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September 25, 2006

Photokina 2006 Updates T Minus 1

With one day to go before the official opening of Photokina 2006, a last burst of announcements has hit the streets.

First off - the big news that many of our members have been waiting for - the Fujifilm S5 Pro Digital SLR has been announced. While not a complete product offering, the fact that it's in the queue has relieved much anxiety over the S3 Pro's successor.

Olympus took the covers off their E-1P prototype DSLR as well, but fans here will have to wait as this too was a product development announcement.

Canon has jumped on the "me-too" image tank bandwagon with the M30/80 series portable photo storage. Featuring a 3.7" TFT wide-angle viewing screen, CF/SD slots and kudos to the manufacturer - the ability to share BP-511 batteries with the Digital Rebel and EOSD series cameras.

In software news, Bibble 4.9 is released, with the much requested cloning/healing tool and Nikon D80 RAW support. Light Crafts Inc. updates LightZone to version 2.0 in beta format. Our friends at Nik Software have bundled all three of their popular programs; Color Efex 2.0 (Complete Edition), Sharpener Pro 2.0 and Dfine 1.0 into the Nik Professional Suite. And just hot off the presses, DxO Labs announced the immediate availability of DxO Optics Version 4 for the PC.

On the business front, it appears Leica is making moves into the medium and large format segment with it's majority share purchase into Jenoptik's Sinar division - known for it's manufacture of digital backs. No immediate plans were announced other than "This is a first step on the strategic path towards growing the business of Leica Camera AG," said the firm.

And the strange-but-true: Olympus reveals a digital camera body made entirely of cypress wood to showcase it's advances in molding technology. While stylish and unique, one would have to wonder how sturdy such an item would be. The good news - it would float on water...

Posted by covey22 at September 25, 2006 4:29 PM