Nuggets: Kodak's DC3400 is easy as pie

Plenty of features and a funky menu make this two megapixel camera a pleasure to play with

No doubt about it, the Kodak DC3400 is designed to be fun, with its colourful menu and simple plastic controls. It's not the slimmest model we've ever seen -- in fact if it wasn't for the rounded rubber edges, it could pass for a three-tone grey mini house brick.

Don't be put off, though -- it's got enough features to hold its own against most other two megapixel models.

Like most models in its class, the DC3400 doesn't have many function buttons to confuse you with: all the user has to worry about is activating the flash and cycling between normal, landscape and macro (close-up) modes.

Everything else is accessed through the menu which makes it easier for a novice to get the hang of getting on with the photography.

Secondly, it's a very user-friendly menu. Lots of colour and cute little graphics help to take the worry out of changing the exposure or the white balance. This is all done through the LCD screen, which can also be used as a viewfinder. However, you're less likely to have to resort to the power-plundering LCD when snapping cos the folk at Kodak have included a decent optical viewfinder -- and even put it in the centre of the camera rather than banishing it to the far corner.

To conserve space, images can be saved at three different JPEG resolutions, and either at 1760x1168 or 896x592 pixels. This is useful, as you only get an 8MB CompactFlash card as standard (which will only hold around 12 1760x1168 images at top quality).

A 2X optical zoom lets you get closer to the action. While the zoom lens isn't exactly noisy, it does make an awful noise... like something you might hear in a 60's sci-fi TV movie. There's also a 3X digital zoom that will make your image look bigger but won't actually add any more detail.

Unlike Kodak's DC4800, you don't get a rechargeable battery. Instead four AA batteries are supplied. You also get cables for connecting to PC, Mac or TV, and Kodak's Picture Now photo-editing software which is good for delicate touchups like reducing red eye or colour balance.

  • Kodak DC3400

  • Two megapixel digital camera

  • £350 (inc VAT)

  • 450g (inc CF card and batteries), 133x54x76

  • Resolutions -- 1760x1168, 896x592

  • Image quality -- "best", "better", "good"

  • 2X optical zoom, 3X digital zoom

  • Optical viewfinder, LCD screen

  • Normal, macro, landscape settings

  • Automatic and fill flash, red-eye reducer

  • 4xAA batteries, 8MB CompactFlash card, USB cable supplied

  • www.kodak.co.uk


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