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Kodak Announces Ultrazoom, 2 Compacts
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posted on Jul 30, 2009 at 3:48AM

Kodak Announces Ultrazoom, 2 Compacts

By Emily Raymond
  • 3 new cameras from Kodak
  • 12 megapixels
  • Smart Capture technology
(Credit: Kodak)

Kodak unveiled two new digital cameras in a press release today, and quietly debuted a third on its product web site. The ultra-zoom EasyShare Z950 and more basic compact EasyShare M381 took the spotlight, but the M341 also appeared as a new offering. All three cameras have 12 megapixels.

All three digital cameras come with plenty of resolution and Smart Capture technology typical of EasyShare models. They sport lots of automated features such as a scene recognition mode, and have more than a dozen scene modes to choose from.

Kodak EasyShare Z950
The Kodak EasyShare Z950 leads the pack with its 10x optical zoom lens and $279 price tag. It has a 35-350mm Schneider-Kreuznach Variogon optical zoom lens that has a maximum f/3.5 aperture. It sits below the $399 Z980, which has a 24x optical zoom lens, although the same 12 megapixels and 3-inch LCD monitor. Both ultra-zoom cameras also have HD video modes that shoot 1280 x 720-pixels at 30 frames per second.

The Z950 tries to appeal to beginners with its slogan – “Shoot like a pro, without knowing what an f-stop is.” But the ultra-zoom still has manual, priority, and program modes in addition to its 16 scene modes and automated features. The new Kodak EasyShare Z950 measures 4.3 x 2.6 x 1.4 inches and weighs 8.2 ounces without the card and battery. It is much more compact than the flagship Z980.

Kodak EasyShare M381 and M341
The M381 takes the place as the new flagship of the M-series. It comes in a slimmer body and nixes the manual operations for more basic automated features. Like the Z950, it has 12 megapixels, but it pairs that resolution with a much smaller 5x optical zoom lens. The cameras also have 3-inch LCD screens. On the Kodak web site, the company proclaims “easy upload to Facebook, YouTube or Kodak Gallery.” The EasyShare M381 will be available in September in black olive, light steel blue, and wine red colors for $189.

The Kodak M341 keeps the 12-megapixel resolution but downgrades the lens to a standard 3x version and shrinks the LCD screen to a still-respectable 2.7 inches. The automated modes are the same as the M381’s. For the few minor downgrades, the M341 will sell for $159 in September. It will be available in red, silver, pink orchid, black, and blue.


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