Yashica EZ 4030 Digital

This entry-level digicam from Kyocera was the cheapest 4-megapixel, 3x optical zoom camera on sale when we went to press. It’s reasonably compact and easy to use and it’s supplied with a neat carrying pouch. The EZ 4030’s body is conventionally designed and rather chunky, but it’s well built for its type and, unlike some competing models, has a tripod mount.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T30

8.5 Rating

A stylish, high-resolution digicam that is pocketable and has dual image stabilisation systems.The DSC-T30 Cyber-shot is the eighth and highest-resolution model in Sony’s slimline digicam range but shares many features with earlier models. Equipped with a 7.2-megapixel Super HAD CCD imager, 3x optical zoom lens and 3.0-inch LCD, it’s small enough to slip in a shirt pocket. Sony has added two new features to ensure users obtain sharp pictures with this tiny camera: Super SteadyShot image stabilisation and a new High Sensitivity Mode that selects ISO 1000 to reduce camera shake. Both are a step up from the Steady Shot mode on the earlier T9 model.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T3

Sony’s pocket-sized Cyber-shot DSC-T3 is slimmer and lighter than the T1 model it replaces but has the same 5-megapixel sensor and Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 3x optical zoom lens. The large 2.5-inch LCD panel features a new ‘Clear Photo’ technology that reduces the impact of reflected light and provides a better view in bright conditions. No viewfinder is provided. The lens sits in the top corner and zooming movements are internal, so it’s easy to intrude a finger into the field of view. A tiny built-in flash is positioned beside the lens above the AF illuminator.

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-P200

Similar in functionality to the P150 model, Sony’s DSC-P200 features a high-resolution 7.2 megapixel CCD and 3x optical zoom lens but a larger, 2-inch LCD monitor. A small, somewhat tight, optical viewfinder is also provided. Available in silver, red or black, its body is slightly smaller and lighter than the P150, making it more pocketable. Ease of use will make the P200 equally appealing to both rank beginners and more experienced users.

Sanyo Xacti VPC-C1

Sanyo’s compact VPC-C1 camera is designed more for video capture than stills photography and its styling reflects this bias. There’s no viewfinder and the movable LCD screen doubles as an on/off switch. Switching the camera on activates a voice prompt that tells you what mode has been selected. The control suite is limited and the buttons are rather crowded, but the menu system is straightforward.

Samsung Digimax U-CA5

Available in grey, wine red or slate blue Samsung’s Digimax U-CA5 sports a 5-megapixel CCD and Samsung-branded 3x optical zoom lens. Although designed for point-and-shoot photographers, like the V700 model it has lots of user-adjustable controls, including some innovative effects settings. However, its idiosyncratic menu system makes some of them hard to reach.

Ricoh Caplio 300G

Shots from the test camera were slightly contrasty but colour accurate and sharp. Flash coverage was modest and the white balance performed best with the custom setting. Low light shots had a scattering of stuck pixels at all ISO settings. Capture lag averaged 0.25 seconds, extending to 0.6 seconds with subjects that were difficult to focus.