Digital Cameras 2013

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Olympus SP-320
Olympus SP-320

Hey! You should know that this product has been discontinued. Here are our current recommended cameras in the Point and Shoot Digital Cameras category.

Olympus SP-320

We've given the SP-320 a grade of C.

Editor's Review

Olympus must have gotten a deal on 7.1 megapixel sensors, because the SP-320 is one of three new cameras that has them. Still, each has its own set of unique features. The biggest feature of the SP-320 has to be the price. For around $299, the average user can full automatic and manual controls and a pretty large sensor. The drawbacks? The body is somewhat bulky. It's not an ultracompact, and if you're going for control and power at the expense of size, you might be better off looking into higher end prosumer products. Frankly, it's pretty gnarly looking, with a bubbly, bumpy casing and less-than-flattering graphite-black finish.


  • 7.1 megapixels
  • 3x optical zoom
  • auto and manual focus
  • auto and manual exposure
  • ISO 64-800
  • JPEG file format
  • 2.5" LCD
  • Part Number: SP-320
  • UPC: 050332157958
  • Release Date: Jan 30, 2006

Shop for SP-320 Accessories

Olympus SP-320 Reviews

Olympus SP-320 Reviews by Digital Camera-HQ Users

  • 1.0 out of 5
Battery Life is absolutely awful!!!! (Amber — 12/20/2009)

I've tried out the best batteries available and they still only last like 5-7 minutes. It takes beautiful pictures, but you only get to take like 3-5 before the batteries die. I wouldn't recommend it.

  • 4.0 out of 5
Zoom Error about 6 times in the last year (2009) (Bob Christie — 11/27/2009)

Was always able to solve the zoom error by toggling the zoom nib back and forth when turning to camera on. Took several trys but would finally correct itself. Today (11/25/2009) I tried for about an hour then looked on the web to see all of zoom error problems that would not correct. The strange angle comment gave me an idea. I pushed the on button. While it was whirring, I tapped the outside of the camera case against my hand while holding the zoom nib open. It worked.. Give it a try and see if you get lucky.. Maybe you can revive your $300 paperweight..

  • 3.0 out of 5
Slow speed: Great shots (Shawn — 12/27/2008)

This camera has all the bells and whistles built into it. The only 2 drawbacks are the slow processing speed and the use of XD instead of SD. Using the XD card, you are limited to 2 Gigabytes of external memory. Not enough for a week vacation in Mexico or Hawaii. And, the slow processing speed of each picture makes it hard to get those great action shots that come unexpectedly.

  • 1.0 out of 5
not good at all! (Jen — 07/10/2008)

From the day I bought it I got a battery error even after I've put brand new batteries in it. Now I've got a zoom error, so the camera is useless! I bought my mother a Kodak and spent far less on her camera and it has better zoom and takes far better pictures, not to mention her batteries last much much longer. My mother-in-law used to have an Olympus (which is why I bought this one) and I found out after the fact that she had several of the same problems with her camera (different model).

  • 2.0 out of 5
not bad until it breaks "zoom error" (Judd — 10/12/2007)

I got the "zoom error". Camera is now a paperweight. Olympus will fix for $85 plus sales tax for my state plus shipping.

I enjoyed the pictures that this camera takes during the day. However, night is near impossible (unless it is a stationary object and camera is on a tripod).

Lesson of the day..... don't by this camera, there are too many alternatives.

  • 5.0 out of 5
yes (Abby — 06/12/2007)

its amazing and i love it. it holds a lot of pictures and it amazing

  • 1.0 out of 5
I should have known it was too good to be true (John Tessano — 05/16/2007)

I looked at the ratings before buying this camera and thought it was a good deal, but now I'm having second thoughts. I see the ratings on this camera have gone down the toilet. The battery life is poor, it doesn't shoot good pictures at night, and I received the dreaded "zoom error" message and now the camera lens won't retract and the camera is non-functional. Hopefully Olympus will honor the warranty, but I'm not holding my breath.

  • 1.0 out of 5
Buyer Beware (Dave Laakso — 04/14/2007)

This camera looks great, has lots of features, is inexpensive, and will eventually give you a fatal error disabling the camera completely. The zoom lens on the camera will eventually not retract completely, jamming in the open position at a strange angle and indicate a "zoom error" on the viewing screen. There is no fixing this problem. You can see that a number of people have had this error if you search the internet. The delay between the time you depress the button and the actual taking of the picture is extraordinarily long and the camera has virtually no capability of taking pictures at night, even in "Night" mode.

  • 1.0 out of 5
Do not buy this camera, I know it's cheap but.. (James — 01/14/2007)

Even using DuracellPowerPix batteries, they are drained so fast. Quality is below average indoors and outdoors. Long delays between snapshots, where's the extra power going if batteries are going this fast ? As of today there are no firmware updates from Olympus. Maybe the SP-350 fixed the 320's problems. My Pentax Optio 5 mp was 20 times better but more money. I'll never buy Olympus again.

  • 2.0 out of 5
Save your money (Thomas Eberhart — 01/04/2007)

Hopefully I can help some of you save some money by purchasing a different camera. Yes, the camera has lots of features but the quality of the output is not very good especially indoors where accurate color reproduction is close to impossible. Digital stabilization is misleading with this camera. I compared this to a Coolpix and a Cybershot and the results were night and day. The competition blows this camera away. The customer support line is helpful but they really provide very little help beyond what the manual provides. Also the onscreen menus are very tedious and not user friendly. Battery life is laughable (I've never had to budget for batteries before). Note as of this writing the camera is no longer manufactured which doesn't suprise me. Use a one time use camera from Fuji if you want decent pictures rather than this camera.

  • 1.0 out of 5
Ripped off! Stay away, warning.... (Ten Ox — 11/25/2006)

Despite the false advertising, the shutter lag is long enough to miss a good percentage of your shots. You may eventually get good at timing the precise moment and catch more smiles, but it was billed as having minimal s.lag — it's too much lag!

It's billed as having "Digital Image Stabilization Mode for capturing crisp, clear pictures - free from the blur sometimes caused by camera shake or moving subjects - with high ISO sensitivity and fast shutter speed." to paraphrase Olympus and quote steves-digicams. Both are vague or misleading about this: Image stabilization works by mechanically moving either the sensor or some lens elements to counteract camera movement. This camera instead adjusts the sensor to be more light sensitive a faster shuttter speed will capture images with less camera or subject movement. That is NOT SOME FORM OF STABILIZATION!!! IT'S MISLEADING TO SAY IT IS A FORM OF STABILIZATION!!! IT IS FALSE ADVERTISING INTENDED TO MISLEAD CONSUMERS!!! This is Olympus. Stay away! You have been warned.


  • 5.0 out of 5
LOVE IT (Todd — 11/15/2006)

Love the - Camera. Works well. Great Features.

  • 4.0 out of 5
Great pictures... (Greg — 11/13/2006)

Friends were impressed by the quality compared to cameras they were using...Could be a little less bulky...

  • 4.0 out of 5
Great pictures... (Greg — 11/13/2006)

Friends were impressed by the picture quality compared to cameras they were using...Could be a little less bulky...

  • 5.0 out of 5
Great camera, perfect pictures, good price! (Allisha — 11/06/2006)

I did tons of research before buying a digital camera. The Olympus SP-320 was the only digital camera that had every feature I was looking for (the three main features I wanted were image stabilization, in-camera editing, and the option to turn off the LCD screen to preserve battery life). It was also within our price range....a 7.1 MP camera for $199.00 was fantastic! We have LOVED this camera. All pictures come out sharp and clear...landscape/nature pictures come out looking like postcards! We were told by a photo developer that if you have a 35MM camera that you're pleased with, you will be pleased with that brand's digital camera. We found that to be true. We own an Olympus 35MM camera, and we couldn't ask for better pictures. However, we wanted to upgrade to digital, and sticking to Olympus was one of the best decisions we've ever made.
Battery life is what you could expect for digital camera with a large LCD screen and in-camera editing (I edit ALL the time). We have rechargeable batteries, and we're always ready with another set of batteries. It doesn't give you much warning before it goes dead, but that hasn't posed a big problem yet.
I would recommend this camera to anyone! Of course, my husband and I aren't hard to please when it comes to electronics...just as long as they work. However, this camera has exceeded our expectations!

  • 2.0 out of 5
SP-320 Fallsly advertised (Bill Denbok — 11/05/2006)

All that I've read about the SP-310 and its supposedly upgraded mate the SP-320 seems true except for its battery life. The camera takes beautiful pictures but its battery life is unacceptable. An Olympic representative admitted that the camera needs a full 3 volts to operate properly. This is only available from lithium or li-ion rechargeable batteries. I would not recommend it.

  • 4.0 out of 5
Olympus sp320...Awesome camera! (dana — 08/28/2006)

Great camera with alot of settings that make each picture turn out great determining what setting is used. Awesome picture quality in broad sun light and low light nighgt shots, and with the editor you can take away redness, crop, and add text with diff. size and colors to your photo!!

  • 2.0 out of 5
Long delay, inconsistent shots (Meredith Schiffer — 08/13/2006)

I bought this camera because I was looking for good pictures at a decent price (for fear of my son breaking the camera in the not so distant future). The great reviews and the $!99 price tag sold me on this one.

What disappointed me the most about this camera was the delay, which is even slower than my 3 year old Canon s45. Regardless of how well the pictures come out printed, it doesn't matter if you miss the shot!

I'll also add that in my brief testing of the camera, a higher percentage of shots came out blurry than with the Canon (I tried the auto setting as well as a variety of the scenes). I'm not a professional, and some may chalk it up to user error, but I didn't have this problem with my old camera.

So, you may ask why get rid of the old got the dreaded E18 error and has since been retired. The Olympus is going back today in exchange for something else!

  • 5.0 out of 5
Excellent camera (anonymous — 07/18/2006)

I have only had this camera for 2 days,but i must say that i love it!The picture quality is great and the nearly unlimited features are great.And for the price and quality this is too good of a deal too turn down.

  • 5.0 out of 5
Love it - has everything! (anonymous — 07/18/2006)

I've had it a couple months and still have not tried all the settings, but the more I use it, the more I'm pleased with the purchase. Takes great pics in just auto mode and I love the style as it is easier to handle than the flat cameras due to the small "bump". Still small enough to fit in a pocket or small bag. Is also easy to edit/crop and perform other techniques, either on camera or with photo program. Love it!

  • 5.0 out of 5
its an exellent camera! (anonymous — 07/18/2006)

its just an awesome camera,pictures are exellent and the manual optiones take very good photos, im very happy with it, and it also makes greats records i recomend it to everyone who wantes a great gamera

  • 5.0 out of 5
Great camera (anonymous — 07/18/2006)

I have used this camera several times in the last 3 weeks. Pictures are great! I have not tried all the different settings, but have been very pleased with using the auto setting.

  • 5.0 out of 5
Value,performance, options,read the manual ,view the cd/rom (david — 05/24/2006)

I am a diecent hobbyist photographer, working globally and shooting thousands of picts per year. No camera is perfect, especially at a bargain price point but this baby is a fab value. Read the manual ,view the CD, realise the options are unreal,practice .It is overwhelming,the reviews do not tell all the features and are space /time limited by publisher.
BEST options are full manual, scene opts, Bulb,7.1 meg. antishake,ez menu, favorite opts storage in one button,many options, menu extensive. Price/Office Max had older 310 on sale w/256 card, bag, batteries, charger, tripod,etc... for 200$ BUT GAVE ME 320 BECAUSE OUT OF STOCK....bought 1mg card on sale swapped 356 for 5$ more(WOW)Last camera(dig) Nikon 4.0 this blows it away... progress in design ,lower costing of components, and fierce com pition = consumer is king...would like greater zoom but can add tele adapters for wide-tele and underwater at fair pricing....5 star value.also larger monitor is plus,colors real,low noise,does not push ISO which increases noise, fast start, shot to shot speed medium not the fastest but none of the non SLR types are,if you are used to manual (me Nikon) nothing will beat speed or flexability of multi lens use BUT if you are traveling all over by motorcycle and space is at a premium, go "D" ,this one has fab value.