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Ricoh Caplio G3s digital camera introduction
Dennis Hissink : August 5th 2003 - 23:18 CET
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RicohRicoh Caplio G3s digital camera introduction : Ricoh announced the Caplio G3 model S – in short G3s. Sales in Europe begin in July. The magnesium alloy housing for the Caplio G3s which is an innovative, robust and light material has been created by an injection mould system. A striking feature is the extremely short shutter response time of 0.14 seconds with which the Caplio G3s surpasses even traditional miniature cameras thus placing it in the top position in this camera category (As from 1 February 2003 for all auto-focus digital cameras. Shutter response time is measured as the delay from the time the shutter release button is fully depressed until exposure starts in auto-focus function without using focus lock).
Ricoh Caplio G3s digital camera introductionRicoh Caplio G3s - Shutter
The Ricoh Caplio G3s is a refined version of its sister model Caplio G3 which itself was built on the success of the revolutionary Caplio RR30 and which had already set a new shutter response time record of 0.22 seconds in autumn 2003. With its well-rounded, elegant shape, the Caplio G3s fits especially well in the hand of the photographer which is a contributing factor enabling fast and reliable reaction to sudden photographic opportunities.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Software
The integrated memo functions are further useful features of the Caplio G3s. More or less every digital camera user will have experienced frustration when searching for photos from the masses of images on the computer. The Caplio G3s remedy is for the user to classify his shots in simple-to-create categories which can be supplied with texts. Using the "Ricoh Gate La" software, the text commentaries and categories can not only be created on the computer and transferred to the camera but can also be edited, searched for and printed. In addition, temporary texts can be entered with the aid of a display keyboard.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Battery
As regards power supply, the user of the Caplio G3s can choose between two normal alkali-manganese batteries or NiMH rechargeable batteries of round cell size as well as an additionally obtainable lithium-ion battery with which hundreds of shots can be taken with one recharge. In addition, the camera can be operated with a power pack connected to a socket.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - CCD image sensor
The unique macro-setting up to a distance of 1 cm, the CCD image sensor with 3.24 megapixels effective resolution and the triple optical zoom range plus an additional 3.4 digital zoom ensure that impressive photos can taken in the most varying photographic situations. In order to analyse fast movements, the Caplio G3s provides the M-serial function by which the last sixteen serial images before releasing the shutter button are automatically combined to form a complete picture. Moving pictures with sound up to 120 seconds long can be recorded in AVI format.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - High sensitivity
The high sensitivity function of the Caplio G3s simplifies the choice of trimmed area and image shaping when dealing with dark motifs by strongly brightening the monitor image. It is also advantageous that the files of the images shot can be transferred quickly and simply to a computer with a USB interface using the computer software provided with the camera.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Magnesium alloy body
The housing of the Caplio G3s is produced from a durable magnesium alloy using the injection mould technique; the camera therefore rates as one of the most robust models on the market. It is striking not only because of its unique shape and sophisticated finish but also because of its stylish appearance and comfortable handling.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Short release time
Due to its very short release time lag of just 0.14 seconds, the Caplio G3s removes the problem of slow reaction which is an obvious disadvantage of many other current digital cameras. The speed of the Caplio G3s is based on the hybrid auto-focus system which combines the advantages of external sensors with precision measurement through the lens. Starting with the impressively short 1/2000 sec. and reaching eight seconds of long-time exposure, the camera offers a suitable shutter time interval for all motifs ranging from action photos to night photography.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Zoom
From beginners to experts, all users will get wonderful, colour fidelity shots with the high-quality CCD image sensor of the Caplio G3s. The triple zoom range of the objective lens has advantages for picture creation. In combination with the digital zoom function, this gives an enlargement factor of 10.2 with which a small trimmed area from the motif can be brought into the picture in enlarged form.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Battery
If the optional lithium-ion battery is used, the Caplio G3s can take up to 3500 pictures (A maximum of 3500 photos in low-current mode (flash off, without zooming, LCD off, with VGA); up to 350 shots in normal conditions of use, with 50% flash and zoom use, LCD on, 30 sec. between shots, previews of all photos) without a change of batteries. A further speciality is the choice between the lithium-ion battery, two alkali-manganese batteries or two nickel metal hydride batteries (round cell size) as energy sources. If photos are often taken close to a power connection, the power pack provided as an accessory can be useful.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Close-up range
One of the exceptional advantages of the Caplio G3s is the close-up range of up to 1 cm. Whether blossoms, a diamond ring or miniature products – the smallest details that are scarcely visible to the naked eye, appear as an enlarged image therefore making photography an exciting experience. Going beyond the zoom area, the close-up range is between 1 cm and 16 cm; the integrated flash can even be used up to 16 cm.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - M & S serial image
In the M and S serial image functions, the camera can take 16 photos in intervals of 0.13 sec. and can store these images put together as one picture. With the M function these are the last 16 shots taken before the shutter button is released. This is particularly useful if the chronological order of a movement is not foreseeable. With the S-function the images are recorded immediately after the shutter release button has been pressed. During projection the photos can be enlarged individually – the 16 images can be scrolled quickly forwards or backwards giving the impression of animation. Procedures involving motion such as teeing-off in golf are just some of the many movements that can be excellently analysed. With the standard serial image function normal photos are taken at intervals of 0.3 sec. if the shutter button is pressed.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Memory
In order to determine optimal exposure, the Caplio G3s sets the brightness of the image at 256 different positions. There is also a choice between centre-weighted and selective metering (spot). In tricky situations automatic series exposures can be made. The Caplio G3 is equipped with 8 MB internal memory and also has a slot for Secure Digital Memory Cards. These are extremely compact memory cards that retain information without an energy supply and allow fast and simple downloading of image files. The camera also accepts multimedia cards. This function enables energy to be saved. The monitor remains switched off until the shutter button or a zoom button for the image preview (monitor live image) has been pressed. After the photograph has been taken, the monitor remains switched on for several seconds for image control.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Playback function
With many digital cameras, a change to the playback function must take place in order to check a photo immediately after it has been taken. With the Caplio G3 Quick View function, however, the last photo can be viewed by simply pressing a button. This quick view function can be used in all photographic functions. The Caplio G3 offers six motif functions: portrait, sport, scenery, night scenes, text and high sensitivity. These motif programs ensure ideal results in any photographic situation.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Movie
In cases where moving pictures are of more significance than photos, the Caplio G3s can record film scenes up to 120 seconds long in AVI format. Photos can still be complemented by spoken commentaries of 8 seconds and the digital camera can even be used as a dictation machine.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Difficult exposure
In difficult exposure situations - for example with strong contrasts – automatic serial exposures from three slightly differently exposed images taken in direct succession – can help to create an ideal photo. A similar function can be used for colour balance whereby images are created with "normal", slightly warmer and colder colour rendition respectively.

Ricoh Caplio G3s - Surface shape
The architect and industrial designer Masayuki Kurokawa developed the surface shape of the Caplio G3s in cooperation with Ricoh designers. The practicability and at the same time attractive form of the magnesium injection mould housing was a result of exact observation of how items such as pencils, drinking vessels or traditional cameras were held in the hand. This resulted in the rounded-off form of the camera which fits very comfortably and firmly in the hand and is thus geared to meet the daily challenges to equipment that photographers have to endure. Available from the middle of July 2003 with a non-binding price recommendation of 329 Euro.

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