Olympus XZ-2 iHS
12 megapixel CMOS sensor; 4x optical zoom with 28mm wide-angle, f1.8-2.5; 1080/30p HD video capture with stereo sound; 3-inch swivel toucscreen LCD with 920,000 dots; Dual-purpose mode dial for analog or digital control; Image stabilization; RAW capture; Manual modes; Lithium-ion battery
A relatively dramatic upgrade from the aging but excellent XZ-1, the XZ-2 gains the iHS moniker that accompanies Olympus's latest high-speed cameras. This is due to the switch to a 12 megapixel CMOS sensor that should offer better high ISO performance than the XZ-1 and allows for 1080/30p video recording. The lens hasn't changed at all from the 28-112mm f1.8-2.5 found on the XZ-1, but Olympus has substantially increased both the size and weight of the new camera. This is in part due to the addition of a new control ring that users can switch between analog and digital control. The analog setting can modify zoom manually in click stops while the digital setting smoothly controls shooting functions like aperture or shutter speed. Panasonic could really learn a thing about controls for their next LX camera from this kind of implementation. The XZ-2's size change could also be due to the addition of a swiveling touchscreen LCD screen as well as the ability to add a screw-on grip. We aren't enthused about the larger form factor, honestly, and the $599 asking price seems silly when the RX100 can be had for just as much.