Weekend Wrap for October 7, 2011

This week in the world of imaging



Product: JVC announces hybrid still/vid cam

With a body that bears a passing resemblance to the Sony NEX cameras, JVC's new GC-PX10 is a a hybrid still/video camera that captures 12MP still photos and 1080p/60fps HD video—simultaneously. Built around a 1/2.3-inch back side illuminated CMOS sensor, it can shoot 8.3MP images at a burst rate of up to 60fps for up to 130 shots per burst, and VGA-quality slow-motion video (up to 2 hours) at 300fps. ISO goes up to 6400. The lens is a 10x optical Konica Minolta (!) lens. Available now for $899.



Product: Sigma announces version 2 of 18-200mm long zoomer

Sigma's successful 18-200mm superzoom lens has been succeeded by a new version the 18-200mm f/3.5-6.3 II DC OS HSM. The new version may not look much different from its predecessory but inside it now has FLD (low dispersion) and SLD (special low dispersion) glass elements, which are designed to correct color aberrations such as fringing. A Super Multi-Layer Coating is claimed to better control flare and ghosting. The diaphragm consists of seven rounded blades, which should result in more pleasing Bokeh. The on-board optical stabilizer is claimed to provide four stops of stabilization. The new lens will be available in Sigma, Nikon, Canon mounts with stabilization, Sony and Pentax mounts without it. It will list for $720.



Software: Adobe launches Photoshop Touch for Droid and eventually, iPad

Adobe this week announced a new app for Android OS-based tablet computers, Photoshop Touch. Use Photoshop features designed for the tablet such as layers, selection tools, adjustments, and filters to create mind-blowing images.  Use new Scribble Select to easily keep and remove elements of an image. Choose images from multiple sources, including social sites like Facebook, online image searches such as Google Image Search, or a live feed from your tablet's camera – all directly within Photoshop Touch. Facebook sharing and interactive tutorials are alsoprovided. Available for $9.99. This may be a first: Adobe is rolling out the app for Android, and afterwards will unveil an iPad version.

Industry News: As The Film Turns: Financial Drama Casts Doubts On Kodak's Future

Is Kodak going to file for bankruptcy? With no full-year profit reported since 2004, Wall Street has downgraded its stock rating again to even lower Junk status amid reports that the company has borrowed from its line of credit. As a result, stock prices plummeted 54 percent. The company, while denying bankruptcy was imminent, has hired a corporate restructuring (read: bankruptcy) specialist law firm, Jones Day, and has put over 1,100 digital imaging patents up for sale. The mood in Rochester? Gloomy. Now matter How Kodak spins it, Big Yellow Father is, apparently, on life support.


Product: Redrock Micro announces Canon EF to Micro Four Thirds adapter

Perhaps Canon doesn't have to create a MILC after all: Redrock Micro has announced LiveLens MFT, which has both the physical and electronic connectivity to allow owners of Olympus and Panasonic Micro Four Thirds cameras and MFT-based high-end camcorders to use Canon EF lenses. Redrock claims just about every EF lens available today can be used on MFT cameras via its adapter, such as the Panasonic AG-AF100, Pansonic GH2 or GF2, or any Olympus Digital Pen. Price: $495, available now at Adorama.

Tech news: Samsung 16MP sensor claims better image quality

Samsung this week announce a new 1/2.3-inch 16MP CMOS sensor with back-side illumination, a 1.34 micrometer pixel pitch, and claims of clear and fast video. The company claims low noise even at higher ISOs. Mass productio is scheduled to begin in November, so look for it in compact digital cameras starting early next year.

Product: Lensbaby Movie Maker Kit offers special effects in a box

Movie makers who use PL mount cameras have more creative options now, thanks to Lensbaby's Composer Pro PL. The new system, which gives filmmakers Lensbaby's unique approach to special effects imagin that has captured the imagination of still photographers. The Lensbaby Movie Maker Kit includes the Composer Pro PL, Muse PL with Double Glass, Composer Pro PL with Sweet 35, and one Composer Pro with Canon mount for use with Canon's HDSLRs such as the 5D Mark II. The kit comes with a range of interchangeable optics including the Fisheye Optic, Pinhole and Plastic optic, Wide Angle/Telephoto kit, Macro kit and more. The Lensbaby Movie Maker Kit will come in a custom Pelican case and cost $2,900.


And Finally...The smallest camera you'll never use

Ok, we got it. The Pentax Q is the smallest interchangeable-lens digital camera in the world. But the smallest digital camera in the world overall? How about this Liliputian 2MP baby, whose name is actually The World's Smallest Camera? It  measures 26mm square, has a rechargeable batter that will crap out in half an hour, and stores files on a 2GB micro SD card but can expand to 32GB, has a USB port for downloads, and can be easily hidden behind a Compact Flash card. There are no modern amenities such as an LCD screen, exposure control, or focus. There's room to lose this $100 novelty in even the smallest of camera bags.


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