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Photokina Report Part 4
Oh boy, are you going to like this... We managed to get an EXCLUSIVE (you won't find pictures like this anywhere else) hands-on with the new Pentax Digital SLR. What struck me about this camera was how far advanced it was. Despite being displayed only in a glass case all the design features of the camera appeared operational, finish quality was just like a final camera (not like some prototypes I've seen), although there were no batteries in the camera I had so I couldn't do a powered-on test. The camera is smaller, thinner and lighter than the D1 or EOS-D30 (with the optional portrait grip) with very distinctive styling I'm sure it'll appeal to many prospective digital SLR purchasers.
Pentax Digital SLR Specifications (so far):
|Body||Pentax design magnesium alloy case|
|Type||SLR (body only)|
|Imager||Philips 6 megapixel CCD
35mm full frame
12-bit progressive scan
12 µm pixel pitch
|Image resolution||3072 x 2048|
|Image types||JPEG, TIFF, RAW|
|Shutter speed||Up to 1/6000 sec|
|Metering||TTL six-segment metering|
|Lens mount||Pentax KAF2 mount (645N & 67II lenses can be used)|
|Viewfinder||TTL optical (true TTL)|
|LCD||2 inch TFT|
|Flash||Built-in retractable flash unit (TTL)|
Compact Flash Type II
PCMCIA Type II
|Sale price||Expected ~$7,000|
They obviously also had the EI-200 and EI-2000 on show, both being the
combined creation of themselves (lens & body design) and HP (electronics).
The Pentax Digital SLR looks very interesting indeed.. However, if the current rumoured price is correct I'd say it's a little overpriced for the market, it really needs to come in at the $3500 - $4500 price range.
Site links: Pentax Digital SLR sneak preview
Ricoh were of course making a big noise about their RDC-i700 multi-function digital camera.. demonstrating email and web browsing including taking a sample image and emailing it to a test PC on the other side of the stand. This is certainly interesting technology, but it begs the question "what gives?", for a product like this becomes a Jack of all trades and a master of none.
|Ricoh Stand||Ricoh RDC-i700 (case)|
|Ricoh RDC-i700 in use|
SanDisk had a presence displaying their current range of storage including a 300 MB CF Type II flash card and varous SD Multimedia cards. They were also showing (in use) their new collaboration with Photo-Me to provide high street printing stations which would allow digital camera users to just insert their memory card and run off prints. Pricing was $3 for the first 4x6 print and $0.30 for each subsequent print.
|SanDisk Photo-Me station||SanDisk 64 MB "SD" Multimediacard and mock-up digital camera|
|SanDisk 300 MB CF Type II card|
Samsung were displaying their new digital cameras the Digimax 210SE (2.1 megapixels, 3x optical zoom) and the Digimax 35 multi-function camera which can play MP3, act as a web camera and take stills (640 x 480).
|Samsung Digimax 210SE||Samsung Digimax 35 MP3 + Still + Webcam|
Sony's stand was dominated by the DSC-P1, their advertising campaign based on the comparison of the size of the P1 to a fictional matchstick tripod. There was certainly a lot of interested in the P1 (remember, we reviewed the P1 just a week ago). Also on display and getting a lot of interest was the DSC-F505V which is still a relatively new product here in Europe. They were also showing their new DP-SV55 dye sub printer and the MemoryStick Picture Frame. Considering Sony's lack of a photographic background their stand was considerably well populated.
|Sony making a BIG impression for the little P1||Sony DSC-F505V in hand...|
|"Then, you press this button"||Sony DP-SV55 dye sub printer|
|Sony MemoryStick Picture Frame|
Site links: Sony Digital Cameras (specs)
(Note: this is page four of a four page report)