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Epson PhotoPC 3000Z Review

July 2000 | By Phil Askey

Review based on a Production Model PhotoPC 3000Z

Epson entered the 3 megapixel race with a truly interesting camera. The PhotoPC 3000Z is Epson's first viable attempt to go after the big boys in the digital camera market. Fitted out with a 3x zoom, big diameter, fast F2.0 lens (I have a theory on the origin of this lens) and (probably) Sony's 3.34 megapixel CCD. Solid and chunky the 3000Z certainly looks the part and has a feature set that puts it up amongst the best 3 megapixel digital cameras.

Epson have also implemented their HyPict interpolation algorithm on the Epson PhotoPC 3000Z which means that over and above the standard (CCD native) 2048 x 1536 resolution you can also have a HyPict image of 2544 x 1904 or a HyPict Panorama of 2544 x 952.

The Lens

After receiving the 3000Z I put it on my desk next to a Sony DSC-S70.. That's when it struck me, it's the same lens. No, really, bear with me. They're both 7 - 21 mm (F2.0 - F2.5) lenses, size, extension speed/mechanism and internals appear identical.. Which is kind of confusing because Sony put a Carl Zeiss badge on theirs, yet Epson simply say "Epson Digital Camera Lens". Interesting, yes?

Lens from Epson PhotoPC 3000Z Lens from Sony DSC-S70

From the images above you can clearly see the lenses are identical even down to the aperture diaphragm, which begs the question is the lens in the PhotoPC 3000Z a Carl Zeiss design? We may never get an "official" answer to that but on this evidence it would stand it in good stead by at least having a high quality lens before even crossing the starting line.

If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this review (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

Photographs of the camera were taken with a Nikon Coolpix 990, images which can be viewed at a larger size have a small magnifying glass icon in the bottom right corner of the image, clicking on the image will display a larger (normally 1024 x 768 or smaller if cropped) image in a new window.

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This review is Copyright 2000 Phil Askey and the review in part or in whole may NOT be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author. For information on reproducing any part of this review (or any images) please contact: Phil Askey.

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