Canon launches new product concept with the hybrid PowerShot S1 IS
Canon, leader in photographic and imaging technology, is pleased to announce the hybrid PowerShot S1 IS compact digital camera. A fully featured and well specified 3.2 Megapixel digital still camera with a 10x optical zoom, the PowerShot S1 IS is also a quality digital video camcorder, with capacity to shoot clear and natural video clips with 30 frames per second VGA resolution and high quality sound. It has an optical Image Stabiliser that limits blur in digital stills and keeps video footage steady. The 3.2 Megapixel sensor and Canon's image processing algorithms allow enlargements up to A4 in size without image degradation.
"This camera represents a significant development for Canon," said Malcolm Hills, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging in the UK and Ireland. "It has digital still capacity to rival many single purpose digital cameras and digital video quality that will delight many camcorder users. Canon's strengths in these two markets has driven a convergence of technologies to deliver an exciting new product concept".
The PowerShot S1 IS features an f/2.8 - f/3.1, 38-380 mm (35mm equivalent) zoom lens. Optional wide and tele-converters are available to extend the lens range from 26.6 mm up to 608 mm with the zoom being driven by a tiny ultrasonic motor (USM). The motor uses ultrasonic frequency vibrations to drive a tiny rotor that is fast, powerful and highly responsive. In digital still modes it drives the zoom at maximum speed, while in video mode it slows for a smooth effect and runs virtually silent, avoiding interference with video sound recording.
Optical Image Stabiliser
The PowerShot S1 IS features Canon's shift-type optical Image Stabiliser (IS) technology. IS significantly reduces the effects of camera shake, important with cameras such as the PowerShot S1 IS that have high magnification lenses. Tiny movement detection gyros and a correcting lens element counteract the effects of lens shake to deliver sharp images. The resulting compensation is the equivalent of between two and three extra stops, which means the camera can be used at slower shutter speeds without a tripod and without any detectable increase in image blur. With its combined large f/2.8 aperture and image stabilisation, the camera performs remarkably well in low light conditions.
True Movie Capability
Smooth, flicker free, clear and natural movie clips can be recorded to the camera's CF card in 30 frames per second VGA resolution. Furthermore, zoom, autofocus, auto exposure and auto white balance all work during movie shooting. A large “Movie” button on the rear of the camera provides quick and easy shooting. Footage of up to 60 minutes or 1GB can be recorded in a single shooting (at QVGA/15 fps mode).
Auto focus and exposure metering
The TTL auto-focus options have been designed with both the still photographer and camcorder user in mind, and include FlexiZone AF/AE point selection and AF lock. The camera has a closest focusing distance of 10cm (W) and 93cm (T). Exposure metering is selectable between Evaluative, Centre-weighted Average, and Spot (centre or linked to AF point).
Easy Review and flash
A vari-angle LCD allows easy framing from candid or high/low viewpoints. The camera's built in flash can be set to operate automatically, always on or always off. It features a red-eye reduction mode, flash exposure lock and second curtain synchronisation, often used in night photography to create an image of blurred lights trailing a moving, illuminated object.
Purpose built DIGIC processor
The PowerShot S1 IS uses Canon's DIGIC processor, the dedicated image processor now found in all Canon digital cameras up to the EOS 10D Digital SLR. By integrating all image processing algorithms onto a single chip, the purpose-built DIGIC processor has underpinned much of Canon's success in the digital camera market by delivering fast write times, minimal shutter lag, optimal image definition and consistently precise and natural colour reproduction. DIGIC also makes the camera highly responsive enabling it to display captured images almost immediately while Canon's iSAPS technology reads camera settings and environmental data to predict the most likely scene and make adjustments accordingly.
13 Shooting Modes
To cover every conceivable still and video shooting situation, the PowerShot S1 IS has 13 shooting modes and six photo effects. Shooting modes include Auto, Program, Shutter Speed Priority, Aperture Priority, Manual, Custom, Portrait, Landscape, Night Scene, Fast Shutter, Slow Shutter, Stitch Assist (for capturing panoramic scenes that can be merged using Canon's PhotoStitch software) and Movie. Photo effects include Sepia, Vivid, Low Sharpening, Black & White and Custom. The camera also has an interval timer function, capable of automatically taking a series of photos at regular intervals.
Shoot underwater adventures
An optional waterproof case allows the PowerShot S1 IS to be taken to a depth of 40m for digital stills and movie footage capture during activities such as surfing, diving, snorkelling and skiing.
Software and CANON iMAGE GATEWAY access
The software supplied with the PowerShot S1 IS includes ZoomBrowser EX (Windows) and ImageBrowser (Mac) for browsing and printing, PhotoStitch, and photo/movie manipulation software ArcSoft PhotoStudio and VideoImpression. Drivers are included for Windows 98/2000/Windows Me, while Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP) support allows the camera to connect to Windows XP and Mac OS X (v10.1/v10.2) operating systems without the need for driver installation.
Camera ownership entitles the purchaser to 100MB free storage space on CANON iMAGE GATEWAY, a password-protected online gallery where albums can be stored and shared and camera settings (such as shutter sounds and start up image) can be personalised.
Pricing, availability and reader enquiries
The PowerShot 1s IS will be available from March 2004 for £479 RRP inc. VAT.
Reader enquiries: 08705 143723 / www.canon.co.uk