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Dennis Hissink : February 17th 2005 - 12:00 CET

Canon MVX40 digital video camera introduction

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CanonCanon MVX40 digital video camera introduction : Canon releases a new optical image stabilizer digital video camera, the 2.2 Megapixel 10x zoom MVX40. Drawing on Canon's heritage in digital still camera development, the new Canon MVX40 digital video camera incorporates many advanced digital still camera features, functions and effects that surpass that of many purpose-built digital cameras. The new model features 16:9 widescreen mode, built in stills flash, and Super Bright 2.5-inch colour LCD screen. The new Canon MVX40 digital video camera utilises an RGB primary filter and Canon's powerful DIGIC DV for superb colour reproduction and accurate tonal gradation.
Canon MVX40 digital video camera introductionThe Canon MVX40 also features an USB 2.0 Hi-Speed interface for fast transfer of Motion JPEGs and JPEGs from SD and MMC memory cards, a slot for which is found in the new model.

Each is PictBridge compliant and features a Print/Share button for simple PC-less printing of digital stills direct to compatible photo printers, and PC/internet uploads. Beautifully sculptured ergonomics include flush switches, recessed buttons and super-compact bodies, expected to appeal to consumers demanding feature-rich products with superior finish quality and design.

"Many of the world's television images are brought to us through Canon's broadcast lenses, and many of the world's newspaper images are brought to us by Canon pro camera systems," said Mogens Jensen, Head of Canon Consumer Imaging, Europe. "It is our heritage in both these areas that gives rise to the MVX40: a superbly specified optical image stabilized digital video camera that also incorporates a fully featured digital still camera. The Canon MVX40 offers the ultimate freedom in audio visual expression."

The inclusion of 2.2 Megapixel resolution and optical image stabilisation in such a compact digital video camera is anticipated by Canon to create strong demand for the two models. Utilising 1.77 effective Megapixels in 4:3 mode and 1.33 effective Megapixels in 16:9 mode, the Canon MVX40 digital video camera produces stunning image quality normally associated with much higher-end models.

Canon's engineers have drawn on over 60 years of precision optics experience to incorporates 10x (MVX40) optical glass zoom lens that contains an aspheric element for sharp, high contrast footage, without the aberrations caused by low quality lenses. Optical Image Stabilizer suppresses frustrating image shake, keeping footage calm, steady and pleasurable to watch. It is so effective at eliminating image shake that it renders tripod use unnecessary in most shooting situations. Unlike Electronic Image Stabilization, Optical Image Stabilization allows full use of the sensor's potential when shooting in wide screen 16:9 mode, and can also be used to suppress blur when shooting digital stills.

A manual focus ring allows precise control over focus, ideal for carefully composed stills or for shooting footage when a subject is moving across the frame.

Digital Still features
The digital video camera’s digital still functionality is made possible by the power of the DIGIC DV image processor that provides true split path processing for both video and digital stills, allowing simultaneous recording of both media. 2.2 Megapixel resolution delivers still images suitable for high quality album prints. A Mode Dial that looks very similar to that found on Canon cameras allows selection of a range of digital still and movie modes, including Auto, aperture and shutter priority, Sports, Night, Landscape and Slow Shutter. It also provides access to six 'Special Scene' modes including Snow, Fireworks, Sunset and Beach, designed to give great results in tricky lighting conditions.

A function button gives access to image effects such as Vivid (increases colour saturation), Neutral, (limits contrast and colour depth for more subtle colours), Low Sharpening (for a 'soft focus' effect) and Soft Skin Detail (smoothes blemishes and irregularities in skin tones).

The same 9-point AiAF found in Canon's high end digital still compact cameras helps keep images and video sharply in focus, even with off-centre subjects, and sophisticated light metering modes (evaluative, centre weighted average and spot) and exposure bracketing are available to help get perfect exposures. It is also possible to shoot up to 60 frames at 5fps in a single continuous burst, a feature very few cameras are capable of achieving.

A photo review function increases picture taking and sharing enjoyment by allowing users to extend display of the last image taken simply by holding down the shutter release button. Direct printing of favourite images to any PictBridge compatible photo printer is made extremely simple with the inclusion of a Print/Share button, which lights as soon as connection is established with the printer.

The large 2.5-inch LCD features an anti-reflection (AR) coating to improve visibility under direct sunlight. An external button allows users to switch immediately to Super Bright mode, which improves visibility when shooting outdoors or in otherwise bright conditions.

Extra optical features
To prevent white clipping (loss of differentiation in the brightest whites) that can occur when shooting in bright conditions (such as beach or snow), the new Canon MVX40 features a double neutral density (ND) filter. To keep footage and images sharp, crisp and true in all shooting situations, Super Spectra coatings are applied to each lens element to eliminate internal reflections that can cause ghosting (secondary images of bright light sources such as candles at birthday parties) and flare (washing out effect that is often noticed in summer holiday footage).

Internet sharing of clips and footage has been simplified with the capacity to record Motion-JPEG movies direct to the MMC or SD memory cards. In-camera conversion of footage stored on tape into Motion-JPEG compression and transfer to MMC or SD card is supported. Depending on memory card capacity, up to 60 minutes of Motion JPEG can be recorded straight to card. Purchase of a MVX40 series digital video camera entitles the owner to free Canon iMAGE GATEWAY (CiG) membership: 100MB of free space for online sharing of digital stills and MPEG clips. Rather than sending large video clips or images as email attachments, users can upload their favourite material to their own secure galleries on CiG and use a site facility to send gallery links to family and friends.

Two-way communication software DV Messenger 2.0 (available for free for download from combines elements of Microsoft Windows Messenger and Canon's own network solution. It provides two-way (peer-to-peer) communication while also enabling the exchange of audio and video data, live or recorded, over the Internet. It allows the digital video camera to be used as a web cam for video chat and remote control the unit via the Internet.

The digital video camera is equipped with both DV and USB terminals. The USB terminal is used for fast and simple uploading of video clips and still images from the digital video camera’s memory card.

Multi Language Display
The menu display can be set from a selection of 8 languages: English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Japanese and Simplified Chinese.

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