PMA 2009: Every year, the photo industry assembles for the annual PMA Trade Show. This past March, the Las Vegas Convention Center was buzzing with manufacturers, distributors and photographers, all assembled to see the latest innovations and equipment to help photographers take better pictures and do more with them. There was a lot to see and learn about, and this special edition of In Focus offers a sampling of some of the impressive products from the show.
COMPACT D-SLR At just 16.7 ounces, the Olympus EVOLT E-620 is easy to take on your next trip. The 12.3-megapixel D-SLR incorporates many of the technologies used in the company’s more advanced cameras like a 2.7-inch LCD that swivels 270 degrees, multiple-exposure shooting, and in-body image stabilization. The E-620 also features the art filters introduced in the E-30. The filters give you more in-camera artistic control by allowing you to enhance colors, change lighting and more. With Autofocus Live View, you can preview these effects along with other settings like white balance and exposure. List Price: $699 (body only). Contact: Olympus, (888) 553-4448, www.olympusamerica.com.
ULTRAZOOM Go from wide-angle to tele to close-up using the Pentax X70, which packs a 24x optical zoom lens that’s equivalent to 26-624mm in 35mm format. The 12-megapixel camera incorporates three shake-reduction technologies, including a sensor shift mechanism, digital shake reduction via high ISO, and a function for capturing blur-free HD video. Other features include high-speed continuous shooting at 11 fps, a 2.7-inch LCD, and a Super Macro mode for getting as close as 1 cm from the lens. List Price: TBA. Contact: Pentax, (800) 877-0155, www.pentaximaging.com.
ADVANCED CCD The sensor technology developed for Fujifilm’s FinePix F200EXR is the first of its kind in the company’s F-series compact cameras. Using the EXR mode, you can adapt the sensor to the subject you’re shooting. There are three modes: high resolution (Fine Capture), high sensitivity and low noise (Pixel Fusion), and wide dynamic range (Dual Capture). So if you’re dealing with a lot of light and shadows, switch to Dual Capture to better handle those extremes. In low light, use Pixel Fusion to take the picture without a flash. The camera also features a 5x optical zoom lens equivalent to 28-140mm and a three-inch LCD. List Price: $399. Contact: Fujifilm, (800) 800-FUJI, www.fujifilmusa.com.
SLIM EXILIM By reducing the size of the image sensor and circuitry, Casio introduces a couple of very small cameras that deliver high-speed 30-shot-per-second burst rates, and movies at a maximum of 1,000 fps. The card-sized Exilim EX-FS10 is just 3.8x2.3x0.64 inches and offers 9.1-megapixel resolution. While the palm-sized Exilim EX-FC100 measures just 3.9x2.3x0.9 inches and features a 9.1-megapixel CMOS sensor. List Price: $349 (EX-FS10); $399 (EX-FC100). Contact: Casio, (800) 435-7732, www.casio.com.
HD HYBRID CAMERA Building on its Micro Four Thirds camera lineup, Panasonic debuts the Lumix DMC-GH1. Similar to its predecessor, the Lumix DMC-G1, the camera can record high-definition video and features a lens designed to support that capability with a silent motor and continuous autofocus. The Micro Four Thirds system replaces the bulky mirror-and-prism mechanism that makes up an SLR’s viewfinder with an electronic one, allowing for even smaller and lighter designs. The “Live View Finder” allows you to preview exposure, aperture, shutter speed and other settings before taking the photo. List Price: TBA. Contact: Panasonic, (800) 211-PANA, www.panasonic.com.
PANORAMA POINT-AND-SHOOT Capturing up to 224-degree panorama shots in a single motion, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-HX1 offers a new way of taking those ultrawide landscape photos. You simply press the shutter and pan the camera. The HX1 continuously shoots full-resolution images and stitches them together to create a single photograph. The 9.1-megapixel camera has a CMOS sensor adapted from Sony’s Alpha DSLR lineup and a Sony G lens that’s equivalent to 28-560mm ƒ/2.8-5.2 in 35mm format. Estimated Street Price: $500. Contact: Sony, (877) 865-SONY, www.sonystyle.com.