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August 1999 news and reviews

August 31
HP announce eight new printers, eight new scanners and two digital cameras.
August 30
Epson Introduces Its Most Powerful, Versatile and Advanced Digital Camera -- the PhotoPC 850Z
August 27
Printroom.Com: Turning images into real photographs
Just received an email about this very interesting new service on the net which allows you to turn your digital photos into real prints, here's the press release:
Canon announce the S10
So, my prototype was a product after all :) About three weeks ago we published a picture and specifications of a product named the S10, today Canon have officially announced it and it matches our specifications and design.
Sony DSC-F505 First Impressions
Today I was lucky enough to take delivery of a brand new Sony DSC-F505 which is on loan for review. This camera has created quite a stir these last couple of weeks with a clever marketing campaign executed by Sony and a huge interest shown in the camera.
August 26
Welcome, if you're seeing this message then you're on our new server which has been put in place to cope with the increasing numbers of visitors coming to the site.
Welcome, if you're seeing this message then you're on our new server which has been put in place to cope with the increasing numbers of visitors coming to the site.
Fuji publish picture of MX-1700 zoom mechanism
On the back of their announcement of the MX-1700 Zoom, Fuji have also published a press release and photograph of the groundbreaking 3x zoom mechanism used in the new MX-1700.
Fuji announce MX-1700, 1.5 megapixel, 3x zoom
Fuji have announced the MX 1700 Zoom. Designed similarly to the MX2700 (and older MX700) it's a 1.5 megapixel (1280 x 1024), where it breaks away from its older syblings is that it has a 3X optical zoom (38mm - 114mm) making it the smallest and lightest 1.5 megapixel zoom digital camera yet.
Olympus C2500L 2.5 Megapixel Digital SLR
Olympus officially announce the C2500L Digital SLR. This 2.5 megapixel 3X zoom true-SLR digital camera has some unique features, the most interesting of which being it's dual media port, the camera can take both CompactFlash and SmartMedia.
Olympus to release D450Z upgraded D400Z
An anonymous contact has let me know that Olympus will be releasing a new camera named the D450Z, it will apparently be the same form factor and resolution as the ever popular D400Z (AKA. C900Z) but will feature much faster operation and new burst mode operable in any resolution. This info should become more apparent towards the end of August, suggested retail price will be around the $500 mark.
August 25
Congratulations to the following people, who won an Olympus C-2000Z in the contest that we participated in along with Imaging Resource and DC Resource:
August 24
In an attempt to improve the quality of the information available on our forums we've decided to create brand specific forums for the top five Digital Camera brands
Dimage EX Zoom 1500 Places First in Digital Camera Shoot-Out and Dimage EX Wide 1500 Wins Most Innovative Product
In Japan, not much changes in the digital camera sales charts, the Nikon Coolpix 950 in short supply leaves it stuck down in 4th place, the Coolpix 700 starts to climb the chart.
Olympus Announce 32MB SmartMedia
Olympus America Inc., Digital & Imaging Systems Group, the world leader in film and filmless photography, today announced 32MB SmartMedia cards under the Olympus brand. Also announced was a compatibility program bringing 32MB card compatibility to legacy filmless digital cameras and the P-330 Instant Photo Printer.
Flash memory shipments to exceed $3 billion
Flash Memory Surges and 1999 Shipments Expected to Exceed $3 Billion, According to Cahners In-Stat Group. For the first time in three years, flash memory market prices are increasing and Cahners In-Stat Group forecasts dollar growth of 20.9% and unit growth of 29.8% for 1999.
In Japan, Fuji dominate the top ten sales chart, Olympus C-2000Z still at the top of sales and the Sony DSC-F55 is still popular along with the Olympus C-900Z (D400).
Simple Technology, Inc. today announced the availability of three new high-capacity ATA flash cards in 512MB, 800MB and 1024MB (1GB) capacities. The PC Cards are available in Type I, II and III form factors, respectively, and are ideal for notebook computers, digital still cameras, handheld computers, and other portable devices.
Nick over at PixelZone has published the first samples from the Nikon D1 courtesy of Nikon Canada (note: they are scans of prints from the D1).
Ed Hamrick, author of the excellent VuePrint and VueScan has just released a new version (3.0) of VueScan which offers support for the Minolta Dimage Scan Dual film scanner which can support both 35mm and APS film.
Delkin Devices first to ship new CF Type 2 cards
Delkin Devices introduces the first CompactFlash type II cards on the market. New thicker card will be standard in next generation digital cameras, PDA's and Audio MP3 players. Advantages to consumers include higher capacity in small form factor.
Steve Sanders posts DCS620 & Microdrive reviews
Steve's been busy again! This time he's had his hands on the wonderful Kodak Pro DCS620 (which I've previously reviewed) and the new 340MB IBM Microdrive which he tests in the DCS620 and a Canon Pro 70.
In-depth Olympus C-2000Z Review

Just posted is our latest review which is of the Olympus C-2000Z, it fits into the same class of cameras as the Nikon Coolpix 950 and the two are often compared. "When the Olympus C-2000Z was announced it surprised some people, everyone was expecting Olympus to release a 2 megapixel 3x zoom digicam to match Nikon, but most expected it to follow along the lines of the popular D600/D620L (C1400XL) digital SLR."

Sneak preview: Kodak DC240 & DC265 specifications
Outpost are now accepting pre-orders for the Nikon Coolpix 950 & 700
Nikon Coolpix 950 Information Sheet
Scanned copies of the official Nikon Information Sheet
Another 50+ photographs from the STUNNING Pro 70, I'm really liking this camera.
Reader Joseph Luk has produced a comparison page between these two Canon cameras.
Many thanks to all my visitors for helping to make this site such a success.
D# Dreamarts post multiple camera comparison #12
Dreamarts (Japan) have posted yet another invaluable direct picture quality comparison of the top consumer digital cameras. This one also demonstrates the difference between each cameras field of view from wide to zoom.
Agfa Improves a Popular ePhoto Camera by Adding Style and Reducing Cost. The ePhoto 780c ships in a metallic blue housing and will be available in the U.S. for the suggested price of $199.
More on the Fuji MX2900
New 2.3 Million Pixel MX-2900 Sports 3x Optical Zoom, Adaptable Lens and Flash Features Building upon its prior digital imaging success stories, Fuji Photo Film U.S.A., Inc., announced today its latest innovation in digital camera performance and design -- the Fujifilm MX-2900, a new double mega-pixel model featuring a 2.3 million pixel resolution and a 3x optical zoom lens.
Not much change other than the arrival of the Coolpix 700 at number eight and the BIG slide of the Fuji MX700.
PC Watch post samples from the Toshiba PDR-M4
PC Watch got their hands on a Beta Toshiba PDR-M4 (2.1 megapixels 1600x1200) and have posted some sample images from it. It's worth noting that this isn't a production camera and as such the final production release may differ in quality.
Nikon announce 950 firmware update
Nikon today announced that there will be a firmware update for the 950 and that it will be made available in mid-July.
Olympus announce 2.1 megapixel C-21
Olympus Japan today announced the new fixed focal length C-21. This tiny unit (slightly smaller than the Canon A5) sports the same 2.1 megapixel CCD as the C-2000Z but with no zoom lens (fixed 38mm lens is used instead) or manual features. UPDATED: SAMPLE IMAGES ONLINE
This from James Wakefield over at Focus-Online:
Agfa Offers Free ePhoto Digital Cameras With Purchase of Select DuoScan Scanners
Japan's Sanyo Electric Co Ltd , Olympus Optical Co Ltd , and Hitachi Maxell Ltd said on Tuesday they have jointly developed a new high-capacity memory disc for use in next-generation digital cameras.
Kodak announce DC290 - 2.1 megapixel DC260/265
Kodak today announce the Kodak DC290 which is a 2.1 (? actually the CCD is 2.3 megapixels) megapixel version of the Kodak DC265. Oh, and there's an uncompressed mode... Suggested retail price $1,099.
The ePhoto CL30 & CL50 announcements force recommended price of 1680 down to $699
In a slight departure from Digital Photography (just for a second)
Ricoh Mania Grips the Net!
They're all at it.. So to speak, both DC Resource and Imaging Resource (as well as previously reported Steves Digicams) have all posted Ricoh RDC-5000 reviews (gotta hand it to Ricoh marketing, they know how to make an impact on the Net :).
The Japanese site PC Watch have posted a "mini report" and some sample images from the Kodak DC240 including a rather strange mis-coloured image.
"Version 1.0.3 Firmware Upgrade provides a number of performance and reliability improvements including: Elimination of the Red -> Magenta Color Shift External Flash Sync is now active for all photos when this option is enabled"
Agfa Offers Free 4MB SmartMedia Card and Paper
Agfa Offers Free 4 MB SmartMedia Card and Premium Quality AgfaJet With Purchase Of ePhoto CL50 from Shopping.com. This special bundle is exclusive to those customers who purchase the ePhoto CL50 from Shopping.com, and make their purchase on, or after, Friday, June 4, 1999. The offer will be available until supplies last.
This thanks to Steves Digicams:
Unity Digital ProPower Battery Pack
Unity Digital announced the "ProPower Pack", a compact external battery pack for digital cameras that delivers 2.45 amp hours of sustained power. The ProPower Pack significantly increases the number of photographs that a digital camera can take without replacing the camera's internal batteries. Using Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) battery cells in a genuine leather pack, the ProPower Pack clips onto the photographer's belt and delivers nearly ten times more shots than using typical AA Alkaline batteries.
Coolpix 950 Firmware v1.1 update this Friday
Thanks to a reader "Patrick" who used our forums to point me to this item of news:
Steve Sanders posts Panasonic PV-DC2590 first look
Steve has had his hands on Panasonic's offering to the digital camera market (bandwagon?) with the funky PalmCam PV-DC2590.
Site improvements and "My Netscape" enhancement
In an effort to constantly improve the service level to our readers we're in the process of improving site design, specifically in the areas of easy of use, loading speed and browser compatibility. You'll see some changes in the site over the next few weeks (the most major of which will be the removal of frames) which will make the site not only look better but work better and load quicker for you.
SST (Silicon Storage Technology, Inc., Nasdaq:SSTI) today announced it has expanded its CompactFlash card family to include 32 MByte and 48 MByte density cards. The new cards are based on SST's patented ATA controller technology and flash memory design expertise. Because of this technology, SST's CompactFlash cards offer the industry's fastest sustained write performance, up to 1.4 MByte/sec. This speed benefits users of CompactFlash cards in applications such as digital cameras, where a faster write performance leads to significantly lower set-up time between pictures. With the addition of these new products, SST's CompactFlash card family now includes cards ranging in densities from 4 to 48 MBytes.
Sony tempt us with promise of a new digicam
Sony have the wrappings over their latest digicam as shown on the product webpage, the wrappings will come off tomorrow (11th Aug) according to the Japanese page.
PC Watch post a Kodak DC215 Zoom first impression, professional photographer Yamada offers his opinions on Kodak's new slimline entry-level zoom digicam.
Steve managed to get his hands on the leaflet from which came our news article of a few days ago, he's posted it up on his site. Canon describe the S10 as "The Worlds smallest and lightest 2MP digital camera with zoom and built-in flash".
Kodak DC280 Zoom Review

Just posted: Our latest digital camera review, the Kodak DC280 Zoom. The DC280 Zoom fits into the new Kodak line of digital cameras just below the recently announced DC290, the DC280 has a 30mm - 60mm (2x) zoom lens, 2.3 megapixel CCD and a host of built-in features designed to satisify the medium-level digital camera enthusiasts.

By popular demand...
The Canon PowerShot Pro 70 uses Datalight's ROM-DOS as its operating system.
Nikon Coolpix 700 Information Sheet
Scanned copies of the official Nikon Information Sheet
Sony has taken the Digital Mavica(R), the nation's best-selling digital camera since September 1997, to the next level in picture quality with the introduction today of a 1.3 million pixel camera. - why?
This update although only marked for the Japan domestic market does make some interesting improvements. (UPDATED 18/March/99)
Olympus reveals future 2.5 Megapixel SLR digicam
CeBIT: Olympus Reveals C-2500L Their Future 2.5 Megapixel SLR Filmless Digital Camera; 3X Zoom Lens, Internal & External Flash UPDATED

Just released VuePrint 7.3 - a JPEG image viewer for Windows. The main new feature may be of interest - it displays comprehensive digital camera information when reading files that have embedded EXIF, CIFF, or Olympus APP12 info.

Sorry for the late reporting of this, pictures enclosed...
The new VFIR (Very Fast IR) standard promises 16MB/s transfer, ideal for Digital Cameras.
Looks like everyone will be naming their camera "CP" from now onwards, maybe it's a marketing technique... Anyway, here's some information on a very interesting new camera from Epson, read on...
The first report of a production model Nikon Coolpix 700, the smaller brother of the outstanding Coolpix 950.
Canon Digital HyperPhoto for MiniLabs
Canon U.S.A. today announced the immediate availability of the HyperPhoto System, a fully-integrated digital photo production system. Offering the finest photo-quality output on the market today with 1,200 dots per inch (dpi) resolution, HyperPhoto transforms negatives and transparencies, reflective art, and digital media into calendars, postcards, stickers, composites and other creative mediums.
VuePrint 7.4 Released
VuePrint 7.4 is now available for downloading. If you previously paid $40.00 to register VuePrint, then this is a free upgrade. (Now with improved Canon CRW import and Nikon Coolpix 950 support).
Increased Quality and Lower Prices Enhance Mass Market Appeal for Digital Cameras, IDC Says. Worldwide Digital Camera Sales Will Approach 4.7 Million Units in 1999.
Fuji announce new cameras: Finepix 2900Z and 1500
Fuji surprise us all and announce two new and very interesting digital cameras. The 2900Z (top) sports a 2.3Megapixel CCD @ 1800 x 1200 whilst the 1500 (bottom) is a 1.5Megapixel CCD available in a variety of colours.
The Tokyo Business Show '99 was held between 18th and 21st of May. They have brief report on the Canon A50, Ricoh RDC-5000, Epson CP800 and an interesting digital camera add-on for the Cassiopeia from Casio.
Panasonic announce new digital camera
Panasonic (Matsushita) just announced the Coolshot II which features a 1.3 megapixel CCD (1280x960) and TWO CF card slots, interestingly this camera supports an optional plug-in CF format USB interface.
Lexar Officially announce JumpShot CF cards
New CF cards from Lexar won't need CF card readers, they'll only need the US$20 Lexar JumpShot cable and a USB enabled PC/iMAC: "Lexar Media Launches New Line of High-Speed, USB-Enabled CompactFlash Digital Film Cards for Digital Cameras. New CompactFlash Cards Capture High-Resolution Images Quickly; Provide Fast, Hassle-Free Photo Transfer to Desktop Computers Via the USB Port With Lexar JumpSHOT(tm) Cable; Cards Guaranteed to Work With CompactFlash Cameras"
Nikon Professional Digital SLR D1 (2.74 mpixel)
15 June 1999, 20:00 Tokyo Time:
The anticipation has been carefully built over the last six months, ever since the 950 was announced we also knew about Nikons "unnamed digital SLR", more recently Nikon USA's website stated "exciting news coming"... Well now it has a name, and we have all the specs!
PC Watch and their professional photographer Yamada post a preview of the new Nikon D1 Digital SLR. Most of the notes in their preview seem to be based around the Nikon Japan launch.
Sony announce new black DSC F-55K
Sony Japan announce new black coloured DSC F-55KB (known as the F-55 outside Japan). No other specification changes are made and the camera is noted for release in "July 1999" at 10,000 YEN more (~ US$82) than the older silver coloured camera.
Steve Sanders posts ProPower Battery Pack review
Unity Digital have an interesting product in the new ProPower NiMH Battery pack which retails for US$99.95, it provides 2450mAh of power for digital camera users in a small neat rechargeable pack.
Windows World Expo / Tokyo 99
Nikon show off the D1, Sony show the D770 and new black coloured DSC-F55, Olympus show the C-21 (small!), Fuji show the MX1500 and MX2900, Toshiba show the M4 and Epson the CP800. Iomega slice a PC Card Clik! drive in half!!
Canon have posted english releases of their version 2.4 TWAIN drivers for the Powershot series of cameras (350, 600, A5, A5 Zoom, A50, Pro 70). This release does seem to do some extra processing when importing CCDRAW images.
As an update to our previous D770 information sheet we now have all the details on the Sony DKC-FP3 digital camera which is aimed more at the professional end of the digicam market and features an IEE1394 (FireWire) connection.
Casio introduce THREE new digital cameras
Casio have announced the introduction of:
QV-8000SX (1.3 megapixels, 8 x optical zoom)
QV-2000UX (2.1 megapixels, 3x optical zoom)
and officially announce a camera we've known about for a while
QV-5500SX (1.3 megapixels, fixed focal length lens).
PC Watch post pictures of Casio QV2000UX
PC Watch today in their Macworld update posted the first pictures of the Casio QV2000UX, specs and pictures inside.
PC Watch Sales Charts: In Japan, not much changes in the digital camera sales charts, Fuji still dominate the top ten sales chart with no less than four cameras, Olympus C-2000Z still at the top of sales and the Sony DSC-F55 is still popular along with the Olympus C-900Z (D400). And of course the Coolpix 950 in short supply...
John Henshall's excellent Nikon D1 report
Stumbled across this excellently written Nikon D1 (Professional Digital SLR) report by John Henshall, a recommended read for anyone interested in the Digital SLR which is likely to completely shake up the diigtal camera market.
Imaging Resource post DC280 review
Much to my displeasure Imaging-Resource have posted a review of the Kodak DC280 a full two days before my NDA allows me to release my complete review, I've had a DC280 since early July on an extended loan and review and am only allowed to publish that review after the 14th.. Looks like a communication problem between Kodak Singapore and Kodak US.
New Sony DSC: In hand
Sony have posted yet another picture of their upcoming 2.1 megapixel, Swivelling 5x Carl Zeiss zoom lens, MemoryStick storage digicam. Now we can see its size, in this picture the user is holding it with the lens swivelled 90 degrees upwards, looking DOWN onto the LCD. This picture also seems to reveal that the object on top of the lens is a pop-up flash (see the hinge).
EXCLUSIVE: Once more we can bring you the inside information on a new digital camera release, this time the much awaited Sony DSC-F505. Loosely based around the DSC-F55 this digital camera has had an interesting marketing campaign over the last few days, just a few minutes ago I received a confirmation of specifications and the name DSC-F505 for the camera.
Matsushita Electric, SanDisk and Toshiba Agree to Join Forces to Develop and Promote Next Generation Secure Memory Card
Six new cameras in the database
FotoNation's FotoDeveloper(TM), provides application developers a single interface to support multiple digital camera protocols without having to customize the code or the user interface for each different camera manufacturer, saving development time and costs.
The excellent Picture Information Extractor has been updated
Digitalkamera.de report on the new products coming from SanDisk
UPDATED: The excellent Picture Information Extractor now supports Nikon Coolpix 950
Thanks to one of my readers for sending in this tip
Samsung Electronics is seeking to extend its dominance of the memory market to flash but it has made little progress so far as a supplier of that technology for hot MP3 audio players.
To quote: "Olympus raises the bar with 2.1 million pixels, unparalleled exposure control, and a great user interface!"
Nikon Coolpix 950 vs. Canon Pro 70
This long awaited comparison article is now complete and available online.
The Japanese magazine D# Dreamarts have published a low-light shot comparison between various cameras on their website.
Kopin Introduces CyberDisplay 640C
World's Smallest and Lowest Power Color VGA Displays for Ultra-Portable Electronics Products (read also digital cameras). This would facilitate LCD driven viewfinders which would finally give you an SLR-TTL view of the image you're taking.
The Imaging Application with Ink, Voice and Text Annotations for the latest version of Windows CE on the Palm-size PC and Handheld PC Pro Devices.
Using the Coolpix 950 with Studio Flash Systems
This just in from the Nikon Europe support site (thanks to John Edgecombe for spotting this one). This camera is capable of Aperture/Shutter priority exposure mode and is fitted with a connector for an external flash unit. This allows the E-950 to be used in conjunction with studio flash units.
Those guys over at PC Watch in Japan get to play with all the best toys!! Note that these samples are from "beta" cameras.
Singapore Botanical Gardens Gallery
The latest addition to the galleries is this set of photographs taken yesterday at the Singapore Botanical Gardens. The gallery is "Mixed" meaning that there are images taken with both the Kodak DC265 and Nikon Coolpix 950.
People have been reporting a problem with the discussion forums over the "NEW" tag. Here's how to resolve this.
SanDisk Will Supply Panasonic With MultiMediaCards
SanDisk Will Supply Panasonic With MultiMediaCards for New Panasonic Digital Video Camera: Removable, Reusable Flash Memory Card Allows Video Camera To Also Function As A Digital Still Camera
Toshiba has developed a new IC package that's as thin as a piece of paper. Toshiba has plans to use the technology to make higher-capacity flash memory storage cards by next year, and claims it can open the door to new applications. . By the first half of next year, Toshiba plans to ship samples of a 1-Gbit SmartMedia card which uses four stacked 256-Mbit flash devices.
Infotrends: The robust digital camera market is starting to change the face of photography in America, according to a new forecast report from InfoTrends Research Group, Inc. Digital camera unit sales will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 38% through 2003, reaching over 6 million units in North America. In 1999, revenues will grow 35% to nearly $1.2 billion.
Steve Sanders posts Olympus C2000Z user review
Steve has just posted his own user review of the Olympus C2000Z, which I will be reviewing within the next month (please stop asking me to review it by email, the delay was due to poor communication with Olympus Singapore).
A little background on the microdrive: When two IBM designers started tinkering around in a motor-research project five years ago, they weren't planning to create a new form factor around 1-inch disks. After all, the industry hadn't embraced a smaller disk-drive format in more than a decade.
Firstly Epson announce the new Epson PhotoPC 650 which is a 1.09 megapixel USB (using Lexar's new JumpShot CF cards) for less than US$350! Secondly they officially announce the PhotoPC 800 (2.1 megapixel) in the US at US$699.
Mark Czerniec's Nikon Coolpix 700 gallery
It's not often I make mention of online galleries, there's just so many of them out there, but I'm always impressed by photographers who can take basic equipment and produce something beautiful. Mark Czerniec posted a link to his site on our Samples and Galleries forum, all his shots were taken with the fixed-focal-length Nikon Coolpix 700 and are a perfect example of how it's possible to take excellently composed, exposed colourful and interesting photographs without big lenses, manual features and all that fluff.
Rob Says: "Thanks also to those who took the time to send an email explaining their thoughts about and experiences with the D1. Among those was Mike Deluca, US Product Manager for Digital Capture at Kodak. Mike forward a detailed document responding to a number of the assessments I made of Kodak's pro digital cameras in the D1 report. As I'm sure that prospective purchasers of pro digital cameras in the next few months are as keen as I am to understand Kodak's current offerings and how they measure up to the D1, I've excerpted Kodak's document below, framed by my comments in response. Be warned, this is highly technical stuff. To ensure fair representation of Kodak's position I've posted it largely unedited."
PC Watch post Kodak D280J sample images
The always-there-first PC Watch website has the exclusive again, this time sample shosts from Kodak's first 2 megapixel digicam the DC280J.
DC Resource post Fujifilm MX-2900 review
DC Resource have had their hands on the interesting Fujifilm MX-2900, and although this is still a pre-production model it's the first US model review yet.
Toshiba announce their 64MB SmartMedia
Toshiba today announced their OEM 2 x 256Mbit SSFDC SmartMedia (64MB), this will be the largest SmartMedia card announced to date and brings SmartMedia part of the way to catching up with CompactFlash (Type I).
Phew! - Welcome to the new single paged (no frames) Digital Photography Review. It's been a long job but I've finally converted all the previously framed pages in the site to non-framed, in the process I've streamlined alot of the back-end database design and associated scripts.
Nikon finally release the updater for Windows! It's been a long wait for most NTSC Coolpix 950 owners, Nikon mysteriously published the firmware updated for Mac way back but withdrew the Windows updater. Here are the official list of bugs fixed in this release:
Ever wonder WHY manufacturers drop the price of products?... hmmm.
Addonics iMac coloured USB CF reader
Addonics Technologies will begin shipping next week a lightweight (4.5 oz.) plug & play Compact Flash Card reader that uses the USB port to provide an easy, inexpensive and high speed way to transfer digital images or data to a PC or iMac.
Sony US have also announced the DSC-F505
Sony US have also announced the DSC-F505, here's the official word.
Dave Sheldon reviews his recently acquired Sony DSC-D700, some first impressions.
UPDATE: Sneak preview: Kodak DC200 plus, DC240 & DC265 specifications
Not much digital photography news these last few days, but February proved to be an important month for this site.
AGN Hardware have done an interesting preview on the IBM Microdrive
PC Watch report on the Japan Photo Exposition 99
PC watch report that the Toshiba PDR-M4 will be on the Japanese market at the end of May at a price of ¥89,800 (about US$700). [updated]
Fuji's new MX-2700 storms into the Japanese market.
CeBIT: The World's Highest Capacity CompactFlash Card
The Japanese Technology news site PCWatch post the first Nikon Coolpix 950 review, although this is a beta machine, and the review is in Japanese.
The Japanese PC-Watch and German DigitalKamera website have yet more pictures of the Oly C-2500L
After a slight slog I've translated the Japanese Olympus C-2000Z "before you buy" FAQ. There are some facts in here which may be of interest to prospective purchasers.
Epson's Image Authentication System Provides Users With Image Validation Technology for Applications in Law Enforcement, Insurance and Quality Assurance Inspections
First hour with the Nikon Coolpix 950
I've finally got my hands on a production Nikon Coolpix 950 which I'll be reviewing over the next couple of weeks. Hopefully the review will be up before next weekend.

Here are a few very quick samples I've taken in the first hour with the camera.
An interesting article by Dirck Halstead, a Whitehouse journalist who uses the Pro70.
To all those people who are patiently waiting for my Coolpix 950 review...
Apologies for my absence, and D# Dreamarts update their digital camera comparison shots. News on the Pro70 vs. 950 article
Sony Japan announce the new 1.3 Megapixel Mavicas
The new Mavicas have popped up again... PC Watch report that they will be on sale on 20th May 1999 in Japan.
New TWAIN drivers for the Powershot Pro70, A5, A5Zoom, A50 and 350.
A few years ago, the memory-card market for digital cameras was up for grabs as competing formats fought for industry acceptance. Today, it's much less of an issue, as CompactFlash cards, introduced by SanDisk Corp. in 1994, are now used in more than 70% of all digital-camera designs, according to International Data Corp.
Steve Sanders posts Toshiba PDR-M3 user review
"Toshiba's new PDR-M3 expands on its megapixel brother with the addition of a 3x (35-105mm 35mm equivalent) optical zoom lens with macro focus down to only 25cm. Toshiba made some other improvements over the PDR-M1 that improved the overall picture quality. "
The Nikon Coolpix 950 comes back into the charts at no.3 to the Sony DSC-F55K and Olympus C2000-Z.
PC World post Nikon Coolpix 950 and Olympus C2000Z short article
PC World have posted a short article on the pros and cons of the two top condenders, to quote: "Although some of the latest digital cameras are small enough to fit in your shirt pocket, their prices may bore a hole through it. Svelte new models from Nikon and Olympus deliver beautiful, ultrahigh-resolution images, but each of them carries a hefty $999 price tag. "
Flashpoint announce winners of Digita script contest
"We're officially announcing the winners of the Digita Scripting Contest. We received some really cool scripts that not only enhance the overall digital imaging experience, but transform the camera into a variety of in the field tools. "
From the Society for Information Display Show in San Jose is this info on an OEM CMOS digital camera kit developed by Sound & Vision and HP, this camera doesn't have a traditional LCD but instead uses Kopin's new microdisplay (as featured on earlier in the news).
SanDisk Corporation today denied all allegations in a complaint filed by Lexar Media Inc. in U.S. District Court charging SanDisk with unfair competition, false advertising, trade libel and interference with Lexar's business.
Digital Photography Review exceeds one million page impressions per month and keeps on growing. Many thanks to all my visitors for helping make the site such a success in such a short time.
160 and 320MB CompactFlash from Pretec
Pretec Electronics Corporation, the creator of CompactModem(TM) and Compact I/O(TM) card, will be demonstrating the 160MB CompactFlash(TM) (CF+) card, the highest capacity CompactFlash(TM) memory card available in the world today, at Microsoft Windows CE Developers Conference on June 6-9 at Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado.
New Fujis impressions and some lenses
From one of my "anonymous sources" comes the following impressions on the new Fuji MX2900 and MX1500. And news of add-on lenses for the MX2700 and MX2900.
CycloVision now for 950, C2000Z and DC265
CycloVision Extends 360-Degree Imaging Technology To Support Integration with Three New Leading Brand Digital Cameras. ParaShot Attachment Now Also Supports the Nikon CoolPix 950, Kodak DC265 Zoom and Olympus C-2000 Zoom Cameras.
Nikon D1 official press release
Nikon Introduces New Digital Professional SLR Fast, Light, Flexible and Professional Standard 2.7 Megapixel Resolution
A survey conducted last week by the Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association (CEMA) found that digital consumer electronics products top Dad's list of Father's Day gift ideas. When asked to choose from a list of consumer electronics devices, the majority of fathers surveyed (25 percent) indicated that they would like to receive a personal computer, or a digital camera or camcorder (15 percent) as a Father's Day gift. A DVD player and a color television tied for third place (8 percent each) and a cellular phone or pager ranked fifth (6 percent).
Olympus America Inc., Digital & Imaging Systems Group, world leader in film and filmless photography, today announced the Olympus USB SmartMedia Reader/Writer, the fastest way to download images from any SmartMedia digital camera. The new device complements the Olympus line of connectivity options, which includes serial, parallel, and PCMCIA port image download capability, and floppy disk compatibility, making the Olympus product offerings broader than any other.
Kodak Japan announce 2.3 megapixel DC280J
Kodak Japan announce new 2.3 megapixel DC280J. Here's a translation of the Japanese pages specifications.
Kodak DC240 firmware update
Kodak have posted a firmware update for the DC240 which contains the following updates: firmware bug fixes, increased shutter speed at f8, improved representation of saturated reds, improved LCD preview response.
Kodak Professional post new firmware for both the DCS520/560 (Canon EOS D2000 / D6000) and DCS620. Updates include tuned up Portrait mode and minor interface refinements.
The Japanese site PC Watch have posted a "first impressions" of the Olympus C-21, here's the complete translation of their article. UPDATED: Comparison pics
Sony DSC-D770
Over the last month there have been various rumours about the new Sony DSC-D770 (sucessor to the D700) here are all the vital statistics and information you need.
A warning to people who post photographs on Geocities: Yahoo, faced with a growing boycott of its recently launched, integrated Yahoo-GeoCities, said today it is likely to announce a change in its terms of service, which many users believe gives away rights to their intellectual property.
Foveon Inc. has built a high-end digital still camera that aims to rival the quality of analog film. The new startup is backed by Carver Mead, the inventor of the gallium-arsenide transistor, the silicon compiler and the artificial retina. Although Mead is not revealing details of the three analog VLSI image chips that are to be used in place of a charge-coupled device (CCD), he claims the Foveon camera spits out a 48-Mbyte, 4,000 x 4,000-pixel Photoshop file.
This is the latest word from the NikonTech USA website:
Nikon Japan (as expected) have just posted the Coolpix 950 v1.1 firmware update, uploadable from both PC and Mac via serial cable.
New Affiliation with State Street Direct
As you may have noticed we had been affiliated with Outpost.Com for price listings and direct purchases through the website. After feedback from readers we realised that Outpost couldn't offer buyers the best prices, product knowledge or reliability.
Even though I've already updated my 950 (it's a PAL version) the US and EUROPE have officially announced their firmware updates, heres what the US site says:
Kodak Announce DCS330 Professional SLR Digicam
Kodak have announced the DSC330 Professional Digital Camera with a new Indium Tin Oxide (ITO) 3 megapixel CCD (2008 x 1504) based on the same body as the DCS315, that of the Nikon Pronea 6i and as such can take numerous Nikon and 3rd party lenses and other accessories.
Sanyo, Olympus announce 2" ID digital camera storage
Japan's Sanyo Electric Co Ltd , Olympus Optical Co Ltd , and Hitachi Maxell Ltd said on Tuesday they have jointly developed a new high-capacity memory disc for use in next-generation digital cameras.
Kodak Japan announce DC215 Zoom
Kodak Japan announce the new Kodak DC215 Zoom aimed squarely at the small, light pocketable end of the market it's the direct successor to the DC210 equipped with a 29mm - 58mm zoom (2x) and 1/3" 1 megapixel CCD (1152 x 864).
PC Watch Digital Camera Sales Charts: In Japan, the Fuji MX1500 bursts its way into the first place in the sales charts, the Olympus C2000Z is pushed down to second place and Kodak's new DC280 breaks in at number 7.
And Sony reveal a little more info, auto/manual focus, macro mode, manual white balance preset, spot metering and by fiddling with the image they've posted I've managed to discover it has a 10 x zoom (can't confirm if that's 10 x optical or 5 x optical, 2 x digital). We also know it has an L shaped profile, video output, will use Memory Stick for storage (whoopy doo!), has a Carl Zeiss lens and USB. Other rumours indicate a 5x zoom lens.
Exclusive: Canon S10 2.1 mp, prototype or product?
EXCLUSIVE: This from an anonymous source, I've received a photograph of Canon's S10, a 2.1 megapixel, 2x zoom, A50 look-alike. News from various sources contradicts itself, some say this is simply a mock-up prototype, some say it's product and will be launched in a month or so. Only time will tell.
So today is Monday 16th, my site is down but I can still create news items, so hopefully y'all see this as soon as things get better.
New Sony DSC Mystery Tour continues...
Anyone getting tired of this yet?? Sony today revealed that the new DSC will have an MPEG capability. Not really a surprise saying that several of the Mavicas and the recent DSC-F55 do. This image also confirms my guess of yesterday that the camera has a hybrid available light / backlit LCD. One other thing, todays page notes the next release as 20th (Friday) which we can safely assume will be the launch date and they can finally reveal all.

Lucky guy! Steve has posted his first impressions of a beta Japanese model Fuji MX-2900, he says: "The soon to be released FujiFilm FinePix 2900Z (aka MX-2900) zoom has the largest CCD imager of any consumer digicam that we have tested so far. It is an impressive 2.3 megapixel CCD that yields 1800 x 1200 pixel images"

Quick Poll reveals >32MB most popular

Last week I took a very quick poll on rec.photo.digital of what size CompactFlash owners of that type of storage owned. Ignoring the supplied with camera 8MB CF cards the majority of owners have cards of more than 32MB.

Our latest professional digital camera review: The Kodak DCS 620 (based on the Nikon F5 body, 2 megapixel CCD)

Fuji MX-2700 review

Just posted: the latest of our 2 megapixel digital camera reviews comes the Fuji MX-2700. "The MX-2700 is Fuji's answer to the easily pocketable easy-to-use 2 megapixel class camera and to that extent it fits the bill. A worthy successor to the popular MX-700."

Sony DSC-D700 review posted

The Sony DSC-D700 caused quite a stir in the Digital Photography world when it was announced last year. Many people were excited by it's specifications: five times zoom, full SLR-TTL viewfinder, 1.5 Megapixel CCD and all the manual controls you'd expect to find on a true SLR.

Nikon Coolpix 700 review

Just posted: The latest addition to our ever growing reviews database comes the Nikon Coolpix 700. The fixed lens "little brother" to the Coolpix 950 doesn't disappoint on image quality, portability, and most importantly value for money.

Kodak DC265 Review Posted

Our latest digital camera review is posted, "The Kodak DC265 Zoom (referred to as the DC265 from now onward) entered the digital camera market recently as the upgraded release of the very popular DC260. "

Nikon Coolpix 950 Review Online

It's here folks, a complete in-depth review of what is probably one of the most eagerly awaited digital cameras of 1999. From specifications to body and construction, operation, menus, timings, file sizes, all the features, image quality, samples galleries and more...

This from one of our readers from Amateur Photographer (UK): "Scientists from Cambridge University and Hitachi have developed technology that is likely to produce digital cameras which can store millions of images."

The latest and potential most useful addition to the site is this complete digital photography glossary, dive in, browse around and maybe you'll learn a little.
Macro experiments with a Canon PowerShot Pro 70 and an old 37mm video 2 x telephoto lens.
Nikon Japan have posted the first official Nikon Coolpix 950 samples
An anonymous source has just forwarded the following information
Reader Gino Creglia sent me this info on some experimentation he's done with a Tiffen 2.0x telephoto and 0.05x super-wide angle
John Cowley, the author over at Lone Star Digital has just completed his review of the Kodak DCS315.
Don't you love the internet...
Nikon Coolpix 950, Nikon Coolpix 700, Fuji MX-2700, Ricoh RDC5000, etc.
Shot through a glass box, but you'll get the idea
Lots more exclusive photographs from the Olympus booth at CeBIT. This time we've got seven different shots of the Olympus C-2500L and two of a new unknown Olympus camera.
More Canon Pro 70 images...
I just returned from a long weekend, so what's available and how much?
Found on a Japanese website
PC Watch do a sort-of head-to-head comparison of the Nikon CP950 and Olympus C2000Z
Potential advertisers please take note of our latest statistics in the media kit.
According to a new report from InfoTrends Research Group, Inc., a new breed of photo minilabs, called digital minilabs, are poised to play a critical role in the mainstream adoption of digital photography by allowing users to bypass the hassles associated with processing and printing digital photographs themselves.
Nikon Coolpix 950 macro shots
Rising to the challenge I took a few macro shots with the 950 to see just how close you can get.
SanDisk to supply Kodak for 265 Pro
SanDisk Will Supply Kodak With 64MB CompactFlash Film Cards for New Kodak Professional 265 Interactive Imaging System
Traditional photographers have been slow to adopt digital cameras, as they don't want to discard the lenses and accessories that only fit their film-based cameras. Now Kodak has an answer: it is teaming up with chip maker Intel to produce a device that lets a normal stills camera take digital pictures.
Nikon Coolpix 700 samples gallery
As a prelude to the upcoming Nikon Coolpix 700 production review I've posted a small samples gallery of 18 shots.
Thanks go to Thierry Bousch on rec.photo.digital for spotting these two sets of samples.
Steve Sanders posts Canon Pro70 user review
Steve has posted a short user-review of the Canon PowerShot Pro 70: "I just finished posting my user review of the Canon PS Pro70 camera. This is one impressive digicam and when it is mated to the Canon 380EX Speedlite it becomes an affordable but very powerful "pro" digital camera. The image quality is spectacular due to its superb Canon lens and a nearly foolproof white balance and focus system."
Just received this note from James Wakefield over at Focus Online (one of our affiliates): Just posted a review of the Epson Stylus Photo 1200 Printer on my site by Brian Allen, thought it may be of interest to your readers as I believe it is the only review currently available.
Steve Sanders posts Ricoh RD-5000 user review
Steve's had a busy weekend putting together this brief user review of yet another 2.3 megapixel camera, this time it's the slightly quirky Ricoh RDC-5000 which has a sliding cover door over the LCD, 8MB of internal storage if you don't feel like using memory cards (hmm) and SmartMedia.
D# Digital Press (newly renamed site) have just posted some samples from the Fuji MX2700, MX2900Z and MX1500 side-by-side. It's worth noting that the MX2900Z and MX1500 are pre-production cameras.
User review of the Kenko 8x32 monocular and adapter
Max Lyons: "I just received my Kenko 8x32 monocular and adapter for Nikon digital cameras (900/950) from CKC power. Here are some of my observations and some sample pictures I took this evening... ...Thus, using the monocular the camera has an 35mm-equivalent focal range of 450mm to 910mm"
Photoshop Printing Articles
My good friend and affiliate site webmaster Tham Kok Leong over at Digital Darkroom has just posted some articles about Photo Printing in Photoshop especially on the Epson 750 / 1200 which may be especially valuable to digital camera owners.
Imaging Resource post MX2700 review
Just ahead of my own review of the MX2700, Imaging Resource have posted a review of Fuji's tiny MX2700, they say "Resolution is extremely high, at about 750 lines per picture height horizontally, and nearly 800 lines per picture height vertically. (This is as good or better than anything we've measured to date! - June, 1999) The MX-2700's lens is also very good, producing very little geometric distortion, only about 0.4% barrel distortion, and virtually no chromatic aberration."
Digital cameras are moving beyond specialty markets to become tools that can fuel business initiatives. Digital cameras are developing a new image. Not long ago, these products were typically considered either high-end specialty gear for photojournalism or graphics projects, or as low-end electronic toys for consumers. But a growing number of companies are looking at the hardware as tools that can propel business initiatives.
Digital cameras are moving beyond specialty markets to become tools that can fuel business initiatives. Digital cameras are developing a new image. Not long ago, these products were typically considered either high-end specialty gear for photojournalism or graphics projects, or as low-end electronic toys for consumers. But a growing number of companies are looking at the hardware as tools that can propel business initiatives.
Steve Sanders posts MX2700 user review
Everybody's at it! (so to speak) Steve has now posted a user review of the MX2700, in which he concludes "At the time of this writing (June 1999) the MX-2700 is a good value for the ~$550 price. Fuji makes it an even better deal by throwing in a FREE $100 FD-A2 flashpath adapter for cameras sold through August 31, 1999. I would recommend that anyone who buys this camera invests in a good flash card reader as the 1800x1200 images are about a megabyte each. Serial port downloading is extremely slow and the FlashPath adapter is not that much faster. I hope that Fuji adopts the USB port for future digicams as most PCs are now equipped with this faster device. "
Win one of five Olympus C2000Z!
Announcing a new competition in association with Imaging Resource and the Digital Camera Resource page you can win one of five Olympus C2000Z's ! The competition ends on August 17th and is only open to US residents (sorry!). To enter just click on the Olympus competition banners all around the site!
Rob Galbraith posts Nikon D1 first-look
Rob Galbraith, professional photographer, author and photojournalist has just posted the first-look at the Nikon D1. He says "A trip to New York last week afforded me an opportunity to spend some quality time with a pre-production Nikon D1 digital camera. The camera, known as Sample 43 and the only pre-production unit currently circulating in North America, was on display in the bustling, crowded Nikon booth at the PC Expo trade show."
PhotoPoint.Com celebrate 1 millionth photo
PhotoPoint.com Members Share Over One Million Photos Digital Imaging Explosion Drives Growth of Popular Photo Sharing Site.
Steve Sanders posts Agfa CL-50 user review
Steve Just posted another user review, this time it's the Agfa ePhoto CL-50, he says "There are some positives here, really! I bought the camera (tried to get a loaner from Agfa but they said no twice -- guess now I know why) for only $525 from www.ubid.com and there's a $100 mail-in rebate for U.S. buyers until August 31, 1999. $425 for a brand new and fully warrantied 1.3 megapixel camera with a 3x optical zoom and 2-inch LCD ain't bad. I would have to recommend that most people spend a little more and get the ePhoto 1680 instead, it just works better. "
July 1999 edition of Digital Journalist online
For those of you how haven't yet seen The Digital Journalist online magazine it's a compilation of articles by professional photographers and journalists who work out in the field with combinations of professional digital equipment and traditional cameras to bring us some of the photographs that make our front pages and magazine covers. A worthy read with some beautiful photography, well worth spending an hour on.
Dave Etchells over at Imaging-Resource dropped me a note:
Professional Photographer Yamada posts on PC Watch a vast image quality comparison between all of the top two megapixel zoom, two megapixel fixed and less than two megapixel digital cameras taken at all the possible compression settings. Including new cameras such as the Sony DSC-D770, Olympus C-21 (beta), Epson CP-800, Kodak DC280 and Fuji MX2900.
Here's what they say: "The '99 PPA (Professional Photographers of America) Annual Convention and Trade Show is now underway in Atlanta, and we'll have some selected highlights from it appearing here over the next few days. - There isn't a whole lot that's truly new, so there won't be a huge amount of news from it, but there are a few things worth reporting"
Kodak announce DC260 v1.0.7 firmware
Kodak have just announced their v1.0.7 firmware update for the DC260, this update is a minor update which Eliminates the Red -> Magenta Colour Shift problem.
SmartMedia storage relief is here, 32MB at a time
Just received a note from long-time reader David S. Weikel that Olympus 32MB SmartMedia is finally shipping in the US, which will be a huge relief for C2000Z owners who are struggling on 8 and 16MB SmartMedia cards. Here's an extract of his email:
Just a quick note to let all my visitors know that you WILL experience some downtime on the site over the next 24 hours (when exactly it will take place I'm not quite sure, it should take about two hours total). The downtime is to install the latest version of the site with lots of changes (I'll post a complete list of improvements when the site is live).
Sony reveal one more layer
Haha.. I had a little chuckle to myself, Sony really are playing with us on this new digicam, talk about building hype. They've revealed a new layer today, the fact that the new DSC digicam sports a Carl Zeiss lens.
Sony reveal DSC bikini picture
Again, another layer is revealed, now you can see a "bikini" picture of their upcoming DSC digicam. We now know it has an L shaped profile, video output, will use Memory Stick for storage (whoopy doo!), has a Carl Zeiss lens and USB. Other rumours indicate a 5x zoom lens.
Steve Sanders posts Fuji MX-2900 user review
Steve managed to get his hands on one of the first Fuji MX2900's, he's written a user review of the camera which is officially launched today (17th August) @ MSRP of $899. Here's what he says:
Sony 64MB MemoryStick
Sony have just announced the MSA-64A memory stick. The chewing-gum sized stick now expands the range of available MemorySticks from 4MB to 64MB, meaning that Sony have now overtaken SmartMedia as far as storage capacity per physical size is concerned. Availability (in Japan) will be November 21st, MSRP price is 20,000 YEN (US$164 - $2.60/MB).
Sony Japan officially announce DSC-F505
Today was the day, after a week of marketing we're finally given all the stats on this peculiar looking, but technically very interesting digital camera. Inside, we've got the complete rundown, all the specifications and even sample images.
The Japanese Magazine D# Sharp have posted a short article on the New Sony DSC F505 along with a set of sample images. Some interesting pictures and undoubtedly good quality.
The Japanese D# Sharp Magazine have just posted a mini-review of the Olympus C2500-L along with a few sample images.