Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom Digital Camera Review

Olympus SP-500 is a 10X optical zoom camera, meaning it is an ultra zoom camera, way above the average zoom of other cameras; it provides 6 Megapixel CCD, large 2.5 inch LCD display, full manual controls (including white balance and focus), and plenty of scene modes plus shortcuts and custom button.

The size of the camera is bigger than a compact but smaller than a SLR (one of the smaller ultra zooms and the lightest camera in its class) ; it has a pop-up flash and a lens cap on the plastic black body. The buttons are intuitively placed and the hand grip is perfect.

The power-up and shooting times are about average. Noise reduction, panorama mode and panorama stitch software, histogram, build-in red eye removal and frame assist are the main features that would make me choose this ultra zoom digital camera. There is a possibility to shoot in RAW format with camera and that also pleases me a lot. The only thing it misses is image stabilization.

Another advantage of buying this camera is the possibility of adding accessories such as filters and lenses thru the Conversion lens adapter CLA-4 : Wide-angle lens WCON-07 and Telephoto lens TCON-17. However, you cannot attach an external flash to this camera.

The images are sharp, slight brownish and a bit noisy – anyway, quite decent. Some unexplainable thing is that if you are recording a movie with sound you can’t use the zoom, but without sound you can.
Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom
Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom
Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom
Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom
Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom
Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom

Olympus SP-500 Ultra Zoom Digital Camera Specifications

• Shooting Modes: AUTO, Program Auto, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, Manual, My Modes, Scene Preset
• Scene Modes: Portrait, Landscape, Landscape + Portrait, Night Scene, Sport, Night + Portrait, Indoor, Candle, Self-Portrait, Olympus SP-500 Ultra ZoomAvailable Light Portrait, Sunset, Fireworks, Museum, Behind Glass, Cuisine, Documents, Auction, Shoot & Select1, Shoot & Select2, Beach, Snow
• Movie Mode: QuickTime Movie with Sound, JPEG, @HQ 320 x 240 30fps/ SQ@ 320 x 240 15fps
• Effects: sharpness, contrast, saturation
• Flash Modes: Auto (for low light and back lit conditions), Red-eye Reduction, Fill-in, Fill-in + red eye, Off
• Focus Modes: iESP auto, Spot AF, Selective AF target, Manual
• White Balance: iESP2 multi-pattern auto TTL, Pre-set, (One-touch, Overcast, Sunlight, Evening sun, Tungsten,(3) Fluorescents) WB compensation +/-7
• Metering: Digital iESP multi-pattern auto TTL, Spot metering, Center Weighted metering
Technical Data:
• 2.5 inch LCD
• 6 megapixels
• 10x optical zoom + 5x digital zoom
• Focal Length: 6.3 – 63 mm (38-380mm equivalent in 35mm photography)
• Aperture: f2.8- f3.7 (adjustable in 1/3 EV step)
• ISO Range: Auto/80/100/200/400
• Flash Range: Wide: 0.3~ 4.5m Tele: 1.2 ~ 3.4m
• Focus Range:
Normal: (W) 0.6m (23.62 inches) – infinity, (T) 2m (78.74 inches)- infinity
Macro mode: (W) 0.07m(2.76 inches) – 0.6m (23.62 inches), (T) 1.2m (47.24 inches) – 2m (78.74 inches)
Super Macro Mode: up to 3cm (11.12mm) (1.18″)
• Exposure Compensation: +/- 2 EV steps in 1/3 EV steps
• Continuos Shooting: High speed; 1.75 frames per second up to 3 frames
Normal speed; 1.2 frames per second up to 13 frames in HQ mode
• Shutter Speed: 1/1000 sec -15 sec., Bulb
• Self Timer: 12 seconds
• File Format: DCF Exif 2.21, JPEG , PIM 3
• xD-Picture Card + 10MB internal memory
• 4 AA batteries

By Laura

I started photography as a hobby in 2005, during college. My passion slowly became a more important part of my life since 2008. Because of using a combination of my photographic knowledge, with those of internet marketing, I like to call myself a "photomarketer".

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