The iPhone 4 isn’t particularly well-named. That’s because one of the things you’ll use this ingenious little device for least is making boring old phone calls. Between the terrific dual cameras, the zippy performance, and the luscious Retina Display, we were quickly absorbed in photography, games, web-browsing, and loads more. It’s truly a dramatic leap forward from the not-shabby-at-all iPhone 3GS.
The P100 is Nikon’s latest compact superzoom camera. It’s a further refinement of the P80 and P90 models that came before it, with a new backlit 10-megapixel CMOS sensor designed to improve low-light picture quality, a slightly increased 26x zoom range and--most exciting of all--full HD movie mode with stereo sound.
Although the camera in the iPhone got a boost to 3 megapixels in the 3G-to-3GS refresh, it’s still not what anyone would call “powerful.” So if you’re among the many iPhone owners who take a lot of photos with your smartphone, it may be time to supersize that built-in camera with an add-on like the USBfever 8X Telescope with Hard Case. What you get for your $29 is a telescope-style fixed optical zoom lens (which attaches to an included case) and a miniature tripod that steadies your iPhone while you shoot photos or video. The lens lets you manually zoom in on a subject up to 8X, so you can get much closer without ever moving a muscle.
A dozen new kinds of point-and-shoot cameras flood electronics stores
each year, and that’s often just from a single company. To distinguish
itself, Nikon took an interesting approach with its Coolpix S1000pj.
Instead of focusing on pictures, this camera shines--literally. It can
project photos and movies on a wall so everyone can see them. We like
the concept and had fun presenting instant vacation slideshows while
still traveling. But the average quality of both its photos and its
projection make this camera purely a technoholic’s toy. Discerning
photographers and home buyers on a budget should think twice.
When it comes to compact photo printers, we don’t usually hope for a
whole lot in the way of extras. That’s because the most we’d expect to
pay for a 4x6 photo printer is about 100 bucks, and the initially low
cost of printing at home piles up over time as ink and paper are
Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night can keep the new
14.6MP Pentax K-7 down--tight weather seals and low noise at high ISOs
ensure that if you have the chops, this camera will deliver no matter
what the conditions. The K-7 retains much of the great feature set of
its predecessor, the K-20
(5 out of 5 stars, Dec/08), with a few additions. It now sports a
brilliant 3-inch LCD viewscreen, 5.2-frames-per-second continuous
shooting, 1/8000-second shutter speed, and a whisper-quiet shutter. Its
innards are protected by a weather-resistant body, and HD video capture
has been added. All fine improvements.
Canon’s EOS 7D is a radical departure for the company’s popular EOS
family of cameras. It slots in between the prosumer 50D and the
full-frame, pro-level 5D Mark II--but a lot of tantalizing
functionality lurks within its magnesium-alloy bodywork. Just don’t
make the assumption that the 7D is a low-cost alternative to the 5D
Mark II--it’s really an entirely different kind of camera. One caveat
is that the APS-C–sized sensor is smaller (like in the 50D), so there’s
a 1.6x field-of-view adjustment needed for any focal length you use,
unlike the full-frame 5D Mark II. But it’s the 7D’s advanced features
and affordable price that make it a compelling shooter.
In the video camera market, the term "HD" is thrown around about as
much as the word "green" is used in the general consumer market. Both
are buzz words intended to lure in customers by making them feel
they’re on the cutting-edge of some important new trend. The number of
consumer digital video cams that claim to shoot HD is staggering,
especially when you consider that most camera companies think shooting
in a 16:9 aspect ratio is automatically HD.
The FS80 is an 8-inch digital photo frame that incorporates a 300 dpi
scanner. As digiframes go, it’s a winner, with 1GB of onboard memory
(to hold about 500 high-quality images), a bright 800x600 screen, handy
infrared (IR) remote, and built-in slots to read CF, SD, and xD memory
cards. The onscreen menus are easy enough for any second-grader--or
slightly tech-savvy grandparent--to navigate.
Coke versus Pepsi. Mac versus PC. Canon versus Nikon. Among these great
rivalries, we can only pick out one clear winner. (Here’s a hint: It’s
not the colored sugar water.) In the latest Canon-versus-Nikon
entry-level digital SLR (single-lens reflex) battle, both cameras score
hits against the other.