CIPA publishes spec guidelines draft|
(Monday, June 4, 2007 - 12:22 EDT)
Japan's "Camera & Imaging Products Association", perhaps better known as "CIPA", has today published a draft guideline that aims to standardize the way in which member companies state the specifications of their digicam products.
The drafting process for CIPA DCG-X002-2007, "Specification Guideline for Digital Cameras", began in late September last year and the document is now open to comments until August 3rd 2007. The guideline is intended to be followed essentially anywhere that camera specifications are listed, be that in user manuals, catalogs and advertising materials, or on the camera body and its packaging.
CIPA already has several existing documents which detail certain specifications guidelines, including "Guideline for Noting Digital Camera Specifications in Catalogs", however the new document is significantly more detailed. Topics range from the basics such as focal lengths / zoom ranges / apertures / shutter speeds and the like, all the way up to more advanced topics such as focusing systems / motion blur suppression / distortion / luminance non-conformity etc.
It should be noted that the guidelines only cover items the manufacturer chooses to list - so if a manufacturer doesn't want to list a certain specification, the guidelines don't require it to be listed. Also, as the name would suggest these are just guidelines - several of CIPA's existing standards contain notes that they are "not enforceable", and we'd expect no different with this latest draft standard once it reaches final form. With that said, CIPA's member companies do seem to take the standards very seriously, with for example usage of the CIPA battery life standard having become widespread.
No date has yet been set for the final publication of the document, which will be entitled CIPA DCG-002-2007 (with the X dropped from the name) when released. Past CIPA standards have generally been published in final form anywhere from a few days to a few months after the commenting period ended.