The Kodak Easyshare Touch was released in January 2011. The camera is available in black, red and purple for around £105.00.
Kodak Easyshare Touch M577: Features
The Easyshare Touch as a 5x optical zoom lens which is a 35mm equivalent of 28 - 140mm and a 14 megapixel sensor, allowing for prints up to 30 x 40 inch. On the rear of the camera is a 3 inch LCD touchscreen which allows for tapping, swiping and dragging and also has Kodak Colour Science Technology.
As the name suggests, the Easyshare Touch is all about sharing your images. When viewing a photo you simply need to press the share button, then choose which network you want to share your image on, whether that be the Kodak Gallery, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube (videos), Flickr, Orkut, Yandex or Kaizin001 or send by email. Next time you plug your camera is the images will be sent to your chosen destination.
Tagged portrait image
The camera has Smart Capture mode to automatically adjust the camera settings in a wide range of scenes. With Blur Reduction the Easyshare Touch is also able to minimise the effect of camera shake. Face Recognition will recognise up to 20 pre-tagged friends, with up to five in one image.
As well as a varied range of scene modes, there are creative modes and artistic effects available. When shooting you can add a Kodacolor, Kodachrome, Ektachrome, Tri-x, T-max of Sepia film effect. When editing photos you can add effects such as spot colour, photo captions, background blur, borders and tints and photobooth mode.
Videos can be recorded in full 720p HD video and edited in camera, then shared via a HDMI cable and there is even an optional remote control available.
14 megapixel sensor
5x optical zoom lens (35mm equiv: 28 - 140mm)
720p HD movies
ISO64 - 1600
Kodak Easyshare software
Kodak Easyshare Touch M577: Handling
The Easyshare Touch is made of plastic with six buttons as well as the 3 inch touch screen. There is a dedicated button for video shooting, playback and sharing as well as the typical power, shutter release and zoom rocker buttons, although the latter is found on the rear of the camera rather than round the shutter release.
The camera is really let down by the amount of time it takes to be ready to take pictures after switching on. It takes about seven seconds and initially you are left frustratingly tapping the screen with no response. When it is finally ready the screen is responsive and consistent with many other cameras which feature touch screens. The cameras menus are clear and easy to navigate.
Continuous shooting is also a bit of a let down. At most it was only capable of a maximum of three shots at 0.5fps and on occasion the camera froze when processing the images*. Although not the quickest for a compact, focus speed is fairly quick. There is no CIPA data for the cameras battery, but during testing it was only charged once, although when it's plugged in to download images it automatically charges as well, so it's unlikely you'll find the battery fully drained if you regularly move your images to your computer.
*This is an error which could be fixed with a firmware update.
Kodak Easyshare Touch M577: Performance
The Easyshare Touch is good at focusing, but its image detail is not it strongest. When viewing images at full size, it is clear that detail is better in the centre of the images and are blurry towards the edges. There is also evidence of purple fringing in the wide-angle shot below. The 5cm minimum focusing distance mean you can get close and take a good macro shot.
At ISO64 there is very little noise, with only a little creeping in at ISO100. Noise does become more evident at ISO200 and it gets worse at ISO400, but the images produced are still good. At ISO800, noise starts to become very clear and images lose their sharpness and is a lot worse at ISO1600. At ISO800 and ISO1600, the images produced do retain a good amount of colour but they aren't going to make good large prints, but will be fine for use on the web.
ISO64, 1/3, f/5.3, 18mm (35mm equiv: 101mm)
ISO100, 1/3, f/5.3, 18mm (35mm equiv: 101mm)
ISO200, 1/10, f/5.3, 18mm (35mm equiv: 101mm)
ISO400, 1/20, f/5.3, 18mm (35mm equiv: 101mm)
ISO800, 1/40, f/5.3, 18mm (35mm equiv: 101mm)
ISO1600, 1/80, f/5.3, 18mm (35mm equiv: 101mm)
The camera takes a good portrait shot, with just a touch of red-eye when using the flash. Below are examples using some of the other scene modes available. Landscape mode gives a boost to the greens and blues in the images and sport mode is used for a quick shutter speed to catch the water droplets. The High ISO mode is ideal for shooting in low light conditions, with the example shot taken in our dark studio without the use of flash.
High ISO, ISO800, 1/5, f/3.9, 5mm (35mm equiv: 28mm)
In our studio test shots, the auto white-balance setting has out performed the presets for incandescent and fluorescent light. The incandescent preset has given a slight green cast in the image, with an orange tint when using the fluorescent preset.
Auto White Balance - Incandescent Lighting, ISO100, 1/8, f/4.6, 9mm (35mm equiv: 49mm)
The Easyshare Touch shoots videos at 720p HD. You can't use optical zoom during recording, but there is digital zoom available, an example of which can be seen on the ePHOTOzine Youtube page.
Value For Money
The Kodak Easyshare Touch M577 can be purchased for around £105.00. There are a wide range of cameras available with a similar specification. Cameras worth considering which we have recently reviewed on ePHOTOzine are the: Pentax Optio S1 at £99.99 scoring 3/5, Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX70 at £148.99 scoring 3.5/5, Canon PowerShot A3200 IS at £104.99 scoring 4/5 and the Nikon Coolpix S3100 at £64.99 scoring 4/5.
Kodak Easyshare Touch M577: Verdict
The Easyshare Touch offers some unique features, such as the ability to tag photos to be shared on the web in camera and different film effects from those commonly featured on compact digital cameras. If you are looking for a camera with a touch-screen then this camera is well priced given its decent image quality. The lag between switching the camera on and it being ready to take pictures becomes annoying, quickly, and don't even bother using the camera in continuous shooting mode. Overall, the camera justifies its fair price tag.
Kodak Easyshare Touch M577: Pros
Easy to share pictures on social networking sites
Good value for money
Film effects are unique
Kodak Easyshare Touch M577: Cons
Continuous shooting is slow and crashes occasionally
Takes ages to be ready after switching on