From the monthly archives: "February 2006"

Casio StandCasio had a large stand at the Focus on Imaging show this year, showing their full range of digital cameras, of particular interest were their new digital cameras, announced in the last few days, the new 8 megapixel Casio Exilim EX-Z850, the new Casio Exilim EX-Z60, available in red, black or silver, and the new Casio Exilim EX-Z600, which features a large 2.7″ screen. Click image to view a larger version.

Casio Exilim EX-Z850 Casio Exilim EX-Z60 Red
Casio Exilim EX-Z850 – the compact but capable camera features a steel body, and is an update to the popular Casio Exilim EX-Z750. The new Casio Exilim EX-Z60 is a compact, stylish digital camera, shown in red above.

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Casio Exilim EX-Z60 Black Casio Exilim EX-Z600
Above, left, the Casio Exilim EX-Z60 in black. It has a 2.5″ screen, and a 3x optical zoom lens. On the right is the new Casio Exilim EX-Z600 with large 2.7″ screen, and impressive battery life offering 550 photos!

Cameras.co.uk have reviewed the Olympus FE-110 / Olympus X-705 – it features a 5 megapixel sensor, a 2.8x optical zoom lens, and a 1.5″ screen. It comes with 28mb memory built in plus an extra 16mb card and is available from Amazon for £89 or £95:

“The Olympus FE-110 is an entry-level digital camera. It has five megapixels and a 2.8x optical zoom lens. Its main attractions are its low price and ease of use. The FE-110 is likely to appeal to someone who is looking for a digital camera that they can start taking pictures with as soon as they’ve taken it out the box and loaded the batteries.”

Canon IXUS WirelessDCResource have review the new Canon Digital IXUS Wireless / Powershot SD430 Wireless digital camera. It features a 3x otpical zoom lens, a 5 megapixel sensor, a 2″ screen and wireless connection:

“The Canon PowerShot SD430 Digital ELPH Wireless ($499) has the longest name of any camera I’ve reviewed. It also happens to be Canon’s first PowerShot with built-in Wi-Fi technology, which allows you to send photos to your PC without touching a USB cable. You can transfer photos as they are taken, or later while reviewing them in playback mode. In the future you’ll also be able to send photos from one SD430 to another. Canon also throws in a wireless printer adapter, which allows you to print wirelessly from the SD430 to any PictBridge-enabled photo printer.”

Kodak V570Kodak had a large stand showing their latest digital cameras, digital camera printers, and Kodak printing booths. Here I took a look at the new 5 megapixel Kodak Easyshare V570, and printed a photo from it docked into a Kodak Easyshare Printer. Click images to view a larger version.

Kodak Stand Kodak V570 Front
The Kodak Easyshare V570 is an ultra compact, and unique digital camera with dual lens, and dual 5 megapixel sensors, the camera automatically changes between the lenses as you zoom in or out.

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Kodak V570 Back Kodak Easyshare Printer
On display were Kodak Easyshare Digital cameras docked into suitable Kodak Easyshare Printers – it was very easy to take a picture, dock the camera and then get a print of the photo a few minutes later.

Olympus Mju 720 Beach CameraOlympus were demonstrating their new Olympus Mju series digital cameras, all of the cameras are weatherproof. The 7 megapixel Olympus Mju 700 is available in various colours and is the slimmest, the 8 megapixel Olympus Mju 810 features a metal body, and the slim 7 megapixel Olympus Mju 720SW is waterproof and shockproof. Click picture to view a larger version.

Olympus Mju 720 Front Olympus Mju 720 Back
The Olympus Mju 720SW has a solid metal body with shock resistance and a metal lens cover. On the back is a 2.5″ screen that looks well protected – the camera appeared to have a very good super macro mode. The Olympus Mju 720SW was shown as the ideal beach or swimming digital camera.

Click here for Mju 700 and Mju 810 Pictures and Details.

Olympus Mju 700 in Orange Olympus Mju 810 Front
On the left, the slim wedge shaped Olympus Mju 700 in Orange. The Olympus Mju 810 has a fully metal body, compared to the half-plastic Mju 700, and also features digital “anti-shake” / “image stabilisation” – the camera will take two photos and delete the image with the most blur.

Olympus E-330 BackOlympus were demonstrating their new 7.5 megapixel Olympus EVOLT E-330 Digital SLR with live preview mode, at the Focus on Imaging 2006 show. They were also offering the chance to win a Bentley Continental GT. Olympus had two stands at the show, one with the Bentley, and the other with digital cameras and regular demonstrations. Click images to view a larger version.

Olympus Win A Bentley Liveview in action
Shown above: Bentley Continental GT at one of the Olympus Stands. Liveview in action on the Olympus EVOLT E-330.

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Win a Bentley Win a Bentley
Demonstration of live-view using TV out to display the live view on a TV screen.

Flipscreen E-330 with Macro lens
Flip screen in 4-thumbs playback mode. Olympus Evolt E-330 with Macro lens.

Sandisk were at the Focus on Imaging 2006 show and had a large and impressive stand showing their latest Extreme III and Ultra II memory cards – the Extreme III series is tested to work in extreme conditions, from -25 C to + 85 C, and offers a 10 year warranty in Europe, the Middle-East and Africe, and a lifetime warranty in the rest of the world!

The Sandisk Ultra II SD card plus USB, shown below, left, features a clever folding design that allows the SD card to be plugged straight into a USB slot without adapter. Other products, announced today, were on display including the new Extreme III 8Gb Compact Flash, 4Gb Memory Stick Pro Duo, and 2Gb SD card (available March), the 4Gb Sandisk Ultra II Memory Stick Pro Duo (available March), and the 2Gb Sandisk Ultra II SD Plus USB card (available June).

Sandisk Memory Stick Pro Duo Sandisk Memory Stick Pro Duo
Click images to view a larger version.

Ricoh Focus On Imaging StandRicoh were at the Focus on Imaging Show for the first time this year, showing the new Ricoh Caplio R4, Ricoh GR Digital, and their other digital cameras – the GR Digital seeming the most popular.

While I was there I was able to talk to Ricoh’s national sales manager, where they told me that they are planning to enter the US market, selling Ricoh digital cameras in selected digital camera stores. They intend to provide a list of retailers in the coming weeks. Click image above to view a larger version.

HP Photosmart Pro B9180 Printer
HP announced their new professional A3 photo printer today, it features 8 new seperate pigment ink cartridges, with prints having a 200 year life span. The printer has been announced with new paper, watercolor, canvas etc and has replacable print heads – although I was told that these are designed to last the life time of the printer. The prints come out of the printer dry and waterproof. The RRP is £499 and is expected to be available in June.

Read the full press release, with exclusive photos.

HP Photosmart Pro B9180 Printer
Display

HP Photosmart Pro B9180 Printer
Printer logo

HP Photosmart Pro B9180 Printer
Example print from the printer

Press Release: HP Helps Professional Photographers Stay Ahead Of The Competition – New Versatile Printing System Delivers Professional Quality Prints For Display Or Sale

Birmingham, UK, 26 February, 2006 – HP today announced the launch of its new HP Photosmart Pro B9180 A3+ Photo Printer, designed specifically for professional photographers.

With eight, high capacity individual pigment-based HP Vivera Inks and enhanced media compatibility, this leading printing system allows photographers to be up to 30 percent more productive1, helping them succeed in the increasingly competitive professional photography market.

Magnum photographer Carl Dekeyzer said, “There is no time wasted waiting around for proofs with the HP Photosmart Pro B9180. As well as demonstrating impressive print speeds, the new system delivers prints at an affordable cost per page. The outstanding image quality and the precise and consistent colours allow me to select those images that will be best suited to display or sale.”

Drawing on HP’s heritage in the graphics and commercial printing market, this efficient, powerful new printer produces high quality, instant dry, durable, waterproof prints that resist fading for up to 200 years, a new benchmark in photography.2

The newly designed printing system features HP’s proprietary scalable printing technology for increased productivity, versatility and affordable cost per page, along with eight individual pigment ink cartridges, four two-colour printheads and a range of professional photo and fine art papers. The high-capacity ink cartridges allow professional photographers to print up to 80 A3+ prints or 840 10 x15 cm photos3. In addition, HP Pro print plug-in for Adobe Photoshop, and a host of ICC profiles in the printer software, deliver precise, predictable colour quality, print after print.

Professional quality papers – For photographers without large format printing facilities, producing A3+ prints that meet professional requirements is a challenge. Industry leading HP Advanced Photo Paper solves this problem. Featuring a retail quality finish, in glossy and satin-matt, customers will appreciate the durability of the thick, heavy paper. The paper’s instant dry porous coating allows immediate handling without smudging, helping to create a more productive and efficient studio.

Additionally, new A3+ HP digital fine art papers, based on HP’s professional large format media range, provide photographers with the materials needed to display their work in a gallery. Four types of papers – Watercolour, Aquarella Art, Smooth Fine Art and Artist Matte Canvas – provide professionals with greater choice when printing work for display.

HP Photosmart Pro B9180 Printer

Henry Wilhelm, Wilhelm Imaging Research Inc., (WIR) said, “With WIR Display Permanence Ratings of more than 200 years, prints made with the HP Photosmart Pro B9180 A3+ Photo Printer, Vivera pigment inks, and select HP glossy photo papers and matte fine art papers4 set a new benchmark for overall colour print permanence. When displayed framed under glass, prints made with the new printer, inks, and papers are among the longest-lasting prints in the entire 130-year history of colour photography.

“To put this achievement in perspective, displayed prints made with the HP B9180 and Vivera pigment inks are five times more stable than the best of all current traditional dye-based silver halide colour prints, Fujicolor Crystal Archive prints (WIR rated at 40 years) — and more than ten times longer lasting than Kodak Edge Generations and Royal Generations prints (WIR rated at 19 years).”

Industry leading image quality with HP Vivera Inks – The eight high-capacity HP 38 Pigment Ink Cartridges, with new patented waterproof5 HP Vivera inks, deliver durable life-like colour for professional portraits, landscapes, proofing and fine art prints. The new ink cartridges have been engineered to deliver consistent results with the HP Photosmart Pro B9180 A3+ Photo Printer.

In addition, the four HP 70 dual-colour printheads feature 8,448 nozzles for precise, consistent drop placement, enhanced colour accuracy and prints that will more closely represent the image seen through the lens and on the PC.

HP’s third generation grey ink creates colour as well as black and white prints with smooth transitions from one shade to the next. Neutral tones are consistent, subtle and controlled. Photographers can select from the two types of black inks: photo black for high contrast black and white photos with deep, rich blacks, or matte black for printing onto HP’s range of fine art papers.

For enhanced productivity, photographers can individually replace the printheads and single ink cartridges, which are available in 27ml sizes as required. This will help small studios keep costs in line with usage.

Professional performance and versatility – The HP Photosmart Pro B9180 A3+ Photo Printer delivers ICC profiling options for perfect colour reproduction on a variety of standard and specialised media. Professional photos will look just as they did through the lens or on the calibrated monitor, with precision colour consistency for the highest quality prints. Colour control and accurate photo proofs are also available for a variety of HP and non-HP media as well as digital fine art paper.

Photographers can immediately print their photos and proofs with HP’s fast, professional printing technology without having to rely on a photo lab. Proofs can be printed in less than 2 minutes for A3+ prints and less than ten seconds for 10 x15cm prints, a new speed benchmark6. The printer is perfectly suited to master the most challenging photo printing tasks as well as the everyday printing of documents.

PC, Mac or mixed environments requiring multiple connectivity options can utilise the USB-high speed and Ethernet networking capabilities. Software tools include Adobe Photoshop plug-in and optional raster image processor (RIP) software for professional colour management.

“Designed for professional photographers, the new HP Photosmart Pro B9180 A3+ Photo Printer and specifically developed supplies enable photographers to produce prints of the very highest quality,” said John Duckworth, Consumer Printers Category Manager, HP UK&I. “Its new printing system is ideal for professional and studio usage, providing the tools for photographers to realise their artistic vision.”

The Photosmart Pro B9180 A3+ Photo Printer will be available in June priced at £499 inc VAT (price subject to change)

About HP – HP is a technology solutions provider to consumers, businesses and institutions globally. The company’s offerings span IT infrastructure, global services, business and home computing, and imaging and printing. For the four fiscal quarters ended Jan. 31, 2006, HP revenue totaled $87.9 billion. More information about HP (NYSE, Nasdaq: HPQ) is available at www.hp.com.

1 Based on December 2005 competitive landscape and similarly priced printers, HP internal testing

2 “When displayed framed under glass, prints made with the HP Photosmart Pro B9180 printer, Vivera pigment inks, and select HP papers have WIR Display Permanence and Album/Dark Storage Ratings of more than 200 years and are among the longest-lasting prints in the entire 130-year history of colour photography. Tested HP papers include HP Advanced Photo Paper, HP Hahnemühle® Smooth Fine Art Paper, HP Hahnemühle® Watercolor Paper, and HP Matte Photo Paper.” Henry Wilhelm, www.wilhelm-research.com
3 Preliminary yield estimate: Approximately 80 A3+ prints or 840 10x15cm photos. Actual yield depends on specific use. For tested results by printer, see www.hp.com/go/pageyield
4 Tested HP papers include HP Advanced Photo Paper, HP Hahnemühle® Smooth Fine Art Paper, HP Hahnemühle® Watercolor Paper, and HP Matte Photo Paper. Additional HP papers are also being tested with Vivera pigment inks. For test details visit, www.wilhelm-research.com
5 Waterproof with HP Advanced Photo paper; water resistant with other HP-recommended papers. Based on HP image permanence lab’s comprehensive water resistance testing. Please contact HP for further details.
6 Based upon HP internal testing