Death Of A Camera: Cheerio, Kodak Z740

Posted by on Jan 20, 2012 in The Everyday | 10 Comments

The rain twists slowly across the landscape. It hisses around me, making the world sound like a dead channel, and it clatters against the back of my waterproof as I hunch over my rucksack to fish out my camera.

What a view.

“Please, let nothing change – this is perfect,” I say to myself, ignoring the fact that physically I’m in a fairly miserable state. However, just for a few minutes I will be able to banish what my rational brain is telling me – that my so-called waterproof trousers obviously aren’t, that I’m standing on a Northumbrian hillside in the rain on December 29th, while other people are laying on the floor and groaning from being mince-pied and turkeyed to the brink of death, and it’s only a matter of time until my boots fill with water, at which point Full-Blown Misery will commence. For a few minutes, I can put the camera up to my eye, and the world will recede, the same way it does when I’m tapping out or scribbling down words. For a very short while, it will be nice to not be here.

I compose my shot, hold down the shutter release…

That’s odd.

I check the batteries. Oh well, I’ve had these rechargeables for years – I know they’re topped up because I did it last night, but maybe their charge has shallowed out with use. Fair enough. I dig out the pack of brand new batteries I bought at Hexham Tesco the day before, spend a few moments cursing because my fingers are too cold to lever the plastic away from the cardboard back, and pop 2 fully-charged AA cells into my camera.

I turn it on.

After a few seconds, the power indicator flashes red – and it shuts down again.

Alas. After ten years, my trusty point & click Kodak Z740 is no more.

But I can’t complain. I knew it was coming, which is why I’d been scanning point & click camera options for the last year. I wasn’t using it to learn to take photos – that’s what my Canon EOS30D is for.

Still, ten years is a lot of photos, even for someone as erratic with a camera as I am…

Ten years is a good time for a camera to last. But it’s a royal pain that I’ve discovered this at the beginning of my walk. Well, c’est la merde. I shove the inert, suddenly useless lump of metal back into my rucksack, turn and trudge onwards.

My Kodak Z740 is dead.

(Oh HAI,  just-arrived Panasonic Lumix).

All photos: Mike Sowden.

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  1. sharon miro
    January 20, 2012

    Gorgeous….and people say that a point & shoot doesn’t take good pictures. If you are looking, the camera is really secondary.

    • Mikeachim
      January 24, 2012

      Sometimes, the scenery does ALL the work. ;)

      Thanks, Sharon.

  2. pam
    January 22, 2012

    That night shot, in the market/restaurant street? Lovely. Really really really lovely.

    • Mikeachim
      January 24, 2012

      T’was. That was a deliciously warm night in Chania, Crete, and I was hunting for a free and fairly inexpensive table for one. I can’t remember what I ate, or where I sat – I just remember the light and the shadow, and the way the whole street felt so genial and welcoming. Goosepimples, remembering it.

  3. Katja
    January 22, 2012

    The Lumix is well lush. I’m considering getting one as my ‘carryinmypocket’ camera. I’ve been considering it for a while. I should really have got one when my G9 was stolen before Christmas, but my ma (bless her cottons) was hell-bent on getting me a like-for-like replacement. So I have a G9. Which I can’t currently make talk to my Macbook. Sigh.

    Also? What Pam said about the night shot of the restaurants? Spot on. Same goes for the men in armour.

    • Mikeachim
      January 24, 2012

      The Canon Powershot G9? Looks a nice piece of kit. I can’t blame you (or your Ma)…

      The Lumix is so tiny and portable and cute it makes me want to stroke it with cooing noises. Unfortunately/luckily, I’m a Real Man. What photos I’ve taken have been crystal-clear. Really powerful little gizmo. But I need to get back up Hadrian’s Wall way to see what it’s capable of.

      Ta for your kind words. :) The shiny-headed men? York Viking Festival. Perhaps obviously. Maybe I’ll just shut up now. Yes, that’d be best, Mike.

  4. What We’re Reading: Map Eye-Candy, a Fail-Safe Way to Avoid Crowds, and More | Country to Travel
    January 27, 2012

    [...] croaks. If you’ve been there, you’ll appreciate travel blogger Mike Sowden’s eloquent account of his Kodak Z740′s ill-timed demise. By the end of the post, we were shedding a tear for the [...]

  5. Fredi Ferdianto
    February 25, 2012

    Soo… I have a school contest. You have to make a film with a specific topic. I have my idea and everything…but I need a camera. I really want it to have awesome quality I already have a standard camera (that like takes pictures and everything, but has a video setting) Do you think a regular camera will be good? Or do you think I should get an actual video camera?If so, do you have any good recommendations? Perferbly something cheap. If you were me, what would you do?


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