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Z E1: a connected high-quality camera with interchangeable lenses
Small cameras are convenient, but they are often very limited. A new Kickstarter project aims to change this standard by offering a product that is portable, yet offers the advantages of a full-sized, expensive camera. They call it the E1 by Z, and it looks rather promising.
What makes the Z Camera’s E1 special is mostly its small profile, which makes it an amazingly convenient tool. Despite its size, the E1 manages to pack some great specs inside. For starters, it sports a 4/3 sensor size, which is only a step below APS-C sensors (what you find in lower-end DSLR cameras). This will result in quality you could never get out of a point-and-shoot camera.
The sensor is only part of the equation, though. Most photographers (whether professional or amateur) can attest to the fact that glass is the most important factor. Quality lenses can improve your images immensely, and the E1 can compete with the best in this department. This camera features a micro four-thirds mount that supports auto-focus capable lenses from Olympus, Panasonic Lumix, Leica, Sigma and others.
Inside you will find a 2000 mAh battery that should offer plenty of photographs per charge. When recording at 4K, it should last about 80 minutes while not using WiFi.
Video recording modes:
- 4K 4096x2160p @ 24 fps
- UHD 3840x2160p @ 30 fps
- FHD 1920x1080p @ 60 fps
- FHD 1920x1080p @ 30 fps
- HD 1280x720p @ 60 fps
- 848x480p @ 30 fps
Connecting the Z Camera E1 to your smartphone
This camera wouldn’t really make it to Android Authority if it wasn’t smart in some way. The E1 is not only awesome for its size and performance. This little guy is also a very well-connected device, featuring both Bluetooth 4.0 and WiFi support.
The camera can be controlled by smartphones with a very low 200-300 millisecond latency. Once connected, the user can control, live stream or manage the camera’s settings without even touching it.
Pricing and conclusion
The guys at Z Camera have priced this camera at $699, but of course, those who pledge on Kickstarter can catch a better deal. Most early bird specials are gone, but as of now you can still get an E1 camera for $599. Pledging more can also get you a 14 mm f/2.5 Panasonic lens. Units should tart shipping this November, so you also won’t have to wait forever to see your money turn into an innovative gadget.
I really want to like this project, but I am an image kind of guy, and the Z Camera crew was awfully quiet about photo quality. Video seems to be great, but I would like to learn more about the camera’s performance when taking still shots. They didn’t even mention the megapixel count, which is a bit odd.
Are any of you signing up? It does look like a great portable video-focused camera!