Like many other companies, camera maker Konica Minolta stepped up to the plate today with several new digital camera announcements, timed to coincide with this week's Photo Marketing Association (PMA) 2004 trade show in the US. The new announcements include new 3.2, 4 and 8-megapixel digital cameras aimed at consumers and pros alike.

The new 3.2-megapixel DiMAGE Xg digital camera follows the same form factor as the DiMAGE Xt camera, but features different circuitry that enables it to have a start up time of about 0.8 seconds. The camera features digital subject program modes, a 1.6-inch LCD monitor, continuous 2 frames per second advance, multi-frame drive, image pasting, a night movie mode, and support for PictBridge, a technology that simplifies direct printing without a computer.

The tiny camera is less than an inch thick. It sports a 3x optical zoom and Konica Minolta's CxProcess II image processing engine. The DiMAGE Xg also supports a five-point auto focus area, and can record movie clips at 320 x 240 or 160-x-120 pixel resolution onto an SD memory card. The DiMAGE Xg uses NP-200 lithium ion batteries and can record up to 220 frames or 2300 frames in continuous advance speed on a single charge.

The DiMAGE Z2 was also introduced Tuesday. The 4Mp camera features 10x optical zoom and features like Rapid Autofocusing, Predictive Focus Control and more. The optical zoom is built around an all-glass apochromatic (APO) lens and sports a focal range of 5.8mm to 58mm (equivalent to 38 - 380mm in a 35mm lens).

Rounding out Konica Minolta's digital camera announcements is the DiMAGE A2, which the company bills as an "SLR-type" digital camera that builds on the foundation laid by the DiMAGE A1. It features an 8Mp 2/3-inch sensor and a 922,000 pixel electronic viewfinder that sports 4 times the previous model's resolution.

The new 3D autofocusing technology in the DiMAGE A2 is 1.5 times faster than its predecessor. It also sports 3D Predictive Focus Control. The 3D focusing technology, according to Konica Minolta, enables the camera to plot exactly where a subject will be when it's moving at the time of exposure. The DiMAGE A2 also sports anti-shake capabilities for still images and movies alike, a carryover from the A1 model.

The DiMAGE A2 features USB 2.0 support for high-speed downloading of digital images to Macs and PCs.

Pricing and the release schedule of the new models were not available as Digit posted this article.