The Kodak AZ901 stands out as one of the most compact super zoom cameras in the world, just shy of 2000mm at 1980mm.
Priced at £399 it is aimed at the enthusiasts / amateurs among photographers looking for a super zoom at a fair price.
First impressions out of the box is this is quite an attractive piece of kit and although it would never fit inside a jacket pocket and you wouldn’t expect that, it is still relatively compact considering its massive focal range.
Being used to heavy DSLRs (even a mirrorless such as the A7RII is heavy) it is really quite surprisingly light, meaning you can carry it around easily without strain.
The camera features a fully articulated screen, allowing for more creative angles, which you can turn inside out to protect during transportation in a bag or while not in use. I also would recommend a fully articulated screen to any vloggers out there, it makes life a lot easier when you can see your face while filming yourself.
One of my first cameras was a Fujifilm bridge camera back in 2007 and this feels like going full circle as this too is a bridge camera, giving me the opportunity to compare and see the progress that has been made during that time.
I would immediately say the reason anyone should buy the AZ901 is its zoom, over any other feature.
It could be of interest to anyone keen especially on wildlife photography but also anyone living in a city as it allows a higher degree of creativity being able to capture what couldn’t be done with shorter focal length such as camera phones, most compacts or could alternatively be achieved with an expensive DSLR with expensive zoom lens.
The image quality is good, not mind blowing but good with the typical Kodak colours which are rich and vivid.
I see it perfectly suited for architecture photography and minimal photography, allowing you to capture less obvious detail in buildings. You have that extra reach (superhuman reach rather) to shoot what others can't.
Now I have to admit, this camera doesn’t meet my particular needs when it comes to a camera but I’m a professional with much more specific needs than anyone just wanting to capture photos for their own enjoyment.
Something worth noting too, is I would see this as a day time camera rather than a low light camera since its ISO capability is rather limited and not so impressive.
With such a long focal length a tripod is highly recommended, doubled with the use of the timer to avoid shake caused by pressing the shutter. Although not necessary as the camera features image stabilisation, a tripod would help greatly in composition. Naturally, at near 2000mm (90X zoom), any micro movement before pressing the shutter results in messing-up your composition.
A tripod also proves helpful at lower shutter speeds and in order to retain the ISO low for the best image quality. I have found the ISO (limited at 3200) fairly limited and affecting image quality as soon as it’s ramped up too high.
Overall, a well priced super zoom for anyone looking for that huge focal range I would not hesitate to recommend.
Here are some test Urban shots I captured in the short time I had to review this camera: