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Minolta's DiMAGE Xi digital camera. Courtesy of Minolta, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Minolta announces DiMAGE Xi digital camera
By Michael R. Tomkins, The Imaging Resource
(Sunday, September 22, 2002 - 18:00 EDT)

Minolta Corp. has today announced an update to its DiMAGE X digital camera, dubbed the DiMAGE Xi.

The most obvious change in the new model is a 3.2 megapixel (effective) CCD in place of the previous model's 2.11 megapixel imager. Other changes include the digital zoom (now 2x or 4x), a choice of ISO settings up to ISO 400, and a doubling of the bundled memory from an 8MB Secure Digital card to a 16MB card. The body size and weight, lens, LCD display, etc. are all retained from the previous model.

Pricing for the Minolta DiMAGE Xi have not yet been announced, but the camera will apparently be available in late Fall, 2002.

MINOLTA DiMAGE Xi
Number of effective pixels 3.2 million
CCD 1/2.7-type interline primary-color CCD Total pixels: 3.3 million
A/D conversion 12 bits
Camera sensitivity Auto (between ISO 50 - 160 equivalent), ISO 50,100, 200, 400 equivalents
Focal length 5.7 - 17.1mm (35mm equivalent: 37 - 111mm)
Lens construction 9 elements in 8 groups (includes 5 aspheric elements)
Maximum aperture f/2.8 - f/3.6 (wide - telephoto)
Minimum focus distance 9.8 inches (0.25m) from front of camera
Maximum magnification
0.06x (1:16.7)
Equivalent to 0.4x (1:2.5) in 35mm format
Area covered at maximum magnification
3.44 x 2.58 inches
87.3 x 65.5mm
Viewfinder type Optical real-image zoom viewfinder
Monitor LCD
1.5 inch (3.8cm) low-temperature polysilicon TFT color with anti-reflection coating
Total pixels: 110,000
Shutter CCD electronic shutter and mechanical shutter
Shutter speeds 2 - 1/1000 second
Autofocus system Video AF
Autofocus areas Wide focus area, Spot focus area
Metering Multi-segment
Multi-segment metering 256 segments
Exposure control Programmed AE
Exposure compensation ±2 EV in 1/3 increments
Flash range
Wide: Approximately 0.8 - 10.5 ft. (0.25 - 3.2m)
Telephoto: Approximately 0.8 - 8.2 ft. (0.25-2.5m)
(Camera sensitivity: auto)
Flash modes Autoflash, Autoflash with red-eye reduction, Fill-flash, Flash cancel,Night portrait
Continuous advance Available
Self-timer Approximately 10 seconds
Movie recording
Recording time: 35 seconds (maximum) with monaural audio
Frame rate: 15 frames per second
Audio
Audio recording: 30 minutes (maximum)
Audio caption: 15 seconds (maximum)
Voice memo: 15 seconds (maximum)
Monaural audio only
White-balance control Automatic, Preset (Daylight, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent)
Digital zoom
2x, 4x
Digital zoom can be disabled.
E-mail copy function Creates a compressed VGA JPEG image for transmission.
Date imprinting
Year/month/day (Format can be changed.)
Imprinting can be disabled
Image-quality modes Super fine, Fine, Standard, Economy
Number of recorded pixels (Still images) 2048 x 1536, 1600 x 1200, 1280 x 960, 640 x 480
Number of recorded pixels (Movie clips) 320 x 240
Storage capacity
Approximate storage capacity (for images recorded without audio) of a16MB SD (Secure Digital) Memory Card:
Super fine: 1 frame; Fine: 9 frames; Standard: 18 frames; Economy: 36 frames; Movie:† 41 seconds; Audio recording: 30 minutes 51 seconds
* Recorded at: 2048 x 1536
** Actual number of images may vary depending upon the subject and memory card used.
† Total number of seconds that can be stored.
File formats
JPEG, TIFF, Motion JPEG (MOV), WAVE
DCF 1.0-compliant
DPOF-compliant (Supported by printing functions in version 1.1)
Folder name formats Standard, Date
Recording media SD (Secure Digital) Memory Cards, Multi Media Cards
Printing output control Exif Print, PRINT Image Matching II
PC interface USB 1.1
AV output NTSC, PAL (selected on the camera)
Battery One NP-200 lithium-ion battery
Battery performance (Playback)
Approximate continuous playback time: 110 minutes
Based on Minolta's standard test method with NP-200 lithium-ion Battery
Battery performance (Recording)
Approximate number of recorded images: 120 frames.
Based on Minolta's standard test method: NP-200 lithium-ion battery, LCD monitor on, Full-size images (2048x1536), Standard image quality, No instant playback, No voice memo, Flash used with 50% ofthe frames.
External power source 4.7V DC with specified AC adapter (sold separately)
Dimensions (WxHxD)
3.33 x 2.83 x 0.79 inches
84.5x 72 x 20mm
Weight 4.6 ounces (130 g) (approximately) without batteries or recording media
Operating temperature 32-104°F (0-40 ºC )
Standard accessories Hand Strap HS-DG100, AV Cable AVC-200, USB Cable USB-500, SD (Secure Digital) Memory Card (16MB), Lithium-ion Battery NP-200, Lithium-ion Battery Charger BC-200, DiMAGE Software CDROM (Includes DiMAGE Viewer)
Optional accessories
AC Adapter AC-4 or AC-5, Camera Case CS-DG100, Metal ChainNeck Strap NS-DG100, Marine Case MC-DG100
**Availability varies with region.
More Photos
Minolta's DiMAGE Xi digital camera. Courtesy of Minolta, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins.
.
Specifications, accessories and system requirements are subject to change without notice

Source: Minolta Corp.

Original Source Press Release:

MINOLTA INTRODUCES THE WORLD'S SMALLEST AND LIGHTEST 3.2 MEGAPIXEL DiMAGE Xi DIGITAL CAMERA

New digital camera with a 3x optical zoom lens also features the world's fastest start up time* and increased image quality, further enhancing Minolta's popular DiMAGE camera line

Cologne, Germany, Hall 1.2, Stand G 2-18 (September 25, 2002) - Minolta Corporation announces today at Photokina the new Minolta DiMAGE Xi digital camera. Building on the success of the highly popular and award winning Minolta DiMAGE X, the new DiMAGE Xi is equipped with a 3.3 megapixel CCD (3.2 million effective pixels) as well as a host of new functions and features.

The elegant new Minolta DiMAGE Xi features enhancements such as increased image quality, the world's fastest start-up time (1.2 seconds), and a seamless zoom range of 12x (combining both optical and digital zoom). Its camera body is made of aluminum with a brushed stainless-steel faceplate.

"The DiMAGE Xi builds on Minolta's renowned strength in optics and expertise in miniaturization," said Jon Sienkiewicz, vice president of marketing, Minolta Corporation's Consumer Products Group. "What sets this sister model to the DiMAGE X apart from the crowd is its enhanced image quality, remarkable optical and digital zoom range, and the world's fastest start up time in such a small and compact camera body."

The new Minolta DiMAGE Xi is approximately ¾ of an inch thick and shares the same revolutionary folded 3x optical zoom lens as the DiMAGE X. Making a camera this thin would be impossible with conventional zoom lens technology. However, the unique design of the 3x optical zoom lens allows it to move, or "zoom," vertically within the camera body. That means that when the lens moves from wide angle to telephoto, it always remains inside the camera body. The 3x optical zoom lens is equivalent to a 37mm - 111mm on a 35mm camera, and with the incorporation of the DiMAGE Xi's 4x digital zoom, the camera has up to a 12x seamless zooming capability.

This lens employs five aspheric elements (including two double-sided) to ensure sharp, contrasty images at all focal lengths. In spite of its compact dimensions, the optical zoom has a fast, maximum aperture of f/2.8 - f/3.6 (wide - telephoto), which allows images to be captured in low light with little noise.

Besides increased resolution, the DiMAGE Xi has several other enhancements when compared to its sibling the DiMAGE X, including user-selectable ISO settings, optional date imprinting, spot autofocus (AF), an improved anti-reflection LCD and automatic e-mail file copy creation.

Images captured with the high-quality lens of the DiMAGE Xi are enhanced by Minolta's CxProcess image processing technology, which helps control sharpness, color reproduction, tonal gradation and noise. This same technology is used in the top-of-the-line Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi SLR-type digital camera.

The Minolta DiMAGE Xi is built around a high-precision electro-optical system designed to maximize image quality. The system starts with a 3.3 megapixel 1/2.7-type interline primary-color CCD with 3.2 million effective pixels for fine high-resolution images. The pixel resolution of the CCD will produce 10 x 14 inch (B4-size) 150dpi photo-quality prints.

* World's fastest start up time of any digital camera with an optical zoom*.

A versatile multimedia tool, users can also make movie clips and add audio to their still images with the DiMAGE Xi

A 16MB SD (Secure Digital) Memory Card is included for image storage. About the size of a postage stamp, it is the smallest, high-capacity memory card currently on the market. These tiny cards are inexpensive and widely available. The camera also accepts MultiMediaCards.

For more detailed information on features and specifications of the Minolta DiMAGE Xi, please refer to the DiMAGE Xi backgrounder and specifications sheet

Minolta Corporation
Minolta Corporation, headquartered in Ramsey, New Jersey, is the largest subsidiary of Minolta Co. Ltd. of Osaka, Japan, a leading manufacturer of cameras, business equipment, radiometric instruments and planetariums. Minolta Corporation's Consumer Products Group (CPG) markets 35 mm film and Advanced Photo System cameras, digital cameras, binoculars, accessory lenses, photographic light meters, 35mm and Advanced Photo System film scanners and other consumer products.

The corporation's Business Products Group (BPG) markets digital and analog office equipment. Products include black-and-white copiers, digital black and white printer/copiers, plain-paper laser facsimile machines, digital color printer/copiers, micrographic systems, document management software, and related office equipment.

For more information, visit Minolta's Web site located at www.minoltausa.com or access Minolta's PHOTOFAX at 800-528-4767.

All brand names are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of their respective companies.

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