Noise is visible in images taken at the base ISO100 when viewed at 100% on a computer screen, which is probably the price paid for squeezing so many photosites onto a small sensor. Many recent cameras have overcome this issue by using rear illuminated sensor technology, which locates the sensor's circuitry out of the light path. Images taken at settings up to ISO200 will still make a good A4 print.
As the sensitivity is increased and noise reduction does its work, fine details become softened. By ISO800, images are noticeably softer than those taken at lower settings, but levels of chroma noise are kept in check. ISO1600 should be reserved for small print sizes as images lack detail and chroma noise becomes much more visible.
Focusing is quick in good light and noticeably slower in dark conditions, as you might expect. A bright orange AF illuminator helps in the dark when shooting at close quarters, although it is so bright it can result in squinty faces when taking portraits after dark. The touch shutter function is quite pleasant to use, although there is a noticeable pause between touching the screen and the image being taken. Care also needs to be take to hold the camera steady when using this feature, as camera shake can become an issue when jabbing at the screen with a finger or the stylus.
Exposures are well balanced, rarely needing compensation and auto white balance performs well outdoors, in daylight or shade. Under artificial light it is advised to take advantage of the various preset white balance options, as the automatic setting doesn't do much to correct the cast present under incandescent or fluorescent lighting.