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Archiver > TMG > 2001-06 > 0993676513

Subject: Re: [TMG] Re: Digital Cameras
Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2001 17:15:13 EDT

We've been spending some time looking at digital cameras and have
decided to purchase the new Nikon 995 (and agree with Greg on everything he
said about his Nikon 990). Lee said that the additional pixels are not worth
the expense but if you are planning on printing the photographs for long term
retention and not just keeping them for viewing on your computer, there is a
significant difference in the resolution, particularly at the 8 x 10 size.
We are also planning on purchasing a stand alone drive (probably 20 gig) that
you can download your digital photo card to for later transfer to your
computer. If you are on a long trip you don't need several memory cards
(fairly expensive items) and you can capture many photographs using just one
card and don't have to take your lap top with you.
I am also planning on saving the photos as TIFF files which take much
more room than JPEG files but when you are going to have them printed, the
JPEG resolution is very poor in comparison. You can always convert them to
JPEG from TIFF if you are sending them over the internet or want to have some
photos that you attach to your TMG database and don't want to use up disk
space on your computer.
Also another major concern in that case is the expected life of the
printed photographs. Most photos printed on home printers have very limited
expected life spans, as short as several years or less when fading will
start. If you want something that will last as long as you do, you can have
the digital photos printed by a commercial photo lab (locally Ritz Photo has
a lab that will print from your digital camera card, CDs, floppies, etc.) or
use a printer that uses archival ink and acid free paper. We just acquired
an Epson 2000P printer, which Epson guarantees will produce pictures that
will last 200 years on matte paper and 140 years on glossy (if we could only
be around long enough to see if we need to have them honor the guarantee :) ).
Also, if you are planning on printing your digital photos of documents
(or any other documents -- family group sheets, pedigree charts, etc.), you
will have the same issue with longevity -- unless you are using archival ink
and paper they will not last. You can burn them to CDs but there is
apparently also a life expectancy question with those as well. The cheaper
CDs may only last a few years. Kodak has made a gold/silver CD that they
rate as having a 100 year life. (One of our local computer stores told us
that Kodak is no longer going to be making these CDs, however.) Memorex has
a Memorex Black that has an expected life of 50 years. (Of course, in 50 or
100 years, there probably won't be any equipment that can even read our
ancient CDs.) (I recently read an article about CD longevity that suggested
burning a cheap CD and one of the Kodak CDs with some music files, leaving
both on your dashboard for a few days, label side down, and then playing both
of them. The article said there would be a noticeable degradation (or
complete loss) in the quality of the music on the cheap CD.)
We have been scanning a lot of old family photographs (saving them in
TIFF mode) and burning them to CDs to distribute to family members so that
everyone can have a copy of these pictures of which there is only one copy.
Hopefully, we will always have a master that we can make later copies onto
whatever the next storage medium technology will be (I guess DVD is the
likely next candidate).

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