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Casio's Exilim EX-M1 digital camera. Courtesy of Casio, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Casio announces two really tiny digicams!
(Thursday, March 14, 2002 - 09:00 EST)

Exilim EX-S1 and EX-M1 offer functionality that you might not expect in such a tiny package...

Note: We were initially told this announcement was for 9AM Eastern Time, however having seen it already posted on at least two other sites, we now consider the information to be public and are going ahead ourselves...

Casio has today announced two new ultra-compact digital cameras at the CeBit show in Germany. The company claims that one of the pair is "is the smallest, thinnest and lightest [digital camera] in the world", and whilst we'd note that SMaL's long-awaited Ultra-Pocket digital camera is actually more than 1/3rd smaller by volume, 5mm thinner and a tad lighter than Casio's newly-announced Exilim EX-M1 and EX-S1 cameras, they are still undoubtedly the most pocketable fully-featured cameras we've heard of yet. SMaL's 6mm-thick Ultra-Pocket, which is listed in Guinness World Records as the world's thinnest camera, lacks any LCD display and has only a VGA resolution - where Casio's new cameras are 1.3 megapixel units with 1.6" LCD displays. They're certainly the smallest digital cameras with an LCD display for image review, megapixel resolution or (in the case of the EX-M1) MP3 playback capability - the EX-S1 is only 88 x 55 x 11.3mm! They could almost justify creating a new category name (ultra mega super compact, perhaps?) as they're just 1/5th of the volume we count as the maximum for an ultracompact camera...

The Exilim cameras have an interpolated maximum resolution of 1600 x 1200 pixels, and a true 1280 x 960 pixel resolution. Both cameras have a 37mm-equivalent fixed focus lens, 14MB of internal memory, a Secure Digital / MultiMediaCard slot, built-in flash, USB connectivity, 4x digital zoom and a 320 x 240 pixel movie mode. The cameras come bundled with a docking station in which the battery can be recharged, lithium ion battery, USB cable and a hand-strap. The EX-M1 model is 1.1mm thicker than the -S1 model, and adds MP3 playback (stereo headphones and remote with LCD info display bundled), as well as a microphone for movie audio, still image voice annotation and voice memo recording. Both models are planned to ship in July, and pricing has not yet been announced...

Casio Exilim EX-M1 / S1
Recording element 1/2.7" square pixel primary color progressive CCD
Effective pixels 1.24 million (total of 1.31 million pixels)
Image file record format JPEG, DCF standard, DPOF-compliant
Recording medium Built-in flash memory (Storage area: approximately 14 MB internal storage), SD memory card / Multi Media card
Recorded Image Sizes

Still images (EX-M1 also allows sound recording);

1600 x 1200 (interpolated) /1280 x 960 /640 x 480 pixels

Movies (EX-M1 also allows sound recording);

320 x 240 pixels

Voice memo Storage by built-in memory, SD memory card / Multi Media card
Music player MP3 file format (EX-M1 only)
Image deletion Single image, all images in memory (with memory protection)
Lens F2.5, f=5.6mm (equivalent to 37 mm in 35 mm format)
Zoom Digital 4X
Focusing Fixed focus
Exposure control Center-weighted metering by CCD, program AE control
Exposure compensation -2EV to +2EV (in steps of 1/3EV)
Recording mode Snapshot, Self-timer, Movie, Best Shot, Still Image with sound (EX-M1 only), Voice Memo (EX-M1 only)
Shutter CCD shutter, mechanical shutter
White balance Automatic / Fixed (4 modes) / Manual
Self-timer 10 seconds
Built-in flash Flash modes: Auto, Flash On, Flash Off, Red Eye Reduction
Monitor 1.6'' TFT color LCD (84,960 pixels; 354 x 240)
Viewfinder Monitor screen and optical viewfinder
Timekeeping function Date and time recording with image data
Input / Output terminals Connector to USB docking station
Power requirements Lithium ion battery
Dimensions / Weight

EX-S1: 88(W) x 55(H) x 11.3(D) mm (excluding projections) / approx. 86 g (excluding battery and memory card)

EX-M1: 88(W) x 55(H) x 12.4(D) mm (excluding projections) / approx. 87 g (excluding battery and memory card)

Bundled accessories Docking Station, AC adapter for Docking Station, USB cable, strap, lithium ion battery, Stereo Headphones (EX-M1 only), remote control (EX-M1 only), CD-ROM
More Photos

Source: Casio Inc.

Original Source Press Release:



DOVER, NJ, March 14, 2002-Casio, Inc., Dover, NJ, along with Casio Computer Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan, introduced the EXILIM EX-S1, a credit-card-sized digital camera that is the smallest, thinnest and lightest in the world. The announcement was made at the CeBIT show that opened in Hanover, Germany today.

The EXILIM EX-S1 is only 11.3 mm thick, 88 mm wide x 55 mm high and weighs a mere 86 g, excluding the battery and memory card. The EXILIM is designed to be a constant companion at work, during sporting events, on evenings out, trips away or anywhere you take it. Unique moments, unusual snapshots, memorable situations -- nothing will be lost, as the EXILIM is always at hand. The camera won't be visible in a shirt pocket nor does it require any bulky camera bag.

Its sister model, the EXILIM EX-M1 is equipped with an integrated MP3-player, a movie player (with sound) and recording function. Only 1.1 mm thicker, this model has a total depth of 12.4 mm, and all other dimensions remain the same.

The silver finish of the all-metal camera emphasizes its high quality. The small, flat, miniature design offers a range of convenient operating functions. The EXILIM EX-M1, with MP3 function, permits short movie recording with sound, as well as individual pictures, pictures using the self-timer feature and individual pictures with sound. It also has a Best-Shot feature, already used in other Casio cameras.

"Casio pioneered the personal digital camera market with the introduction of the QV-10 back in 1995," said Kazuo Kashio, president of Casio Computer Co., Ltd. "The EXILIM marks the beginning of a totally new direction that breaks from the "more pixels - more functions" approach pursued until now by creating a new genre of digital cameras that are so thin and compact that they can be taken just about anywhere. Once again Casio is aiming at creating product-driven innovative new applications and markets."

Gary Rado, president of Casio, Inc. added: "Casio pioneered the digital camera market over a decade ago, and has consistently secured itself a solid position in the market for digital cameras. The new EXILIM Card Camera series is a result of Casio's continued innovations and renewed focus on our core competences in designing and manufacturing small personalized digital products. With the growing popularity of digital cameras, the EXILIM series is one of the first truly attractively designed pocket sized mega pixel cameras that provides a real ease of use for photography on the go!"

The EXILIM has a 1/2.7", 1.31 million pixel CCD and 1280 x 960 dpi standard image size. The optical viewfinder is supplemented by an innovative 1.6" digital display supplying clear and bright pictures full of contrast. The lens has a speed of F=2.5 and a fixed focal length of f=5.6 mm, which complies with a focal length of 37 mm for 35 mm cameras. The built-in flash is activated in unfavourable lighting conditions.

The EXILIM saves images to its internal memory. SD/MMC cards can be used as additional storage. The USB docking station has dual functionality as a link for transferring image data to a PC, as well as a charger for the lithium ion battery. The camera uses a rechargeable, efficient lithium ion battery.

Accessories included with the camera are a lithium ion battery, strap and a USB docking station with cable and extensive software on CD-ROM. The EX-M1, the MP3 version, comes with stereo headphones and remote control. Both models will be available at specialty retail stores in July.

  • One-Unit-Module of Lens and CCD
    The technology of integrating a spherical lenses and a high-sensitivity CCD into a single component, developed by CASIO, contributes tremendously to the thinness of the EXILIM.
  • High-sensitivity CCD
    A new 1/2.7-inch progressive CCD, which is larger than the current mainstream 1/3.2-inch CCD, allows the largest cell size 4.1 micron pitch in this class, resulting in an extremely high sensitivity CCD. This CCD reduces blurring due to hand and subject movement, and makes it possible to take pictures without flash in low lighting.
  • Multi Chip Module (MCM)
    Casio's newly developed CPU, ASIC, SDRAM and Flash memory make it possible to reduce power consumption and noise by 1/3. In addition, by incorporating these 4 chips into a multi module chip, the chip size is greatly reduced by 70%, in comparison with our current digital cameras.
  • Digital Interface TFT LCD
    The world's first digital interface TFT LCD for a digital camera was specially designed by Casio for the EXILIM. The digital interface eliminates the need for a converter, which cuts required space by 10% (as compared to the TFT LCD technology applied to our current digital cameras) and greatly reduces the number of required components.
Design and specifications are subject to change without notice

Casio, Inc., Dover, N.J., is the U.S. subsidiary of Casio Computer Co., Ltd., Tokyo, Japan. Casio, Inc., markets calculators, business organizers, handheld personal computers, keyboards, digital cameras, portable color TVs, timepieces (Wrist Technology), cash registers and other consumer electronic products. Casio, the unexpected extra - for more information visit our web site at www.casio.com.

Casio is a registered trademark of Casio Computer Co., Ltd. "The unexpected extra" is a trademark of Casio, Inc.

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