Review Epson sets a high standard in image quality and the capabilities of the PhotoPC 3100Z won't disappoint. Professionals may find the lack of manual configuration limiting, but it's a good choice for novices looking to upgrade.
The Epson is an easy-to-use, mid-range camera with great picture quality. However, there have been cutbacks to allow the low price tag. Epson has kept the same chassis as its previous model, and the rubber grip on the side makes for comfortable use. While the 3.3Mp (megapixel) CCD sensor and 16MB CompactFlash card haven't changed, you can now store more shots on the 3100Z.
High-resolution images are brilliantly detailed, but we couldn't find any difference in quality on pictures using the HyPict interpolation, which allegedly bumps the pixel count up to 4.8Mp. Though vivid, shots didn't look any better than those taken at maximum resolution.
When it comes to ease of use there aren't many on-board navigation systems that better the PhotoPC. Seven control buttons correspond to information on the LCD, so navigating menus is simple. Strangely, the mode dial has a separate setting for taking shots through the viewfinder in order to save on batteries - it would make more sense just to turn the LCD off.
For economy, Epson has neglected some important features - for example, zoom isn't great, and there's neither mains adaptor nor charger.
Epson's camera may be limiting for a professional user but novices looking to widen their experiences should find it perfect for their needs. ®
Contact: 0800 220 4560
- 3.3Mp (4.8Mp HyPict)
- max resolution 2048x1,536 (2544x1904 HyPict)
- min resolution 640x480
- 16MB CompactFlash card
- min 12 and max 199 photos on 16MB
Build quality: 8
All details correct at time of publication.
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