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Old Dec 17, 2004, 1:41 PM   #1
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I have a olympus 4040 zoom. love it. my cousin wants a digital camera. the 4040s are going for 200-300 or more on ebay and the 3030s are below 100. he is in college so cant afford alot. but the stats for the 3030 look close to the same as my 4040 so i was going to have him get a 3030 on ebay. the only difference i can see is the 3030 is 3mp and the 4040 is 4mp. is there any other big differences? I cant find any that stand out. everything looks the same to me.. but im just a noob so what to i know :?
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Old Dec 18, 2004, 7:50 AM   #2
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JMichael wrote:
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I have a olympus 4040 zoom. love it. my cousin wants a digital camera. the 4040s are going for 200-300 or more on ebay and the 3030s are below 100. he is in college so cant afford alot. but the stats for the 3030 look close to the same as my 4040 so i was going to have him get a 3030 on ebay. the only difference i can see is the 3030 is 3mp and the 4040 is 4mp. is there any other big differences? I cant find any that stand out. everything looks the same to me.. but im just a noob so what to i know :?
The nicest thing about your C-4040z is the lens. It's rated at f/1.8-2.6 (f/1.8 is the largest aperture available at it's wide angle lens setting, and f/2.6 is the largest aperture available at it's full zoom setting).

Most other models, including the C-3030z, don't start out until f/2.8. So, the lens on your C-4040z is more than twice as bright at it's wide angle setting. This allows shutter speeds more thantwice as fast for the same lighting conditions and ISO speeds -- which can help to reduce motion blur in low light. That's one of the reasons it's in high demand on the used market (for users that want to take existing light photos without a flash).

When shopping for lenses, the aperture scale (in one stop increments) goes f/1.0, f/1.4, f/2.0, f/2.8, f/4.0, f/5.6, f/8.0, f/11, f/16, f/22... With each one stop move to a smaller aperture (represented by larger f/stop numbers), you will need shutter speeds twice as long for proper exposure.

The 3MP model that Olympus sold with a brighter lens is the C-3040z (same lens as your C-4040z).

There is also a difference in focal lengths between the lenses on the C-3030z and C-4040z. The C-3030z has a 35mm equivalent focal range of 32-96mm and the C-3040z has a 35mm equivalent focal range of 35-105mm. So, the C-3030z has a wider angle of view at it's wide angle setting (some users may prefer this).

There are more differences, too. For example, the C-4040z has noise reduction longer exposures to reduce hot pixels. The older C-3030z (or even the C-3040z) does not have noise reduction. There are also differences in image formats available (for example, the C-3030z does not support TIFF).



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Old Dec 18, 2004, 3:36 PM   #3
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so do you think he should go after a 3040 or a 3030. he is using it alot at school. and when we go to races and stuff. the 3030 is cheaper so i have been telling him to get that..
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Old Dec 18, 2004, 3:49 PM   #4
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JMichael wrote:
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so do you think he should go after a 3040 or a 3030. he is using it alot at school. and when we go to races and stuff. the 3030 is cheaper so i have been telling him to get that..
I don't know him well enough to make a recommendation on a camera model, much less narrow it down between two old camera models that could have problems if you buy a used one (stuck pixels, dead pixels, worn out switches, etc.). ;-) I just wanted to point out the lens brightness differences since you asked what was different between them.

Personally, if I needed a low cost model with a brighter lens for existing light, I might consider a model like the Olympus C-3040z (despite it's drawbacks). However, I probably would not consider a model like the C-3030z (it wouldn't really have any significant advantages over some of the newer models for my needs, and I wouldn't want to risk getting one that's defective/worn out).

I'd read the reviews here for cameras you consider, keeping in mind that image quality would be compared to other similar models at the time of the reviews (and a camera like the C-3030z was released 4 years ago).

I'd also keep in mind that SmartMedia, as used in the C-3030z and C-3040z, is an obsolete memory format (no new cameras use it), and is not available in sizes greater than 128mb. In addition, older models like the C-3030z and C-3040z don't have features like noise reduction (so, you'll get lots of hot pixels on longer exposures).

He'll need to decide if one of these older models would be a better fit for his needs or not, and weigh the benefits of a lower price versus the risk of buying an older model with no warranty.
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