Olympus SZ-20 review

We look under the hood of Olympus's latest super-zoom

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At £200 consumers are getting a healthy supply of contemporary features and high-end components for their cash. Although the SZ-20 may not offer everything in Olympus' technology library, what is does offer is a great deal of control and choice for creative novices at a good price. Although this may not suit a complete beginner it will definitely impress existing compact-owners looking to upgrade to a camera that provides an up-to-date feature set, larger pixel count, lengthier focal range and the ability to record impressive image results and full HD video.

We liked

The SZ-20 is an accessible camera that delivers exactly what an enthusiast photographer needs with a handful of exciting attributes thrown in, including: full HD video capture, eight creative filters, Smart Panorama and 3D mode.

We disliked

The camera fails to present detailed definition in several of the filter and special modes, which can make composition tricky. Elsewhere we were disappointed by the battery performance and high-speed continuous shooting results.

Tech Specs

Product TypeCompact Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution16 Megapixel
Wide AngleNo
Product FamilySZ
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC)
Image StabilizationDigital, Optical
Optical Zoom12.5x
Digital Zoom4x
Brand NameOlympus
FeaturesFace Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMPEG-4
Viewfinder TypeNo
Weight (Approximate)186 g
Image Sensor Size1/2.3" (6.16 mm x 4.62 mm)
Maximum Image Resolution4608 x 3456
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height64 mm
Width102.4 mm
Depth30.4 mm
Product SeriesSZ
Focal Length4.20 mm to 52.50 mm
Image FormatsJPEG
Focus ModesAuto
ManufacturerOlympus Corporation
Product ModelSZ-20
Product NameSZ-20 Compact Camera
Exposure Control

Program AE

Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberN4305992
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.olympus.co.uk
Marketing Information

Enhanced performance beyond the still image. Like every SZ Series compact, the SZ-20 is packed with Olympus technology that's seriously state-of-the-art, like the backlit CMOS sensor for low-noise shots in poor light and an impressive 12.5x super wide optical zoom. With 1080p Full HD Movie recording and 16 Megapixels, it's the must-have model for anyone who wants to live and shoot 24/7 - in perfect, pixel-rich quality, no compromises required. What's more the SZ-20 features a whole raft of innovations - from Smart Panorama, 3D still photo shooting, Eye-Fi card compatibility for automatic wireless uploading of images to a website or PC to a choice of eight Magic Filters, seven of which work with both Full HD movies and stills. For a camera in this category, that's yet another unique feature.

Package Contents
  • SZ-20 Compact Camera
  • LI-50B Lithium-Ion Battery
  • F-2AC AC Adapter
  • CB-USB6 USB Cable
  • CB-AVC3 Audio/Video Cable
  • Hand Strap
  • Instruction Manual
  • World Wide Warranty Card
  • CD-ROM
Limited Warranty2 Year