Picture Snob

August 21, 2008

The Polaroid Camera Returns in 2009: All Digital, No Shaking

polaroid_2009digicam.jpgEvolution hath touched the Polaroid thanks to the development of the Zink PoGo Printer (see earlier post). In 2009 we will see a digital camera from Polaroid that has a built-in PoGo Bluetooth printer. The camera will instantly produce 4" x 3" prints, and order can restore in the world. This seems like a much better concept than the printer all by its lonesome, which they've been selling throughout 2008. Stay tuned for pricing and more details as they surface. (via Slashgear)

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

August 20, 2008

The Eco Digi Mode Digital Camera: Environmental, Strange and Smug

ecodigimode.jpgOne step forward for the environment, five steps backwards for digital camera users. The Eco Digi Mode digital camera from Plaza Create Co. is on the market in Japan and it's a 3-megapixel disposable digital camera with flash, 2.4-inch LCD and capacity for 50 images. Once you use up the photos, you send it to a lab to get processed and the lab returns an image CD to you. Sound remarkably like the disposable film cameras, right? So presumably the only advantage is that you can opt to delete or save your photos as you shoot them, versus film where you're stuck with what you get. Once the lab processes your photos, it either wipes the card and resells the camera (interesting interpretation of "recycle") or breaks down the camera for parts to feed other cameras, mobile phones, etc. Retails for about $12 in Japan and the waterproof version goes for $18. Will this innovation hop the pond? We shall see. (via Gizmodo)

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

August 6, 2008

50-megapixels from Hasselblad: A New Use for Home Equity Lines

hasselblad_50mp.jpgWell, while some folks ogle at fancy car magazines, we ogle at Hasselblads. Sigh. 50-megapixels. This thing is HUGE. Its sensor alone (Kodak 50mp 36x48 mm) is twice the physical size of the largest DSLR sensors out there. This camera can capture a 65MB (compressed) image in 1.1 second. Be still my heart! Who is this gorgeous beast made for? Very high-end commercial pros. (Keep in mind most of these guys are satisfied with 25-megapixels.) So if anyone's got $36,000 burning a hole in their pocket, this Hasselblad is crying for you.

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 29, 2008

GoPro Digital Sports Cameras: An Extreme Sportsman's Dream

GoPro_sportscam.jpgIf you're a dirt biker, road biker, mountain biker or motorcycle biker, GoPro has got a durable digital camera for you to mount to your helmet, wrist or bike--as well as your kayak, skis, skateboard, car and anything else you can think of. This would probably work for hardcore Segway riders too. The cameras are waterproof to 100 feet and bomb-proof and capture both photo and video. Details are below--click through the links to buy and see actual footage shot with the cameras.

Helmet HERO ($169.99)
GoPro_helmet.jpg- Quick-release mounts to your helmet (vented or non) or sporting device (skis, kayak, etc.)
- Shoots up to 56 minutes of TV-resolution 30 fps video
- Can activate "Photo Every 5 Seconds" mode to capture up to 1400 photos (2 hours)
- Adjustable sound recording to address high-vibration environments
- 3-megapixel, 2 GB memory card, PC/MAC compatible, takes 2 AAA batteries
- Waterproof to 100 feet, bomb-proof
- Optional accessories: wide-angle lens, Expansion Kit, Ride HERO, Parts Grab Bag

Motorsports HERO
($179.99)
GoPro_motorsports.jpg- Miniature wireless digital video camera
- Quick-release design for simple click-mount (car, motorcycle, etc.)
- Shoots up to 56 minutes of TV-resolution 30 fps video
- Sound recording designed to capture extreme driving sounds
- 3-megapixel, 2 GB memory card, PC/MAC compatible, takes 2 AAA batteries
- Waterproof to 100 feet, bomb-proof
- Optional accessories: Suction Cup Mount, Expansion Kit, Ride HERO, Parts Grab Bag
- Available for pre-order now--ships 12/01/08

Digital HERO 3 ($139.99)
GoPro_digital3.jpg- Wrist-mount digital camera (4.5 ounces) locks flat and pivots for use
- Shoots up to 56 minutes of TV-resolution 30 fps video
- Can activate "Photo Every 5 Seconds" mode to capture up to 1400 photos (2 hours)
- Adjustable sound recording to address high-vibration environments
- 3-megapixel, 2 GB memory card, PC/MAC compatible, takes 2 AAA batteries
- Waterproof to 100 feet, bomb-proof
- Optional accessories: Expansion Kit

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 28, 2008

Disposable Digital Cameras: Made with Recycled Cell Phones

disposabledigicam.jpgJapan is leading the way here on disposable digital cameras made from recycled cell phone displays. Plaza Create Co. developed the camera and runs 1,200 photographic print shops across Japan. Right now only the LCD displays are recycled but the company plans to incorporate phone camera lenses in the future. The disposable camera will do 27 exposures and retail for about 1,280 yen ($11.91) or 50 exposures at 1,480 yen ($13.77), which is comparable to the current film models priced between 500 and 1,000 yen ($4.65-9.30). Considering there's no development fee with the digital camera, consumers are making out well. While you can't rewrite over the memory card, you are given the option to "save" or "delete" after each shot, so there should be no exposures wasted. (via The Daily Yomiuri)

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

July 22, 2008

Meet GigaPan: The Robot Who Helps Digital Cameras Take Panoramic Shots

gigapan_beta500.jpgIf you don't already have a robot in your life, get used to the idea because they are already sweeping floors, cutting grass and now they're shooting a mean panoramic photo.

Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have developed a consumer-friendly robotic device that attaches to most digital cameras. It's called GigaPan, descriptive of its ability to capture over a billion pixels in a high-resolution panorama. Woah! GigaPan is larger than your digital camera and requires the use of a tripod. It uses a robotic finger to repeatedly click the shutter to take dozens to thousands of overlapping images, each at a slightly different tilt. The images are then spliced together to create the awesome panorama. How long does a shot take? Up to 90 minutes, so bring a cocktail.

These "giga" panoramas are idea to zoom into on a computer monitor, seeing crisp detail across a vast space--kind of like looking through binoculars. The plan is to release the GigaPan later in the year--no exact price yet, but folks are dedicated to making this affordable and speculate on a price in the $150-300 range.

Visit gigapan.org to see more examples. It's pretty cool! We'll keep you posted on updates.

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

July 15, 2008

Soul Snatchers: The Best Digital Cameras for Ghost Hunters

ghosthuntercamera.jpgSo we all know that digital cameras have caught on with the general public, but did you know that Ghost Hunters are into them now too? Imagine that. If you dabble in paranormal research and are in the market for a digital camera to capture your spooky evidence, look out for the following features: (via Suite 101)

Auto and Manual Settings

When it comes to photographing semi-transparent matter (i.e. mist, ectoplasm) you'll want to be able to override your camera's automatic settings on flash and depth of focus.

Variety of Shutter Speeds
You'll also want to be able to set your own shutter speed--sport settings (high-speed shutter) will help you capture orbs and light vortices while slow shutter speeds (don't forget to use a tripod) will help you with things in motion (i.e. Myrtle floating down the stairs).

High ISO
The higher the ISO, the less light you need to get an exposure. Note that the higher the ISO, the greater the grain in your shot. Digital grain can be pretty icky depending on the quality of your camera and number of megapixels... it tends to take on a muddy blue cast.

Many Megapixels
If you're going to have any luck proving your phenomenal theories, treat yourself to some megapixels. The more megapixels, the better the detail in the shot and the more flexibility you'll have to crop into a shot or compare Casper with his dental records.

So which camera?
For the ultimate control, seriously consider a digital SLR. They pain the wallet, but you can't beat the capabilities if you know how to use them. One of the key features of the Canon EOS-40D ($900) is that it's designed to shoot at a high ISO with very little grain (sometimes called noise). Nikon's D3 SLR ($4,700) has one of the highest ISO settings available (25,600 -- no, that's not a type-o) and 12-megapixels to see right up the nose of your ghost. For a more affordable option, most Kodak EasyShare ($200+) cameras are a good bet--just be sure to get 6-megapixels or more.

The truth is out there, folks. It's up to you to capture it.

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

June 30, 2008

For Gadget Goobers! The Ricoh 500SE Digital Camera with GPS Technology

ricoh_GPScamera.jpgWoo hoo! Ricoh has teamed up with GeoSpatial Experts to launch a camera with GPS modules, a magnetic compass and digital mapping software. This means your Ricoh 500SE camera will automatically link each photo with location coordinates derived from satellite positioning. It will also record the direction the camera was pointing when each photo was taken. Camera is 8-megapixels, has 3X optical zoom with optional attachments and built-in Bluetooth. Besides Gadget Goobers, real estate agents, insurance claims adjusters and police detectives might find these GPS features useful. GeoSpatial Experts is selling the Ricoh 500SE as a package deal for $1,709. Package includes 2GB removable memory card, camera bag, Lithium Ion battery and charger and for $50 more comes with Wi-Fi preinstalled.

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

June 25, 2008

Digital Camera Triggers Nuclear Plant Shutdown in NY

powerplantshutdown.jpgWho knew? A couple weeks ago at the Indian Point nuclear power plant in Buchanan, New York, the radio frequencies from an employee's digital camera apparently interfered with a control panel it was near. The control panel regulated a boiler pump that provides water to steam generators and the interference resulted in a water level drop, which resulted in the shutdown of the nuclear reactor. There were no environmental problems associated with the shutdown. According to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) simply having the digital camera "on" was enough to interfere with controls at the close distance. The nuclear plan regularly uses cameras to document equipment and this accidental shutdown has resulted in some fresh new policies as you can imagine. In 1997 there was an incident where Halon gas was released in Connecticut at the Haddam Neck Plant caused by camera flashes. Careful, Homer! (via newsday)

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (0) | social bookmarking

June 24, 2008

Eye-Fi Card: If Someone Steals Your Digital Camera, Will the Camera Cry for Help?

EyeFiMemoryCard.jpgWell, it could. Thousands of digital cameras are lost each year on airplanes, in hotel rooms and at the hands of creepy thieves. With the new Eye-Fi memory card, you can program your camera to automatically send its photos and videos to an email address or certain photo sharing websites like Flickr and Facebook. The teenie memory card has a built-in wireless connection that automatically activates a transmission of data whenever you're passing within range of a specified wireless network. So to be clear, there's no guarantee that you'll reclaim photos from a stolen camera, but there's a chance. What's better is that while you're traveling, now you don't have to hunt down an Internet café or lug along a laptop to clear your memory card. You can pick up a 2GB Eye-Fi Card at Amazon for $99.99.

Susan Moriarty at Permalink | Comments (1) | social bookmarking

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