I don’t know exactly what that means, but it sounded kind of catchy when I was coming up with a title. So have I got a deal for you. Check out the specs on this state-of-the-art camera:
- Format – SLR
- Sensor Type – CCD
- Effective Pixels – 1.5MP
- ISO – 100, 200, 400
- Focal Length Multiplier – 2.6X
- Frames Per Second – 2fps for 5 frames
- Image Format – Uncompressed RAW (no JPEG)
- Weight – 3.75 pounds
- PRICE – $7,995.00 USD
That, my friends was the Kodak DCS 420 digital SLR. Released in 1994, it was the king of the hill in digital cameras. Those beautiful 1.5MP images were the toast of the town and they sold like hotcakes to working professionals the world over. So, for a mere $8000 you could own a camera that had worse resolution as most cell phones do today. By the way, that price tag works out to about $11,683 in 2008 dollars. So in just 14 short years, the image sensor has grown to 24.5 MP, or about 17.5 times the resolution. I’m just wondering what the D3X would have cost in 1994. Let’s see, at around $5,700 per MP, it would work out to about $139,650.
Is the D3X expensive? It is to me and most shooters I hang around with. Is it worth the price to commercial and fine art photographers who are printing large and need a rugged, professional camera, I am betting yes. Let’s face it, not every camera that comes out of Canon or Nikon or anyone else’s factory is going to be meant for every photographer. The fact that I have been reading a lot of griping and sniping about the D3X price leads me to wonder why no one is crying foul at Hasselblad or Phase One for the price of their digital backs, and they don’t even include the camera. The truth is that Nikon has always served the needs of different segments of the marketplace. The D1 was a professional camera, the D1x was meant for studio and fine art photographers, the D1H serviced the needs of the press, the D100 was for pros and advanced amateurs, and the D70 was for the advanced amateur. And just as now, they were priced accordingly.
So don’t be a hater, just realize that not all technology that comes out is meant for every shooter but in the long run, it will benefit everyone by driving up the quality of the technology and making it more affordable in future cameras. By the way, you can pick up a nice DCS 420 for about $69 on eBay.