Testing / Performance
*We test color accuracy by photographing a GretagMacbeth color chart in well lit studio conditions. The captured images are imported into Imatest Imaging Software to determine the accuracy of each rendered tone. Although many manufacturers purposely enhance red tones to provide more flattering portraits for certain subjects, Imatest Imaging Software looks for overall color accuracy and will rate these "purposeful" inconsistencies as inaccurate, lowering the overall color score rating. The results are displayed in the modified color chart below, with the colors produced by the camera in the outer square, while the ideal color is shown in the vertical rectangle. The smaller center square displays a color corrected version of the camera’s produced tone.
The chart below offers another representation of the camera’s produced colors in a more linear and quantitative manner. The square is the color produced by the camera, while the corresponding circle is the ideal. The longer the line connecting the two shapes, more inaccurate the color reproduction was during testing.
The Olympus D-425 performed fairly well, displaying consistent color reproduction throughout testing. The camera managed to garner an overall color rating of 8.42 with over-saturation occurring in areas which can be expected from most point-and-shoot cameras. The Foliage Green (#4) and Brown (#1) hues were both over-saturated which is a bit unexpected although an over-saturated green will merely make the enhanced red and orange tones pop from the image even more without seeming too unnatural. For a low priced point-and-shoot mode, the Olympus D-425 will produce colors that are far stronger than some cameras costing twice as much.
**Still Life Scene **
Below is a shot of our innovative still life scene captured with the Olympus D-425.
Click on the above image to view a full resolution version (CAUTION: the linked file is very large)](http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/viewer.php?picture=D-425-StillLifeLG.jpg)
Resolution / Sharpness*(2.94)*
The resolution and sharpness scores for the Olympus D-425 continued to impress on this little 1/2.5-inch 4 MP CCD. To properly gauge the number of pixels actually used in contrast to the number of effective pixels advertised, we capture a series of exposures of an industry standard resolution chart which are then uploaded into Imatest Imaging Software. The software reads the vertical and horizontal resolution of the photo and detects the actual number of pixels active in composing the image. We contrast each tested camera’s measured resolution with the advertised pixel count and report the scores as a percentage score and real pixel count. When this is done, cameras that achieve scores of 70% or better garner a "good" label, while scores of 80% or better are seen as "very good." Those few rare cameras that manage to achieve a 90% score or better land in the category of "excellent."
Click on the chart above to view full resolution version](http://www.digitalcamerainfo.com/viewer.php?picture=D-425-ResLG.jpg)
The Olympus D-425 managed to use 2.94 actual megapixels to form images. This is 75% of the camera’s 4 MP CCD. This should provide users some flexibility when editing in postproduction programs which may require cropping, enlarging, and printing in slightly expanded formats beyond 4 x 6 inches.
Noise Auto ISO*(4.87)
*Since the D-425 does not contain selectable ISO settings, users are forced to rely on the camera’s automatic setting. Unfortunately, the D-425 did not perform as well in terms of noise suppression as it did in color reproduction; however, the camera’s 4.87 overall auto ISO noise score is adequate and should produce images of acceptable clarity to most snapshooters.
Noise Manual ISO*(0.00)*
Although not a shocking omission for an entry level digital camera, the Olympus D-425 doesn’t provide the user with access to manual ISO settings. This may be a problem in moderate lighting when visibility remains (to the natural eye), but the camera is not sensitive enough to capture the scene.
Low light Performance*(3.5)
*We test the low light capabilities of each camera we review to evaluate its potential performance at night and perceive the sensitivity of the sensor. We tested the Olympus D-425 at 60, 30, 15, and 5 lux to simulate common low light shooting conditions; 60 lux appears like a moderately lit bedroom after dark, while 30 lux resembles the illumination of a 40 watt lightbulb, and 15 and 5 lux display the camera’s ability to capture images in near darkness. Our tests are conducted at the camera’s highest available ISO setting with the flash turned off. Since the D-425 does not have manually alterable ISO settings, the camera was set to auto and put to the test.
***Click on any of the charts above to view additional image analysis
Not surprisingly, given the camera’s purely automatic ISO setting and restricted 50-250 ISO range, the D-425 is not a strong low light performer, although it did surpass expectations. The camera’s 1/2.5-inch CCD sensor was far more sensitive than originally believed and performed well beyond some other more expensive models with manually controllable ISO settings reaching ISO 400. However, the compromised lighting did result in a significant decline in the camera’s strong color reproduction. The dramatic drop occurs from 30 lux to 15 lux, which is good news for point-and-shooters as 30 lux is relatively minimal illumination. The sensitive imager will help users shoot in shaded and indoor settings and is extremely impressive for this type of camera. Noise will be an issue, but users can always opt to utilize the flash and regain some clarity and color vibrancy.
Speed / Timing **
*Startup to First Shot (4.98)
*The Olympus D-425 took an eternity to boot up and record its first image - giving the user plenty of time to bake a birthday cake in between turning the camera on and taking the first shot. With 5.02 seconds of delay consumed before recording an image, hopefully users of the D-425 have a lot of patience.
*Shot to Shot Time (6.34) *
The D-425 averaged 3.66 seconds between shots, making it possible to whip up the icing for the aforementioned cake before capturing another image.
*Shutter to Shot Time (7.24)
*The Olympus D-425 displayed 0.88 seconds of lag between the release of the shutter button and capturing of the image. None of these speeds bode well for capturing images with any sort of alacrity. If shooting portraits, be prepared to provide neck braces for your subjects.