flash housing extends nearly an inch over the lens, with the word OLYMPUS embossed in white.
Looks like an SLR, works like a point-and-shoot,
albeit one with a powerful piece of glass up front.
The most prominent component on the back of the camera is the 2.7-inch (69mm) LCD. To the left of the screen is a vertical row of four buttons, controlling (from the top down) Playback mode / Print, Shadow Adjustment / Erase, Menu and Display/ Menu Guide. The icons for the two dual-purpose buttons are oddly placed and hard to read on the black background.
Above the screen is an electronic viewfinder, with a diopter adjustment wheel on the left side. Above the screen and to the right of the viewfinder are two additional buttons, the first of which toggles display between the viewfinder and the LCD, the second controlling Auto exposure / auto focus lock while shooting and continuous shot playback while reviewing images.
At the top of the right side is a sculptured inset panel with a patch of rubber material inset in the middle, providing a nicely designed non-slip thumb grip. Below this are four buttons laid out in a circle, which function both as a four-way controller for menu navigation and as direct access shortcuts to individual controls: from the top moving clockwise, these include a programmable Custom button, flash control, self-timer and macro. In the middle of this section is the OK/Function button. Between the screen and the macro button is the card access lamp.
The thumb rest, with its patch of rubber in the middle,
is perfectly positioned for pointing and pivoting.
Left Side* (5.50) *There are three control buttons on the left side of the camera. At the top is the button that pop up the flash unit. The white slashed-circle mark behind this button indicates the location of the focal plane. Then, on the side of the lens barrel are the drive button, which toggles between drive modes (single-frame, sequential and bracket shooting), and the Auto Focus / Manual Focus slider switch. The lens barrel is surrounded by a textured rubber ring.
Near the back of the left side is a substantial silver loop for connecting the neck strap. Below this is a tight-fitting door protecting connectors for an optional external power supply and the supplied USB / AV cables.
The drive mode button is oddly positioned on the lens barrel.
The right side includes the other neck strap loop. Below this connector is a card cover that slides back and pops out to reveal an xD memory card slot.
*The rubber grip extends right around the side for a nice firm hold.
There's a hot shoe external flash connector behind the pop-up flash. To its right is the mode dial with ten positions: Auto, Program, Aperture-Priority, Shutter-Priority, Manual, My Mode, SCN (scene mode), Guide, Movie Mode and Playback. The power switch is positioned around the mode dial, at the back.
Beside the mode dial is a control dial, used to adjust the on-screen display in playback mode, and exposure compensation settings while shooting.
*The control wheel next to the mode dial makes
settings adjustments fast and easy.*
The battery compartment cover on the left side is protected by a locking latch. It opens by pushing left, revealing spaces for four AA batteries. There's a metal tripod socket positioned in the center of the camera bottom, and at the far right side is a small speaker.
*The metal tripod socket is appropriate for a long-zoom camera
that will benefit from tripod mounting.*