As a point and shoot camera, the Z-120 is capable of delivering fine images without much input from the user. Many of my test shots were done using the Snapshot mode, in order to mimic the average point and shoot user. Color saturation, contrast, and sharpness all look good in most shooting situations. Noise at low ISO settings is not really noticeable and doesn't become too bad until ISO 400, where the noise itself isn't so objectionable but loss of sharpness and detail is apparent. The inclusion of manual controls is great, giving advanced users the ability to take over control from the camera, and many other controls such as flash intensity and audio recording are also included. The video quality is also good, though as with most any digital camera you shouldn't plan on replacing your regular video camera yet. The Z-120 can be powered by alkaline, NiMh, or Lithium AA batteries. I feel the use of AA batteries is a good thing, as it means power is only as far away as your nearest store. On the other hand, battery life is shorter with AA batteries than it would be with a dedicated rechargeable battery. I managed about 135 images before draining the batteries, and that included a fair amount of flash, the LCD was on for every shot, and a lot of playback time as well.
- Very quick to power on and off
- Compact and weighs only 6.6oz with batteries
- Well built all metal case
- Numerous manual controls and special effect modes (B&W, Sepia, etc)
- Auto focus and shutter release are very quick under normal lighting conditions
- Colors, sharpness, and contrast look good at Normal setting
- Low noise at lower ISOs
- Auto White Balance and Auto Exposure modes generally give good results
- Long exposures up to 60 seconds possible - test shot at 4 seconds showed an acceptable amount of noise
- Video recordings are good quality (at highest quality setting)
- Anti Shake feature boosts sensitivity for higher ISO when in very low light, reducing blur and camera shake
The Casio Exilim Z-120 recieves a
- Viewfinder very small, a bit hard to use
- ISO 400 noise and loss of detail obvious
- Auto white balance sometimes too cold, mostly when light tones / white objects dominate the scene
- Auto Exposure often blows out highlights in scenes with high contrast
- Macro focus doesn't get close enough
- Flash a bit narrow in it's coverage
- LCD screen resolution a little low
- Anti Shake feature creates a lot of noise in images (due to higher ISO), loss of detail.
The Z-120 isn't perfect, but it is a solid performer in the compact digital market. As of this review you would be hard pressed to find a better camera at this price point with such a high resolution, very good image quality, and full manual controls in such a small package.