Olympus’s Stylus 780 packs a 7.1 megapixel sensor, a 5x optical zoom, a crisp 2.5-inch LCD, and face-detection technology into a weatherproof camera body that is slightly larger but more stylish than the Sony DSC-W80’s.
Like the W80, the Stylus sports dual image-stabilization, pairing mechanical optic adjustments with optional faster ISO speeds when excessive hand shake is detected or lighting conditions are poor. Results were excellent in good lighting situations, but unlike the W80, this cam also performed well when lighting was less than ideal.
The 780 also includes shadow adjustment and panorama scene modes, which aren’t offered on either the W80 or the FujiFilm F40fd (reviewed here). Shadow adjustment can be activated with a simple button press and will automatically change exposures to compensate for areas of high contrast or backlighting.
The 780’s noise reduction also performed acceptably, delivering occasionally serviceable results up to ISO 1600 and reliably usable images at sub-800 ISO. The macro modes were also noteworthy for delivering nice, sharp images. Color saturation was good, as well; outdoor images, particularly, were bright and vivid.
Overall, however, image quality was not quite up to the standards set by Fuji’s F40fd, but if you live in harsh climates or like to shoot pictures in the rain, the Stylus 780 is a rock-solid choice.
Weatherproof; newb-friendly help system; shadow adjustment; good color saturation.