Kodak DC215 Review

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  • Image Quality

  • Battery Life

  • Features

  • Ease of Use

  • Value For Money

Damian Cartwright.'s review of Kodak DC215

★★★★☆

“After spending the day shopping around for a digital...”

Written on: 28/08/2000 by Damian Cartwright. (1 review written)

Good Points
Easy user interface.
1.8" LCD viewfinder.
Optical viewfinder.
X2 Zoom.
Red-eye reduction.
Good interface software, TWAIN compliant.
Close-up mode, (8 inches)

Bad Points
Extremely rapid battery usage.
No manual control of shutter speed, or other normally standard options.
Only 12 pictures stored on supplied 4MB RAM card.
No carry-case.
Heavy (around 300g without the 4 batteries)
The ergonomics of the unit make you want to place your right thumb over the LCD; it's too far to the right.
The TV out doesn't supply live feeds to the TV.
Slight 'Ghosting' artefacts around high contrast objects.
Unprotected LCD, easy to damage.

General Comments
After spending the day shopping around for a digital camera, comparing sample photos of the different makes, and checking the features of each camera, I finally settled on this one by Kodak. With a clear photo, good contrast and realistic flesh tones along with the optical zoom facility (as opposed to digital zoom) and an attractive and compact design, this camera was excellent value for money. Having never used a digital camera before, I was surprised to find that I had it up and running within 5 minuets thanks to it's intuitive graphic user interface.

Besides the standard picture size settings, (only 2, 1152x864 and 640x480) and 3 picture compression settings the unit doesn't really offer anything more in picture control. A 'template' option allows a rather limited in use frame to be placed around your composition, and there's a date stamp option.
The power usage of the camera is horrendous, lasting less than 3 hours with the supplied batteries, and the fact that the battery indicator only shows 2 states full/nearly empty, it is very hard to judge just how much battery life you have left. So you definitely need 2 sets of rechargeable batteries.

The software to allow the computer to communicate with the digital camera installed without a hitch, allowing me to use PSP 6 to preview and download the images I wanted. Downloading pictures by the serial port takes around 1.3 minutes per photo, taken at highest resolution and minimum compression. (around a 350k picture) The supplied flashcard allows around 12 photos at this setting. So if you are planning on using a 64MB memory card, the AC power pack is advisable.

The unit allows you to connect it to your TV via a phono type connector, which unfortunately you don't normally get on the back of a TV (at least in the UK), but you can buy a 3 channel phono connector (2 sound/1 picture) to SCART converter from Tandys for around £4, then setting your TV to the SCART input should work. The output is NOT what you would normally get on the built in LCD, but rather requires you to select "review" on the unit to produce a full screen image of the first picture stored in the camera, pressing the < and > arrows allows you to cycle through them, because of this limitation of "Review" output only, you can't use the unit as a cheap video camera.

For the price, the unit gives good quality pictures, without any of the (necessary?) frills you normally get with more expensive cameras. To sum up, a good bye.

  • Value For Money

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