October 4
Epson announces Stylus Photo R1900
Epson's A3+ printer line has received an upgrade with the Stylus Photo R1900, incorporating new UltraChrome Hi-Gloss2 Ink technology for enhanced color gamut, better skin tones and improved glossy finish. The new system replaces blue ink with orange in addition to modified magenta and yellow pigments and is said to offer 18,446,774 trillion colors - impressive stuff. The printer also features a new LUT (look up table) developed in conjunction with the Munsell Color Science Laboratory. The Epson Stylus Photo R1900 will be available from November 2007 at a price of £399.99, more after the jump.
October 3
ACDSee 10 Photo Manager now available
ACD Systems has released version 10 of ACDSee - its popular workflow, editing and image organization application. ACDSee now features an upload facility which aims to simplify the process of getting images onto photo-sharing sites such as Flickr and Smugmug as well as blogs and personal websites. The program can now deal with .zip archives and has the capability to create PowerPoint presentations. Priced at US $49.99, ACDSee 10 is available now via the ACD Systems site where a 30-day trial is also offered.
New EU rules set to limit video capture
The CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) has today released a statement on the recent re-classification of certain digital cameras as 'video camera recorders'. The new EU rule states that any digital still camera with a resolution higher than 800x600 and the duration of video of 30 minutes of more (at 23 fps or higher) must now be classified as a 'video camera recorder' and hence be taxed at a higher rate. This new legislation will undoubtedly mean that any promise of serious video capture on digital still cameras becomes an even more remote possibility. The only plus side to the EU's recent announcement is that the threat of retroactive charges appears to have been dropped. CIPA's standpoint is: "Arbitrary and unilateral tariff classification having been executed by the EU authorities for the products eligible for the ITA (Information Technology Agreement) is infringement of the ITA. Thus, the CIPA will continue to make claims for the invalidity of the relevant action similar to this case in the trade area from now on so that other IT products will not be affected by such action."
Sigma SD14 firmware v1.05 adds ISO 50
Sigma has made available firmware v1.05 for its SD14 DSLR. The big news with this latest release is the addition of ISO 50 to the camera's extended mode. This comes with the warning of reduced 'headroom' - read dynamic range - and suggestions on how to cope with this side-effect. The update also implements fixes aimed at improving stability of the camera and is available now from Sigma's site, link after the jump.
October 2
Live view from a distance with DSLR Remote Pro v1.5
Breeze Systems today announced availability of DSLR Remote Pro v1.5, adding support for Canon's EOS 40D and 1D Mark III. The software allows the live view feature of these cameras to be operated remotely including contrast-detection autofocus. This is currently a unique capability with interesting possibilities for many fields of photography. DSLR Remote Pro v1.5 is available now at a price of US $95 - or $75 until the end of October for users of Breezebrowser Pro. A 15 day trial version is also available from Breeze Systems, link after the jump.
October 1
Pentax-DA 18-250mm F3.5-6.3
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Pentax today announced its 18-250mm 14x superzoom covering an equivalent focal range of 27.5 - 383 mm. Alongside the hulking zoom range it also boasts internal focus and a closest focus distance of 45 cm (17.7 in) throughout the zoom range - giving a reproduction ratio of around 1:3. One ED (Extra-low Dispersion) and two AL (Aspherical) elements in its design help to minimize optical aberrations. The lens will be available from October 2007 with a recommended price of US $499.95. More info and specifications after the jump.
Pentax Optio V10
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The Pentax Optio V10 is a 8.0 megapixel digicam featuring 3x optical zoom and 3.0" LCD squeezed into an aluminum alloy shell just 19mm thick - Pentax having achieved this feat of miniaturization through a redesigned circuit board and extra-slim battery. Face Detection AF & AE, Digital Shake Reduction and a wealth of automatic scene modes round off the specification. The Pentax Optio V10 will be available from October 2007 with a recommended price of US $249.95, more after the jump.
Pentax Optio A40
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Pentax today unveiled the Optio A40, a 3x zoom compact featuring a large 1/1.7" sensor for improved low-light abilities. CCD-shift image stabilization keeps the shakes at bay whilst the videos are recorded in DivX format allowing for smaller file sizes. Shutter-priority and manual exposure are here alongside Pentax's customary automatic modes. The camera will be available from October 2007 with a recommended price of US $299.95. More after the click.
September 26
Ricoh Caplio R7 firmware 1.20
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Ricoh has made available firmware version 1.20 for its recently-launched Caplio R7. The update improves AF accuracy and fixes a bug where 3:2 images are recorded incorrectly when the bracketing feature is used. The update is available now from Ricoh's support site, link after the click.
Canon launches Selphy ES2 and ES20
Canon today launched two new additions to its Selphy range of dye-sublimation printers, offering up to 6x4" prints with the minimum of hassle. The Canon Selphy E2 replaces the previous ES1 and sports an articulated 3.0" LCD, wireless printing via IrDA (Bluetooth with an optional adaptor) and may be powered from an optional battery pack. The Selphy E20 meanwhile features a fixed 2.5" screen and does without wireless connectivity and battery power.
September 24
Adobe Photoshop Elements 6
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Adobe has released version 6 of Photoshop Elements, improving ease of use and featuring new tools such as Photomerge to combine the best parts of several group shots. There is a new Quick Selection tool and three edit modes aimed at different skill levels. This latest release is available now for Windows - a Mac version will follow in early 2008 - for US$99.99 (upgrade $79.99) or $149.99 bundled with Adobe's Premiere Elements 4 video-editing software.
September 21
Nikon D3 hands-on preview
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Just posted! Our latest hands-on preview of the very latest as-yet unreleased digital SLRs continues with the Nikon D3, the bigger brother to the D300. Nikon's first full-frame digital SLR also features live view, a high resolution three inch LCD monitor and HDMI output. See how the D3 is shaping up in our twelve page hands-on preview.
September 18
Adobe updates Lightroom and Camera Raw
Adobe has updated its Photoshop Lightroom workflow software and Camera Raw plug-in to support 14 new camera models. The updates also include improved noise-reduction and minor bug fixes when running on Windows Vista. Lightroom 1.2 is available as a free upgrade to existing users or may be purchased for US $299. Camera Raw 4.2 is free to download for users of Photoshop CS3, Photoshop Elements 4.0 for Mac and Elements 5.0 for Windows.
ACDSee Pro 2
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ACDsee Pro 2 has arrived with support for many new camera RAW formats and enhanced image processing. RAW files may be exported to different formats and sizes simultaneously with renaming and embedding of color profiles integrated into the workflow. ACDSee Pro 2 is available now via the ACD Systems website, link after the click.
September 9
Nikon D300 hands-on preview
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Just posted! Our detailed hands-on preview of the Nikon D300 digital SLR. Our preview covers the design of the camera, control layout, operation use, displays and menus. Also included is a closer look at the D300 implementation of live view including videos of it in use. We've also explored HDMI output and included a couple of 720p video clips to give you an idea of how high definition may change the way we use video output on digital cameras.
September 6
Sony Alpha DSLR-A700, previewed
Nearly two years after Konica Minolta transferred its camera division over to Sony, and over a year after Sony's first DSLR (the A100), today is the day that the curtain is finally lifted on the long-awaited 'high end' Alpha digital SLR (in principle the replacement for the Konica Minolta 7D). The new model sports an impressive specification including magnesium alloy construction, 12MP CMOS sensor (with on-chip A/D conversion), 5fps shooting and a wealth of features and customization options, though interestingly (given the recent spate of announcements) no live view option. There's also a couple of new lenses and a new vertical shooting grip. We've had a pre-production A700 for a couple of weeks in order to produce a detailed hands-on preview, available now.
September 5
Bibble 4.9.8e adds Canon 40D support
Bibble Labs has updated its raw converter to include support for three new cameras - The Canon EOS 40D, Pentax K100D Super and Fujifilm Finepix E550 (hmm, that's not so new but welcome nonetheless). The 40D support includes tethered shooting and sRAW compatibility. The software, which also incorporates some bug fixes is available now and it's a free update for existing users of Bibble 4.
September 4
Olympus E-1 successor on 17th October
We have just received official word that Olympus will reveal the successor to their top-of-the-range E-1 digital SLR, currently dubbed the E-P1 although rumored to be called the E-3, on 17th October. While no details about the camera have yet been officially announced there have been numerous leaks point to ten megapixels, Liveview, in-body image stabilization (like the E-510), five frames per second and eleven area auto-focus (as well as normal pro features such as full metal body, weatherproofing, etc.).
August 31
SanDisk launches ExpressCard adapter
SanDisk today launched a speedy card reader for ExpressCard-equipped notebook computers. The SanDisk Multi Card ExpressCard™ Adapter, to give it its full name, is compatible with SD and Memory Stick Duo form-factors (and all current variants of these) but omits full-size Memory Sticks. It should reach North American stores sometime in Sept 2007 for around $29.99. European pricing is yet to be announced.
SanDisk doubles Ultra II capacities
SanDisk today announced the availability of higher capacities in its Ultra II range of flash media with 4GB SDHC Plus and 8GB Memory Stick PRO DUO cards. The SDHC follows SanDisk's clever and useful two-in-one design with integrated USB connector for effortless data transfer. Worldwide availability is expected by October 2007.
Casio developing 300 fps CMOS based camera
Casio has today revealed plans of an as yet unnamed twelve times zoom, six megapixel CMOS based digital camera which can capture a burst of full-size six megapixel images at sixty frames per second and VGA AVI movies at an astonishing three hundred frames per second (obviously shutter speed allowing). Exact specifications and details are currently a little vague but we do know that it has a 2.8" wide-screen LCD monitor, electronic viewfinder and sensor-shift image stabilization. UPDATED: Press Release, high resolution images added.
August 30
Panasonic DMC-L10, previewed
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Eighteen months after the L1 took PMA 2006 by storm Panasonic has announced its second digital SLR, the Lumix DMC-L10. As well as a more conventional design and a new 10MP LiveMOS sensor (which we presume is the same as that used in the Olympus E-410) the L10 features a wealth of new features including a fully articulated screen and live view with sensor-based (contrast detect) autofocus. Like the L1 the new camera is only available in kit for with a (new) Leica branded lens (for more about the lens, see below). We've had a pre-production L10 for a couple of weeks in order to produce a detailed hands-on preview, available now.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14-50mm F3.8-5.6 Mega OIS
Panasonic has also come up with a smaller, lighter 28-100m equiv. kit lens for its DMC-L10 - the Leica D Vario-Elmar 14-50mm F3.8-5.6 Mega OIS (note the ELMAR label which in Leica nomenclature denotes a simpler lens than the existing ELMARIT). The new lens also omits an aperture ring and focus distance scale from the specifications and provides a larger zoom ring as well as supporting the L10's contrast-detect AF in Live-View.
Leica D Vario-Elmar 14-150mm F3.5-5.6 Asph. Mega OIS
Panasonic has its answer to the 28-300mm equiv. DSLR 'superzoom' in the form of the new Leica D Vario-Elmar 14-150mm F3.5-5.6 Asph Mega OIS. Optically stabilized as are all the Lumix lenses, focus is quiet and swift as this is the first lens from Panasonic to utilize XS (eXtra Silent) supersonic focusing. The package has remained compact and lightweight thanks to the four aspherical elements used in its design. It is due to be available from 'around' November 2007.
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Kodak today announced three new EASYSHARE digital cameras along with an HDTV-capable EASYSHARE Dock. The V1253 and V1233 share 12 megapixel sensors and 3x SCHNEIDER-KREUZNACH lenses with the V1253 getting a larger 3.1" screen versus the V1233's 2.5". Both shoot 720p video and 16:9 stills and feature face-detection and digital image-stabilization. The Z812 IS meanwhile has optical image-stabilization to go with its 8 megapixels and 12x zoom range. Kodaks new HDTV Dock explains itself really. The cameras will be available from September 2007 with the dock following a month later in October.
Nikon Coolpix P5100
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Nikon today announced its new flagship compact digital camera - the COOLPIX P5100. This update from the P5000 uses a variant of Nikon's new EXPEED image processor along with a slightly larger 12.1 megapixel sensor. The lens is unchanged - 3.5x zoom optically-stabilized with Nikon's VR technology. However the sensor change has widened the field of view to 35-123mm equiv. The P5100 also has in-camera distortion correction which works in real time to correct the live preview as well as stored images.
Nikon Coolpix P50
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The COOLPIX P50 is an 8.1 megapixel compact digital camera aimed at photographers after a bit more control. The body is modeled after the P5100 with a nice big hand-grip. A 3.6x 28-102mm equiv. lens, Electronic VR (software-stabilization) and ISO 2000 capability help in lower light. The COOLPIX P50 will be available in the UK from Sept 2007 priced at £199.99.
Nikon Coolpix S700
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The second metal bodied compact Nikon with an image stabilized lens is the S700. Get ready to be a little bit afraid because this camera packs twelve megapixels behind its three times optical zoom lens (F2.8 - F5.4). Naturally like all the cameras today the S700 gets 'EXPEED', lets hope it has an effective noise reduction algorithm. The S700 will cost £279.99 and will be available from 'Autumn 2007'.
Nikon Coolpix S510
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The Nikon COOLPIX S510 is claimed to be the world's smallest digital camera with optical image-stabilization, as well as the most responsive (among 8MP optically-stabilized compacts). There's also Nikon's new EXPEED image processor to deal with images from the 8.1 megapixel sensor. The lens is equivalent to 35-105mm and the camera will cost £199.99 from Sept 2007.
Nikon Coolpix S51c / S51
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Nikon has a pair of updates to its S-series of wave-like internal zoom compact digital cameras. The COOLPIX S51c and its non-identical twin the S51 share 7.99 megapixel sensors and VR-stabilized 38-114mm equivalent optics along with a 3.0" anti-reflective screen. The S51c incorporates Wi-Fi connectivity for wireless image transfer. The COOLPIX S51c and COOLPIX S51 will be priced at £229.99 and £199.99 respectively from Sept 2007.
Nikon Coolpix L15
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Compared to the L14 the COOLPIX L15 adds VR and an 8.0 megapixel sensor. Its lens equates to a 35-105mm zoom range and it has a larger 2.8" 230,000 dot LCD (so more of the same, a subtly different price and another piece of shelf space owned). The camera will be in UK shops from Sept 2007 priced at £129.99
Nikon Coolpix L14
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Nikon's COOLPIX L14 is an entry-level compact digital camera with the claim to fame of being the 3x zoom compact with the longest battery life (as of 30th August 2007). Nikon claim one can squeeze out over 1000 shots from a pair of Lithium AAs. It's also got 7.1 megapixels, a 2.4" LCD and a 38-114 (equiv.) lens. Priced at £129.99, the COOLPIX L14 should be in UK shops from Sept 2007.
August 29
Delkin UDMA FireWire 800 CompactFlash reader
Delkin now has a CompactFlash reader compatible with both UDMA and FireWire 400/800, promising maximum download speeds over 45MB per second. The new reader is Mac OS X and Windows compatible and is equally happy with Type I and II CompactFlash media as well as MicroDrives. The reader is shipping now and should be available in stores soon for $89.99 (£49.99)
August 28
Ricoh Caplio R7
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Ricoh has updated its R-series of big-zoom compacts with the Caplio R7. The optical specs remain the same as its predecessor the R6 with a 28-200mm equivalent lens and CCD-shift image stabilization but the capture side gets an overhaul with an 8.15 megapixel sensor - up from 7.2 MP - and an upgrade to image processing with Smooth Imaging Engine III. Available in black, silver or orange, the Caplio R7 will be in UK shops from September 2007 at under £230.
Casio EXILIM EX-V8 and EX-Z1080
Casio today announced its EXILIM EX-V8 and EX-Z1080 compact digital cameras, making much of their YouTube™ Capture Mode. The 8.1 megapixel EX-V8 fits a 7x 38-266 equivalent lens totally within its slim shell and irons out any shakes with a CCD-shift image stabilization system. The EX-Z1080 ups the pixel count to 10.1 and sports a 3x 38-114 equivalent zoom. Modern H.264/AVC video encoding ensures movie file sizes remain small yet high quality and YouTube™ Capture Mode sets all the right parameters for easy posting via the company's unique “YouTube™ Uploader for CASIO” software. Other headline features include face-detection, Anti Shake DSP and sensitivities up to ISO 6400.
August 25
Canon EOS 40D Beta Samples Gallery
We have just updated our Canon EOS 40D Preview with a gallery of sample images taken with a pre-production camera. We had aimed to do this earlier this week but have been at the whim of the 'British summer'. Results so far seem to be encouraging, you must however bear in mind that this is an early camera and results from the final production units may differ. Please treat our gallery server with respect and only download full size originals when absolutely necessary.
August 23
Pentax announces Optio Z10 and S10
Pentax today announced its Optio Z10 and S10 compact digital cameras. The Optio Z10 is a slimline 8.0 megapixel device with a non-protruding 7x zoom lens giving a range of 38-266mm (35mm equiv.). The Optio S10 - which is available exclusively through Wal-Mart stores in the US - boasts 10.0 megapixels and a 3x zoom (38-114mm equiv.). Both cameras will be available from September with a price tag of $249.95.
Nikon D300, previewed
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In addition to the FX format (Full-frame) D3 Nikon has also announced the new DX format D300 which also features a 12 megapixel CMOS sensor, 14-bit A/D conversion, EXPEED image processor, sensitivity up to ISO 6400 (with boost), the new CAM3500DX AF sensor (51 point), HDMI video output, UDMA CF support and last but not least the super-impressive 3.0" 922,000 pixel LCD monitor with Live View. No ordinary Live View either as this one supports Auto Focus in two ways; using the current 'normal' mirror-drop / mirror-raise but also contrast detect in the same way as a compact camera (although slower). The D300 will be available in November, at around US$1800.
Nikon D3, Full-Frame, previewed
It's here, after perhaps the longest period of speculation ever Nikon has today lifted the covers on their first full-frame digital SLR, the new 12.1 megapixel D3. The D3 is all about speed and sensitivity, twelve megapixels on a big CMOS chip means large photosites (8.45 µm pitch to be precise) and that adds up to base sensitivity of ISO 200 to 6400 with an additional two stop boost over that (up to ISO 25600). The other side of the speed story (apart from blistering AF and shutter lag) is that the D3 can shoot at nine frames per second with AF tracking or eleven frames per second without. Other headline features are a newly branded EXPEED image processor, a new 51-point AF sensor, color AF tracking, dual CF compartments (with UDMA support), an amazing 3.0" 922,000 pixel LCD monitor with Live View (including contrast detect auto-focus), HDMI video output and even a virtual horizon function which can tell you when you're holding the camera perfectly level. There's too much to fit here so we crammed as much as we can into a preview. The D3 will be available in November, at around US$5000.
Nikon AF-S 14-24 mm and 24-70 mm F2.8G ED
Nikon has announced a pair of new professional AF-S lenses, first comes the AF-S 14-24 mm F2.8G ED which promises to offer a huge field of view on the new FX format D3 digital SLR. The lens is made up of fourteen elements in eleven groups, two of which are ED glass, three aspherical. There's also a "Nano Crystal Coat" which features in all the lenses announced today, it's designed to cut down internal reflection within the lens which can be a particular problem with the reflective surface of a digital SLR sensor. Next is the AF-S 24-70 mm F2.8G ED a new slimline (by F2.8 lens standards) lens which will provide wide to just beyond standard field of view on the D3. Both lenses will be available this November, no pricing yet.
Three new super telephoto Nikon AF-S VR lenses
Nikon has today announced three new super telephoto lenses to coincide nicely with their first full-frame DSLR, the D3. They are the AF-S 400 mm F2.8G ED VR, the AF-S 500 mm F4G ED VR and the AF-S 600 mm F4G ED VR. These fast aperture 'big reach' lenses are perfectly suited to the types of photography the D3 is aimed at; sports and news. All three lenses feature 'Nano Crystal Coat' which cuts down internal reflections as well as Nikon's Vibration Reduction II optical stabilization system which claims to enable up to four stops slow shutter speeds. Weight wise obviously these are big lenses, in order; 4.9 KG, 3.9 KG and 5.1 KG. Available this November, no pricing yet.
Olympus SP-560 UZ
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Olympus today announced its SP-560 UZ - successor to the SP-550 UZ which caused quite a stir on announcement with its unprecedented 18x zoom. It's still here but the move to a slightly larger sensor has shifted the range toward the wide. The specs now read 27- 486 mm rather than topping out on the far side of 500 mm. Olympus has fitted this camera out with all it's latest technology so let's hope the slightly disappointing image quality we encountered with the 550 is a thing of the past.
Olympus Stylus 1200
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The Stylus 1200 tops off that particular range - known as mju in markets beyond the US. Combining 12 Megapixels with the latest and greatest innovations including Face-Detection, Shadow Adjustment Technology and the new TruePic III image processor. The 3x 35-105mm equivalent zoom is a little tame but you can't deny it's one cool-looking little digicam.
Olympus Stylus 830
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Next we have the Stylus 830 which shares most of it's features with the 820 but adds Dual Image Stabilization - a combination of optical stabilization and ISO boost. Available in silver or black, the casing is weatherproofed as a Stylus (or mju as they are known outside the US) should be.
Olympus Stylus 820
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The Olympus Stylus 820 squeezes 8.0 Megapixels, a healthy 5x 36-180mm equivalent zoom lens and a 2.7" LCD into it's sleek, weatherproof* frame. We have Face Detection with Smile Shot to trip the shutter only after your subject cracks a grin and Shadow Adjustment Technology to pull a little more detail from murky areas.
Olympus Stylus 790 SW
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Olympus is known for its robust SW line of ruggedized digital cameras and has today added the 7.1 Megapixel Stylus 790 SW - known as the µ [mju:] 790 SW outside the US. According to Olympus this tough little digicam will withstand falls of 1.5m and a dip in the water down to 3m so it should survive even the most exciting night out. ISO 1600, A 3x zoom and Face-Detection round out the headline features and an LED Macro Illuminator could come in handy for close-ups.
Olympus FE-300
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Well here we go with the big pixel counts. The FE-300 packs 12 miliion of them and ISO settings up to 6400 - albeit with the assistance of pixel-binning so you won't be gettng the sensor's full resolution, ISO 1600 is the limit at 12 MP. The rest of the specs are pretty standard with a 2.5" LCD, 3x zoom starting at 35mm equivalent and the Face-Detection with added Smile Shot mode.
Olympus FE-290
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Wider is better with the Olympus FE-290. Bringing a 28-112mm (35mm equiv.) lens within reach of the masses, it also sports a generous 3" LCD and 7.1 Megapixel sensor. Concentrating on usability and versatility, we can only hope that cameras like the FE-290 will set a trend towards more practical lens specifications at the lower end of the market.
Olympus FE-280
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Next up we have the 8 Megapixel FE-280 which ups the 'bling factor' with a stainless casing available in four colors for those who simply can't abide plain old silver. The technology is here too with Face-Detection and - wait for it - smile detection (we predict this to be the next must-have feature now that just about every camera can track faces). Also making it's debut appearance is a new TruePic III processor to make the most of all those pixels.
Olympus FE-270
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Olympus today announced the FE-270 - a no-frills entry level digital camera aimed at providing an higher quality alternative to cellphone cameras. That's right, it seems the manufacturers are finally admitting that these devices are cutting into their market. That said the FE-270 should comfortably exceed the performance of even the fanciest phonecam with its 3x zoom lens and - crucially larger - 7.1 Megapixel sensor.