From time to time I'm asked to buy a simple digital camera for a friend or family member. I do that, spend 2-3 days putting it through its paces, and then — either pass it on to the new owner or return to the store (which happened twice so far).
The articles listed here are a result of some of those quick test sessions. There are very few of them, and they refer to camera models a good few years old; still, someone may find them (both articles and cameras) useful.
(All of these pieces were originally accessible directly and independently from my Photo page; I'm moving them here to reduce the clutter).
The Olympus D-580 (C-460, X-400): a small, inexpensive, simple to use digital camera, capable of delivering pleasing results. (Posted 2004)
The Olympus C-60Z: a tiny camera capable of satisfying both beginners and advanced amateurs looking for a pocketable model (see sample images). This was my wife's favorite camera at the time, and we were never able to find a proper replacement. (Posted 2004, updated 2009)
The Canon PowerShot A460: don't judge this camera by price alone; a nice surprise in a small and really cheap package. A separate page with image samples is also provided. (Posted 2007)
The next camera is not really a compact, and it was not so inexpensive at its time, but I decided to put the link here anyway:
Sony Mavica FD7 — one of the early digital cameras, when writing images to a diskette was the new, hot thing. The FD7 images, by the way, were not as good as its 0.3-megapixel (640×480) nominal resolution would indicate.