Have you ever wondered how did the first digital images look like?
Here it goes :)
Some time ago I managed to revive and take pictures with Kodak 520 (Canon body). The camera story is here and some awesome pictures are here .
Now it was Kodak' DCS 420 turn.
Kodak DCS 420 was announced in 1994 and built around Nikon N90 camera body with 1.5 megapixel (1524 x 1012 pixels, 2.6x crop factor) Kodak sensor. The price tag was around $ 12,000 ( who said that new Leicas are overpriced??), but by today's standards it is just an 18 years old digital antique.
Couple months ago I acquired DCS 420 body almost in mint condition for $40 at a local pawn shop. It came with Viper 260 MB PCMCIA hard drive, but no battery charger. I thought it will be just a nice exhibit in my collection. A well preserved piece of digital history.
But I was very much surprised to find that brand new chargers and the batteries are still available on the internet and there is a hope to revive it.
Next step, I replaced the battery followed simple instructions from Kodak. It took about 20 min. Looks scary, but it was very easy, even for me :)
I charged the new battery for about 2 hours and then took some shots with Nikkor AIS 24 mm and 105 mm lenses.
Supplied PCMCIA hard drive works well but required to install an old PCMCIA reader into my PC (never throw old computer parts away!). More modern 2Gb flash card with adapter worked too, but with constant error messages.
Another challenge was to process native Kodak tif files.
Adobe ACR reads them, but hue is way off.
Another option is to use DCS converter from NikonWeb, more accurate, but still off
or just go with plain B&W :)
Some other samples, with my humble attempt to get the best results with the help of CS
So far so good. I got images from an 18 years old camera and they look OK. The camera is not just an exhibit in my collection anymore, but actually it is a working camera, to a certain degree of course.