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Casio's Intelligent AF goes beyond face detection

The Exilim EX-Z450 and EX-Z90 ultracompact cameras feature an improved autofocus system that zeros in on any subject--not just people.


If you've got a point-and-shoot with face detection, you may have noticed that the feature's handy if you're shooting faces, but if left on when shooting other subjects the autofocus system is less than accurate. Casio's apparently fixed this with a new Intelligent AF found in its 12-megapixel Exilim EX-Z450 and EX-Z90 ultracompact cameras announced Tuesday.

The AF will detect faces, as well as "non-human photo subjects," so that an animal, flower, or alien invader will be in focus and properly exposed.

Also tweaked in these models is Casio's Dynamic Photo feature, which works sort of like in-camera chromakeying allowing you to cut out a subject--moving or still--and drop it into another photo. It's an interesting, innovative feature and the newest version of it simplifies the process.

The Z450 (above) is the higher end of the two models featuring a 28mm wide-angle lens with a 4x zoom, 3-inch LCD, sensor-shift image stabilization, and an extended battery life of up to 550 shots. It also has a Handheld Night Scene mode to help with camera shake and motion blur in dim lighting. It comes in the color pictured and that's it, and it will sell for $199.99.

The $149.99 Z90 comes in the three colors shown on the right. Its zoom is only 3x, its LCD is smaller at 2.7 inches, and it does not have mechanical or optical image stabilization. Its battery life is considerably shorter, too, rated at up to 230 photos. It is, however, smaller and lighter than the Z450.

Look for them both in October.