By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Consumers increasingly like their digital cameras like their runway models: impossibly thin. A number of vendors hit the PMA catwalk with ultra-slim models that, unlike their flesh and blood counterparts, owe their diminutive dimensions to advances in miniaturization, not anorexia.
Concord introduced the 3-megapixel 3043, a fixed focal length unit with a 4x digital zoom. It can record movies with sound and will retail for a suggested $99.99. The 3043 is 0.78-inch thick and offers 16MB of internal memory. It will ship in blue, silver or metallic gold.
Casio debuted two new models in its Exilim family of ultra-slim digital cameras. The 5-megapixel EX-Z57 features a 3x optical zoom, a 2.7-inch LCD, 9MB of internal memory, and a business-shot mode, and it ships with a cradle for recharging the camera's batteries and connecting it to a PC. It can record voice clips to add to still images in addition to 320 by 240 movies with sound at 15 frames per second (fps).
The 7-megapixel EX-Z750 features a 3x optical zoom, 2.5-inch LCD, an optical viewfinder, a 400-shot-per-charge battery life (according to CIPA standards), and MPEG-4 video recording at VGA resolution at 30 fps. The camera also offers aperture and shutter priority and a full manual mode.
Casio added a new “best shot” mode — art best shot — which applies art effects to captured images in the camera. The Z750 also offers continuous zoom shooting that takes two different pictures with one press of the shutter. Framing the subject with the LCD screen, a user can take a full resolution image of a scene and also a lower-resolution image of a smaller section of the same scene.
Fujifilm added a model to its Z-series of slim form factor models. The 5-megapixel, all-metal Z1 will ship in June for a suggested $449.95.
The Z1 employs Fujifilm's Super CCD HR and features a non-extending 3x optical zoom lens. The camera's 2.5-inch LCD offers a gain-up feature to improve viewing in brightly lit environments and sports a reinforced glass coating that the company claims is 35 times more scratch resistant than previous screens.
The camera features a start-up time of 0.6 seconds and a 1/100th of a second shutter lag. It is 18.6mm thick and will be available in black or brushed silver.
Olympus added two new components to its Total Imaging Solution product line, including an ultra-slim 5-megapixel camera, and announced pricing information on models announced late last year.
The new additions include the IR-300 digital camera and the S-DVD-100 DVD/CD reader/writer
The compact, 5-megapixel IR-300 measures 0.87-inch thick and features a 2-inch LCD, a 3x optical/4x digital zoom and 19 shooting modes. The camera offers an anti-shake function when using the QuickTime movie mode to reduce the effects of hand motion. A new built-in calendar function automatically organizes and recalls images saved in the camera's xD Picture Card by specific dates.
The IR-300, for an estimated $349.99, will ship in April. It ships with a cradle to connect to other Total Imaging Solution components. The S-DVD-100 DVD Reader/Writer connects to Olympus' IR series cameras to directly burn images onto CDs or DVDs without a PC. It ships in May for an estimated $399.99.
The company will ship previously announced components, the IR-500 digital camera and P-S100 printer, this month for an estimated $349.99 and $199.99, respectively. The S-HD100 hard drive ships in April for a suggested $299.99.
Sony introduced the DSC-T33 measuring in at 0.8 inches thick. The 5-megapixel model offers a 3x optical zoom, a 2.5-inch LCD and VGA MPEG movie capture at 30fps. The T33 features 10 preset scene modes, PictBridge compatibility, a 5-area multipoint AF with an AF illuminator and an automatic macro focusing mode. It will ship in March and include a 32MB Memory Stick Duo card and a Cyber-shot Station USB cradle for an estimated $450
Vivitar announced it will ship its 8-megapixel Vivicam 8300s in the second quarter of the year. The model features a 3x optical/4x digital zoom, macro focusing to 2 inches and several exposure modes. It can record VGA movies at 24fps to the length of a memory card (64MB SD card included). It will carry a $599.95 suggested retail price.
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