Minolta DiMAGE A1 Review
The DiMAGE A1 is the successor to the 'DiMAGE 7' series of digital cameras. Minolta has chosen not to use the '7' name on this camera because they believe it to be such a leap forward in functionality and features. The A1 utilizes the same size CCD and 7x optical zoom lens as the DiMAGE 7(Hi/i) however it is now powered by a dedicated Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery, has a tilting LCD monitor, a grip sensor and most importantly image stabilization (called 'Anti Shake') thanks to a CCD which can move on x and y axis. This innovative approach to image stabilization means that you can use a normal lens system and put all the complexity of shake compensation within the camera body (how effective it is we will only be able to report in a full review).
Minolta DiMAGE A1 vs. DiMAGE 7Hi (differences only)
|Minolta DiMAGE A1||Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi|
|List price||US: $1,199||US: $1,299|
|CCD||2/3" type 5.2 megapixel progressive||2/3" type 5.2 megapixel interlaced|
|Image sizes||2560 x 1920
2080 x 1560
1600 x 1200
640 x 480
|2560 x 1920
1600 x 1200
640 x 480
|A/D converter||14 bit||12 bit|
|Anti-shake||CCD stabilized (can be disabled)||None|
|AF Areas||11 points in Wide area focus mode||3 points in Wide area focus mode|
|Manual focus||2x or 8x magnify||4x magnify|
|Flex Focus Points||124 x 87||15 x 19|
|Noise reduction||Dark frame subtraction for long exposures (can be disabled)||Dark fram subtraction for Bulb exposures|
|Control dials||Two (function can be customized)||One|
|Grip sensor||Triggers AF in full-time AF mode||None|
|Pa/Ps shift||Front dial shifts on aperture
Rear dial shifts on shutter speed
(function of dials can be customized)
|Aperture / Shutter speed combined|
|Apertures||Wide: F2.8 - F11 (13 steps)
Tele: F3.5 - F11 (11 steps)
| Wide: F2.8 - F8 (7 steps)
Tele: F3.5 - F9.5 (7 steps)
|Shutter speeds||30 - 1/16000 sec (58 steps)||15 - 1/2000 sec (31 steps)
(30 sec bulb, 1/4000 sec auto)
|Spot metering||Center or with Flex Focus point||Follows Flex Focus point|
|Bracket steps||0.3, 0.5 EV||0.3, 0.5, 1.0 EV|
|AEL Button||Can be set to AE lock/hold or Spot AE lock/hold||Always Spot meters|
|Full auto mode||Yes||No|
|Exposure mode||On mode dial||Via function dial|
|Record/play||Dedicated switch||On mode dial|
|Power button||On record/play switch||On mode dial|
|Scene modes||On mode dial||Dedicated button|
|Pro-Auto (reset)||No (although now has Auto mode)||Yes|
|Image Params||Filter +/- 5
Contrast +/- 5
Saturation +/- 5
|Filter +/- 3
Contrast +/- 3
Saturation +/- 3
Manual preset 1-3
|One button WB||Yes||No|
|WB Fine Tuning||Daylight, Tungsten, Shade, Cloudy, Flash, Fluorescent can all be fine tuned in 7 steps||No|
|Continuous||High: 2.8 fps, max 3 JPEG frames
Normal: 2 fps, max 3 JPEG frames *
* max 5 frames in RAW mode
|High: 3 fps, max 9 frames
Normal: 2 fps, max 9 frames
UHS: 7 fps @ 1280 x 960
|Movie Clips||320 x 240, 24 fps, max 15 mins||320 x 240, 15 fps, max 60 sec|
|Time-lapse||2 - 240 frames, 30 - 60 mins||2 - 99 frames, 1 - 60 mins|
|Self-timer||2 or 10 sec||10 sec|
|Viewfinder||0 to 90° tilting position
0.44" TFT LCD
|0 to 90° tilting position
4.8 mm Ferroelectric LCD
71,000 24-bit colour pixels
|LCD monitor||-20 to 90° Tilting 1.8"
|Fixed 1.8" TFT LCD
|Playback magnify||2.0 - 8.0x, scrollable||2.0x, 2.5x, 4.0x, scrollable|
|Exif data note||Yes||No|
|Power||NP-400 Lithium-Ion rechargeable
1500 mAh 7.4V
|4 x AA batteries
1850 mAh NiMH included
|Dimensions||117 x 85 x 114 mm (4.6 x 3.4 x 4.5 in)||117 x 91 x 123 mm (4.6 x 3.6 x 4.8 in)|
|Weight (inc batt)||643 g (1.4 lb)||639 g (1.4 lb)|
|Click for a larger image||Click for a movie of the Anti-Shake system in action (exaggerated motion) - 2.1 MB|
The DiMAGE A1 is (as far as I know) the only digital camera to implement image stabilization (Minolta call it 'Anti-Shake') by mounting the CCD sensor on a movable platform controlled by two actuators (x and y axis). The system works by analyzing input from motion detectors in the camera body and producing an inverse movement in the CCD. The system can be disabled (easily by pressing a very prominent button on the rear of the camera) and can also detect a panning movement and only compensate for movement on the opposite axis. Minolta claim that their system enables shutter speeds of 8 times longer (3 stops) than you would be able to manage without it.
The group that provides Canon users with programs to expand the feature set of their cameras has begun cracking the new EOS R mirrorless firmware.
The Pixel 3 represents another step forward in computational photography for Google's smartphone. We're just getting started with our testing – for now take a look at some sample images, including 'computational Raw' files available for download.
Lens Rentals Founder, Roger Cicala, has given the Canon EOS R one of his signature camera teardowns.
Nikon says firmware version 1.03 "Fixes an issue that in rare circumstances would delay the shutter release or the start of the autofocus operation."
The Kickstarter campaign for Yashica’s digiFilm Y35 camera has produced a wave of complaints about delays in shipping product as well as cameras that don’t work.
Pixelmator today released Pixelmator Pro 1.2 Quicksilver, a major update to its image editing app for Mac.
Although Raw performance of the EOS R is very similar to the 5D Mark IV, Canon's done some tweaking on the JPEGs - take a look at our studio scene to see for yourself.
If you've backed one of the company's crowdfunding projects, the reward will not arrive and you won't get your money back either as Meyer Optik Görlitz's parent company, Net SE, is completely dead.
The importance of APS-C, a future a7S model in development and why customers want two card slots – read our full interview with Sony's Kenji Tanaka.
Google's Super Res Zoom technology uses pixel-shifting methods to achieve zoom results comparable to some optical solutions. Google has published an in-depth explanation on its AI blog.
CyberLink has release the latest version of its photo editing and design program PhotoDirector.
Toy manufacturer Tomy has launched a no-battery-required smartphone printer that is remarkably like the one Holga has been promoting via a Kickstarter campaign but which is already available for $40/£39.
A handful of Sony users have noticed a particular model of SanDisk SD cards is showing errors when used with Sony a7 III camera.
The Fujifilm X-T3's 4K video more than lives up to its impressive specification, making it one of the most capable video cameras we've ever tested.
VSCO has made it easier to find the right presets for your photos with a few interface changes to its smartphone app.
TinyMOS is back with NANO1, an all-new astrophotography camera that's one-third the size of the TINY1 it announced three years ago.
Huawei's latest flagship device comes with the widest range of focal lengths of all current smartphones.
After shaking up the Lightroom ecosystem with Lightroom CC last year, Adobe has released version 2.0 of the cloud-centric photo organizer and editor. We look at new features like People View, how far Lightroom CC has come in its first year, and where Lightroom is headed.
Today, at Adobe MAX 2018, Adobe previewed Photoshop CC on iPad, a full-featured, desktop-class version of Photoshop for iOS.
The weather and has most definitely taken a turn toward fall here, and our shooting opportunities have followed suit. We brought the Canon RF 35mm F1.8 along to a harvest festival of sorts and a few of our usual haunts.
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has signed House Bill 1346 into effect, which imposes a fine upwards of $300 to drone operators who invade the privacy or harm the physical wellbeing of citizens.
Sigma is a company in flux, but CEO Kazuto Yamaki is undaunted by the upcoming prospect of developing lenses for eight lens mounts. The challenge will be keeping the company's identity along the way.
If you've been meaning to convert all of your old photos, video, and audio to digital formats, but simply lack the time or willpower to get through it all, a new service from Kodak will help you get the job done.
Almost all new cameras include impressive video features, but for the best results you'll often need an off-camera recorder. Chris and Jordan take a look at the brand new Ninja V from Atomos, and explain why it might just be one of the most useful tools you can add to your camera.
Collect allows you to transform 360-degree into a more easily digestible format by transforming it into directed traditional videos.
Sick of using your plain ol' keyboard to edit your photos in Lightroom and Photoshop? TourBox is hoping to expedite your post-production workflow using a clever combination of dials, buttons, and knobs.
Bag and accessory manufacturer Hex has launched two bags as part of its latest collection: the Clamshell Backpack and DSLR Sling.
Crank out instant photos with Holga Digital's new analog printer, currently being funded on Kickstarter.
We got some hands-on time with Leica's new S3 medium format camera, which boasts a new higher-res sensor as well as other improvements.