Olympus Tough TG-1 Review

March 27, 2013 | Zoltan Arva-Toth |


The Olympus Tough TG-1 is one of the most advanced “tough” cameras in the market. Its remarkable rugged credentials – waterproof to 12m, crushproof to 100kg, freezeproof to -10 °C and capable of withstanding drops from a height of 2m – are paired with a traditional design, down to the inclusion of a conventional mode dial, and an excellent 25-100mm (eq.) f/2.0-4.9 lens that allows it to stand out from the crowd.

Its image quality – while obviously not in the same league as a digital SLR or compact system camera – is definitely better than that of its predecessors, thanks in a large part to this lens. Olympus has also addressed a problem that has plagued many cameras in the Tough range, namely the slow operational and AF speed. Again, you shouldn't compare the Olympus Tough TG-1 to a DSLR, but among all-weather compacts it's clearly one of the faster and more responsive offerings.

In terms of features, it ticks almost all the boxes with a manometer, GPS, Full HD movies with stereo sound; and even offers some unexpected extras like the ability to take conversion lenses, wirelessly control compatible remote flashguns or store your settings in custom memory banks. In light of all this it's a bit of a let-down, then, that manual exposure adjustments are not supported, and there's no direct-button access to sensitivity and exposure compensation, either.

Overall though, the Olympus Tough TG-1 is a solid camera in more than one way, and one that easily earns our “Recommended” award.

4 stars

Ratings (out of 5)
Design 4
Features 4.5
Ease-of-use 4
Image quality 4
Value for money 4