Tuesday, 20 December 2016

The UCA-5 Comes Back From The Dead

Well, don't I feel a bit silly. A while back my Samsung UCA-5 starting playing up. It developed a fault in which it would turn on but freeze after a few seconds. It happened after I left the camera in a coat pocket, and throughout the day the coat was being moved around quite a bit. I presumed that the camera had been been knocked, and as a result has developed a permanent fault that would not be worth spending the money on to get fixed. I mean, it's only a cheap camera and I've had so many years of use out of it, that I thought it was finally time to upgrade. So I did.

I bought a Samsung WB500 which came with a 2GB SD card. The SD card was only class 2, so I bought a much faster 8GB class 10 card, and the difference in write speed was definitely noticeable. But then I was thinking.. My Samsung UCA-5 still uses the same 64mb MMC+ Plus that it came with all those years ago when I first bought it. I know, lol. 64mb is nothing in this day and age, and I should have upgraded it a long time ago. But I just never needed to.

Anyway, now that I had the spare 2GB card from the new camera at my disposal I thought I would try it in the UCA-5 to see if it was compatible. I put it in, turned the camera on and it is compatible. And more importantly, and the reason for this post, since I've put the new SD card in the fault has completely disappeared! To my surprise, the camera now works perfectly again. So maybe the card got knocked / shocked and developed an error.

I never for one second thought that a fault with a memory card could make the camera crash like that. The camera would come on for a few seconds and then the screen would crash and go all fuzzy. Bad cluster on the memory card perhaps. I would have thought if the issue was a card fault the camera would have just thrown up a "card error" or something similar, not just totally stop working. I think this is very strange. But more experienced users might have encountered this problem on more than one occasion.

After comparing the two cameras over the duration of a few weeks, the WB500 has many more features and modes, but the UCA-5 beats it hands-down in auto mode by being able to capture really good images without too much effort. The WB500 is much more hit and miss when it comes to auto mode. Furthermore, the image sharpness from the UCA-5's SHD lens just has more clarity than than the WB500. Even though it's only 5mp and the WB500 is 10.2mp. However, video recording is much better on the WB500, and it has the ability to zoom while filming, a feature the UCA-5 does not have.

In the future, if I don't get a Bridge camera or an entry level DSLR, and want to stick with another small Samsung, I will definitely buy one that has an SHD lens. They seem more sharper and just better overall. I'm blown away by how long this camera has lasted me. It is one of the most reliable electronic items I have ever owned. First, I've owned it for over 10 years. And second, I thought it was dead twice. Once it was knocked off a window sill with considerable force (2 - 3 foot drop) by a cat. After that it was faulty for a while, but somehow managed to fix itself. And this time, just when I thought it was definitely dead, it turned out to be the memory card with the problem. What a great camera this has turned out to be. I've had my moneys worth many times over. But yet again, it's still going strong.