Minolta DiMAGE F100 Review

Steve's Digicams

Full Review posted 05/17/02
First Look posted 04/02/02

Click on the DiMAGE F100 to take a QuickTime VR tour

The Minolta DiMAGE F100 is the world's first digital camera with Area autofocus (Area AF) and Subject Tracking autofocus (AF) and automatic digital subject program selection. It also features a 1/1.8-inch type CCD with 4-megapixel effective resolution and a 3x optical zoom Minolta GT LENS. Image processing is handled by Minolta's exclusive 12-bit A/D (analog to digital) conversion and CxProcess technology to optimize sharpness, color reproduction, tonal gradation and noise to create clear and natural images.

Advanced technology makes focusing on the DiMAGE F100 simple and effective. The DiMAGE F100's Subject Tracking AF and Area AF work together to locate and follow the subject through three-dimensional space within the camera's extra-wide focusing area, making the autofocus system ready to take a picture when you are. Simply activate the Area AF system with the shutter-release button and the camera evaluates the objects in the extra-wide focus frames and pinpoints the subject. If the subject moves, Subject Tracking AF will adjust the focus to ensure sharp image; the active AF sensor is displayed in the focus frames and will follow the subject movement.

The DIMAGE F100's Automatic Digital Subject Program Selection automatically selects one of five subject programs - portrait, sports action, landscape, sunset, or night portrait - to optimize the camera's exposure and image-processing controls based on the subject and scene. This frees the photographer from having to evaluate the conditions and make camera settings for each new situation.

Its stylish, slim aluminum body features an easy-to hold, elegant grip and ergonomic control layout. A versatile camera, the DiMAGE F100 features the functions and controls essential for great image making. The DiMAGE F100 allows complete control over exposure, color, contrast, saturation, white balance, camera sensitivity and focus. It can also record movies with audio, attach voice memos or captions to still images or just monaural audio by itself.

DiMAGE F100 Major Features:

  • Compact and lightweight with a durable aluminum body
  • Minolta 3x optical F/2.8 38-114mm GT zoom lens
  • 4-megapixel CCD, up to 2272 x 1704 pixel images
  • Auto, Program AE, Aperture priority, Shutter Speed priority, Manual and Movie exposure modes
  • Automatic Digital Subject Program: Portrait, Sports, Landscape, Sunset, Night portrait
  • Wide focus area or Spot focus with area selection
  • Subject Tracking AF and Area AF
  • Exposure bracketing, 3 frames w/1.0, 0.5 or 0.3 EV increment
  • Shutter speeds: 1/1000 to 4 secs, Bulb (max. 15 sec)
  • Continuous advance: 1.5fps to a max. of 3 frames
  • ISO 100, 200, 400, 800 or Auto
  • Still images stored as JPEG with choice of 3 levels of quality or as uncompressed TIFF
  • Motion video: 320 x 240 w/audio at 15fps up to 35 seconds
  • Audio recording: 5 or 15 secs w/still image (voice memo or audio caption), 30 minutes maximum in monaural, WAVE format
  • White balance: Auto, 4 presets or Custom
  • Color modes: Vivid color, Natural color, B&W
  • Sharpness, Contrast and Color Saturation control (3 levels each)
  • Multi-segment or Spot metering
  • 1.5-inch TFT color LCD monitor
  • Minolta's CxProcess image processing provides clear and natural images
  • 12-bit A/D conversion provides a finer tonal gradation
  • White balance options: automatic, daylight, tungsten, cloudy and fluorescent
  • built in flash with Auto, Red-eye reduction, Night portrait and Fill modes
  • Audio/Video output, NTSC or PAL selectable
  • USB v1.1 connectivity
  • Removable flash memory cards (SD or MMC type)
  • Epson PRINT Image Matching compliant
  • Powered by 2-AA or one CR-3V battery

Physical Views

Minolta DiMAGE F100

Minolta DiMAGE F100

Minolta DiMAGE F100Minolta DiMAGE F100

Minolta DiMAGE F100

Minolta DiMAGE F100

Minolta DiMAGE F100

The DiMAGE F100 compared to a Compact Disc

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Dimage F100 Specifications

NO. of effective pixels
3.95 million
1/1.8-type interline complementary-color CCD with a total of 4.13 million pixels
Number of recorded pixels
2272 x 1704
1600 x 1200
1280 x 960
640 x 480
Image-quality modes
Economy, Standard or Fine compressed JPEG
Super Fine uncompressed TIFF
Camera sensitivity
Auto, ISO 100, 200, 400, 800 equivalents
Lens construction
8 elements in 7 groups
Focal length
3x optical 7.8 - 23.4mm
(35mm equivalent: 38 - 114mm)
Maximum aperture
f/2.8- f/4.7
Focusing range
Wide / Telephoto: 45cm / 17.7 inches

Macro: 14.5cm / 5.7 inches to 54.5cm / 21.5 inches

Maximum magnification: 0.17x (equivalent to 0.74x in 35mm format)

Optical zooming control
Power zoom
Autofocus system
Video AF
Autofocus area
Wide focus area(Area AF), Spot focus area with Focus Area Selection
Focus modes
Autofocus: Subject Tracking AF, Single-shot AF, Full-time AF is available in the autofocus mode.
Manual focus
Focus lock
In single-shot AF and Focus Area Selection
By pressing shutter-release button partway down
Subject lock
In Subject Tracking AF
By pressing shutter-release button partway down
White-balance control
Automatic, Preset (Daylight, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Cloudy), Custom
Multi-segment, Spot
Multi-segment metering: 256 segments
CCD electronic shutter and mechanical shutter
Shutter-speed range: 1/1000 - 4 s, Bulb (max. 15 s)
AE lock
In single-shot AF, manual focus, and Focus Area Selection
By pressing shutter-release button partway down
Disabled with Subject Tracking AF
Exposure modes
Programmed AE, Aperture priority, Shutter priority, Manual
Digital Subject Program Selection
Automatic: Portrait, Sports action, Landscape, Sunset, Night portrait
Manual: Portrait, Sports action, Landscape, Sunset, Night portrait, Macro
Exposure compensation
+/-2 EV in 1/3 increments
Flash metering
Pre-flash TTL
Flash modes
In Programmed AE mode: Autoflash, Autoflash with red-eye reduction, Fill flash, Flash cancel In aperture priority, shutter priority, manual exposure
modes: Fill flash, Fill flash with red-eye reduction, Flash cancel
Viewfinder type
Optical real-image zoom viewfinder
Field of view
80% (approx.)
21.4 mm / 0.8 inches (from eyepiece), 18 mm / 0.7 inches (from eyepiece frame)
A/D conversion
12 bits
Recording media
SD (Secure Digital) Memory Cards / MultiMediaCards
File formats
JPEG, TIFF, Motion JPEG (MOV): with audio
DPOF-compliant (supported by printing functions in ver.1.1)
Folder name formats
Standard, Date
Printing output control
PRINT Image Matching, Exif Print
Color modes
Vivid Color, Natural Color, Black and white
Sharpness settings
Three levels
Contrast compensation
Three levels
Color saturation compensation
Three levels
Continuous advance:
1.2fps w/shutter sound, 1.5fps w/out shutter sound
Maximum number of captured frames
2272x1704 1600x1200 1280x960 640x480
Fine 4 8 13 49
Standard 8 16 26 91
Economy 16 32 49 156
File sizes *
2272x1704 1600x1200 1280x960 640x480
Economy 500KB 250KB 150KB 50KB
Standard 1.0MB 500K 300KB 100KB
Fine 2.0MB 1MB 600KB 200KB
Super fine 12MB 5.6MB 3.6MB 900KB
Movie 340KB/s
*Actual file sizes may vary depending upon the subject.
Storage capacity
Approx. capacity of a 16MB SD (Secure Digital) Memory Card
2272x1704 1600x1200 1280x960 640x480
Economy 29 frames 56 frames 82 frames 226 frames
Standard 14 frames 29 frames 45 frames 150 frames
Fine 7 frames 15 frames 23 frames 82 frames
Super fine 1 frames 2 frames 3 frames 15 frames
Movie 41 seconds
Audio recording 30 minutes 9 seconds
Exif tag information
Date and time
Camera settings: Exposure mode, Shutter speed, Aperture value, Exposure compensation value, Metering method, Flash on/off, Camera sensitivity, White balance setting, Focal length, etc.) Color space
Delete function
Single, multiple, or all frames can be deleted.
A frame can be deleted in quick view mode (recording mode)
Single, multiple, or all frames can be locked.
Format function
Date imprinting
LCD monitor
3.8 cm (1.5 inch) low-temperature polysilicon TFT color,
Total pixels:110,000, Field of view: 100% (approx.), Information display can be switched on and off.
Display formats
Recording mode: Live image, Various statuses, Instant playback
Playback mode: Single-frame playback, Index playback [6 frames], Enlarged
playback*1 (scrollable), Slide show, Movie, Various statuses
*1: Enlarged playback magnification: up to 5x in 0.5x increments
Enlarged playback is not available for images recorded in the super fine mode.
10 s (approx.)
Remote control
IR Remote Control RC-3 (option)
Exposure bracketing
1.0, 0.5, 0.3 Ev increments
Number of brackets: 3 frames
File format: Motion JPEG (MOV),
Number of recorded pixels: 320x240, Frame rate: 15 fps,
Recording time: 35 s (max.),
Audio: monaural with playback volume control
Voice memo: 5 s or 15 s with still images,
Audio caption: 5 s or 15 s (max.) with still images,
Audio recording: 30 min. (max.),
Monaural audio with playback volume control, File format: WAVE.
Digital zoom
x 1.25, x1.5, x1.75, x2, x2.25, x2.5
Copy function
Can copy single or multiple images to the same or another memory card.
E-mail Copy function
Creates a compressed VGA JPEG image for transmission.
Audio signals
Two tone and sound effect settings with volume control, Audio signal can be disabled.
Camera body: One CR-V3 lithium battery, Two AA Ni-MH batteries
Remote control: One CR2032 lithium battery
External power source
Battery performance (approx.)
Continuous playback time : 240 minutes with CR-V3 lithium battery. 120 minutes with Ni-MH battery (1700mAh)
PC interface
USB Ver.1.1
AV output
NTSC, PAL (selected on the camera)
(W x H x D)
111.0 x 52.3 x 32.0 mm
4-3/16 x 2 -1/6 x 1-1/4 inches
approx.185 g / 6-1/2 ounces (without batteries or recording media)
Standard accessories
Battery (CR-V3), Hand strap (HS-DG100), SD Memory Card (16MB), AV cable (ABC-200), USB cable (USB-500), DiMAGE Software CD-ROM
*Availability of accessories depends on areas.

(Specifications as represented by the manufacturer)

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