DigitalCameraReview.com
Digital Camera News, 1/22/08
by David Rasnake -  1/22/2008

Tamron 70-300 now available for Nikon D40/D40x

In a press release yesterday, aftermarket lens manufacturer Tamron announced the release of its popular telephoto macro AF 70-300mm F/4-5.6 Di LD Macro lens in Nikon mount with a built-in focusing motor.

Tamron 70-300

The addition of onboard focus drive means the new version of the wide-range lens now provides full aufo-focus support for Nikon's entry-level D40 and D40x digital SLRs. The D40 and D40x are designed without the older, body-mounted focusing motor, meaning full AF support requires a lens with an onboard motor.

The updated lens, which should beginning shipping this week, is priced at $189.

BenQ shows off the world's thinnest 8 MP cam

We're generally pretty jaded about camera offerings from global electronics conglomerate BenQ, but just about any digital camera with decent specs that's only 9.8mm thick is likely to get at least a brief moment of our attention.

BenQ X800

The BenQ DC X800 is being promoted by the company as the world's thinnest 8 megapixel camera. The specs sheet is reasonably respectable as well, with a 3x optical zoom, a 3-inch LCD, and an Auto Face Tracking face detection system providing the major talking points. The X800 also has personal media player capabilities built in.

BenQ X800

We doubt the X800 will be winning awards for image quality, but we've been pleasantly surprised by lesser devices before, and the overall sleekness may garner some interest independent of how the device performs as a camera. No word on pricing, but expect a release date in the first quarter of this year.

FotoNation offers chromatic aberration solution for budget cameras

PMA Newsline is reporting that imaging technology development outfit FotoNation, a company most widely known for licensing face detection and other chip-side technologies to camera manufacturers, intends to demo a one-step fix for chromatic aberration at PMA next week.

FotoNation's ChromaFix is designed to combat chromatic aberration or "purple fringing" – the electric-bright fringe that often shows up in high-contrast areas of digital images. Chromatic aberration is particularly common in compact cameras, a byproduct of complicated lens systems using less expensive optics.

ChromaFix promises to provide a cost-effective solution, meaning improved image performance in this area could be finding its way into the devices where it's most needed – budget compacts and even cell phone cams – in the near future. The before-and-after images from FotoNation certainly show impressive improvement, and we'll be interested to see this one in action next week.

For more information, read the full article here.