When you’re lolling about under a palapa in Cabo, margarita in hand, the last thing you need is to be fiddling around with an expensive, complicated camera whose dozens of buttons will only confuse your tequila-addled brain. What you want is the FujiFilm Finepix A330, a 3.2-megapixel camera whose simplicity of operation makes it an ideal choice for vacationers and others with more to worry about than exposure settings.
The A330, like the Olympus D-580, has a sliding lens cover that protects the camera’s optics; it doubles as a power switch. The top of the camera has nothing but the shutter button, and the back has a zoom control, a macro button, flash button, and three simple control buttons. You operate the zoom by toggling it up and down (instead of left to right), which is a little unusual, not to mention hard to do with one hand.
If you want more control over photo settings, you’ll need to go through the on-screen menus, which can be cumbersome. But in most cases, the A330 will produce fine photos in its automatic mode. Low-light shots are a special forte, with good focus, color, and illumination where other cameras produce only murky shots.
After the sun goes down, when the party gets really interesting, you’ll be glad to have the A330’s ability to shoot 340 x 240-pixel AVI movies at 10 fps. And although it can’t record sound, you can always overdub a funny soundtrack later. -Dylan Tweney
Best Feature: Extreme simplicity
Worst Feature: Unappealing plastic body
FujiFilm Finepix A330
Weight: 6.8 ounces
Size: 4.1 x 2.5 x 1.5 inches
Specs: 3.2 megapixels; 3x optical zoom; 1.5-inch LCD; 340 x 240-pixel, 10 fps AVI video; integrated flash; xD slot (16MB card included); USB 1.1; video-out port; two AA batteries required
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Link: FujiFilm Finepix A330
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