May18

In a move no doubt timed to coincide with Canon's announcement of the EOS-D30 yesterday, FujiFilm today announced the S1 Pro will be available (on sale) on July 8th at 375,000 YEN in Japan. That (at todays exchange rates) works out at around US$3,500 which is almost identical to the price stated by Canon US yesterday for the EOS-D30. (Although notably Canon Europe state a price of 3000 EUR; $2700 and Canon France 20,000 FFr; $2700).

Comments 0 Published: May 18, 2000 at 04:00
DCEX & PC Watch post FujiFilm S1 Pro samples

Roll up, Roll up, get yer S1 Pro samples here, they're free ladies and gentlement... The Japanese Digital Camera webzine DCEX have published six sample images in a range of situations from FujiFilm's S1 Pro digital SLR. The camera features a 3.2 megapixel SuperCCD which (when combined with internal interpolation algorigthms) generates a 6 megapixel image. Each image is a 2.5MB JPEG (3,040 x 2,016).

Phil says: Bit soft at 1:1, but downsampled they're pretty sweet, you can't fault the colour balance or metering. A couple of the PC Watch samples show good dynamic range.

UPDATED!! PC Watch post EVEN MORE SAMPLES...

Comments 0 Published: May 18, 2000 at 04:00
May17
Canon Digital Ixus / S100 Elph hands-on

Read the official announcement below, I had an exclusive hands-on with this tiny, steel cased, power packed digicam and have summarised my impressions along with some exclusive photos of the camera.

UPDATED: Sample images available.

Comments 0 Published: May 17, 2000 at 04:00
Canon announce Digital Ixus / S100 Elph
Tokyo, 13:00. As part of a worldwide announcement of new digital camera products Canon today revealed the smallest, lightest 2.1 megapixel digital camera yet - Digital Ixus (known as the Powershot S100 Digital Elph in the USA). Clad in a strong steel case with a completely flat face (switched off) it measures a minuscule 87 x 57 x 26.9mm (3.4 x 2.2 x 1") - front on that's about the same size as a credit card, weighs in at just 190 g (6.7 oz).
Comments 0 Published: May 17, 2000 at 04:00
May16
TSMC, one of the biggest IC foundries in the world announced volume production of CMOS sensors. "Using TSMC as its IC foundry, OmniVision offers the OV7600 series of completely programmable digital imaging devices with a VGA (video graphic array) resolution image array size of 640x480 pixels. The OV7600 combines the sensor array with an on-chip A/D converter that delivers 8-bit and 16-bit parallel digital output."
Comments 0 Published: May 16, 2000 at 04:00
Kodak DCS 620X
Kodak today announced an enhanced version of the DCS620 named the DCS620X. The major new feature is the new camera's ability to work at very high ISO's (up to ISO 6400), typically trying to get this amount of sensitivity out of a CCD is a problem but with a new CMY colour pattern allowing more light through and some noise reduction processing built into the cameras firmware Kodak think the DSC620X will produce usable high quality images even at high ISOs. List price $10,495.
Comments 0 Published: May 16, 2000 at 04:00

According to JEIDA (Japan Electronic Industry Development Association) Japanese shipments of digital camera almost doubled to 5.82 million over the past year. This number rose to 82% in the year to March, 31. By value shipments rose 72% from a year earlier to 255.88 billion Yen ($2.34 billion). These rises were attributed to new 2 and 3 megapixel models.

Comments 0 Published: May 16, 2000 at 04:00
Rob Galbraith's D1 custom settings cheat sheet
Cruising over to Rob's website I noticed he's published a PDF "cheat sheet" of custom settings for the Nikon D1, which when printed can be cut and stuck to the LCD cover for quick reference to those otherwise indecipherable numerical settings.
Comments 0 Published: May 16, 2000 at 04:00
May15
Canon S10 firmware update now available
There'll be a collective sigh of relief from S10 owners. Canon have release firmware 1.0.0.2 for download which has been seen already on new S10's. The procedure for update is different depending on whether you have a CF card reader or not so read the download page very carefully. Fixes are: IBM Microdrive compatibility, faster (1/30s) shutter speed for flash shots, auto whitebalance automatically for flash shots.
Comments 0 Published: May 15, 2000 at 04:00
May14
Thumber version 3.14
Thanks to Max Lyons for letting me know he's released version 3.14 of Thumber. Thumber allows you to examine your digital camera images in detail, it's able to extract that all important EXIF information (exposure, camera settings etc.), can do lossless JPEG rotation and it'll also create webpages based on a folder of images or output exposure information to text files.
Comments 0 Published: May 14, 2000 at 04:00
May13
Imaging-Resource post a full Nikon D1 review
Dave over at Imaging-Resource has completed the mammoth task of reviewing Nikon's D1. Here's a comment he made "One thing that we did that was a little unusual was to run resolution tests on a fairly wide variety of different lenses. Turns out the D1 really shines with good glass, really shows up the limitations of the cheap stuff. (Don't know that I'll ever look at my Tamron 28-300 mm "vacation lens" the same again. OTOH, I'm now more impressed than ever with the sharpness of my Micro Nikkor 105 f/2.8.) A note for the future for all of us: Lens choice really does make a significant difference in resolution on the pro digicams. "
Comments 0 Published: May 13, 2000 at 04:00
May12
Imaging-Resource post Sony DSC-S50 review
Imaging-Resource have just posted their Sony DSC-S50 (1.92 million effective pixels - 1600 x 1200) review. Here's what Dave had to say: "By contrast, the S50 arrived in the midst of a batch of 3 megapixel models, so we initially weren't terribly impressed with its resolution. Imagine our surprise then, when we compared it with other two megapixel digicams, and found that it tested right up there with the very best of them."
Comments 0 Published: May 12, 2000 at 04:00
Sanyo and Kodak will demonstrate a 5.5" (low resolution: 320 x 240) OLED display panel at the Society for Information Display 2000 International Symposium next week in Long Beach, Calif. The advantages of OLED (organic electroluminescent light-emitting diode) displays is their low power consumption, low drive voltage, high refresh rates and brightness. Although this prototype is limited lets hope that this kind of display technology filters down for use in smaller devices such as digital cameras.
Comments 0 Published: May 12, 2000 at 04:00
Steve updates his High-Capacity Storage report
Steve Sanders maintains a "high-capacity memory storage options" report, he's just finished updating it with info on the largest available Type I and II CF cards along with interesting info on upcoming storage technologies and the differences between different types of miniture (but high capacity) digital camera storage. An excellent read.
Comments 0 Published: May 12, 2000 at 04:00
Kodak still seen as "old economy" company
Kodak's Chairman complains of bad image: Photography giant Eastman Kodak Co. (NYSE:EK - news) has not told its story effectively to a stock market that still views it as an "old economy'' company, Chairman George Fisher said, noting Kodak's stock price has lagged despite record earnings... ...If you look at our digital revenues, it's $2.5 billion now,'' Fisher said.
Comments 0 Published: May 12, 2000 at 04:00
Modified Nikon Coolpix 950 for Karen Darke
This from the Nikon website: Physically challenged British Woman Takes a 60-Day Journey Across Japan Using a Specially Designed "Hand-cycle" . On April 3, 2000, Ms. Karen DARKE set out from Sapporo, on the island of Hokkaido, to begin a two-month journey she has dubbed "Don't Give Up Your Dreams." Nikon has provided Karen with a specially modified COOLPIX 950 digital camera, that will enable her to document her hand-cycle trip through Japan.
Comments 0 Published: May 12, 2000 at 04:00
May10
Toshiba reveal 2GB PCMCIA Type II HD
Here's one for all you Pro photographers with digital cameras which will take PCMCIA. Toshiba today announced a 55g (1.9 oz) PCMCIA Type II (5mm high) Hard Disk with a capacity of 2GB with a low power requirement of 0.5W @ 3.3V.
Comments 0 Published: May 10, 2000 at 04:00
May9
ACDSee Mac Beta version available
One of my favourite image browsers for Windows is now available (as Beta) on the Mac. ACDSee soon became my favourite a few years ago as it is simply the fastest rendering JPEG viewer / thumbnailer around, it also features the ability to do lossless JPEG rotations (in groups if required) and view camera metadata (EXIF exposure information). ACDSee allows you to view up to 40 different file formats...
Comments 0 Published: May 9, 2000 at 04:00
Plenty of reading for you all. Firstly if as if nobody noticed we published our C-3030Z review yesterday along with a comparison with the Coolpix 990. Imaging-Resource posted their (now complete) Sony DSC-S70 (sharp-stick) review (with promise of an S50 review this week) and Steves-Digicams has just posted a FujiFilm FinePix 1400 review...
Comments 0 Published: May 9, 2000 at 04:00
May8
Just posted! Olympus C-3030Z Review
Hot on the heels of our Coolpix 990 review comes the Olympus C-3030Z. "Olympus's upgraded C-2020Z is the C-3030Z, with pretty much similar features to its older brother but with a nice new black metallic case, wider shooting angles and the 3.3 megapixel CCD. The C-3030Z will probably be up near the top of most buyers lists and just like the C-2020Z there'll always be a fierce debate over the Olympus C-3030Z and Nikon Coolpix 990. " We've also updated the Nikon Coolpix 990 review with the same "Olympus C-3030Z vs. Nikon Coolpix 990 page" and a new chromatic aberration test shot.
Comments 0 Published: May 8, 2000 at 04:00
May7
Imaging-Resource's Sony S70 review
Hats off to Imaging-Resource for getting the scoop on Sony's Zeiss powered DSC-S70.. Sharper than a very sharp knife in a sharpening shop and more resolution than we've seen so far from a consumer digital camera (kewl). Colour balance looks pretty good too (though there is some noise). Heads up Nikon, Olympus and Canon... Sony & Zeiss are here. (If you can put up with the menu system ;)
Comments 0 Published: May 7, 2000 at 04:00
Megapixel.Net publish May 2000 issue
The guys over at Bi-Lingual Megapixel.Net have just published their May 2000 edition with reviews of the Olympus-C3030Z, Casio QV-3000EX, FujiFilm FinePix 1400 and RCA CDS4100 (wah weird). They also have articles on the use of photos on the web, readers issues and a CMOS digital camera.
Comments 0 Published: May 7, 2000 at 04:00
May4
This in from Infortrends: good news no doubt for digicam manufacturers and digicam websites alike ;-) A new study from InfoTrends Research Group reveals that revenue from digital camera sales in North America will reach $1.9 billion this year, exceeding revenue generated from film camera sales by almost 10%. Digital camera unit sales will exceed film cameras by 2002, growing from 6.7 million in 2000 to 42 million in 2005.
Comments 0 Published: May 4, 2000 at 04:00
Epson PhotoPC 3000Z (3.34 mp)
In case you missed it... We reported on Epson's 3.34mp CP900Z previously as a Japanese model, it'll enter the US / European market renamed the PhotoPC 3000Z and we've just added its specifications to our digital camera database... All the specifications inside.
Comments 0 Published: May 4, 2000 at 04:00
May3
The effect of temperature on CCD's
And a great new way to take quality night shots with your digicam (Nikon Coolpix 990 used for these samples). I've known this for a long time, but didn't explore it with the new 3.3 megapixel digicams. The "dark current" noise increases with temperature. Thanks to Dave Martindale for detailing this, "dark current noise is exponentially related to temperature - it DOUBLES for every 6 or 8 degrees C temperature rise (depending on the CCD)." Taking this practically I took one shot with the camera at room temperature, leaving the camera outside for 20 minutes and took another... the results speak for themselves.
Comments 0 Published: May 3, 2000 at 04:00
Even longer exposures: 15 & 30 seconds
Something I'd have never attempted with a digital camera if I'd not experienced the huge decrease in dark noise from my experiments yesterday. Tonight I took a few (no style) shots after letting the camera cool down to the outside temperature (about 10oC), using a Nikon Coolpix 990 in BULB mode, EagleEye Wing, Shutter release arm & cable.
Comments 0 Published: May 3, 2000 at 04:00
May2
Sony US officially announce F505V
Something we reported last week, me thinks Sony need to start doing worldwide announcements (theres this thing called the Internet don't you know...) "Second Generation Cyber-Shot(TM) Digital Camera Offers More User Control and Improved Images With 3.3 Mega-Pixel CCD and Advanced Manual/In-Camera Options". US Availability is said to be June, priced at $900 (the same street price as the F505) and that makes it very competitive against the rest of the 3 megapixel mob.
Comments 0 Published: May 2, 2000 at 21:58
May1
Halo 250MB CF Type I Microdrive
A product which was mentioned by Mike Rubin of Nikon, and once again on our News Discussion forum, Halo Data Devices are working on a 250MB Microdrive which is in a CF Type I form factor, meaning it would in theory work in all existing CF Digicams (including we hope the Coolpix 990). Brief specs are: CF Type I, 250MB, 5400RPM, 5ms average read time, 10g. Availability Mid-2000.
Comments 0 Published: May 1, 2000 at 04:00
FujiFilm announce 4700z availability
FujiFilm have produced a very carefully worded press release announcing that the 4700Z is now available at retailers all over the US. "Pocketable, stylish, yet solidly built, the FinePix 4700 ZOOM builds upon the legacy of its MX-700, MX-2700 and MX-1700 ZOOM predecessors with an added twist; it's the first digital camera to utilize Fujifilm's new Super CCD for increased sensitivity, improved signal-to-noise ratio and wider dynamic range, attributes that result in sharp, vivid and colorful pictures. " (Note, no mention of pixels).
Comments 0 Published: May 1, 2000 at 04:00
Focus-Online back online (!)
James Wakefield over at Focus-Online sent me news that after six weeks of downtime (thanks to his webhosting company going bankrupt) he's back online and ramping up with plenty of new content. Focus Online is a well established source of 'traditional photography' information, maintained by James Wakefield the editor there's plenty of reviews of 35mm cameras and lots of readers photos.
Comments 0 Published: May 1, 2000 at 04:00
DCResource post Coolpix 990 vs. Olympus C-3030Z article
The Digital Camera Resource Page have posted a Nikon Coolpix 990 vs. Olympus C-3030Z head-to-head, here's what Jeff has to say "After a non-stop week of working on this darn thing, I've finally posted the most extensive DCRP review ever: The Nikon Coolpix 990 vs. Olympus C-3030Z, the two hottest 3.3 Megapixel cameras at the moment (this week, at least). This time I covered not only What's in the Box, Look and Feel, and Using the Camera, but I've also done tests (most rather unscientific) on the cameras' abilities at: movies, macro shots, night shots, flash shots, and more!"
Comments 0 Published: May 1, 2000 at 04:00
Apr29
Bibble goes V1.0 - Open D1 NEF files
I've had my eye on Bibble for a while, now it's gone version 1 I thought I'd bring it to the attention of any D1 owners out there. Eric Hyman wrote Bibble to explore the 16-bit .NEF RAW image format from the Nikon D1 (and to save money on having to buy Nikon's Capture software), he's progressed it to an amazing level, it'll now browse and import .NEF files straight into Photoshop, it'll also do conversions, magenta fix, batch conversions and extract EXIF exposure information. (It's even claimed to give better colour reproduction than Nikon Capture!)
Comments 0 Published: Apr 29, 2000 at 04:00
Olympus C-3030Z in house! - First Look
The latest digicam in house for our review treatment is the Olympus C-3030Z. It's a production model (NTSC). Having only had the camera for a day it's a little early to draw any major conclusions suffice to say I really like it, feels more solid and complete than the C-2020Z and produces image quality which puts it right up there with the 990.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 29, 2000 at 04:00
Another 990 gallery
Today we've posted another 990 gallery, that brings the number of images (and untouched originals) to 50. This gallery contains some images shot with the addition of the EagleEye OpticZoom 5x lens.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 29, 2000 at 04:00
We tracked Mike Rubin down to a small deserted island somewhere in the Caribbean (testing the next Coolpix no doubt) to bring these answers communicated over an old Morse network.. Instead of asking Mike to dig up the old messages and answer them directly on the newsgroup we've pulled them togther as a whole.. So here they are, answers to the questions you've asked!
Comments 0 Published: Apr 29, 2000 at 04:00
Imaging Resource post Sony DSC-F505V samples
Are you reading this SONY UK?? I requested a test sample as soon as I knew about the camera but according to them there aren't any samples. Well Dave over at Imaging Resource has posted a quick first-look and some sample images from a DSC-F505V.. Congrats.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 29, 2000 at 04:00
Apr27
Phils CCD research and some answers
I'd had these datasheets lying around for some time, brushed the dust of them and took a look at the specifications. So here's the answer (and it's pretty much what most people had concluded) to Sony's F505V 2.6 megapixel resolution. It's all in the effective pixels...
Comments 0 Published: Apr 27, 2000 at 04:00
Apr26
FujiFilm remove 4.3M label from 4700Z
Following similar action in Europe, FujiFilm Japan are now shipping the 4700Z without the 4.3M label on the front of the camera, they've also backed down in their catalogues and sales material clearly stating 2.4 megapixels. Perhaps they'll do the same for the 3.2 megapixel S1 Pro. This is clearly a victory for the consumer. Remember, don't believe the sales hype!
Comments 0 Published: Apr 26, 2000 at 04:00
Sony go 2.6 megapixel (!) with the F505V & F55V
Another piece of news we've heard rumours about has today been made official by Sony. Today they announced the 3.34 megapixel DSC-F505V and DSC-F55V. Essentially upgraded versions of their popular Cybershot digicams these cameras now complement their (extensive) range of digicams. DSC-F505V will be available in Japan in June @ 125,000 YEN (US$1100), DSC-F55V will be available in Japan in July @ 88,000 YEN (US$830)
Comments 0 Published: Apr 26, 2000 at 04:00
Apr25
Every month Impress Group of Japan publish their printed Digital Camera magazine, they also publish a webpage with downloadable sample images associated with various articles in the magazine. This month there are samples from the following cameras: Nikon Coolpix 990, Olympus C-3030Z, Sony DSC-S70, FujiFilm FinePix 4700Z, Toshiba M70, Casio QV-3, Casio QV-3000EX, Epson CP-900Z, Canon S20, Sony DSC-S50, Fuji FinePix 1400Z, Sanyo DSC-SX550, Olympus C-960Z, Olympus C-860L and Panasonic LK-RQ132S. There's also a 3 megapixel vs. 2 megapixel comparison.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 25, 2000 at 04:00
Apr24
Olympus announce $799 3.34 megapixel C-3000Z
Olympus make official something we've know for quite a while. The C-3000Z, it's a cheaper version of the C-3030Z yet still features a 3x optical zoom, 3.34 megapixels of resolution, longlife Lithium batteries, USB and QuickTime Video. Availability is said to be "End of May"
Comments 0 Published: Apr 24, 2000 at 04:00
Minolta and Konica Alliance, shares jump
We've not heard much from Minolta since their EX-1500 diigcam, the camera which offered upgradable CCD's due to its removable lens portion (that never came to anything did it?). Today they announced an alliance with Konica in an attempt for both companies to gain ground on competitors such as Canon and Ricoh in the "digital equipment" sector (read: digital cameras). Watch this space...
Comments 0 Published: Apr 24, 2000 at 04:00
Apr21
Loupe Macro shots with a Canon S10
Wim Pollet, a regular poster on our Canon Talk forum has put together a page exploring the possibilities of macro shots using the Canon S10 (or S20 for that matter) and a 10x Peak Scale Loupe. His results are outstanding and show that you don't always have to work within the limitations of your particular camera. The Loupe he uses is of high quality, it has a 20mm eyepiece and adjustable focus ring.. Cheap at about $60. He's got over 76 sample shots in the Albums section of his site.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 21, 2000 at 04:00
Steve Sanders posts Olympus C-3030Z Review
Steve, happily living in the land of NTSC managed to get his hands on a C-3030Z way before me and has now completed his review. I'm receiving about ten emails a day requesting my own C-3030Z review which will come as soon as Olympus UK supply me with one, apparently there aren't any PAL C-3030Z's around (I don't really care what Video output it has...). Steve says "Bottom Line is that this is an excellent camera. As I said at the beginning, it will be one of the cameras that I'll recommend without hesitation to those seeking the "best" of the Y2K consumer digicams. "
Comments 0 Published: Apr 21, 2000 at 04:00
Apr19
Olympus announce Camedia Master 2
Camedia Master 2 lets you download images directly from the camera over USB or Serial, has better printing support, support for slide shows, wide-screen panoramas, 360 degree panoramas and QuickTime VR and emailing support directly for Microsoft Outlook, Netscape Mail and Eurdora. It'll be shipped with the C-3030Z and C-3000Z, upgrades can be purchased for $19.95.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 19, 2000 at 04:00
Sony invest in Lexar
In a very interesting piece of news Lexar have received $2 million equity investment from Sony, in conjunction with a strategic partnership to apply their high-speed flash memory controller technology to Sony's Memory Stick. Sony wants their Memory Stick to be able to download 64MB of data in 10 seconds (that's 6.4MB/s boys...) As a part of the agreement Lexar has received license to manufacture and market Memory Stick under their own brand. Memory Sticks for the masses? Anyone else notice that the recently announced "Duo" Memory Stick would fit inside the CF form factor?
Comments 0 Published: Apr 19, 2000 at 04:00
Apr18
Ulead Photo Explorer Beta 2
Here's a nice alternative to the supplied digital camera software, Ulead Photo Explorer will thumbnail and sort images, it's got download facilities for digital cameras and a TWAIN interface for scanners. Supports lossless JPEG rotation (without destroying the essential EXIF/CIFF data), batch resizing and file conversion. Sharing and Printing facilities. Best of all in it's Beta form it's a free download.
Comments 0 Published: Apr 18, 2000 at 04:00
Nikon have launched a new toll free number for their US customers, 1-800-NIKON-UX which has been setup for exclusive support for their Digital Customers to answer questions about Nikon Coolpix Digital Cameras, Scanners and D1 professional system and software."By devoting a separate set of resources for digital information, we can ensure that Nikon customers will have a rewarding experience as they learn about using their digital Nikon products."
Comments 0 Published: Apr 18, 2000 at 04:00
Apr17
It's here. We've worked doubly hard this last week to ensure the most detailed and comprehensive review we've ever carried out. The Nikon Coolpix 990 is probably the most eagerly awaited digital camera of 2000, riding on the success and high praise of its now older brother the 950, Nikon had a high standard to upkeep (and lots of little niggles to fix).
Comments 0 Published: Apr 17, 2000 at 04:00
Imaging Resource post Canon S20 Review
Hats off to David over at Imaging Resource for pumping out regular reviews, this time he's completed a review of Canon's S20 he says "...They also gave it an exceptionally sharp lens to match the sensor's resolution (producing the highest resolution we've measured on a digicam to date, as of late March, 2000). We found its color to be very good as well, both hue-accurate and properly saturated. (Neither over-bright nor dull.) While it lacks traditional aperture- and shutter-priority metering modes, much the same effects can be achieved through the "Fast Shutter" and "Slow Shutter" exposure modes. Overall, a great camera and a great extension of Canon's "Elph-like" digicam line. Highly recommended!"
Comments 0 Published: Apr 17, 2000 at 04:00