Sunday, May 9, 2010

Casio Exilim Z2000

Nothing much to talk about since last post. Spring Semester is over now. People are getting married. Have to shift to a new room by the end of this month. People are afraid to die. We are ignoring each other. Summer Research awaits! Yet people do die. Manifest summer has arrived. Should plan for the moving-out-event. There’ve been a bit too many earthquakes. Muted excitement with hypocrisy thrives well. Ok, she more than me. Went to The Store after a long time. People feel good (b(s(?))ad) after analyzing me. Mixing with groups without projecting yourself as a jerk is tough. I feel relieved after knowing we’ve still a long way to go!

Anyway, I bought a new camera mentioned in the title sometime in April. Some of its impressive features to me are:

  1. 14.1MegaPixels, 5x Optical zoom
  2. 3” super clear LCD screen
  3. EXILIM Engine 5.0
  4. Image Stabilization (both Hand shake & ‘Subject shake’)
  5. Premium Auto including other Best Shot (BS) scenes / modes
  6. Face/Smile Detection, Motion Detection, etc
  7. Intelligent Auto-Focus (iAF)
  8. Light-weight (~150g)

Let us look at what EX-Z2000 can do now. All the following photos are hyperlinked to original full-size ones which open in a new tab (if your browser supports tabs and if your browser settings are not too weird). [If you did not know that the hyperlinks in my posts except the end-of-the-post-link open in new tabs, I am not surprised! Also, if you think that all my posts have an end-of-the-post-link, you are not doing me any favours!] Or you can download them (by right-clicking on them and looking for an option close to ‘Save’ in the context menu) and look at them at leisure. Play around with them by zooming, cropping, etc if you have more than the standard time, usual mortals have. Here we go:

14MP at work

Charles B. Wang Center

5x Zoom at work

CBW Center

Most of these photos are shot in Auto mode. Some in Premium Auto (PA) mode which basically ‘recognizes’ other BS scenes and optimizes for the scene (like Portrait, Scenery, Macro, Greenery, Sky, etc) in front of the camera. The following are shot using PA mode and it shot them in Macro & Macro+Greenery modes. [The camera takes a while (~5-10 sec) after the image is shot to process it and save it to the memory card, though!]

Pink Flowers

Red Flowers

Zoom demo: Almost none –> Mid-way –> Full 5x

Sports Complex-Z1 Sports Complex-Z3 Sports Complex-Z5

Faithful colour reproduction

Staller Center

Staller Center-2(Auto) Staller Center-2(Premium Auto)

I do not have much experience (well, none!) at shooting photos but when it shows blueness of the sky and whiteness of the clouds while maintaining crispness of other colours, I say the camera is doing an awesome job. The lower twin photos are shot in Auto & PA modes respectively (from L to R!). You can form you own opinions about their qualities.

CCD Shift Stabilization at work

Tulip-1(S) Tulip-1(AS)

I’ve to admit CCD SS is on in both the photos but the thing to note is that the flower was swaying ‘violently’ (peak-to-peak amplitude: ~5cm) on the left and ‘modestly’ (peak-to-peak amplitude: ~2cm) on the right because it was windy that day. And the result is that the blur is ‘barely’ visible on the left while there is ‘none’ on the right! More photos of the tulips:

Tulips-1 Tulips-2

This is the view from my office in Math Tower.

View from MT6-117(1)

Stitching a couple of ‘well-shot’ photos is a breeze via MICE (Microsoft Image Composite Editor). Sadly, there is no built-in mode for stitching photos together on the camera itself. Other cameras (I think Panasonic, Sony, etc) have a Sweep Panorama mode which is really nice. [I think I’ll get one of those too!]

View from MT6-117(2)

View from MT6-117(3)

One stand-out BS mode is “Business cards and documents”:

Improper Map Proper Map

The idea is you take a shot of some document (like on the left) and the camera corrects for the angles, projections, etc and you get a ‘corrected’ rectangular photo (like on the right)! [Ok, I am cheating a bit here, the camera did not recognize the ‘correct’ right side boundary because it is not sharp enough compared to the other three boundaries so I cropped the photo manually.]

The web does not have the list of all the 40 Best Shot scenes / modes on EX-Z2000 (well, I could not find it!). So I’m going to put it here for those who may search for it while researching on cameras and also because it may increase the traffic on my blog (one of the blogger’s optimistic dreams). So here goes nothing:

  1. Auto
  2. Premium Auto
  3. Dynamic Photo
  4. Portrait
  5. Scenery
  6. Portrait with Scenery
  7. Children
  8. Sports
  9. Candlelight Portrait
  10. Party
  11. Pet
  12. Flower
  13. Natural Green
  14. Autumn Leaves
  15. Soft Flowing Water
  16. Splashing Water
  17. Sundown
  18. Night Scene
  19. Night Scene Portrait
  20. Fireworks
  21. Food
  22. Text
  23. Collection
  24. For eBay
  25. Backlight
  26. High Sensitivity
  27. Oil Painting
  28. Crayon
  29. Water Color
  30. Monochrome
  31. Retro
  32. Twilight
  33. Multi-motion Image
  34. ID Photo
  35. Business cards and documents
  36. White board, etc.
  37. Silent
  38. Prerecord (Movie)
  39. For YouTube
  40. Voice Recording

Now we settle into comparing-two-cameras mode. No external photo editing has been done in the following photos for comparison purposes. The comparison is between my ‘old’ camera, Casio Exilim Z4 (4MP with 3x zoom) and my ‘new’ camera, Casio Exilim Z2000 (14MP with 5x zoom). Click on these photos to compare them on your own.

Z2000-Scenery Z4-Scenery

Both these photos were shot via BS Scenery scene. The photo taken with Z2000 had its Image Quality set to Normal whereas Z4 had been set to Fine Image Quality. Do take note of at least these things: the colour of the sky, overall colour composition, details in the photo (you can actually read the license plate number on the black car in the right photo!) and the achievable level of zoom.

Z2000~3x Zoom Z4-3x Zoom

These are (roughly) 3x zoomed versions of the above photos. Do take note of the reducing clarity (graininess?) in Z4 already at the original size whereas Z2000 has not lost any yet. In fact, it does not loose much clarity even at 5x zoom.

That’s it for today. Quite a long post in quite a while. I will leave you with other photos I shot while going to my office from my apartment on a Sunday:

On-Campus Sites