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CeBIT News: Konica Minolta lenses, SanDisk xD-Picture Card capacity, Pretec introduces new card format
by Ben Stafford -  3/10/2005

Konica Minolta, SanDisk, and Pretec have made announcements at CeBIT that are of interest to the digital imaging world.  CeBIT, held in Germany is the largest trade show in the world.  This year, there  6,270 exhibitors using 309,000 square meters of display area. 

Konica Minolta announces the development of "DT Lenses"

At CeBIT, Konica Minolta has announced their plans to develop a series of interchangeable lenses for the Dynax series digital SLR cameras, including the Dynax 7D (also known as the Maxxum 7D in the US).  They plan to create three lenses, the AF DT Zoom 18-70mm F3.5-5.6(D), the AF DT Zoom 11-18mm F4.5-5.6 (D), and the AF DT ZOOM 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 (D).  The lenses are expected to be availabe in the autumn of 2005.

One of Konica Minolta's goals is to develop both wide-angle lenses for APS-C format and conventional 35mm format lenses to reach a wide range of users.  Those users include photographers who need to take true wide angle shots, those that take pictures with a compact standard zoom, and those that like to take telephoto shots without have to change lenses.

Product Highlights (from press release):
- Gains an anti-shake blur correction effect* with a shutter speed 2 - 3 steps slower when used with the Dynax 7D.
- Enables high precision ADI flash metering* when mounted on the Dynax 7D by incorporating a distance encoder (distance information internally provided in lens).
- Beautiful defocused image thanks to a circular aperture. Using a round aperture enhances the defocused image with smooth gradations and depicts natural scenes perfectly.
* Anti-shake picture blur correction effect amount varies with shooting conditions **ADI (Advanced Distance Integration) flash metering

SanDisk announces 1 GB xD-Picture Cards

SanDisk has announced that they have doubled the capacity of the xD-Picture Cards to 1 GB.  Their announcement comes after the announcement of 10 digital cameras from Olympus and Fuji that will be compatible with the xD-Picture Card format.

The new cards will be shipping in April for a suggested retail of $139.99 in the US (pricing elsewhere has not been determined).  They plan for this "M" series of cards to increase in capacity to 8GB.  The cards will be sold in SanDisk packaging under Olympus and Fuji brand labels.

SanDisk xD picture card

PRETEC Techologies introduces C-Flash memory cards

The C-Flash memory cards will be the smallest form factor storage cards on the market.  Measuring 17mm x 12mm x 1.0 mm, they will be a third of the volume of miniSD cards.

Pretec is currently sending 128 MB samples to mobile phone manufacturers and expect to have 1GB cards avaiable in Q2 of 2005.  Pretec will offer adapters for SD, miniSD, MMC, RS-MMC, and USB to allow the C-Flash media to be used in existing devices. 

C-Flash