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Before you dive into this page, if you want to see the fruits of my labour, click Photo Albums on the left... right now (mid 2010) it is all still in its early stages though i.e. more content will go onto this page plus a lot more photo albums will go into the collection of photo albums in the future.
This section is about the equipment I use for one of my hobbies — photography and filming. As the former sentences implies, this includes photos (static images) as well as videos (dynamic images with or without audio).
Around mid 2006 I figured I had the need for a digital voice note taker and so I walked the net in order to get a nifty gadget that might serve me as a note taker. Well, nice plan indeed but what would I do if I also needed to take a still or wanted to catch a hilarious scene on video?
One does not need to be a genius to figure that continuing like this he might end up with at least 2 gadgets which was totally unacceptable to me. I had the need for an all-in-one gadget that would allow me to take digital voice notes, dynamic as well as static images (photos and videos that is) and maybe do a few other desirable things. Oh, and last but not least, it would be nice if I would not need an elephant to carry that thingy around ;-]
Easy thought but... Well, after surfing the net for ~4 hours I was pretty much disenchanted. There was no all-in-one-fit-in-my-pocket gadget on the radar so far. Then, before I decided to postpone this undertaking for another two years or so came the turning point — hard-nosed that I am, I made my last click onto a del.icio.us bookmark and heaven opened up and angels started singing... never stopped since then...
Go here for more photos...
Samsung VP-MS15 specifications:
Samsung decided to introduce Miniket as a range of products that is versatile in its category. First there was video and photo, later on MP3 and voice recorder, add data storage and web cam to it and you have a multifunctional digital camera that will make life easier. The Samsung VP-MS15 has a 5.25 Megapixel CCD on board and 3x optical zoom.
As a digital still camera the Samsung Miniket Photo VP-MS15 is looking stylish and has a fresh design. Although the camera only provides a 3x optical zoom it has a digital image stabilizer (DIS) that will guarantee sharp images even when someone is on the move and it eliminates blurry shakiness. When turned around, we see a large 2.5-inch display for viewing or composing the images where one can navigate around using a little button-like joystick which I personally find pretty good compared to some two axis buttons with cell phones that we all hate to the guts for not doing what we want them to do.
Integrated into the Miniket Photo is an MP3 player. Despite the size of only a business card at 96cc, the Miniket Photo has a large built-in memory capacity of 512MB. In addition to that, I am able to store up to ~200 songs with my 1GB external miniSD card. With the voice recorder function it is possible to easily record meetings and lectures. I never tried but Samsung states it is possible to record up to 17 hours in stereo sound with the built-in microphone.
So, that leaves me with 1.5GB storage which is even enough when I go on holidays for three weeks or so — once I did that and came home with around 680 photos (1600x1200 pixels) and 4 videos and there where still 400 MB left for more nerdy adventures stuff. Now (November 2007), a year later you can simply exchange the 1GB miniSD card with a state of the art 8GB miniSD card.
Besides capturing static images the Samsung VP-MS15 is also capable of capturing dynamic images. The built-in camcorder function captures high quality VGA (640 x 480 pixels) clips at 30fps with the use of DIS (digital image stabilizer). During recording you are able to zoom in 3x (optically). When not recording but only transmitting via AV out the VP-MS15 digital camera makes clips in a resolution of 720 x 576 pixels at 25fps. Those of you who like chatting in combination with a web cam can use the Miniket to do so. I do so and it is pure hilarity since I have the Miniket mounted on a little tripod which is fantastic in terms of handling etc.
I can just strongly recommend to get a little tripod that can be carried around and placed on any desk, tree, stone etc. — this comes in especially handy when you are out in the wilderness on your own and want to take an image of yourself using the tripod mounted Miniket Photo with its self timer.
A tripod it is not just great while using the Miniket as web cam but also when I simply download the multimedia stuff I came home with since instinctively, I place the tripod mounted Miniket as if it where another screen in a dashboard... It almost makes me feel a bit like Spock since I get status information from Minikets's 2.5-inch display next to the other screens around me.
The Miniket can also be used as a portable hard drive. Miniket Photo's built-in memory of 512MB makes transferring files and images from a PC to the Miniket Photo or vice versa via USB 2.0 very easy (especially when using GNU Emacs with Dired). If the built-in memory is not sufficient one can enlarge it with an external miniSD card as I already stated above.
Samsung designed the Miniket with flexibility in mind. An intentional mode dial key (see image above) provides easy and quick control. For added convenience. What turned out to be especially useful is charging the Miniket via its USB connection to PC so that there is no need to travel with a power cable or optional charger e.g. usually when I come home, the storage is filled with multimedia data but the battery is pretty much empty — after plugging and downloading the stuff it is the opposite again; storage empty, battery loaded. The recharging took place during the input processing of the multimedia data I came home with.
My bottom line about the Miniket Photo is easy to summarize: go get one!
Don't buy a camera because a salesman tries to smoke you with
File output Formats
Aperture and Focal Length
Wireless File Transmitter
Straps and Shoulder Mounts
Static HTML Gallery
Where to buy