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Video: Hands-on with the Olympus Tough Cam TG-610

We got a chance for some thorough hands-on time with the Olympus TG-610, the company’s newest tough cam introduced at CES earlier this year. The $300 TG-610 comes equipped with all the features your standard action-bound digital cameras do, but here’s a quick rundown of its specs for reference’s sake:

  • Shockproof up to five feet
  • Waterproof up to 16 feet (just to clarify, you’ll notice in the video Sally says 33 feet – that’s the TG-810, we were actually using the TG-610).
  • Freezeproof up to -10°C
  • 3-inch LCD display
  • 14 megapixels
  • Dual image stabilization
  • 3D (including 3D underwater capabilities, something unique to many tough cams), art filters, and in-camera editing
  • Weighs 6.7 ounces
  • 5x optical zoom; 4x digital zoom

And if you don’t believe the fine print, check out the video below to see some of our own underwater and snow-related experiences with the device.

As for complaints, we don’t have too many, but non-action shooting with the camera might not suffice for serious photographers. Of course, the TG-610 isn’t intended to be used for your studio shots and its selling point obviously isn’t how great its portrait capabilities are. Still, outdoor enthusiasts might find themselves bringing a DSLR and the tough cam instead of being able to find absolutely everything they want in the TG-610. That said, what tough cam in this price range can? The art filters and scene settings do offer a little extra something to your stills, and otherwise the video quality makes the camera more than usable for your particularly active shots.

To give you an idea of stills quality though, take a look below. The top two shots feature the pinhole art filter just to give you an idea of its effect (and yes, those are tough cams encased in ice sculptures – which Olympus told us would still work after being freed). All in all, the TG-610 is nothing to sneeze at, and vacationers and outdoorsmen and women alike will be pleased by its indestructibility and quick focus and flash functions – just don’t get any fanciful ideas of replacing your more capable and breakable cameras with this tough cam.

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