Kodak EasyShare C743
Budget cameras are a dime a dozen these days, and without high-quality photos or unique capabilities, it's easy for these sub-$200 shooters to fall between the cracks. Of course, without a major flaw it's hard for a sub-$200 camera to really screw up, either. The Kodak EasyShare C743 is one such mediocre camera. It doesn't offer any notable benefits, but its flaws, while irritating, aren't enough to render it completely useless.
The C743's 6.8-ounce, blocky body feels bulky and cheap. The light and flimsy plastic shell doesn't feel very sturdy, and its thick profile makes it a bit too chunky to fit into a pocket. Fortunately, the control layout is standard and relatively comfortable, with well-spaced and accessible buttons.
Like most budget cameras, the C743's feature set delivers just the basics. With a standard 3x zoom lens (37mm to 111mm-equivalent), a 30fps VGA movie mode, and a handful of image presets, the C743 bears all the standard features of a low-end point-and-shoot camera. Photography controls are predictably scarce, with only a few white balance and ISO selections and no advanced exposure settings. Fortunately, a handy in-camera editing program lets users crop and tweak their images after they're shot. Finally, an optical viewfinder proves to be a welcome surprise on the budget shooter, offering an alternative to the camera's slightly smaller than usual 2.4-inch LCD.
The C743 proved to be a bit sluggish in our tests, but was still responsive enough to still be useful. After a 3-second wake-up time, the camera snapped off a shot every 2.1 seconds. With the flash enabled, that time increased to 3 seconds between every shot. The shutter response was also decent, lagging only 0.7 seconds in bright light and 1.2 seconds in low light. Burst mode was quick but short, firing off three shots in just 1.3 seconds for a rate of 2.3 frames per second.