Product review: Olympus i Zoom 2000


Friday, September 8th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6


The Olympus i Zoom 2000 looks like a camera that James Bond would love. It's high-tech, using Advanced Photo System (APS) film. It's super-small, about the size of a deck of baccarat cards. And it's stylish, coming in Aston Martin silver or classic black.

Poring over the camera's list of features, I could imagine myself using the 25-50 mm zoom to photograph a secret enemy fighter base, framing the image in one of the three formats (classic, HDTV and panoramic) and using the autofocus and multiple flash options to snap perfect photos.

I didn't have any fighter bases handy for my tests, but I did have a worthy challenge for any camera: a birthday party full of 3-year-olds. In that fast-moving, action-packed scene, the i Zoom's size became an annoyance. I found myself fumbling with the tiny power, flash and frame controls.

The APS format means that film and developing come at premium prices, but it did allow easy film loading and provided me with a handy index of the photos. It should have produced prints in the aforementioned formats, too, but a problem with the camera or the developer led all prints to come back in the same size. A replacement camera and different developer solved that issue.

The proof of a camera is in the prints, and my results were, well, about the same as I've had with any automatic camera. Some were great, but some shot indoors were blurry or grainy. The results weren't bad, just nothing that would earn me a medal.

The i Zoom 2000 has a suggested price of $254. Call 1-800-645-8160 or visit www.olympusamerica.com