Kodak C875 Review

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Kodak Easyshare C875

Steve's Conclusion

Kodak's new EASYSHARE C875 succeeds in giving the consumer a well rounded, point-and-shoot camera that cuts through the gimmicks, by producing good pictures with plenty of advanced controls. The C875 offers some high-end features like a 8-megapixel imager, 5x optical zoom lens, Kodak Perfect Touch and Color Science technology, 640x480 MPEG-4 movie mode with audio as well as a large and bright 2.5-inch LCD display. Designed more for those just entering the digital world with various fully automatic exposure modes, also offering the novice user both Program and Manual modes for a bit more control over the exposure process.

Like it's predecessor the C663 from last year, the C875 has good ergonomics. Having a beefier body offers a good handgrip for a compact camera . Controls on the camera's body are well positioned and easy to find with your fingers. The large 2.5-inch LCD is easy to see, works well outdoors, and gains up in darker indoor lighting. I did miss the optical viewfinder in previous Easyshare models for working in extreme lighting conditions.

With exception of the start up time, shooting performance was very good. Power up to first image captured measured a reasonable 2.5 seconds. However, Shutter lag measured less than 1/10 of a second when pre-focused and only 3/10 of a second including autofocus. When shooting a sequence of images in single exposure mode, the shot to shot delay averaged 1.5 seconds without using the flash and between 1.8 - 2.4 seconds with the flash on, depending on subject distance, focal length, and battery life.

The C875 provides 2 modes of continuous shooting, First Burst and Last Burst. First Burst will capture 5 images in 2.5 seconds, stopping at the 5th image. In Last Burst mode the camera will take up to 30 pictures (2 per second) but saves only the last 4. The LCD viewfinder displays the last captured image during both burst modes, making it difficult to use while following moving subjects; this is when an optical viewfinder would come in handy. All tests were done using a SanDisk Extreme III 1.0 GB SD card, using 8.0MP image size, Auto mode, flash off, review off, and all other settings at default (unless otherwise noted.) Times may vary depending on lighting conditions, camera settings, media, etc.

With an 8-megapixel image size the C875 produces very good quality photos that can be printed up to 30X40 inches. With the 5X zoom you are able to frame your subjects from a comfortable distance as in our samples page. The 37mm wide angle is great for inside and landscape shots, and the 185mm telephoto end of the zoom range works good for bringing those distant shots up close. Our samples stayed sharp with minimal lens distortion throughout the zoom range with only a small amount of barrel distortion at wide-angle.

While shooting indoors you will need to work within the 13 feet range of the C875's flash. This works well for most indoor shooting, however you will need to watch your light in a large open room. Our indoor portrait samples showed good flash exposure and pleasing skin tones, and the camera's red eye reduction flash mode was effective on most subjects. This model includes a focus assist lamp, allowing the AF system to work well in low ambient light. The C875 controls the flash well at close range, making it a good choice for macro photography or producing images of small objects for online auction listings.

The C875's movie mode produced average results for a consumer model. My indoor movie was easy to make and the camera did a good job with sound and autofocus. While recording video, it was also nice to be able to use the optical zoom, but beware you will hear a slight motor whine while zooming in or out from the zoom mechanism.

Power is supplied by either 2 standard AA-type cells, (Alkaline, NiMH, or Lithium), or a single CR-V3 type lithium pack. Using a set of 2500mAh NiMH batteries allowed me to capture many of our samples (about 75 shots and several movies) as well as conclude many of our other tests before having to put in a new set. The actual amount of images you can capture will determine solely on how often you use the LCD and flash.

Bottom line - The Kodak EasyShare C875 offers good high-end features for a reasonably low price of $199 or less, yet remains easy to use and handle. While bypassing a lot a gimmick features, and still providing solid exposure and lens controls. I found this model to be an easy fit for my hand while offering good overall shooting performance, great image quality, and loads of user-friendly exposure modes. The C875 is a great choice for anyone seeking a balance between features, image quality, and a fair price.

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