Daily Inspiration #354 by Dougie Digital Dog

Hi everyone
I have been reading Steve’s site for about a year now.
It is the only photo site keeps me returning.
I suppose cause of its home brew comforts.
Steve took time to reply to my request for a Daily Inspiration.
I hope I can do this site justice.
I kept my 1D, D1H , E1, S1 pro, SD9 up until i switched to EP1.
There was something about those huge pixels on those golden oldie sensors
a certain richness like film.
And a certain grungyness.
After EP1 i switched to NEX5.
I missed the look of those venerables.
Yet I wanted to stay away from luggin those bootiful beasties.
In came
Olympus C2040 F1.8
Olympus C2100UZ aka da “uzi” 🙂
Sony F505 with its swivel Zeiss Sonnar
2MP of lushness on 1/2″ sensor
Big & Bootiful yummy pixels (size of Canon 7D pixels).
Grungyness galore.
Each one was stellar in what it could do
Olympus C2040 my most treasured with that f1.8 & much film graininess
Olympus C2100UZ “uzi” that image stabilised 38-380 canon lens of such quality and massive EVF 
if only it was 5mp it would still be with me.
Sony F505 tilt lens crazy architectural angles.
Max print size 8×6
My oh my what glorious 8×6 they make.
Your neighbourhood mutt
dgd (dougie digital dawg) woof woof :-))


  1. dgd, I’m not sure you got my post — there are two different “James” commenting on this article (the curse of having a common name) — I’m the one who made reference to the Luminous Landscape articles. I feel your pictures are excellent and in fact extraordinary — the type of images I myself try to photograph. The other “James” feels differently and I suppose that’s his right. Do you have a website where I can view more of your work? Thanks.

  2. Super shot DjDLV

    I just looked up the Casio P600 sure looks nice.
    Those CCDs do give the X1, M8, M9 approxmated look.

    One p&s i had a chance to get a few times (wish i had) as it has manual aperture dial as X1
    is Kodak DC4800 28mm 3MP of CCD lushness on a 1/1.8

  3. Great post and interesting topic. I agree older sensors do have a very differnt feel than modern ones.

    I recently had fun playing with an old casio exilim pro 600 6mp camera with canon f2.8 lens while my X1 was away getting repaired after I demolished it. I found the results of a street shoot I did in the rain stood up to the best captures I have achieved off any camera.


  4. Well of course I’m entitled to my point of view, why on earth should you detail that?

    “Quite excellent”? Take them to any print gallery and see how much your excellence is worth.

  5. Refreshing post, thank you. I never got to use the Nikon D1, but love the sensor on the D2H and also the Canon 1D. But the Olympus E-1 and the Olympus C8080 were my favorites producing beautiful film-like images.

    • Hi CL

      I should really have spent more time with the C8080, at the time i also had the Digilux2 and kept it because of its manual zoom.
      Lens & picture quality they both were so similar.

      My EP1 was the closest to E1 of any sensor and even though i no longer carry dlsrls i do miss the look of EP1 photos simply because they remind me of E1 photos.

    • Hi James

      When i look at the many photos i have taken over the years, i would say they are ordinary i suppose they reflect who i am … ordinary.

      I just try to show how i see the world.

  6. Well, DGD, it’s certainly a view swimming against the current of getting the newest thing on the market. I want more pixels! And the images are interesting, so thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks Michiel
      Me too i want more pixels … for nature landscapes 🙂
      I never thought id replace my Sigma DP1, yet DP1M with those ridiculous amounts of pixels …..

  7. To my eye (having shot a lot of film and now some digital) these images appear very digital and nothing like film. Glad you like them and are having fun (which I really do believe is all that matters) but some objectivity is required here.

    • Hi Paddy

      I suppose you are right.
      Though i must say many scanned film displayed on a pc monitor looks digital to me.

      In print it is different.
      Likewise with these victorian sensors.
      In print they look more organic than current sensors.

      There are so many different types of film, slide film is usually easiest to tell even when scanned
      and depends what was used to scan it.

  8. Great post.
    Who doesn’t love to recall the good ol’days of digital. 🙂
    There would have been the same breathlessness and wonder about the introduction of these cameras that there is for the latest hardware.
    In celebration, I’m going to dust off the old Nikon 4500 and make some frames.
    I’m also reminded of this article that I absolutely LOVE. Familiar to many but if you haven’t seen it before:


    • The Coolpix 4500 is actually very good – I still use mine occasionally. When the earlier model the Coolpix 950 hit the market around 12 years ago it was the first high quality digital consumer camera and seeing the output for the first time I was absolutely stunned. A lot has happened since, but those old cameras are still very usable.

  9. Thank you Bgood & Anders.

    There is almost developing a film like pleasure in seeing how photos came out from these cameras.
    C2040 & C2100 take smart media max 128MB i used to like limiting myself to 64MB just trying to make every shot count.

    • I agree. Sometimes I use my old Coolpix 950 (from around 2000) and the images can sometimes have some really nice colors and “grain”. They are not always very sharp, but who cares.

  10. i might be missing something here… Using older digital cameras to look less digital? If you want your pictures to look like film, surely the best way to do that is to shoot film! Then you can try even older cameras to boot and see what real mechanical build quality is like. Nothing electronic can compare to a well built mechanical camera…

    • Hi Mark

      My darkroom days are long gone.
      Tbh i dont even have a spare cupboard to develop in 🙂
      My Minolta Himatic 7, Rollei 35B, Yashica electro 35gt are long gone.
      Though i still hang on to my Om2.

      Nowadays only Medium Format would make me go to film.
      I was in London’s Hydepark festival a gent was photoing with a Hasselblad (i couldn’t say which model). Kudos to the gent and i did there and then wish i too was shooting with a MF film.

  11. Wonderful post, dgd! I also am passionate about these ‘ancient’ cameras. Magnum photographer Alex Majoli used similar versions of your Olympus (the 4040 and 5050) to shoot two wars and the 2008 presidential election for National Geographic and Newsweek — and he won two of photography’s highest awards — all on a camera you could buy today for $45! (Majoli, was also drawn to the camera’s film-like images). Regarding the Sony, I used to think the Zeiss lens on the 505 was just a marketing gimmick — until I shot with one and saw the same wonderful rendering as I had with other Zeiss lenses.

    Strangely enough, even at 100%, the images on these older cameras always looked like actual photographs — unlike the smeared megapixels crowding the sensors of many of today’s cameras. Don’t get me wrong — the present day is certainly an incredible time to be a photographer with phenomenal cameras coming out almost every month (the Fuji X series and Sony’s Rx1 come to mind) — it’s just that there are some great cameras that would be forgotten if not for posts like yours. Thanks.

    • Hi James

      I recall reading on a forum yet couldn’t remember the name.
      C4040 C5050 still had the f1.8 & probably more suitable for publication with their 4mp, 5mp.

      I had Sony f717 as well with still the Zeiss swivel f2.4 at 190mm!
      Imo one of the finest put on a camera.
      (I think the same sensor was in the Digilux2 im not sure).

      • dgd, I also have the Sony f717 (and its sibling the f707). Regarding the lenses on these cameras, I remember one of the Luminous Landscape writers doing a shootout between the Sony Zeiss lens and his impressive Canon L glass — it ended up being somewhat controversial because the Sony’s lens should not have been able to even come close to the L glass — but the author found it to be something of a dead heat between the lenses (wow).

        Also, in Luminous Landscape’s review of the F717, the author noted that only the Digilux 2 impressed him similarly — they just might have shared the same sensor. At 1800 lines of ultimate resolving ability, this 5 megapixel camera resolved much like the 6 megapixel dslrs.

        • Hi James

          I hadn’t read that LL article.

          If mirrorless (MILC) hadn’t come around id still be carrying day to day f717 or f707 esp in London with its crazy architecture (although RX100 is mighty tempting).
          F would still win for me i think because of its swivel lens (as i do get neck strain and being able to shoot from the waist lens vertically up is marvelous).

          That Zeiss given its longer range was imo as fine as on Digilux 2.
          I found f717 viewfinder more convenient that’s why id prefer it to f505 also its 5mp which i feel is a sweet spot for 2/3″.

          I didn’t use it much in low light though ive read its “hologram” focus assist is really useful in locking focus.
          Infa red night mode … i took pictures in total darkness of my kitchen 🙂

      • dgd, for the sake of clarification, I read more of the comments — I am not the “James” who posted the rather negative post in comment 12 below (the problem of having a fairly common name, I guess). I think the images in the article are outstanding.

  12. Im with u on those golden oldy cameras,theres something about the sensors that todays super cameras cant match.I spend a lot of my time with a couple of Olympus cameras a C8080 and C 5060 which i love to death and i also have a lovely Nikon D2H.Having tried so many of the new cameras on the market i find these oldies just have such a nice film like quality about there results and even thought the files produced from the new breed of camera is state of the art they do tend to look oh so digital.

    • Hi Stephen
      I had a C8080 briefly (not long enough to appreciate what a fine camera it is and why it has a cult following).

      I took the J1 with me to Paralympics. For me a Nikon 1 is the only small camera that could do what it did.
      Convenience aside, when i can take my time, a feel for the subject, i do get most satisfaction from the photos the Golden Oldies produce.

    • Can someone help me? What was the message “dgd” was trying to send? I’m sort of missing it. Is there something about the equipment that I should get from this? Or is it just the results that the first two people responding to? Thanks.

      • Hi Steve

        I just like the photos from about decade old digital cameras : slrs & p&s.
        There was something about those Victorian sensors.

      • Mr Steve Seinberg – could you please help me out? “There was something about those huge pixels on those golden oldie sensors a certain richness like film.” Why is that message difficult to comprehend?

        • Thanks for pointing out that one sentence out of many to me. DGD was good enough to explain it without the sarcasm!!!!!!

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