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Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, front left quarter view. Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Sony announces 3mpix 3x zoom CD-RW digicam, we review it! (UPDATED)
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(Wednesday, February 28, 2001 - 16:00 EST)

Full specifications and a review of the second of Sony's two announcements, the Mavica MVC-CD300...

Sony has today announced two new digital cameras featuring CD-RW drives in a compact point'n'shoot style design. Both cameras feature 3x optical zoom lenses, along with Mini CD-RW storage, answering the issue that was raised of its previous MVC-CD1000 CD-R digicam, the fact that the camera could not reuse the discs or delete unwanted images. The new cameras both feature a CD-RW implementation that allows images to be deleted, with one proviso - only the most recent image can be deleted; to delete an older image you must first delete any images taken after it. The cameras can also accept cheaper Mini CD-R discs, although obviously the ability to reuse the media and delete images only applies to the rewriteable Mini CD-RW media. Both the Mini CD-R and CD-RW discs have a capacity of 156MB, and the cameras both come bundled with one of each type to allow users to experiment and see which they prefer.

The second of the two cameras, the Mavica MVC-CD300 features a 1/1.8" 3.34 megapixel image sensor, which gives an effective zoom range of 34-102mm on the camera's 3x optical zoom lens. The camera will cost $999 when it reaches the market at the end of May... Full specifications for the MVC-CD300 are already in our database, and highlights are below, along with pictures of the camera body. We've also posted a full review of the camera, which features our usual in-depth look at camera design and control, plus a battery of tests and sample images! The announcement of the Sony Mavica MVC-CD200, which is $200 cheaper and has a 2.11 megapixel sensor resolution, slightly less bright/wide lens due to a smaller CCD, and a slightly smaller camera body is covered in a separate news item.

Specification Highlights - full specifications here
Sony Mavica MVC-CD300
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, front view.  Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
General
Model Number: MVC-CD300
Camera Format: Compact
Retail Price: $999
Date Available: 2001-05-31
Image Capture
Image Sensor: 0.55" 3.34 megapixel RGBG CCD
Image Resolution: 2048x1536, 2048x1360, 1600x1200, 1280x960, 640x480
Movie Resolution: 320x240, 160x112
Lens
Focal Length (effective): 34 - 102 mm (3.00x optical zoom)
Digital Zoom: Yes (2x)
Auto Focus: Yes
Manual Focus: Yes
Normal Focus Range: 50 cm to Infinity; 19.7 in to Infinity
Macro Focus Range: 4 - 50 cm; 1.6 - 19.7 in
Aperture Range: f/2.0 (wide) / 2.5 (tele) - f/8.0
Display
Optical Viewfinder: No
LCD Viewfinder: Yes (2.5 inch, 123000 pixel)
Exposure
ISO Settings: Auto, 100, 200, 400
White Balance Settings: Auto, Indoor, Outdoor, One Touch
Manual White Balance: Yes
Shutter Speeds: 8 - 1/800 second
Exp Adj Range: +/- 2.0 EV in 1/3 EV steps
Metering Modes: Center-weighted, Spot
Exposure Modes: Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority, Manual
Self Timer (seconds): Unknown
Flash
Internal Flash: Yes
Flash Modes: Auto w/ red-eye reduction, Auto, Forced with redeye reduction, Forced, Off
Flash Range Description: 1 - 8.2 feet (0.3 - 2.5 meters)
Ext Flash: Yes
Ext Flash Connection: HVL-F1000 external flash sync
Image Storage
Storage: Mini CD-R, Mini CD-RW
Memory Included (MB): 312
File Formats: TIFF, JPEG, MPEG, GIF
More Information
Remote Control: No
Tripod Mount: Yes (Metal)
Weight: 650 g; 22.9 oz
Weight With Batteries? Yes
Size: 143 x 92 x 94 mm; 5.6 x 3.6 x 3.7 in
Notes & Features: Uses 8-cm mini CD-R or mini CD-RW disks. Supports deleting and rewriting on CD-RW disks, but deleting is sequential only (ie. you can only delete the last photo taken - to delete the previous photo you have to also delete the photo after it.) AF Illuminator light can be turned on/off. 14-bit A/D conversion. 5 in-camera sharpening settings. Flash output can be set to auto, high or low. LCD backlight is adjustable and has solar-assist feature. Has Acu-Power battery meter to show battery life remaining in minutes. Has voice memo mode. Can record GIF animations at 160 x 120 or 80 x 72 pixels. Supports in-camera trimming and resizing, MPEG 6X cue/review. Bundled with lens cap, battery, charger, 1 x 156MB CD-R disc, 1 x 156MB CD-RW disc.
More Photos
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, front left quarter  view. Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, front right quarter  view. Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, rear view. Copyright  (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, rear view with CD-RW  drive door open. Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, top view. Copyright  (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, bottom view.  Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, bottom view showing  battery compartment. Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, left view. Copyright  (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
Sony's MVC-CD300 digital camera, right view.  Copyright (c) 2001, The Imaging Resource. All rights reserved. Click for a bigger picture!
 

UPDATED 2001-02-28 16:58ET: Steve's Digicams just posted their first-look of the Sony Mavica MVC-CD300!

UPDATED 2001-03-01 11:32ET: Official Sony press release has been added to this item...

Source: Sony Electronics

Original Source Press Release:

DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY GOES EVEN MORE MAINSTREAM WITH SONY’S NEW COMPACT CD MAVICA® CAMERAS

Two New High-Resolution Digital Still Cameras Launched Based on CD-R and CD-RW Technology

PARK RIDGE, N.J., Feb. 28, 2001 Sony Electronics today introduced two new CD Mavica digital still cameras that take high-capacity, disc-based photography to new levels, with the ability to use CD-RW media in addition to lower cost, archivable CD-R media.
The MVC-CD200 and MVC-CD300, with 2.1 and 3.3 megapixel resolution, respectively, both capture photos and MPEG videos to CD-R and CD-RW media. These two new cameras follow the lead of Sony’s first CD-based camera, the acclaimed MVC-CD1000, introduced last year. Both of the new models will be available in June, and will sell for around $800 and $1,000, respectively.
Sony’s new CD Mavica cameras record images to an 8 cm CD-R disc that costs about $5 and gives photographers 156MB of storage. CD-RW discs, at about $8 per disc, with the same 156MB capacity, can be erased and reused for hundreds of cycles.
“These media provide the lowest cost-per-megabyte of storage in the digital camera industry,” said Greg Young, Sony Electronics’ general manager of digital camera and printer marketing.
“The high capacity of CD-R media, its affordability, archivability and its ability to be used in virtually any PC is what’s expected of a CD Mavica camera,” Young continued. ”But adding the option of CD-RW, a design that’s easy to handle, and a truly competitive price is what give these cameras broad appeal.”
Extraordinary Storage Advantages
With 156MB capacity, the CD can store more than 1000 VGA still images and more than 90 minutes of MPEG video. The media is directly compatible with virtually any personal computer, so image transfer is as simple and, at about $5 a disc, sharing and archiving photos is cost-effective.
Break-Through Features and High Resolution Imagers
The new CD Mavica models offer more than just a great way to store images. They incorporate new ergonomic and photographic advancements as well as a choice of resolutions and lens configurations. The MVC-CD200 provides 2.1 Megapixel resolution and a 3X optical zoom lens with 6X digital zoom. The MVC-CD300 adds 3.3 megapixel resolution, a 3X Carl Zeiss™ Vario Sonnar zoom lens, and three-shot, two-frames-per-second burst or exposure bracketing modes. Both models include AF illuminator assisted autofocus, extensive manual focus and exposure controls, and a choice of three MPEG movie modes, including Sony’s MPEG HQ, which offers full screen playback of 320 x 240 video clips with high sampling rate audio.
For fast, intuitive handling, the MVC-CD200 and MVC-CD300 include a top mounted mode selector for shooting, playback and exposure preferences, and a Jog Dial™ navigator for easier and faster control of manual focus, aperture and shutter settings. Highlighted by a contemporary new chassis design, these models are the most compact Mavica cameras ever. At 3-5/8” in height, they are just 3/8” taller than the 3-inch CD media itself.
The cameras’ features include:
MVC-CD200 CD Mavica

1/2.7” 2.1 Megapixel Super HAD™ CCD image sensor
1600 x 1200 maximum picture size
Records images to a 8 cm Mavica CD-R or RW Disc (156 MB)
3x optical, 6x digital zoom
High-speed scan AF with AF illuminator light and manual focus modes
2” 123K pixel precision LCD viewfinder
13-step Aperture priority, 39-step shutter priority, manual exposure modes
3-mode auto pop-up flash w/selectable red-eye reduction, compatible w/HVL-F1000 flash
MPEG Movie, MPEG HQ, Voice memo, text modes
JPEG, GIF, uncompressed TIFF or MPEG file formats
UXGA/XGA/VGA, 3:2 UXGA image resolution
USB transfer allows use as an external CD-R/RW drive
InfoLithium® rechargeable battery, AC adapter/charger supplied

MVC-CD300 CD Mavica

1/1.8” 3.34 Megapixel Super HAD CCD image sensor
2048 x 1536 maximum picture size
Records images to a 8 cm Mavica CD-R or RW Disc (156 MB)
Carl Zeiss Vario Sonnar 3x optical, 6x digital zoom
High-speed scan AF with AF illuminator light and manual focus modes
2” 123K pixel precision LCD viewfinder
13-step Aperture priority, 39-step shutter priority, manual exposure modes
3-mode auto pop-up flash w/selectable red-eye reduction, compatible w/HVL-F1000 flash
3-shot burst, AE bracketing, MPEG/MPEG HQ, Voice memo, text modes
JPEG, GIF, uncompressed TIFF or MPEG file formats
UXGA/XGA/VGA, 3:2 UXGA image resolution
USB transfer allows use as an external CD-R/RW drive
InfoLithium rechargeable battery, AC adapter/charger supplied

###

Sony Electronics’ Personal Network Solutions Company (PNSC), is based in San Diego. PNSC markets digital imaging products and services, including Cyber-shot® and Digital Mavica® still cameras, Handycam® camcorders, related accessories and ImageStation, a digital imaging Web site; branded computer products, including VAIO* notebook and desktop computers and eVilla™ Network Entertainment Center; Trinitron® and FD Trinitron displays, and other multimedia products through distributors, resellers and consumer retailers. For additional information about Sony products, call (888) 315-SONY, or visit Sony’s Web site at: www.sony.com.

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