Casio Announces New EXILIM Zoom Digital

From Casio’s press release:

Casio, Inc., in conjunction with its parent company, Casio Computer Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan, today announced the 4-megapixel EX-Z40, a new model in the EXILIM ZOOM line of digital cameras with long battery life and 3X optical zoom. The camera will be available at retail the end of April, with an MSRP of $399.99.

Over the last few years the digital camera market has undergone rapid change. Not only have there been improvements in picture quality because of higher resolution, the great usability of digital cameras has also been the focus of attention as they became more compact with faster response and larger LCD monitors. One area of particular concern has been the battery life of these cameras per charge, with many users asking for digital cameras offering longer operation times.

“Casio’s new EXILIM ZOOM EX-Z40 incorporates an EXILIM Engine, a newly developed compact image processing module with a 3 layer stack LSI that achieves high picture quality and speedy response using a 1.8V low-power system and makes the cameras’ compact dimensions possible,” said John Clough, president of Casio, Inc.

This new camera has a battery life of 2.5 times that of previous models (comparison between the EX-Z4U and EX-Z40), allowing up to 360 photos to be taken on a single charge (based on CIPA standard battery life measurement*).

*CIPA standard “Standard Procedure for Measuring Digital Still Camera Battery Consumption”:

Until recently there has been no standard measurement for battery life. This has resulted in inconsistencies between camera products and their catalogs and instruction manuals. As of December 2003, CIPA (Camera & Imaging Products Association) established the Standard Procedure for Measuring Digital Still Camera Battery Consumption, and hopes to reduce confusion among consumers by having this adopted by the world’s digital camera manufacturers and retailers.

“This means that the camera is not only handy for travel and work applications,” said Clough, “but it is ideal for any occasion when a lot of photos must be taken,” he added. Another handy feature is Auto Pan Focus. When photos need to be taken in a hurry, one rapid push of the shutter button will make the camera use pan focus, thus removing the need to wait for auto focus. “In combination with the approximate 1.6-second high-speed start up time and approximate 0.01-second release time lag, the features of this camera allows for even faster, more satisfying photography,” Clough concluded.

Other impressive features of the EX-Z40 include the large 2.0-inch TFT LCD screen and the Direct On function for one-touch record and play modes. In addition to being USB DIRECT-PRINT compliant for direct connection to printers, the EX-Z40 is also compatible with the PictBridge standard.

EXILIM ZOOM EX-Z40 FEATURES

High performance, easy to use, thin card size

  • High picture quality 4-megapixel
  • Thin card-size body incorporating 3X optical zoom lens
  • Large, easy to see 2.0 inch digital interface TFT LCD monitor (with acrylic scratch-resistant panel)
  • The Direct On function for one-touch recording or play modes
  • New, easy to hold grip with a high-quality light weight aluminum body

Long battery life on a single charge

  • 2.5 times the battery life of current cameras (comparison between EX-Z4U and EX-Z40)
  • CIPA standard for battery life indicates 360 photos on a single charge

Quick response

  • The camera automatically switches to Auto Pan Focus when the shutter is pressed in one action
  • Rapid start-up time allows you to start taking pictures approximately 1.6 seconds (with the flash off) after turning on the power
  • Release time lag after pressing the shutter is approximately 0.01 seconds (with the flash off)
  • Second high-speed playback scrolling of photos

More convenient functions

  • Record movies with audio, limited only by the available memory
  • The ‘Best Shot’ mode provides sample images allowing you to take the photos you want
  • Noise reduction processing makes night scenes more beautiful
  • 7-point Multi-Auto Focus for automatic selection of the optimum focus point location

Features for fun

  • Includes a voice record function with playback from the camera’s speaker
  • A ‘Photostand’ feature that lets you view a slideshow of images with the camera on its cradle
  • A ‘Calendar’ feature that shows thumbnail images of photos on the day they were taken
  • World Time lets you select one of 162 cities in 32 time zones as your home or destination time
  • Store special photographs or photos you don’t want others to see in the Favorites folder
  • Create HTML albums in the camera that can be viewed directly by web browsers

Other features

  • Connects directly to PictBridge and USB DIRECT-PRINT compliant printers
  • 9.7 MB built-in flash memory / SD memory card slot/ Multi Media card compliant (memory card not included)
  • Menu can be displayed in 10 languages, including English, French, German, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese
  • “Photo Loader” software is included to allow automatic transfer of images to a PC with one touch of the USB cradle button
  • Complies with ExifPrint (Exif 2.2) and “PRINT Image Matching II”

EXILIM ZOOM EX-Z40 SPECIFICATIONS

Recording Element:   1/2.5-inch square pixel primary color CCD (4.23 million total pixels; 4 million effective pixels)
File Record Format:  

Snapshots: JPEG (Exif. Ver. 2.2), DCF standard, DPOF compliant
Movies: AVI (Motion JPEG), Audio: WAV (Monaural)

Recording Medium:   Built-in flash memory (9.7MB image recordable area), SD memory card/Multi Media card
Recorded Image Sizes:  

Snapshots:
2304 X 1728 / 2304 X 1536 (3:2) / 1600 X 1200 / 1280 X 960 / 640 X 480 pixels
Movies: 320 X 240 pixels

Recorded File Sizes:

Snapshots

Image size (pixels)

Resolution /
recording time

File size

Built-in memory (9.7MB)

SD Memory Card
64MB *

2304 x 1728

Fine/Normal/
Economy

Approx 1.9MB/
1.5MB/1.1MB

Approx.
4/6/8

Approx.
30/ 37/ 50

640 x 480

Fine/Normal/
Economy

Approx. 190KB/
140KB/90KB

Approx.
46/61/ 98

Approx.
294/ 386/618

Movies

320 x 240

Recording time:
unlimited**

Approx. 300KB/sec.
(15 frames/sec.)

Approx.
30 sec.

Approx.
3 min. 20 sec.

Audio

Recording time:
unlimited**

Approx.
4KB/sec.

Approx.
40 min.

Approx.
4 hr. 20 min.

    * when using a Panasonic 64MB card
    ** limited only by the battery life and the available memory
Lens:   smc Pentax Lens (6 lenses in 5 groups, including aspherical lens) F2.6(W) to 4.8(T); f=5.8(W) to 17.4(T) mm (equivalent to approximately 35.0 to 105.0 mm when converted to 35mm film)
Zoom:   3X optical zoom; 4X digital zoom (12X total when optical and digital zooms are used in combination)
Focusing:   Contrast type AF (selectable between spot, multi); pan focus; macro mode; infinity mode; manual focus; focus lock

Approximate Focus Range:

  Normal: 15.75 in. to ∞; Macro: 2.36 to 19.69 in. (optical zoom 1 to 1.8X)
Exposure Control:   Metering: Multi-pattern by imaging element
Control: program AE
Exposure Compensation: -2EV to +2EV (in 1/3EV steps)
Shutter:   CCD electronic / mechanical shutter; 4 to 1/2000 shutter speed (including night mode)
Aperture:   Auto; F2.6 / F4.3
White Balance:   Auto; Fixed (5 modes); Manual
Sensitivity:   Auto; ISO50 / ISO100 / ISO200 / ISO400
Recording Functions:   Snapshot; audio snapshot; movies with audio; Best Shot, macro; voice recorder
Self-timer:   10 seconds or 2 seconds; Triple Self-timer
Built-in Flash:   Flash Modes: Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Red Eye Reduction
Approximate Range: 1.64 to 11.15 ft. (W); 1.31 to 5.91 ft. (T)
Finder:   LCD monitor; optical viewfinder
Monitor Screen:   2.0-inch digital interface TFT color LCD, 84,960 pixels (354

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