WTF? ISO 8000 on Kodak's EasyShare Z885

When megapixels stopped wooing consumers to cameras, the manufacturers apparently switched to hyping another spec: ISO.

The letters stand for the International Organization for Standardization and back in the film days the number that followed ISO referred to the film speed or the amount of light needed to expose the film. There’s math involved that we won’t go into here but the short of it: the higher the number, the more sensitive the film, the less light needed to capture an image. However, in the digital world this is basically out the window.

On a personal note, the last film SLR camera I owned went up to ISO 1600. The Kodak EasyShare Z885 on the other hand goes up to ISO 8000. What does that mean? Truthfully I haven’t seen images from the camera yet (the one on display at PMA is a pre-production that was finicky about even turning on) but, I guess you’d be able to take a picture of something black, in a black room with nearly no light and still get a picture of something. It’s also what most, if not all, of the vendors are using to help reduce image blur.

UPDATE: We neglected to mention when we originally posted this that the Z885 doesn’t even have the highest ISO we saw on a consumer camera at PMA. The Olympus FE-250 has an ISO up to 10000 when shooting at a resolution of 3 megapixels. We can only imagine what kind of noise would be in an image shot at that ISO.

The Z885 is otherwise unremarkable. It’s a solid compact camera with a 2.5-inch LCD, 8.1-megapixel sensor and a 5X optical zoom. It includes many of Kodak’s color and operational features like auto scene mode detection and Perfect Touch, which improves dark shadows in pictures. All in all for $200, and assuming the picture quality is decent, the Z885 looks like a competent compact camera that’s more than worth the price.

The top-mounted mode dial is very thumb-use friendly.

Kodak’s selling points for the Z885.