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Tell us what you think

Discussion in 'News - Discussion' started by DHarman, Nov 9, 1999.

  1. DHarman

    DHarman Well-Known Member

    If you've got a comment to make on any of the posted news items, or just want more information on them, post it here

    Doug Harman
    Deputy Technical Editor, AP
  2. Col. Hogan

    Col. Hogan Well-Known Member

    I just read the story about the Kodak APS/Digital camera. What a shame they aren't thinking about adding the feature to 35 mm cameras as well. It is an interesting concept: film and digital in the same camera! I'll bet they can't do infrared film in it. Now that would be interesting. I've only seen examples of a couple of digital cameras that have been used produce infrared images. There is a website for IR photography that contains links to people's websites where they have used these cameras for just that purpose. The website is: http://www.cocam.co.uk/CoCamWS/Infrared/INFRARED.HTM

    Do they think that they'll lose digital camera business if they add it to 35 mm? Or perhaps they think that the digital cameras fill that need adequately? This shows that APS is not dead by a long shot!


    Every camera I have ever owned has had a preview facilty, its call a viewfinder!

    Is there really any difference betwen looking through the viewfinder and looking at the back of the camera?

    I hardly ever use my digital with the monitor on, apart from the high battery consumption, framing and composition is awkward at arms length. This new camera holding position is possibly the worst one for elimination of camera shake - arms fully extended trying to line up an image that is delayed by a millisecond. I expect it will come about that all cameras will have this facility but the users will have to learn to live with it like flash on top of the lens, no x sync, incompatible lenses etc. All great breakthroughs according to the makers, but not quite as useful as first promised.
  4. DaveWilki

    DaveWilki New Member

    At the end of the Day the Digital Camera's that we see in the shops APS or otherwise Except the D1 and the £3000 cameras are fundamentally instamatic in design and use. Ok they cost more - but they are instamatic. Agreed that looking through the 2" LCD at the back of the camera is a pain in the arse at arms length - but I have found it invaluable doing "party" pictures in nightclubs. I take just over 200 pictures on two sets of batteries (2x4AA, NIMH) with Flash and LCD on at all times - Battery consumption isn’t really an issue if you take a spare set......... or two

    But Digital cameras are moving onward at such a rate that the cost will be the same as a low cost SLR (100 quid). But I don’t think the handling and image quality will be "acceptable" for another couple of years.
  5. DHarman

    DHarman Well-Known Member

    'Instamatic' was a brand name introduced by Kodak in 1972 for its 110 format (13X17mm), cartridge load cameras and, APS (Advanced Photo System) cameras are not digital, they, like the 110 Kodak Instamatic cameras just use a smaller film format than 35mm and are designed to be a better 'point-and-shoot' option for the masses.

    It (Instamatic) has, to a greater or lesser degree simply been adopted by the public over the years, as a generic term for a simple 'point-and-shoot' camera - which indeed they were but digital certainly is not.

    While digital camera's may not fit that bill, they certainly are becoming simpler to use and much cheaper. However, the quality of the cheaper ones leaves a lot to be desired in my view.

    As for battery consumption, it may not be a major issue for some, and cost wise, you may not now have to buy film, but all those batteries can end up costing a fortune - unless you can use a rechargeable type of battery with the digital camera: which is why many manufacturers of these things now include a charger and batteries as part of the kit.

    My tip: Make sure you get one of the latter types if you're in the game for a 'cheaper' digital model.

    Doug Harman
    Deputy Technical Editor, AP
  6. HelenEdith

    HelenEdith Well-Known Member

    The term Instamatic was in use by Kodak well before 1972 and the introduction of 110 film. During the 1960s, my first camera was a Kodak Instamatic 25. This camera used a 126 film cartridge. The negatives/slides produced were approx 28mm square.

  7. phil

    phil Well-Known Member

    I don't have a problem with the redefintion of the term "instamatic" for cheap point and shoot digitals or aps's or what ever. My daugter (aged two) has a 1970's instamatic which she holds to her eye and shouts click! As a model it is now defunct (ok I'm sure someone will diagree with that last statement) but as a descriptive term for cheap and nasty cameras we all know what it means. We all call vacumn cleaners hoovers etc etc so lets use instamatic as a common term for the lower end of the mass market, its descriptive (as is movies for cinematic films) and quite a nice user friendly word, which at the end of the day is quite catchy.


    P.S. Whats the collective noun for a group of photographers? A click, a shutter or an instamatic of photographers!!!!

    P.W. Cox
  8. Steve Lewis

    Steve Lewis Member


    Would you consider the following E-Mail for the letters page of the mag ?

    With reference to your news item on more Jessops stores in the 15th July issue, who is Colin Martin of Jessops trying to fool ? Far from being “committed to the needs of the specialist photographer” it’s been my experience that if you are not into digital imaging, or use anything other than a 35 mm or APS equipment then Jessops can do nothing for you. These are probably the three most popular areas in photography and consequently have the greatest turn over and profit margins. Jessops apparently see no need to cater for anything else.

    As a medium format user, I am very poorly served by the local Jessops stores. Sure, the assistant will offer to get anything you want from another store within a week, but on the one occasion I’ve tried this service, they sold the item the day before my return visit to view it. The manager of the shop told me that he sold it to a customer who walked in of the street ! So much for Colin Martin’s “personal touch and high standards”. I was directed to the nearest Jessops “medium format centre” in Manchester, a 100 mile round trip. A few months later, I was in Manchester on business so I called in and was totally underwhelmed by the paltry selection of new equipment and the even smaller (and dusty) selection of second hand gear.

    Local independent dealers would use the mainstream “bread and butter” areas to help support the other more specialist areas such as medium format, large format, darkroom gear etc. In this way, they were able to provide a varied and knowledgeable service and at a local level. Many of them have been forced out of business by the large chains like Jessops who have no interest in carrying on this service and consequently choice is reduced and standards of service lowered. In attempting to hit it’s target number of stores by 2001, they are sacrificing quality for quantity.

    If Jessops want to keep the personal touch and serve the needs of the specialist photographer as suggested by Colin Martin, they would do well to replace the choice and levels of service and knowledge at a local level which have all but disappeared with the independent retailer.

    Steve Lewis

  9. Tref

    Tref Member

    Likewise, I tend to regard (incorrectly) the terms 'instamatic' and 'point-and-press' as being interchangable. That's not really an issue apart from for Kodak's copyright department <vbg>

    What is an issue is the welter of digital things being thrown at the market right now. Sure, some cameras like the D1, S1, DCS520 (?) etc can JUST ABOUT cut it in the 35mm arena, but owing to lower quality than can be attained on film are only really any use in news-gathering, where halftoned newsprint obliterates the differences between excellent image quality and acceptable. In the studio market, the phase one et al do a similar job for photographers working for clients who demand work emailed to them ASAP (some catalogues will no longer deal with film based photographers).

    But all this is missing the point. If ultimate image quality is your holy grail, then even a sub £100 A4 flatbed will cut the mustard given a decent print as compared to a digital camera costing around, say, an F80.

    Don't get me wrong - I'm not anti DI per se, it just annoys me that there's a huge raft of 1-5 roll a year photographers being persuaded that a digital camera costing as much as a decent mid-range film camera PLUS the associated inkjet costs somehow works out cheaper than sliver halide/minilab.

    Right. That's off my chest and I feel better now! :)
  10. Tref

    Tref Member

    Ah, Jessops.

    I must admit to having grave reservations about their current expansion. My two local branches seem to have major problems when it comes to the storage of the (incredibly expensive) film and paper they try to sell. One apparently keeps all of its colour emulsions on a spotlit shelf (ouch!). The other DOES keep its filmstock in the fridge (only the colour, mind) but has a huge display of RA4 paper with many spotlights. OUCH! That's before you start on the wild disparities in second hand prices between them.

    Given that they're establishing themselves a near monopoly of high street stores which would give excellent economies of scale, surely they could at least look after the goods? After all, they tend to ask up to double the price of the mail order companies. Or are the high prices to cover wasted stock?


    I have been very lazy and have just returned to AP Online after a long absence, and reading some of my remarks I can admit to a partial change of attitude. As my knowledge and understanding of digital photography has expanded so too has my opinion of its worth. I must now admit that digital imaging is probably far more friendly and fun than the silver based discipline. My early learning years were spent practising all things photographic, experiments with films, developers, papers, cameras and accessories.....I think I tried every known process. Now, well my little digital camera, a neg scanner and Adobe Photoshop are all to hand on a desktop yet the results far exceed anything I was capable of in the darkroom. I still get enjoyment out of "knowing" all about the old methods, but have to concede that digital imaging is far easier, and one day will be equal in all respects to silver based medthods.

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