Minolta DiMAGE X20 Review

Steve's Digicams

Features & Controls

The DiMAGE X20 employs the same revolutionary f/2.8-3.7 3X "folded" optical zoom lens that first appeared on the DiMAGE X and has since been used on the DiMAGE Xi and Xt cameras. It has a focal length coverage of 37mm - 111mm in 35mm format and is constructed of all glass with 10 elements in 9 groups (including two double-sided aspheric elements). An automatic protective cap closes over the lens when it is powered down.

Minolta DiMAGE X20
Minolta's legendary expertise in optical lens design has led to the creation of a unique compact folded 3x optical zoom lens with a depth of only 0.8 inches. By using a high quality prism that folds the optical path, the entire lens is positioned vertically within the body. This efficient optical design requires only a small zooming motor, allowing for quick and quiet focal length changes.

Auto focus is handled with a Wide Area focus using a 5-point AF system. The focus range is from a very close 3.9 inches (10cm) to infinity.

A new feature for the "X" series is the self-portrait mirror on the front. You choose the Self-Portrait function from the camera menu and then hold the camera at arm's length and frame the shot using the small mirror next to the lens. If you look closely you'll see me hiding behind my Nikon 4500 as I take the picture.

Minolta DiMAGE X20

The built in flash offers Auto, Fill-flash, Red-eye reduction and Night Portrait modes, it recycles in approximately 5 seconds. The flash range is approximately 0.8 - 9.5 feet (0.25-2.9m) in Wide angle and from approximately 0.8 - 7.5 feet (0.25-2.3m) in Telephoto (Camera sensitivity: ISO 200)

Minolta DiMAGE X20

Controls are minimal and simple. Along the top is the Mode Switch to select either the still or movie recording mode. The 4-way controller serves as the zoom lens control by using the center Up and Down switch. In Playback mode this also controls the zoomed image and index functions. The 4-way controller is also used to navigate the menu system and to select images in playback. The MENU button calls up the onscreen menu system. On the bottom is the Play/Review button, press it to view the stored still images or movies.

See the page three for a description of the onscreen menu displays.

Minolta DiMAGE X20

On top is the ON / OFF switch and the Shutter Release.

Minolta DiMAGE X20

On the top of the right side is a single I/O port for connecting either the Audio/Video cable (selectable NTSC or PAL video format) or the USB 1.1 data cable.

On the bottom is the DC IN jack for the optional AC power supply or an external battery pack.

Minolta DiMAGE X20

The DiMAGE X20 is equipped with a SD/MMC card slot and is compatible with any size Secure Digital or MultiMedia Card. The camera ships with a 8MB SD card.

Storage capacity with supplied 8MB SD card: (1600 x 1200) Economy: approx. 22, Standard: approx. 12, Fine: approx. 6, Movie: (320 x 240) 19 seconds, (160 x 120) 74 seconds (Numbers above are approx., and may vary depending on the subject.)

Minolta DiMAGE X20

The camera is powered by two standard AA type batteries. We strongly recommend the use of high-capacity NiMH rechargeable batteries. Minolta claims it has the capacity to record 110 pictures (half with flash) and has a 260 minute playback capability when using alkaline type batteries. This camera has no optical viewfinder, you must use the LCD monitor full time so it's important to use powerful batteries.

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