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Design

Again, from the back it would be easy to confuse the C-2100UZ with a C-2020Z, except for the larger storage compartment / hand grip and electronic viewfinder. From the side there are echoes of the C-2500L with the long barrel containing that 10x optical zoom lens. Nice touches can be found in the on / off / reset control (neat) and the rubberised hand grip (real rubber with good grip, not that plastic fake stuff).

If you compare the C-2100UZ with the new E-100RS you'll notice that in body design (and lens) they're virtually identical, colour and additional rubber grips on the E-100RS are the only distinguishing differences.

Picking the camera up it's certainly lighter than you expect, it's not LIGHT but at only 540 g (19 oz) it's at least 2/3rd the weight of other similarly specified digital cameras. Balance is nice, the hand grip is deep and because of the rubber very steady it fits your palm very comfortably and the small rectangular protrusion below the lens barrel is great for gripping between thumb and forefinger of your left hand for more steadiness.

C-2100UZ compared to C-2020Z C-2100UZ "in hand" (surprisingly comfortable)


Rear LCD Display

The rear LCD appears to be identical to that found on the C-2020Z and C-3030Z, a 1.8" TFT 114,000 pixel with a thick plastic protective cover. Shame they didn't use an anti-reflective coating over this cover..

In true Olympus style there's plenty of information overlaid in record mode (if you choose) with clear use of symbols and provision of photographic information (detailed below).


(detailed information only in record mode)


Top Information LCD

The top LCD provides a repeat of information shown on the rear LCD (if on / detail option selected) along with other items of information. Olympus refer to this display as the "Control Panel".

A full breakdown of all information shown on this display is detailed below.


Viewfinder

The viewfinder on the C-2100UZ is of the new electronic LCD type, behind the viewfinder window is a 0.556" LCD repeating the same image / video feed that the main rear LCD would display. You can only have one of these LCD on at any one time and can switch between the two by pressing the DISPLAY button. There's a dioptre adjustment wheel on the left side of the viewfinder for glasses wearers.

In use I didn't have any major problems with the viewfinder, it's bright and perfectly usable, far better than the standard optical viewfinder but still no substitute for a true TTL optical viewfinder.


Battery Compartment

In the base of the cameras hand grip is the door to the same battery compartment found on the C-3030Z, able to accept two of Olympus's CR-V3 batteries or four AA's (I recommend NiMH rechargeable batteries).

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