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Casio Exilim EX-Z4 - Firmware Updates - Jan. 21, 2004

Firmware updates are available for EX-Z4 and EX-Z4U (American model)

Version 1 to 1.02

Improves white balance performance

Fixes a problem that occurs in Voice Recording Mode when memory is full.

US update URL:

http://world.casio.com/exilim/en/download/ex_z4u_firmup/

International update URL:

http://world.casio.com/exilim/en/download/ex_z4_firmup/

A warning has been posted saying that it is very important that you use a fresh set of batteries in the camera for the update. If the update is interrupted you could end up with a dead camera. Follow instructions closely or you may end up with a paper weight.
 Exilim Z4 Casio Exilim Zoom EX- Z4

The first thing you notice about this camera
is how thin it is.


Then you notice is how large the LCD screen is. The 2 inch LCD seems to take up most of the back of the camera and is by far the most comfortable small camera LCD screen I have used.

Even with my glasses on, most of the LCD screens seem much too small. I gave the camera to a few other people, who didn't require glasses, and they all felt the same way. The LCD screen really makes it a pleasure to use this camera.

Those who ascribe to the philosophy, that you can never be too rich or too thin, will also appreciate the EX-Z4. It is a very easy to carry and put in any pocket camera. It is just as easy to take out of the pocket, turn on, point and shoot.

My assistant (my six year old son) was able to use this camera without any instructions and immediately knew how to turn it on, zoom the lens in and out, take pictures, review pictures that he had just taken, and shut the camera off after use.

The EX-Z4 has a resolution of 4.0 million effective pixels and is packed with features to enable users to take fantastic pictures, wherever or whatever the occasion may be. The new EX-Z4 is a mere 23.1mm at its widest point and only 19.7mm at its thinnest.

Click here for EX-Z4 feature and specifications

CP 3700
Nikon CoolPix 3700

Nikon has finally decided to manufacture a really small digital camera. I have been testing this camera over the Christmas and New Years holiday and I have to admit that I like it a lot. It is so simple that you really do not have to read the manual, which is good for a point and shoot and unusual for a relatively high-end CoolPix.

The image quality is very good for a 3 million pixel camera and it handles difficult to shoot scenes like strong mid day back-lighting like a pro. My only complaint is of course the same that I have for all the 'non professional' cameras, that it does not shoot RAW image files. I really like to have that extra stop or two to play with in the 'digital darkroom'.

The real test of course comes in image acceptance and from all the pictures I have recently sent to my sister of her nephew, her favorite is one I took of him with this camera. How can you argue with that?

It is that ability to come in close without thinking and just shooting that makes this a great camera. With SLRs I tend to compose and focus and fuss before I press the shutter release. With these point and shoot cameras I tend to thrust the camera into the scene at arm's length and just keep shooting as quickly as the camera allows me.

I still think of the CoolPix 5400 as being the minimal camera I would want to use for anything serious or professional but there is a real need for cameras that fit into a shirt pocket. And they sure are popular among my friends. So I will try to test as many of these ultra small pocket cameras as I can get my hands on.

http://www.nikon.com

CP 5400 Nikon CoolPix 5400

The ideal camera for real estate professionals. It can produce high quality 5 million pixel images. Has a hot shoe for Nikon Speedlight flash units, which is absolutely required for real estate interiors, and most important it covers the equivalent of a 35mm camera 28mm lens at the low end of it's zoom.

I have used this camera extensively so an in depth review is in the works. This is a serious camera capable of very fine results and will be even better once it's RAW capabilities are unleashed with a promised firmware update.

On the ease of use end, this is my six year old son's favorite camera. He especially likes the twisting LCD screen and the comfortable handgrip. Once I showed him how to change to the macro setting he was happily shooting pictures of his favorite toys and doing close-ups of plants and animals.

The twisting LCD screen was real nice for him because he was able to use it to change his, normally pretty low to the ground, perspective of the world.

http://www.nikon.com

    U-CA 3
Samsung Digimax U-CA 3

The Sansung Digimax U-CA 3 is a camera that is hard to classify. It seems to be made for taking to the disco or shopping with friends. I'ts sparkly exterior finish and a pulsating colored light on the front panel,  makes me want to say that it is a girl's camera, but that is probably a politically incorrect statement these days. Still I get this vision of young Japanese girls taking this camera to Harajuku to look for movie stars and pop singers to pose with.

Menu and controls are a bit confusing at first but once you get used to the layout it functions well. There is an animated Avatar to help you run the camera. Uses the new MemoryStick Duo flash cards. Resolution is 3.2 million pixels. The camera comes in a very nice carrying case, something other small camera manufacturers should consider.

Note for the Thailand market: this camera comes with multiple language support including Thai.

http://www.samsung.com



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