Login or Join Now

Upload your photos, chat, win prizes and much more

Username:
Password:
Remember Me

Can't Access your Account?

New to ePHOTOzine? Join ePHOTOzine for free!

BenQ LM100 Waterproof Digital Compact Camera Review

Join Now

Join ePHOTOzine, the friendliest photography community.

Upload photos, chat with photographers, win prizes and much more for free!

55% OFF new PortraitPro 12 - use code EPHZROS414.
Category: Compact Cameras
Product: BenQ LM100
Price: £117.99
Rating: 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5

BenQ LM100 Compact Camera Review - BenQ LM100 Digital Compact Camera Review

Posted:
Print Article Add Comment Add CommentJargon Buster: Off Jargon Buster: Off
Features
Handling
Performance
Verdict
Specification
Benq Lm100 Front

BenQ announced the launch of the LM100 in July 2012. It is a compact camera which is waterproof, shockproof, freezeproof and has a 14 megapixel Panasonic CCD sensor. It is available in blue for £117.99.

Benq Lm100 Camera And Pouch

BenQ LM100 Features

The LM100 has a 14 megapixel sensor and 4x optical zoom lens, which is a 35mm equivalent of 25-100mm and has a minimum focusing distance of just 1cm in Super Macro mode. It is waterproof to 5m (for 2 hours), freezeproof to -10°C, shockproof to 1.5m as well as being dustproof.

As well as auto mode, there are full manual controls (aperture priority, shutter priority and manual). Other shooting modes include HDR, Colour Accent, Panorama, Lomo, Fisheye Mode and Web Auction mode with creates a collage from four selected images. Videos are recorded at 720p HD at 30 fps.

Benq Lm100 Top

Key Features

  • 14 megapixel CCD sensor
  • 4x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 25-100mm)
  • 2.7 inch 240k dot LCD screen
  • Waterproof to 5m (for 2 hours), freezeproof to -10°C, shockproof to 1.5m and dustproof
  • 720p HD video recording
  • ISO 100-6400
  • 1cm minimum focusing distance
  • HDR and Panorama modes
Benq Lm100 Rear

BenQ LM100 Handling

The LM100 has a similar look and feel to some of the tough Olympus and Panasonic cameras available, particularly the budget versions. It has a plastic body with a groove on the rear for your right thumb, to aid grip. By default there is a horrible beeping noise when cycling through the menus, the first option you're likely to look for is how to turn it off!

The menus system is easy enough to understand and navigate, although all the modes are listed under one option meaning it can take a little while to find the one you want. The 2.7 inch LCD screen is a decent enough size and is bright and colourful.

The battery has a CIPA rating of 180 shots, the first couple of charges yielded less than 100 shots, but after a third charge it did manage around 400 shots. We tested the camera's performance at focusing, shutter response, shot-to-shot time, continuous shooting etc. and have posted the results below. To test this we took 6 or more shots and calculated the average.

Shutter Response   0.2 seconds
Wide - Focus / Shutter Response   0.7 seconds
Full zoom - Focus / Shutter Response   0.8 seconds
Switch on Time to Taking a Photo   3.4 seconds
Shot to Shot (without flash)   1.7 seconds
Shot to Shot with Flash   3.8 seconds
Burst mode   0.3 fps
Speedy burst mode   30 fps

Burst mode records at full 14 megapixel resolution, with speedy burst limited to VGA sized images.

Benq Lm100 Battery And Memory Card

BenQ LM100 Performance

Additional sample photos and product shots are available in the Equipment Database, where you can add your own review and product ratings.

BenQ LM100 Sample Photos

Portrait | 1/60 sec | f/5.2 | 12.7 mm | ISO 100

Portrait | 1/60 sec | f/5.2 | 12.7 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Landscape | 1/430 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100

Landscape | 1/430 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

HDR | 1/430 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100

HDR | 1/430 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Pet | 1/76 sec | f/5.2 | 12.7 mm | ISO 100

Pet | 1/76 sec | f/5.2 | 12.7 mm | ISO 100
High-Res


Sample Photos - Images are generally well exposed, although there is little detail in the shadows. Colour reproduction is good, with fairly decent skin tones when shooting portraits which are free of red-eye.

BenQ LM100 Lens test images

Wide Angle | 1/317 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100

Wide Angle | 1/317 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Full Optical Zoom | 1/430 sec | f/5.9 | 18.0 mm | ISO 100

Full Optical Zoom | 1/430 sec | f/5.9 | 18.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Benq Lm100 Digital Zoom | 1/152 sec | f/5.9 | 18.0 mm | ISO 100

Benq Lm100 Digital Zoom | 1/152 sec | f/5.9 | 18.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Macro | 1/11 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 100

Macro | 1/11 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 100
High-Res


Lens Performance - At both ends of the lens, detail is nothing to get excited about, suitable for sharing on the web, not great for printing large, particularly at higher ISO settings (see ISO noise performance below). There is also purple fringing in contrasting areas of the image. The lens has a minimum focusing distance of just 1cm, which does allow for a fairly decent macro shot.

BenQ LM100 ISO test images

ISO100 | 1/6 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO100 | 1/6 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res

ISO200 | 1/11 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO200 | 1/11 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res

ISO400 | 1/23 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO400 | 1/23 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res

ISO800 | 1/47 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO800 | 1/47 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res

ISO1600 | 1/94 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO1600 | 1/94 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res

ISO3200 | 1/189 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO3200 | 1/189 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res

ISO6400 | 1/378 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm

ISO6400 | 1/378 sec | f/5.4 | 14.3 mm
High-Res


ISO Noise Performance - Noise is low at ISO 100 and 200, but starts to reduce image quality at ISO 400, with images appearing soft as well as white dots. Pictures at ISO 800 and ISO 1600 have plenty of detail missing. There is also ISO 3200 and 6400, image size is reduced to 3 megapixels, which is good given the loss of detail. Unless you can consistently shoot at ISO 100 and 200, images aren't going to be great for printing large, being more suited for sharing on the web.

BenQ LM100 White-balance test images

AWB preset - incandescent lighting | 1/30 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 200

AWB preset - incandescent lighting | 1/30 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 200
High-Res

Incandescent preset - incandescent lighting  | 1/30 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 200

Incandescent preset - incandescent lighting | 1/30 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 200
High-Res

AWB preset - fluorescent lighting | 1/15 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 400

AWB preset - fluorescent lighting | 1/15 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 400
High-Res

Fluorescent preset L - fluorescent lighting | 1/15 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 400

Fluorescent preset L - fluorescent lighting | 1/15 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 400
High-Res

Fluorescent preset H - fluorescent lighting | 1/15 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 400

Fluorescent preset H - fluorescent lighting | 1/15 sec | f/4.2 | 8.0 mm | ISO 400
High-Res


White Balance Performance - The auto white balance (AWB) preset copes really well under our studio lights. Under the incandescent lights, the incandescent preset also does well, with the slightest of green casts. There are two fluorescent presets, both of which produced a picture with a colour cast.

Panorama | 1/412 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100
Panorama | 1/412 sec | f/6.5 | 4.5 mm | ISO 100

Panorama mode - Panorama images are OK, although there isn't lots of detail, they are stitched together well and look good when shared on the web.

BenQ LM100 Other sample images

Underwater | 1/8 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 800

Underwater | 1/8 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 800
High-Res

Low Light | 1/5 sec | f/5.2 | 12.7 mm | ISO 800

Low Light | 1/5 sec | f/5.2 | 12.7 mm | ISO 800
High-Res

Fisheye | 1/30 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 400

Fisheye | 1/30 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 400
High-Res

Text | 1/30 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 200

Text | 1/30 sec | f/3.5 | 5.7 mm | ISO 200
High-Res


The first image above has been taken underwater, using super macro mode. The second shot has been taken with our studio lights really low, testing the cameras low-light ability. The final two pictures have used a couple of the many scene modes available.

BenQ LM100 Digital filters

Black And White | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Black And White | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Colour Accent Blue | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Colour Accent Blue | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Colour Accent Green | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Colour Accent Green | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Colour Accent Red | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Colour Accent Red | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Normal | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Normal | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Sepia | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Sepia | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Vivid | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Vivid | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Vivid Blue | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Vivid Blue | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Vivid Green | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Vivid Green | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res

Vivid Red | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100

Vivid Red | 0.4 sec | f/5.7 | 16.0 mm | ISO 100
High-Res


Digital Filters - There are a number of filters available when shooting, with examples above.

Video - Below is a video recorded at 720p HD, quality is OK for a budget camera. You can use optical zoom during recording, optical zoom is available, an example of which can be seen on the ePHOTOzine Youtube Page. One thing to note is that when operating the zoom, the camera automatically stops recording sound.



Value For Money

The BenQ LM100 is priced at £117.99. If you want the most waterproof and shockproof camera, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT4 ticks the box, as does the Olympus Tough TG-1.

Camera Waterproof Shockproof Freezeproof Price
Nikon Coolpix S30 3m 0.8m - £69.95
Olympus Tough TG-320 3m 1.5m -10°C £110.00
BenQ LM100 5m 1.5 -10°C £117.99
Fujifilm FinePix XP50 5m 1.5m -10°C £114.95
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT20 5m 1.5m -10°C £124.95
Pentax Optio WG-1 / (GPS) 10m 1.5m -10°C £156.00 / (194.00)
Fujifilm FinePix XP150 GPS 10m 2m -10°C £168.00
Olympus Tough TG-620 5m 1.5m -10°C £183.99
Canon PowerShot D10 10m 1.2m -10°C £209.00
Fujifilm FinePix XP170 10m 2m -10°C £219.00
Olympus Tough TG-820 10m 2m -10°C £219.00
Nikon Coolpix AW100 10m 1.5m -10°C £219.00
Pentax Optio WG-2 / (GPS) 12m 1.5m -10°C £212.00 / (£241.00)
Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT4 12m 2m -10°C £239.00
Canon PowerShot D20 10m 1.5m -10°C £262.95
Sony Cyber-shot TX20 5m 1.5m -10°C £278.00
Olympus Tough TG-1 12m 2m -10°C £299.00
Ricoh G700 5m 2m -10°C £599.00

You'll also need to buy a memory card and a case or bag to keep your camera safe and protected - have a look at our complete guide to camera bags.

BenQ LM100 Verdict

For a camera which is waterproof, shockproof, freezeproof and dustproof the LM100 is decent value for money at £117.99. It's image quality is where it is let down, particularly when shooting from ISO 400 upwards. It's unpredictable battery life doesn't help either - if you're out shooting for a long time you'll certainly want to carry a spare. But the LM100 does impress with its range of shooting modes, filters and colour reproduction. Images will look fine if they are for sharing with friends and family on the web, as long as you're in good light.

BenQ LM100 Pros

Waterproof, freezeproof, shockproof
1cm in Super Macro mode
Ample number of scene modes including HDR and panorama
Images have decent colours
Good AWB performance
Panoramas are well stitched together
Good range of filters
Comes with a case

BenQ LM100 Cons

Poor battery life expectancy
Image quality isn't good enough for large prints
Noise hinders image quality from ISO 400 upwards

FEATURES  
HANDLING  
PERFORMANCE  
VALUE FOR MONEY  
VERDICT  

BenQ LM100 Specifications

ManufacturerBenQ
Lens
Max Aperture f/3.1 - f/5.9
35mm equivalent 25mm - 100mm
Optical Zoom 4x
Image Sensor
CCD pixels 14Mp (Megapixels)
Pixels (W) 4320
Pixels (H) 3240
Sensor Type CCD
Sensor Size 1/2.3 inch
Sensor Size (width) No Data
Sensor Size (height) No Data
Aspect Ratio
  • 4:3
  • 3:2
  • 16:9
LCD Monitor
LCD Monitor 2.7in
Screen resolution 230,000 dots
Touch Screen No
Focusing
Min Focus 1cm
Focusing modes
    Exposure Control
    Shutter speeds shortest 1/2000sec
    Shutter speeds longest 15sec
    Exp modes
    • Program
    • Aperture-Priority
    • Shutter-Priority
    • Manual
    • Scene modes
    • A
    Metering
      ISO sensitivity 100 - 6400
      White balance
      • Auto
      • Manual
      • Outdoors/Daylight
      • Cloudy
      • Incandescent
      • Fluorescent
      Exposure Comp +/-2
      Shooting Options
      Continuous shooting No Data
      Video
      Movie mode Yes
      Video Resolution
      • 1280x720 720p
      • 640x480 VGA
      • 320x240 QVGA
      Video FPS 30
      Stereo Sound No
      Optical Zoom with Video Yes
      Other Features
      Image Stabilisation No Data
      Interface
      HDMI No
      USB USB 2
      Wi-Fi No
      Storage
      Card Type
      • SD
      • SDHC
      • SDXC
      File Type
      • JPG
      Power Source
      Battery Type Lithium Ion NP-45 Battery
      CIPA Rating 180
      Box Contents
      Box Contents User manual, quick guide, USB cable, battery, hand strap, software & user manual CD, pouch, AC power adapter
      Dimensions
      Weight 140g
      Width 99.1mm
      Height 61.4mm
      Depth 22mm

      View Full Product Details





      Explore More

      Canon Powershot D30 Sample Photos

      Canon Powershot D30 Sample Photos

      Full size sample photos from a production version of the Can...

      Samsung Galaxy Camera 2 Review

      Samsung Galaxy Camera 2 Review

      The new Samsung Galaxy Camera 2 is similar in many ways to i...

      Nikon Coolpix AW120 Review

      Nikon Coolpix AW120 Review

      We test the waterproof Nikon Coolpix AW120 - waterproof to 1...

      Join ePHOTOzine and remove these ads.

      Comments

      There are no comments here! Be the first!
      - Original Poster Comments
      - Your Posts

      Add a Comment

      You must be a member to leave a comment

      Username:
      Password:
      Remember me:
      Un-tick this box if you want to login each time you visit.