The Olympus VR-340 has a lot going for it and for very little money.
Inside its 1 inch thick, all-metal casing is a 10x f3.0-5.9 24-240mm lens and a 16-megapixel CCD sensor with sensor-shift image stabilization. On back you get a high-res 3-inch LCD and a one-touch record button for capturing 720p HD movies.
Shooting options are made for snapshooters with Olympus' iAuto scene recognition that determines the best settings based on 30 scene types; Program Auto for some extra control over your results; 14 scene modes; and seven of Olympus' Magic Filters including Pop Art, Pin Hole, and Drawing.
Also included are Beauty and Makeup modes for softening skin, smoothing wrinkles and blemishes, and more unusual options like whitening teeth, lifting cheek bones, and adding eyeshadow.
The Olympus VR-340 is available for less than $150, which makes it one of the least expensive 10x zoom ultracompacts on the market.