Earlier this week, Sunny and I were grocery shopping at our local Aldi when we saw they had a special offer. A 'Traveller DC-12' 12 megapixel camera for $65, reduced to $50.
Well, after my $850 dollar camera was stolen and destroyed and then the $250 replacement camera was stolen by the same person (Sunny's POS son), we really needed a new camera. One of the things about moving to a whole new country is you want to take a lot of pictures of the one you're currently living in.
Now, on paper, the DC-12 is actually really good value for money. For $65 retail you get the camera, batteries (unfortunately it takes two AA's instead of a rechargeable battery pack) a 2 gigabyte SD card and a carrying case.
The camera has all the features you'd expect, plus a few you wouldn't for the price such as face and smile detection.
Now, most of my camera experience has been of high-end or at least middle-ground cameras. If I'm completely honest, after taking the DC-12 out of the box, my first impression was that it was a cheap, plastic piece of shit. It felt too light, flimsy and even the buttons are plastic.
However, it starts quickly and while the actual pictures aren't great quality, but they're not too terribly bad either. The 'scene' settings are a bit of a waste of time though. I took one image using a setting that supposedly 'captures the natural green tones of forest scenes'…and ended up with something that would only look natural if you'd taken a lot of acid beforehand.
Basically, I wouldn't recommend the DC-12 as a main camera, but after playing with it for a while, it struck me that it would make a good backup camera. A camera to take to the beach or on a night out without having to worry too much about it getting broken or stolen.
Unfortunately, I still can't recommend it. There are much better cameras for just a little more money. For around the same price you can get a Kodak C180, and while that's only a 10MP camera instead of a 12MP, the images are much better thanks to a higher quality CCD and lens…and for about twenty bucks more you can get a Nikon Coolpix L20 which is just an all-round better camera.
If, like me, you can snag a Traveller DC-12 below list price for forty or fifty dollars, it's worth a buy…but for the list price of $65, it's just not worth it.