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Kodak M1033 Review – Horrible!

Kodak M1033Wow the Kodak m1033 is an incredibly crappy camera!

The camera was so horrible, that after 2 months (1 month of which was a vacation) we returned it.  Rather than go into any lengthy detail I’ll just state my complaints in bullet-list form.  We all like bullet lists right?

  • Crazy noisy zoom.  Very audible during video.
  • Horrendous low light quality.
  • Completely inaccurate (although pretty) color representation.  There was noticeable color processing once the picture was taken.  It almost seemed like HDR photography.  I could find no way to turn this off.
  • Battery life,  at best 200 shots.
  • To ‘view’ photos the camera must first be turned on.
  • Incredibly slow.  Noticeable camera shutter lag and scrolling through photos.
  • Won’t stand up to even moderate use.
  • Incredibly poor HD quality videos except in the absolute best of light conditions.  Not any worse than expected on such a small sensor ‘HD’ video camera, but still it doesn’t do the camera any favors.
  • The battery had to remain in the camera to be charged, using a proprietary plug (not mini-USB).
  • The Camera tagged the photos as coming from the “eastman kodak company kodak easyshare m1033 digital camera” which is an insanely long name.  Most cameras are similar to ‘Canon 40D’ or ‘Sony Cybershot H5’ at the most.  While this seems like a small deal, to a power user like myself it’s actually quite frustrating.

In Summary

We didn’t go out looking for an insanely superior camera to match up to my DSLR.  Our intention was to get a mediocre camera that would be good enough for moments when I didn’t want to carry the DSLR or moments where I wasn’t with Rachel and she wanted to take a decent picture.  The features of the Kodak M1033 seemed to be a step in the right direction from the Kodak cameras I’d seen in the past, and I wanted to give them a shot, being that they’re a local company and all.  After all, $145 for a compact 10mp camera with a 3″ LCD and 720p HD video wasn’t half bad right? It wouldn’t have been, except that the Kodak M1033 couldn’t deliver.

It’s just a downright crappy camera, and I hate to say it but I won’t be buying Kodak ever again, at least not until I hear glowing reviews.

It's Good to be Back

Guitar Hero IIIWell, Guitar Hero 3 is finally here! When I sold my PS2 and Guitar Hero last year I was almost on the verge of depression (not literally continue reading). I had grown addicted to the game very quickly and couldn’t believe Sony didn’t support it for the PS3! I suffered withdrawal for the first few weeks but eventually learned to deal with it, with the expectation of playing the PS3 version as soon as it arrived.

Now that I have it I’m only half excited. The game is still excellent and extremely fun, however the new controller leaves a lot to be desired. As soon as I opened the box I knew it wasn’t going to be as good as I had hoped. Rather than making use of the built in Bluetooth wireless technology for some reason they opted for some proprietary wireless crap (probably fast RF or something). This means a little USB dongle that needs to be plugged in to the PS3. Not that big of a deal right? WRONG!

Not only does it use a proprietary wireless technology but just getting the guitar and the PS3 to talk is a nightmare! After fiddling with the sync button on the dongle and the PS button on the guitar for the better half of 10 minutes I consulted the manual. I found nothing of any use. I then checked the packaging that contained the stickers and there it is, the setup guide. Ok so what do I have to do? This is the only way (that I’ve found so far) to get the Guitar and the PS3 to talk.

  1. The PS3 must be off.
  2. Turn the PS3 on using the button on the System (NOT on one of the controllers)
  3. Press the PS button on the guitar
  4. Press the sync button on the dongle
  5. Press the PS button on the guitar
  6. BINGO

How retarded is that? First of all you’re not using proven (available) technology. Second of all the user experience is terrible! I have to turn my PS3 OFF to switch to Guitar Hero? WHAT? I understand the requirement of the guitar becoming Player 1 but guess what? You can already reassign controller numbers with 2 button presses from literally anywhere within the menu system or any game.

It’s like they’re not even trying anymore.

Another very minor annoyance is the strum doesn’t click in both directions anymore. If you want the tactile feedback you need to strum in one direction and then the other. Strumming in the same direction twice leads to no feedback the second time.

Beyond that the game itself is solid. Great music, Graphics are awesome. I love the new online play modes as well as some of the new between set animations and the other general feel of the game. I just hate the damn controller. It’s all very silly if you ask me. How hard is it to embed a six-axis control system into a plastic guitar? Some guy already did it by himself so he could play guitar hero 1 and 2.

That being said its good to be back, even if I do end up returning it for the Wii version.

Another Ps3 Flop

Nariko - Heavenly SwordSunday Charles and I killed a few hours playing Heavenly Sword. I say a few hours because that’s all it took. About 6 hrs in all which is pretty sad for a game that was supposed to be the turning point for the Ps3.

The combat system was awesome, a 9/10. The graphics an easy 11/10, the storyline a 5 and the length well… lets say it averages the game out to a solid rental and not much more.

I think the Ps3 might be doomed to less than glorious exclusive titles forever. They’ve lost so many exclusives that it makes me sick. Even the new exclusive game I heard about today, Project Offset, is now rumored to be released for the 360 as well.

What are we Ps3 owners going to do in the face of such games as BioShock and Halo 3? We need a game Sony!!!

In other news I just checked and everything up to is taken. Anyone interested in investing in with me?

Let your words be few, and your exposures many

Sony DSC H5

For a while now I’ve been using my trusty H5 and I’ve learned quite a bit about photography. I bought my H5 because it’s essentially an SLR without the interchangeable lens and flash hot shoe. Both of these features are very important, however the lens built into the H5 is a 36mm-432mm (35mm equivalent) and the flash is actually quite versatile. I can step the flash up and down in power with a total of 10 steps. This all comes included for the small price of $500 (retail price when purchased over a year ago). The same setup with an SLR would have easily run me in the thousands and at the time I wasn’t sure I wanted to dedicate that much money into my new hobby just yet.

The H5 has been a wonderful learning tool, and I truly feel everyone who wants to delve into photography should take a Full Featured as their first real step. It (cheaply) allows you a very wide range in the type of shots you can take, so you find out whether or not its something you really want to do and if so, what type of shots you like to take. If you buy a full featured camera like the H5 and you find yourself leaving it in ‘auto’ mode all the time you’ll be missing out on a lot of really wonderful shots. You probably wouldn’t benefit much from the switch to an SLR either.

That brings me to my next tidbit. I will be retiring the H5 soon. I’ve decided I need to make the switch. I have been looking for a while and thought I had decided on the Canon 30D. Until this morning. The only thing lacking in the 30D is a high resolution sensor. I loved the camera, the feel of it, the screen size, feature set, speed everything. However; I felt that if I were going to switch to an SLR I wanted at least 10 megapixels. Everyone is going to say:

but it doesn’t really matter, 3 or 4 is plenty 90% of the time!

And they’d be right, for 90% of people taking photographs. However; by making the switch to an SLR I’m taking one (small) step towards attempting to make money with my hobby. To do so I need to be able to print very large, and make very small crops. Therefor I need as much detail in the shots as possible.

This morning amazon slipped up and accidentally announced the Canon EOS 40D ahead of schedule. This camera is a thing of beauty (providing the accidentally leaked info is accurate). The three main upgrades from the 30D that I’m concerned about are:

  • Increased efficiency 10.1-megapixel CMOS sensor with larger microlenses
  • Large 3.0-inch LCD display
  • 6.5 frame-per-second continuous shooting capability

For a full breakdown of the features (as temporarily listed by amazon) click here.

Looks like I might have found my new baby.

The 40D - Top The 40D - Back

I think it's trying to communicate…

Apparently I’m the last person on the Net to see this Sony video:

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