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Hewlett-Packard's Photosmart 850 digital camera. Courtesy of Hewlett-Packard, with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. HP announces new 4mpix, 8x zoom digicam (UPDATED)
By Michael R. Tomkins, The Imaging Resource
(Tuesday, September 24, 2002 - 17:33 EDT)

Hewlett-Packard Co. has today announced a new digital camera model at Photokina in Cologne, Germany.

The HP PhotoSmart 850 digital camera follows in the footsteps of past "slr-style" digicams from the company, this time featuring a 4 megapixel imager and a Fuji 8x optical zoom lens at a price of US$555 (list) / $500 (street). The camera doesn't feature a true optical viewfinder, instead offering a large 2" LCD display and an Electronic Viewfinder. Storage is catered for with a Secure Digital / MultiMediaCard slot, and the camera also has USB and video out connectivity. Shutter speeds range from 16 to 1/2000 second, with ISO ratings limited to a choice of ISO 100 or 200.

More details can be found in the specifications and press release below, courtesy of HP. (Our apologies for the low resolution images, which are all we've been able to obtain thus far). The company also simultaneously announces two new scanners and a new printer in the release.

HP PhotoSmart 850
HP's PhotoSmart 850 digital camera. Courtesy of Hewlett-Packard Co., with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins. Click for a bigger picture!
Image Quality
2384 x 1734 total pixels; 2280 x 1720 effective pixels; 2272 x 1712 recorded pixels
Lens System Fuji Photo Optical Co. Ltd., Autofocus, 8x Optical Zoom 7.6 - 61mm, F2.8 - 3.1
Focal Range ~500 mm to infinity (wide), ~900 mm to infinity (telephoto), ~100 mm - 700 mm (macro wide)
Picture Mode Portrait, landscape
Viewfinder / Single Lens Reflex (SLR) Micro display - SLR type through the lens
Imaging Technology AE, EV Comp, Shutter priority, Aperture Priority, Picture Modes (Action, Portrait, Landscape), White Balance (Sun, Shade, Florescent, Tungsten, Manual), Metering (spot, CW, average)
Image Control Functions Color (Color, black and white, Sepia)
Memory Card Compatibility SD/MMC (Secure Digital/Multi Media)
Manual Controls
Exposure Rating ISO 100, 200, automatic, manual
Exposure Control AE, EV Compensation (+/-3 in 1/2 EV stops), Exposure Mode (Auto (default), Action, Landscape, Portrait, Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority), White Balance (Auto (default), Sun, Shade, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Manual), AE Metering (Average, Center-Weighted (default), Spot), ISO Speed (Auto (default), ISO 100, ISO 200), Color (Full Color (default), Black and White, Sepia), Resolution (4MP - 2272x1712 (default), 1MP - 1136x848), Compression (***Best, **Better (default), *Good)
Shutter Speed 16 to 1/2000 sec
Zoom Capability 56x (8x Optical, 7x digital)
Flash Flash modes (Auto, On, Off, Red eye, Night, Night with red eye)
Focus Normal, macro
Shooting Mode Single shot still, self-timer, burst mode, movie (video clip) mode
LCD Display 5 cm (2in) LCD PolySilicon TFT, Cold cathode backlit display for capture, instant review, and review of photos. Electronic viewfinder with eye start and diopter adjust for capture and instant review only, 557 x 234 = 130,338 dots
LCD Status information not available
Sound Capture 30 sec
Interface SD card slot, USB cable standard mini-b; Dock connector to HP unique dock; Type 1 AC in power connector; AV stereo jack
Connectivity, optional USB cable, HP Photosmart 8881 Digital Camera Dock, AC adapter, AV cable
Power Supply 4 AA batteries: Photo Lithium (lithium-iron disulfide), Alkaline, or Ni-MH, AC adapter, optional dock
Compatible Operating Systems Microsoft® Windows 98, Me, 2000 Professional, XP Professional, XP Home Edition; Mac OS 9.1 and higher, OS X 10.1.2 and higher
System Requirements, Minimum Pentium® II processor, Celeron® or compatible; 64 MB RAM, 300 MB free hard disk space, SVGA 800 x 600 16-bit color display, CD-ROM drive, USB port, Microsoft® Windows 98, 2000 Professional, Me, XP Professional or XP Home Edition; HP Memories Disc Creator software requires CD writer and 700 MC additional hard disk space
Software Included CD with HP Photo & Imaging software for Microsoft® Windows® and Macintosh, with HP Share-to-Web software and HP Memories Disc Creator; ArcSoft Panorama Maker for Microsoft® Windows® and Macintosh
Dimensions / Weight / Warranty
Dimensions (w x d x h) 4.5 x 3.3 x 3.3 in
Weight 0.856 lb
Warranty, std. One-year limited hardware warranty; One-year phone support
More Photos
HP's PhotoSmart 850 digital camera. Courtesy of Hewlett-Packard Co., with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins.
HP's PhotoSmart 850 digital camera. Courtesy of Hewlett-Packard Co., with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins.
HP's PhotoSmart 850 digital camera. Courtesy of Hewlett-Packard Co., with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins.
HP's PhotoSmart 850 digital camera. Courtesy of Hewlett-Packard Co., with modifications by Michael R. Tomkins.

UPDATED 2002-09-25 13:54ET: Larger picture added.
Source: Hewlett-Packard Co.

Original Source Press Release:

HP Unveils Latest Digital Imaging Products, Including Industry's First Scanner with Automatic Photo Feeder

New Scanners, Digital Camera and Photo Printer Make It Easy for Consumers to Digitally Capture, Share and Print

HP (NYSE:HPQ) today announced two new scanners, an 8x optical zoom digital camera and a compact photo printer that provide simple and innovative ways to capture, print, share and receive digital images. Among the new products is the industry's first scanner to feature an automatic photo feeder, which allows consumers to quickly and easily digitize traditional photos by scanning a stack of 4 x 6-inch or 3 x 5-inch photos.

Bringing electronic organization to shoeboxes full of photos, the HP Scanjet 5500c scanner allows users to scan a stack of up to 24 photos, the same number of photos in a typical roll of film, by simply placing them in the feeder and pressing a single button. Users also can view scanned images in about seven seconds(1) -- no warm-up time required.

Three other products join HP's line of digital imaging products, including the HP Scanjet 4570c scanner; the HP Photosmart 230 photo printer -- featuring a convenient LCD screen for previewing and editing photos prior to printing; and the HP Photosmart 850 digital camera with manual controls and HP Instant Share technology.

"In June of this year, HP unveiled its $1.2 billion investment to reset the printing and imaging market. Today's announcement illustrates the ongoing results of that investment and sets the stage for products that are yet to come," said Jeff Hopper, vice president of marketing, HP Digital Imaging Organization. "With innovations like the automatic photo feeder on our scanner, an LCD screen on our compact photo printer and innovative manual controls on our digital cameras, HP is offering simple and convenient features that make it easy to capture, share and print."

"We have found that 89 percent of scanner owners scan photos and 47 percent of Internet households print digital photos at home," said Kerry Flatley, research analyst, InfoTrends Research Group. "HP's solutions are designed to help simplify the scanning and photo printing process at a time when digital imaging is playing a more significant role in consumers' lives."

HP Scanjet 5500c and 4570c Scanners

The HP Scanjet 5500c and 4570c scanners have seven, one-touch buttons for convenient access to features such as a share-to-Web option, HP Memories Disc Creator software for creating photo CDs to be viewed on a PC or DVD player, copy center functions and e-mailing. Consumers can get professional-quality scans with up to 2,400 dots-per-inch (dpi) and 48-bit color for printing, e-mailing and posting on the Web.

To convert from traditional film to digital format and for easy archiving, a lighted adapter is included with each scanner, which allows consumers to scan 35 mm negatives and slides. The automatic photo feeder is included with the HP Scanjet 5500c scanner and is optional for the HP Scanjet 4570c scanner.

HP Photosmart 230 Photo Printer

The compact HP Photosmart 230 photo printer produces borderless, 4 x 6-inch prints. The printer provides professional-looking output with crisp detail and vibrant colors on HP premium photo papers, featuring up to 4,800-optimized dpi.(2)

In addition, the printer lets users preview and edit photos prior to printing with a 1.8-inch color LCD screen. Users can print directly from the digital camera -- no computer is needed -- via the printer's memory card slots, which support Compact Flash, Memory Stick, MultiMedia, Secure Digital and SmartMedia.

The HP Photosmart 230 photo printer follows the recent introduction of the company's new line of photo printers, including the HP Photosmart 7550, 7350, 7150 and 130 models.

HP Photosmart 850 Digital Camera

The HP Photosmart 850 digital camera offers customers the choice between using automatic or manual controls for freedom to select camera settings for ISO, exposure, white balance and aperture. The digital camera produces outstanding close-ups and brilliant photos, featuring 4.1-megapixel total resolution and 56x total zoom (8x optical, 7x digital). The electronic viewfinder enables consumers to enhance the framing of photos through the lens viewing.

The digital camera also features HP Instant Share technology, which allows users to snap a photo and then select on the camera where the photo will go the next time the camera is connected to a computer or optional HP Photosmart 8881 digital camera dock.

All of the new products introduced today include HP photo and imaging software, which allows users to conveniently and easily edit, create and print photos, including photo album pages.

Price and Availability

The HP Scanjet 5500c scanner, HP Scanjet 4570c scanner, HP Photosmart 230 photo printer and HP Photosmart 850 digital camera are expected to begin shipping in early October. All products will be available at hpshopping.com and retail outlets nationwide.

Estimated U.S. street prices(3) are as follows:

HP Scanjet 5500c scanner (includes photo feeder) $299
HP Scanjet 4570c scanner $199
HP Scanjet automatic photo feeder (optional for HP Scanjet 4570c) $199
HP Photosmart 230 photo printer $249
HP Photosmart 850 digital camera $499
HP Photosmart 8881 digital camera dock $79.99

About HP

HP is a leading global provider of products, technologies, solutions and services to consumers and businesses. The company's offerings span IT infrastructure, personal computing and access devices, global services and imaging and printing. HP completed its merger transaction involving Compaq Computer Corp. on May 3, 2002. More information about HP is available at http://www.hp.com.

(1) Preview time is based on using a 1.7 GHz PC with 256 MB RAM.

(2) 4,800x1,200-optimized dpi color printing on premium photo papers when printing from a computer and 1,200 x 1,200-input dpi.

(3)Actual prices may vary.

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