As we reported yesterday (thanks to a slip by TWICE.COM) Sony have today announced the MVC-CD1000, a 2.1 megapixel digital camera based on the FD-95, this camera is unique in so much as it writes images not to flash memory or floppy disks but directly to 3.5" 156MB CD-R discs. Sony, as ever breaking with convention (nothing wrong with that) but also interestingly coming to the market with yet another storage format (which incedently they'll profit from). Each CD-R is hoped to be priced around $4 which makes each (non erasable) image shot cost approximately $0.03. Camera price? $1300, shipping August.

Sony Mavica CD1000, click for larger image

The advantage? Cheap, large storage, can be read by standard CD-ROM drives, big 10x zoom lens. Disadvantages I see.. (a) Yet another storage standard, (b) Camera size, (c) Availability and pricing of mini CD-R's, (d) Non-rewritable nature (surely a 64MB buffer wouldn't have been out of the question) (e) Price...

I also think it's a pity that Sony decided to use the FD-95 as the base for this camera, I'm sure a lot of owners / buyers would have been keener to see such a device based on the D770 with a 3 megapixel CCD...

Click here for Imaging-Resource's first look of the MVC-CD1000

Here's the official Sony press release:

Sony Introduces World's First CD-R Based Digital Still Camera

Expands Mavica Digital Camera's Legacy of Universality

NEW YORK, June 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Sony Electronics today announced the first ever CD Recordable (CD-R) based digital still camera, the Mavica® MVC-CD1000. The new Mavica camera uses a high-capacity 156MB 3 1/2-inch CD-R in an easy-to-use camera for Americans who use the 260 million CD or CD-R drives with their PCs, and even those who don't.

Each CD-R for Sony's new CD-R Mavica camera can hold up to 160 1600x1200 (2.1 mega-pixel) images at a price that encourages archiving and sharing. That's the equivalent of more than four rolls of 36-exposure film. And at around $4 a disc and no processing required, the camera provides instant gratification at a fraction of the cost.

High Resolution -- 10x Optical Zoom -- Advanced Features

Above and beyond the innovative use of CD-R technology, the Mavica MVC-CD1000 offers advanced picture quality, including 2.1 mega-pixel resolution and the ability to shoot in TIFF and high quality MPEG (MPEG HQ) modes. Sony's implementation of the CD-R format enables faster image processing, dramatically decreasing image recording time. Images captured with the MVC-CD1000 can be recorded in several modes, including JPEG compression or TIFF in UXGA, SXGA, XGA or VGA image sizes.

The MVC-CD1000's powerful combination of high resolution and 10x optical zoom -- equivalent to a 35mm camera 400mm lens -- enables the MVC-CD1000 to fill the frame with subjects from a greater distance and capture them with greater clarity. Working with the powerful zoom, Sony has also added a feature rarely seen in the digital camera marketplace: a through-the-lens viewfinder using a bright, crisp color LCD to ensure that what you see is what you shoot.

This high performance Mavica MVC-CD1000 also includes:

  • Manual adjustments -- shutter priority, aperture priority functions and a manual focus ring
  • Super SteadyShot® optical image stabilization -- removes unwanted user camera shake for a clearer image, a feature found on many camcorders, but only on Sony's digital still cameras
  • MPEG HQ Mode -- allows for MPEG full frame playback on a standard TV rather than 1/4 frame playback that had been previously available and an increased frame rate of 16 frames per second that results in smoother movement
  • Built-in intelligent flash and added external flash terminal (for use with the HVL-F1000 optional flash) -- range of over 30 feet allows the camera to capture images at longer distances under adverse lighting and the MVC-CD1000 communicates mode and exposure intelligence directly with the flash. The optional Sony HVL-F1000 flash is available now for
    about $120
  • Rechargeable InfoLithium® battery with AccuPower(TM) meter with battery life approximately 100 minutes or 1,100 images in still image standard mode with the LCD on;
  • 3:2 picture size ratio option -- creating a digital image that is the same size ratio as a standard 4x6 film print
  • 12 bit A/D Conversion -- allows a wider dynamic range from highlight to shadow
  • Precision digital zoom -- with newly developed interpolation technology users can capture a smoother and more natural image
  • In-camera zoom/trim and image re-sizing capability.

The Mavica MVC-CD1000 ships with five one-time writeable CD-Rs and will be available in August for about $1,300.

Thanks to Imaging-Resource for pictures of the camera