Wednesday, September 15, 2010

There's cameras, then there's cameras. Part 1.

ave you recently invested in the latest digital camera? Hope so, because the one you picked up last year is SO yesterday. Nevermind the fact that you never did figure out all the functions, your friends are sick of your 4GB photos you send them, and all of your shots have that "digital lag" that always seem to miss the "Kodak Moment" by fractions of a second (or more).

But they're cheap, so nobody really thinks twice about going out and getting a new one.  Long term, however, this is an incredible waste of money.  The money you saved by not processing film is gone as soon as you want to print a picture thanks to printer companies who have refined the art of money making on consumer cyclicals.  Yeah, there's a reason why that new awesome printer costs 40 bucks.

So in typical Bouge Boy fashion, let me present you with the alternative, and then a comparison.

Your CameraMy Camera
You bought your camera in 2008, and it was the cat's meow. 10 Megapixel goodness, "Active Child Mode", 4X Wide Angle Zoom (whatever the hell that means), "lens-shift VR technology", "Face Priority", Li-Ion Battery, in-camera red eye fix, etc. You paid $300 for yours new.I bought my camera used in 2008. It was built circa 1940. It has no modes. It has no zoom, unless I want to run forward while looking through the viewfinder. It prioritizes whatever face I point it at. There's no battery. There are no megapixels; it uses film. I paid $25 for mine.
Your lens is a tessar design produced by Nikkor in Japan using the latest in materials and technology.My lens is also a tessar design produced by Schneider-Kreuznach in Germany using higher quality glass that was available pre-EPA laws.
Your camera weighs about 0.28 pounds.My camera weighs about 0.75 pounds
Your camera can hold hundreds of shots before reloading.My camera can hold either 9 or 12 shots without reloading.
You rely on frequent backups to keep your images safe.My negatives are in a book. The book will not crash.
Your battery will last a couple days with heavy use.Thanks to spring technology, my battery will last until I'm personally loaded into a box.
Your camera will likely work for three to five years and be obsolete in 10.My camera has been working reliably for 70 some years and has at least another 70 more left in it.
You find it difficult to take pictures in low light or bright sun.I love taking pictures in low light or bright sun.
At a rate of a new camera every three years purchased at $200 each time, you will spend $1000 in the next 15 years.Did I mention that I paid $25 for mine?
Game over if your camera comes into substantial contact with water.I can soak my camera for three days and be ready to take more pictures.
Your camera fits nicely in your pocket.My camera fits nicely in my hands.
Your camera looks really cool.....todayMy camera is choc-full of joie everyday.

Done with yours yet? Check out eBay for older, manually wound cameras like the Zeiss Ikon or an old Agfa camera or a Yashica. Some of the cameras made by Ensign are a favorite of mine. The one pictured for comparison is a Franka "Rolfix". 6x6cm negative or 6x9cm negative. It's awesome.

--A

1 comment:

  1. You have a great looking camera. And the way you compared it with the current model, I can sense how proud you are of it. I would be too if I were you. :)

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