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  • Matsushita Firms Unveil Lightweight Digital Camera
  • March 20, 1998 (TOKYO) -- Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. and Matsushita-Kotobuki Electronics Industries Ltd. jointly introduced a lightweight digital camera with a resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels on March 16.
    Coolshot II (See chart.) measures 109.5mm x 60mm x 44.5mm and weighs about 265 grams with batteries and a memory card for recording photos.

    The product is the third model of digital cameras developed by Matsushita-Kotobuki Electronics. It will be available April 20 for 85,000 yen (US$652) through Matsushita Electric's sales channels.

    The digital camera's charge-coupled device (CCD) sensor is a 1/2.72-inch type with a total of 1.08 million pixels.

    The model uses a low-temperature polycrystalline silicon thin- film transistor-liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD) measuring 2 inches (diagonally). A no-display mode is available to reduce power consumption, and it also is equipped with an optical image viewfinder.

    The camera can take images with 1024 x 768 pixels, 512 x 384 pixels, and 1136 x 640 pixels. And images with 512 x 384 pixels will be used for x2 zoom shots, while images with a resolution of 1136 x 640 will make a rectangular picture with the ratio of length to breadth of 16:9.

    Images are stored in a CompactFlash card, a detachable recording medium, in the JPEG format. With an 8MB accessory card, about 40 still pictures can be stored in the 1024 x 768 high-resolution mode, and about 152 pictures can be stored in a 512 x 348 resolution mode.

    About 14 seconds is required to store images in the 1024 x 768 resolution mode, about four second for the 512 x 384 resolution mode and about 13 second for the 1136 x 640 mode.

    Also, the model is capable of serial shooting on its nine-way split screen, which is useful for shooting moving objects, to take nine pictures at intervals of 0.3 second. However, the size of those pictures is only 336 x 245 pixels.

    The product also has a software-processed x2 zoom capability for shooting as well as a digital zoom playback capability to select and enlarge a part of a screen to twice the normal size.

    A detachable strobe light, another accessory, will utilize different batteries from those used by the camera for power supply.

    The two companies of the Matsushita group, which have been jointly manufacturing imaging devices, plan to produce 10,000 units of the camera a month.

    Chart : Digital Camera Coolshot II

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    Updated: Thu Mar 19 19:35:48 1998