The Olympus FE-110 is an entry-level digital
camera for those most particularly interested
only in an affordable snapshooter. If you are
into photography, and want to learn and grow in
it, the Olympus FE-110 does not have the features
or image quality you need for that.
But if you are looking for an affordable present
for a young child or an easy-to-use point-and-shoot
for someone who wants to use it for their blogs,
we would recommend that you look into the Olympus
FE-110 instead of a "no-name" brand.
Besides getting Olympus support, you would also
get a quality Olympus lens, a well-built body,
easy menu structure and peace of mind.
The Olympus FE-110 is not a low-light camera.
When there's enough light, the AF works well enough.
But in low-light, though the camera indicates
that the AF has locked, it is not accurate.
This is especially true in Super Macro mode,
where getting a sharp picture is very difficult
to achieve, with the AF hunting a lot and passing
the in-focus point to eventually stopping at an
out-of-focus point. One reason is because not
enough light can reach the subject with the lens
that close. For example, I just could not get
the Super Macro picture in the Image Quality section
to lock focus properly (focus on the left eye
and eyelid) until I shone a light onto the subject.
An AF-assist Illuminator is sorely missing here.
But, as the picture shows, when it does have
enough light and contrast, focus is tack sharp.
The onboard flash is on the weak side and will
work well only for portraits.
Concerning the ISO range, I was not able to coax
the camera to use ISO 320 even when the light
level was so low that an underexposure resulted.
The lowest ISO I've been able to obtain is ISO
250, but unfortunately the picture was out of
The lens slides in and out and zooms pretty loudly.
It's not fast in startup, shot to shot, and playback
times, and shutter lag is slight if you pre-focus
but about 1 sec. including AF.
(38mm, 35mm equivalent)
At 2.8x optical zoom only, that's not much zoom,
So I decided to test out the 4x digital zoom (which
I usually don't bother with at all). Combined
with optical zoom, the total zoom is 11x. The
zoom is seamless, with a slight pause between
the optical and digital zoom, so you need to be
aware of not accidentally moving into digital
zoom. The reason is because the quality of the
image quickly degrades when you start using digital
zoom [ Optical
vs. Digital Zoom ]. Rule of thumb is that,
when using digital zoom, you may get away with
it when printing at small size or for Web display;
just don't expect to be able to enlarge and print
The file numbering resets eveytime after you
download and erase all images. This is a nuisance
if you do that a number of times in the same day
(as I do), requiring either the creation of a
new folder or renaming the images.
When you launch Olympus Master 1.3.1, it searches
for any updates and offers to update to a new
version. I click yes and the update installation
fails, so I recommend that you do not update this
way. Probably some conflict with my anti-virus
or firewall software. Anyway, the Olympus Master
is not able to recognize my review FE-110 camera,
so I simply use drag-and-drop in Windows Explorer,
and then index in Olympus Master.
The Olympus FE-110 does not have a viewfinder
and has only a small 1.5 in. LCD monitor. With
130,000 pixels resolution, it is very clear with
a fast enough refresh rate for a smooth display.
However, in low-light, the display will skip.
There is no gain-up in low-light.
The rubber Terminal Cover swings wide open, which
makes it easy to connect the USB/AV cables.
The Olympus Master software is very user-friendly
and displays all info on one screen, including
EXIF info and Histogram. You can do basic image
editing: Rotate, Crop, Instant Fix, Red-Eye, Color
As usual for Olympus, the Olympus FE-110 only
has a printed Quick Start Guide and Basic Instruction
Manual. The Advanced Manual is on CD in pdf format
The camera has about 28MB of internal memory
data that will store about 7 SHQ (2560 x 1920
pixels) images or 22 HQ (2560 x 1920 pixels) images;
this is not bad in a pinch. The 28MB internal
memory will hold about 1 min. 25 sec. of HQ (320x240)
movie or 5 min. 40 sec. of SQ (160x120) movie.
A 512MB xD-Picture Card will hold approx. 140
SHQ (2560 x 1920 pixels) images, 415 HQ (2560
x 1920 pixels) or approx. 26 min. 30 sec. of HQ
(320x240) movie. We recommend at least 512MB or
even 1GB, if you can afford it.
Many readers ask about a first-time camera for
a young son or daughter they want to start introducing
to photography. Instead of buying a "no-name"
brand, check out the Olympus FE-110. It's
as affordable, you get an Olympus-branded lens,
and even though the image quality is not the best
(check out the Olympus
FE-110 Photo Gallery and decide for yourself
if they are good enough for your needs), they
are nonetheless consistent. Compact and light,
it is also point-and-shoot simple to use for a