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-- ATTENTION --
Please read the notes posted at the right *before* using the system.
If core memory fails, cycle power, reload system from tape and initialize instruction register with switches.
We are *not* responsible for your card decks. If they get dropped or knocked over you're out of luck.
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Mon, 26 May 2008
Style Cam Blink II

I've had the The Sipix Style Cam Blink II for a number of years. It is really tiny, just a bit more than 2 inches on each side. At the time that I bought it, most of the other cameras near to this size only offered QVGA resolution (320x240). This camera offered a whopping full VGA resolution (640x480) which is good for web pages.

It has an optical viewfinder but no flash. It has a little LCD for picture count and mode selection. It will take short "video" clips but they are actually just a series of quick photos that need to be combined on the PC into an AVI. There is a USB 1.1 interface and it takes a single AAA battery.

The memory is only 8 Meg but that can hold about 30 "high" resolution photos. Unfortunately, like most ultra low end cameras it is not flash RAM and once the battery dies you lose all your photos. With only a single AAA you can image that the battery life is not all that long. To keep the memory live it has to power it constantly so the battery will continue to drain even when you're not using the camera. Eventually, I put a plastic pull tab between the battery and the contact so that the battery would stay fresh when there where no photos saved.

It is a very poor performer in low light but actually not too bad outside in bright light (remember this is a toy camera so "not too bad" is just slightly above "crapy"). The one thing that attracted be to this camera was its ultra small size. It was easy to keep in my pocket or snapped on to my badge lanyard at conferences. I took some photos with this camera at DefCon 11. I wouldn't recommend this camera to kids, at least not now, because it doesn't have flash RAM. I may try to attach this to one of my small helicopters and see how that works.



posted at: 22:30 | path: /Toys/Cameras | permanent link to this entry
Vivitar ViviCam 3350B

This one is a lot like the Style Cam Blink but not as small. These were on close out at Fry's for next to nothing so I grabed a few. They also take 640x480 photos and short "video" clips, have a photo counter/mode LCD, 8 MB, USB 1.1 but take two AAA batteries. There's not much more to say about this camera.

The battery door is really flimsy and I expect it *will* break under normal use and/or the batteries will pop out. I have been able to change the batteries, quickly, without losing all the photos. But when my kids used it, either the batteries poped out or died before they (or I) could remember to down load the photos. This camera does work under Linux with gphoto so they may get torn down and used for something else.



posted at: 20:23 | path: /Toys/Cameras | permanent link to this entry