Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Requiem for Two Cameras

When I was in high school I was planning a trip to Spain and as a gift, my father gave me a camera.

imageIt was a Canon Snappy - a fixed focus camera that took 35mm film and was bright red. It looked like a cross between a PlaySkool camera and a Tonka truck, but I loved that thing.

I took, probably, about 100 rolls of film during the life of that camera. I had it from 1983 to 1991. I took it to class one day when I was in grad school and it just up and stopped working. I was so upset, it was the only camera I’d ever owned and it took such great photos. It wasn’t even that expensive and I probably could have replaced it, but I didn’t.

(The Man later gave me a Canon PowerShot that was super small and took good pictures, but it was film and it was the dawn of the digital age. I still have the camera, but haven’t used it since I got my most recent digital.)

My reason for this post it to relate the recent demise of my beloved Sony DSC-V1. You’ve seen the photos I’ve taken with this camera. It’s an awesome camera and I carry it with me everywhere. It takes great shots, I’ve found it easy to use and of course up until last night, extremely durable.

It’s possible I just plum wore it out. It have taken over 26,000 photos with it. Probably 100 times more than I took with my Canon Snappy before it kicked the bucket.

I spent a half an hour on the phone with Sony to trouble-shoot the camera and they say it’s not covered by a recall on the sensor (because it still shows me the image on the LCD screen, it just can’t record a usable image). Instead they’ll guarantee to fix it for $181.00. I don’t know quite how they arrived at the $181.00 amount, but there it is. The problem is that I can simply buy a refurbished DSC-V1 from their outlet for $299 - which would mean that the lens ring is intact (I dinged mine and can’t use my telephoto lens). Or I can just upgrade to the DSC-V3 which take 7 megapixels shots instead of 5 and uses the same memory sticks and of course is brand spankin’ new.

Those of you who know me, you know that I fear change. Once I get to know people or things, I’m exceptionally comfortable. But the idea of a new camera, no matter how nice a new one might be is causing a fair bit of anxiety. But the idea of being cameraless is even more frightening.

I do plan to upgrade to a DSL at some point. At the moment I’m planning on the Nikon D50 ... but I still want a camera I can throw in my bag and have at the ready.

How nuts would it be to just buy a used Sony DSC-V1? I already have a huge investment in the other stuff - the memory sticks, extra batteries and the telephoto lens.

POSTED BY Cybele AT 3:06 pm    

  1. I don’t think it’s nuts at all to get a used replacement for your current cam.

    I was in the same predicament with my Canon G3, after a drop broke it. Canon guaranteed its repair for $185. I briefly considered just buying a reconditioned one for $250-$300. I was definitely going to go one way or the other for the same reasons as you: my stash of batteries and memory cards. Ultimately I went with the repair in part because everything else was solid.

    I know that ding on the lens ring has been a frustration so given your affinity for the familiar I would definitely get a reconditioned one and finally put that telephoto lens to use.

    Comment by Will Campbell on 3/15/06 at 7:57 am


  2. I remember that Camera…It did take beautiful pictures.  They must have had a sweet lens on that…I am sure your knack for pictures didn’t hurt!  Cmon look at the stuff you have on Flikr.

    I think it’s time to move on though.  Upgrade to the new Sony…the V3 is pretty cool and you can do wide angle shots.

    Comment by crispin on 3/17/06 at 11:01 am


  3. I had the Canon Snappy! Mine was blue and I had it from Christmas when I was about 11 until I dropped it and broke it after a football bonfire my freshman year of college. I loved it too, and looking back at the pictures I took with it I’m impressed with their quality. Thanks for the nostalgic ad.

    Comment by Snow on 4/14/06 at 11:56 am


  4. Snow - I totally empathize. I’m thinking of scanning some of the photos from that old snappy if I can find the negs - I had some great shots of Spain and Northern California.

    Comment by cybele on 4/17/06 at 6:03 am


  5. I remember that camera too. I had it for years and took it every where with me including football matches smile

    Comment by Live Premier League on 2/12/08 at 9:52 pm


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During November it's all about me writing a novel. Sometimes it's about whalewatching. You know, and then there's other stuff.