Skip to main content

My First Digital Camera

My First Digital Camera

What you're looking at is my first digital camera. It was my wife's idea for me to get it. I had a Nikon N90 with a Nikkor kit zoom and Nikon flash at the time (which I gave to my #2 daughter for her college film photography classes). But it had been nearly a year since I'd bothered to pick the Nikon up and use it; it was sitting on the shelf in my closet gathering dust. Then, for Valentine's day 2004, Target had a sale where they dropped the price of this particular camera to under $200, and at the same time they cut the price on a small Canon printer that printed 4x5 prints for roughly the same price as the A300. They threw in a pack of extra paper for free. My wife read about the deal in the Sunday paper and told me to go get it.

I was ambivalent about buying such a simple point-and-shoot. I told my beloved it wasn't nearly as good as the awesome Nikon, but she responded that the little Canon would be better because at least it would be used, at least for a little while. I'd either get back into photography or else get bored again. And if that happened it was cheap enough for me to give to one of the girls.

So I bought it, and read the manual, and started to play around with it. After 30 minutes I was hooked. Not just because of the photographic results, but it's technical specs appealed to my geeky nature. For example, I could pull the Sandisk CF card I'd bought with it (a monumental 128MB) and stick it into the same sized slot on my Dell Axim 5 PDA (remember those?), and review the JPEGs on the Axim's much larger screen. It was that connection that killed any idea of printing for me. I still have the printer in its original box, along with the unused extra paper. That was eight years ago.

It's funny to look at the specifications now and compare it to what I currently use. Funny thing is that the E-1 is the same vintage as the A300, both having been released in 2003. The A300 had some interesting features that have been dropped in the name of progress. For example, it ran quite well on a pair of AA batteries. Nothing to charge, no special battery pack. It has a fixed focal length lens of 5mm, equivalent to somewhere between 28mm and 35mm. It's ISO range was limited to between 50-400. At ISO 50 it produced really nice JPEGs. It has a focus assist light and a built-in flash. And it shot video, about 3 minutes/clip. While aimed at the casual shooter, it scratched an itch I didn't realize I had. I used it pretty intensely for two years until I got the E-300 two years later, and then I let the girls use it until they each got more advanced Powershot A650s one Christmas.

More than anything else it was a simple camera that captured good to excellent photos. I still have them burned to archival DVDs, and some of them printed out.

Most importantly, I had a lot of fun using it. Can I say that now?

I've now spent far more money on "low cost" Olympus gear than what that little camera cost. Technically the photos are much better, but artistically, well, who can say? Maybe I shouldn't ask.

It's broken and it should be tossed, but I can't bear to part with it. Maybe one day I'll break down and fix it myself. Or buy a used one on the market. They're about $30 these days. Less than the cost of an official Olympus ยต4/3rds lens hood.

Technical

Olympus E-P2 + Panasonic 1:1.7/20mm. Wide open. Taken straight out of the camera, 6:6 square ratio, black and white.

Comments

  1. Cool article Bill - I just linked to it from my own thoughts about our first digital camera...

    ReplyDelete
  2. OK, Bill and Wolfgang inspired me, so I wrote my own piece about my first digital camera. A Fuji MX-1200.

    http://marty4650.blogspot.com/2012/04/my-first-digital-camera-fujifilm-mx.html

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

All comments are checked. Comment SPAM will be blocked and deleted.

Popular posts from this blog

A Decade Long Religious Con Job

I rarely write inflammatory (what some might call trolling) titles to a post, but this building you see before you deserves it. I've been seeing this building next to I-4 just east of Altamonte/436 and Crane's Roost for nearly 12 years, and never knew who owned it. Today on a trip up to Lake Mary with my wife I saw it yet again. That's when I told her I wanted to stop by on the way back and poke around the property, and photograph any parts of it if I could.

What I discovered was this still unfinished eighteen story (I counted) white elephant, overgrown with weeds and yet still under slow-motion construction. It looks impressive with its exterior glass curtain walls, but that impression is quickly lost when you see the unfinished lower stories and look inside to the unfinished interior spaces.

A quick check via Google leads to an article written in 2010 by the Orlando Sentinel about the Majesty Tower. Based on what I read in the article it's owned by SuperChannel 55 WA…

first night for the gingersnaps

The first night has passed and the two have managed to survive, in spite of what their tiny hearts might have thought when first arriving. Greebo, the larger of the two, has been in hiding the entire time so far. Ponder has spent the time zipping in and out of hiding spots, checking things out, and learning just how comfortable pillows are for resting your head.

During the night I felt the tiny body of Ponder hitting the bed as he leaped up on the side, and then climbed to the top to run around on top of me. At least once he play-attacked my fingers. He might be small but his claws are still quite sharp.

When I got up in the morning the bowl of cat kitten food was fairly well depleted. It's been refilled and fresh water put in the big dish on the floor. I'm assuming that both Greebo and Ponder are feeding and drinking. I have seen Greebo under the furniture peeking out at me when I went looking for him. I'm leaving him alone while he continues to adjust.

So far the guys h…

cat-in-a-box channels greta garbo

So I'm sitting at my computer, when I start to notice a racket in back. I ignore it for a while until I hear a load "thump!", as if something had been dropped on the floor, followed by a lot of loud rattling. I turn around and see Lucy in the box just having a grand old time, rolling around and rattling that box a good one. I grab the GX1 and snap a few shots before she notices me and the camera, then leaps out and back into her chair (which used to be my chair before she decided it was her chair).

Just like caring for Katie my black Lab taught me about dogs, caring for Lucy is teaching me about cats. She finds me fascinating, as I do her. And she expresses great affection and love toward me without coaxing. I try to return the affection and love, but she is a cat, and she takes a bat at me on occasion, although I think that's just her being playful. She always has her claws in when she does that.

She sits next to me during the evening in her chair while I sit in mi…