James's Camera Collection: Vivitar and Innovage Mini Digital cameras

Vivitar Mini Digital / Innovage Mini Digital Japan 35mm cameras
Vivitar Mini Digital camera
Camera type: Point-n-shoot
Approx. street value: $10

I actually have two of these. One is branded as a Vivitar Mini Digital, and the other is an Innovage Mini Digital: same camera, the only difference is the Vivitar is blue and the Innovage is metallic.

This is one of those things they sell for around $10 or $15 at drug stores. It's very small: it makes my Canon S100 look huge next to it. Runs off one AAA battery. it's got two buttons: the shutter on the top and a "mode" selection on the front. Helps tremendously if you have the instruction manual so you can decypher the two-letter "mode" on the front LCD panel, but chances are you can noodle it through on your own if you really try. Basically you have quality modes: so-so and worthless. On "high" quality you get around 18 shots. Data transfer is via a USB-like cord, except that the camera-end is even smaller than USB 2.0. I don't know if you can get the cable. I had to dig through a bucket of cables that I keep in the garage to find it. Also requires (I believe) a disc with the drivers. I think I have the disc: if I can find it, I'll put it here as a ZIP file.

Optical quality is about what you get on cellphones these days. It's acceptable if you're used to looking at the world through smudged glasses; otherwise using it is an act of desperation when all other avenues are closed. A shame, too: it's meant to make a nice key fob or tuck easily in a small pocket. But actually using it is next to pointless.

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