This is a third of a series of posts. The first covered some cameras, which I liked but which I no longer have. The second covered a camera, which I still have but which I find hard to like. In this post we look at a camera, which I no longer have and which I didn’t really like. In fact I’d consider it to be absolutely the worst camera I’ve ever owned. Also one of the most expensive. It’s a Casio QV100. I don’t actually have a picture of it. I’ve tried my best to blot out the memory so I’ve had to “borrow” one from the internet. I “borrowed” the camera photograph from Alistair Patterson’s photostream on flickr, where you will also find a very interesting (and probably more balanced) review of the camera.
Cast your mind back to 1996. I was living in Geneva, Switzerland at the time. I’d been using film cameras (Minolta Hi-Matic 7sii and Canon AE-1) for some time. I was working in IT and now here was a digital camera. I can’t remember what it cost, but I do recall that it was very expensive – more expensive than most of the cameras I’ve bought. But I couldn’t resist it. Among other things it was the first camera with an LCD screen. You could actually see the pictures you were taking!!
I don’t have any pictures taken with this camera. I remember having it, but I had forgotten the model number. We moved back to NY late in 1998. Some boxes were not unpacked immediately and went into our garage. We (my wife and I) were cleaning out the garage the other day and we found some boxes untouched since 1998. In one of these boxes was the manual for the QV100. I no longer have the camera. I gave it to my older daughter who took it back to the UK where it is stolen. Probably the best thing that could have happened to it. I feel sorry for the thief.
So what was wrong with the camera? Well… pretty much everything. The specification in the manual says that this was a “Digital (JPEG based)/Field Recording” system. It had a “built in “32 mbit flash memory” capable of storing “64 fine” (fine being 640×480) images. The manual further claims approximately “150 minutes continuous operation … for about 96 images (one images per minute)”. It had a “61,380 1.8 inch TFT low-glare colorLCD”. Shutter speed “1/8 – 1/4000 second”
My memory is that the image quality was terrible and that the battery seemed to last about five minutes. Maybe I was doing something wrong.
Perhaps I’m being unfair. This was after all in the infancy of digital cameras and the technology had probably not advanced to the stage where it was truly usable. My fault for getting in too early.
I always say that it’s not the technology that matters. It’s the person using the technology and I’m sure there are people who produced lovely pictures using this camera. Unfortunately I wasn’t one of them. There is a flickr group for the QV100. It has two members. Take a look at the pictures. Judge for yourself. Note: I just took a look at this group again and noticed that many of the pictures are not actually taken with a Casio QV100. I thought they looked too good. Strange.