Kodak announced the DX6490 at the end of August 2003, the camera is available since November. At the introduction Kodak has put forward the Schneider optical zoom lens and put emphasis on the high performance of the innovative Kodak Color Science chip. In practice it shows that these features indeed prove their value. The camera offers a good image in the most easy way. The colours are vivid and the clearness of detail from the used optical zoom offers a clear rich contrast image. The 4 megapixel resolution is more than sufficient to guarantee a photo realistic print. Kodak has tried to lift up the DX6490 to a higher level using high quality segments. In general Kodak has delivered a valuable piece of work. A few things stay behind, like the speed the camera needs to focus in telephoto mode, positioning of various buttons. On the field of speed the Kodak DX6490 could still do with some improvements.
As a whole the concept is convincing, the functions are all there and give the camera a higher status. The way the camera is able to take an image under very difficult light conditions is impressive and compared with other manufacturers it can be called high quality. The size of the monitor, 2.2 inch, is a size I would like to see on more cameras and it is good to see Kodak promoting a larger size monitor. The EasyShare concept is solid as a rock and has already proven its value. Kodak itself has designed this concept and brought it out on the market, but it would not be wrong to also take in account and add to the concept the concepts of competing cameras and their proved values. The way the aperture and shutter speed is set manually is innovative but not necessarily improved. A more traditional way would be more adequate especially at a camera that seems to aim at the more advanced user should not be too 'Easy' with the traditional concept. Furthermore I would have liked to have seen a larger variety of settings, especially a larger selection of file size and compression (only available JPEG and a few compressions).
When we take a look at the total EasyShare concept, camera, docking station and printer station, we may say that it is a thoroughly thought through and effective concept. The EasyShare DX6490 is a camera that performs great within the concept and puts down the base for a new generation of high quality digital cameras. The camera has put the bar higher and aims at the advanced user. To my opinion it may be enhanced, more different settings and upgrading the USB 1.1 to USB 2.0 will be welcomed with open arms too. Beside that the video clip functions can be upgraded to a higher resolution so the EasyShare concept will feature a more complete multi-media experience. All in all a camera that offers an excellent photo quality, a large user's friendliness, the ideal camera for the starting photographer who wants a little more than just the standard photo.
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The camera is capable of taking 5 images one after the other, then the buffer is being emptied. When there is enough room in the buffer an image can be taken directly. When the camera is set to normal the time in between taking images will be approximately 2 seconds, activating the Continue Shooting function the time in between two images will be 0,3 second with a speed of 3 images per second. The camera has four different photo qualities, one in a ratio of 3:2. More often we see the phenomenon of the manufacturing deciding the selection of a certain compression. Not too inconvenient however the compression might work to the advantage of the file size but it doesn't always benefit the image quality. Kodak uses a strong compression and seems to be searching the limit of the right balance between quality and file size. Still I would have liked a bigger playground concerning the compression.
Considering a 128MB storage capacity:
Resolution 4 Megapixels - (2304x1728) - 96 images
Resolution 3.5 Megapixels - (3:2) - 119 images
Resolution 2.1 Megapixels - (1656x1242) - 179 images
Resolution 1.1 Megapixels - (1200x900) - 280 images
Resolution 320x240 pixels - 30fps - 8 minutes of video