Sony DSC-V1

This is like taking a trip to the memory lane. Digging out some old camera equipment does bring back a lot of memories.  In a way, if not for the nostalgia, it is also a revelation to see how technology has come such a long way.

The Sony DSC-V1 is the second Sony digital camera I have used. At the time, it was pretty state of the art. It was announced in 2003 and we got it in the later part of the year. It was a great little camera.

More specs can be found at

With a 4X optical zoom range, it was modest but it covers a nice range of 34 to 136mm. And at a maximum aperture of f/2.8, it was a rare combination and we really enjoyed using it.

Apart from the different modes you can use using the mode dial, it also allows you to use a Nightshot and Nightframing mode.  In these modes, the infrared filter in front of the sensor will be lifted, allowing the camera to operate in the infrared spectrum. The body also has an infrared emitter which helps to illuminate your field of view using infrared.  It was a neat idea.

The hot shoe for external flash was also a great bonus. However, we never spent money on it’s accessories other than extra batteries.

I guess at that time, the 5-way command buttons were already pretty standard.  But what is extra and a nice feature is the jog-dial wheel just above the command buttons for selecting aperture and shutter speed values. It is definitely a lot more natural than fiddling around with buttons.

The LCD screen was considered average at that time at 1.5″. These days, I wonder how we decided if a picture was good enough just by looking at such a small and low-resolution LCD screen. The viewfinder was pretty useless unless you are taking photos during bright daylight and the LCD is washed out.  I am glad most point and shoot cameras don’t bother to include this feature anymore.

I think when this camera decided to fail, we started looking for a replacement and it took us a while to finally found the Panasonic Lumix LX3 to replace it. We needed the manual controls like aperture and shutter speed, and there weren’t a lot of choices at the time unless we went for the bulkier models. We weren’t going to give up being able to put the camera into our pockets and ended up paying a little extra to get the LX3.  We are still using the LX3 today.  Also, we decided against getting another Sony because we didn’t want to keep buying proprietary memory sticks.  SD cards work out just fine for us.

How many digital cameras have you owned? Do you keep the old ones around?

4 replies
  1. Teng
    Teng says:

    Used to own a Sony DSC-P200 since 2000. Used it til it went bust (white screen on every image), then bought a DSC-W80. Also own a Japanese used DSC-H3 from YJA which is very nice indeed.

    • Kam
      Kam says:

      We stopped using Sony for a while because they used to have their own proprietary memory cards and they are significantly more expensive than regular SD cards. It is not until recently that we started using a Sony NEX-5N again and we are glad we can use SD cards with this camera, and the image quality is very nice with the NEX-5N.


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