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Digital Camera News Archives at DCResource.com

 
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{ Tuesday, January 31, 2012 }
 

Nikon announces fast-lensed Coolpix P310, huge-lensed Coolpix P510

Nikon has updated nearly their entire Coolpix lineup today, and I'm going to start with the two flagship models. While the Coolpix P310 and its fast F1.8 lens are no doubt interesting, the camera that really caught my eye is the P510 super zoom. For those whom 24X, 30X, and even 36X zooms aren't enough, the Coolpix P510 has a whopping *42X* optical zoom lens. And no, it doesn't come with its own tripod.

Here are the details for these two P-series models. Bear with me, as the specs I have are limited.

Coolpix P310 [specs]

  • 16.1 Megapixel, 1/2.3" back-illuminated CMOS sensor
  • Expeed C2 image processor
  • F1.8-4.9, 4.2X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 100 mm
  • Optical image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD display with 921,000 pixels
  • Full manual controls
  • Numerous multi-shot features, including HDR and Night Landscape
  • Plenty of special effects
  • Records Full HD video at 1080/30p with stereo sound, use of optical zoom lens
  • 90MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC
  • 230 shots per charge using EN-EL12 lithium-ion battery
  • Ships in February for $329

Coolpix P510 [specs] - changes:

  • F3.0-5.9, 42X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 1000 mm (!!)
    • Dual zoom controllers (top and side)
  • Articulating LCD (same size/resolution as P310)
  • Electronic viewfinder (specs unknown)
  • Built-in GPS with tracking function
  • 240 shots per charge with EN-EL5 lithium-ion battery
  • Available in black and red
  • Ships in February for $429
continue reading »
 

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Nikon Coolpix S3300 / S4300 / S6300 / S9300 announced

Next we have a whole mess of cameras in Nikon's S-series, save for the budget waterproof model mentioned in the next item. These four models cover all the bases, from the basic Coolpix S3300 to the more enthusiast-friendly Coolpix S9300 compact ultra zoom. Let's start with the S3300 and work our way up:

Coolpix S3300 [specs]

  • 16.0 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.3-6.5, 6X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 26 - 156 mm
  • Optical image stabilization
  • Ultra-compact metal body, comes in silver, black, pink, purple, and red
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Scene Auto Selector feature
  • Records 720p video with sound
  • 42MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card
  • Uses EN-EL19 lithium-ion battery, 210 shots per charge
  • Ships next month for $139

Coolpix S4300 [specs] - changes:

  • 3-inch touchscreen LCD with 460,000 pixels
  • 74MB onboard memory
  • 180 shots per charge (same battery)
  • Available in plum, black, silver, white, and red
  • Priced at $169

Coolpix S6300 [specs] - changes:

  • 16.0 Megapixel back-illuminated CMOS sensor
  • F3.2-5.8, 10X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 250 mm
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Lots of special effects, plus 180/360 degree panorama mode
  • Records Full HD video (1080/30p) with stereo sound
  • 25MB onboard memory
  • Uses EN-EL12 li-ion battery, 230 shots per charge
  • Available in red, black, silver, and blue
  • Priced at $199

Coolpix S9300 [specs] - changes:

  • F3.5-5.9, 18X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 450 mm
  • 3-inch LCD with 921,000 pixels
  • Built-in GPS with tracking functionality
  • 26MB onboard memory
  • 200 shots per charge using EN-EL12 battery
  • Available in black, red, and silver
  • Priced at $349
continue reading »
 
 
 

Budget-friendly Nikon Coolpix S30, L26, and L810

Let's close out the new Nikon models with three entry-level models, the first of which is waterproof:

Coolpix S30 [specs]

  • 10.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.3-5.9, 3X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 29.1 - 87.3 mm
  • Waterproof to 9.8 feet, shockproof from 2.6 feet, and dustproof
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation
  • Records 720p video at 30 fps
  • 47MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card
  • Uses two AA batteries; 410 shots per charge with NiMH AAs
  • Available in white, blue, and pink
  • Ships in February for $119

Coolpix L26 [specs] - changes:

  • 16.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.2-6.5, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 26 - 130 mm
  • 3-inch LCD with 230,000 pixels
  • Records 720p video at 24 fps
  • 19MB onboard memory
  • 350 shots per charge (when using two NiMH AA batteries)
  • Available in red, black, and silver
  • Also priced at $119

Coolpix L810 [specs] - changes:

  • F3.1-5.9, 26X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 22.5 - 585 mm
  • Optical image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD has 921,000 pixels
  • Records 720p video with stereo sound
  • 50MB onboard memory
  • Uses four AA batteries; 450 shots per charge with NiMH cells
  • Available in black, red, and blue
  • Priced at $279
continue reading »
 
 
 

Panasonic rolls out Lumix DMC-ZS15 and DMC-ZS20 compact travel zooms

Panasonic has four cameras ready for your consumption today, with the first two being new additions to their very popular travel zoom series. The new Lumix DMC-ZS15 and DMC-ZS20 replace last years' ZS8 and ZS10, and the ZS20 now packs a 20X zoom lens into a small form factor. These new models are supposed to have less noise than their predecessors, which is good news. Here's more:

Lumix DMC-ZS15 [specs]

  • 12.2 Megapixel MOS sensor
  • F3.3-5.9, 16X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 384 mm
  • Optical image stabilization (Power OIS), with active mode for movies
  • 3-inch LCD display with 460,000 pixels
  • Full manual controls, though no RAW support
  • Point-and-shoot fans can use Intelligent Auto mode, with scene selection, blur reduction, face recognition, smart sharpening, shadow brightening, and more
  • Plenty of special effects (expressive retro, miniature, toy camera, etc)
  • Continuous shooting at 10 frames/sec (four shot max)
  • New HDR feature, plus Handheld Nightshot and Motion Deblur modes
  • In-camera panorama feature creates 360 degree images just by panning the camera
  • Records Full HD video at 1080/60i (sensor output is 30p) with monaural sound using the AVCHD codec
    • Can also record 1080/30p video using the MPEG-4 codec
    • Optical zoom can be used while recording
  • 70MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card
  • Uses DMW-BCG10 lithium-ion battery, 260 shots per charge; battery is now charged internally over USB
  • Optional underwater case
  • Available in black and silver
  • Ships in March for $279

Lumix DMC-ZS20 [specs] - changes:

  • 14.2 Megapixel MOS sensor
  • F3.3-6.4, 20X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 480 mm
  • 3-inch LCD has touch capability, for focus, shutter release, zoom operation, map navigation, and image playback
  • Built-in GPS has a database of one million landmarks plus maps, which you load from an included DVD
  • Burst mode takes ten shots at 10 frames/sec
  • Records video at 1080/60p with Dolby Digital stereo sound
    • High speed video mode records at 220 fps; when played back, provides slow motion effect
  • 12MB onboard memory
  • Available in black, red, white, and silver
  • Priced at $349
continue reading »
 
 
 

Panasonic introduces rugged Lumix DMC-TS20 and DMC-TS4

Want a camera that you travel and get wet? Then you might be interested in the new Lumix DMC-TS4, which I'll describe right after I tell you about its little brother, the TS20:

Lumix DMC-TS20 [specs]

  • 16.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.9-5.7, 4X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 100 mm
  • Optical image stabilization (Mega OIS)
  • Waterproof to 16 feet, shockproof from 5 feet, freezeproof to +14F, and dustproof; comes in orange, blue, black, and red
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Intelligent Auto mode
  • Numerous special effects, plus new Panorama Shot feature
  • Records 720p video at 30 frames/sec with monaural sound using the MPEG-4 codec
    • Optical zoom can be used while recording
  • 70MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card
  • Uses DMW-BCK7 lithium-ion battery, 250 shots per charge
  • Ships in late February for $179

Lumix DMC-TS4 [specs] - changes:

  • 12.1 Hi-Speed Megapixel CCD
  • F3.3-5.9, 4.6X optical zoom, equivalent to 28 - 128 mm
  • Fancier Power OIS image stabilization system
  • Waterproof to 40 feet, shockproof from 6.6 feet, freezeproof to +14F, and dustproof
  • Built-in GPS has a compass, barometer, and altimeter, with the latter providing both altitude and depth; same map and landmark capabilities as the ZS20
  • Some manual controls
  • Time Lapse mode
  • Records Full HD video at 1080/60i (30p sensor output) with monaural sound using the AVCHD codec
    • LED light available to brighten the scene
  • 20MB onboard memory
  • 310 shots per charge using DMW-BCF10 battery
  • HDMI output
  • Optional underwater case lets you take the camera even deeper (40 meters / 130 feet) underwater
  • Available in orange, blue, black, and silver
  • Ships in mid-March for $399
continue reading »
 
 
{ Sunday, January 29, 2012 }
 

Sony introduces ultra-compact Cyber-shot DSC-TX200V with 18MP sensor

Sony has introduced a trio of compact cameras, and I'll begin with the smallest of the three: the Cyber-shot DSC-TX200V. Believe it or not, camera buyers are still thinking that the more Megapixels a camera has, the better it must be. Sony certainly noticed this, as the TX200V is the first compact camera to feature an 18 Megapixel sensor (!). Here are its other features:

Cyber-shot DSC-TX200V [specs to come]

  • 18.2 Megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor
  • "Extra High Sensitivity technology enhances low-light shooting capabilities"
  • F3.5-4.8, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 26 - 130 mm
  • Optical image stabilization, with "active" mode for extra shake reduction when taking videos
  • Ultra-compact body with reinforced glass front panel is waterproof to 16 feet, freezeproof to +14F, and dustproof; comes in silver, red, and violet
  • 3.3-inch touchscreen OLED display with over 1.2 million pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with scene-selecting Intelligent Auto mode
  • "Lightning fast" autofocus speeds, as low as 0.13 sec in good light, and 0.25 sec in low light
  • Continuous shooting at 10 frames/second
  • New Clear Image Zoom feature gives you 2X of nearly lossless digital zoom, without having to lower the resolution
  • Handy Anti Motion Blur, Backlight Correction HDR features (see my NEX-5N review to see why I like those)
  • Fun features include Picture Effects, sweep panorama (even underwater), and 3D still recording
  • Full HD video recording at 60p with stereo sound, using the AVCHD codec
    • Optical zoom can be used while recording a movie
    • Camera can take 13 Megapixel stills while simultaneously recording a movie
  • 105MB onboard memory + Memory Stick Micro and microSD/SDHC cards
  • Uses NP-BN1 lithium-ion battery, 220 shots per charge
  • Ships in March for $500
continue reading »
 
 
 

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-WX50 / DSC-WX70

Next up we have two more conventional-looking Cyber-shots. Despite having "only" 16 Megapixel sensors, the WX50 and WX70 described below are still packed with features:

Cyber-shot DSC-WX50 [specs]

  • 16.2 Megapixel Exmor R CMOS sensor
  • Same Extra High Sensitivity technology as the TX200V
  • F2.6-6.3, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 125 mm
  • Optical image stabilization, with "active" mode for extra shake reduction when taking videos
  • 2.7 inch LCD display with 460,800 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Intelligent Auto mode
  • Clear Image Zoom boosts total zoom to 10X with minimal degradation of image quality
  • Continuous shooting at 10 frames/sec (up to 10 shots)
  • Same Sweep Panorama, Anti Motion Blur, Backlight HDR, 3D, and Picture Effect features as the TX200V
  • Records Full HD video at 60i with stereo sound, using the AVCHD codec
    • Optical zoom available while recording
    • Can record 12MP stills while recording video
  • 19MB onboard memory + combo Memory Stick Pro Duo and SD/SDHC/SDXC slot
  • Uses NP-BN1 li-ion battery, 240 shots per charge
  • Available in silver and black
  • Ships in March for $200

Cyber-shot DSC-WX70 [specs] - changes:

  • 3-inch touchscreen LCD display with 921,000 dots
  • Available in silver, black, pink, violet, and white
  • Priced at $230
continue reading »
 
 
{ Friday, January 27, 2012 }
 

Sony Alpha NEX-5N review posted

It's taken longer than I would've liked, but I'm finally able to bring you my review of the Sony Alpha NEX-5N interchangeable lens camera. Is it the compact ILC that everyone's been waiting for? Find out in our review!
 
 
{ Wednesday, January 25, 2012 }
 

Pentax intros compact super zoom with vertical shooting controls

Pentax has announced a new compact super zoom camera, the Optio VS20. This camera packs a 20X zoom lens into a pretty small package, and it also has additional controls for portrait shooting -- something you won't find on other compacts. Here's more:

Optio VS20 [specs]

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.1-4.8, 20X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 560 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD display with 460,000 pixels and a 170 degree viewing angle
  • Has additional zoom controller and shutter release button for portrait shooting; there's also a second tripod mount for shooting vertically
  • Point-and-shoot operation; Auto Picture mode selects a scene mode for you
  • Plenty of scene modes and special effects (fisheye, sketch, etc)
  • Electronic level
  • New Auto Face Recognition feature
  • Records 720p video at 30 frames/sec
  • Optional wireless remote
  • 16MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card
  • Uses D-LI122 lithium-ion battery, 200 shots per charge
  • Available in "noble black" and "brilliant white"
  • Arrives in stores next month for $250
continue reading »
 
 
{ Thursday, January 19, 2012 }
 

Kodak officially files for bankruptcy protection

Kodak has officially filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, which we reported on two weeks ago. The company has obtained $950 million in financing from Citigroup, and believes that they will be able to operate normally until their reorganization is complete in 2013. More information can be found at kodaktransforms.com.
 
 
{ Tuesday, January 10, 2012 }
 

Samsung's new trio of Wi-Fi cameras

Here are a couple of Samsung cameras that I didn't get a chance to mention yesterday. All three of these models are equipped with big zoom lenses -- and Wi-Fi. The top-end model also features a GPS and "Live Landmark" feature (which lets you download maps and info on the go), making it quite the travel camera.

As is usually the case with Samsung cameras, I have virtually no information about these cameras. Here's what I can tell you:

Samsung ST200F

  • 16.0 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.1-5.6, 10X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 27 - 270 mm
  • Optical image stabilization
  • Built-in Wi-Fi, for sharing photos on Facebook/YouTube/etc, or uploading to free cloud storage from Samsung and Microsoft; users can also automatically back up photos to their PC wirelessly
  • 3-inch LCD display
  • Point-and-shoot operation
  • Live (sweep) Panorama feature
  • Motion Photo lets "one element of a normal photograph come to life and keep moving while the rest of the frame stays still"
  • Records video at 720p with sound
  • Ships in February for $199

Samsung WB150F - changes:

  • 14.2 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.2-5.8, 18X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 432 mm
  • 3-inch AMOLED display
  • Full manual controls
  • Available this month for $229

Samsung WB850F - changes:

  • 16.2 Megapixel, back-illuminated CMOS sensor
  • F2.8-5.9, 21X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 23 - 483 mm
  • Built-in GPS with compass; users can download maps and the camera can point you toward landmarks
  • Records Full HD video at 1080/30p or 1080/60i with stereo sound
  • Coming in April for $379
continue reading »
 
 
 

Samsung ST66 / ST76 entry-level cameras

The other two Samsung cameras from yesterday are entry-level models that will apparently "deliver flawless images", according to the press release. Unfortunately, the press release doesn't give you any useful specs, nor does it differentiate between the two models! Here's what I was able to dig up:

Samsung ST66

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.5-6.3, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 125 mm
  • 2.7" LCD display
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Smart Auto mode
  • Plenty of special effects, plus Live Panorama mode
  • 720p video recording
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Ships in March for $119

Samsung ST76

  • Optical image stabilization (I think)
  • Priced at $129
continue reading »
 
 
{ Monday, January 9, 2012 }
 

Olympus releases SP-620UZ and SZ-12 ultra zooms

Olympus is announcing five new cameras at CES, and I'm going to split them into three news items. First, let's start with ultra zooms. Surprisingly, it's the smaller of the two cameras which has the most powerful lens!

SP-620UZ [specs]

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.1-5.8, 21X optical zoom, equivalent to 25 - 525 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with scene-selecting iAuto mode
  • Numerous "Magic Filters" (special effects)
  • In-camera panorama stitching and 3D still capability
  • Scary-sounding Beauty Make-up Mode lets you "apply everything from eyeliner to eye shadow and rouge" and "even lift cheekbones"
  • Records 720p video with sound using the H.264 codec
  • Unknown amount of onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Uses four AA batteries; battery life not available
  • Available in silver and black
  • Shipping this month for $199

SZ-12 [specs] - changes:

  • 14 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.0-6.9 (!), 24X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 600 mm
  • 3-inch LCD has 460,000 pixels
  • Continuous shooting at 7 frames/sec (at what resolution, I don't know)
  • Ultra-compact aluminum body, comes in silver, black and red
  • Uses NB-50B lithium-ion battery, 220 shots per charge
  • Ships in March for $199
continue reading »
 
 
 

Olympus offers new rugged camera for budget-minded adventurers

Next up is Olympus' newest rugged camera, the low-priced Tough TG-320:

Tough TG-320 [specs]

  • 14 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.5-5.1, 3.6X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 102 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • Rugged body is waterproof to 10 feet, shockproof from 5 feet, freezeproof to +14F, and dustproof
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with iAuto mode
  • Plenty of Magic Filters, plus 3D still capability
  • Records 720p video with sound using the H.264 codec
  • 19.5MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Uses LI-42B li-ion battery, 150 shots per charge (I think)
  • Available in red and blue
  • Coming in February for $179
continue reading »
 
 
 

Olympus VG-160 / VR-340 budget cameras

The last Olympus cameras for today are two entry-level models: the VG-160 and VR-340. After these bullet points, my fingers have the rest of the day off!

VG-160 [specs]

  • 14 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.8-6.5, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 26 - 130 mm
  • Ultra-compact body, comes in silver, black, red, and orange
  • 3-inch LCD with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation with iAuto mode
  • Plenty of Magic Filters, including a new "punk" mode!
  • Records 720p video with sound using Motion JPEG codec
  • 49MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC card slot
  • Uses the LI-70B li-ion battery, 160 shots per charge
  • Shipping next month for $99

VR-340 [specs]

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.0-5.7, 10X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 240 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD has 460,000 pixels
  • Beauty Make-up Mode!
  • Support for SDXC cards (I'm not sure how much internal memory this one has)
  • Uses LI-50B li-ion battery; battery life not available
  • Available in white, silver, black, purple, and red
  • Ships in March for $149
continue reading »
 
 
 

Sony intros three entry-level Cyber-shots

Sony is announcing a trio of entry-level cameras at CES, as well. They include:

Cyber-shot DSC-W610 [specs]

  • 14.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.8-5.9, 4X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 26 - 105 mm
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with scene-selecting Intelligent Auto mode
  • New 360 degree Sweep Panorama feature
  • VGA movie mode
  • 21MB onboard memory + Memory Stick Pro Duo / SD card slot
  • Uses NP-BN1 lithium-ion battery, 250 shots per charge
  • Comes in silver, black, pink, green, and blue
  • Available this month for $110

Cyber-shot DSC-W620 [specs] - changes:

  • F3.2-6.5, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 140 mm
  • Four Picture Effects: toy camera, partial color, pop color, and soft high key
  • 720p movie mode using M-JPEG codec
  • 28MB onboard memory
  • 220 shots per charge
  • Available in silver, black, and red
  • Ships next month for $120

Cyber-shot DSC-W650 [specs] - changes:

  • 16.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.6-6.3, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent 25 - 125 mm; unlike the previous models, this lens carries the Carl Zeiss label
  • Optical image stabilization
  • Uses MPEG-4 codec for movies
  • 27MB onboard memory
  • Also available in silver, black, and red
  • Ships next month for $140 (price corrected from original news item)
continue reading »
 
 

Fujifilm announces X-Pro1 interchangeable lens camera

Fujifilm today took the wraps off of their first mirrorless interchangeable lens camera: the X-Pro1. This camera uses a 16 Megapixel, APS-C-size CMOS sensor and new Fuji X-mount lenses, and features in enhanced version of the hybrid viewfinder that debuted on the X100. Sorry for the delay getting this up -- the info was not predisclosed (despite all the leaks) and I had family business right when the press release came out! Enough blabbering, here we go:

Fuji X-Pro1 [specs]

  • 16.3 Megapixel, APS-C-size X-Trans CMOS sensor
    • New sensor design enhances randomness in the pixel array arrangement, reduces moire and false colors, without the need for a low-pass filter
    • Ultrasonic dust removal system
  • New EXR Processor Pro handles the image processing
  • Uses new Fuji X-mount, which has a 17.7 mm flange back distance; the crop factor is 1.5X
    • Three lenses will be available at launch: F2.0, 18 mm / F1.4, 35 mm / F2.4, 60 mm macro
    • Apparently nine more lenses are coming over the next three years
  • Retro design, with magnesium alloy construction; has dials for exposure compensation and shutter speed
  • Hybrid viewfinder can be optical (with data overlaid) or fully electronic
    • Viewfinder magnification changes automatically when a lens is attached
    • OVF has 90% coverage and magnifications of 0.37X or 0.6X
    • EVF resolution is 1.44 million dots, with 100% frame coverage
  • 3-inch LCD display with a whopping 1.23 million pixels
  • Full manual controls, with RAW format support (of course)
    • ISO range of 200 - 6400, expandable to 100 - 25600
    • Shutter speed range of 30 - 1/4000 sec, plus bulb mode
  • Continuous shooting at 6 frames/sec
  • Enhanced Film Simulation mode now has Pro Color Negative modes as well as monochrome filters
  • Four types of bracketing: exposure, Film Simulation mode, Dynamic Range, and ISO sensitivity
  • Hot shoe for external flash
  • Records Full HD video (1920 x 1080 @ 24 fps) with stereo sound, using the H.264 codec
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Uses NP-W126 lithium-ion battery, 300 shots per charge
  • Optional accessories include a hand grip, aperture ring, metal lens good, filters, and a leather case
  • Shipping next month; unconfirmed price is $1700 body only

More details can be found in the press release. I'm going to see if I can dig up some more product photos in the meantime.

continue reading »
 
 

Slim Panasonic Lumix DMC-SZ1 / DMC-SZ7 ultra zooms announced

Panasonic has several new cameras being introduced at CES, and the first ones that I'm going to talk about are in the new SZ-series of compact ultra zooms. Here are the details:

Lumix DMC-SZ1 [specs]

  • 16.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.1-5.9, 10X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 27 - 270 mm
  • Optical image stabilization (of the Mega OIS variety)
  • Ultra-compact body (less than 1-inch thick), comes in black, silver, red, and blue
  • 3-inch LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Intelligent Auto mode
  • Plenty of special effects, including new miniature effect and panorama shot modes
  • Records 720p video at 30 frames/second using the MPEG-4 codec
  • 70MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • 250 shots per charge using included lithium-ion battery; battery is charged internally via the USB connector (new for Panasonic cameras)
  • Price and availability TBA

Lumix DMC-SZ7 [specs] - changes:

  • 14.1 Megapixel MOS sensor
  • 3-inch LCD has 460,000 pixels
  • HDR, Handheld Nightshot, Motion Deblur, and 3D photo features
  • Shoots at 10 frames/second (for only four photos, though)
  • Records Full HD video at 1920 x 1080 / 60i (sensor output is 30p) with stereo sound, using the AVCHD codec
  • HDMI port
  • 220 shots per charge
  • Only available in black
continue reading »
 
 
 

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH6 / DMC-FH8 inexpensive compacts

Next are two models in the Lumix FH-series, which lean more toward the entry-level end of the camera spectrum. Their specs:

Lumix DMC-FH6 [specs]

  • 14.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.5-6.4, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 120 mm
  • Optical image stabilization (Mega OIS)
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Intelligent Auto mode
  • In-camera panorama stitching
  • Records 720p video using Motion JPEG codec
  • 70MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • 280 shots per charge with included lithium-ion battery; battery is charged internally
  • Available in black
  • Price, availability TBA

Lumix DMC-FH8 [specs] - changes:

  • 16.1 Megapixel CCD
  • 3-inch LCD with 230,000 pixels
  • 260 shots per charge
  • Available in silver, black, red, and violet
continue reading »
 
 
 

Panasonic Lumix DMC-S2 entry-level camera

Let's wrap up the Panasonic compact camera news with some information about their entry-level Lumix DMC-S2:

Lumix DMC-S2 [specs]

  • 14.1 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.1-6.5, 4X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 112 mm
  • Optical image stabilization (Mega OIS)
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Intelligent Auto mode
  • In-camera panorama stitching
  • Records 720p video using Motion JPEG codec
  • 70MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • 280 shots per charge using lithium-ion battery
  • Available colors include black, pink, and violet
  • Pricing, availability TBA
continue reading »
 
 
 

Panasonic releases conversion lenses for 14mm pancake, 14-42 mm power zoom lenses

Panasonic also has some news for owners of their Lumix G interchangeable lens cameras. They are now offering four conversion lenses that are compatible with the 14 - 42 mm power zoom lens as well as the 14 mm pancake lens. The lenses include:
  • DMW-GWC1 wide-angle: reduces the wide end of your lens to 11 mm (22 mm equivalent)
  • DMW-GTC1 telephoto: boosts the focal range by 2X, so your 14 - 42 will now be 84 mm at the telephoto end; sounds like you cannot attach it unless the lens is at full telephoto; not compatible with the pancake lens
  • DMW-GMC1 macro: reduces the minimum focus distance to 14 cm with the pancake lens, and 16 cm with the power zoom
  • DMC-GFC1 fisheye: gives you a 120 degree, ultra-wide view of the scene

Pricing and availability will be announced 30 days before these conversion lenses start shipping.

continue reading »
 
 
 

Look out Eye-Fi: SD Association creates new standard for Wi-Fi memory cards

I guess it was only a matter of time, but the SD Association -- who creates the standards for Secure Digital cards -- has come up with their own Wi-Fi system (sorry, Eye-Fi). As you might imagine, these cards can be used to transfer photos and videos to your computer, smartphone, or directly to social networking and photos sharing sites.

There will be two types of cards: Web interface (server upload and P2P only) and home network interface (server upload and home networks). Naturally, the 802.11b/g/n standard will be used. The Wi-Fi feature will be available not only on full-size SD/SDHC/SDXC cards, but on tiny microSD/SDHC cards, as well.

Nobody's shipping these cards yet, but I imagine it won't be long.

continue reading »
 
 
 

Canon announces PowerShot G1 X with large 1.5" sensor

Canon today introduced the PowerShot G1 X, a camera based on the popular PowerShot G12, but with a significantly larger sensor. This 14.3 Megapixel CMOS sensor is 1.5" (18.7 x 14.0 mm) in size, which is not only 6.3 times bigger than the sensor on the G12, but even larger than Micro Four Thirds. In other words, you're getting big sensor photo quality in a compact camera.

Here are some more details about the G1 X:

PowerShot G1 X [specs]

  • 14.3 Megapixel, 1.5" (18.7 x 14.0 mm) "high sensitivity" CMOS sensor
  • DIGIC 5 image processor
  • Slightly larger than the PowerShot G12; flash has been relocated, and the ISO dial has been removed, with a direct button taking its place
  • F2.8-5.8, 4X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 112 mm
    • Lens has aperture range of F2.8 - F16, which is much wider than on a typical compact camera
  • Optical image stabilization, with Intelligent IS (which selects the right IS mode when in Smart Auto mode)
  • 3-inch, rotating LCD display with 922,000 pixels
  • Optical viewfinder
  • Full manual controls, with 14-bit RAW support
    • ISO range of 100 - 12800
    • Shutter speed range of 60 - 1/4000 sec
  • Smart Auto mode selects one of 32 scene modes for you
  • Can take up to 6 photos (including RAW) at 4.5 frames/second
  • HDR (High Dynamic Range) mode; not sure if this one aligns the images, which would be a change from previous models
  • Electronic level
  • Records Full HD video at 1920 x 1080 (24p) with stereo sound and use of optical zoom
  • Hot shoe for external flash
  • Optional underwater case
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Uses NB-10L lithium-ion battery, 250 shots per charge
  • Ships in February for $799

Oh, and in case you're wondering: the PowerShot G12 will continue to be sold.

continue reading »
 
 
 

New ultra-slim Canon PowerShot ELPH 110 HS and 520 HS introduced

Moving on to more compact cameras (with the usual small sensors), we have two new members of the ELPH family. First up is the PowerShot ELPH 110 HS, which replaces the 300 HS, and not the 100 HS (don't blame me, I don't name these things). If you're after more zoom, check out the PowerShot ELPH 520 HS (which replaces the 500 HS), which has the classic blocky design of ELPHs past.

PowerShot ELPH 110 HS [specs]

  • 16 Megapixel "high sensitivity" CMOS sensor
  • DIGIC 5 image processor
  • F2.7-5.9, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 120 mm
  • Optical image stabilization, with Intelligent IS
  • Ultra-compact body comes in six colors: black, silver, red, blue, green, and pink
  • 3-inch LCD display with 461,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with Advanced Smart Auto mode, which can select one of 58 possible scenes
  • New Face ID feature lets you register up to twelve faces and assign an age group to each; focus priority is given to the youngest age group
  • Smile Recognition takes three photos and saves the best one; new Sleeping Face Recognition turns off all lights and sounds for capturing photos of sleeping babies
  • Full resolution continuous shooting at 5.8 frames/second
  • Records Full HD video (1920 x 1080 @ 24p) with stereo sound, use of optical zoom
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Uses NB-11L lithium-ion battery, 170 shots per charge
  • Ships in February for $249

PowerShot ELPH 520 HS [specs] - changes:

  • 10.1 Megapixel "high sensitivity" CMOS sensor
  • F3.4-5.6, 12X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 336 mm
  • Ultra-slim, somewhat blocky design, comes in black, silver, red, and blue
  • Continuous shooting at 6.8 frames/sec
  • Uses microSD/microSDHC cards (a first for Canon)
  • 190 shots per charge using NB-9L lithium-ion battery
  • Ships in March for $299
continue reading »
 
 
{ Sunday, January 8, 2012 }
 

Sony Alpha NEX-5N gallery updated

I've added a couple more photos to the Sony Alpha NEX-5N gallery. Unfortunately, this review is currently on hold, pending the delivery of a new 55-210 lens from Sony (apparently I got the same bad one as I did with the NEX-7). With all the craziness of CES this week, it may be a little while before this review is finished.
 
 
{ Thursday, January 5, 2012 }
 

Nikon announces their D4 flagship digital SLR

Nikon tonight announced their much-anticipated D4 professional "multi-media" digital SLR. As you might imagine, Nikon's new flagship camera has every feature under the sun, including:

Nikon D4

  • 16.2 Megapixel, FX-format (full-frame) CMOS sensor
  • New Expeed 3 image processor
  • Supports all Nikon F-mount lenses; FX-format lenses have no crop factor; DX-format lenses have a 1.5X crop factor, and image resolution is reduced to 3200 x 2128
  • 3.2" LCD display with 921,000 pixels and live view
  • Large viewfinder has 100% coverage (97% when using DX-format lenses) and a magnification of 0.7X
  • Rugged body is sealed against dust and moisture; shutter rated to 400,000 cycles
  • Full manual controls (of course)
    • Standard ISO range of 100 - 12,800, expandable to 204,800
    • Shutter speed range of 30 - 1/8000 sec
    • Supports the RAW image format, with several sizes to choose from
  • 51-point autofocus system, with 15 cross-type sensors; AF system can now detect up to 16 faces in the frame, even when shooting with the viewfinder
  • New 91,000 pixel 3D color matrix metering system
  • Continuous shooting at 10 frames/sec with AF, 11 fps without
  • Hot shoe for external flash; 1/250 sec x-sync speed
  • Four types of bracketing (Exposure, flash, white balance, and Active D-Lighting)
  • Built-in HDR and time-lapse modes
  • Illuminated buttons (!)
  • Records Full HD video at either 24p or 30p using the H.264 codec
    • Full manual controls available while recording
    • Records 720p60 video, as well
    • Camera can boost focal range by 1.5X or 2.7X in movie mode
  • Ports include microphone, headphone, and even Ethernet (!!)
  • HDMI port can output live, uncompressed video
  • Dual memory card slots support CompactFlash and new high-speed XQD format
  • Uses EN-EL18 lithium-ion battery; battery life not available
  • Optional WT-5A wireless file transmitter
  • Shipping in February for $5999, body only

Along with the D4 comes a new F1.8, 85 mm lens. This fast FX-format lens is great for portrait and low light photography, and its silent wave motor provides fast and quiet autofocus. You'll be able to pick up Nikon's newest lens in February for $499.

continue reading »
 
 
 

Fujifilm announces US pricing, availability for X-S1 super zoom

Remember the Fujifilm X-S1 super zoom that I told you about in November? It finally got a US price and release date. The X-S1 is set to ship in the States for a whopping $799. For more details, check out our original news item, or click the link below for a press release and photos.

Fuji also announced more than a dozen other cameras, but didn't bother to tell me about it. I'll write up some news items about those cameras later today.

continue reading »
 
 
 

Fuji rolls out FinePix HS25EXR and HS30EXR super zooms

The next two cameras are kind of scaled down versions of the X-S1. They have similar designs -- including manual zoom rings - but use more traditional 1/2" sensors (instead of 2/3"). The FinePix HS25 and HS30 are nearly identical on the outside, though there are a few added features for the enthusiast on the latter. Anyhow, here are the details:

FinePix HS25EXR [specs]

  • 16 Megapixel, 1/2" back-illuminated EXR CMOS sensor
    • Fuji promises 30% less noise at ISO 3200 than previous EXR CMOS sensors
    • As with all of Fuji's EXR sensors, the camera can optimize photos for high resolution, high sensitivity, or wide dynamic range (but not all at the same time)
  • F2.8-5.6, 30X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 720 mm; zoom is controlled mechanically, just like on a D-SLR
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • 3-inch, tilting LCD display with 460,000 pixels
  • 0.2" electronic viewfinder with 200,000 dots and 97% coverage; an eye sensor lets you easily switch between the LCD and EVF
  • Full manual controls
  • EXR Auto mode selects both an EXR and scene mode for you
  • Hot shoe for external flash
  • Full resolution continuous shooting at 8 frames/second; dropping down to 8 Megapixel boosts the burst rate to 11 fps
  • Can create 360 degree panoramas
  • Records Full HD video (1920 x 1080) at 30 frames/second with stereo sound and use of optical zoom
    • High speed movie mode records at frame rates as high as 320 fps (at lower resolutions)
  • 25MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC slot
  • Uses four AA batteries; 400 shots per charge with NiMH rechargeables
  • Ships in March for $399

FinePix HS30EXR [specs] - changes:

  • Larger EVF: 0.26" in size, with 920,000 dots
  • Support for RAW format
  • Electronic level
  • Uses NP-W126 lithium-ion battery, 600 shots per charge
  • Priced at $499
continue reading »
 
 
 

Fuji releases trio of compact ultra zooms

Next up from Fuji are three F-series cameras, all of which use the same EXR CMOS sensor as the HS25 and HS30 above. Here are the specs on the these three cameras:

FinePix F660EXR [specs]

  • 16 Megapixel, 1/2" back-illuminated EXR CMOS sensor, with same benefits as described above
  • F3.5-5.3, 15X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 360 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD display with 460,000 pixels
  • Full manual controls, though aperture choices will be limited due to use of ND filter
  • "Premium" EXR Auto mode chooses both EXR and scene mode, with 103 possible combinations
  • Full resolution continuous shooting at 11 frames/second (and faster at lower resolutions)
  • Motion Panorama 360 feature
  • Full HD video recording: 1920 x 1080 @ 30 fps, with stereo sound
  • High speed movies at 320 fps (at lower resolutions)
  • Optional waterproof case
  • 25MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC slot
  • Uses NP-50A lithium-ion battery, 300 shots per charge
  • Available in black
  • Ships in March for $279

FinePix F750EXR [specs] - changes:

  • F3.5-5.3, 20X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 500 mm
  • Comes in black, white, and red
  • Priced at $349

FinePix F770EXR [specs] - changes:

  • Built-in GPS with landmark navigator that points you in the direction of popular sights; sensitivity of GPS antenna is improved, so satellite acquisition times should be reduced
  • RAW format support
  • 30MB of onboard memory
  • Comes in black and red
  • Priced at $379
continue reading »
 
 
 

Meet Fuji's budget super zooms: the FinePix S4200, S4500, and SL300

Believe it or not, there are three more Fuji big zoom cameras to talk about. These are more in the budget camera territory, using traditional CCDs instead of that fancy new EXR CMOS sensor. Here are the details:

FinePix S4200 [specs]

  • 14 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.1-5.9, 24X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 576 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • 3-inch LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • 0.2" electronic viewfinder with 200,000 dots
  • Full manual controls; aperture choices will be limited due to ND filter
  • SR Auto mode picks a scene mode for you
  • Motion Panorama function (not 360 degrees though)
  • Records 720p video with monaural sound; optical zoom can be used (as with all of cameras above)
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC slot (no built-in memory)
  • Uses four AA batteries; 400 shots per charge using NiMH rechargeables
  • Ships next month for $229

FinePix S4500 [specs] - changes:

  • F3.1-5.9, 30X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 24 - 720 mm
  • Priced at $259

FinePix SL300 [specs] - changes:

  • Slightly different styling, with a secondary zoom controller on the lens barrel
  • 3-inch LCD has 460,000 pixels
  • Hot shoe for external flash
  • Uses NP-85 lithium-ion battery, 300 shots per charge
  • Ships in March for $299
continue reading »
 
 
 

Fuji FinePix T350 / T400 compact ultra zooms

Turning down the zoom power a bit, we find the FinePix T350 and T400. These are ultra-compact models with more modest 10X zooms. Here are the details on this pair:

FinePix T350 [specs]

  • 14 Megapixel CCD
  • F3.4-5.6, 10X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 280 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • Ultra-compact body, comes in black, red, and blue
  • 3-inch LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot, with scene-selected SR Auto mode
  • Motion Panorama mode
  • Records 720p video with monaural sound
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot (no internal memory)
  • Uses NP-45A/B lithium-ion battery, 160 shots per charge
  • Ships in March for $159

FinePix T400 [specs] - changes:

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • Priced at $179
continue reading »
 
 
 

Three new Fuji rugged cameras hit the ground, still work

Now onto something a little more interesting from Fujifilm: their three rugged cameras. Rugged cameras are one of the few categories that is still growing, so it's not surprising that Fuji has three new models for 2012. They include:

FinePix XP50 [specs]

  • 14 Megapixel CMOS sensor
  • F3.9-4.9, 5X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 28 - 140 mm
  • Sensor-shift image stabilization
  • Rugged body is waterproof to 5 feet, shockproof from 5 feet, freezeproof to 14F, and dustproof; comes in black, blue, orange, silver, and green
  • 2.7" LCD with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with SR Auto mode
  • Continuous shooting at 10 frames/second, though I'm not sure at what resolution
  • Built-in HDR mode (surprising that only the rugged cameras have this)
  • Motion Panorama 360 feature
  • "Couple Timer" waits until two people are close together, and you can set the level of "intimacy" -- oh, brother
  • Records Full HD video (1920 x 1080 @ 30 fps) with monaural sound and use of optical zoom
  • 95MB onboard memory + SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot
  • Uses NP-45A lithium-ion battery, 220 shots per charge
  • Ships in March for $199

FinePix XP100 [specs] - changes:

  • Even more "proof": waterproof increases to 33 feet, shockproof to 6.6 feet
  • Uses NP-50 li-ion battery, 300 shots per charge
  • Priced at $249

FinePix XP150 [specs] - changes:

  • Built-in GPS with an electronic compass and landmark database; a "navigation" feature points you in the direction of where you took a certain photo
  • Comes in black and orange
  • Priced at $279
continue reading »
 
 
 

Fuji intros entry-level FinePix JZ100 and JZ250

Our day of Fuji cameras ends with two entry-level models: the FinePix JZ100 and JZ250, both of which still pack big lenses (8X). The specs:

FinePix JZ100 [specs]

  • 14 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.9-5.9, 8X optical zoom lens, equivalent to 25 - 200 mm
  • Optical image stabilization
  • 2.7" LCD display with 230,000 pixels
  • Point-and-shoot operation, with SR Auto mode
  • Records 720p video with monaural sound
  • SD/SDHC/SDXC card slot (no internal memory)
  • Uses NP-45A/B battery, 180 shots per charge
  • Ships in March for $129

FinePix JZ250 [specs] - changes:

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • Priced at $149
continue reading »
 
 
{ Wednesday, January 4, 2012 }
 

Chapter 11 for Kodak soon

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Kodak is on the brink of filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. I can't say that I'm surprised to hear this, given the rather lackluster cameras they've produced in recent years. At the same time, Kodak was really the pioneer of digital photography, and the thousands of employees who will likely be affected by this have my sympathy. If this does indeed happen, it will be interesting to see what happens with Kodak 2.0.
 
 
{ Monday, January 2, 2012 }
 

Samsung starts off 2012 with their DualView DV300F compact camera

Samsung is the first out of the gate in 2012 with a new camera. This one is in their DualView series, which has a small LCD on the front of the camera, which is used mainly for self-portraits. In addition, the DV300F is also one of a very select group of cameras with Wi-Fi built in. Here are the details:

DualView DV300F

  • 16 Megapixel CCD
  • F2.5-6.3, 5X optical zoom, equivalent to 25 - 125 mm
  • Optical image stabilization
  • Front-facing 1.5" LCD display helps with self-portraits, counts down the self-timer, or keeps children looking toward the camera with animations
  • More traditional 3-inch, 460,000 pixel LCD on the rear
  • Built-in Wi-Fi lets you upload photos to popular sharing sites, or to cloud services like Samsung AllShare Play or Microsoft SkyDrive; camera can also backup photos to your PC wirelessly
  • Remote viewfinder functionality with Android-based smartphones
  • Point-and-shoot operation
  • Numerous special effects, like photo frames, Artistic Brush, and "Funny Face"
  • Records 720p video at 30 frames/second
  • Unknown amount of internal memory + microSD/SDHC card slot
  • Uses BP88 lithium-ion battery; battery life not available
  • Available in black, silver, blue, and red
  • Pricing/availability TBD
continue reading »
 
 
 

Sony NEX-5N gallery started

Happy New Year! I've started the Sony Alpha NEX-5N gallery, which is currently the only camera on my upcoming reviews list. That'll likely change soon, as CES is a little over a week away!

In other news, I've rolled most of the site over to a new, more secure ad server. Let me know if you see anything funny.

Here's hoping that 2012 is more prosperous for all of us!