The LCD monitor makes the CX1's extensive functions easier to use
Featuring a 920,000-dot high-definition VGA screen, the CX1's large LCD monitor has also been enhanced. "Since the volume of information that could be displayed on a single screen increased dramatically, we had to really think hard about we should do to take advantage of this opportunity," said screen-design leader Mayu Takano. The aim was to improve and enhance usability by rethinking operation steps and screen layouts.
"We thought about the CX1's ease of use as a tool in both shooting and playback situations, and we were determined to achieve an 'at a glance' visibility in which all the appropriate information is clearly visible on a single screen," said Takano. Along with the help screens and function explanations, there is also a "shooting information display frame function" that enables the photographer to frame the subject without superimposing shooting information over the image. "Very few people bring the camera manual with them when they go out to take pictures. The CX1 has such a wide range of functions that it would be difficult to remember the significance and usage method of each. So we provide access to a function explanation when a function is selected and also the ability to search with a help option," Takano explained.
Greater consistency in the thumbnail display
The CX1's 920,000-dot high-resolution screen has also made it possible to create the 81-image "micro-thumbnail display function" for playback. According to Takano, "This function relieves stress by enabling you to view many images at a glance and quickly find specific ones during playback."
"When we came up with ideas for convenient screens, we immediately proposed them to the planning and design staff," said Takano. When the power is off, the "Today's Shots" display shows the number of images shot that day. This was one of the ideas proposed by the screen-design people.
Easy to hold, easy to operate
It was Kimiharu Yanagisawa's job to give form to the planning concepts and design-staff goals. He was in charge of the CX1's overall physical form, including the internal and external layout and the placement of the operation buttons. "I wanted to give the CX1 a design with a sharp feel. To make it easy to hold, we put a rubber piece on the back and changed the position of the ADJ./OK button," explained Yanagisawa.
"For quick, spur-of-the-moment candid photos, it is important that a camera be easy to carry with you. I wanted to create a body that would make full use of the mobility potential offered by a compact camera," said Yanagisawa. "At the same time, we placed strong emphasis on button placement and form in an effort to prevent operation errors."
As Takeuchi put it, "The 'CX1' is a digital camera that enhances speed and imaging power to make it possible to quickly capture the true faces of people and places as the eye sees them." Inspired by the ambitious nature of the original plan, the CX1's technical staff struggled to widen the world that a camera can portray. Next time we will take a closer look at that struggle.