Konica Minolta today announced the eight times zoom three megapixel DiMAGE Z10, styled in a similar fashion to the DiMAGE Z1/Z2 the Z10 has slightly less zoom, a fixed (not pop-up) flash unit and is aimed at a lower price point. According to Konica Minolta the DiMAGE Z10 also has a 'fastest in class startup time of 0.5 seconds'. The Z10 has a combined passive and video AF system, stores images on SD/MMC card and is powered by four AA batteries. The only thing Konica Minolta has not yet revealed about this camera is its price, although we expect it to be well below the DiMAGE Z2's current $450 street price.

Press Release:

KONICA MINOLTA INTRODUCES THE 3.2 MEGAPIXEL DiMAGE Z10 DIGITAL CAMERA

Affordable new camera features fastest-in-class startup, 8x Optical "Mega Zoom,"
fast and reliable autofocusing, and energy efficient design

Mahwah, NJ (July 7, 2004) - Konica Minolta introduces an affordable new addition to the Z-series of digital cameras - the DiMAGE Z10. Featuring a fastest-in-class*1 startup time of 0.5 seconds, built-in 8x optical zoom lens, fast and reliable autofocusing with Predictive Focus Control, and an energy efficient design*2 that gives photographers up to 500 frames with the included AA alkaline batteries, the new DiMAGE Z10 is a convenient, fun and easy to use digital camera.

"The affordable new DiMAGE Z10 has been designed to bring high-quality digital photography into the daily lives of novice and advanced amateur photographers," said Jon Sienkiewicz, vice president of marketing, Konica Minolta's Camera Division. "Photographers carrying the DiMAGE Z10 with them will have a reliable digital camera to capture those everyday photographic moments exactly as they see them occur."

The Konica Minolta DiMAGE Z10's built-in 8x optical Mega Zoom lens and 4x digital zoom combine for a total 32x zoom, allowing photographers to capture everything from sporting events to panoramic scenery. The camera's optical lens system consists of 11 elements in nine groups and includes two aspheric lens elements, for sharp, high-quality images. The DiMAGE Z10 combines a 3.2-megapixel primary-color CCD with Konica Minolta's proprietary CxProcess™ II image processing technology for pictures that appear exactly the way they are seen.

The DiMAGE Z10's Rapid Autofocus (AF) combines a passive AF sensor with the video AF system, giving a fast focusing time of approximately 0.3 second in both wide-angle and telephoto positions. The Rapid AF also has Predictive Focus Control that predicts where a moving subject is heading and focuses accordingly. To round out the list of quick-response features, the DiMAGE Z10 has the fastest startup in its class*1 (0.5 seconds), a minimum shutter-release time lag, and continuous shooting.

Not only is the DiMAGE Z10 a sprinter with its fast startup, it's also a marathon champ with power efficiency that allows photographers to take up to approximately 500 frames with the four included AA alkaline batteries. This is more shots than any other digital camera with built-in flash running on AA alkaline batteries*2.

In addition, the DiMAGE Z10 has a Macro mode that allows photographers to get as close as 0.4 inches from their subject. This allows photographers to capture the smallest objects- such as flowers, insects, or jewelry-with the greatest detail.

The DiMAGE Z10 sports a new, high-tech design. Despite its large 8x optical zoom capability, it weighs just approximately 10.6 ounces. The camera's ergonomic design provides users with a comfortable grip while its intuitive control button layout allows even amateur photographers to start enjoying digital photography in no time at all.

*1 Approximately 0.5 second, from when main switch is turned on until LCD monitor comes on. As of May 20, 2004, for digital cameras with 8x or greater zoom.
*2 Up to approximately 500 frames with the four included AA alkaline batteries. Based on Konica Minolta's standard test method and compliant with the CIPA standard, with included AA alkaline batteries and included SD Memory Card.
As of May 20, 2004, for digital cameras with built-in flash running on AA alkaline batteries.
*3 PictBridge is an industry standard established by the Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA).

Konica Minolta backgrounder:

New Konica Minolta Z-Series Digital Camera: The DiMAGE Z10

Konica Minolta Photo Imaging U.S.A., Inc.'s new compact and easy-to-use DiMAGE Z10 3.2 megapixel digital camera is an affordable yet feature-rich camera, perfect for novice as well as advanced amateur photographers.

Product Highlights

  • Large 8x optical Mega Zoom lens perfect for landscape photography as well as extreme close-ups. Combining the optical zoom with the seamless 4x digital zoom provides a total 32x zoom
  • High performance built-in lens and 3.2-megapixel CCD with Konica Minolta's CxProcess™ II high-quality image processing technology
  • Fastest startup in its class*1-the DiMAGE Z10 is ready to shoot in approximately 0.5 seconds.
  • Rapid AF with Predictive Focus Control for ultra-high-speed focusing to capture even the most fleeting photo opportunities
  • Four AA alkaline batteries power the DiMAGE Z10 for up to 500 frames
  • Macro mode for close-ups as near as 0.4 inches from the subject

Features

Incredible 32x Total Zoom Lens Range
The new DiMAGE Z10 features a built-in 8x optical zoom lens capable of focal lengths from 36-290mm (35mm equivalent) while providing focal lengths up to 1160mm (35mm equivalent) when combined with the 4x seamless digital zoom. With the 8x optical zoom lens and the 4x digital zoom combining for a 32x total zoom, the DiMAGE Z10 is perfect for taking pictures of distant subjects or far-away scenic shots.

The DiMAGE Z10 incorporates a high performance 8x optical lens consisting of 11 elements in nine groups that includes two aspheric lens elements. With two aspheric lens elements, the DiMAGE Z10 corrects various kinds of optical aberrations in the zoom range and renders beautiful, homogenous, distortion-free images from the center to the edges.

3.2-Megapixel CCD for Beautiful Prints
The 3.2-megapixel, 1/2.5-inch CCD produces plenty of detail for creating high-quality enlargements-as large as 10 x 13 inches at 150 dpi print resolution. In addition, the CCD's primary color filter offers high color fidelity.

Fastest Startup in Its Class*1
The DiMAGE Z10 boasts an amazingly fast startup time. Just switch the camera on and it's ready to start taking pictures in approximately 0.5 seconds*1.

Rapid Autofocus (AF) with Predictive Focus Control
Thanks to a hybrid rapid AF combining a passive AF sensor with the video AF system, focusing takes just 0.3 seconds. The DiMAGE Z10 includes Predictive Focus Control, which allows photographers to capture sharper images of moving subjects-like a child running through the back yard.

Progressive Capture
The DiMAGE Z10 allows photographers to take high-speed consecutive shots at approximately 1.5 frames per second and the DiMAGE Z10 captures consecutive images onto the camera's 16MB internal memory. Release the shutter button and the last six shots are recorded onto the memory card. This function is handy for shooting sporting events or for recording, analyzing and improving form in personal sports training situations such as a golf swing.

Up to 500 Frames on Four AA Alkaline Batteries
The DiMAGE Z10's power-saving design allows photographers to take up to 500 frames on a set of four AA alkaline batteries. This is more shots than any other digital camera with built-in flash running on AA alkaline batteries*2.

Superbly Detailed Images with CxProcess™ II
Konica Minolta's CxProcess™ II image processing technology incorporates characteristics like smooth gradations, natural skin tones, and brilliantly clear colors for images that are more natural and lifelike.

Noise Reduction
Noise Reduction improves night photography by automatically preventing the blemishes and graininess associated with slow-shutter speeds.

PASM Exposure Control and Metering Modes
The DiMAGE Z10 offers incredible control over exposure. The camera features four modes: Program, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, and Manual. Manual exposure enables 30-second time exposures. The DiMAGE Z10 has three metering modes: Multi-segment, center-weighted, and spot. Multi-segment metering uses 256 segments to determine exposure.

Automatic Digital Subject Program Selection
Automatic Digital Subject Program Selection automatically chooses the best recording mode for each image. Photographers can also manually select from Portrait, Sports Action, Landscape, and Sunset modes. The DiMAGE Z10 can also be set to Night portrait mode in the menu settings.

Get as Close as 0.4 inches with Macro
Shoot amazing close-up photographs using the camera's Macro mode. This mode allows photographer's to get as close as 0.4 inches to their subject.

Switch Finder
The DiMAGE Z10's Switch Finder function allows photographers to view the LCD monitor images through the viewfinder (Viewfinder display) or on the LCD monitor itself (Monitor display). There is no color, contrast, or resolution difference between the images viewed on the viewfinder and on the LCD monitor because both are the same image. The viewfinder was designed with a large apparent angle of view so the image is large and clear.

Key Customize
For added flexibility and convenience, the camera's flash button can be customized to handle different settings. This means that instead of going through the menus on the camera's LCD panel, photographers can use the flash button to change settings like the drive mode, white balance, focus mode, color mode, or sensitivity.

PictBridge*3-Compliant
Forget all about complicated connections with a PC. Users can get prints directly from the camera by connecting the DiMAGE Z10 to a PictBridge*3-compliant printer. Users just check which images they want to print on the DiMAGE Z10's LCD monitor and then print out their favorites.

VGA Movie Recording
The DiMAGE Z10 can record movies without sound. It records 15-frames-per-second VGA-size (640x480) movies, which are much easier to view during playback than conventional QVGA-size (320x240) movies. It also records 320x240 movies at either 30 frames per second or 15 frames per second. The XR (Extended Recording) Movie mode lets users record longer movie clips onto the SD memory card until the memory card is full. Night Movie uses high camera sensitivity to record under extreme low-light conditions. And Movie Frame Capture lets users select their favorite scenes from a movie and saves them as still images.

New Design
The DiMAGE Z10's design is advanced yet familiar and easy-to-use. Despite its large 8x zoom range, it weighs just 10.6 ounces. It's also easy to carry and operate even for amateur photographers. The camera's ergonomic form makes it easy to hold and keep steady for those zoom shots.

Optional Wide Converter Wide-Angle Converter ZCW-200
The optional Wide Converter Kit allows photographers to fit more of a scene into each shot. The lens features a 26mm wide angle that is ideal for capturing indoor or outdoor architecture and panoramic landscape shots.

*1 Approximately 0.5 second, from when main switch is turned on until LCD monitor comes on. As of May 20, 2004, for digital cameras with 8x or greater zoom.
*2 Up to approximately 500 frames with the four included AA alkaline batteries. Based on Konica Minolta's standard test method and compliant with the CIPA standard, with included AA alkaline batteries and included SD Memory Card.
As of May 20, 2004, for digital cameras with built-in flash running on AA alkaline batteries.
*3 PictBridge is an industry standard established by the Camera & Imaging Products Association (CIPA).