Advantages Quite pleasant to use, reasonably compact, acceptable results, very cheap
Disadvantages Far fewer features than even a basic digital camera, film processing is an extra cost
One of the more startling results of the digital photography revolution that has taken place over the last decade and a half is the almost complete removal of film photography from the mainstream. These days, almost nobody in the ordinary consumer market chooses film unless they are using a disposable camera, and with mobile phone camera quality having come on in leaps and bounds even those are beginning to become less of a special case. One result of this change is that charity shops now frequently sell off really quite decent compact film cameras for an absolute pittance – as little as a couple of pounds – and this is one I've seen there, although my own is actually one bought way back when film was still fairly common.
As you might expect from a (nearly) last-generation film compact, the Zoom 60 is quite nicely packaged. The silver colour makes it look rather more like a digital camera of the era than many of its competitors, which kept with the black that was once – and now is again – the colour people expected no-nonsense cameras to be. The proportions are quite attractive too, with the zoom lens placed almost centrally, and the flash unit up in the top corner next to the large viewfinder. This isn't large on the back, however, so people who wear glasses might find it just a little awkward to compose a picture. I do, but only very slightly. A basic mono LCD panel on the top of the camera tells you how far through a film you are, and whether flash is turned on.By film camera standards the Zoom 60 is very compact, and in fact it's not that much larger than the digicams of the day. Minolta had the decency to include a reasonably good grip, allowing fairly secure one-handed shooting, but you will need to be careful if you're not used to film cameras as the weight of batteries, film and unit together is fairly considerable. As is the case with almost all relatively recent film compacts, there's a little window on the back to allow you to check what type of film you have loaded, and while I'm on that subject I'll mention that loading the film itself is easy... provided you've done it before. If not, you might want to ask someone with a little film experience to show you how it's done to avoid messing up the film itself.
The Zoom 60, as its name does rather suggest, is a zoom compact camera, though with a rather limited range of 35 to 60 mm. It's a bit of a shame that there isn't more of a wide-angle option at the near end – a 28-60 lens would be much more useful, to my mind – but if you try to think of it as a fixed-zoom camera then the 1.
|Range & Quality of Features|
|Ease of Use|
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Memory Type: CompactFlash Memory Size: 8 GB Class (speed): 100x Brand: Maxram
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