Olympus SP-560 UZ review: Olympus SP-560 UZ

In our lab tests, the SP-560UZ far surpassed its slow predecessor but otherwise showed middling performance; it's responsive enough to shoot without much trouble, but it feels sluggish at times. After a 2.4-second wait from power-on to first shot, the camera could record a new JPEG every 2.1 seconds with the onboard flash turned off. With the flash enabled, that wait bumped up to 2.5 seconds between shots. RAW shooting was quite slow, capturing a single uncompressed picture every 13.5 seconds, though that's not abnormal for a non-SLR. RAW shooting is a welcome feature on any non-SLR camera, but the extra long shot-to-shot time definitely limits its usefulness. The shutter lagged a slightly sluggish 0.6 seconds with our high-contrast target, and 1.5 seconds with our low-contrast target. In burst mode, the camera captured 11 full-resolution JPEGs in 9.7 seconds for an average rate of 1.1 frames per second. The camera also features a high-speed burst mode that can shoot 15 still photos a second, though it can only record at 1280 x 960 or lower resolution, and doesn't refocus between shots.

If you want a camera with an extremely long lens for less than $500, the Olympus SP-560UZ is one of only a few choices available by retail. The Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H9 has a mere 15x optical zoom, but its slightly nicer pictures offset its slightly shorter lens. Otherwise, you'll need to invest in a digital SLR with a very long lens, and together they can cost a lot more.

Find out more about how we test digtal cameras.

Shooting speed (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Typical shot-to-shot time  
Time to first shot  
Shutter lag (typical)  
Canon PowerShot S5 IS
Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H9
Olympus SP-560 UZ
Nikon Coolpix P5100
Olympus SP-550UZ

Typical continuous-shooting speed (in frames per second)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)

What you'll pay

    Pricing is currently unavailable.

    Editors' Top PicksSee All


    Join the discussion

    Conversation powered by Livefyre

    Where to Buy

    Olympus SP-560 UZ

    Part Number: 226085
    Pricing is currently unavailable.

    Quick Specifications See All

    • Digital camera type Full body
    • Optical Zoom 18 x
    • Optical Sensor Type CCD
    • Sensor Resolution 8.0 Megapixel
      8.0 Megapixel
    • Image Stabilizer optical (image sensor shift mechanism)
    • Lens 27 - 486mm F/2.8
    • Optical Sensor Size 1/2.3"