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Faster and Faster: Ricoh's New 3.24-Megapixel Digital Zoom Camera






Faster and Faster: Ricoh's New 3.24-Megapixel Digital Zoom Camera - digital camera and photography news

PRESS RELEASE

Tokyo, August 19, 2003. Ricoh is extremely pleased to announce the release of the Caplio G4 digital camera.

The new 3.24-megapixel Caplio G4 breaks new ground in digital camera speed. With a shutter response time of just 0.14 seconds, it actually exceeds the speed of a conventional 35mm camera. Indeed, the Caplio G4's shutter response time is the world's fastest in its class*.


* As of August 19, 2003 for all auto-focus digital cameras. Speed measured as time between depressing shutter release button and starting exposure in auto-focus mode without using focus lock.

That's not all. The Caplio G4 is blazing fast in its start-up time-a mere 1.9 seconds-and its flash recycling time. The camera's speed pays off by allowing the photographer to capture the desired shot with a minimum of delay.

An advanced zoom lens helps bring the shot into reach. With a 3x optical zoom lens plus a 3.4x digital zoom, the Caplio G4 features an exceptional 10.2x zoom.

The camera's stylish appearance, meanwhile, makes it the perfect accessory. Smaller and lighter than the Caplio G3 at just 150 grams, the camera fits comfortably in the photographer's hand.

For power, users have the choice of an optional long-lasting lithium-ion battery that enables hundreds of shots to be taken between charges, two convenient AA alkaline or nickel metal hydride batteries, or an AC adapter.

Six practical scene modes are available: portrait, sports, landscape, night scene, text, and high-sensitivity. In the latter mode, the screen automatically illuminates subjects to aid in framing the picture in under-lit environments.

An adjust button allows the user to easily adjust exposure (+2 to -2), white balance, and ISO (125-800) without going into Menu. Moreover, the imaging software provided makes instant image transfers from the Caplio G4 to USB-equipped personal computers fast and easy.




< Main Features >


World's shortest release time lag
Action photography is a snap thanks to the Caplio G4's world-record release time lag of 0.14 seconds. This speed effectively eliminates the problematic slow shutter response time found on the great majority of digital cameras today. The Caplio G4 achieves such speed with its hybrid auto-focusing system, comprising both external and through-the-lens focusing. From an amazing 1/2000th of a second to long exposures of 8 seconds, the shutter speed gives users the ability to capture a vast range of shooting possibilities.


1.9-second start-up time
Frustratingly slow start-up times are a thing of the past for users of the Caplio G4. The camera is ready to go in a mere 1.9 seconds.


Convenient and dependable power sources
Using the optional lithium-ion battery, the Caplio G4 can take a remarkable 4,300 shots* between recharges. An optional AC adapter is available for those wishing to take advantage of a nearby power source. The camera also has the rare ability to switch to two AA alkaline or nickel metal hydride batteries.


* A maximum of 4,300 shots under power-save mode (flash off, without zooming, LCD off, with VGA); up to 400 shots under normal usage conditions (with 50% flash and zoom usage, LCD on, 30 seconds between shots, reviews of all photos).


1cm macro photography
The Caplio G4 takes macros as close as 1cm from a subject, allowing the photographer to capture the smallest details: flowers, the surface of a gemstone, even details virtually invisible to the human eye.


The camera offers macros across a zoom range of up to 16cm away, while the built-in flash can be used for shots as close as 16cm.


Six distinct scene modes
Portrait, sports, landscape, night scene, text and high-sensitivity. All these modes help optimize results in varied shooting situations.


The high-sensitivity mode provides superior visibility in dim environments, aiding framing and shooting by illuminating subjects.


Adjust button
Thanks to this button, the user need not go into Menu to adjust exposure, white balance and ISO.


Multi-shot shooting
In M-continuous mode, with the shutter button held down the camera memorizes the last 16 shots, taken at 0.13-second intervals, in one file. This comes in handy when users are uncertain about the start or finish of a particular action.


In S-continuous mode, it can take a series of 16 shots - at 0.13-second intervals, for two seconds of footage - in one file with just one press of the shutter button. When reviewing the 16 shots in playback, each frame can be enlarged individually and quickly skimmed back and forth, creating a sense of animation.


All this makes the Caplio G4 a useful and enjoyable tool to analyze golf swings and other action sequences. In normal continuous mode, the intervals are 0.3 seconds while the button in being pressed.


Simple image transfers
After installing the RICOH GATE L software into a Windows PC or Mac OS computer, the user simply turns off the camera and links it up via a USB cable. The computer will then instantly start importing at an impressive speed of 3 megabytes per second. Mac OS X users can import images with iPhoto, while Windows XP users can take advantage of Windows Image Acquisition.


Practical exposure options
A 256-point light sensor scans the subject area to determine optimal exposure settings; it also offers center weighted and spot metering that incorporates auto-bracketing.


Compatible with Secure Digital memory cards
The Caplio G4 has 8MB of internal memory and can also use optional Secure Digital memory cards. These exceptionally compact devices do not need a power source to store information and permit fast and simple downloads of images. The camera is also compatible with Multimedia cards.


Synchro monitor mode
In this mode the camera conserves power by turning the monitor off before shooting. The monitor comes on when the shutter button is pressed to preview a shot or operate the zoom, and remains on for several seconds after a picture is taken.


Quick reviews at the press of a button
Most cameras require users to switch modes if they want to review results. With the Caplio G4, however, users can take advantage of the "Quick review" capability in any shooting mode. All they have to do is press a button to display the most recent image.


Video-recording capability
One of the more attractive features of the Caplio G4 is its ability to capture 180 seconds of AVI video without sound. This is perfect for times when only motion will do.


Auto-bracket and white balance bracket
When challenging lighting situations such as heavy sunlight arise, the handy auto-bracketing function allows the user to take three individual shots, at different exposure settings, at one time. The same functionality applies to the white balance bracket setting by applying tones of red, normal white and blue to three separate images.
August 19, 2003
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