Sony digicams and the "picture iPod"...

Discussion in 'Macintosh Computers' started by dongmin, Feb 24, 2003.

  1. dongmin macrumors 68000


    Jan 3, 2002
    OK OK, I know this has been discussed at length before, but reading about new sony digital cameras today got me thinking about this issue again. What's interesting about the new sonys is that they let you take 640 x 480 video at 16fps, which is quite ground-breaking for digital cameras. The catch is that the length of the movies are limited by the size of the memory stick, 21 minutes at 512MB. This problem, of course, could be greatly mitigated by putting in a hard drive, 200 minutes for 5 gb.

    So this got me thinking that Apple should partner with Sony (or some other camera developer) to design a "picture iPod": 5 mp stills, 640 x 480 video at 16 fps, 10 gig HD, and firewire. It could be even better if they could beef up the buffer so that you get higher resolution or higher fps for the video. Apple could also use mpeg4 (instead mpeg1) for the video.
  2. SoonToGetAMac macrumors 6502

    Jan 27, 2003
    all i want is to be able to get a FireWire Memory Stick reader so that I can dump the memory stick on to the iPod...although now that I have an iBook, I can take that most places too.
  3. topicolo macrumors 68000


    Jun 4, 2002
    Ottawa, ON
    the dsp required to encode mp4 video would kill the battery life I think.
  4. Bateman macrumors member

    Jan 23, 2003
    I'd buy an iCam built to coincide with iMovie and iPhoto...

    As far as features go...

    I'll trust apple to the task!
  5. samsflagdrummer macrumors member

    Feb 23, 2003
    That would be soooooooo nice...

    ...although are you sure that 15fps is ground breaking? I think my Canon PowerShot S230 Digital Elph does 30...
  6. Jaykay macrumors 6502a


    Dec 1, 2002
    I doubt apple will go into that very specialised market (and very competitvive market) unless they teamed up with somebody like Sony or Canon.
  7. Swinny macrumors regular

    Jul 12, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    To even make sense, this thing would need to record in DV format (720x576 @ 25/30fps) in order to work seamlessly with iMovie...I think that would be stretching current technology (or at least, consumer pricing of current technology) in an iPod-esque device.

    ...not to mention the fact that it would need at least a 40GB HD to continue the iPods "less is more" stance.

    Webmaster //
  8. dongmin thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jan 3, 2002
    The 15 fps at 640 x 480 is definitely not at DV quality. But you have to make a compromise somewhere. The Sony camera lets you take 5 mpixel cameras and it does it in a form factor closer to the iPod than a digital video camera. I think a lot of people would be pretty happy to be able to take around an ipod-sized device and be able to take 3-5 mpixel images AND shoot 200 minutes of video. Sure iMovie would happy to be updated to support the lower-rez format, but why not?

    As far as I know, the Canons only allow 30-sec clips at 640 x 480 (the 230 elph only shoots at 15 fps). The big deal about the new Sonys is that you can take continuous, unlimited video footage at 640 x 480. OK, so maybe it's not "groundbreaking" but for someone like me who like to carry a digital camera around to take stills, it's nice to take video clips now and then.
  9. KingArthur macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2001
    Marion, Ohio
    I think that the iPod was designed to be able to hook-up to other peripherals, but Apple never got around to or didn't have the support to further the technology. The major advantage of a firewire device over USB other than the speed is that USB requires the device to be hooked up to a computer to transfer data. Firewire, on the other hand, has the ability for a device to device hookup without the need for a host computer. This has its advantages well beyond the iPod, though. ex. Digital cameras can be hooked-up directly to a printer or firewire harddrive. Heck, you could even have two devices hooked up for gaming like two wireless phones or something. The problem is, manufacturers never really put too much stock into firewire since it is more expensive and I believes it has a larger chipset required for operation. Who knows what features they will give the iPod II, but I am guessing firewire2 (just so that it has a purpose on the powermac), probably a higher-resolution display (maybe even a color line for the high-end), and of course, a larger hard drive. It would be a blunder for them to make it any larger than it is, so that will be one thing that Apple has to think about. The reason people are willing to pay more for it is b/c it is very small and portable. Well, that is just my two cents worth.

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