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Casio Exilim Zoom EX-Z77: We're ready for our close-up

The 7.2-megapixel Casio Exilim Zoom EX-Z77 is a standard compact camera with one interesting feature: a video mode that optimises footage for easy uploading to YouTube

Just what is it that makes the Casio Exilim Zoom EX-Z77 the coolest camera on the block? YouTube! It shoots your videos in the MPEG-4 H.264 format, optimised to YouTube-friendly size and frame rate. Then YouTube uploader software bundled with the camera makes it incredibly easy to upload videos of sanctimonious pop stars falling off stage.

The EX-Z77 is otherwise a textbook compact camera: 7.2 megapixels, 66mm (2.6-inch) LCD display and 3x optical zoom. Our model is in a tasteful but dull brushed silver, but there are much funkier black, blue and, yes, pink versions. The headline feature is the YouTube capture mode, which we decided to test right here at Crave Towers.

As always in these situations, our first impulse was to think what gadgets we could destroy on film. Then we thought better of it, and decided to show you the Crave writing process, but our subeditors weren't keen on having their cold-hearted brutality exposed for all to see.

So instead here's a quick look around the breakout area, where we kick back and relax after a hard day of, well, trying to destroy gadgets. Watch out for the sandwich man.

The video was shot and uploaded within 15 minutes of opening the box, although most of that time was spent looking for YouTube mode. On the front is that promised YouTube sticker, but we'd have preferred a big red YouTube button -- YouTube capture mode is buried at the very bottom of the scene mode menu, at number 40 out of 42.

The whole process took no time at all and very little effort (and it shows in the production values). We'll be filming ourselves acting out Star Wars Kid in no time. -Rich Trenholm