Olympus C-3030 Zoom review
I've been using my Oly3030 for about a year now. Taken thousands of pics with it and very happy with my purchase. I've gone on 2 trips and the photos that came out were generally very good.
Picture quality is very good. Everyone comments that the pictures are sharp and clear. Always shoot at the max resolution, and typically I get 80 shots on a 64MB card.
The camera's construction is solid. Feels very natural and not "plasticky". Can easily shoot even with one hand and still use the zoom. Other cameras like the Nikon 885 have an awkward zoom control location. Camera size is just right.
The camera itself is light, but having 4 AA batteries adds to the weight--so this is not for the person looking for a Canon Elph-sized camera. However having 4 AA extends the shooting time which is very good. I can usually shoot for a day with 4AA. I also have extra sets of AA Nickle Metal Hydrides - inexpensive at 4AA for $10 compared to the proprietary batteries other cameras use.
Indoor shots are good. Make sure you set the ISO to 400 instead of AUTO.
The LCD screen is great for framing the subject since the viewfinder is not accurate for framing. Set the camera to auto-power off so that it doesn't drain the batteries too fast when using the LCD. Plus the LCD screen is viewable at odd angles too, unlike the Nikon 885's lcd which only looks good viewing head-on.
Menus are understandable if you take the time to read the manual. Otherwise you can usually just point and shoot and let the camera handle it. Take the time to frame the photo with the LCD screen.
The flash is powerful enough for my use. I generally try to avoid using the flash and use natural light. Plus the camera has a connector for an external flash. Other cameras do not have an external connector.
Macro mode allows me to take clear closeups of flowers and insects.
Camera came with a free infrared remote was a bonus. It has come in handy. Other cameras don't come with this.
Can also take quicktime movies with sound. Other cameras did not have sound.
Lots of other options can be set if you ever want to. Very full featured but also simple to use.
Got my camera from buydig.com. Fast service - go it in about a week. Got it from their website with no problem, I heard their phone sales may be a bit pushy.
Recommended accessories for the Oly3030
64MB or 128MB Smartmedia card(s) - www.newegg.com has great prices. Got mine there.
AA NiMH rechargeable batteries. Got them at Target or BestBuy stores for about $10-12 for a pack of 4.
Maha rapid battery charger MH-C204F - best value for a rapid charger. Got it from www.nimhbattery.com (Thomas distributing).
Camera bag - Bestbuy has a huge selection. Protect your investment!!
If you're going on a long trip. Get an Imagebank to store your pics while on the road.
In summary, I'm very happy with my 3030. My friends who saw my photos like it too. One later got a Oly 3040, another bought a Oly 4040.