Casio EX-FS10 Review
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The Casio EX-FS10 shares most of the key features of its bigger, more expensive brother, the EX-FC100 model, but it ultimately falls short in a couple of key areas. The battery life is much worse, recording just 125 shots and a couple of movies before needing to be recharged, so you'll need to budget for a spare. While the 3x folded optic lens allows the camera to be incredibly slim, it's also slow at either end of the rather limited zoom range - again the FC100 is a lot better in this regard. The position of the lens tight in the corner of the camera body also makes it easy for your left forefinger to inadvertently appear in your photos.
On a more positive note, the ability to shoot 30 images in one second at the touch of a button is amazing for any camera, DSLR or compact, and if you can't choose the best shot, then the EX-FS10 can do that for you too. The only downsides are the reduction in resolution to 6 megapixels, which applies to all of this camera's high-speed still image functions, and despite that, the fact that memory cards quickly fill up if you regularly use the burst mode. On the video side, the EX-FS10 can record both 720p HD and super slow-motion movies, although both modes are somewhat hampered by huge file sizes, poor or no sound, the inability to optically zoom, and in the case of slow-motion, drastically reduced resolutions. Still, having all of this functionality in such a compact and well-built camera puts the Casio EX-FS10 at the head of the action pack.
As with the FC100, the FS10's image quality doesn't quite match the feature list, suffering from less than stellar images in low-light due to obvious noise appearing at ISO 200 and faster. Most of this camera's recent main rivals also suffer from this problem, but they typically offer 12 or more megapixels, rather than the 9 megapixels of the EX-FS10. The fastest shutter speed of 4 seconds limits what you can do after dark, although the innovative High-Speed Night Scene mode partly makes up for this by allowing you to successfully hand-hold the camera in relatively low-light conditions. Anti-shake is only of the electronic software-based kind, which adversely affects image quality, and the 10cm macro mode is also disappointing on a 2009 camera.
$349.99 / £299.99 is a high price to pay for what is essentially a point and shoot compact with merely good image quality, so you really need to ask yourself if you will make full use of all those high-speed shooting options. If the answer is yes, then the Casio EX-FS10 is clearly one of the best cameras around for capturing all of the action. We'd still opt for the EX-FC100 though, which offers better battery life, a bigger LCD screen, mechanical image stabilisation and a closer macro mode, unless you really need the ultra-portable dimensions of the FS10...
|Ratings (out of 5)|
|Value for money||3.5|