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Showing 1-10 of 269 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 300 reviews
on May 21, 2012
I am very pleased with this camera. Most point-and-shoot pictures come out great and operating it is intuitive. The different scene and filter settings are great.

Scene settings

* portrait - for portrait-style shots
* landscape - slightly emphasizes blues and greens
* night scene - for shooting illuminated night scenes at a slower shutter speed
* night portrait - for shooting subjects with illuminated backgrounds
* action - for fast-moving action shots without blurring
* indoor - for shooting indoors
* candle- for shooting in low-light settings (e.g., candlelight)
* self-portrait - for taking a picture of yourself while holding the camera
* sunset - slightly emphasizes the reds and yellows
* fireworks - shoots fireworks at night with a slower shutter speed
* cuisine - for still life photography
* documents - for text
* beach & snow - for snowing landscapes, mountains, and seascapes
* pet - for animals

I am still getting used to to using the portrait, night, and fireworks scenes. The portrait scene mode doesn't seem to do well indoors and the night and fireworks scenes have such a slow shutter speed that a slight movement gives the image tracers. The automatic setting takes great indoor pictures most of the time, but the pictures seem to come out better when I use the indoor scene option.

The VR 340 also has a burst feature under the program auto setting, which is great for taking several action shots and sorting out the best ones later. When it is set on high speed, the flash doesn't take. This makes taking indoor pictures using the burst a little challenging. You can, however, use a flash in the single burst mode. Burst mode works well outdoors.

Close-up pictures have amazingly crisp detail and the zoom is great. The VR 340 is compact, light-weight, and easy to carry around.

Fun stuff - this camera also has seven magic settings:

* pop art - exaggerates the colors
* pin-hole - gives a black fog-like circular border around the photo
* fish eye - makes the image close-up in the center then tapers out
* drawing - makes the image look like a coloring page
* soft focus - softens the hard details in a picture; gives pictures a sort of angelic effect
* punk - washes the image out with a pink and black contrast
* sparkle - anything that shines is exaggerated with a twinkling effect

Although many of these effects can be done with editing programs, it is kind of cool to see them beforehand. The effect is also instant; what you see on the screen before you take the shot is what you get afterward.

I have been disappointed with cameras before, but for it's size, weight, and price; this is a great camera if you want to take close-to-professional quality pictures just about anywhere and be creative, too.

Update: May 15, 2015 - I am still very happy with this camera. It continues to take reliable pictures and video.
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11 comment| 134 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 16, 2012
I'm not sure why this camera does not have many, many more 5 star reviews. I have been trying for years to find a point and shoot camera that is in a nice price range that took good pictures. I have purchased many and have returned many. I tried again as this Olympus model seemed to have what I wanted. I liked the fact that it had some playful features like the fisheye, soft focus, pinhole, etc. I have had a lot of fun playing around with those. But, even without those features I would have bought this camera and paid more for it. It takes the most beautiful, clear, professional looking photos. I've posted a few here on this Amazon review. Truthfully, the photos showing here speak volumes on the quality of photos produced from this camera. There are plenty of things to learn with the camera regarding its settings and whatnot. But, it did not take me long to learn the basics. Some of the other settings like 'beauty fix' I have not tried yet but am sure will be just an additional great feature to this camera. Honestly, I am tempted to buy another one just in case it gets discontinued. It's so hard to find a camera that does this well in this price range. I've paid several hundred dollars more on cameras in the past and received photos without quality this high. I'm impressed and it's about time.

To add, the image stabilization is so good I can be moving around alot and the photo still comes out clear. I cannot say enough about this camera!
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on July 15, 2013
Am super happy with this camera, I have several camera's ranging from very expensive with several lenses, tripods, filters etc to small SLR's this little guy takes the best photos, took photos of fireworks on the 4th, best I ever got, take lots of nature photos, great birds, a bumble bee in a flower, did I mention I really love it, never having had a digital camera before took me a while to get accustomed but now, its with me all the time.
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on March 30, 2015
I spent way too much time reading reviews and trying to find the perfect on-the-go camera, but I finally found it. Features I was looking for: a rechargeable battery, a more than 3X or 5X zoom, a battery that didn't fall out when you removed the SD card (thus erasing the date and time and other settings). This camera has all of that. Easy to use, and some of the effects are fun to play with. A couple of cons are that you can't zoom while you're shooting in video mode, and it seems to only let you do one minute of video at a time, tho I haven't explored the settings enough yet to see if that can be changed. I actually bought this camera for my partner, but he didn't like the red, and I liked this camera better than my old one, so I bought a slightly different model (the VR-370) in black for him. So, minus one star for the video issues.
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on February 26, 2014
I like these cameras and have more than one, as I must take 200 pictures a day in my job as a Dog Vacay host. (They are sent to the sent to dogs' families at least once a day if not more often). I have 2 so if the battery needs charging, I don't miss any cuteness.

The one design flaw on this camera, in my opinion, was that the door to the battery/memory compartment is plastic, and flimsy, and the pressure from the sim card or battery can cause it to bow, sometimes causing the camera to turn itself off, reset, or malfunction.

I learned to take pictures holding it shut with my thumb.

Only recently, I realized that the fault may be mine. The battery is held in place by a little plastic catch. The sim card, although it does not have a visible catch, WILL lock in place if one pushes it gently down. Just push down carefully and you can hear a little click.

Now I don't know what to do with my thumb!
Mainly posting in case anyone like me hurries and has this problem, which is really a non-problem.

To see examples of the kinds of photo, you can always look at the Facebook page called Ravenhill. I use several settings, including party, sports, food, and pets.

UPDATE 2014
The two cameras sadly have somehow "hit a wall" and now break frequently. They are covered by manufacturer's warranty. One can send them in for repair.

Notes on that process:
1. If you pay to ship them, there are seperate steps you must take to be reimbursed, and it won't be soon.
2. Once you send them, you should check on their progress. I sent one and it sat in some kind of limbo for over a month. Expecting it back any day for weeks, I went to check the status and it said "More information needed". They don't let you KNOW they need more information. Just let it sit, more or less forever.
3. Each time, you have to send in proof of purchase. When I sent in one of the cameras for the third time, it got stuck in limbo waiting for proof of purchase, which I had already provided twice before. When I called on the phone and pointed this out, they said not to worry, and went on with the process.
4. They don't really care about your experience. After sending a camera in 3 times, and it breaking again less than 24 hours after repair #2 and two days after repair #3, their "solution" continues to be the exact same form letter telling me to send it in for repairs....same one I used the first time. Mind you, this is happening with not one, but both cameras.

Okay for about a year, then an assortment of issues, usually to do with lens retraction and/or the LCD screen.

Cameras not bad, but the whole repair thing is a drag. They honor their warranty, but only seem to do the bare minimum. I think they just clean, and have never actually replaced any of the parts involved. I can hardly believe this thing about repairing the same camera over and over can be cost effective.

This week, silver camera is dead and red camera has developed a black dot inside the lens housing, right near the center of the screen. since I really can't be without both, I am shooting around the black spot. Sometimes I can place it over black things, sometimes I can crop it. Crying, "Out! Out, damned spot!" has not worked. It's like a new challenge....as if it is not hard enough to get good pictures. Anyway, I really like the cameras. Will probably just buy a third one and hope for the best, because I have not really found anything comparable with similar reviews and features.
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on March 5, 2013
I am involved in real estate and use this camera to take many indoor photos of houses (kitchens, baths, special features, etc.). The flash works well and my photos are very clear. There are several image sizes to choose from including 1280 x 960 which provides a very clear image and yet the photos are still easy to send via email. Many of the smaller point and shoot cameras lack this image size and require you to use either 640 x 480 (too blurry) or a larger size which results in large files which are difficult to send via email. The camera is very fast and starts instantly when you press the on button. Similarly, taking a photo is also very fast with no lag once you hit the shoot button. The images are fairly wide angle and not narrow and boxy. Most of the negative reviews of this camera seem to be from people who didn't read the instructions and/or didn't take the time to find which settings work best for their needs. After I played around with the settings and tried various combinations, I had no problems with blurry indoor photos which some have complained about. This is an inexpensive small camera and the performance is quite good for the price. I would recommend this camera to anyone who wants good photos but doesn't want to spend a lot of money. My only complaint is that it didn't come with a memory card and I had to provide my own.
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on January 24, 2015
This camera is great if you have the time to take great images.

This camera has the ability to take quality images if you participate in small considerations that will contribute to a better image. If you stand still or have a tripod then this will result in a sharper image, if you take advantage of switching around shooting modes then this will result in optimizing features in the camera for the type of environment around you, or if you know when to actually zoom and how much then you will have better cropped and focused images. The list can go on but if you made a connection, then you know all this can be true for any budget compact camera.

In short if you are on the go from day to night this camera may not be the best option if you do not take advantage of actually using this camera’s features correctly. I noticed that I did not use the night mode at night resulting in very muddy images. I also failed to stand still before the camera finished focusing resulting in blurry images.

I think if you are able to take the time to switch around modes and use accessories thoughtfully then this is a great camera. I took this camera on a trip, selected “automatic” before leaving for the trip, and thought this would cover all times of the day as well as environments. However, my images did not turn out so well. During the day the images turned out too bright and during the night too noisy. If you are on the go then I would choose another camera that may better fit your needs such as one with better image stabilization, faster shutter lag, and so forth. Or the other option is to fully familiarize yourself with this camera before leaving for a trip as I did not do. This way you know how to get to all settings/shooting modes, access them faster as well as know when and how to use them.
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on November 20, 2013
I am not very experienced with digital cameras and have always just used the camera on my current phone. So, take that into account when reading this review. I found it very difficult to sift through the plethora of instructions for this camera (downloaded from the Internet). I also found it difficult to determine the correct settings for shooting a pic. There is a "Help" feature on the phone, which helped somewhat. I made the mistake of not really practicing on this camera before taking it on a European vacation; however, I muddled through and found the camera takes very good pictures, colors are vivid and pictures developed well.

I obviously am doing something incorrectly with the shutter speed as I could not snap fast consecutive pictures, which was a real disappointment. I still cannot determine how to do this.

Additionally, the battery does not last long and does not make it through a day of sightseeing. I had to use my iPhone camera as a backup many times. The price, however, was excellent.
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VINE VOICEon July 1, 2013
I was recently at a gathering where I wanted to hand off my camera for someone to take my picture. They had difficulty with it, and so started the search for a simple camera that I would also enjoy.

This Olympus has really fit the bill. One of the FIRST things I noticed with many point and shoots is that the optical zoom is often limited to 5x for entry level cameras. This Olympus has a 10x optical zoom that really just blew me away once I first got my hands on it. Standing at the edge of our porch, I took a picture of the same tree from wide open, to 5x, to 10x. Great zoom for such a compact camera. And the display on the back of the VR-340 is nice and clear, giving you a good representation of the picture you've taken.

I did try the camera at an evening baseball game. In lower light, some of the action was blurred. I'm still running on automatic, so maybe with some tweaking, I can get better results.

At the end of the day, I'm happy with the performance and feature set for the money I paid(less than a hundred). Of note, you do need to bring your own SD card to the party. That's fine by me, because I was assured of a Class 10 card since I bought it. Additionally, they say that the best camera is the one that's with you. While I love my DSLR, this compact point and shoot is easily pocketable and does a great job of capturing those moments. Not perfect, but very, very good.
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on September 23, 2014
High points:

10x optical zoom is more than enough for me in most situations; letting me zoom in very close before any decrease in picture quality happens.

Photo resolution is great. Mine is very obviously using all 16 mp and getting a lot of detail. When I use the rather effective super macro setting you can count the scales around a lizard's eye or the barbs on a wasp's foot.

Video resolution seems great. I like the designated video button that acts as an alternative to the shutter button.

The casing is sturdy and smooth even if it's not metal. Some people said it was a tad big, but I didn't have a problem with size, it fits nicely in all my pockets without snagging.

A good number of manual settings on program to play with, however...

Low Points:

The manual features do not include shutter speed or aperture, which are annoying to omit on a camera with that kind of hardware. While you can change your iso, those features are automatically set depending on brightness preference and scene setting.

The lack of shutter speed control is made worse by some motion blur issues. It takes a very bright day or flash turned on before you can stop worrying about blur with it off the tripod.

Not really an issue as I don't care either way, but the "artistic effects" could all be done easily on your computer.

Conclusion:

Awesome or meh, depending on what you need it for.
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