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:
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
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
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.
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.
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:
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:
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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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!
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:
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
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
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:
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
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.
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:
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!
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
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:
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.
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: