07-03-2005, 07:00 PM #1
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Gateway Photo Jukebox Review, Digital Camera Round Up at WSJ, Olympus C-315 Announced
Gateway 6GB MP3 Photo Jukebox Review
The 6GB Gateway MP3 Photo Jukebox is a very thin and lightweight Photo & MP3 player that connects to many digital cameras to allow the transfer of images to its 6GB internal hard drive. Once the images are uploaded to the Gateway MP3 Photo Jukebox, you can then format and re-use your digital camera memory to capture more photographs. While Gateway is not alone in this growing field of portable photo storage devices, its relatively low price, small size and feather like weight (3.5 ounces) could make it a viable option. Read the review to find out more.
Recent Camera Round-Up at the Wall Street Journal
Walt Mossberg has written an article, over at the Wall Street Journal, about his picks from a pool of some of the latest and greatest point and shoot cameras. He looked at the Fujifilm Finepix Z1, the Nikon Coolpix S1, the Canon Powershot SD500, Kodak Easyshare V550, and the Konica Minolta Dimage X60.
One of his first criteria for thinning down the pack was the presence of an optical viewfinder. Only the Canon and Kodak have viewfinders (in this field of cameras), leading to his recommendation of those two models. All of the cameras had good image quality, but Mossberg places a lot of importance on the optical viewfinder. Below is a short summary of his points on each camera.
Canon Powershot SD500
- Thicker and heavier than all the rest
- Quick start-up
- Nice mode dial
- A bit noisier than the Nikon
Kodak Easyshare V550
- Preproduction unit was a bit slow to start up, supposedly production models will be faster.
- Larger screen *and* optical viewfinder
- Impressive screen
Konica Minolta Dimage X60
- Simple user interface
- Larger screen, smaller buttons
- No optical viewfinder
Fujifilm Finepix Z1
- Nice look
- Slimmest of this pool
- Good use of indicator lights
Nikon Coolpix S1
- Impressive D-Lighting feature (improve lighting of the image after it's taken)
- Buttons on back tough to operate
- Quit operation (especially on start up)
Olympus C-315 Announced
Olympus has announced the entry level C-315 that, as far as we can tell, won't be available in the US.
London, 1st July 2005 - The new Olympus C-315 Zoom is a stylish and attractively priced camera. Building on the success of its predecessor the C-310Z, pronounced Best Digital Budget Compact Camera' by TIPA in 2004, the new Olympus C-315Z boasts the same special blend of design, performance, handling and affordability. It's resolution has also been significantly increased to 5.1 million pixels to provide exceptional picture quality but what won't ibe changing is the camera's great value for money.
Available from the end of July, the Olympus C-315Z comes highly recommended for first-time digital camera buyers and all those who are budget conscious yet still demand high-quality results.
The C-315Z is designed to make digital photography accessible and affordable for ambitious beginners. Its predecessor's winning combination of ease-of-use and high-quality has now been crowned with the additional advantage of 5.1 million pixels, enabling large print-outs and detailed image cropping. The new resolution complements other features, such as a bright 2.8x optical zoom lens, together with the 3.5x digital zoom brilliant close-ups are possible. The C-315Z also offers a Super Macro mode, enabling successful shots from as close as 2cm from the subject. Five automatic scene programmes are available to help compose the best image and provide added convenience and for those valuing even greater versatility, a movie recording function has been added so movies can be recorded and conveniently reviewed on the camera's integrated 4.6cm LCD.
As you would expect from a user-friendly camera, the C-315Z supports PictBridge, removing the need for a PC to print from the camera. Just connect straight to a compatible printer, such as the Olympus P-10, to instantly print glossy photographs. Alternatively, effortless, one-touch printing is also possible with printers that incorporate ImageLink print system. Images are saved onto removable xD memory cards (a 16MB card is supplied with the camera but these small, fast and durable cards are now available in capacities of up to 1GB). For users without printer access or those on the move, xD cards can also easily be taken to any photo dealer to obtain first-class prints.
Olympus C-315Z -- main features:
- 5.1 million pixels
- 2.8x optical zoom (equiv. 38-106mm on a 35mm camera), 1:3.0-5.0
- Super Macro mode: shooting from as close as 2cm
- 5 scene programmes (Portrait, Self Portrait, Night Scene, Landscape, Landscape with Portrait)
- Movie recording function
- TruePic TURBO image processor
- PictBridge & ImageLink support
- 4.6cm/1.8" LCD with multi-language menu
- Olympus Master software for easy file handling and editing provided
07-04-2005, 07:51 AM #2
I love how Walt takes something that's personal preference and completely rules out a bunch of cameras as a result. I place zero value on an optical viewfinder. Ultra compacts just aren't using viewfinders any longer.
07-05-2005, 11:43 AM #3
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Re: Gateway Photo Jukebox Review, Digital Camera Round Up at WSJ, Olympus C-315 AnnouOriginally Posted by Brian
1) Low light. Even the best LCD's can't nearly pick up on the same things that your eye/OV can pick up in a low light situation. Now I know what you are thinking. You are thinking "Who the heck would use an ultracompact in low light?" Dinner parties at restaurants immediately come to mind.
2) Outdoors in bright light. Some LCD's perform acceptably outdoors. Others don't. If they don't what are you going to do? You're in a jam.
My point is this. If anything, optical viewfinders can AT LEAST act as backups to the LCD in situations where the LCD simply can't do the job. And there's really no excused for omitting one either because they take up close to no room. Look at the how the SD series does it. Takes up a couple mm. If these companies think they're so good being able to design cameras with LCD's that almost take up 100% of the back of the camera, I am confident that they could easily place in a viewfinder too with little extra trouble.
07-05-2005, 12:01 PM #4
Re: Gateway Photo Jukebox Review, Digital Camera Round Up at WSJ, Olympus C-315 Annou
I just think companies like Sony feel that with a good LCD, like theirs is, the optical isn't used by enough people to make it worthwhile. I agree with your points though, I just don't feel you can rule out an entire group of cameras over something like this.
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