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Kodak EasyShare Z915 review




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Considering that it's a relatively new type of camera, the high-zoom compact has taken off in a big way. Just a couple of years ago the choice was limited to the Ricoh R7 or the Panasonic TZ3, but now almost every manufacturer has at least one such camera in its range, with cameras like the Ricoh CX1 (£240), Canon SX200 IS (£290), Olympus mju 9000 (£240) and of course the Panasonic TZ7 (£290) taking an ever larger share of the camera market. As one of the most prolific camera manufacturers it should be no surprise that Kodak has a couple of model in this category. I looked at the EasyShare Z8612 IS some time ago, but today I have Kodak's latest, the 10-megapixel, 10x zoom Z915. Launched in January this year, the Z915 is currently selling for £179.99 direct from Kodak's website. Compared to its main rivals it looks like good value for money, so what's it really like?

It certainly has all the hallmarks of the modern high-zoom compact. The body measures 107 × 72.4 × 35.7 mm, so it will fit into a coat pocket or handbag but is really too big for a shirt pocket. Weighing 220g body-only it's the same weight as the Canon SX200 and is slightly heavier than the Panasonic TZ7, but then you have to add the weight of a pair of AA batteries, so you can add 50g to that, making the Z915 a heavy camera for its size.

The body is made of plastic, and is available in red, blue, black or the grey shown here. The style of the body is obviously supposed to emulate that of a digital SLR, with a raised turret for the fixed built-in flash, a small handgrip on the right and a knurled mode dial on the top panel. The overall build quality is very good, and with its relatively high weight the Z915 does feel a lot more solid and competent than its price tag would suggest.

The LCD monitor is 2.5 inches and 230,000 dots, so it's decently sharp, and it has adjustable brightness and a good anti-glare surface so it's usable outdoors. The angle of view is good from side to side and from above, but unfortunately terrible from below, such as when holding the camera overhead to shoot over a crowd.


July 17, 2009, 6:26 pm

Umm.. The 10X zoom Canon SX110 IS can be had for £175, and as much as I'd like Kodak to be a big name player again, it completely beats it into submission.. Kodak also needs to hire a new designer, the camera is freakishly ugly. It might not have mattered five years ago, but we all know how consumers really do care about how their gadgets look now..


July 18, 2009, 4:40 am

I'm quite impressed with the iso tests with this camera, it looks really good at 1600. Also, the shadow detail in the dynamic range was good. Looks are important, but I quite like the design of this which just goes to prove that beauty is in the eye of the beholder ;) If they could make the same design but in metal and lower the compression of the images, I'd be interested.


November 15, 2009, 10:42 pm

Noodles...the Z915 is available for LESS than £120 now which is substantially lower than the review price. This MUST make a value difference but for me the focussing delay is the downer. I can live with the claimed image deficiencies which certainly do not show (for me anyway) in the samples shown. The high ISO result is particularly impressive. Shame.....this could have been one of the cameras to help Kodak back on their feet.

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