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Old Oct 22, 2006, 5:38 PM   #1
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I just received my V705 yesterday. I you are unfamiliar with this new dc, it is the newest version of the V570, with 2 lenses (ultrawide and zoom). The differences are: 7.1 megapixels, anti-blur notification, and PerfectTouch technology. Since I have never owned a V570, I cannot directly compare the two. But I will share my first day's experiences.

First of all, the wide angle lens makes a huge difference. I am a commercial real estate agent, so I needed a compact ultrawide camera. This thing delivers. I took the same shot from a tripod with the V705 and a collegues Canon digital ELPH with it's 32 mm lens, and my picture was at least 40% wider than his. The camera defaults to the wide angle lens everytime you turn it on, which is fine for my needs. The picture quality is pretty good, but not as sharp and detailed as I would have preferred.

The anti-blur notification is basically a technology that monitors the egde sharpness in a photo after you have taken a picture. It is NOT image stabilization. You get a green, yellow, or red notification depending on the amount of blur. With the wide lens, it's very easy to get a green. But the more you use the zoom, the harder it is. I have not been able to produce a "green" shot yet at the furthest zoom. It's a helpful feature to have, as it can save you from taking that once in a lifetime shot, only to find it ruined when you look at it later on a monitor. It also teaches you to pay attention to your shooting "form".

The PerfectTouch technology is also a nice feature. It seems to be an Auto Levels and Contrast program that the camera can apply to your pictures. Dark areas in photos are lightened with more detail, and overly bright areas are toned down. The only problem with this technology is that you have to apply it to each picture individually after you have taken it. This is not a setting you can turn on or off, but rather a tool that you can use to adjust each photo separately.

The 2.5 inch display is very nice and bright, even in direct daylight. Certain indoor lighting situations will require that you make some adjustments, though, instead of using just the Auto mode. Not only will you will find that it is necessary indoors to play with the Scene modes or other manual settings to get your best shots, but that Auto mode will be innadequate for decent pictures in some situations. The lcd is fairly detailed enough to see when those situations are. My one complaint about the lcd (which actually has less to do with the lcd than with the camera itself) is that the 5 second preview after you take a shot is not as clear or detailed as the same picture when viewed in Review mode. The only way to tell what your shot really looks like is to "review" it, so don't rely strictly on the preview.

The one aspect of this camera that I don't understand is the file sizes it produces. My 7 megapixel Sony dc produces 3MB files, yet my V705 only produces file sizes of less than 2MB. Why does this matter? When you compare photos from the V705 to other cameras, you will notice that the V705's pictures are softer, with less detail. If you blow up the photos on your computer, you will notice compression artifacts (or blocking) occur even in well-lit outdoor shots. It seems this camera is using a higher JPEG compression than other cameras on the market. As we all know, the more you compress a JPEG, the more the quality suffers. At this time, I have found no setting to turn this off.

For everyday pictures, and especially real estate work, this is a great little camera. Ideal uses would real estate, parties, group shots, self portraits, landscapes, panoramas, etc. But due to the JPEG compression and poor shot preview, I probably wouldn't want this for my ONLY camera or for critical/special events.

Does anyone know what kind of compression Kodak is using? Kodak wrote me back and stated that the camera is not capable of compressing the images, but the file sizes suggest otherwise. If you have any questions or comments for me, please post them and I will try my best to address them.
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Old Oct 24, 2006, 12:21 PM   #2
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Here is what Steve said in his review of the V570......

The V570's movie mode suffers from aggressive compression. At 640x480 and 30fps, the V570's movies consume about 500-kilobytes per second, efficient from a memory perspective, but the resulting moving images have a very noticeable graininess caused by compression artifacts. While you can use the optical zoom during movie recording, the audio track will contain some very unusual noises of the zoom mechanism at work; it's best to compose your movie before, not during recording. Review mode offers several useful movie editing features, including saving of a still image index, creating a single still image, and splitting the movie into two parts.


Kodak has been cursed over the years with this accusation. I know that the DX6490 I have when first reviewed and used by new owners was accused of having to haevy a compression. I just wish Kodak would only hire knowledgable people to respond to consumer complaints.

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Old Oct 24, 2006, 12:30 PM   #3
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Hey bigdawg,

Thanks for your feedback. I posted this same topic on another forum, and got a response from a Kodak engineer. His explanation was helpful and very detailed, but still left me suspicious of their compression settings. I also used some software to analyze the quality of jpeg compression of my Kodak pictures vs other cameras, and the quality was lower. I'm not sure if I'm allowed to post a link to another site, but:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=20569007


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Old Oct 24, 2006, 10:15 PM   #4
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You can post any link you want as long as it isn't porn! LOL I have long known that most of the Kodak cameras compress the photos a lot. It's just that the resulting photos I get are so darn purty that it hasn't mattered that much!



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Old Oct 25, 2006, 10:28 AM   #5
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I'm starting to agree with you. My pictures are softer than I would like, but the colors are well saturated and the 23 mm lens makes them more dramatic. The smaller file sizes just made me think the camera was broken at first.
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Old Oct 25, 2006, 10:36 AM   #6
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Don't let file size throw you too much. A bigger file doesn't mean a better photo! I've seen some amazing photos taken on small low mp cameras. The camera can't compose or choose the right light therefore it is the photographer that make the best photos not the camera. Even with a high dollar DSLR you have to live within the limitations of the camera. You, not the pricey camera will still have to deal with whatever short commings that camera has and learn to use whatever camera you have to take good photos.

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Old Oct 25, 2006, 4:20 PM   #7
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Greetings Budge,

Sounds like you are enjoying your new camera. It does have some pretty nice features.

One that you did not mention is the panorama feature. You can create a 3 shot panorama from the left or the right. The camera will auto stitch the images together. Since you are in the real estate business this may be valuable. Check it out. The manual will offer details.

As to the compression concern, the options you have are:





Picture size


7.1 MP—best (3072 × 2304), prints up to 20 × 30 in. (50 × 76 cm)
6.3 MP—best 3:2 (3072 × 2048), optimized ratio for 4 × 6 in. (10 × 15 cm) prints
5.0 MP—better (2576 × 1932), prints up to 20 × 30 in. (50 × 76 cm)
3.1 MP—good (2048 × 1536), prints up to 8 × 10 in. (20 × 25 cm)
1.1 MP—e-mail (1200 × 900), small prints


What setting do you have the camera at? Are yo using the 3:2 or top best setting? If you have not tried this, it may be worth your while so you can optimize your work.

As a test, I would set the camera on a solid stable surface, and set the timer to fire. so you get the least movement possible. Next, photograph the exact same scene holding the camera. Sometimes inside shots can give you just an ever so slight bit of movement that may be seen as something else. In the noted scenario, see if there is a difference. If not let me know and share a picture.

Talk to you soon, Budge, nice to meet you.

Ron Baird
Eastman Kodak Company
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Old Oct 26, 2006, 10:26 AM   #8
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Hi Ron. I am enjoying my camera. Even though I was a bit concerned about the file sizes, I'm quickly finding that the images are very good and the camera's unique features would be hard to live without now. I mostly use the 3:2 to save time with cropping, and the smaller file sizes save more time since I don't have to reduce them manually in Photoshop.

I didn't mention the panoramic feature before because I had only used it once. Since writing my first impressions, I have had the chance to use it more and I'm very impressed. It must use an "intelligent" program, because it seems to line up my shots even when I know I was a little off. My first digital cam, an Olympus, allowed you to create panoramics on your desktop, but the images were never aligned well. One suggestion, however, would be to make the alignment image semi-transparent. It's difficult to line up some shots when the alignment image is covering the composition of the next shot. It would be easier to lay the alignment in the right place if I could see both images. Just a thought.

I posted my first impressions on three forums, and I received a lot of great feedback (some very technical). I have come to the conclusion that Kodak is using a higher compression setting for it's jpg images than other companies, but that the image quality is still very good. The images are soft, but the color saturation and wide angle lens make my images more dynamic. I will try your test and see if the image appears sharper. I did notice that even though I always get a "red" notification when zoomed in, the resulting images are fine.

And I think bigdawg's comments are valid as well...I need to learn how to get the most out of this camera. My last dc was fine for most shots in full auto mode. I just need to find which settings work best for the majority of my shots and set them as my preferred scene settings.

Thanks for your feedback. I'm glad to see the manufacturers tapping into to user opinions and discussions.
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