THE ALL-ROUND PERFORMER
Casio Exilim EX-100
Casio is one brand that’s been taking a rather unconventional road with their cameras, but if one goes by the popularity of their TR-series “selfie” cameras, it’s working out for them. When marketing their latest Exilim EX-100 premium compact, Casio’s positioning is more of a lifestyle companion rather than something that boasts the latest and greatest hardware. That’s not to say the EX-100 has lackluster features, it has the ability to shoot at F2.8 throughout its 10.7x optical range and comes with Casio’s Intelligent Bracketing.
The camera itself is chunkier than your average point-and shoot, partly because its flip-up 3.5-inch 921,600-dot LCD display increases the overall dimensions of the camera. Its die-cast magnesium body also contributes to a solid and sturdy feel. Plus, the glass used in its lens construction has to be larger and heavier to achieve its wide constant aperture.
As a premium compact, we’d expect some advanced features and the EX-100 comes with a control ring that you can assign various functions to such as white balance, ISO and zooming in and out like a DSLR lens. Its Intelligent Bracketing function shoots 9 images with varying settings you can choose from so you can get the best-looking of the bunch without worrying about getting it right on the first try.
One of the few interesting features of the EX-100 is its built-in kickstand behind the LCD display to help prop up the camera. There’s also an additional shutter button at the bottom front corner below the lens, which is handy for taking selfies. It’s a shame however, that the display isn’t touchenabled; you must use the d-pad to select settings and set autofocus area.
Images right out of the camera possess colors that are quite accurate and vibrant without being overly saturated. Image stabilization performed quite well too, even at the longest end of its zoom. The EX-100 scored 2,000 (in both vertical and horizontal LPH) in our resolution test. The camera does a good job keep noise to a minimum while retaining detail up to ISO200. Between ISO200 and ISO400, noise starts to creep in, and details start to meld at ISO800. The EX-100’s battery life is rated at 390 shots, which is more than the standard premium compact camera.
The Casio EX-100 is a match for any superzoom with its decent zoom range, good image quality and F2.8 even at the longest end. Its selfie friendly design, from flip screen to kickstand give it a lifestyle advantage as well. Whether it’s worth a dollar shy of $1,200 is the point of contention.