The M530’s overall performance is pretty slow, but not disastrously so. It starts up in approximately four seconds, and shuts down again in just under three, which isn’t too bad. In single-shot mode it has a shot-to-shot time which averages approximately two and a half seconds, but it does slow down to about three seconds after the first five frames as the buffer fills up. It has no continuous shooting mode as such, but it does have a burst mode that shoots three shots in just over two seconds.
The autofocus system is unfortunately where some of the cost-cutting corners have been cut. It is very slow and clunky even in good light, and in dim light it slows down even more, and fails to either focus or measure exposure at twilight levels of darkness.
Image quality is never going to be stellar in a camera at this sort of price level, but the M530 isn’t as bad as some of its contemporaries. The overall level of detail is excellent, and the dynamic range is better than some more expensive models. The lens quality isn’t brilliant, with a slight overall softness and distinct chromatic aberration around the edges. The exposure meter does have a tendency to over-expose in response to backlighting, and colour reproduction is a bit pale. Image noise is also a bit of a problem, with colour distortions and visible noise even at the minimum 80 ISO, and getting progressively worse up to the maximum of 1000 ISO.
The Kodak EasyShare M530 is a reasonably stylish camera and well made considering its low cost. It lacks many of the features found on more expensive models, but image quality is no worse than expected for the price.