As the name suggests, the TG-310 is made to survive conditions which cameras are not normally designed for. It is waterproof to 3m, shockproof to 1.5m and freezeproof to -10°C. There is a 14 megapixel sensor and a 3.6x optical zoom lens, which is a 35mm equivalent of 28-102mm and can focus down to just 2cm. The camera is armed with Dual Image Stabilisation to reduce blur with fast-moving shots or in low light.
Intelligent Auto Mode adjusts the camera's settings, focus and exposure automatically and when shooting underwater, there is also an underwater white-balance setting. Panoramics are stitched together in camera and the Advanced Face Detection focuses and is designed to expose up to 12 faces perfectly.
As commonly featured on Olympus compacts, the TG-310 has a range of Magic Filters such as Pop Art, Pin Hole, Fish-eye, Drawing, Soft Focus, Punk, Sparkle and Watercolour. Pet Detection Mode will automatically take pictures of a dog or a cat when they look at the camera. Using Beauty Mode when shooting portraits will make faces appear brighter and smoother. Other features include Eye-Fi Card compatibility and 3D photo shooting mode.
The camera shoots videos at 720p HD with sound and optical zoom and the camera can be connected to a HD TV via a mini HDMI cable.
Olympus Tough TG-310 Top
Waterproof to 3m
Shockproof to 1.5m
Freezeproof to -10°C
3.6x wide optical zoom (35mm equiv: 28-102mm)
Dual Image Stabilisation
Eye-Fi Card compatibility
3D photo shooting mode
14 megapixel sensor
720p HD movies and remote operation by HDMI control
Automatic Underwater White Balance
2.7 inch 230,000 dot LCD screen
In-camera panorama function
Intelligent Auto Mode
Advanced Face Detection
Magic Filters for images and HD movies
LED illuminator to lighten up underwater or macro sceneries
Pet Detection Mode
Battery charging via USB-cable
TruePic III+ image processor
Olympus Tough TG-310 Rear
Olympus Tough TG-310 Handling
The TG-310 doesn't have the same big chunky buttons which are found on the TG-610, the TG-310 buttons are covered by a plastic mould to keep the water out and become slippery when wet.
There is a dedicated video record button and a couple of buttons even have a function when the camera is switched off. When the play button is pressed you go straight to viewing your pictures and videos and the video button activates video recording.
On the rear of the camera is a 2.7 inch 230,000 dot LCD screen which is easy to view from extreme angles and varying light conditions, including underwater.
Continuous shooting mode shoots full size images at 0.5fps and High Speed mode which shoots at 3fps, although image size is limited to approximately 3 megapixels.
Olympus Tough TG-310 Battery
Olympus Tough TG-310 Performance
The TG-310 takes really well exposed images with great colour reproduction. The wide-angle image below was taken on a really bright day and there is some purple fringing in the trees. Detail, although better in the centre of the images, is good throughout the images. With a minimum focus distance of just 2cm, the camera takes really good macro images when using Super Macro mode.
Olympus Tough TG-310 Lens test images
Noise is very minimal at both ISO80 and ISO100, with only a touch creeping in at ISO200. Noise increases through ISO400 and ISO800, but good sharp images are still produced. There is lots of noise at ISO1600 and images taken using this setting are likely to be best used for small size prints or for sharing on the web.
Olympus Tough TG-310 ISO test images
The camera takes really good portrait pictures, although there is a slight touch of red-eye. Portraits look even better when using Beauty Shot mode, as this softens the skin and reduces the blemishes, although image size is reduced to just 5 megapixels.
Olympus Tough TG-310 Sample Photos
Auto white-balance performs well and under our studio lighting, it handles the fluorescent light much better than the fluorescent preset. Under the incandescent lighting, the AWB setting struggles a touch with the incandescent preset taking a better image.
Olympus Tough TG-310 White-balance test images
Below are example images using each of the eight Magic Filters available.
Olympus Tough TG-310 Digital filters
The camera shoots videos at 720p HD with sound and optical zoom as well as being able to apply the magic filters to videos as well.
Value For Money
The Olympus Tough TG-310 costs £128.00. There are plenty of cameras on the market which are designed to be used in conditions normally considered unsuitable for a camera. At the cheaper end is the Fujifilm FinePix XP30, waterproof to 5m, shockproof to 1.5m and freezeproof to -10°C costing £123.00. At the higher end is the Ricoh G700SE, waterproof to 5m, shockproof to 2m and freezeproof to -10°C costing £649.00. The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FT3 offers the best performance regarding water and shockproofness at 12m and 2m respectively, costing £248.99.
If you are looking for a low priced digital camera which is waterproof, freezeproof and shockproof you can't go far wrong with the TG-310. At just £128.00 it represents good value for money and it takes fantastic pictures. It's not as feature packed and doesn't handle as well as the TG-610 we have previously reviewed, but it is around £50 less.
The Olympus Tough TG-310 takes great pictures and is good value for money.
Olympus Tough TG-310 Pros
Waterproof, shockproof and freezeproof
Good image quality
Good value for money