|-Extremely affordable digital camera -Strong color reproduction -Sensor is unexpectedly sensitive to light (much better than the 250 Max ISO rating would indicate) -Lightweight and portable body design -Well sized buttons -Simple menu structure with occasional live feed backgrounds|
|-No optical zoom -No burst or continuous shooting setting -Cannot alter white balance or ISO settings -Lens placed far off to the lens – with centered flash will cast extreme shadows -Poor labeling of menu subsections -Small LCD screen with very low resolution -minimal manual control options|
The Olympus D-425 is specifically tailored for the novice user who is looking for an affordable and likely introductory digital camera. The D-425 can be found online for an average price of around US $120.00. There are few to no manual control options available outside of flash and EV compensation settings and a full user manual is not available unless the user wishes to run it from the included CD-ROM. The lack of user controls can be seen as understandable when considering the intended market, however the placement of a full manual on a CD-ROM means that more complex or layered sections of the camera will remain inaccessible to users who (like their camera) do not want to be bothered with a convoluted computerized interface. The layout of the camera itself is sparse and straightforward, providing users with the essentials and sparing them extraneous controls that might just get in the way. The menu is intuitive and graphically-reliant but might take a little time for users to familiarize themselves with the various icons. Fortunately, the D-425 contains brief explanations of the various modes to accompany the graphics. Unfortunately, the D-425 contains neither optical zoom nor a burst mode for continuous shooting. These are basic inclusions on most digital cameras and this lack handicaps users substantially. Digital zoom is provided as some form of compensation; however, it will just become an empty temptation and result in decreased quality.
If a consumer is looking to grow as a photographer and become more adept with digital cameras, the D-425 will not be a strong candidate; it has a limited palette of user control beyond the point-and-shoot rubric. Many of the automatic settings for the camera will not be enough in the long run when more complicated shots and lighting situations are encountered. However if basic snapshots are desired, the user will find the D-425 to be a sufficient and affordable alternative (although the price point seems to be the only logical draw to the camera). Consumers willing to spend just a little more money will be able to gain a lot in the way of control and image quality. For under $200 (USD), there are many offerings by various manufacturers that include optical zoom lenses, burst modes for continuous shooting, and manually adjustable settings that can be used without sacrificing automatic exposure or point-and-shoot functionality.