The nr1 compact (4mpixel +) camera

Started Nov 18, 2003 | Discussions thread
Jim Cockfield Forum Pro • Posts: 16,342
Minolta DiMAGE G500/Konica Revio KD-510z

Sjoerd Westerterp wrote:

I look for:

  • compact. Must fit in a jacket pocket.

I highly recommend the Minolta DiMAGE G500.

This model was released in Japan at the end of June as the Konica Revio KD-510z. I had one in my hands 2 weeks later (I specifically looked for a Japanese model, since I knew it would take a while before it hit the U.S.).

Konica-Minolta decided to release this camera under the Minolta logo as the DiMAGE G500 in the U.S. They are identical except for the logo and model number.

The Minolta DiMAGE G500 (a.k.a., Konica Revio KD-510z) is 94 x 56 x 30 mm (3.7 x 2.2 x 1.2 inches)

I carry mine with me everywhere in a pocket (usually in my pants pocket), but it will also fit fine in a shirt pocket, jacket pocket -- almost any pocket.

  • good low-light response (party pics!)

Better in low light than any camera I've owned to date (and it's my 7th Digital Camera).

See some comments on low light focus here from both myself, and forum poster Tom Crip, in a thread titled "Shocking, G500 outperforms the 7i"

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1024&message=6607017

  • a good 'autopilot', so the girls I hand the cam can take a fair

shot too

Great metering, and the default photos look fantastic (without the need to mess with any of the settings). Here's a comment from someone that owned the F300, and needed a replacement camera. I suggested that he try the G500 instead.

"I did what you mentioned. I got the G500 for a couple of days, used it, and loved it. Compared to the F300, it's faster, the photos have a greater range of tones, it's sturdier and easier to use. I've even played with a few of the images with Photoshop Elements, and the enhanced version I create still is outmatched by the original.--which really surprised me. Thanks for the great information, and for leading me to the details on how to customize the menu options.

Ken"

See the posts from user 1574kc in this thread at megapixel.net:

http://www.megapixel.net/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=8536

  • reasonably good battery life

I've had this camera since mid-July, and I've taken well over 100 photos (mostly with flash) on many occassions, and I've only "run out of juice" once with it (at a weekend long party, where I had taken close to 200 photos (with flash, mostly at night outside).

BTW, you can find Generic 850mAh Lithium Ion Batteries on Ebay for $10.20 - see this post:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1024&message=6632339

  • better than average pic quality

I love the photo quality. Also, see this thread, where I quoted forum poster Nyugen (who owns both the Canon S400, and the Konica KD-510z, which is identical to the Minolta DiMAGE G500, except for the logo). I also included links to his posts about the differences:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1018&message=5851793

Also, see this post from forum poster Adam (who has owned the Canon S400, Konica KD-400z, KD-500z, and new Minolta G500 (Konica KD-510z):

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/read.asp?forum=1024&message=6277866

  • quick write-to-memory (or a no-lockup buffer)

You can set continuous mode under the custom menu (and leave it turned on at all times -- I've never accidently taken more than one photo this way). With this setting, the camera will take one photo every 1.27 seconds until the memory cards are full, simply by holding down the shutter button. No buffers to fill up, no switching to a special burst mode, etc.

With flash indoors, I've clocked it at one photo every 2.1 seconds, simply by holding down the shutter button, INCLUDING FLASH RECYCLE TIME at closer ranges of 3 to 4 feet. This model "throttles" down the flash nicely at closer ranges (which also speeds up recycle times). I love it (but it drives my wife nuts, when I press and hold the shutter button, snapping off multiple flash photos from across the table at restaurants).

It's really a great flash design -- throttling down the flash nicely to prevent overexposure at arms length, with enough strength to get well exposed photos at 14-16 feet away at ISO 200 at full wide angle (MUCH better than most subcompact models). Note: at further distances, the flash can take as long as 4 or 5 seconds to recharge, but this is the exception, not the norm. At closer ranges, recharge time is MUCH faster.

  • fair build quality

Extremely well made camera -- there is nothing "flimsy" about it. Check one out at your local dealer.

It's asking a lot I know.... But maybe someone knows....

Well, no camera is perfect, and don't expect it to rival your Fuji SLR. However, I think it's got the best balance of physical size, user control of parameters used most often, flash range, speed of operation, and image quality out of any subcompact model -- with photos that can match or exceed much larger cameras.

You may also want to visit my Pbase.com Konica Album. You'll see posts from some users of this model, commenting on it in the forum (underneath the photos on the main album page). You'll also find links to my user review.
--
JimC
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http://www.pbase.com/jcockfield/konica_kd510z

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