PC110

The IBM PC110 and the Canon CE300 camera

ce300-box.jpg (6838 bytes)

History

When the PC110 was launched in Japan, there was one special model which came with a Canon CE300 PCMCIA digital camera. This camera was apparently marketed specifically for use with the PC110 - the packaging, the camera, the documentation, and the software all carry references to the PC110.

Since the use of the camera precluded the use of a type III drive, the software for the CE300 was written for DOS, so that it could be run from a modest sized flash card, or even from the internal 4MB flash drive.

CE300 specifications

Canon CE300 digital camera

Resolution 320 x 240 pixels
Colour depth 24-bit (16 million colours)
Focal length Selectable f2.8 or f8, and Normal or Macro mode, giving focal ranges of:
  Macro Normal
f2.8 13cm - 17cm 50cm - infinity
f8 8cm - 30cm 25cm - infinity
Video capture Not supported by the drivers, but the camera updates the image about 10 times per second, so jerky movement is viewable on the screen.
Camera movement Camera can be rotated 180 degrees, in order to face towards or away from the user.
Drivers Available for Japanese DOS only
Interface PCMCIA type II card - camera is fixed on to end of card, which may cause interference with other PCMCIA cards. Use in top slot to leave the bottom slot unobstructed.

Installation

The installation of the CE300 is very straightforward, provided you have access to the original (Japanese) PC DOS/V as installed on the internal 4MB flash drive. If you no longer have this intact, check out my page on the original preload for details on how it should be configured, and remember that you can get the necessary diskette images to rebuild the internal 4MB flash drive contents from this page. I have zipped up the contents of the CE300 driver diskette and made this available, on the basis that the software is only of use to owners of the CE300 camera.

The standard DOS install loads up the PCMCIA card & socket services drivers. With these in place, you simply have to run the program CCU.EXE, which provides camera controls and access to images that have been saved to disk.

You are advised to copy CCU.EXE and CCU.EXP to a hard drive, and you should also create a directory for storing your images in. The CCU.EXE program needs to be told when you start it where you want it to store images, so start it with

ccu c:\picture

if you want it to use the directory c:\picture for storing images. The images are saved as normal JPEG files.

Using CCU to view and take photos

The CCU program should give you a grey screen, with a live image from the camera on the left, and a set of option buttons on the right.If you press <F1> you can toggle between the live image and the gallery of photos you have taken.

If you do not have the card & socket services drivers installed when you attempt to start CCU, you will simply get a few lines of Japanese text which, I presume, tells you to ensure that C&SS drivers are loaded.

Live image screen

The image display has a number above it - the photo index - and a scale at the top right, which shows the light level detected.

Pressing <Enter> causes the live image to be displayed full screen - press <Enter> to switch back.

Use the arrow keys to move up and down between the rows of settings buttons on the right of the screen. Pressing left or right on each button will allow you to select one of the available options - yellow indicates the current selection. From top to botom, the buttons represent:

Seconds between exposures (time lapse mode)
Number of images to take (time lapse mode)
Image quality (JPEG compression level / file size)
Flip vertical
Flip horizontal

If either of the first two settings are set to Off, the time lapse mode is disabled. Flip vertical and Flip horizontal are useful if you twist the camera round to take pictures of yourself whilst viewing the image on the screen.

<F2> exits to DOS.

Photo gallery

The photo gallery contents will, of course, depend on the directory you specified when launching CCU. Nine thumbnails are displayed; you can scroll up and down to view more thumbnails.

Use the arrow keys to move the yellow selection bar to the thumbnail of the picture you want to see, then press <Enter> to view it full screen. Pressing <Enter> again takes you back to the photo gallery.

If you want to delete an image, select it and press <Del> followed by <Y> to confirm.

Press <F1> to go to the live image screen.

<F2> exits to DOS.

 

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Written by Daniel Basterfield. Images found on the internet. Enjoy!