Olympus Camedia C-4040 Zoom review: Olympus Camedia C-4040 Zoom

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CNET Editors' Rating

3.5 stars Very good
Review Date:
Updated on:

The Good Good image quality; broad exposure latitude; long battery life.

The Bad Too menu intensive; a bit pricey.

The Bottom Line While it's a great 4-megapixel camera, the C-4040 is a little pricey, especially if you don't really need the high resolution.

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With a price of almost $1,000, the Olympus C-4040 Zoom might appear to be targeted toward the deep-pocketed amateur photographer. In reality, though, the camera is better suited to point-and-shooters who won't play around too much with the camera's manual settings and who simply care about getting good photos under the widest variety of conditions. Fortunately, you can now find this model for a decent price. With a price of almost $1,000, the Olympus C-4040 Zoom might appear to be targeted toward the deep-pocketed amateur photographer. In reality, though, the camera is better suited to point-and-shooters who won't play around too much with the camera's manual settings and who simply care about getting good photos under the widest variety of conditions. Fortunately, you can now find this model for a decent price.

Familiar design
Olympus has stuck with the same boxy, mini-SLR design of its 3-megapixel C-3040 Zoom. The C-4040 Zoom isn't as sleek or compact as the upcoming 4-megapixel D-40 model, but this 14.9-ounce camera feels solid and comfortable in your hand.

We had no complaints about the C-4040 Zoom's ergonomics, but we were a little disappointed with the camera's LCD, which offers acceptable performance but has a few glitches. Not only did it update jerkily during motion capture and when we were changing subjects, but it also displayed interference when we were shooting very bright scenes.

The camera's streamlined menu system is definitely an improvement over those found on earlier Olympus high-end models, but it's still a little too much work to change image-quality settings; switch among Manual, Aperture-Priority, and Shutter-Priority modes; and use the self-timer. You can set up a shortcut to a menu item that you frequently access so that you can, for example, press a button and go directly to the resolution menu. However, that's just one shortcut.

While it sometimes takes a little digging to get to the camera's more advanced features, the C-4040 Zoom offers the wide range of features, including custom white balance and red/blue white-balance compensation, flash exposure compensation, spot and matrix metering, and automatic exposure bracketing. There's also a two-frame-per-second Burst mode, as well as a Movie mode that allows you to capture (at the highest-quality setting) up to 30 seconds' worth of low-resolution (320x240 pixels) QuickTime video on the included 16MB SmartMedia memory card.

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Where to Buy

MSRP: $899.95

See manufacturer website for availability.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Optical Zoom 3 x
  • Optical Sensor Type CCD
  • Sensor Resolution 4.1 Megapixel
  • Image Stabilizer none
  • Optical Sensor Size 1/1.8"