Olympus SP-800UZ Review

by Andy Stanton Reads (2,332)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Image/Video Quality
    • 7
    • Features
    • 7
    • Design / Ease of Use
    • 6
    • Performance
    • 6
    • Total Score:
    • 6.50
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10


  • Pros

    • Good build quality
    • Versatile lens
    • Accurate color reproduction
  • Cons

    • Blurry images at telephoto
    • Slow shot-to-shot time
    • AF problems in dim light

Quick Take

The SP-800UZ is a versatile tool with a 30x optical zoom lens. Enthusiasts will be put off by the lack of a viewfinder and manual controls, and images at full telephoto are often blurry.

The Olympus SP-800UZ is an SLR-like ultrazoom which, like most of the cameras in its class, has a large lens and built-up right hand grip. However, unlike many ultrazooms, which are often referred to as “hybrid” cameras because they have many of the functions of a DSLR in a smaller package, the SP-800UZ is strictly a point and shoot, as it lacks a viewfinder, mode dial and manual control over shutter speed and aperture.

Olympus SP800 Sample Image

This is a departure for Olympus, as its previous SLR-like ultrazooms have all been of the classic “hybrid” type. But even though the SP-800UZ lacks some of the attributes of other ultrazooms, it does have a very long zoom lens with a focal length of 28-840mm (35mm equivalent), or 30x optical zoom. The only other ultrazoom currently available with a 30x optical zoom is the Fuji HS10, covering a focal range from 24-720mm.

Olympus SP800 Sample Image
Wide Angle, 28mm

Olympus SP800 Sample Image
Telephoto, 840mm

In my “First Look,” which appeared a couple of weeks ago, I said I was pleased with certain aspects of the camera but noticed some problems. Now that I’ve had a chance to thoroughly explore the SP-800UZ, let’s see if my initial impressions have been borne out.



All content posted on TechnologyGuide is granted to TechnologyGuide with electronic publishing rights in perpetuity, as all content posted on this site becomes a part of the community.