Minolta DiMAGE G400 Review

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Minolta DiMAGE G400

Review posted 12/31/03

Click to take a QTVR tour of the G400

The high-performance and compact four-megapixel Konica Minolta DiMAGE G400 features 3x optical zoom lens, sleek metal exterior, autofocusing, autoexposure, auto white-balance, and is ready to go at a moment's notice thanks to an impressive 0.7-second startup time.

The DiMAGE G400 features a 4.2 megapixel CCD for sharp, clear pictures as well as a 3x GT Hexanon optical zoom lens incorporating seven elements in six groups to provide sharp, high-contrast images. The lens is designed to minimize flare and unwanted aberrations so that the tonal range and detail in the scene are apparent in the final image. A newly designed signal-processing engine makes this compact camera twice as fast as the DiMAGE G500. In fact, the Konica Minolta DiMAGE G400's rapid startup (0.7 seconds) and fully- automatic picture taking and shut down cycles in only 1.5 seconds. This allows users to take a properly exposed and in focus picture in the blink of an eye.

The DiMAGE G400 has the technology needed to capture any photographic moment. The camera can automatically focus and determine the exposure in approximately 0.2 seconds and the shutter-release time lag is approximately 0.03 seconds. Konica Minolta's Hybrid Adaptive A*IPS (Image Processing Software) system optimizes autofocus, autoexposure, and auto white-balance processing for fast response. The DiMAGE G400 also employs Rapid Autofocus (AF) to ensure sharp images quickly. Rapid AF uses a passive AF sensor to instantly estimate the distance to the subject and the camera's CCD to determine the precise focus point.

Despite its small size, the DiMAGE G400 is packed with features. The Super Continuous mode takes a series of three images at a rate of 2.5 frames per second. Six scene-select modes allow a user to quickly optimize camera operation for specific subjects. Auto bracketing makes a three-frame exposure or focus bracket of a scene to ensure the best results. Exposures can also be set manually if desired. The camera can store and recall two sets of frequently used camera settings.

Advanced amateur photographers will also appreciate the DiMAGE G400's creative image-making features. Color, sharpness, and contrast can be controlled to create the desired image. And the camera's color-balance function allows users to change the relative proportions of the red, green, and blue to shift the overall color of an image.

The DiMAGE G400 has a convenient dual card-slot system for flexible image storage. Both Memory Sticks and Secure Digital (SD) Memory Cards can be used alone or in combination. When both memory card types are used with the camera at the same time, up 640MB of data can be saved depending on the capacity of the cards. This eliminates the worries of running out of memory during important photographic events.

The DiMAGE G400 is not restricted to only taking still photographs. 320 x 240 XR (Extended Recording) movies with audio can also be made. The length of the movie clip is only limited by the storage capacity of the memory cards in use. Likewise, audio can be recorded by itself or attached to a recorded still image.

DiMAGE G400 Features

  • 4 Megapixel CCD for images up to 2272 x 1702 pixels.
  • 3x (34-101mm) optical zoom lens, 2x digital zoom
  • 1.5-inch TFT color LCD, approx. 120,000 pixels
  • Very fast 0.7-second startup time
  • Rapid 0.2 sec. autofocus, passive AF with CCD video AF
  • Motion video w/audio 320x240, limited only by memory
  • Attach 15-sec audio memos to still images
  • White balance options: Auto, daylight, cloudy, tungsten, fluorescent
  • Program AE, Aperture priority, Slow Shutter, Manual exposure modes
  • Automatic noise reduction for shutter speeds longer than 1/2 sec.
  • Scene modes: Portrait, Scenery, Night, Angel, Snap, Sports
  • AE Bracketing and +/-2.0EV Exposure Compensation
  • 2.5fps Continuous shooting up to 3 frames
  • TTL Evaluative and Spot Metering
  • Flash with Auto, Red-eye reduction, Fill, Forced off and Night Portrait
  • 12x enlarged playback function with scrolling
  • Secure Digital and/or Memory Stick flash media
  • USB 1.1 connectivity
  • Rechargeable Li-ion battery with external charger
  • Small, lightweight and durable stainless steel case

The DiMAGE G400 is available now and includes rechargeable NP-600 Li-ion battery and BC-600 charger, 16MB SD card, wrist strap, USB cable, DiMAGE Viewer CD, Instruction Manual CD, warranty and registration cards.

Physical Views

Minolta DiMAGE G400

Minolta DiMAGE G400

Minolta DiMAGE G400

Minolta DiMAGE G400Minolta DiMAGE G400

Minolta DiMAGE G400

Minolta DiMAGE G400

Minolta DiMAGE G400

The DiMAGE G400 and a standard CD for size comparison.

Minolta DiMAGE G400

The DiMAGE G400 and the Casio QV-R40 for comparison.

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DiMAGE G400 Specifications

Effective pixels 4.0 megapixels
Recording media SD Memory Card, Multimedia Card, Memory Stick
Storage capacity
(16 MB SD Memory Card)
4M Fine 2272x1704 (approx. 8 images)
4M Normal (approx. 16 images)
2M Normal 1600x1200 (approx. 33 images)
VGA Normal 640x480 (approx. 133 images)
Recording format Still images: JPEG (Exif ver. 2.2, DCF compliant), DPOF support
Still image audio / audio only: WAV format
Movies: AVI format Motion JPEG
Image sensor 1/2.5-inch CCD, 2408 x 1758 pixels, (total approx. 4.23 megapixels),
primary color filter
Lens F2.8 - 4.9, f=5.6 - 16.8 mm (6 groups, 7 elements)
(equivalent to 34 - 101 mm in 35mm film camera)
Focus system Video signals + external passive, center-weighted metering
(fixed focal lengths 0.8 m, 1.2 m, 2.5 m, infinity)
Exposure metering TTL center - weighted metering by CCD
Focus range Normal: Wide angle 0.5 m to infinity
Telephoto: 0.8 m to infinity
Macro: Wide angle 0.05 m to infinity, telephoto 0.5 m to infinity
Super macro: 0.2 m to 0.4 m (telephoto only)
Aperture Wide angle: F2.8 / F4.7 Telephoto: F4.9 / F8.2
Shutter speed Still images: Approx 1 second to 1/2000 seconds
Manual exposure: Approx 15 seconds to 1/1000 seconds (noise reduction available from 1/2 seconds)
Exposure control Program AE (ISO100, 3 EV to 15.0 EV), Aperture priority, manual
Exposure compensation ±2.0 EV (0.3 EV steps)
Sensitivity Selectable sensitivity (AUTO / ISO50 / 100 / 200 / 400)
White balance Auto, Daylight, Cloudy, Incandescent, Fluorescent
Finder True image zoom finder
Flash Built in flash, flash interval approx. 4 seconds
Range (ISO 100): Wide angle approx. 0.5 m to 2.1 m, Telephoto approx. 0.8 m to 1.2 m
Green LED lights in finder during charging
Exposure modes Single / continuous / super continuous / Flash ON / Flash OFF / Macro / Self-timer (10 seconds, 3 seconds) / Portrait / Scenery / Night / Snap / Sports / Angel

Movie (320 x 240 with sound) / B&W / Sepia / Red-eye Reduction / Digital Zoom (2x) / Program / Aperture Priority / Manual exposure / Bracket

LCD monitor 1.5-inch low-temperature polysilicon TFT color LCD monitor with backlight, brightness and colors (Red, Green, Blue) adjustable
Playback Single image, index playback, slide show, digital zoom playback
Deletion Single image, specified image, all images, format
LED indicators Startup LED, Self-timer LED, Finder LED
Auto date Recording in year / month / date, or hour / minute until year 2050
Power NP-600 Lithium-ion battery (3.7V), dedicated AC adapter (optional)
I/O connector USB connector
Operating temperature 0°C to 50°C (humidity 20% to 80%)
Dimensions (W × H × D) 93.5 x 55.5 x 23 mm
3.7 x 2.2 x 0.9 inches (excluding protrusions)
Weight Approx. 145g / 5.1 ounces (without batteries and recording media)
Supplied Accessories NP-600 Lithium-ion Battery, Recharger, Power Code, USB Cable, CD-ROM, Strap, SD Memory Card
PC operating environment Microsoft Windows 98, Windows 98SE, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows XP preinstalled
Memory: 16 MB or higher (32 MB or higher recommended)
Monitor: 32,000 colors, 640 x 480 pixels or higher
Others: CD-ROM drive, USB port.

Mac OS 9.0-9.2.2 / X (Ver. 10.0.4-10.2)
CPU: PowerPC.
Memory: 16 MB or higher (32 MB or higher recommended)
Monitor: 32,000 colors, 640 x 480 pixels or higher
Others: CD-ROM drive, USB port

Specifications are as represented by the manufacturer.

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