Digital Home Thoughts - News & Reviews for the Digital Home

Be sure to register in our forums and post your comments - we want to hear from you!

Zune Thoughts

Loading feed...

Apple Thoughts

Loading feed...

Laptop Thoughts

Loading feed...

All posts tagged "digital camera"

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Toshiba Camileo S10 Seen In The Wild

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 05:30 PM

"It's been a while since we first caught wind of the mysterious Toshiba Camileo S10, but the pocket camcorder has finally broken loose, and it's looking like a pretty solid competitor to the Flip Mino HD and the Kodak Zi6 -- it amps up the video resolution to 1080p and also takes five megapixel stills."

The ultra-portable camcorder market is about to get more crowded with the Toshiba Camileo S10. The Camileo brings 1080p video recording to the game and at an estimated base price of $181, it sounds like it will fly off the shelves. Well, along with a large supply of SD cards since the Camileo has only 128MB of built in memory. Short of some supreme software interface, I don't see this setting itself apart from the competition though. So thos of you who already have a Flip Mino HD, your purchase is still sound. I would really love to see one of these mini camcorders come with optical zoom and large enough internal memory to store more than half a thought, but one step at a time!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Nikon D3X Reviewed: What Can $8,000 Buy You?

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 06:00 PM

"Ever since the simultaneous announcement of the Nikon D1H and D1X back in 2001 Nikon's professional D 'single digit' series has been split into two - the X series designed for high resolution applications such as fashion or landscape photography and the H series for high speed sports type photography (lower resolution but faster continuous shooting). When the Nikon D3 was announced in August 2007 it did not carry an 'H' in its name but was clearly designed for speed. So the question wasn't if, but when, Nikon would launch a high-resolution counterpart. It arrived, after more than a year of eager anticipation, in the shape of the Nikon D3X in December 2008."

The review is in and the Nikon D3X is everything it was expected to be. gives the camera its vaunted Highly Recommended tag. And, Luminous Landscape says "that by just about any measure (except price) this is the most outstanding 35mm format DSLR yet. Build quality, image quality - you name it." But the drawback is that it costs $8,000 USD. For that reason, I can only see a well-heeled professional studio photographer buying one. Most amateurs would be better served buying a Nikon D700 as it does low light better. But if you want the best, here it is. Click the read link for the full review.

New Panasonic Micro Four Thirds Shoots HD Video

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 04:30 PM

"Five months after the launch of the Lumix DMC-G1 Micro Four Thirds camera, Panasonic has unveiled an HD version of the same in the shape of the Lumix DMC-GH1. The 12.1 megapixel camera's Live MOS sensor can record up to 1080/24p or 720/60p high definition videos, with continuous AF and a built-in Dolby Digital Stereo Creator for quality sound recording. This is further supported by Panasonic's designed-for-video Lumix G Vario HD 14-140mm lens, which is also announced today. The camera includes a new Face Recognition feature that remembers individual faces, and offers four different aspect ratios with the same angle of view using a system similar to that in the company's DMC-LX3 compact."

Last month, we wrote about the Panasonic GH Micro Four Thirds Camera system. Now, Panasonic has announced a GH1 that incorporates high definition video recording with stereo sound. Plus, Panasonic released a new 10X zoom lens that was specifically designed for the HD video mode. Click the link to find out more!

Megapixel Race May Finally Be Over

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 02:00 PM

"Megapixels are the digital camera market's equivalent of horsepower and megahertz—a single metric that consumers and marketers latch on to tenaciously, despite the fact that it hardly describes overall performance. Over the last several years, camera manufacturers have been pumping up the megapixels on each successive camera model, regardless of whether such increases offered any real benefits (hint: they usually did not)."

Manufacturers have always had the tough challenge of benchmarking or rating electronics. With CPUs you have Mhz/Ghz, with TVs you have resolution (and contrast ratio, and response time and brightness) and with cameras you have megapixels. All these ratings fall short of considering everything that's important in electronics. Fortunately, it seems that cameras have hit such a plateau that megapixels won't mean much anymore. Of course, camera manufacturers will probably switch to other simplistic numbers to promote their wares but at least we won't see ads for 250 megapixel cameras that come with a free 256mb SD card. Olyumpus seems to think that 12 megapixels should be enough to satisfy all but the most discrinimating photog. Ars Technica thinks 6 should be more than adequate for most people. Being largely unbitten by the bug, I hit my comfort zone at 4. I just hope that they'll now focus more on improved colour reproduction, less distortion and good performance under low light conditions. Yes, high end, and even prosumer cameras can do that, but I'm waiting for then them to do that with camera phones. Now I'll go hang my head in shame for revealing just how casual a photographer I am.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Canon's SX1 IS with Full HD Video

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 03:00 PM

"Canon has unveiled nearly a dozen digital cameras bound for the US ahead of March's PMA. Of the ten, the big guy is that 10 megapixel SX1 IS we originally heard about last September, which sports 1080p Full HD movie mode and a built-in HDMI connector."

The Canon PowerShot SX1 IS is a 10 megapixel, 20x zoom, image stabilized pocket camera that shoots full 1080p video! This camera has a lot of features I like beyond the incredible 1080p video. This camera will shoot in RAW mode, has full manual controls, a wide angle lens (28MM) and will shoot 4 frames per second. Plus, the rear screen swivels. I can't wait for the reviews to come in!

Canon's SX110 IS: A Pocket Shooter with HD Video

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 01:00 PM

"The Canon Powershot SX100 IS was almost the perfect pocket camera - it had almost everything you might possibly want from a camera, and managed to just fit in your pocket! The SX110 IS improves on the SX100 with higher resolution, smaller less bulky body, new 3" screen, and better layout of controls, all for roughly the same price. Unfortunately the camera is still missing a wide angle lens, HD video, suffers from purple fringing, and high noise."

The link is to the full review of the Canon PowerShot SX110. While an admirable pocket camera, I find its high ISO photos just too noisy. Plus, I think it will be hard to sell digital cameras now that don't have at least 720P video mode. Check out the link for the full review!

Nikon Coolpix P6000 Reviewed

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 11:00 AM

"The Coolpix P6000 ($499) is the flagship camera in Nikon's compact digital camera lineup. It features a 13.5 Megapixel CCD, a 4X wide-angle zoom lens, image stabilization, 2.7" LCD display, full manual controls, a hot shoe, and RAW format support. In addition to all that, the P6000 also has two very unique features: a built-in GPS receiver and an Ethernet port."

The link takes you to a detailed review for Nikon's flagship compact digital camera, the Coolpix P6000. The unique feature of this camera is it has GPS built in, allowing you to geotag your photos automatically. But overall, the camera is fairly average. I am impressed that it has a RAW mode and full manual controls, but the photos at ISO 400 and above are way below average. Check out the link for the full review!

Fuji Finepix 200EXR: 3 Shot Modes in One Camera

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 09:00 AM

"Fujifilm has unveiled the FinePix F200EXR digital compact, incorporating its new 1/1.6" Super CCD EXR sensor. The camera is the first to use the company's EXR technology that can use the sensor in three different ways to optimize resolution, dynamic range or low-light performance. The F200EXR has a 3.0" LCD, 5x optical zoom, dual image stabilization and HD (stills) output. An EXR Auto mode lets the camera select which of the three sensor modes is used or the user can make that decision themselves."

The Fuji FinePix F200EXR is more than a typical 12 megapixel, 5x zoom compact camera. The fascinating feature on it is the 1/1.6 inch super CCD sensor that offers 3 separate shooting modes: 1) Fine Capture Mode which gives you 12 megapixels and is designed to offer the most detail when light is ideal; 2) Pixel Fusion Mode which combines two adjacent pixels together to produce 6 megapixels to produce the best low light shots; and 3) Wide Dynamic Range which captures different exposures - each with six megapixels - that are combined to give you a high dynamic range photo. I have seen a few sample photos on the web and they look impressive. Check out the rest of the article for all the details!

Sony's 2009 New Cybershot Cameras

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 05:00 AM

"Sony has decided today would be a good day to unleash five new Cyber-shot digital cameras on the world. From the top we have the ten times optical zoom, image stabilized DSC-H20 which has a ten megapixel CCD. Next we have two twelve megapixel W-series models, the four times zoom W230 and the five times zoom W290. Then come two new slim, twelve megapixel, touch-screen T-models, the T90 and T900, the latter of which demands an $80 premium for its 0.5" larger higher-resolution LCD. All of the models announced today, with one exception (the W230), shoot 720p HD video and have an "Intelligent Auto" mode."

Sony has announced its new digital cameras for the 2009 PMA and there are definitely some cool new features. The two mainstream features are optical image stabilization and 720p high definition video. The more unusual new features include Smile Shutter, which captures an image the moment a smile is detected; Blink detection, where two pictures are taken and one where the eyes are least closed is saved; Intelligent scene recognition (iSCN) that detects the scene and adjusts the camera accordingly and Advanced iSCN that takes two consecutive pictures with different settings, allowing the user to choose the better photo. Check them out!

The New Ricoh CX1 Digital Camera: HDR Built In!

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 02:00 AM

"Ricoh has launched the CX1, a CMOS-based zoom compact camera. The CX1 puts a 9 megapixel CMOS sensor in a R10-like body offering a 28-200mm equivalent zoom range but increasing the screen resolution to 920,000 dots (unusually good for a compact camera). The new sensor allows high-speed continuous shooting (up to 120 frames per second at 640x480 pixel resolution), and has a series of additional technologies to boost dynamic range. The first is a multiple exposure mode that effectively produces in-camera HDR images, the second is a system that uses red and blue data to calculate a green value when the green channel over-exposes."

This new camera has some interesting features that set it apart from other compact cameras. The first is that high dynamic range (HDR) photography is built in. The camera automatically combines two images into one HDR image. The second new feature is that the VGA movie mode takes 120 frames per second! I remember when 15 was the norm and 30 was the high end. Other new features are: a CMOS chip instead of a CCD, a 920,000 pixel screen and a 7X zoom. I can't wait for the sample images.

Sony's Impressive DSC-HX1

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 01:33 AM

"PMA 2009: Sony has today announced a superzoom compact featuring the company's newly-developed high-speed 9 Mp Exmor CMOS sensor. Sporting a 28-480mm (35mm-equivalent) 20x zoom lens, the DSC-HX1 is capable of up to 10 frames per second in burst mode using a high-speed mechanical shutter. The new sensor also enables high definition movie capture up to 1080/30p, with sound captured by a built-in stereo microphone. The specification is rounded off by 'Optical Steady Shot' image stabilization, a 3" LCD, an ISO range up to 3200 and a wide array of scene modes and face detection options. There's also an interesting 'sweep panorama' mode that automatically stitches multiple frames in-camera to give one ultra-wide view."

The camera companies are trying to one-up each other for PMA 2009 and it's working! Today, Sony announced their new flagship compact digital camera, the HX1 and the specs are very impressive: 1080p video, 3" LCD, 3200 ISO, 20X zoom, 28mm wide- angle lens and 10 frames per second. Plus, it has the sweep panorama mode that takes a 224 degree photo. All this for $500. It is a good time to be a consumer!

On Cameras, Lenses Make the Difference

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 01:16 AM

"When most of us talk digital cameras, we talk megapixels, ISO, image noise, shot-per-second speed and image processing. We're tech geeks. But really, none of that stuff matters as much as your camera's lens.The lens is, after all, your camera's eyeball-the image sensor or film can only record what comes in through the lens. It's what defines the picture's perspective, clarity and way more."

This article does a good job of explaining camera lens terminology and why a good, expensive lens takes a much better picture than a cheap lens. It also explains why lens cost so much and why they won't be going down in price any time soon. The thing I liked best, though, was the embedded video on how lenses are made and assembled. That was fascinating!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Nikon D700 vs. the Canon 5D Mark II

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Articles & Resources" @ 02:00 AM

"Both the D700 and the 5D Mark II give you more for your dollar in terms of features, image quality and overall excellence than anything else we've used. Period. We know not everyone is prepared to drop $2,000 to $3,000 on a camera body these days, but if you're thinking of investing for the long haul and, more importantly, have a good collection of either Nikon or Canon lenses, these are the two cameras you want to look at."

This is a very good comparison of the two full frame cameras from Nikon and Canon. And the article gets it exactly right - these are the cameras to own (if you have the cash). The article does a good job of comparing all the features and the sample photos are amazing. Check it out!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

cnet Takes A Snapshot Of Online Photo Editing

Posted by Hooch Tan in "Digital Home News" @ 08:00 PM

"Most of the services on this list take advantage of Adobe's ever-developing Flash platform, which in its latest iteration got a huge boost with support for the large images coming out of today's high-megapixel cameras. On the flip side of that, several of the non-Flash-based editors use AJAX to make the changes happen without reloading the page. The benefit here is that you can run these on machines without the latest versions of Flash installed."

For serious photogs, online photo editing may seem laughable, but there is a large group of people who use cameras in their point-and-click mode all the time. And for us mere mortals, Photoshop, GIMP and their kin are really daunting. That's why there's such a blossoming market for online photo editing. cnet has been kind enough to round up 15 of them and provide vital statistics on each one. Some use HTML, though most use Flash, so they work right in your browser. Each has their own strengths and weaknesses, like live previews of effects you pick, or the ability to use layers, but the great thing is that most of them are free! Be aware though that many of these sites use their editors as a way of promoting other services, like prints, premium services or as a gateway to old school, install on your computer software. Still, for simple editing tasks, these editors fit the bill.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Panasonic's Rugged Little LUMIX DMC-TS1

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 05:53 PM

"Panasonic today introduced the LUMIX DMC-TS1, the world's first waterproof, shockproof and dustproof digital camera to also feature AVCHD Lite High Definition (HD) video recording capabilities. The TS1's tough and rugged design makes it the ideal choice for active users needing the ultimate hybrid for capturing both still and motion images during outdoor activities. The LUMIX TS1, with a 12.1 megapixel resolution, features a 28mm wide-angle LEICA DC VARIO-ELMAR lens, a 4.6x optical zoom and Panasonic's proprietary iA (Intelligent Auto) mode, making this an easy-to-use, yet powerful camera that packs advanced imaging features."

Panasonic announced this a few weeks ago, but after our own Lee Yuan Sheng mentioned it, I decided to take a look at it and create a post because this is an impressive little camera! It looks like the camera the Canon D10 wanted to be - it boasts 720p video capture - and in AVCHD no less (AVCHD Lite = 720p). It has 4.6x optical zoom over the Canon D10'd 3x zoom, and a wider-angled 28mm to the D10's 35mm. The rest is probably a wash, and while I have no idea on image quality yet, the DMC-TS1 looks like it's a worthy competitor. The remainder of the press release is after the break, along with a few more images. Read more...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Canon's New PowerShot SX200 IS

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 11:30 AM

"Creating gorgeous images is more fun than ever with the sleek, impressively equipped PowerShot SX200 IS, elegantly designed in three new colors. Capture close-up, wide-angle shots with stunning 12x optical zoom. Experience the unprecedented image quality and point-and-shoot convenience of Smart AUTO, along with enhanced operability and an intuitive new menu. HD shooting at 1280 x 720 pixels with HDMI output lets you see all the beauty of your HD images and movies on your HDTV."

The stand-out features on the SX200 are the 12x optical zoom, the 720p video capture, and a big three inch screen. The lens also starts at a fairly wide 28mm, giving you decent wide-angle photos, and goes up to an impressive 336mm zoom. The biggest negative? As reader bwaibel shared in another thread, this camera uses a small 1/2.3-inch CCD sensor, which is quite a bit smaller than the 1/1.7 inch sensor that the SD 990 IS uses. It's frustrating that Canon puts buyers in the position of having to chose between image quality or zoom/720p video. I wonder why they couldn't use the bigger sensor? The SX1200 is expected to be available in March for an MSRP of $349.99 USD.

Canon's PowerShot D10 Camera: Waterproof, Shockproof

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 10:00 AM

"For those with a taste for adventure, there's a camera as bold as the active life you lead. It's the Canon PowerShot D10. Waterproof, freezeproof and shockproof; it's tough enough to take what you dish out. Plus it's got all the high performance features you expect from a Canon digital camera. You've got 12.1 megapixels of resolution plus all of Canon's powerful, state-of-the-art imaging technologies so you can capture your epic experiences in breathtaking color and awesome detail."

Another area that Canon has been slow to move into is the "rugged" point and shoot category: a camera that's waterproof, shockproof (to absorb falls), and generally tough. Having once dropped an older PowerShot SD700 series camera and watched as the lens bent, I can attest to the fact that Canon Elph cameras, while beautiful to look at, aren't particularly tough. The D10 aims to change that, boasting 33 feet of depth for waterproofing, -10 Celsius/14 Fahrenheit freeze-proofing, and four-foot drop/shock protection. Not bad! 3x optical zoom, 12.1 megapixel sensor, and all the new goodies like blink-detection, face detection, and 18 pre-defined shooting situations round out the offering. Expected to be available in May 2009, the D10 will cost $329.99 USD. Unfortunately it looks like it's only going to be available in that cheesy aquamarine colour, and VGA video capture is where it tops out.

PowerShot SD970 IS, HD Video Now Added to Mix

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 09:12 AM

"Cool curves, powerful features and a fun new way to operate the camera mark Canon's PowerShot SD970 IS Digital ELPH. Amazing resolution and expanded editing options are yours with 12.1 megapixels, and you can even create HD movies. Shooting is fun and easy with Smart AUTO that makes all your shots better effortlessly, and there's a new user-friendly interface. And see how much fun it is to browse through your photos and even speed up image advance with a shake or tilt of the camera!"

Similar to my earier post I'm thrilled to see that Canon has finally added 720p video capture, and they've done it across multiple models. I've always found Canon's point and shoot product line up baffling, and they continue to confuse everyone by releasing the SD970 IS, a camera that has 5x optical zoom, a 12.1 megapixel image sensor, a three-inch display, 720p video capture, and a MSRP price of $379.99 USD. Then there's the slightly older SD990 IS, which is $20 more expensive, and boasts 14.7 megapixels, but only VGA video. So, the more expensive model with the higher model doesn't have everything the less expensive, cheaper model has. Well, at least Canon is consistent in making things confusing.

The PowerShot SD970 IS is expected to be available in April of 2009, at which point I'll try to pick one up immediately. I guess that shows how I really feel about my Panasonic DMC-TZ5 - it's just a bit too big, and the photo quality isn't that great. The 720p video and 10x optical zoom rock though, which is why I've tended to carry it. I'm willing to lose 5x on the optical zoom if it means better photos - which I presume the Canon will deliver.

Canon Releases New Digital IXUS (Elph) Models

Posted by Jason Dunn in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 08:57 AM

"Canon today strengthens its reputation for excellence in digital compact camera design with two new models: the slimmest ever Digital IXUS model, the 12.1 Megapixel Digital IXUS 100 IS, and the 10 Megapixel Digital IXUS 95 IS. Both models feature a new Smart Auto mode, which uses Canon's Scene Detection Technology to help users take great shots with ease. The Digital IXUS 100 IS also includes the option to shoot HD movies (1280 x 720, 30fps) and HDMI connectivity."

It seems like I've been waiting forever for this to happen: Canon finally released a point and shoot camera with HD video! We've seen 720p recording on small cameras for about two years now, going back to a Kodak camera if memory serves, and all the while Canon and Nikon, the two big guns in the camera industry, seemed to ignore this move toward HD video. These are the European model numbers, so after I post this I'll jump over to Canon USA's site and see what's new there...

UPDATE: Looks like the IXUS 100 IS is the PowerShot SD870 IS over here in North America. It comes in four swanky colours, including black, silver, a tacky gold, and a ruby red. The IXUS 95 IS is the PowerShot SD1200 IS and is available in even more colours...

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Panasonic G1: World's First Micro Four Thirds Camera Reviewed

Posted by John Lane in "Digital Home Hardware & Accessories" @ 03:08 PM

"Panasonic's stated reasons for introducing Micro Four Thirds are simple; to produce smaller cameras that act more like compact DSCs whilst offering the quality and versatility of a DSLR - and in doing so to convert some of the millions of compact camera buyers who - according to research - are put off digital SLRs by the bulk, complexity and lack of user-friendliness."

The Panasonic G1 is an interchangeable lens camera that employs a revolutionary idea - remove the mirror and make the distance to the lens smaller, thereby allowing you to make the lenses themselves smaller. Now, you can have DSLR quality without the DSLR bulk (which is exactly why I have a pocket camera in addition to my DSLR). The G1 gets DPreview's vaunted "Highly Recommended" rating. As a first step, Panasonic deserves the kudos. However, there are two drawbacks to the initial model - a limited selection of lenses and no video mode. It will be interesting to see if this product catches on, or if it is eclipsed by the ever-increasing capability of compact cameras. Click on the link to get all the facts on the new Panasonic G1.

Featured Product

The Canon PowerShot S100 - The incredibly fun and small camera that offers you 12.1 megapixels with a bright f/2.0 lens and full 1080p video recording . MORE INFO

News Tip or Feedback?

Contact us

Thoughts Media Sites

Windows Phone Thoughts

Digital Home Thoughts

Zune Thoughts

Apple Thoughts

Laptop Thoughts

Android Thoughts

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...

Reviews & Articles

Loading feed...


Loading feed...