Aperture Priority

Aperture priority is where you designate the aperture and the camera calculates the best shutter speed, if the exposure is outside of the cameras range (either over or under exposing) the aperture will flash red on the LCD screen. However used properly Aperture Priority can be invaluable as it has a direct effect on depth of field (the distance in front and behind the focal point which will be in focus when taking the shot). Example of aperture priority (simple example F11 produces more depth of field than F2.8) - for more read my digital photography glossary:

Aperture Priority mode:
F2.8, 1/60s, ISO100

Aperture Priority mode:
F11, 1/2s, ISO100
(some camera shake)

Two positive things about the C2000Z and Aperture Priority mode, firstly the fast lens means that you have a wider range of apertures (even at full tele aperture is a fast F2.8), secondly the C2000Z gives you a very wide choice of apertures:

F2.0, F2.2, F2.5, F2.8, F3.2, F3.6, F4.0, F4.5, F5.0, F5.6, F6.3, F7, F8, F9, F10, F11

This means that as a photographer you get a very large amount of flexibility to choose the appropriate aperture (or to experiment!).

Shutter Priority

Shutter priority is where you designate the shutter speed and the camera calculates the best aperture, if the exposure is outside of the cameras range (either over or under exposing) the shutter speed will flash on the LCD screen. In the example below shutter priority was used to set a slower exposure of 1/10 seconds to produce the blurred effect of the water in the fountain - for more read my digital photography glossary:

Shutter Priority mode:
1/320s, F2.8, ISO100

Shutter Priority mode:
1/10s, F11, ISO100

Again the C2000Z offers a wide range of shutter speeds (speeds slower than 1/2s must be "overridden" by holding down the OK button):

16s, 8s, 4s, 2s, 1s, 1/2s, 1/2.5s, 1/3s, 1/4s, 1/5s, 1/6s, 1/8s, 1/10s, 1/13s, 1/15s, 1/20s, 1/25s, 1/30s, 1/40s, 1/50s, 1/60s, 1/80s, 1/100s, 1/125s, 1/160s, 1/200s, 1/250s, 1/320s, 1/400s, 1/500s, 1/650s, 1/800s

Manual Focus

The manual focus function of the C2000Z is kind of limited, you can only lock the focus at either 2.5m (8ft) or infinity which is a little disappointing for a digital camera touted with "manual features". A diagram in the manual (below) explains that at wide angle (F2.0/2.8) at 2.5m focus everything from 1.1m to infinity will be in focus, at F11 that's 0.35m to infinity. However, at the tele end things are not so rosy and I really would like to have seen a more flexible manual focus feature on the C2000Z.

Internal Flash

The internal flash is powerful and well measured with generally very good flash results, it really does go off with a big bright POP indicating the large amount of light it's producing.

Skin Tone test Macro Flash
Skin tone test, taken from about 30cm away, produced a good natural skintone, not overly warm but not "pasty" either. Macro Flash, the C2000Z shows that it can control the flash output very accurately. This shot taken from about 20cm is both well lit (but not washed out), sharp and well colour balanced.
Macro Flash  
Another Macro Flash test, this one an attempt to fool the camera with a reflective surface but again the C2000Z coped very well.  

Digital Zoom

Readers of my reviews will know I'm not a huge fan of digital zoom as it's often a badly implemented and seldom used (by owners). On top of the C2000Z's 3x optical zoom, it also has a range of digital zooms. These zoom levels are 1.6x, 2x and 2.5x. When digitally zooming In the C2000Z it drops down to SQ resolution (the currently selected SQ resolution, which in the case of the examples below that was 1024 x 768.

No digital zoom 1.6x  digital zoom 2x digital zoom 2.5x digital zoom
No digital zoom
1.6x digital zoom
2x digital zoom
2.5x digital zoom

When "blowing up" the cropped sections of the image the C2000Z does no interpolation of the pixels which means that the results are simply a blocky "zoomed" version of what you'd get if you weren't using digital zoom, the example below demonstrates that often (if you have the storage space) it's better to shoot at high quality and crop/zoom the required portion of the image in a good photo package such as Photoshop which uses Bicubic interpolation between pixels.

Digital zoom 2.5x in camera.
(no interpolation between pixels)
Cropped / zoomed using Photoshop.
(bicubic interpolation)