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"Picky Details" for the Epson L-500V digital camera
(Timing, Power, and Storage Info)

Timing

When you press the shutter release on a camera, there's usually a lag time or delay before the shutter actually fires. This corresponds to the time required for the autofocus and autoexposure mechanisms time to do their work, and can amount to a fairly long delay in some situations. Since this number is rarely reported on (and even more rarely reported accurately), and can significantly affect the picture taking experience, I routinely measure both shutter delay and shot to shot cycle times for all cameras I test, using a test system I designed and built for the purpose. (Crystal-controlled, with a resolution of 0.001 second.) Here are the numbers I collected for the Epson L-500V:

 

Epson L-500V Timings
Operation
Time
(secs)
Notes
Power On -> First shot
2.9
LCD turns on and lens extends forward. About average.
Shutdown
1.3 - 2
First time is time to retract lens, second time is worst-case buffer-clearing time. Fairly fast.
Play to Record, first shot
0.5
Time until first shot is captured. Very fast.
Record to play
2.0 / 1.0
First time is that required to display a large/fine file immediately after capture, second time is that needed to display a large/fine file that has already been processed and stored on the memory card. Pretty good.
Shutter lag, full autofocus
0.78 / 1.04
First time is at full wide-angle, second is full telephoto. Ranges from slightly faster to slightly slower than average. (Average range is roughly 0.8-1.0 second.)
Shutter lag, prefocus
0.177
Time to capture, after half-pressing shutter button. Average.
Cycle Time, max/min resolution

1.73 / 1.47

First number is for large/fine files, second number is time for "TV" mode (640x480) images. Times are averages. In both modes, shoots this fast continuously, and clears the buffer almost immediately. Average. Significant though, in that there's no buffer limit, all shots are this fast. (Times measured with Lexar 32x SD card, slower cards may introduce buffer limits or buffer clearing delays.)
Cycle Time, continuous mode, max/min resolution 0.33
(3.0 fps)
Times are averages. Shoots this fast continuously, regardless of resolution, and clears the buffer almost immediately. VERY impressive, that it's this fast, with no buffer capacity limitation. (Times recorded with Lexar 32x SD card, slower cards may limit maximum run lengths.)

Average shutter response and cycle time, impressive continuous shooting performance. In most respects, the Epson L-500V turned in an average performance, with shutter lag and cycle times very much in the average range. The one notable exception was its continuous-mode shooting speed, with the camera able to capture shots at an uninterrupted pace of 3 frames/second until the memory card ran out of space. (Note though, that our tests were done with fairly fast Lexar SD cards. Slower cards may result in shorter sequences of shots before the camera has to wait for the memory card to catch up with it.)

 

Power

The Epson L-500V uses a custom rechargeable LiIon battery for power. Note: Testing at specified 3.4V failed. Testing at 3.6V partially successful.

Operating Mode
Power
(@3.6 volts on the external power terminal)
Est. Minutes
(1230 mA LiIon cell)
Capture Mode, w/LCD
787 mA
96
Half-pressed shutter w/LCD
792 mA
96
Memory Write (transient)
833 mA
n/a
Flash Recharge (transient)
(couldn't test)
n/a
Image Playback
360 mA
210

Somewhat limited battery life. With a worst-case run time of only 96 minutes, the Epson L-500v's battery life is on the short side of average. I highly recommend purchasing a second battery along with the camera, and keeping it charged to bring along on extended outings.

 

Storage Capacity

The Epson L-500V stores its photos on SD / MMC memory cards, and a 16 MB card is included with the camera. (I strongly recommend buying at least a 128 MB card, preferably a 256 MB one, to give yourself extra space for extended outings.) The chart below shows how many images can be stored on the included 16 MB card at each size/quality setting.

Image Capacity vs
Resolution/Quality
16 MB Memory Card
Fine Normal
Basic
2560 x 1920 Images
(Avg size)
9
1.7 MB
15
1.0 MB
23
680 KB
Approx.
Compression
9:1 15:1 22:1
1600 x 1200 Images
(Avg size)
24
663 KB
38
414 KB
56
281 KB
Approx.
Compression
8:1 14:1 21:1
640 x 480
Images
(Avg size)
120
132 KB
193
83 KB
241
66 KB
Approx.
Compression
7:1 11:1
14:1

 

 

Download Speed

The Epson L-500V connects to a host computer via a USB interface. Downloading files to my Sony desktop running Windows XP (Pentium IV, 2.4 GHz), I clocked it at 4491 KBytes/second. (Cameras with slow USB interfaces run as low as 300 KB/s, cameras with fast v1.1 interfaces run as high as 600 KB/s. Cameras with USB v2.0 interfaces run as fast as several megabytes/second.)

 

L500V Review
L500V Test Images
L500V Specifications
L500V "Picky Details"
Up to Imaging Resource digital cameras area

 

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