The Casio EX-Z2000 might not resemble some of its teen-friendly and candy color coated counterparts, but instead adopts a more somber and angular design that's pleasing to the eye. While we were given a black set for our review, the camera comes in other colors: red, violet, pink, blue and metallic silver. Sporting a stylish and sleek metal body lined with chrome trimmings, the EX-Z2000 adds more to the visual palate by having an unusually-contoured body. At 19.8mm thick, it is not the thinnest and leanest camera available, but definitely small enough to squeeze into your tight jeans pockets. For a compact camera, it's also hefty at almost 150 grams, but this is easily attributed to the use of stainless steel as part of its build. As such, the camera feels extremely solid. The only small complaint that we have of its build is that it can chalk up minor scratches easily as we found out from carrying it in our bag. Perhaps an extra coat of paint or a tougher finish for the exterior would have helped this aspect.
We've said much of its overall build and design and it's time we focus on what it has to offer. The rear of the camera is largely taken up by a 3-inch LCD screen. Accompanying it are five buttons (of which, one sits squarely in the middle of a click wheel). The Video, Camera, Play and Menu buttons are marked out by discerning symbols; complicated toggling happens squarely with the Set button and the click wheel. Even then, it is not that complicated as the main function of the click wheel is to act as a directional pad while other functions are clearly labeled.
The Display settings refer to a small but concise strip of information (doubling as shortcuts) that includes eight important elements like ISO, Flash, Timer, and AF options. Once you have this option switched on, it is visibly seen, allowing you a sweeping look at your settings. When toggled off, you can only access these on pressing the Set button, which then allows you to navigate and make your choices through the directional pad. Another novel addition allows you to customize the eight settings that you want displayed by simply pressing on the Menu button once you press Set.
If you prefer to shoot without manual controls, the Auto button is on the top. Unlike the shutter release button, the Auto button is not raised and requires a tad more pressure on activating it. Once pressed, a photo will be taken in the Auto mode. Next to it is the Best Shot button, which contains 40 modes to choose from.
Some of the Best shot modes we played with included productivity-related ones like ID Photo mode (which creates multiple images of standard ID photo sizes), Business cards and documents mode (crops shots as nicely as possible) and fun ones like crayon, oil painting and watercolor mode. There are also non-photo related modes like pre-video recording and voice-recording modes.
All in all, navigation is extremely intuitive and simple-to-use. Buttons are purposeful and not extraneous, with clear-cut assigned roles. Also, most of the buttons are easy to press, save for the flatter ones but those aren't much of a detraction from an intended purchase.