Sunday, November 02, 2008

In Camera

the old old camera

As some of you know, I'm fond of taking photographs and clogging up the internet with them posting them to Flickr. My weapon of choice for this, in recent years, has been Mrs. Ricardipus' rather nice, Zeiss-lensed Sony Cybershot DSC-R1. Which is a lovely chunk of a camera, with a big, fat (if fixed) lens, 10+ Megapixel resolution, and rather more features than I really know how to use.

However, it is too large to conveniently pop in a pocket (unless I really want to look like I'm smuggling a bomb under my coat), and is also a bit expensive to haul around while traveling. So more recently, I've taken to purchasing disposable 35mm film cameras on my trips here and there, which are a) expensive per photo, b) use film, which gets me into the whole scanning nightmare, and c) typically equipped with tiny little lenses that I swear are made of dubiously high-quality plastic. Which can sometimes give you some interesting optical distortion effects, to be sure:

records and uitars
Rainbows in the corners.

but are generally, in a word, crap.

Things changed a bit recently, with the appearance of a rather nice little Nikon Coolpix L16 at work. Which, conveniently, lives in my office. And also conveniently fits in a pocket, has a lens that isn't made of plastic, and takes rather nice photographs. In exchange for occasional use of this beastie, I replace the batteries on my own ticket. Seems fair, I think, and it spends its days available for taking photos of people and things in the lab when needed, like this rather fabulous microscope:

cytogenomics scope
A different kind of digital camera.

Of course, it sometimes gets used for things outside the lab, too:

Aston Martin V8
Parked across the street.

All of which means, of course, that I've been after a nice little point-n-shoot of my own, that I can happily take traveling, leaving the work camera where it belongs.

Which brings me to this... joy of joys, I have finally accumulated enough reward points for contributing my knowledge, wisdom and tongue-flappery (in the cyber sense) to this discussion forum, that I just ordered myself a slightly out-of-date, but still (allegedly) fabulous Sony Cybershot DSC W55. While it won't arrive before my trip to Montreal on Tuesday, and probably not before my next trip to Washington in the middle of the month, it should be well and truly in hand before the following trip to Montreal again, in January. And well available for shooting from the hip while traveling hither and thither throughout the Greater Toronto Area, like this:

I don't want what they're selling.
This amused me slightly.

I'm very happy - it's been a long time coming. Let the flood of photos of questionable quality begin.


Rik said...

The best digital camera I've ever had is always at my side. It's only 5mp, but it comes with a mobile phone built in. My old digis have been mothballed. I might freecycle them, but who'd want a 3mp and a 4mp, even for free?

WV: Boatedi - a Croatian make of camera.

#Debi said...

R'pus: For future reference, most photo labs these days will, for a very small fee, give you a disc with digital versions of your prints in addition to the prints themselves. Actually, when you take the film in, you generally can request ONLY the CD, and no prints at all...

Aled said...

Because of my errant driving over here, I have taken to carrying a disposable camera in the glove-box. This will hopefully help Mr. Plod and the local equivalent Judge Roy Bean decide who is the miscreant. My new cell phone (courtesy of Rik) can also take snaps, but this involves pressing buttons etc. in a correct sequence. I haven't quite mastered that feat yet. I have managed to find how to charge it though. And take calls. Working on making calls right now.
Enjoy Montreal. Or should that be Bon Chance!

Aled said...

BTW Debi. I found a shop here that will allow you take in the film and give you a CD only. They will also allow me to take pictures in on a memory stick, and convert them to film and/or CD. I'm impressed with the march of technology. I expect man to land on the moon one of these days. Hope it's my next door neighbor who likes fireworks.

Ricardipus said...

Rik - any of those are fabulous compared to my *other* digital option, which is the kids' Disney Pix Micro cameras. 0.1 Mpixels. Yes, that's "zero-point-one".

Evidence here.

Debi - I've done this at two different photo shops. In both cases, the scans were absolute crap (low-res, grainy) and required extensive Photoshoppery to get them to be presentable.

Evidence here, here, and here.

The Wrath of Dawn said...

Congratulations! And Yay! And go you!

One thing I learned from the link you provided is that you can buy telephoto and wide-angle lenses for the point-and-shoots. I did not know this.

What kind of phone do you have, Rik? My phone's photos are crappy in the extreme and just disappear into cyberspace when I try to email them to my computer.

sepordsh - What happens when I email photos from my phone.

Rik said...

Dawn: I have a Nokia N95, with a Carl Zeiss lens that really must be kept clean and closed when not in use.

zoe said...

Why is there always a damn car in each of your posts? It annoys me. Ah - the post was about photos. So a photo of a car was a 'must', I presume.

phsmatic: an asthmatic tyre.

Ricardipus said...

Zoe - I put the cars there just for you, because I know you love them.

Goodness me, my wv was 'gyrating' - have they started using real words now?

W'ferret said...

I always have a phonecam in my pocket(3.2mpixel at the moment) and 2 Canon DSLRs, a fuji P&S for video and the mighty Kodiak DC3200 chock full of 1 megapixel of overcompressed jpeg goodness for general overall crappiness.

I have way to many cameras.

Ricardipus said...

w of the ferret variety - one can *never* have too many cameras.

I didn't mention the Pentax SLR (film) camera, or the built-in on this laptop. Both have been used, on occasion, although I suspect the film camera and its lenses will soon be traded in for something else.

john.g. said...

My Nikon D40 Is a beauty, but not pocket size!

edt said...

Welcome to the world of Sony point and shoot. I am really happy with my DSC-W5 which is a model or two back from your current purchase. I have a nifty soft case with a big wide vecro belt flap that makes it handy for carring on my belt. At a pinch I can get a set of double A batteries and a spare memory card in it too. Have a browse at the following url. Lowepro make some really nice pouches. Look under "Camera Pouches" Any decent photo store should stock them.

Ricardipus said...

edt - thanks for the tip... I'll need a case of some kind.

*eagerly anticipating*

Anonymous said...

Use rechargeable batteries. They last much, much longer due to their flat discharge curve.

Anonymous said...

Also, what Aled said.