Now that digital cameras have broken the megapixel barrier, manufacturers are racing to offer two-megapixel models (see ” Digital Cameras Develop,” elsewhere in this issue). The $699 RDC-5000, from Ricoh (800/742-6410, https://www.ricohcpg.com ), captures images at up to 2.3 million, or 1,792 by 1,200, pixels. The camera includes 2.3 x optical zoom and a USB connection for easy download to iMacs and blue G3s. The $699 PhotoPC 800, from Epson (800/463-7766, https://www.epson.com ), features a 2.14-megapixel sensor, for a maximum resolution of 1,600 by 1,200 pixels. For the consumer crowd, Epson’s $349 PhotoPC 650 captures 1.09 million, or 1,252 by 864, pixels. Both Epson cameras can download images through USB or serial ports.Astral Scans
Expanding Its Astra Line, Umax (800/562-0322, https://www.umax.com ) has released two new flatbed scanners for homeoffice Mac users. The $129 Astra 2000U and $169 Astra 2100U both offer 36-bit color and 600-by-1200-dpi resolution, with USB ports for connection to iMacs or blue G3s. The astra 2100U features three programmable push buttons to automate scanning. Direct copying to a. connected printer, or other operations. Umax also announced it will bundle SCSI cards with its PowerLook and Mirage series scanners to allow connection to blue G3 systems, which lack a built-in SCSI portProject Your iMac
Let your iMac’s inner beauty shine on the wall or through another monitor. The $99 iPresenter, from Power R (800/729-6970, https://www.powerr.com ), is a video adapter that lets iMacs drive a multimedia projector, external monitor, or television. The adapter connects to the monitor cable inside the iMac.Illustrator 8 Update
Adobe (800/833-6687, https://www.adobe.com ) released Illustrator 8.0.1, a free update to the popular drawing software. The patch fixes several bugs, including one that causes crashes under Mac OS 8.5.X. Download the update at https://www.adobe.com/prodindex/illustrator/update801.html.
Stone Design (505/345-4800, https://www.stone.com ) has announced PStill, a PostScript-to-PDF file-conversion program that runs under Mac OS X Server software. The $129 package, scheduled to ship by the time you read this, converts PostScript and EPS files to Adobe’s Portable Document Format.FileMaker Fix
FileMaker (800/325-2747, https://www.filemaker.com ) has released a free FileMaker Pro update that fixes bugs and adds a new data-validation feature. The latter allows you to set up data fields that validate whether entries are numeric, date, or time values. You can download the FileMaker Pro 4.1v2 updater from https://www.filemaker.com/support/41v2release.html.Wacom Tablets Get USB Interface
Users of iMacs and blue power mac G3 systems can now enjoy the benefits of pressure-sensitive graphics tablets. Wacom (800/922-6613, https://www.wacom.com ) has announced USB versions of its Intuos pens and tablets (see Reviews , January 1999). Five models are available: 4 by 5 inches, $200; 6 by 8 inches, $384; 9 by 12 inches, $510; 12 by 12 inches, $510; and 12 by 18 inches, $820. All tablets ship with one pen; the 9-by-12 and 12-by-18 models also include the Intuos 4D Mouse.Epson Joins MFP Fray with Stylus Scan
A scant two months after Canon introduced the first Mac-based multifunction peripheral, Epson America (800/289-3776, https://www.epson.com ) is getting into the act. Epson’s new Stylus Scan series incorporates a scanner and ink-jet printer–comparable to the Stylus Color 740–in one unit. Three models are available. The $349 Stylus Scan 2000 features a sheetfed scanner; the $499 Stylus Scan 2500 and $699 Stylus Scan 2500 Plus include a flatbed scanner equivalent to the company’s Perfection 636 model. The Plus unit also sports an automatic document feeder. All three have USB ports but no serial connections.
September 1999 page: 28