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Old Sep 9, 2003, 10:11 PM   #1
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Default Expected lifetime of camera, in thousands of photos?

I've taken over 6,000 pictures in the first six months of
having my first-ever camera, a Casio QV-R4. I take
the camera with me almost every day, snapping several
shots of each thing to make sure I get at least one good
shot, and experimenting a lot with focus and other settings.

Now that the camera is not really "new" any more, I
suddenly began wondering how many pictures it'll take
before things fail. I turn the camera on and off several
times per day, and I vary the focus several times each
"session" of having the camera on for a few minutes, and
I switch to macro mode fairly often. Thus, I'm exercising
the lens-extension and auto-focus mechanism frequently.

I don't want to slow down, because I want lots of practice,
and it's fun. How long will the different components last,
and how expensive will it be to get repairs?

Thanks,
Robby Villegas
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Old Sep 9, 2003, 11:15 PM   #2
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Most Nikon non-professional (8008, F100, and others ) SLR cameras (and their DSLR like the D100) are rated at... I think.... 150,000 shutter clicks. I know a semi-pro shooter told me the number... but I don't remember if that was it.

What it is on the lower end consumer grade cameras I don't know. Nore do I know if others follow their lead and rate them that high.

Eric
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Old Sep 9, 2003, 11:40 PM   #3
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Default Re: Expected lifetime of camera, in thousands of photos?

Quote:
Originally Posted by villegas
How long will the different components last,
and how expensive will it be to get repairs?
I wonder about this too. However, the technology is a bit simpler than camcorders (no tape transport mechanism; intermittent rather than continuous auto-focus). I bought my first (cheap Ricoh=badged Sony) Video8 camcorder in summer 1991, and my second in September 1997. The first is still just about serviceable after a 50ukpound tape transport repair, and the second now has a minor, intermittent, and tolerable tape transport fault.

On my digicam, it's the battery=powered lens getting out and putting away mechanism that worries me. However, there's plenty of track record with these on 35mm compact and APS zoom cameras, so it should be well-established technology. In the trade I bet there are statistics hidden somewhere for mean time before failure (MTBF).

On most of the antique purely electronic & non-mechanical gadgets I have possessed (e.g., Sinclair Scientific pocket calculator, 1971) it's the buttons, switches and connectors that have failed first, so we're dependent on 'build quality' and quality of minor components.
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Old Sep 11, 2003, 9:03 PM   #4
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Some mechanisms I'm concerned about:

(1) The motorized lens extension, as I turn the camera
on and off several times per day.

(2) I zoom back and forth, and switch to and from macro
mode, frequently during each session of having the
camera on for, say, ten minutes. Thus, again the
motorized lens control takes a lot of hits.

(3) The auto-focus, as I sometimes try several times
for each shot, most often because a low-light shot
takes some experimenting as to where to point the
thing.

(4) I turn the LCD off after almost every shot or few
shots, then turn it back on when I find a new shot,
anywhere from twenty seconds to a couple minutes later.


I don't use the flash excessively, since I like to brace the
camera against something when I do a low-light shot
(using night or manual mode for longer exposure). Maybe
for me, the flash won't be the first thing to go!


Robby
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Old Sep 12, 2003, 12:55 PM   #5
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I must admit I've never worried about this - perhaps I should - but I figure that this technology is moving and developing so fast, that I'm more likely to upgrade before anything wears out. I've taken a quite a lot of photos with my Fuji 602 (perhaps 10,000+) in 10 months and with all things mechanical, if you handle them with respect and take care of the equipment it should serve you well - nothing can legislate for things simply failing or breaking, I'm sure even the best built ones will demonstrate occasional and unexplained failures.

I've always adopted the attitude of treating all equipment with care, clean it before putting away, remove batteries before leaving unattended, handle gently, put down gently and don't bash buttons hard etc. You buy a camera to use it and enjoy it and experimenting with it is the great joy of the digital medium.

So I'd recommend not worrying about it unduly, just treat it with appropriate respect and most of all enjoy it. I'd suspect that unless you keep it long after the technology has left you behind, you'll still not wear it out. I'd worry more about dropping it or sitting on it!
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Old Sep 17, 2003, 7:11 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boo
remove batteries before leaving unattended
I have to disagree totally with this statement...many digital cameras lose presets and the picture count when batteries are removed for an extended period (some cameras it's as little as an hour).

For my own camera if I'm going to be using it within the next week I'll leave the AA NiMHs in them...if I'm not going to be using the camera for a longer period I'll install lithium batteries instead as they aren't self-discharging. The only time that I don't have batteries in my camera is the 20 seconds that I'm changing the batteries!
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Old Sep 17, 2003, 11:50 PM   #7
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So they don't have a smaller battery designed to keep the presets and the clock and such going? I always assumed that this is how they all worked... but honestly never looked into it.

Eric
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Old Sep 18, 2003, 12:30 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eric s
So they don't have a smaller battery designed to keep the presets and the clock and such going? I always assumed that this is how they all worked... but honestly never looked into it.
Actually, we just had this same topic in the Olympus forum over the last few days...it was asked why the camera was losing its settings with changing of the batteries, and why the Olys only keep the settings/time for only an hour; what I wrote:

"Don't forget there is a HUGE capacitor inside the camera for the flash...probably most of the time it's charged to the battery voltage so it's enough to keep the settings intact for an hour while you change batteries."
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Old Sep 18, 2003, 1:56 AM   #9
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Canons do have a smaller user replacable battery. I guess it just depends on the brand of camera.
It would be a real pain on a canon if they didn't. There are a lot of things to set (though a lot of it is gimicky crap).
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Old Sep 18, 2003, 8:53 AM   #10
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It depends on the camera. Professional dSLR's are generally rated for around 150,000 shutter actuations before requiring shutter replacement, but prosumer dSLR's like the D30, D60, etc., are suspect at over 40,000 though some have gone south at 30,000 and others are still going strong at 60,000.

Consumer digicams often have purly electronic shutters where dSLR's usually have both in the case of CCD cameras and mechanical in the case of CMOS cameras. The most actuations I've heard of with consumer/prosumer non-SLR types was a little over 60,000 images on a Sony DSC-F707. It would be unusual to expect too many more than this due to mechanical actuation of the zoom mechanism, etc.

Lin
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