At the Focus On Imaging 2002 show last week in Birmingham Rollei had a mysterious camera in a glass case. It turns out that this camera is Rollei's latest foray into the digital realm. The d530 flex is a five megapixel with a non-removable three times optical zoom digital camera with a true TTL optical reflex type viewfinder (even has a micro-lens focusing screen). Curiously the camera only captures in RAW format. Storage is provided by a PCMCIA slot and playback on a 2.5" LCD monitor. This is a power hungry beast and requires no less than six AA batteries and is priced at £1,700 (inc VAT) - approx US$2,000 without taxes.

Press release:

Gimme Five

Rollei is upgrading its successful digital single-lens reflex camera family with the five-megapixel Rollei d530 flex

Equipped with a five million pixel CCD and clad in a new, sleek black look, the Rollei d530 flex is a worthy successor to the proven Rollei d30 flex. The digital SLR is fitted with a 10-30 mm f/2.8-4 HFT zoom lens. The images are captured via the PCMCIA interface on MicroDrive, CompactFlash or SmartMedia cards or on any other conventional media. With two automatic and one manual program, exposure control is extremely flexible. A wide assortment of flash modes ensure that the lighting is always perfect. An SCSI port is available for direct data transfer to a PC or Mac (or remote control), and there is also a video port. The Rollei d530 flex will be available in the 2nd half of 2002 and will cost under 1700 Pound Sterling (incl. VAT).

With its outstanding optical and technical refinements, the new Rollei d530 flex offers the more demanding digital photographer absolute top quality and ease of handling. Now packed with 5 megapixels and sporting a smart black appearance, it slips effortlessly into the squad of semi-professional digital cameras.

The Rollei d530 flex has a large, bright optical reflex viewfinder with a micro-lens focusing screen. It allows eyesight compensation between -3 and +2 diopters. The 2.5 inch TFT colour monitor with 112,000 pixels makes framing easy, particularly as the brightness can be regulated according to the angle of view. The camera status and current settings like the frame number, flash mode, self-timer, battery status, time, date, exposure data (speed/aperture), exposure correction, erase modes, single and double exposures, PAL/NTSC operation and manual release are indicated on the power-saving black-and-white LCD.

Exposure control is either manual or via two automatic programs -oriented to fastest shutter speed or maximum depth-of-field. The CCD chip permits centre-weighted TTL integral metering.

The phase comparison autofocus system provides for the necessary sharpness down to 0.6 m. In addition, manual focusing is possible via the focusing ring.

The Rollei d530 flex works with an integrated TTL-controlled electronic flash unit. Four flash modes ensure that the subject is always correctly illuminated: auto, fill-in flash - both with or without red-eye reduction - manual and flash off. Its range is 0.6 - 3 metres. The d530 flex has a hot shoe with TTL control for the Rollei f28 system flash. All other shoe-mounted flash units and flash equipment can be controlled via the hot-shoe contact or X-cable adapter.

The camera is powered by 6 rechargeable AA batteries or alkaline batteries.

As the five million pixel raw data of the Rollei d530 flex digital camera offer a big storage volume it is advantageous to use a USB-Offline connection via a USB-card reader. With this method the data which is stored on the memory card inside the camera is transferred via the USB-card reader directly to the PC or Mac, so that there is no waiting time. The big advantage is that the camera is immediately ready for use again.

Rollei will offer different customer-oriented versions of the Rollei d530 flex.

Rollei d530 flex brief specifications

Sensor 2/3" 5 megapixel CCD
Lens D-VarioApogon, 3x zoom
Lens equiv. focal length 40 - 120 mm equiv.
Lens max. aperture F2.8 - F4.0
Viewfinder Optical reflex viewfinder with micro-lens focusing screen and eyesight compensation
Metering TTL Center-weighted Average
Focusing Phase-comparison auto focus
Minimum focus distance 0.6 m
Manual focus correction Yes, after AF
Exposure control 2 auto programs, 1 manual program
Shutter speed 1 sec to 1/1000 sec (electronic and mechanical)
Image data RAW data (RDC format - 10 bits per pixel) 6.5 MB per exposure
Storage PCMCIA interface (direct or CF/SM via adapter)
Monitor 2.5" 112,000 pixel
Flash Pop-up, TTLcontrolled
Flash guide no. 12 (ISO 100 / 21°)
Flash modes Auto,fill-in,flash off, hotshoe for Rollei system flash f28 with TTL control
External flash Hot-shoe
Self-timer 2 or 10 seconds
PC Connection Camera interface for direct data transfer and remote control operation for connection to PC or Apple Macintosh
Power 6 rechargeable AA batteries or alkaline batteries (1.5 V)
1 lithium battery type SR 44 or 357 for data buffering the date/time
Other connections DC-IN, Video-out
Dimensions 151 x 102 x 106 mm
Weight (no batt.) Approx.650 g