Casio Exilim EX-ZR15

Casio EX ZR18
Casio EXILIM EX ZR18 feels the need for speed - by Casio

Casio decided to field a speed demon in its new Exilim EX-ZR15 camera. Some of the specs will raise eyebrows.

From turning it on until it’s ready to shoot, Casio says 0.99 seconds, about the time it takes to lift it into shooting position. To go along with that the auto focus system only needs 0.13 seconds to get a lock and the time between shots is 0.29 seconds.

If you need a point-and-shoot camera that’s fast, it’s going to be hard to beat those specs.

The sporty little speedster packs a 9.7-megapixel 1/2.3 in CMOS sensor (reported as 14-megapixel in some sources) behind a 7x optical zoom. Nothing in the initial specs about image stabilization, one hopes for at least some stabilization for the price point.

As with most point-and-shoots it’s short on manual controls but has some interesting software gadgets that include a depth of field setting that shoots multiple pictures and meshes them together to produce a bokeh-like effect.

It’s also got in-camera software HDR for photos and video as well as a 360 degree panorama mode.

Surprisingly the video is full HD at 30 fps and has a built-in flash.

All that in a camera that weighs in at just 176 grams with the battery and data card installed. Not bad specs if a tad ambitious on the pricing. Casio says look for availability later this month in Japan with prices starting in the $500 range.