Kyocera says that its $1395 Finecam S5 is the world’s smallest 5-megapixel camera. The size is indeed wonderful, but the quality of the camera’s images leaves much to be desired.
The Finecam S5’s small, stainless-steel case is its finest feature: despite weighing just 200g, it feels well-made and substantial, though I prefer the sliding lens safeguards of other cameras to the S5’s black metal curtain protector.
This camera captures large files (over 2MB at its best setting), which usually translates into lots of image detail. But many of our test images showed extensive graininess, and they weren’t as sharp as you might expect. Pictures taken with Canon’s PowerShot G3 (which costs $400 more than the S5, but has a resolution of only 4 megapixels) looked much sharper.
In fairness, the S5 is a snapshot model not meant to compete with enthusiast cameras. It provides few controls beyond a simple white-balance calibrator and settings for sharpness and colour intensity (chroma). More important, it lacks a low-light focusing aid, and indoor photos came out fuzzy, even with flash. However, the battery was hardy.
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