Fast f2.0 lens; tap controls
Smallish buttons; slow zooming
Given Olympus all but created the ruggedised compact camera segment with its Tough range of cameras, it’s no surprise that the TG-1 is an exceptionally solid performer.
The 12-megapixel snapper offers best-in-class ruggedness, from its 2m shockproof rating and its 12m waterproof rating to its inbuilt GPS and ability to withstand temperatures of -10 degrees Celsius. It can even handle 100kg of weight on its tough little body.
What really makes the TG-1 stand out is its f2.0 lens.
With such a fast lens on board, taking photos in challenging conditions – whether they be low-light or underwater – becomes significantly easier. There’s no need to crank up the ISO to get decent images without the flash, and the results are much more detailed than some of the other compacts on test.
The fast f2.0 lens helps take clearer photos, but unlike a DSLR it doesn’t quite allow for the same depth of field as a bigger camera would allow. Still, image quality for a compact this size is impressive.
Olympus has also included its tap control functionality in the TG-1, which allows you to cycle through menus and switch between shooting and playback modes simply by tapping different sides of the camera. This is a brilliant idea for situations when navigating the cameras controls are a bit tougher, like when wearing gloves or swimming underwater.
Also welcome is the double lock mechanism for the camera’s connection ports, ensuring that there’s no chance of having water seep into the internal components. It feels and looks secure, which is something you want when taking the camera adventuring.
Macworld Australia’s buying advice.
The perfect camera for scuba divers or ski-bunnies, the TG-1 offers great images with versatile control options.