OLYMPUS STYLUS SZ-16
$298, from major electrical stores SPECIFICATIONS 16-megapixel resolution, 24x optical zoom, 3-inch screen. Not Wi-Fi enabled. SIZE Tipping the scales at 227g, this camera is bulky but the most ergonomic. USING IT It was the easiest to navigate with its up, down, left, right and OK buttons. PERFORMANCE This has the highest optical zoom – I could home in on faces 12m away. At 24x optical zoom, photos and words on the noticeboard were sharp and distinct, albeit a bit grainy. But it made a soft clicking sound each time I focused my shot, which I found annoying. Pictures taken in auto mode had a reddish hue, so portraits looked unnaturally warm – I had to tweak the settings manually for a more natural tone. EFFECTS The 11 filters include miniature, reflection, sparkle (adds stars to light sources) and pinhole. I liked the dramatic filter best, which gave my photos a grungy, high-contrast effect. There’s also a beauty mode to add “makeup” to portraits. VERDICT Gets you closest to distant objects, but the colours of the photos are the most unnatural.