From the monthly archives: "April 2009"

Kodak C1013This week the Kodak Easyshare C1013 is on special offer at £54 (was £59) – with a 10 megapixel sensor, 3x optical zoom lens, and 2.4″ screen it seems like a good deal, here’s some of the other best sellers on Amazon UK this week:

1 – Kodak Easyshare C1013 – cheapest branded camera, only £54.99
2 – Nikon D40 DSLR – 6mp, kit lens, cheapest DSLR on Amazon
3 – Canon IXUS 85 IS – Ultra compact, 10mp, 3x zoom
4 – Canon Powershot G10 – 14.7mp, 5x optical zoom, 3″ screen
5 – Sony Alpha A200 DSLR – 10mp, kit lens, 2nd cheapest DSLR

Ricoh CX1Ricoh have launched a new website: it’s all about the new Ricoh CX1 and lets you win a camera on the site. The CX1 is an update to the Ricoh R10 – it features a 9 megapixel CMOS sensor which allows high speed shooting at 4fps, enhanced dynamic range, and features a 28mm wide angle 7.1x optical zoom lens, high resolution 3″ screen, ISO1600, VGA videos, and is available in silver, black or pink for £289.

“Recognizing the need to provide a source of key information for both channel and consumers, Ricoh have invested in the development of a website specifically to promote the CX1. The CX1, launched in February 2009, features a super high quality CMOS sensor, high Dynamic Range and includes the new Double Range Double shot mode.”

Read our Ricoh CX1 Review
View our Ricoh CX1 Sample Photo Gallery

Panasonic FX40We’ve just published our review of the new Panasonic Lumix FX40 / FX48 – it features a 25mm Ultra Wide-angle 5x Optical Zoom lens with optical image stabilisation, 2.5″ screen, 12 megapixel sensor, HD video (720p, 30fps), HD Output, and intelligent auto mode. It’s available in silver, red and black for £249, and takes SD memory cards.

“Panasonic have taken an already winning formula, and tweaked it, with more megapixels, all packed into the same ultra compact and stylish body. Even with more pixels, image quality is still excellent, and noise is average, with very good detail.”

Read our Panasonic Lumix FX40 Review
View Panasonic Lumix FX40 Sample Photos

Digital Camera Memory Cards

Memory cards are an essential purchase for a digital camera. Unfortunately, choosing the right memory card isn’t always easy especially as there’s more choice than ever. This guide will let you know what options you have when choosing a memory card, and help point you in the right direction. Thankfully memory cards are now cheaper than ever, with 8gb memory cards available for less than £5, meaning you can fit not just hundreds, but thousands of photos on the card! Updated Oct 2012.

Click here to read our Guide to Digital Camera Memory Cards.

What size? – As a very rough guide a 1gb (1000mb) memory card will fit around 250 photos with todays 8 – 12 megapixel cameras. So a good size memory card to go for is a 4gb or 8gb memory card as this should allow over 1000 – 2000 high quality photos to be taken. If you plan on using the video features of your camera then it’s a good idea to buy an even larger and faster memory card. For more details on how many photos will fit on a memory card click here.

SanDisk plus USBSD cards – come in three main flavours SD (2gb or less), SDHC (4gb to 32gb), and SDXC (64gb or more). SD cards are used by nearly every single digital camera in the world (excluding some DSLRs). These come in various different prices, from the more basic models, to Sandisk Ultra, and Sandisk Extreme. I would recommend Ultra or Extreme, these tend to support higher writing speeds needed by some cameras for HD video recording. Check the type and class when buying. Older cameras may not support SDHC or SDXC cards, so check the manual before purchase. SD Cards at Amazon: 1GB, 2GB. SDHC Cards at Amazon: 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, 32GB.

SanDisk plus USBSandisk PLUS USB – In my opinion, these are the best memory cards you can get. They work just like a regular SD card, but when you want to view the images on your PC, you can fold it in half, and plug it straight into a USB socket. They also work as USB Pen Drives, and can fit in your wallet. SanDisk have foolishly discontinued these, so buy them while they’re still available! SDHC Cards with USB at Amazon: 4GB Sandisk Plus USB.

Nb. SD Card Speeds note the small number 4 with a semi-circle around it on these SD cards, and the small number 2 on the MicroSD card. This is the speed rating (class) of the card, the higher the number the quicker the card. This is of particular importance to people who want to record HD video with digital cameras such as the Panasonic Lumix series, and class 6 or higher is recommended.

SanDisk MicroSDMicroSD – these are another option, they often come with a MicroSD to SD adapter so they can be used in every SD camera. They also have the added bonus of working with some Olympus cameras (using the MicroSD to XD adapter) so you can use large 8gb cards with Olympus cameras. Sandisk also sell a MicroSD / Sony M2 to USB stick adapter (details below), so you can have quick access to the memory stick via USB. The only problem I’ve found with MicroSD when used in SD adapters is that the fit isn’t very tight, and they can slip out when knocked (and this could cause problems when using the card in a camera). MicroSD is used by most mobile phones. These come as MicroSD and MicroSDHC with older phones and cameras not supporting SDHC so please check before purchasing. MicroSD Cards at Amazon: 1GB, 2GB. MicroSDHC Cards at Amazon: 4gb, 8gb, 16gb

Nb.For more information on SD, SDHC, and MicroSD cards, have a look at the Secure Digital Card page on Wikipedia.

Compact FlashCompact Flash (CF) – invented by SanDisk, and used in most Digital SLRs. However, increasingly with entry level DSLRs, CF is often being replaced by SD cards. Compact flash cards are physically larger than other memory cards, often more expensive, and have for a long time offered the highest capacity, however more recently SD cards have been catching up in capacity offered. More information on Compact Flash cards at Wikipedia. Compact Flash Cards at Amazon: 2gb, 4gb, 8gb, 16gb, 32gb.

Olympus XD CardXD Cards – these were used by Fujifilm and Olympus – Fujifilm and Olympus now support SD cards, with their latest cameras. The maximum size XD cards go up to is 2gb and they are very slow compared to SD cards. Olympus started supplying MicroSD card adapters (MASD-1, pictured here), so you may as well buy MicroSD instead if your camera will take the adapter. The only possible reason for using XD cards is because Olympus enable the panoramic mode in their camera’s with Olympus branded XD cards. If you have a Fuji camera, like the FinePix F100fd, that supports both XD and SD, then switch to SD as write times will be much quicker and there will be less of a delay between photos. For more information on XD cards, there is a great article on Olympus XD Cards at Amazon: 1gb Type M+, 2gb Type M+.

Sony Memory Stick Pro DuoSony Memory Stick Pro Duo – used exclusively by Sony in Sony cameras, PSP etc, this format is quick (like SD cards), supports large sizes (like SD cards), is slightly smaller than SD, but often costs two to three times as much as SD cards. I guess one benefit of Sony Memory Sticks is that it keeps things fairly simple, if you own an old Sony digital camera, you need a Sony memory stick. With Sony’s latest cameras, they now support both Sony and SD/SDHC memory cards, so for these reasons, if your camera supports it, it would be better to buy an SD/SDHC card. More information on Sony Memory Sticks can be found on Wikipedia. Sony Memory Stick Pro Duo cards at Amazon: 2gb, 4gb, 8gb, 16gb.

Sony Memory Stick Pro DuoSandisk MicroSD / Sony M2 to USB stick adapter – this USB card reader lets you have quick access to the MicroSD or Sony M2 memory stick via USB. It’s very small and fits on your keyring. It’s available from Amazon UK: SanDisk MobileMate Micro Memory Card Reader.

If anyone’s looking for a great USB card reader, then have a look at the Kingston 19 in 1 UDB card reader, it will work with every memory card listed above, and is great if you’re having problems getting photos off your camera and memory card. If anyone’s wondering why I tend to recommend Sandisk – the simple truth is that I’ve used their memory cards with literally hundreds of cameras and never had a problem. They were also involved in the development of SD cards and developed Compact Flash cards, so they should know what they’re doing when it comes to making them!

If you have any hints or tips, or think anything needs adding to this article, please leave a comment below.

This week the Casio Exilim Z100 is on special offer at £99 – with a 10 megapixel sensor, wide angle 4x optical zoom lens, and 2.7″ screen it seems like a good deal, here’s some of the other best sellers on Amazon UK this week:

1 – Nikon D40 DSLR – 6mp, kit lens, cheapest DSLR on Amazon
2 – Canon IXUS 85 IS – Ultra compact, 10mp, 3x zoom
3 – Sony Alpha A200 DSLR – 10mp, kit lens, 2nd cheapest DSLR
4 – Panasonic Lumix TZ6 – 10mp, 12x optical zoom, new pocket zoom
5 – Kodak Easyshare C1013 – cheapest branded camera, only £59

Panasonic FT1

We had a look at the new Panasonic Lumix FT1 at the Gadget Show Live – the FT1 is a Water Proof 3.0m, Shock Proof 1.5m and Dust Proof camera it features a 28mm Wide-angle 4.6x Optical Zoom lens, optical image stabilisation, 2.7″ screen, 12 megapixel sensor, HD Motion Pictures and HD Output, and intelligent auto mode. The FT1 is available for £260:

“Catering for those looking for a versatile and durable camera that can confidentially take action shots under pressure, Panasonic is pleased to introduce the DMC-FT1. Tested with the same standards used to assess Panasonic’s acclaimed TOUGHBOOK series computers, the FT1 is shockproof, waterproof and dustproof with the capability to record high-definition movie in AVCHD Lite – the FT1 is streets ahead of its competitors. Featuring a 28mm wide angle lens, 4.6 x optical zoom and iA (Intelligent Auto) mode, this versatile camera lets you capture your special moments on the move.”

Click for more pictures of the Panasonic Lumix FT1.

Panasonic FT1

Nikon D5000Nikon has announced the new Nikon D5000 Digital SLR – it features a 12 megapixel CMOS sensor, 2.7″ live view swivel screen, HD video recording (720p), ISO3200, adaptive D-lighting, dust reduction, 11-point AF and 19 scene modes. It will be available on the 1st of May:

“Nikon’s groundbreaking new D5000 DSLR opens up a new world of high-spec imaging in an incredibly user-friendly format. It’s packed with the type of features you’d expect on a professional DSLR, but with the ease of use that means anyone can enjoy it, from absolute beginners to photo enthusiasts.

The D5000’s unique vari-angle LCD screen lets you shoot from any angle, bringing a totally new perspective to your images. You can even use its innovative HD movie mode to create your own high resolution movie clips. And with a choice of 19 Scene Modes which select the optimum settings for whatever you’re shooting, you’ll always get great results.”

Read Nikon D5000 DSLR Previews: DCResource, DPReview, Imaging Resource, Photography BLOG

Ricoh CX1

We’ve just published our full review of the new Ricoh CX1 – an update to the Ricoh R10 – it features a 9 megapixel CMOS sensor which allows high speed shooting at 4fps, enhanced dynamic range, and features a 28mm wide angle 7.1x optical zoom lens, high resolution 3″ screen, ISO1600, VGA videos, and is available in silver, black or pink for £292.

“The Ricoh CX1 may seem like other Ricoh cameras before it – however the new 9 megapixel CMOS sensor adds some important features – namely extremely quick continuous shooting. With 4fps at full resolution the camera can shoot quicker than most budget Digital SLRs! High speed shooting also allows Ricoh to provide an impressive Dynamic Range mode – this uses the speed of the camera to take two shots of different exposures – combines the two and produces an image with greatly increased dynamic range. The results are quick, clever, and very useful.”

Read our Ricoh CX1 Review
View our Ricoh CX1 Sample Photo Gallery

GE E1040It’s been on my hard drive for about a year and a half, and I never got round to finishing it, but when I looked today, I realised it was only a paragraph away from completion, so I thought I may as well publish it… so here is our (extremetly late, and out of date) review of the GE E1040. The E1040 features a 10 megapixel sensor, a 4x optical zoom lens, a large 3″ screen, digital anti-shake, high ISO settings upto 3200, face detection, 26mb of memory and a 30fps VGA video mode, and has since been replaced by a number of newer and better GE cameras.

“In the middle of 2007, GE (General Imaging) suddenly appeared from nowhere with a full range of digital cameras, inludeding the GE E1040. The GE E1040 is one of GE’s top of the range 10 megapixel digital cameras, and features a 4x optical zoom lens, a large 3″ screen, and face detection focus. The camera has the ability to take photos at upto ISO 3200, has digital anti-shake, panoramic stitching, and red-eye removal.”

Read our GE E1040 Review
View the GE E1040 Sample Photo Gallery