Casio has today announced two new digital cameras whose USP (Unique Selling Point) is a YouTube optimized video capture mode. Thankfully this promises to be more than just marketing fluff as the EX-77 and EX-S880 record video using the MPEG-4 H.264 video codec, something we've been asking manufacturers to implement for some time. You can record almost 19 minutes of 640x480 video (with audio) at 30 fps on a 1 GB SD card, and of course both cameras support SDHC cards so that's an hour and 10 minutes of high quality video on a 4 GB card. Moving back to still capture capabilities for a second, both cameras have a three times optical zoom lens, the EX-S880 has an eight megapixel sensor, the EX-S77 a seven megapixel sensor.

Press Release:

Casio Introduces Two Stylish New EXILIM® Digital Cameras with YouTube™ Capture™ Mode

Agreement with Popular Video Sharing Site, YouTube™ Connects Casio with Video Enthusiasts

DOVER, NJ, JULY 10, 2007 – Casio, Inc. and its parent company, Casio Computer Co., Ltd., announced today the release of two new digital cameras with the cutting-edge EXILIM Engine 2.0 image processing module. In conjunction with the release of these cameras, Casio, Inc. announced today their agreement with YouTube to include a unique YouTube Capture mode and bundle software to provide ideal settings for recording, storing and uploading video on the company’s newest EXILIM digital cameras – EX-S880 and EX-Z77.  This agreement represents an effort by Casio, Inc. to directly engage the YouTube community by simplifying the process of creating and sharing videos.

“The increased popularity of video sharing Web sites such as YouTube offers a great opportunity for innovation,” said John Homlish, Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Casio, Inc. “We recognized that there was a demand for an easier way to upload high-quality video and are thrilled to be the first digital camera company to be able to offer a solution for consumers.”

Casio’s YouTube Capture mode records in next-generation MPEG-4 H.264 high quality video format; this provides an ideal compression ratio that allows users to record longer without having to sacrifice the quality of their movies.  This mode also provides sharp resolution (640 x 480) and a frame rate of up to 30 frames per second. Casio is providing consumers with a groundbreaking tool to get videos recorded and uploaded directly to YouTube in as few as two steps! Casio has also included an exclusive software application that makes it seamless to upload movies to YouTube.  This technology will also allow users to upload multiple videos at once, making it easier than ever before to share original content online.

“We are constantly looking for ways to make it simpler for our community to create and share videos,” said Hunter Walk, YouTube product management.  “The YouTube Capture mode featured on these Casio EXILIM cameras is remarkably innovative and easy to use, and will further expand and diversify the incredible range of originally-created content for which YouTube is known.”

The stylish 8.1 megapixel EXILIM Card EX-S880 is the latest addition to the popular EXILIM Card series, known for its sophisticated design in a thin card size. The sophisticated 7.2 megapixel EXILIM Zoom EX-Z77 joins Casio’s successful EXILIM Zoom series, whose excellent balance of superior functionality and stylish, compact look characterize the EXILIM brand. Both models add enhanced movie functionality and are the first within the line to feature YouTube Capture mode.

The new cameras also feature a blur reduction function that uses motion analysis technology, an auto-tracking AF system, and face detection technology. The combination of face detection technology and the auto-tracking AF system ensures that, once the focus locks on to a person’s face, it will stay sharp and maintain the right exposure, even if the person moves. Casio has made it much easier to capture beautiful portraits.

Exclusive to the Casio EXILIM line of digital cameras in the U.S., and featured in the EX-S880 and the EX-Z77 is the eBay® Best Shot Mode.  eBay Best Shot takes photos at a size that is image optimized for display on eBay, allowing picture takers to more quickly and easily create photos for selling items on eBay.  For ease of use, eBay photos are stored in a special eBay directory. 

The EX-S880 is available in red and black with an MSRP of $299.99.  The EX-Z77 is available in black, blue, pink and silver with an MSRP of $229.99.  Both cameras will be available at retail in August.

Casio will have the marketing exclusivity for the YouTube feature during the Holiday ’07 season.  All cameras that feature YouTube Capture mode will feature a custom YouTube sticker logo, licensed by YouTube.  YouTube Capture mode will be included in Casio’s 2007 Holiday line-up of EXILIM digital cameras.  The cameras with YouTube Capture mode and the upload functionality software will be available in a bundle package to be sold during the holiday season, allowing users to receive all the hardware and software necessary for upload for one price.

Main Features of EXILIM Card EX-S880 & EXILIM Zoom EX-Z77 
  • High-quality movies using the H.264 standard
    • YouTube Capture Mode allows users to shoot movies at the optimum size, quality and other settings for uploading to YouTube™.
    • Comes with unique “YouTube Uploader for CASIO” software that enables users to upload movies to YouTube™ in three easy steps.
  • The combination of face detection*1 technology and the auto-tracking AF system using motion analysis technology maintains both sharp focus and correct exposure for a human face.
  • Blur reduction technologies driven by the EXILIM Engine 2.0 image processing module
    • Based on motion analysis technology, sets the most appropriate ISO sensitivity and shutter speed
    • Anti Shake DSP reduces blur due to shaky hands and subject movement, using high shutter speeds and high sensitivity settings
    • Movie mode with electronic image stabilization function.

Other Features of the EXILIM Card EX-S880

  • 8.1 million effective pixels, 3X optical zoom
  • Wide viewing angle, 2.8-inch Bright wide screen LCD display (maximum brightness of 1000 cd/m2 at the center of the screen)
  • Maximum 4 shot/second*2 high-speed continuous shutter (only at 2.0 megapixel image size)
  • Data Storage function enables users to carry data transferred to the camera from a computer
  • Choice of two body colors: black and red

Other Features of the EXILIM Zoom EX-Z77

  • 7.2 million effective pixels, 3X optical zoom
  • 2.6-inch widescreen LCD display
  • Easy Mode, which displays simple shooting menus on the right side of the monitor.
  • Maximum 5 shot/second*2 high-speed continuous shutter (only at 2.0 megapixel image size)
  • Choice of four body colors: silver, black, blue and pink

*1. The face detection feature includes a face detection technology provided by OKI’s face image processing engine, FSE (Face Sensing Engine). *2. Number of shots can vary depending on the memory card used.