Kodak EasyShare Z740 Review
Operation and controls
The EasyShare concept is one Kodak has been pushing - and refining - for several years now. At its heart is a friendly user-interface and the ability - with the supplied software - to transfer and 'share' images with as little fuss as possible. And there's no doubt that as a point-and-shoot camera, the Z740 is supremely user-friendly, though the fairly comprehensive feature set will take a while for the target user to master.
Rear of camera
The majority of the Z740's controls are found on the rear, in a cluster to the right of the 1.8-inch LCD screen. Directly above the LCD we have the Info button (used to turn on and off the information overlay when shooting or reviewing) and the EVF/LCD switch. To the right of this are the zoom controls.
Next down is the bejeweled 'share' button, used to tag images for printing or emailing (using the supplied EasyShare software). Below this is the main mode dial. In the center is a small silver 'joystick', which replaces the more common arrow keys on most cameras and is used to navigate menus. I found this particularly fiddly, as it is all too easy to accidentally press it ('Enter') when you're trying to move up, down, left or right. Again, I'm sure this is something you'd eventually get used to. Then again the joystick really comes into its own in PASM modes where it allows you to control apertures, shutter speeds, ISO and AE compensation without ever going near a menu.
Finally, below the main mode dial are three buttons; review (switch to playback mode), menu (to activate on-screen menus) and delete.
Top of camera
|The top of the Z740 is home to the main power/mode switch (record, off, favorites), the pop-up flash and its switch, the shutter release and three buttons for flash mode, macro/infinity AF mode and burst mode.|
Display and menus
The Z740's user interface is as user friendly as you could ever hope for - despite the fairly hefty feature set. The menus are written in plain English with large, easily understood icons, meaning the manual is rarely needed when exploring the range of features. There are even little on-screen 'tips' to tell you a little about each exposure mode as you select it (though how much help it is to see 'Use for Aperture Priority settings' appear on-screen when switching to A is questionable). The main record mode screen is - when you're not in the fully automatic auto mode - rather cluttered, with a huge amount of information on display. What you do get, once you've mastered the controls, is the ability to change a lot of settings without having to enter menus, simply by selecting and changing them using the jog dial on the front of the grip. This approach means that experienced photographers have virtually all the control they need at their fingertips without once seeing a menu or leaving record mode.
|Here's the display in fully automatic mode, with the information overlay turned on. You can see at a glance your exposure mode, AE compensation setting, flash mode, picture size/quality, remaining frames and AF mode. The blue brackets indicate the AF area (in this case we're using the 3-area AF).||In P, A, S and M modes you get a lot more information - and more control. Moving the joystick highlights each of the available settings in turn (AE compensation, shutter speeds/apertures, ISO); press the joystick and push it up or down to make changes.|
|Half-press the shutter and the camera focuses, indicating the auto focus (AF) point and auto exposure (AE) settings chosen.||As you switch between the various modes a brief description appears on-screen. When you get sick of this 'feature' you can turn it off in the setup menu.|
|Turn the mode dial to SCN and press the menu button and you'll get access to 14 more scene modes (in addition to the portrait and sports settings on the dial itself). Each has a brief explanation of what it does and how to use it.||Pressing the menu button in record mode brings up the menus shown above. You use the joystick to move up and down the list, and press it to select a setting to change. Here you'll find options covering everything from self-timer to image size/quality, white balance, bracketing interval, metering and focus modes, and color/sharpness parameters. The last option in the list takes you to the setup menu.|
|In each case, pressing the joystick brings up a page of options with plain english descriptions, rather than incomprehensible icons.||Pressing the review button switches the camera to playback mode. Note that portrait images are rotated automatically.
Pressing the info button brings up a fairly comprehensive overlay of shooting information (shown above).
|Push the joystick down and you get a grid of 3x3 small thumbnail images (why, for consistency, this isn't activated by the zoom lever I do not know).||Push the zoom lever to the right and you can magnify the image up to 8x|
|Pressing the menu button in review mode brings up the usual array of options to protect (lock) images, watch slideshows and so on (deleting has its own button). You can also copy images to and from the internal memory/SD card and use albums (which have to be created when the camera is attached to the PC).||Pressing the 'Share' button allows you to tag images for printing or emailing, or designate them as 'favorites'.|
|Images can be tagged for emailing when transferred using the EasyShare software. All contacts need to be created on the PC (you can't do it in-camera).||You can set up in-camera 'albums' - though again, not using the Z740 itself (you have to use the supplied EasyShare software). If you transfer the images you shoot via the EasyShare software they are stored on your PC in the albums used in-camera.|
|One usual feature is 'favorites' - add an image as a favorite and next time you transfer your pictures to the PC a small (screen resolution) version will be copied back to the camera's internal memory so you can carry it with you at all times. Not sure how useful this is, but it's very 'Kodak'.||Last but not least is the setup menu (accessible from both record and playback modes). Here you can set the date/time and change basic camera behavior, including date stamping, orientation sensor (auto rotate), sounds and volume and digital zooming. It is also here that you'll find the command to format the card or internal memory.|
|Patrick Finds Inner Peace by ecastellon|
from Your best photo of the week!
|Forks by Kukla|
from Arranged everyday objects
The new iZugar 3.25mm F2.5 super fisheye lens offers an insane 220-degree angle of view. That means it can basically see behind itself... good luck keeping your feet out of the shot.
You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll remember that time you took a picture of the frozen pizza baking directions.
A Craigslist poster has discovered the worst possible way to photograph a car: taking pictures of pictures displayed on a cracked and scratched up smartphone screen.
With the iPhone X coming out soon, the title probably won't last, but the iPhone 8 Plus is officially the best smartphone camera DxOMark has ever tested, and the iPhone 8 is second.
Kodak's new Facebook Messenger chatbot is trying to bring back the 'Kodak Moment' by digging up your old social media photos and trying to sell you prints and custom coffee mugs.
Affinity Photo for iPad was touted as "the first full blown, truly professional photo editing tool to make its way onto the Apple tablet." This update makes it that much more convenient.
Yashica has released a new teaser video, and this one claims they'll be releasing an "unprecedented camera" in October on Kickstarter. Ready... set... speculate!
Storage solutions company Synology has just released its very first 6-bay NAS tower. Combined with the DX1215 expansion units, it can hold and control up to thirty drives.
We're always expanding our collection of product overview content, and we've just added videos for the Canon EOS 6D Mark II, the EOS Rebel SL2 and EOS M6.
The venerable Canon PowerShot G1 was announced seventeen years ago this week, marking the start of a line of enthusiast-focused compacts that's still alive and kicking.
Super macro photographer Can Tuncer captured these incredible close-ups of a single peacock feather using a special setup and three different microscope lenses.
After successfully crowdfunding the Biotar 75mm F1.5, Oprema Jena is at it again. This time they're bringing back the Biotar 58mm F2: the world's only lens with a 17-blade aperture.
Adobe's move to a subscription model is treating it very well indeed. The company has posted record revenue for the second quarter in a row, hauling in a mind-boggling $1.84 billion.
More details have emerged about the potential sale of Blackstone's 45% stake in iconic camera brand Leica.
Popular mobile editing app Snapseed just got a major update that includes a new interface and 11 new presets for both Android and iOS, as well as adding the Perspective tool to the iOS version.
It might sound like a strange idea, but taking macro photos of boiling water can actually result in some really cool photographs. A good photo experiment for a rainy day.
The database was created to "break with the narrow lens through which history… has been recorded" by equipping those who commission photography with "the resources to discover photographers of color available for assignments.
Lensbaby has released two new optics for their special "optic swap system." The Lensbaby Sweet 80 Optic gives you that trademark sweet spot of focus, while the Creative Bokeh optic gives you 9 different drop in aperture plate options to play with.
TechCrunch has already posted their review of the upcoming iPhone 8 (not yet the iPhone X), and they're calling it "a look into the augmented future of photography."
Affinity Photo is a $50 photo editing software with no subscriptions. That's it – pay for it once and you're done. And we think it's actually pretty darn good.
Instagram is currently testing a major change to the app's profile layout: replacing the 3-photo across grid with a 4-photo grid... and some users are NOT taking the news well.
A report by USSRPhoto is shedding some light on the return of the famed Zenit camera brand. It seems the full-frame mirrorless camera they're working on will be made in part by Leica using components from the Leica SL.
According to a reliable Korean report, Samsung is developing a smartphone sensor that's capable of super slow motion. Translation: Samsung's next batch of Galaxy smartphones may be able to shoot 1,000fps.
This simple photograph of a seahorse and Q-tip has taken the internet by storm. We spoke to photographer Justin Hofman about how it was captured, and what it means to him.
After a massive leak last week, Profoto has officially debuted the Profoto A1: the company's first on-camera flash system that they're calling "the world's smallest studio flash."
"When the first hyperfocal distance charts were designed, someone decided that an acceptably sharp background contained some blur — enough to notice in a medium-sized print [...] After that point, nearly every other hyperfocal chart followed suit."
The Canon EOS Rebel SL2 (also known as the EOS 200D) is the company's impressively compact entry-level DSLR. Packing a 24MP APS-C sensor, DIGIC 7 processor and Dual Pixel AF, it promises a lot of bang for the buck. And while not mind-blowing, it handles most tasks very well.
Correct these four common composition mistakes and your photos will be more balanced, tell a better story, and lead your viewer's eye where you want it to go.
The rugged, compact 360° action camera Kodak unveiled at Photokina in 2016, the Kodak PixPro Orbit 360, is finally available in the United States.
iOS 11 launches tomorrow, and it'll save all of your pictures in a new high efficiency image format called HEIC. Fortunately, there's now a converter that will let you turn those photos back into JPEGs.