New cameras do more than you would expect
While the biggest photography news—especially in pro and semi-pro gear--will come later this month at the PMA show, several big camera makers are unleashing new models that redefine expectations of what a point-and-shoots can do.
The showstopper is certainly Casio’s Exilim EX-F1 supercam. With a smokin’ processor and a boatload of high-speed buffer memory, this $1000 prosumer model can shoot 60 six-megapixel still photos per second or from 300 to 1200 frames of video per second.
Casio also brought out the EX-S10—what they say is the world’s skinniest 10-megapixel camera (at least for this week.) Other claims to fame: high-contrast image captures of up to 1000:1 and “auto shutter” which automatically snaps a picture when the camera and subject are steady so the photo won’t be blurry.
For more camera highlights, continue on below.
Kodak brought out three new models—all with a new suite of features called Smart Capture that basically take the pictures for you. The elements include face detection, digital image stabilization, auto activation of fill flash (to kill shadows on faces) and auto selection of light sensitivity (ISO) and scene mode. The cameras also auto-apply Kodak’s perfect touch technology, which tweaks contrast and color of the photos.
In addition, all three cameras can capture high-def (720p) video – a capability Kodak first brought to point-and-shoots a few months ago in the V1253 model.
On top of all that, each camera has its own claim to fame. The M1003 is a 10-megapixel model for just $199. The V1273 ($299) has a three-inch touchscreen for editing photos on the camera. And the 10-megapixel, 12X optical zoom Z1085 IS ($329) shoots in near blackness at a light sensitivity of ISO 4000. (Most point and shoots stop somewhere between ISO 800 and ISO 1600.)
Samsung easily wins the numbers game with ten new models. Here are highlights.
Probably the coolest, the NV24 HD ($349) follows Kodak’s lead by
bringing HD (720p) video recording, plus a dock that plugs into
high-def TVs. And if the set is a Samsung, you can control the camera
using the TVs remote control. This 10-megapixel shooter has an
ultrawide zoom lens (starting at 24 millimeters), ISO 3200 light
sensitivity, optical image stabilization and Samsung’s new
self-portrait mode that won’t snap your pick until you are centered in
The 8.1 mega-pixel NV30 and 10 mega-pixel NV40 models have many similar features but lack the HD recording and wide-angle lens.
Samsung’s other models are less revolutionary. It brings out two slim cameras, the NV4 and i8 ($279 and $299), that include the company’s portable media player features – letting you use the camera as a music and video player and set up music-accompanied slide shows of your photos. The L100, L110 and L210 ($199-$269) are traditional-looking cameras that include multimedia slide show, self-portrait mode and an LCD that brightens or dims based on the lighting conditions it’s in.
Kodak introduced two digital photo frames (including one that lets you beam pictures to it over Wi-Fi) in what might have once been considered a large size—10 inches diagonal. But that hardly compares to the 32-inch (1080p resolution) digital frame that Smartparts introduced last week. Shame the $899 thing can’t also work as a TV. While it can play video from memory cards, it doesn’t have any video inputs for a cable box or DVD player.
Smartpants also brought out a $279 frame with a built-in printer. Um, I guess if you have the cutest granddaughters in the world, visitors to the home might demand photo copies on the spot--Sean Captain
Want more? Check out our entire CES 2008 coverage here.