A compact with more style than the price alludes to

Product Overview

Overall rating:

83%

Casio EXILIM EX-Z25

Overall score:83%
Features:85%
Value:80%
Performance:80%
Design:85%
Image Quality:85%

Pros:

  • Slim, simple to use camera with a HD video mode at an affordable price

Cons:

  • Images are flawed in a number of areas, zoom is too short

Product:

Casio EXILIM EX-Z25 Review

Manufacturer:

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The Casio EX-Z25 is a stylish, slim compact offering 12.1MP and a 3x optical zoom. Also included is a 720p high-definition video mode and Auto Best Shot mode.

Casio EX-Z25 Review – Features

With a HD movie mode the EX-Z25 has an impressive feature for the price range straight from the get-go. Although a larger number of compacts are offering this ability being barely over £100 and having the 720p recording mode is very impressive. While this is the obvious standout feature on the EX-Z25, elsewhere are some slightly underwhelming specs. The 3x optical zoom is a touch short to make the camera particularly versatile, and the 2.7″ LCD screen only stands at 230k resolution rather than the 920k which has become standard. Having a Makeup mode does aid portrait shots by slightly blurring the focus to reduce the appearance of blemishes on the subject. Auto Best Shot, which automatically chooses a Scene mode dependant on the environment being shot, is somewhat hit and miss, tending to favour the Night Shot for any images even vaguely outside of perfect lighting. As the ISO is relatively limited at 1600 this does result in some longer shutter speeds, so it’s often worth simply selecting the Scene mode separately.

Casio EX-Z25 Review – Design

The design is very much in keeping with the Casio Exilim range, offering a very simplistic rectangular shape with a brushed metal front. The slim, 102g lightweight frame means the EX-Z25 barely makes a dent in the pocket, and can be carried around on a day out without becoming a burden. The reduced space at the rear has resulted in far smaller buttons, the majority of which require a fingernail to press accurately. The video record shortcut, although helpful, is tiny although the impressive on-screen menu system is very straightforward to get to grips with. By having the list of options running down the right hand side of the screen instantly selectable via the Set button in the centre of the D-pad altering any settings is extremely simple and, more importantly, rapid. In spite of the screen being annoyingly low-res the icons are easy to pick out and don’t take much in the way of button presses to access.

Casio EX-Z25 Review – Image Quality

The images are derived from a 12.1MP CCD, via the f/3.1-5.9 3x zoom lens. Detail in the centre of the frame, especially on macro images, could be impressive, but the edges start to show serious signs of softness. Add to that the over-bearing pixel smoothing which is especially apparent against lighter backgrounds and tendency to blow out highlights and the versatility of the Z25 is severely limited. When given a relatively close subject to deal with and a limited depth of field the end quality isn’t too bad, making the other deficiencies all the more frustrating.

Verdict

Although the image quality is flawed and the zoom too short, the EX-Z25 delivers on the majority of the expectations of a camera in this price range.

Full Specification

Other:
720p HD Video
Weight:
102g

Dimensions:
89.7 x 51.7 x 19.0mm
Power:
Li-ion

Connectivity:
USB/AV
Flash Modes:
Auto, on, off, Redeye reduction, soft flash

Memory Card:
SD/SDHC
White Balance:
Auto, 6 Presets, Manual

ISO Range:
64-1600
Metering System:
Multi-pattern, Centre Weighted, Spot

Exposure Modes:
Auto, Easy, Scene (32 Scene Modes)
Shutter Speeds:
4-1/2000 sec

File Formats:
JPEG, AVI, M-JPEG
LCD:
2.7”

Lens:
38-114mm, F3.1-5.9
Sensor:
12.1MP, 1/2.3”