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Compact Cameras Add Better Features

LAS VEGAS — Although the continued evolution of the camera phone is reducing the SKU count in many point-and-shoot assortments for 2014, manufacturers are far from abandoning the category.

This year, camera makers are shifting emphasis away from the entry-level point-and-shoot and narrowing their focus on super zooms, models with Wi-Fi connectivity and high-resolution image sensors, which command higher tickets and take better photos than a typical smartphone can.

The following is a glance at some of the new compact camera offerings on tap for International CES/

Canon is introducing three PowerShot cameras: the PowerShot N100, the SX600HS and the Elph 340 HS.

The PowerShot N100 adds a new spin on the “selfie” by allowing the photographer to become part of the image using a Dual Capture mode that simultaneously captures a main image in front of the camera and an image of the photographer on a rear-facing sub-camera in order to embed a picture of the user onto the main image.

In addition, a Story Highlights mode in the camera intuitively creates a highlight reel of images and video and edits each for a customized movie of images that tell a story. The N100 also features a new body style, a 5x optical zoom, a 24mm wide-angle f/1.8 lens, a 12.1-megapixel high-sensitivity CMOS sensor and Canon’s DIGIC 6 image processor.

The PowerShot N100 also has Creative Shot mode for simple artistic shots.

All three new models feature built-in Wi-Fi and, for the first time in the Canon line, nearfield communications (NFC) capability.

The PowerShot SX600 HS combines a small body style and high-quality Canon optics in an 18x optical zoom. Other features include a 16-megapixel highsensitivity CMOS sensor, DIGIG 4+ image processor and Creative Shot mode.

The PowerShot Elph 340 HS replaces the Elph 330 HS and includes 12x optical zoom lens, 16-megapixel high-sensitivity CMOS sensor, DIGIC 4+ processor and Creative Shot mode.

Fujifilm is showing a pair of rugged Fine Pix pointand- shoot digital cameras, and three long-zoom bridge-style cameras.

The Fujifilm FinePix XP70 ($229) is billed as a rugged waterproof (to 33 feet), shock-proof (from 5 feet), freeze-proof (to 14 degrees F) digital camera with a 16-megapixel CMOS high-speed sensor, a 5x (28- 140mm) optical zoom, integrated Wi-Fi connectivity and FullHD 1080 video recording.

The FinePix S1 is billed as “the world’s first weather- resistant super-zoom camera” offering a 16-megapixel CMOS sensor, 50x super telephoto zoom lens (24mm F2.8-1200mm F5.6 35mm equivalent) and 2x intelligent digital zoom extension up to 100x. The S1 includes a vari-angle 3-inch 920K-dot LCD, electronic viewfinder, five axial image stabilization and one-touch Wi-Fi connectivity.

Also on tap are a three super-zoom bridge cameras, including the S9200 ($329) and S9400W ($349). Both models feature 50x F/2.9 super-zoom lenses, FullHD 1080 video recording and super macro focusing. The S9400W adds built-in Wi-Fi capability.

The S8600 ($229) features a 36x F/2.9-6.5 zoom, 16-megapixel resolution, 3-inch LCD, mode dial and face detection.

Kodak PixPro, which is showing products at its suite in the Wynn Encore during CES week, is debuting its new Smart Lens cameras designed for use with smartphone, new top-end super telephoto Astro Zoom bridge cameras, and a waterproof action video camcorder.

The Kodak Smart Lens series are lens-shaped cameras designed to attach to a smartphone via a Wi-Fi or NFC connection to store captured images on the smart device’s memory, bridging the benefits of a DSLR with the portability of a smartphone.

Models include the $199 SL10 with 10x optical zoom, 1080p video and iOS/Android apps; and the $299 SL25, which steps up to a 25x optical zoom.

The Kodak PixPro Astro Zoom AA ($149 suggested retail) features a 36x optical zoom starting at 24mm, a 3-inch LCD and 720p video capture.

The Kodak PixPro Astro Zoom AZ526 ($299) offers a 52x optical zoom, Wi-Fi link, 52mm lens filter compatibility and 1080p video capture.

The Kodak PixPro Astro Zoom AZ651 ($349) offers a 65x optical zoom, 20-megapixel BSI CMOS sensor, 3-inch LCD with tilt and Wi-Fi link.

The Kodak PixPro SPZ1 ($129) digital camcorder will offer a 160-degree ultra-wide-angle lens and is waterproof to 32 feet.

Nikon will look to fuel its growing share of the digital camera market in 2014 by adding value to the point-and-shoot camera space while addressing the mass market with an entry DSLR.

The company is highlighting here the value-priced D3300 DSRL and the long-zoom Coolpix L830 point-and-shoot. Overall, Nikon is showing five new Coolpix camera models, one SLR and two lenses.

The Coolpix L830 packs a 16-mega pixel CMOS sensor with a 44x (22.5- 765mm) optical zoom plus a dynamic fine zoom extension, a sidezoom lever for added stability, a 3-inch Vari-angle LCD, 1080/60i video capture, lens vibration reduction and contrastdetect AF.

Other Coolpix offerings, which start shipping between January and April, include the S6800 (16 megapixels, 12x zoom, 1080/60i video, Wi-Fi); S5300 (16 megapixels, 8x zoom, 1080/60i, Wi-Fi); S3600 (20 megapixels, 8x zoom, target-finding AF, 720p video); and the L30 (20 megapixels, 5x zoom, 720p video).

Polaroid by C&A Marketing is showing a Socialmatic printing camera billed as a hip multifunction imaging device that melds the vintage ’70s Polaroid” instant printing ability (using Zero Ink, Z-ink, technology) with modern features like 14-megapixel resolution, Bluetooth connectivity and the ability to link to social networks via built-in Wi-Fi.

The thin square-shaped Polaroid Socialmatic camera is Android-based with a 4.3-inch touchscreen LCD and LED flash.

Polaroid by Sakar International travels to International CES to unveil five Polaroid super zoom point-and-shoot bridge-style cameras with integrated Wi-Fi support.

All five models capture both high-resolution still images and up to 720p HD videos, are powered by AA batteries, include SD card slots, and have built-in flashes, 3-inch LCD screens and Wi-Fi connectivity.

From there the cameras are distinguished from each other primarily by resolution and zoom range.

Pricing and availability on each model will be announced later.

The highlight of the group is the Polaroid iE5036W, featuring a 50x optical super zoom lens, 18-megapixel image resolution and integrated Wi-Fi instant sharing.

The remaining models break out as follows: The Polaroid iE3035W features a 30x optical super zoom lens and 18-megapixel resolution.

The Polaroid iE3638W features a 36x optical super zoom, 18-megapixel resolution and integrated Wi-Fi sharing.

The Polaroid iE4038 features a 40x optical super zoom lens and Wi-Fi sharing.

And the Polaroid iS1527W includes a 15x optical zoom lens, 16-megapixel resolution and integrated Wi-Fi sharing.

Sony will introduce the DSC-W830 (shipping in February at a $199 suggested retail) high-value point-and-shoot camera with 20.1-megapixel resolution, an 8x optical zoom lens, a 57x VGA smart zoom, 2.7-inch LCD monitor, 720p HD video capture, optical SteadyShot, up to 3,200 ISO light sensitivity and Zeiss optics.