The Bottom Line
The good news with the Kodak EasyShare M580 is that its image quality is outstanding. With its 14 megapixels of resolution, the M580 shoots sharp and bright photos that you can print at large sizes.
Now the bad news. My Kodak EasyShare M580 review reveals that this camera's response times -- especially its shot to shot delays and shutter lag -- may cause some problems with shooting fast-moving subjects. The M580 does offer a burst mode to help with these problems, which is nice.
Bottom line: If you're shooting nature photos and want a sub-$200 option, the M580's image quality is tough to match in this price range.
- Outstanding image quality
- Good mix of manual control and automatic features
- Interesting body colors
- Lens fully retracts when camera is powered down
- Easy to manage and sort photos in the camera
- Shot to shot delays are poor
- Shutter lag can be a problem at times
- Menu structure takes some getting used to
- "Mode" button and shutter button are too close together
- Resolution: 14 megapixels
- Optical zoom: 8X (28-224mm)
- LCD: 3.0-inch, 230,000 pixels
- Maximum image size: 4288 x 3216 pixels
- Battery: Rechargeable Li-ion
- Dimensions: 2.3 x 4.0 x 1.0 inches
- Weight: 5.3 ounces (no battery)
- Image sensor: CCD 1/2.3 in.
- Movie mode: HD (1280x720) or VGA (640x480)
Guide Review - Kodak EasyShare M580 Review
The image quality in the Kodak M580 is among the best you'll find in a sub-$200 camera. The photos I shot with my test unit during my Kodak M580 review were vibrant, sharp, and colorful, even using the camera's fully automatic "Smart Capture" mode.
The M580 produced nice results in all types of lighting conditions, too. Compared to other cameras in this price range, the M580's results with flash photography were very good. Macro photos were sharp and clear.
You can shoot in Smart Capture mode, in a partially manual mode, or you can use scene modes, all of which yield good images. You also can shoot in sepia, black and white, or "bright" color modes for some special effects.
The M580's response times were a disappointment, especially considering how good the camera's image quality is. Shutter lag is a real problem, especially if you're trying to shoot a subject that is moving around. You will miss some spontaneous photos with the M580.
Shot to shot delays were an even bigger problem for the M580. After shooting a photo, it took a few seconds for the camera to be ready to shoot again. This issue will again cause you to miss some spontaneous photos. Kodak did include a burst mode with this model, which allows you to shoot several photos in a row, but the shot to shot delays were especially frustrating.
Even for a camera in the sub-$200 price range, the M580's response times are still a bit below average, but less-than-desired response times are commonly a problem in low-priced cameras.
The M580's 8X optical zoom lens is very nice and adds to the camera's value for nature photography.
I liked the look and feel of the M580. It has some interesting body colors: Pink, blue, and purple. It measures 1 inch in thickness and will fit in a pocket, and the lens fully retracts inside the camera body when the unit is powered down, which is a great feature. It was comfortable for me to hold, and it had a sturdy feel to it. The M580 might be a little bigger than some photographers want, but I thought the body size and shape worked well.
When reviewing photos, you have many interesting options, including a keyword tag or a "favorite" tag. As you shoot certain photos, you can mark them for sharing on Web sites, like Facebook. Having these types of sorting options available "in camera" should make it easier to organize your images later when you download them to a computer.
Learning to use the M580's menu structures will take some practice. Certain menu items and commands are not available unless you're in a particular shooting mode, which was a little confusing at first. The mode button is in an odd place, too, which left me searching for the user guide.
The best thing about the M580 is that it has an image quality and a few features that you'd expect to find in a more expensive camera. (Shop around, and you may find this model for less than $170.) If you can live with this model's drawbacks, the M580 will reward you with great images.