Kodak DC Series
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The Kodak DC series was Kodak's pioneering consumer-grade line of digital cameras; as distinct from their much more expensive professional Kodak DCS series. Cameras in the DC series were manufactured and sold during the mid-to-late 1990s and early 2000s. Some were branded as "Digital Science". Most of these early digital cameras supported RS-232 serial port connections because USB hardware was not widely available before 1998.
The DC series was superseded by the Kodak EasyShare camera line.
The Kodak DC20 was an early digital camera released by Kodak in 1996. It had a manufacturer's suggested retail price of US$299 when most other digital cameras at the time cost well over $1000. The DC20 only had the most basic features of a digital camera: It had no liquid crystal display (LCD) for reviewing pictures. It came with only 1 megabyte of internal flash memory, which could only store 8 or 16 images, depending on image quality, and did not support external flash memory. It had no built-in photo flash. Its CCD sensor had a maximum resolution of 493x373 pixels. It had a fixed focal length f/4 lens, equivalent to 47 mm for 35 mm single lens reflex film cameras.
With physical dimensions of 31 x 102 x 61 mm, the Kodak DC20 was the first ultracompact digital camera. Its sleek compact size would remain unrivaled until the release of the Canon Digital Ixus and Casio Exilim.
There were several add-on lenses released for the Kodak DC20. These included a macro adapter, a telephoto converter, and a wide-angle converter from Tiffen. These were clip-on lenses since the original lens had no thread. There was also an add-on photo flash unit made by Kodak.
The Kodak DC25 was released about the same time as the Kodak DC20. They shared the same form factor and shape, and used the same 493x373 pixel CCD sensor and 47 mm-equivalent lens. However the DC25 was considerably larger than the DC20 because it carried an LCD display for picture review. Moreover, the Kodak DC25 was among the first cameras to have a PCMCIA slot to support CompactFlash cards for external storage. It did not support the JPEG image file format, storing images in Kodak's proprietary K25 file format instead, as the JPEG image standard was very new and still under development at the time the camera was being designed.
Released in 1995, the DC40 is Kodak's own branded version of the Apple QuickTake 100, which Kodak also manufactured. It came with fixed focal length lens of 37 mm-equivalent and a 768x512 pixel CCD sensor. It came with 4 megabyte of internal flash memory storage and did not have any capabilities for using external memory. It also did not have an LCD for picture display. The cost was $1,000.
This early digital camera was essentially the same as the Chinon ES-3000, Dycam 10C, and Ritz Dakota; but with improved software. The Kodak DC50 featured a 3:1 zoom lens (38 mm to 114 mm-equivalent), built-in photo flash and a PCMCIA slot for CompactFlash external memory. It came with a black and white text LCD to report basic camera statistics, but did not come with a graphical LCD for picture review. The Kodak DC50 had a 756x504 pixel color CCD sensor, just like the Kodak DC40. It did not support the JPEG image file format and stored images in Kodak's proprietary KDC file format
Released in 1997, the Kodak DC120 had a similar size and form factor as the DC40 and the DC50. Like the DC50, it also had a 3:1 zoom lens. However, it boasted a larger 1280x960 pixel CCD sensor and built-in photo flash. It had 2 megabytes of internal picture storage and supported CompactFlash external memory storage. It also had a color LCD for picture review. It continued to use Kodak's KDC file format. The camera had an optical viewfinder with dual target rings in the center to account for parallax over the zoom range.
The DC120 required 6 to 6.8 volts DC power, supplied by four AA-size 1.7 V lithium primary cells. Although nickel-metal hydride (Ni-MH) 1.25 V or nickel-cadmium (Ni-Cd) 1.2 V cells could be used, due to their lower capacity and discharge characteristics they needed to be replaced frequently — every 20 to 30 pictures, or so. Ordinary alkaline or carbon-zinc primary cells could be used for daylight photography and during storage to keep the camera's internal clock running and preserve settings, but they had excessive internal resistance and insufficient current capacity to power the camera when the photo flash was in use. An optional external AC adapter could also be used, supplying 7-8 VDC via a coaxial power plug, for transferring pictures to a computer or for fixed use indoors.
Full model list
- DC20 — 0.2 megapixel, 47 mm equivalent lens, fixed
- DC25 — 0.2 megapixel, 47 mm equivalent lens, fixed, CompactFlash slot
- DC40 — 0.38 megapixel, 37 mm equivalent lens, fixed
- DC50 — 0.38 megapixel, 38–114 mm equivalent lens, CompactFlash slot
- DC120 — 1 megapixel, 38–114 mm equivalent lens, CompactFlash slot
- DC200 Plus
- DC210 Plus
- DC215 — 1 megapixel, 2x zoom lens
- DC3200 — 1 megapixel, fixed lens
- DC5000 — 2 megapixel, 2x zoom, weatherproof rugged camera