A New Camera

After many years of waiting we finally went out and bought a digital camera. It is a Sony DSC-W1. I nearly bought the DSC-P100, but the W1 has a larger screen and uses non-proprietary batteries.

It worked in linux out of the box: under Fedora Core 2, I just plugged it in and ran “gphoto2 –get-all-files” (thank you gphoto!) from the command line. The graphical tool (gtkam) crashes quite alot though. I’m getting better at using The Gimp to rescale/rotate/crop images. I’m going to need a bigger computer to store all the photos.

It’s a nice camera, there is still some delay when taking the shot. I was hoping the image processor on the new Sony range would remove this, but it seems like only the SLR digitals can do this. We just have to become accustomed to it. It is heaps of fun being able to see the pictures immediately, rather than waiting weeks. You can plug the camera into the TV, which is a really good way to review photos, but also a good way to experiment with different settings.

I bought it from one of the Elizabeth St stores in the city. The amount of conflicting and naive advice I received was amazing. The cheapest place to buy new a camera in Australia seem to be web sites like: minidigital.com.au, camerastore.com.au (or ebay for the brave). These web sites run at very low margins (I doubt they even have stock – they just order whatever you order), so you get a good feel for what the cost price is. Mentioning these web sites (and their prices!) in an Elizabeth St store is a good way to get the price dropped. In the end I actually asked the guy in the store where could I find an internet cafe so I could go and do some research – I went away and came back later and was able to be more informed and had some prices to bargain against. This is a great way the internet has changed shopping habits – we no longer trust the advice of people in stores (did we ever?), and we don’t need to, because we can go on the internet to check facts. Typing the model name of a camera into google is a good place to start – although there are many camera “review” sites that simply rehash the contents of the manual. In the end I was happy to buy from the store which I received good advice, and I was keen to walk away with the camera. Besides the luxury of holding the physical camera, I see no reason why in the future I would not do all my research and purchases on the net.

Helen is very pregnant and we are prayerfully and eagerly awaiting the new baby (really the main reason for getting the camera):

Josiah is ever cute:

A bridge in North Melbourne:

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