Olympus’ latest range of Tough digital compacts are, says Olympus, designed to provide rugged good looks with great image quality. The Olympus Tough TG-260 sits within the latest Tough set of cameras, below the higher specified TG-820 and the TG-320 – we find out if it is any good.
Performance and Verdict
Olympus Tough TG-620 Review – Performance
The Olympus Tough TG-620 is capable of making well exposed images while colour capture is very good indeed. The 28-140mm zoom lens is capable and produces plenty of detail at both the wide and tele ends of its range although I noticed some slight softening in the corners at the full zoom end of the lens and there’s some purple fringing visible in high contrast areas.
The three close-up shooting modes of macro, super macro and super macro LED allow a closest focus distance of an impressive 3cm in super macro mode but using the LED light resulted in over bright hot spots on some of my larger small subjects.
Image noise at ISO 100 is impressively absent, but at ISO 200 it starts to appear, subtly at least. At ISO 400 it increases slightly while ISO 800 the noise processing makes images softer and at ISO 1600 noise and its removal makes images more grainy still and reduces both detail and colour vibrancy suffers a tad too. Noise quickly increase at ISO 3200 and 6400, but image are nevertheless (almost) usable but are better left for use for the web.
The best colour comes when using the Landscape mode, with superb blues and greens; skin tones in Portraits are excellent too, Sport mode gets access to faster shutter speeds tanned boosted ISO and works well, the camera’s fleetness of foot making it ideal for fleeting subjects.
In terms of white-balance the auto setting is bait hit a miss in mixed lighting with orange colour casts being noticeable. Overall however, the auto setting does a good job overall but the best colour and white balance came by using the correct white balance setting for the ambient lighting, as you’d expect.
When shooting video, I found the HD quality to be acceptable if slightly granular, not all Magic filters can be used when shooting video but overall I found the video quality to be rather good for this type of camera as is its value.
Olympus Tough TG-620 Review – Verdict
If you‚’re the outdoors type, snorkel or climb, run in the rain or cycle everywhere and want to snap or shoot video as you go, cameras such as the Olympus Tough TG-620 make it possible. And it provides great image quality and can cope working underwater and in freezing conditions. One thing I always dislike on cameras such as this is shellack of negative buoyancy, so if you drop it underwater and don’t have it strapped to you, it’ll sink like a stone.
However, the picture quality and the TG-620’s other rugged merits, make it worth considering if you are on a tighter budget (than the Olympus Tough TG-820 allows) but still want plenty of great features and image quality to boot.