Concord Eye-Q 4360z

Quick look

Pocket-sized digital camera

Price: $199

Phone: 954-331-4200

Online: www.concord-camera.com

Concord Eye-Q 4360z

Henrik G. de Gyor

I'm 40 years old and still use the Pentax K-1000 camera my father bought used for my 16th birthday. Picking up a digital camera for the first time was a huge leap forward.

The first thing that struck me about the Concord Eye-Q 4360z from Concord Camera Corp. of Hollywood, Fla., was its size. Compared with the dimensions and heft of my Pentax, the Concord is small'at 100 mm by 61 mm by 38 mm'easily slipping into a shirt pocket.

There were several things I immediately liked about it. Getting started was easy. Both the Quick Start Guide and the more detailed user's manual were clear and walked me through setup with no glitches.

The camera is straightforward to use after that. You point, you shoot. The buttons for reviewing and deleting are quick and easy.

I took the camera to lunch with some friends who have a new baby, and we were all happy with the shots.

At 4 megapixels, the camera has a wide range of picture resolutions to choose from. The 16M internal memory will hold up to 52 pictures in Normal setting, which is the one I used. The company recommends this setting for snapshot-sized prints.

For larger prints, the camera has a Fine setting and can hold about 20 of those shots.

I did have problems lining up photos using the 1.5-inch TFT display, so I switched to the viewfinder. I was impressed that the viewfinder operated with the camera's 3X optical zoom, though not with the 6X digital zoom.

Downloading the photos to my PC was as simple as a few mouse clicks. Then I was off to a party to celebrate another friend's marriage. The camera continued to be easy to use, and the slide switch on the back made for quick reviews and deletions of photos.

But after about 16 photos, it ran into a common problem: The batteries began to fail.
The camera came with a battery charger and two rechargeable batteries. I followed the instructions and charged the batteries for 24 hours before using the camera again.

Perhaps this is why Concord sells the unit with a four-battery charger, so you can charge a couple extras.

Even with dead batteries, I was still able to retrieve the photos and download them to my PC.
Another shortcoming: The camera did great with shots in the 15- to 20-foot range, but beyond that photos seemed to lose their crispness. The few landscape shots I took came out soft and lacked pop.

The power situation was the biggest disappointment for me. It would make me hesitate to carry along this camera on a trip where I wouldn't have access to the battery charger every night.

In short, I'm not giving up my Pentax, but the Concord makes a fun backup.

About the Author

Nick Wakeman is the editor-in-chief of Washington Technology. Follow him on Twitter: @nick_wakeman.

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