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The SZ 14 Olympus Digital Camera - The Best Zoom Camera For The Money

Updated on October 4, 2014
The Olympus SZ14 camera, straight out of the box.
The Olympus SZ14 camera, straight out of the box. | Source

Looking for a new Digital Camera - The Olympus SZ-14

Are you thinking of buying a new compact camera? Then you have come to the right place. My trusty Panasonic Lumix is starting to look tired so after researching the internet for all the compact cameras available under $200, I made the decision to purchase an Olympus SZ-14.

So the questions are, what did I get for my money, and I guess even more importantly, was it worth it! Let's find out.

All Photo Credit: The Author

Olympus 14MP Digital Camera SZ-14 with 24x Optical Zoom
Olympus 14MP Digital Camera SZ-14 with 24x Optical Zoom

If you want a cheap camera that will provide you with portability and fantastic pictures, especially if you are a fan of long distance photography, then the SZ-14 is perfect for you.

 

Testing the Olympus SZ-14

A photo of a rose by the Olympus SZ-14
A photo of a rose by the Olympus SZ-14

What Criteria Did I Use?

I travel a lot so the camera I chose had to fit in the palm of my hand and also a jacket pocket. It also had to cost less than $200 dollars and have the following specifications:

- Minimum of 14m megapixels

- Built in flash

- Optical zoom over 20x

- Lithium Ion battery

- 3" Viewing screen

- Reputable lens manufacturer

- Use the zoom during video

- Minimum half high definition (HD)

- Intuitive and simple to use

Olympus SZ-14 - What's in the box
Olympus SZ-14 - What's in the box

What comes in the box?

The Olympus SZ-14 comes with:

- USB Mains Charger

- Instruction Manual

- Instruction CD

- Wrist Strap

- 12 Month Warranty

- Lithium Ion Battery

This camera, straight out of the box was fully charged in less than an hour and was the perfect point and shoot camera. It brings a whole new meaning to the term intuitive. You can immediately use the Olympus SZ-14 and get great photos.

And if you haven't read the instructions (and really who does?) there is a help button that takes you through how the camera performs each function. Perfect.

The Pictures?

The variety the Olympus SZ-14 brings to the compact camera is amazing. Everything from a simple to use panorama function to a full array of settings that ensure that every photo you take brings the subject matter to life. What you also get is a palette of vibrant colours and consistent clear photos are achieved through an automatic image stabilization system.

But a picture is worth a 1000 words. So here are a few pictures from the Olympus SZ-14.

Local Graffiti Art - Taken with the Olympus SZ-14

Local Graffiti Art - Taken with the Olympus SZ-14
Local Graffiti Art - Taken with the Olympus SZ-14

Before Zoom - A Cricket Ground with Stand

Before Zoom - A Cricket Ground with Stand
Before Zoom - A Cricket Ground with Stand

After Zoom - You Can Even See the Score

After Zoom - You Can Even See the Score
After Zoom - You Can Even See the Score

More Graffiti - Even Cartoons Need a Margarita

More Graffiti - Even Cartoons Need a Margarita
More Graffiti - Even Cartoons Need a Margarita
Worked Up a Thirst
Worked Up a Thirst

The Full Specifications for the Olympus SZ-14

Sensor - 1/2.3in, 14MP CCD sensor

Lens - 24x optical zoom, 25 - 600mm, f/3 - 6.9

LCD Display - 3in, 460k-dot LCD

File Formats - JPEG, MP4

Shutter Speeds - 4 - 1/700 sec

ISO Range - 80 - 1600

White Balance - Auto, Preset, Custom

Flash Modes - Auto, Red-eye, Fill-in, off

Memory Card - SD, SDHC, SDXC

Connectivity - USB 2, HDMI

Power - Li-ion rechargeable

Dimensions - 106.5 x 68.7 x 39.5mm

Weight - 216g

Video - 1280 x 720p

Should You Buy the Olympus SZ-14?

Pros: This camera has one of the best long zooms available in a compact camera with its 24x optical zoom. It is also easy to operate, feels nice in your hand and it comes with plenty of effect options including a 3D mode and a panoramic option. You can also use the zoom option whilst making a video and there is a handy auto white balancing and shot timer function.

Cons: The one downside I have found is that whilst making a video you can hear the lens zoom motor on the soundtrack.

Conclusion: If you are looking for an easy to use, great compact camera then the Olympus SZ-14 is the perfect choice. It will be making many a journey and capturing many a memory for the foreseeable future.

Are you looking for a new Digital Camera?

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    • Bercton1 profile image

      Bercton1 4 years ago

      Really admire the Olympus sz- 14. I have a olympus with 4.2 zoom so i will be checking more into the Sz -14. Thanks for being very informative!

    • tedwritesstuff24 profile image
      Author

      TedWritesStuff 4 years ago

      @deforst: Thanks for popping by.

    • deforst profile image

      deforst 4 years ago

      I certainly am, and I really want one with a good zoom...this one looks like the one for me too. Many thanks for your very informative lens!