Cameras & Lenses - updated 12.8.18 - JerseyPix

Cameras, Lenses, and the Photos Taken

December 8, 2018

The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH20, used from 2010 - 2011

Eventually, the Canon Powershot A80 died ... it just stopped working. Hard to complain though, it served us well. So, once again, I was in the market for a new camera. In the intervening years, they had become smaller. I did a little more research, this time I used the "internet." The Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH20 received favorable reviews, the price was right, and I could buy one at Best Buy at the Deptford Mall. 

This little Lumix (I mean... it was really little) traveled well. It went everywhere - it was a family camera. The kids took it with them, the wife, everybody. It was used to capture proms, formals dances, vacations, and graduations.  It's life span was cut short due to scratches on the front lens, imparting a permanent blur upon the photos it took. Although it was in service for only about a year, I  kept about 2,350 photos from this little camera.

Camera Review: The Lumix was pocketable - it was very small. Ergonomically, it was tiny and not easy to manipulate the tiny buttons. The image quality was lacking. The photos were never very sharp, the colors were always wonky. But then again, I didn't really know what I was doing, so maybe it was me, not the camera. I used it solely as a point and shoot. Although it could take videos - I don't think I ever used it to do so. I think I still have this camera somewhere ... I did manage to find the battery charger. I found a used camera  for sale on ebay for $23.00. We'll leave it right there. 

Camera Specifications:

* Sensor Max resolution 4320 x 3240 * 14 megapixels * Sensor type CCD * JPEG quality levels - Fine, Standard * Optics & Focus Focal length (equiv.) 28–224 mm * Optical zoom 8× * Maximum aperture F3.3–5.9 Macro focus range 5 cm (1.97″) * Number of focus points - 9 * No Viewfinder type * Minimum shutter speed 60 sec * Maximum shutter speed 1/1600 sec * Built-in flash Yes * Motion JPEG * Microphone - Mono * Storage Storage types SD/SDHC/SDXC* Internal Storage included 40 MB * Connectivity USB USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec) * Lithium-Ion rechargeable battery & charger * Weight (inc. batteries) 178 g (0.39 lb / 6.28 oz) * Dimensions 100 x 56 x 28 mm (3.94 x 2.2 x 1.1″) 

The First and Last Photos taken with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH20

Photos using the Panasonic Lumix DMC-FH20

August 15, 2018

The Canon Powershot A80, utilized from 2004 to 2010... 

After I broke the Fujifilm FinePix 2800, I did some research (ok ... it wasn't really "research" per se, it was more or less  flipping through Best Buy and Circuit City weekly sales flyers). I settled on the Canon A80, for reasons that now escape me. Was it the price? Perhaps. Regardless, the A80 got the job done for nearly six (6) years. Considering how this little camera was abused, that is incredibly durable. 

This was the family's camera. The kids took this camera out and about, as did the wife. It was plopped into glove boxes, pocket books, back packs, and brief cases. Over the years, we took thousands of photos, keeping about 6,600 images. 

Camera Review: Again, I just don't  remember much. I used this camera as a point and shot. I recall that it had settings that you could use (sports, night, etc...). I fiddled with those at times. Ergonomically, I recall that the A80 was less boxy than the Fuji, but by today's standards, it was big for a point and shoot. Definitely not pocketable. Nonetheless, this was an easy camera to use. Canon's menu is simple, the buttons made sense, and the camera handled nicely.

Camera Specifications:

* 4.0 Megapixel Optical Sensor Type CCD * Digital Zoom 3.6 x System * Digital Video Format AVI Image Recording Format JPEG * Light Sensitivity ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 50 Exposure * Metering center-weighted, evaluative, spot * Exposure Modes aperture-priority, automatic, manual, program, shutter-priority Shooting Programs hi-speed shutter, landscape, night scene, portrait mode, slow shutter, stitch assist * Special Effects Black & White, Low Sharpening, Neutral, Sepia, Vivid White Balance automatic, custom, presets White Balance * Presets cloudy, daylight, fluorescent, fluorescent light (daylight), tungsten light * Max Shutter Speed 1/2000 sec., Min Shutter Speed 15 sec * Exposure Compensation ±2 EV range, in 1/3 EV steps X-sync * Speed 1/500 sec 1.5" LCD display Display Format 67,000 pixels * Built-in flash Effective Flash Range 9.8 in - 14.4 ft Red Eye Reduction * Features AF Zoom lens:  3x zoom - 7.8 - 23.4 mm - f/2.8-4.9 Lens Construction 5 groups / 6 elements Optical Zoom 3 x * Lens Aperture f/2.8-4.9 Min Focal Length 7.8 mm Max Focal Length 23.4 mm Focal Length Equivalent to 35mm Camera 38 m Min Focus Distance 17.7 in Macro Focus Range 1.97 in - 17.72 in * Focus Adjustment automatic, manual Zoom Adjustment motorized drive Group Qty 5 Element Qty 6 Features aspherical lens * Memory: Included 32 MB CompactFlash Memory Card  * Continuous Shooting Speed 1.6 frames per second * Shutter Speed: Max Shutter Speed 1/2000 sec Min Shutter Speed 15 sec * Battery:  4 x AA alkaline battery (included) Width 4.1 in Depth 1.4 in Height 2.6 in Weight 9.6 oz

The First and Last Photos taken with the Canon Powershot A80

The Canon Powershot A80 was a brick, a very solid well constructed camera. I enjoyed using it. It was THE camera from 2004 to 2010. It was dependable and reliable. However, it struggled in low light, but that was to be expected from a point and shoot, even today.

During the time I used this camera, I started to get the itch. I wanted to shoot in low light, have greater dynamic range, and depth of field. However, I was still not considering jumping into the world of DSLR -- that world was just too confusing. I just wanted to point... and shoot.

Photos taken with the Canon Powershot A80

March 1, 2018

The Fujifilm Finepix 2800 Zoom, utilized from 2002 to 2004...

Fujifilm Finepix 2800 Zoom

Little did I know about the truly addictive nature of photography when I bought my first DSRL in early 2011. I took some photography courses in college, using an old Ricoh 35 mm camera. In the intervening years, I would use an assortment of pocket film cameras, rarely using the old Ricoh. We spent a fortune on film and film development... for some really bad pictures. This is the story of my journey into photography madness... 

However, before I would buy my first DSRL, I bought, used, and broke a bunch of digital point and shoot cameras. My foray into the world of digital photography actually started in 2002, I bought my first digital point and shoot camera -- a Fujifilm Finepix 2800 Zoom. No more film, no more development. But I still took horrible pictures. However, I could shoot all day, or at least until my 16 mb SD card got full. I used this point and shoot camera until it broke (yup, after two years, the lens broke clean off the body).

The Fuji sported a megapixel sensor plus a 6x optical plus, autofocus zoom lens. It Included a 16 MB Smartmedia card that could store up to 39 images at default resolution. Wow.

During the time I had the Fujifilm Finepix (2002 to 2004), I would take a lot a pictures. 3,910 pictures, give or take. I shot like I did with the old film cameras... not a lot of thought went into the images. Most of the images were of the family, the kids, shots around the house. I did very little experimentation, which I suppose was due largely to the limitations of the camera. Taking pictures was just perfunctory, as in "Oooh, a birthday party, let me take picture." Occasionally, I would actually compose a shot - but those are the exceptions. 

Nonetheless, the pictures I took in these early years are precious. I've kept every one, no matter how bad. I wish I took more!  Below are some of the images from the Fuji before I broke it.        

Camera Review: I just can't remember much. I do recall it was very light with a good zoom range. It was small, but very boxy. I recall that it produced sharp images. At the time, I thought the images were pretty good, but by today's standards, they are lacking. You can produce a decent photo up to about 8x10. Anything beyond that turns to mush.

Camera Specifications

* 2.1-megapixel CCD delivering image resolutions as large as 1,600 x 1,200 pixels. * 6x, 6-36mm lens (equivalent to a 38-228mm zoom on a 35mm camera) * Digital enlargement to 2.5x, depending on image resolution size * 1.8-inch LCD monitor * Electronic optical viewfinder * Full automatic exposure control. Shutter speeds range from 1/1,500 to 1/2-second * Apertures range from f/2.8 to f/8.2 * Adjustable white balance with seven settings * Sensitivity equivalent to ISO 100 * Built-in flash with five modes * 10-second self-timer * Movie mode (with sound) and Voice Captioning function * Continuous Shooting mode. Images saved in JPEG format to SmartMedia card (16-megabyte card included) * Power from four AA batteries or AC adapter (separate accessory) * USB cable for high speed connection to a computer * Interface software compatible with both PC and Mac platforms 

The very first and the very last photos taken with the Fujifilm Finepix 2800 Zoom. Hey, I didn't say they were any good....

Some of the photos taken with the Fujifilm Finepix 2800 Zoom

  • Walking to School - 2002
  • Driving to Texas 2002
  • Battleship New Jersey Sleepover 2002
  • Alex 2002
  • Twins with missing teeth - 2002
  • Bubba 2002
  • Alex and Sarah 2002
  • Samantha 2002
  • We have gone through thousands of gallons of milk and tons of cheerios in the past 22 years
  • Fatherhood - that moment when you step on a Lego Man with a raised sword as you make your way to the bathroom at 3:00 AM.  2003
  • John at Gettysburg - 2003
  • Stink Eye 2003
  • Alex 2004
  • Cape May Breakfast 2005

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