I have recently bought the Boots disposable camera and this is my review.
I always buy one of the Boots disposable cameras at Christmas time cos I like to take a few snaps of the family on Christmas day. I have bought them before for taking away to Spain with me to. There is a special offer on in Boots at the moment where some of the disposable cameras on sale are on a buy one get one free offer which I think is very good cos it makes the cameras work out cheaper when you are getting one free. The Boots disposable cameras cost £6.00 but of course I got one free so it really worked out at costing £3.00 each.
The full name of the Boots disposable camera is Boots Essentials Single Use Camera and it is in a bright purple packet. The camera has changed recently and it used to be a black colour but now it is black and silver with a purple design on it.
The camera has 27 exposures which means you can take 27 photographs with it but I find sometimes you can get one or two extra on the film. The Boots camera has a flash on it to so you can use it indoors as well as outdoors.
The flash is on the front of the camera and is a black plastic circle button which you need to flip up so it is open and then a red light comes on to tell you that the flash is on. You do not really need the flash if you are using the camera during the daytime outside as you will probably have enough light to take a good picture but for indoor pictures you should use it.
There is a winder button on the back of the camera which you need to wind on after you have taken a picture so the camera film can wind itself on. You do this every time you take a picture and you need to wind it two or three times then it will not wind any more and you know you are ready to take your next picture. You can see how many pictures are left on your spool as there is a number shown in a little plastic window on the top of the camera. The number moves every time you have taken a picture. Once you have used up all of the pictures you need to use the winder button to wind back all of the film in your camera so you can get your pictures developed. The number then has to go back to 0 then your camera is finished being wound back.
The window to look through and focus on your picture is a good size and sometimes with disposable or throw away cameras it is a bit small and it makes it difficult to see what you are taking a picture of. With the Boots camera it was a good enough size to be able to judge what I wanted to photograph. The black button on the camera lets you take your pictures and you only need to press it for the picture to be taken which is easy to do.
When my camera was finished and I got my pictures back I was pleased with them and have used the Boots cameras a few times and always think the photographs are good enough quality. Sometimes there are good deals on in Boots and they give you a discount for getting your photographs developed in there store after you have bought your disposable camera from there. There is usually one or two pictures that are a bit fuzzy but I think it is because I move the camera too quickly once I have pressed the button and it is not a fault of the camera working.
I would suggest giving the Boots disposable camera a try out and think they are good quality and they are not to dear either. I have stocked up on two of the Boots cameras for Christmas coming up and I took my Boots advantage card to the cash desk when I was paying and so I got the Boots points on my card which soon add up. I thought it was good to stock up on the cameras just now whilst they are doing the buy one get one free offer and so I got two cameras for the price of one.
Quite a few months ago, some friends of ours were getting married and wanted to try and create some special memories of the day. When we discussed with them, we agreed that with most of the other weddings and functions that we had all been to, all the photos seemed to be 'staged' with people posing and in nice little groups etc, and wouldn't it be great to try and capture some of candid moments that many would just simply delete from their digital cameras. And so hatched the plan to buy a dozen of these Boots Disposable Cameras.
Now in this modern digital age, I suppose the idea of having a film based camera that you take to have developed is a novel concept, but there was method in the madness with this decision, which I will come on to later.
So what are these cameras? Well, for £6.00 you get a basic box camera that comes in a nice little cardboard box. Inside the box, the camera is sealed in a foil wrapper. If you are looking for it in Boots, it is sold as a single use camera, meaning that you take the photo shots until it is full, and then take the whole camera to the printers to have the film developed. There are other single use cameras that come a little more expensive than this, but this is the basic starter model at £6.00. Of note, Boots have recently got an offer on where you get 2 for the price of 1, bringing the cost down to £3.00 per camera.
The camera itself is very basic, providing a flash facility and enough film for 27 exposures that can be taken inside or out. The flash itself has a 3m range on it which means it is ideal for taking those candid group shots that I mentioned earlier.
The idea for the wedding was to leave a dozen of these scattered around the tables for the reception and to just ask people to take any shots that they saw fit. The happy couple would then collect up the cameras, have them developed and enjoy the happy candid snaps. At the event I did manage to get hold of one to try it out and I suppose for the money, it is a nice little camera that sits comfortably in your hand. To start with you simply wind the thumb wheel forward until it clicks to a stop, meaning that the first frame in the film is ready to be used. Look through the little view finder to compose your shot and then press the shutter button on the top until it clicks, meaning that the photo has been taken. If you need to use the flash, there is a small button on the front of the camera which should be pressed to charge the flash up. When ready, a little red light glows indicating that the flash has been charged and is ready to use. Now when you press the shutter button, the flash will also fire. When you want to take your next shot, you just wind the thumb wheel forward again until it clicks to a stop, and the camera is now primed for your next photo.
It is a slightly different mindset using these disposable cameras when compared to a digital camera. With my digital Nikon, I would normally just blast away taking loads of shots, and then select the ones I want to keep later on. But with this disposable camera only having 27 exposures, you have to be a little more selective in what photos you take, because once the shot is taken, you can't go back to check it or delete it, and you only see the end result once you've had the film developed.
Getting the film finally developed is just a case of taking the whole camera to the developers. Boots provide this service, and the offer they have on at the moment with these cameras also includes a 15% discount voucher on developing costs, but I suppose you can shop around because prices for developing will vary. Obviously being a disposable camera means that the camera will be disposed of once the film has been developed, so don't be too disappointed if you don't get it back.
Quality wise when I saw the pictures, they were actually very good. The colours were vibrant and bright, and the sharpness and quality were somewhat better than I was expecting from a cheap disposable camera. Obviously, the photos come back as a hard copy print and not in a digital format, but it does make them ideal for putting in a photo album. In the case of the wedding, most of the shots seemed to be taken by children, since most adults had bought their own cameras leaving the disposable cameras for the kids to use, and they produced all sorts of hilarious sneaky photos of the event that would have ordinarily been forgotten, but which are now very much treasured.
In summary. Whilst this camera is very cheap and basic, it does take a very decent picture that would easily rival the quality from many digital cameras. It is very simple to operate and would be ideal if you needed a camera for a day out somewhere and didn't want to take a big SLR along. Hence, a 5* recommendation.
Also on Ciao under Randal1.
I had the opportunity to attend a rather upmarket art exhibition recently, it was a very smart event and I dithered for an awfully long time as to whether I should take my camera. My main concern was that I attended the exact same event nine years ago and was made to leave my expensive digital camera at the front desk as the art was not to be photographed, there were a hairy few minutes when we thought it had been lost so I was loathe to take along my even more expensive current camera this time around. It was my daughter who suggested buying a disposable camera, reasoning that it wouldn't matter so much if I had to entrust it to the not terribly safe keeping of the gallery.
I opted for a Boots Essentials camera, quite simply because they were on buy one get one free together with other holiday items in my local store. It is a smart looking camera with flash, an added advantage being that I also received a voucher entitling me to 15% off the cost of developing the photographs.
The camera is very easy to use; the flash is activated by holding in a rather awkwardly placed button, when it is ready simply frame and capture your photograph. The winder works smoothly and feels tightly fitted into the camera, the same is true of the capture button which depresses with a reassuring click and has a robust feel to ensure it won't accidentally be pressed while in a pocket or bag. The plastic body of the camera is sturdy and has a shape that is comfortable to hold, while being chunky enough to help keep itself stable while I am trying to frame my shot.
There are 27 exposures on the film and I didn't have a problem with over winding at the end, this meant no double exposures which used to be a problem with the older generation of disposable cameras.
It turned out that I was able to take my camera in this time around and I took some beautiful photographs of the artwork and artists. Upon getting them developed I was astounded by the quality of them; the colours are all true and the images are almost as sharp as the photographs I take on my digital camera! The flash is effective and doesn't cause the colours to become washed out, there was also a distinct lack of red eye in my photographs which again is a definite improvement from the disposable cameras I used a number of years ago.
I paid £6 for this disposable camera and am thrilled with my purchase, of course there are developing costs on top of this but if you are prepared to shop around you will more than likely find a good deal on that. Another, unexpected, pleasure of using this camera is that I am very happy to have hard copies of my photographs for the first time in several years - I adore my digital camera but it's such a shame that photographs are left on the hard drive of my laptop rather than being printed out for everyone to handle and enjoy.
Whilst out we decided to hop on a train as the weather was nice, however, we had not intended on going anywhere special, and as such we hadn't packed anything for the day. I realised that we had not bought the camera with us, which was a bit disappointing, as I always like to take pictures to capture special moments of my son's life. I thought I would have a look in Boots to see what disposable camera's they had on offer. I can't say that I am familiar with disposable cameras, and have only used them on rare occasions.
I was pleased to see a few different disposable cameras available, we decided that they would probably all produce similar results, so we opted for the Boots own brand. The Boots single use disposable camera is price at a reasonable £5.99, and is currently on buy-one-get-one free, offering exceptional value for money. I did wonder what they would be like, as they were inexpensive. I expected the picture quality to be poor, I wasn't expecting much at all, however, it was still nice to able to take snaps throughout the day.
The camera comes sealed in a foil wrapper that is easy to remove and discard. It has an expiry date of 2 years, which is also noted on the base of the camera itself. It is also advised to get the pictures developed promptly. The camera should be kept out of direct sunlight, away from heat sources, and moisture. As it is only a disposable camera, it has no special features, other than a flash, which is easy to operate by the flick of a button that is located on the front of the camera. A red light indicates when the flash is activated. There are some simple usage instructions printed on the back of the camera.
The camera is lightweight, and fits comfortably in the palm of the hand. The camera has 27 exposures, and is easy to operate. Simply wind the advance wheel until it clicks and is unable to move any further. The remaining exposures are clearly displayed at the top of the camera in the counter window, which makes it easy to see how many more pictures can be taken. The window viewer is a little difficult to adjust to after being used to using a digital camera. I felt unsure if I was aiming the camera accurately at what I wished to capture.
Once ready to take a picture, gently press the shutter button. After taking a picture, you can confidently place the camera into a pocket and not worry about accidently taking pictures, as it needs to be wound on to be able to take the next picture. It is advised to stand between 1 to 3 metres away from what you are photographing. Once the film is finished, the advanced wheel needs to be wound until it displays zero. Once the camera is finished, it can be taken to Boots to be developed; there is a further charge for this. The camera will be recycled by Boots, and you will be left with your pictures.
We had a fun day in the sun, and were able to snap away taking pictures throughout the day. With only 27 exposures you need to be a bit selective over what you want to photograph, as it will soon run out. This means that taking extra pictures of the same subject may not be wise, as this will limit the amount of different pictures taken. We happily snapped away taking pictures throughout the day. The camera is convenient and easy to use, making it simple to capture moments throughout the day. We took pictures indoors and outdoors, and by the end of the day before heading back to the train we still had a few exposures left.
I think my partner was in the same mindset as I, as he happily snapped away taking pictures of random things. I think he was just eager to use up the camera to get it developed to see what the quality was like. By the time we reached our destination, we headed to _Boots_ to drop the camera in for developing. We chose to get standard photos and a CD of the pictures, too. We only had to wait a couple of days before we could see the pictures. The photo processing for standard prints and the CD cost me £6.99, and the CD was an extra £2 but would provide me with the opportunity to upload the photos on to the computer and allow me to keep a back up of them.
As mentioned earlier, I really wasn't expecting much, however, I was pleasantly surprised. The photo quality far exceeded my expectations, the prints were clear, and the colours were vivid. The images were accurately captured, and each photo was of a good quality. I was amazed at the quality of the prints, and how well the pictures turned out. There were only a couple of pictures that were a little distorted where the flash was used, but overall every picture was of a good standard, perfectly capturing the day.
I would happily use the Boots disposable camera's again when needs be. I have a couple more which I purchased to keep for times where I don't feel like taking my digital camera out. I think these are great for days out when there is a slight worry of losing or damaging a digital camera. They are also handy to buy in times where you may have forgotten the camera, as Boots stores can be located in most towns. They would also be handy for children to take on school trips, or days out. For the price these offer great value for money, and provide great quality prints. Never miss special moments in life, and enjoy taking pictures even with a disposable.
(Picture example on ciao)
Having bought a variety of Boots Single Use Disposable Cameras I have to say that I have been surprised by the quality of some of the photographs that they have produced at times. Whilst many of the photos that were developed were of an average quality, there have been occasions were a few gems have been produced that may not have otherwise surfaced. I feel that for that alone we have been reasonably pleased with the over all results of these types of cameras.
Having tried the Boots Essentials 27 exposure camera most recently thats the one that will be the basis of this review. We bought 2 of these when on a BOGOF deal in store which made them £5.99 for 2, or just under £3 each. This to me works out rather well for a camera that you can to some extent use and abuse and then send in to the in store photo counter at Boots to get developed. These single use cameras are also perfect for giving to children to take on school trips and similar days out, or for any situation where you yourself want to take photos and wouldn't want to risk an expensive camera.
The normal price for the Boost Essentials disposables is £5.99 each so at the time of buying these we had almost saved the cost of developing the photos with the BOGOF deal at the time of purchase. This was further enhanced by the fact that any Boots loyalty card holder is awarded 100 points on their card when using the in store developing service to develop their pics. So with 2 BOGOF cameras and an immediate £5.99 saving, we were able to also gain the equivalent of £2 back to spend in store once we had developed our pics.
The actual cameras we picked came simply yet effectively packed in purple plastic foil packs. This was very handy as it not only protected the cameras until we needed them, but also made them waterproof prior to use. This meant we didn't have to worry what we packed them next to and they could be put into a bag containing toiletries and other travel essentials without worry.
The plastic foil packs are easy enough to break into when needed and when opened they reveal a nice little black plastic single use camera. The cameras were also covered with a light card surround for further protection when awaiting use in their packs. The cameras are neat and compact to look at and also extremely light to the touch. I have to admit I did find their lightness a little odd at first, but this does in a way make them more easily carried on your person or in a bag when out and about.
Once you get over the fact that this is a film based camera rather than the digital type that many of us have become accustomed to over the last few years, you can appreciate that as a simple 1 use camera, the product has been nicely put together and looks and feels of a decent enough quality. The cameras we had, all had a built in flash which seemed effective enough in certain dull light conditions. Although I have to admit they didn't have the brightest flash in the world. However sometimes you don't want or need a super bright flash so this was fine. I also reminded myself that with a single use camera, having any form of flash is a bonus in itself.
The feel of the cameras is comfortable in terms of grip with a nice curved, textured and dotted section on the front side of the camera where your snapping hand sits. This gave a good grip to the camera and made for a steadier feel when snapping pics. The snap happy photo button is placed on top of the camera and only needs a gentle touch to activate it and take a photo. The opposite side of the camera is indented slightly, which again suits the way you tend to hold a camera to take a photo.
This side when used with the left hand also has a very well placed push button at the front, for you to hold in with your index finger when you want to take a photo and use the flash at the same time. I found that you only had to hold this button in for a matter of a second or two for the flash to be ready to use, as the simple red flash ready indicator light was already lighting up to tell me it was ready.
With these Boots disposable cameras being 35mm film based rather than digital they do require the film to be moved on to the next frame to allow for you to take a photo. This is a very simple thing to do as you just need to turn the textured horizontal dial at the back of the camera with the thumb of your right hand until it clicks. Once the click has been heard you are ready to shoot, aim and fire! Well when I say that I mean you can take 1 photo before having to wind the film on again.
This can be a pain at times as you are not immediately able to take another photo (there is no auto wind) and this can mean you might miss that perfect shoot that you may have been able to get when shooting with an automatic wind on camera. I would think that it does lose you at least 5 to 6 seconds as it takes a little time to wind on the film and then reposition yourself behind the viewer again. Because of this I wouldn't recommend this camera for situations where you may want to snap away in quick succession.
With each camera having the capability to take up to 27 photos, you do need to be able to keep an eye on how many exposures you have left. This is catered for with these cameras, as there is a small clear counter window set into the top of the camera. Every time the film is wound on the counter moves forwards to reflect this (in theory). We did find that sometimes this could be a bit hit and miss towards the end of a film, with the film having moved on and the accompanying click being heard, yet the counter remaining as it was.
This was something that caused us to worry that we would end up with an array of 2 to 3 double exposure photos, where 2 pics had been merged into one, which has happened with some photos we have taken in the past. I am happy to say that having viewed all of the photos that were developed, thankfully we didn't end up with anything like that at all. In fact the number of photos that were eventually developed and of a reasonable quality was at least 23 to 24 per film. When you consider the type of camera used to take the photos, I don't think thats a bad ratio at all.
One thing you cannot do with this type of camera is have a look at what you have snapped and decide which pics to keep and which to discard. In a way whilst many people may find that an inconvenience, we did find this rather exciting. As once we got our photos developed we had the joy of setting eyes on our photos for the first time in the flesh, without having picked those shots where we thought things came out looking their best.
This element of surprise at what was actually developed was great and every now and then we were very pleased with a few photos that we didn't think would turn out all that well, which in reality were very good. Having allowed these single use cameras to be used on school trips and similar days out by the children, we have had mixed results, but have always had something to show for the effort put into taking the photos. Not only was this great for them, but it was also nice for us to see a childs perspective, without worrying about damaging an expensive camera in the process.
To give the Boots disposable cameras a rating I feel they ought to get 4 stars. The rating reflects not just the over all quality of the finished product or photo, which when rated as a stand alone thing would perhaps get a lower 3 star rate. The higher rating has to encompass the fact that these cameras are so versatile and can be used in situations were you wouldn't want to use a more expensive piece of kit, or perhaps are unable to do so.
The rating also reflects that fact that these simple single use cameras are great for children to get involved with too. This can give a child a great feeling of creativity and independence that would not be achievable otherwise. The resulting photos can be a lasting reminder of wonderful days out full of memories for children to keep in scrap books etc. For that end alone these cameras deserve a look, but they can also return some surprisingly good pics at times, that you perhaps might not get with another form of camera, even though you do end up with a few rougher quality pics in the process.
When got our dog last year we knew we wanted photos to keep as memories for years. Dogs are the perfect companion but sadly do not live forever and the early months/years are always full of mischief.
We knew a camera could be easily destroyed on walks, dog shows, on the beach etc so purchased a few disposable Cameras from Boots. We took many photos around the house, down the park, on the beach and many other places. The flash was easy to use and as far as cameras go it was a very user-friendly camera. We managed to go through 4 cameras each with 29 photos on. We got these developed at Boots but were so sad to see that the photos were blurred, over exposed and very dark. Pictures taken on a sunny day appeared as if it were night and the quality was very grainy. I'd always used disposable cameras with brilliant results (ok so not as good as the average digital camera but not bad for the money!)
We had wasted money on the prints, the camera and obviously missed out on some great opportunities and lovely memories. If you really want to capture a moment you cant beat your average digital camera.