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Olympus µ Tough-6000 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £206
inc VAT


1/2.3in 10.0-megapixel sensor, 3.6x zoom (28-102mm equivalent), 149g

The µ Tough-6000 isn’t quite as rugged as its more expensive sibling, the Tough-8000, but waterproofing to a depth of 3m and shock protection from 1.5m are still competitive.

It has the same lens cover as the Tough-8000, with the same benefits and drawbacks.

We don’t think much of the cramped buttons, some of which have labels that are etched rather than printed. These will be tricky to see and operate in water. However, the camera makes up for it with an innovative tap control function. Tapping the right side of the camera brings up flash settings, while the left side accesses macro options. This includes a macro mode with LED lamp illumination. Tapping the screen switches to image playback, and it’s then possible to flick through shots by tapping either side. This isn’t so useful when bobbing around on the ocean, but it’s ideal for reviewing photos when wearing skiing gloves.

Sadly, there’s little else about this camera that impresses. It’s the slowest in the group, taking up to five seconds to switch on and take a shot. The gap between shots depends on what sort of media is used; with an xD card we measured an average of 4.4 seconds. Using a microSD card via the supplied adaptor reduced this time to 3.2 seconds, but even that is still slow, though. Continuous shooting ran at just 0.6fps, but an alternative mode captured 3-megapixel photos at an impressive 5fps.

The ? Tough-6000 trailed behind the others for image quality, too. Details looked sharp in favourable lighting, but comparisons with Canon’s D10 and Panasonic’s DMC-FT1 revealed that the 6000 failed to resolve subtle textures. Noise was extremely heavy in low light, but at least it was a more uniform colour than the Tough-8000’s kaleidoscopic splodges. So many of our test shots were blurred that we have to wonder if optical image stabilisation was malfunctioning and introducing shakes, rather than eliminating them.

Even if we disregard this problem, the poor performance, low quality shots and high noise mean that we can’t recommend this camera.

Basic Specifications

Rating **
CCD effective megapixels 10.0 megapixels
CCD size 1/2.3in
Viewfinder none
LCD screen size 2.7in
LCD screen resolution 230,000 pixels
Optical zoom 3.6x
Zoom 35mm equivalent 28-102mm
Image stabilisation optical, sensor shift
Maximum image resolution 3,648×2,736
Maximum movie resolution 640×480
Movie frame rate at max quality 30fps
File formats JPEG; AVI (M-JPEG)


Memory slot xD, microSD
Mermory supplied 42MB internal
Battery type 3.7V 925mAh Li-ion
Battery Life (tested) 230 shots
Connectivity USB, AV, DC in
Body material metal
Accessories USB and AV cables
Weight 149g
Size 63x95x22mm

Buying Information

Price £206

Camera Controls

Exposure modes auto
Shutter speed auto
Aperture range auto
ISO range (at full resolution) 50 to 1600
Exposure compensation +/-2 EV
White balance auto, 6 presets
Additional image controls shadow adjust
Manual focus No
Closest macro focus 2cm
Auto-focus modes multi, centre, face detect
Metering modes multi, centre, face detect
Flash auto, forced, suppressed, red-eye reduction
Drive modes single, continuous, self-timer