News archive for October 2000
Canon are currently showing this small digital camera / printer combination device at the Canon Expo 2000 which is currently open in Paris. The little camera takes proprietary Ink/Paper Packs and produces credit-card sized prints. Thanks to Steves-Digicams for putting us on the trail of this news article.
Casio today announced their first CMOS digital still camera, the budget LV-10 only features VGA resolution (640 x 480) CMOS sensor and built-in 4 MB of Flash storage which allows you to take up to 60 images. Obviously this isn't a camera for anyone who's serious about digital photography but it's noteworthy because it's only the third digital still camera we've mentioned here which uses a CMOS sensor. The LV-10 can also operate as a web camera.
Thanks to David M. Stone from Photographic Solutions for letting us know that Fujifilm have officially approved the use of their Sensor Swab and Eclipse cleaning fluid for cleaning the CCD Sensor in the Fujifilm S1 Pro. Additional to this they've even published a page describing how to clean the CCD on the S1 Pro.
Today Simple Technology introduced a 512 MB CompactFlash Type II Flash Memory card, featuring up to 3MB/s write speeds and the robustness of flash memory they certainly look like an attractive proposition. Until you consider the price, entering the market at a cool $1,599 that prices the Simple Technology 512 MB CF Type II card at $3.12/MB, compare this to IBM's 1 GB CF Type II Microdrive at $0.48/MB. Hmmm.. think I'll stick to the Microdrive.
According to an article in EETimes the race is on to merge image processing and CMOS sensor into one device, "Some companies are going for an extremely high-quality, high-price CMOS sensor market, while others are going for lower-priced products. Vendors need to differentiate, but it's getting more difficult for them to define their own niche," In-Stat's O'Rourke said.
Steve over at Steves Digicams has just posted his review of Canon's EOS-D30. Steve had this to say "I really don't like concluding a review of a camera this feature-rich after having only used it for just a week. If it gives you an idea of how much I like the D30, I will probably be buying one for myself shortly." Funny, so have I.
Following Michael Reichmann's recent comparison of JPEG and RAW I decided that this issue needed properly exploring in our EOS-D30 review. So, I've now evaluated JPEG vs. RAW for the EOS-D30 at all ISO sensitivities. My findings? That up to ISO 400 there's little to choose between the two (other than the added flexibility of RAW), however at ISO 800 and 1600 the noise appears to cause some JPEG hue errors and thus it's better to shoot RAW at these high sensitivities.
Good news from our official affiliate State Street Direct, today they shipped their first D30's along with another 50 G1's (in addition to the 50 they shipped yesterday) and ten Olympus E-10's, they're one of the first retailers to be shipping D30's in the US and one of the first to have quantities of G1's and E10's. Still undecided who to order from? Order from State Street, get the product first, quality service and help to support this site with your purchase!
Both Nikon and Canon have recently posted new drivers for their digital cameras. First of all Nikon have posted Nikon View 3.1.1 which now supports Windows ME / 2000 / 95 / 98 / NT4.0 and Mac for the Coolpix 900 / 900s / 700 / 800 / 880 / 950 and 990. Canon Japan have posted Japanese Language drivers v3.4.0 for their entire range of digital cameras (Note: this is the same version shipped with the G1 and EOS-D30), English v3.4.0 drivers available.
According to an IDC report the increasing use of digital cameras, MP3 players, portable digital assistants and the Internet continue to fuel the Flash Memory Card Market. "IDC says CompactFlash (CF) and SmartMedia (SM) will continue to dominate the digital camera market, while other smaller form factors will benefit most from the explosion of mobile applications."
This is advanced notice that introduction of another database server tomorrow will require us to "freeze" the forums for a short time while it synchs with the active database, during this time the forums area of the site will be inaccessible, instead a warning message will be displayed. We have chosen to do this work tomorrow (26th October) AM UK time (early AM US time). All being well the whole process shouldn't take more than thirty minutes. Thanks for your patience and understanding in this matter.
Or to be more precise a Canon EOS-D30 vs. a Canon EOS 1V with Fuji Provia 100F film using the same (excellent) Canon 100-400mm f/4.5L lens. This test prepared by Michael Reichmann compares the image quality of scanned film (Imacon FlexTight Photo @ 3200 DPI) and a D30 RAW image. The results will surprise, please and no doubt spark a huge debate on our forums.
Agfa today released a recall notice on the optional ePhoto AC Adapter for the Agfa ePhoto CL30. "These ePhoto AC-adapters may cause the batteries to overheat, leak acid and possibly explode. Your AGFA ePhoto CL30 digital camera is NOT being recalled, and may continue to be used without concern as long as you do not use the recalled ePhoto AC-adapter WHILE batteries are installed in the camera."
The guys over at Imaging-Resource have just posted a first look at a pre-production prototype Olympus E-10 Digital SLR. They've gone into quite a bit of detail (something I didn't with my pre-production unit as I didn't feel it was ready for full testing). "Overall, we were very impressed with the performance of our prototype model of the Olympus E-10 SLR. Color balance was surprisingly good for a model this early in its development cycle, and the camera's white balance system does a good job with most light sources."
Jeff Keller at DC Resource has just posted his Canon G1 review, he said "...I will say that the PowerShot G1 takes care of a lot of issues that I had with the Coolpix 990, such as sound with movies, CompactFlash Type II support, and a hot shoe. Plus it adds the very handy swiveling LCD! This one definitely be one of the finalists if I was camera shopping, and its very much worth your time to consider it!"
As Canon EOS-D30's gently trickle out into the retail channels (it appears Canada have been the luckiest country so far) I took a break from the hustle of the site for a day and snapped a few more shots with the D30, some autumnal scenes along with a couple of higher ISO shots (as requested). This brings the total number of samples available (with originals) to 82.
Thanks to Olympus Japan we can now we can bring you the full details and specifications of Olympus's new Digital SLR the E-10. An interesting combination of a big 4 megapixel CCD, high quality glass, traditional ergonomics (zoom ring and manual focus ring) a solid high quality case and flip-out display and enough manual features to keep you quiet at least until Olympus annonce the E-20 ;)
Yesterday, along with the E-10 mention was made of the E-100RS a very interesting new digital camera from Olympus with the same 10 x optical stablised zoom lens announced in the C-2100UZ, however the E-100RS is built with a different tactic in mind, it's main aim is speed. It has a 1/2" 1.5 megapixel CCD and is capable of capturing bursts of full size images at 15 frames per second (that's faster than we've ever seen in a digital camera.. and considerably faster than all but the most expensive 35mm SLR's). Looking at the body it appears to be based around the C-3030Z with a 0.55" LCD viewfinder.
Nikon today announced two new instructional videotapes "The Nikon Guide to Coolpix Digital Photography" and "The Nikon Guide to Film Scanning". Of interest to readers of this site will probably be the Guide to Coolpix Digital Photography, "This video covers everything from the fundamentals of digital photography to basic image management, manipulation and printing techniques.". $29.95 a piece.
Imaging-Resource just posted a full review of a pre-production 4900Z and Steves-Digicams has posted a review of what appears to be a production model. Here's what each had to say, Dave E: "Overall, a very interesting camera for the true "enthusiast", yet one that can also be used in a fully automatic mode for the technology-challenged.", Steve: "I see the FinePix 4900 Zoom as a very worthy competitor to other cameras in its price and resolution class, it's loaded with features and performance and takes great pictures. Which camera you buy is a matter of ergonomics and personal taste. "
We've just posted our Fujifilm FinePix 4900Z review (production camera), this interesting camera with sci-fi inspired looks, smaller and lighter than you expect, a big 6x optical zoom and in addition all the features a "prosumer" would require, well designed, great ergonimics and fast operation.. But what about image quality?
Jeff over at DC Resource as posted a review of Sony's tiny DSC-P1, here's what he had to say "it's aimed squarely at people who were looking at Canon's PowerShot line. In terms of size, the PowerShot Digital ELPH is the winner. For storage capacity, I'd give the nod to the PowerShot S10/S20. For overall features, the DSC-P1 is the winner -- there's a few things that I don't like, but I really enjoyed using it, and would recommend it to anyone who wants a compact point-and-shoot camera."
In what we hope will become a regular feature of (some of) our reviews Neil Turner (pro photographer) has taken a brief look at Canon's G1 from a different point of view and offered his "second opinion" on this little prosumer digital camera. "Ahead were four days to shoot as much as I could with it and write a personal review. I shoot every day with Kodak DCS520s, and I was treating the G1 as a serious "third camera". I'd had a quick tour of the G1s features and I was off."
Slightly pre-empting a second look at the G1 by our new contributing editor Neil Turner, one of the images he shot during his short loan of the G1 will be in print in tomorrows "The Times Higher Education Supplement" (UK). Neil, a pro photographer for 13 years, currently shoots Kodak DCS 520's for THES. We've invited him to provide a pro photographers "second opinion" in several of our reviews, the first of which, his look at the G1 will be published tomorrow. We certainly weren't expecting to see a G1 photograph in print, but it just goes to show that it's often not the camera but the photographer.
Fujifilm today announced their FinePix Platform HA-770. This device (similar to Iomega's Fotoshow) allows for the transfer of images from SmartMedia or PC Card (with PC Card adpaters; CompactFlash and MemoryStick) onto Zip 100 or 250 MB disks. The device can be connected to a TV for slideshow playback / delete / protection (not as many editting options as the Fotoshow) and can also be used as an external drive to a computer (via USB). The HA-770 can also be directly connected to Fujifilm's NX-700/500/TX-70 printers for direct prints. On sale in Japan on November 5th at 49,800 YEN ($460).
Kodak have launched a new kit aimed at dentists. The kit contains a Kodak DC290 Zoom, Close-up Lens Kit, Ring Flash, PM100 printer, Paper and NiMH batteries & charger. "Digital photography has dentists excited, and for good reason," said Jack Retzlaff, digital product line manager, Kodak's dental business. "Today's cameras and inkjet printers promise a fast and easy way for dentists to produce professional patient images."
Another DPReview.Com first! We're proud to bring you the first ever review of a full production Canon EOS-D30 Digital SLR. Probably one of the most important reviews I've ever written, and further more it's of one of the (if not the) most important digital camera this year. Certainly one of the most anticipated digital cameras for a long time. So just how good is it? Come in and take a look...
UPDATED: Six new night shots (1- 15 sec exposures) added to galleries.
Both Imaging-Resource and Digital-Eye have posted Kodak DC3800 reviews, Dave E said "About the only thing we really felt was missing was an exposure-compensation adjustment. While many prospective users of the DC3800 could probably care less about exposure compensation, we feel it's a near-necessity on a digicam", and David K, "Overall, the DC3800 at $499 and with everything you need to easily get into digital photography, is a very practical choice which we certainly can highly recommend."
DPReview and State Street Direct (our approved affiliate) are proud to bring you yet another 64MB for $99.99 offer, to add to the offer of 64MB of SmartMedia for $99.99 which is running until Sunday we have a very limited time offer (until tomorrow!) of a Viking 64MB CompactFlash card for just $99.99 (no rebate required), this offer is open only to customers clicking through from this site.
So now you can buy 64MB of either SmartMedia or CompactFlash for just $99.99.
No really, I've not been ignoring the other sites, but I'm in the middle of several major reviews and site upgrades and have had little time to gather all of the weeks reviews / first-looks together. Anyhow, here they are. From Steve Sanders: two first looks, a review and "Ask Fujifilm". From Imaging-Resource: two reviews and "Ask Fujifilm. From DC Resource: Nikon Coolpix 880 review. Finally Mike Chaney's S1 vs. D1 article.
Thanks to Juergen Specht who attended Ceatec 2000 in Tokyo and caught a glimpse of some interesting digital camera technology, some of it real, some prototype / mock-up. Sony had no less than three prototype ultra compact digital cameras on display, one of which we've reported on before, the other two are new even to us. Also at the same show a 448MB CF card from Hitachi.
UPDATED: For owners of digital cameras that use SmartMedia our approved affiliate State Streeet Direct is offering DPreview customers the ability to purchase a two-pack of Viking 32MB Smartmedia Memory cards (64MB Total) for only $99.99 (No Rebate required). This is a limited time offer and will end on Sunday evening. Regular price for two 32MB Smartmedia memory cards is $170.00.
Offer now clarified! Open to anyone (you don't have to buy a camera to be eligible), offer extended until Sunday.
Rob Galbraith has had a look at the Hoodcap from Hoodman, a clear clip-on device which fits over the LCD of the D1 (just like the supplied protective cover), the difference with the Hoodcap is that it's transparent, this means that the LCD is protected and can still be viewed without removing it. "Since there is no protective cap for the Hoodcap, expect that its clear panel will accumulate scratches over time. At US$20 each, it may make sense for some to purchase two Hoodcaps per camera, keeping the spare in reserve until scratches overwhelm the primary one."
For owners of digital cameras that use SmartMedia our approved affiliate State Streeet Direct is offering DPreview customers the ability to purchase a two-pack of Viking 32MB Smartmedia Memory cards (64MB Total) for only $99.99 (No Rebate required). This is a limited time offer and will end on Friday evening. Regular price for two 32MB Smartmedia memory cards is $170.00.
Sounds too good to be true, but Kingston Technology (one of our sponsors) have a special $25 mail-in rebate on their 64MB CompactFlash cards, buy from one of their participating "e-tailers" (Buy.com, Egghead.com and 4sure.com) from now until December 31st 2000 and you'll get a $25 rebate off the price of a 64MB Kingston CF card!
After the publication of an alternative way of performing a firmware update for the Coolpix 950/990 digital cameras, Nikon have issued an official "comment" on the Nikon-Euro website, to summarise "Cameras that have failed as a result of an attempted update by the direct method may be subject to chargeable service in the event of a consequential failure or malfunction."
We saw some sneak images of this camera at Photokina, today, Sanyo make it official. The IDC-1000Z uses 730MB iD discs (Magneto Optical), much along the same lines as Sony's CD1000 but with nearly 5 times the storage on each disc. The IDC-1000Z is a 1.5 megapixel digicam with a 3 times optical zoom lens and USB/IEEE1394 connectivity.
Just had this interesting email from Arthur Bleich of dpcorner.com. "The first-ever digital photography workshop at sea will be held December 3-10, 2000 aboard Carnival Cruise Lines' Superliner Victory on a cruise through the Eastern Caribbean which will be followed day-by-day by millions worldwide on the web."
Another web exclusive! It never rains, it pours... Along with the E-10 Olympus loaned us a prototype E-100RS, an interesting camera to say the least, it's only fitted out with a 1.5 megapixel CCD, but has that huge 10 x stablised optical zoom first seen on the C-2100UZ along with the ability to shoot at some 15 frames per second (and even pre-capture frames). Read on...
Just posted! Our full, in-depth Canon PowerShot G1 review. Probably one of the most anticipated cameras for the prosumer market since Nikon announced the Coolpix 990. And that's it's competition, fair and square. In the review we've covered everything from operation to features and functionality, RAW format, image quality and a straight head-to-head with the 990. So who wins?