Casio EX-Z50 Review

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Casio Exilim EX-Z50

Review posted 10/20/2004

Click on the EX-Z50 to take a QTVR tour

Casio's new EXILIM ZOOM model (as of 10/2004), the EX-Z50 incorporates Casio's EXILIM Engine, a 5-megapixel imager, and Pentax's high-quality smc 3x optical zoom lens. It shares these features with its "big brother" the EX-Z55, but has a smaller 2.0-inch LCD. This is a compact and stylish point-n-shoot wrapped up in a durable aluminum alloy body.

The EX-Z50 combines a 3-segment telescoping lens mechanism that makes it possible to provide 3X optical zoom capabilities in a extremely thin camera and a robust 7-point Multi-Auto Focus system for optimum focusing. It's ready to go in under 2 seconds from being turned on. The large 2.0-inch TFT LCD monitor features a digital interface for a clear display of images. The monitor screen can be used to compose images, and a collection of display features helps to make image viewing easier.

Like all models in the EXILIM series, the EX-Z50 offers superior portability and excellent picture quality, along with extremely high-speed operation for quick response in a variety of shooting situations. For example, its Best Shot function allow users to select settings automatically by choosing from sample scenes. In addition, several new functions have been incorporated to assure a higher level of performance, such as the "Auto Macro" function which automatically switches between Normal and Macro focus modes; "Flash Assist" which operates during flash photography to compensate for brightness levels in darker areas not reached by the flash; "Icon Help" which uses an on-screen display to guide the user during the switching of settings; and the "Business Shot" function which provides automatic correction for photos taken at an angle.

Casio Exilim EX-Z50

The EX-Z50's supplied docking cradle enables you to charge the proprietary lithium-ion battery pack and transfer images to your computer by simply pressing the USB button. From there, the PhotoLoader software automatically transfers all JPEG and AVI files in image memory to the computer. Pressing the Photo button starts a slide show of images currently in camera memory. The camera can even be set up to display the desired images whenever it is placed on the cradle.

The EX-Z50 can store images in HTML format so they can be viewed easily by any modern web browser. You can record voice memos that can be played back in the camera thanks to its built-in speaker. Photostand mode lets you view a slide show of images with the camera on its cradle. The Calendar feature shows you thumbnails of photos on the day they were taken. World Time lets you select one of 162 cities in 32 time zones as your home or destination time zone. You can also store special photographs or photos you don't want others to see in the "Favorites folder".

In addition to its 9.3 MB of built-in Flash Memory, it also supports the use of SD memory cards and MMC cards (not included). An easy operation copies images between a memory card and built-in memory. You can customize key operations to assign recording mode, exposure compensation, white balance, ISO sensitivity or self-timer functions to the left/right controller buttons. These settings may be changed by simply pressing the left or right control button.

Casio claims the EX-Z50 has a 10% longer battery life than that of the recently reviewed EX-Z40, allowing you to capture up to 390 shots, and a continuous playback time of over 6 hours. Based on CIPA standard battery life measurement (standard procedure for measuring digital still camera battery consumption).

Exilim EX-Z50 Features:

  • 5.0-Megapixel effective CCD imager
  • High-quality, light-weight aluminum body
  • Still Image: 2560x1920, 2560x1712(3:2), 2048x1536, 1600x1200, 1280x960, 640x480
  • Audio recording, attached to images or audio-only
  • Record movies at 320x240 (15fps), length limited only by available memory
  • Pentax 3x optical zoom (35-105mm equiv)
  • Approximate two second startup time
  • Fast shot to shot time even when using the flash
  • 7-point autofocus system with selectable AF modes: Multi or Spot AF
  • Focus modes: Auto, Pan, Macro, Infinity, Manual focus, Focus lock
  • New "Auto Macro" function which automatically switches to Macro mode
  • Automatic 4 to 1/2000 sec. shutter speeds
  • Built-in flash with Red Eye Reduction and Flash-assist function
  • 2.0-inch TFT color LCD with 84,960 pixels (354x240) of resolution
  • 4X playback zoom magnification
  • USB 1.1 data transfer to PC or Mac computers
  • Li-ion rechargeable battery and charging cradle included
  • 10% longer battery life than previous Exilim models
  • 9.3 Megabytes of internal memory
  • Secure Digital/MMC card slot for memory expansion
  • DPOF, ExifPrint (Exif 2.2), USB Direct-Print, and PictBridge compatible

The Casio EX-Z50 has a suggested retail of about $399.99 and is available now.

Physical Views

Casio Exilim EX-Z50

Casio Exilim EX-Z50

Casio Exilim EX-Z50Casio Exilim EX-Z50

Casio Exilim EX-Z50

Casio Exilim EX-Z50

Casio Exilim EX-Z50

The EX-Z50 compared to an average Compact Disc.

EX-Z50 and the SD110

The 5-megapixel Panasonic DMC-FX7 and the EX-Z50 for size comparison.

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Features & Controls

Casio EX-Z50 Specifications

Recording Element 1/2.5-inch square pixel primary color CCD (5.25 million total pixels; 5 million effective pixels)
File Record Format
Snapshots: JPEG (Exif. Ver. 2.2), DCF standard, DPOF compliant
Movies: AVI (Motion JPEG), Audio: WAV (Monaural)
Recording Media Built-in flash memory (9.3 MB), SD memory card/Multi Media card
Recorded Image Sizes
Snapshots : 2560 X 1920 / 2560 X 1712 (3:2) / 2048 X 1536 / 1600 X 1200 / 1280 X 960 / 640 X 480 pixels
Movies :320 X 240 pixels
Recorded File Sizes
Snapshots Image size
Resolution /
recording time
File size Built-in memory
64MB *1
Movies 320x240 Recording time: unlimited*2 Approx. 300KB/sec.
30 sec.
3 min.
20 sec.
Audio - Recording time: unlimited*2 Approx.
39 min.
4 hr.
20 min.
*1 when using a Panasonic 64MB card
*2 limited only by the battery life and the available memory
Lens smc Pentax Lens (6 lenses in 5 groups, including aspherical lens) F2.6(W) to 4.8(T); f=5.8(W) to 17.4(T) mm (equivalent to approximately 35 to 105 mm when converted to 35mm film)
Zoom 3X optical zoom; 4X digital zoom (12X total when optical and digital zooms are used in combination)
Focusing Contrast type AF (selectable between spot, multi); pan focus; macro mode; infinity mode; manual focus
Focus Range
Normal: 15.7 in. (40cm) to infinity;
Macro: 2.4 in. (6cm) to 19.7 in. (50cm)
Exposure Control
Metering : Multi-pattern by imaging element
Control : Program AE
Control Exposure Compensation: -2EV to +2EV (in 1/3EV steps)
Shutter CCD electronic / mechanical shutter; 4 to 1/2000 second shutter speed (including night mode)
Aperture Auto; F2.6 / F4.3 Automatic switching
White Balance Auto; Fixed (6 modes); Manual
Sensitivity Auto; ISO50 / ISO100 / ISO200 / ISO400
Recording Functions Snapshot; audio snapshot; movies with audio; Best Shot; Business Shot; Auto Macro; Flash Assist; voice recorder; Icon Help; sharpness/color saturation/contrast/flash intensity settings
Self-timer 10 seconds or 2 seconds; Triple Self-timer
Built-in Flash Flash Modes: Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Red Eye Reduction
Approximate Range: 1.3 ft. (0.4m) to 8.5 ft. (2.6m) at wide angle; 1.3 ft. (0.4m) to 6.6 ft. (2.0m) at telephoto
Viewfinder LCD screen; optical viewfinder
Monitor Screen 2.0-inch digital interface TFT color LCD, 84,960 pixels (354x240)
Playback Zoom display (4X); 9 picture display; calendar; Photostand function
Time keeping Functions Date and time recorded with image data; auto calendar up to year 2049
World Time 162 cities (32 time zones); city names; date and time; daylight saving time
Other features Histogram display; grid display; album function; favorites folder
Input/Output Terminals USB cradle terminal
Battery Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery
Battery life Approx. 390 snapshots (CIPA standard)
Continuous recording: approx. 970 snapshots (3 hr. 10 min.) * Continuous playback: approx. 6 hr. 20 min. (still photos) Continuous recording: approx. 5 hr. 50 min. (voice recording)
Dimensions 87(W) x 57(H) x 22.4(D) mm (excluding protrusions, thinnest point 19.7mm)
Weight Approximately 121g (excluding battery and accessories)
Bundled Accessories Lithium Ion rechargeable battery; USB cradle; USB cable; AC adapter; Strap; CD-ROM

NOTE: These Specifications are as represented by the manufacturer.

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Features & Controls

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