Wednesday, August 19, 2009

PENTAX Optio E80

HOYA CORPORATION PENTAX Imaging Systems Division is pleased to announce the launch of the PENTAX Optio E80 digital compact camera. This new entry-class model offers a large 2.7 inch color LCD monitor and simplified operation to enhance image-viewing comfort and operability. The Optio E80 comes equipped with a host of user-friendly features and functions to make high-quality digital photography effortless, even for first-time digital camera users. These include the use of world-standard AA-size batteries as a power source, large, easy-to-press control buttons, and the PENTAX original Auto Picture mode that automatically selects the most appropriate shooting mode for a given subject or scene. It also delivers high-resolution still images thanks to its 10.0 effective megapixels, as well as high definition movie clips (equivalent to 720p at 15 fps) making high-quality digital photography available to everyone.

Major Features

Large 2.7 inch LCD monitor for effortless image/menu viewing
Despite its compact body, the Optio E80 features a large, bright 2.7 inch color LCD monitor with approximately 230,000 dots. This monitor allows the photographer to clearly review images and menus on the screen.

User-friendly operation with large buttons and large menu text
All of the Optio E80’s control buttons, including the shutter release button on the top panel, are designed to be large and easy to press. Coupled with the large letters, numerals and icons used in the on-screen menus, this assures outstanding operability while minimizing the risk of erroneous operation.

Auto Picture mode for automatic selection of the ideal shooting mode
The Optio E80 features an upgraded version of PENTAX’s original Auto Picture mode, which automatically and instantly selects the most appropriate shooting mode for a given subject or scene simply by pointing the camera at the subject and pressing the shutter release button halfway down. In addition to conventional modes (Landscape, Portrait, Night Scene, Night Scene Portrait, Standard, Flower, and Sport), the Optio E80 also features a new Candlelight mode that makes automatic, high-quality digital photography possible with a broader range of subjects and scenes.

PENTAX Optio P80

HOYA CORPORATION PENTAX Imaging Systems Division is pleased to announce the launch of the PENTAX Optio P80 digital compact camera. Its ultra-slim, lightweight design allows it to be carried along anywhere, anytime — more like an accessory than a camera.

The new Optio P80 is the latest model of the popular Optio digital compact series, and features a compact, lightweight body. It provides a host of advanced features for the capture of brilliant, sharply focused portraits. These include: an upgraded version of the Face Recognition AF & AE function, which lets the photographer capture the subject’s face in optimum focus and exposure, even from diagonal angles and in different poses; a new Small Face filter, which helps produce a more attractive, better-proportioned subject image by making the face appear slightly smaller in relation to the body; and a more responsive version of the Auto-Tracking AF function, which helps keep an active subject in constant focus.

Major Features

Stylish, ultra-slim camera body
The Optio P80 sports a compact, ultra-slim body that makes it ideal for bringing along not only on trips and leisure events, but also on daily outings and business meetings. Combining many design elements — including a high-grade aluminum-alloy housing and delicately-contoured chrome-plated parts that sparkle from every angle — the body has a beautiful elegant finish that is a statement of the quality within.

PENTAX’s innovative Sliding Lens System* and space-efficient high-density mounting technology have significantly contributed to a downsizing and weight reduction of the camera body, making the Optio P80 extremely compact and lightweight — the thinnest part of the body measuring a mere 16.5mm in depth, despite the incorporation of an optical 4X zoom lens and a large 2.7 inch LCD monitor.


HOYA CORPORATION PENTAX Imaging Systems Division is pleased to announce the launch of the PENTAX Optio WS80 digital compact camera. The combination of a compact, lightweight body and outstanding waterproof and dustproof capabilities makes the new Optio WS80 an ideal choice for casual, day-to-day applications, including a variety of outdoor activities.

Within its compact body, the Optio WS80 offers a number of advanced, user-friendly features. These include: the assurance of high-quality, high-resolution image reproduction thanks to 10.0 effective megapixels; an optical 5X zoom lens; a large 2.7 inch LCD monitor; HDTV-proportioned movie recording; and a state-of-the-art Face Recognition function. Its airtight body also allows underwater photography to a depth of 1.5 meters for up to two hours continuously. This eliminates worries in situations where water or dirt can be a concern, such as outdoor events, in the garden or kitchen, or on a rainy day.

Major Features

Exceptional waterproof performance for worry-free underwater shooting
Despite its compact, palm-sized body, the Optio WS80 assures reliable waterproof performance conforming to IPX 8 (or JIS Class 8) standards, allowing underwater photography at a depth of 1.5 meters for up to two hours continuously.

It also features the PENTAX-exclusive, highly water-repellent SP (Super Protect) coating on the protective glass element installed at the front end of the zoom lens. As a result, the Optio WS80 can be simply rinsed clean with fresh water if it becomes covered with dirt or sand. Coupled with remarkable dustproof capabilities equivalent to JIS Class 6, the Optio WS80 can be used without worry in many different situations where water or dirt can be a major concern, including water and winter sports.


Sony today introduced the Party-shot™ personal photographer (model IPT-DS1)—an innovative camera dock that pans 360 degrees and tilts 24 degrees, automatically detects faces, adjusts composition and takes photos for you.

The Party-shot camera accessory uses the camera's BIONZ™ image processor with its Face Detection and Smile Shutter™ features to take photos without the user needing to snap the shutter button. This device makes it easy to capture more natural expressions and fun, candid moments of you, your family and friends without having to hire a photographer.

“With the Party-shot personal photographer, you no longer have to worry about taking photos when you are with your family or friends,” said Shigehiko Nakayama, manager of the digital imaging accessories business at Sony Electronics. “Party-shot captures candid moments that tell natural life stories and also offers a new style of photography that enriches time with your family and friends.”

Compatible with the DSC-WX1 and DSC-TX1 Cyber-shot® digital cameras, the Party-shot camera accessory is mountable on nearly any tripod, so you can set it up in a convenient location in your home, especially when you are entertaining. With two AA batteries, the Party-shot camera accessory captures photos for up to 11 hours and is portable, so you can enjoy taking pictures outdoors. You can also use an AC adaptor (sold separately).

Sony develops back-illuminated CMOS image sensor, realizing high picture quality, nearly twofold sensitivity*1 and low noise

Sony Corporation today announced the development of a back-illuminated CMOS image sensor (pixel size: 1.75µm square pixels, five effective mega pixels, 60 frames/s) with significantly enhanced imaging characteristics, including nearly twofold sensitivity*1 and low noise. This improved performance has been achieved by illuminating the backside of the silicon substrate, in contrast to conventional CMOS image sensors based on front-illumination technology.

The newly developed CMOS image sensor achieves a signal-to-noise ratio of +8dB(+6dB sensitivity, -2dB noise) in comparison to existing Sony CMOS image sensors of the same pixel size. Sony will apply this back-illuminated CMOS technology in consumer digital video camcorders and digital still cameras to deliver an even higher quality image experience. Conventionally, consumer digital video camcorders and digital still cameras have been required to combine high resolution capable of capturing every detail of the subject matter, and miniaturization oriented to portability. In order to meet these needs, image sensor development has focused on miniaturizing pixel size, while maintaining imaging characteristics. However, in addition to these ongoing requirements, in recent years demand for improved levels of minimum subject illuminance and rapid image capture has also increased. This has led to the requirement of image sensors with improved signal-to-noise ratio and other features capable of realizing improved overall picture quality.

Sony has retained the advantages of CMOS image sensors such as low power consumption and high-speed operation, while radically realigning their fundamental pixel structure from front-illumination to back-illumination to successfully develop a prototype, back-illuminated CMOS image sensor (pixel size: 1.75µm square pixels, five effective mega pixels, 60 frames/s) with improved sensitivity and noise reduction - the key factors to enhancing image quality.

With a conventional front-illumination structure, the metal wiring and transistors on the surface of the silicon substrate that form the sensor's light-sensitive area (photo-diode) impede photon gathering carried out by the on-chip lens, and this has also been an important issue in the miniaturization of pixels and widening optical angle response.


SAN DIEGO, Aug. 5, 2009 – Sony today announced two new Cyber-shot® cameras (DSC-TX1 and DSC-WX1 models) that provide unprecedented advances in low-light performance with approximately twice the sensitivity of cameras with traditional image sensors.

These Cyber-shot cameras are the first to employ Sony’s new “Exmor R” back illuminated CMOS sensor technology to improve shooting in low-light scenarios, enhancing image clarity and drastically reducing grain.

“With these new “Exmor R” CMOS sensor cameras, Sony has vastly improved the customer experience for taking pictures with digital still cameras in low-light scenarios,” said Phil Lubell, director of the digital imaging business at Sony Electronics. “We’ve all taken pictures in dimly lit areas, where the results were grainy and unclear. By redesigning the way these cameras capture light, Sony is leading the industry by creating this easy way to take amazingly clear, vibrant photos in low lighting scenarios.”

“Exmor R” Sensor Optimizes Low-Light Performance
Conventional image sensor architecture has required wires and other circuit elements to be positioned above the light sensitive photo-diodes, limiting the imager’s light gathering capability. Positioning these elements behind the photo-diodes, Sony’s “Exmor R” image sensors can gather more light, resulting in approximately twice the sensitivity compared to conventional sensors.

To further extend low-light shooting performance, the TX1 and WX1 cameras incorporate the hand-held twilight and anti-motion blur multi-shot modes introduced in Sony’s breakthrough Cyber-shot DSC-HX1. Using “Exmor R” CMOS sensor’s high speed, these modes capture six separate images in less than a second and utilize Sony’s BIONZ™ processor to combine the shots into a single image of extraordinary detail and low noise.

123di launches The 123 of digital imaging Version 6

123di Version 6.0 Integrates Photography Techniques with Post-processing
Post-processing rarely turns wrongly exposed or badly composed images into winners. Even the most sophisticated editing techniques and software are simply no substitute for excellent photography. On the other hand, photographers who ignore post-processing are not making full use of the potential of digital imaging, even if they are professional photographers using the best equipment. Post-processing makes it possible to bring even award-winning images to the next level by allowing the photographer to capture the entire dynamic range of the scene, allocate tonal detail exactly where it is desired, adjust perspective, correct for lens imperfections, tweak the color to the gamut of the monitor or print, add the right amount of sharpening depending on the desired output, etc.

Precisely with this in mind, 123di Version 6.0 advocates a three-step integrated approach to create winning images: capture the best possible picture by focusing on the correct camera settings and applying the right photography techniques, and bring the results to the next level with post-processing, preferably in RAW. Instead of treating these as three sequential and separate steps, the holistic 123di approach recommends shooting with the post-processing abilities in mind.

Three-step Interactive Learning Experience
While camera manuals state “how” to configure your camera, 123di explains “why”, “where”, and “when” certain settings are needed to achieve the desired photographic objectives. Among other things, a unique “interactive simulation” makes it incredibly easy to understand how aperture, shutterspeed, and sensitivity affect exposure, depth of field, motion blur, noise, and diffraction in the various exposure modes. One single interactive page simulates hundreds of scenarios and replaces days of practical experience, hours of video, and hundreds of pages in a conventional book. This “hands-on” interactive learning experience is backed up by theoretical background information.

Creating amazing images is not just about getting the camera settings right, it is also about finding the little “extra” that sets the extra-ordinary image apart from the ordinary one. This requires evolving from a “point-and-shoot” to a “move-around-and-shoot” photographer who applies proper composition techniques and always pays attention to the lighting at the scene. 123di illustrates this through practical examples, often showing an “average” way and a “unique” way to capture the same scene.