This was the very first digital camera I ever purchased. It was the Olympus Camedia C-2500L that featured a 2.5 megapixel progressive scan CCD sensor. I purchased this camera because my uncle in Taiwan had one of these and he swore up and down that it was the best and most advanced camera at the time. It was a really high end camera that took great photos. It featured 3x optical zoom (36mm-110mm equivalent), a fast f/2.8-3.9 aperture, and could only use ISO 100, 200, and 400.
Looking back at the Olympus CAmidea C-2500L, you can a lot of design elements that are still used today. I mean it still has that basic DSLR-like shape that mane super-zoom cameras still use with the nice beefy grip and popup flash. It even had an optical viewfinder which sadly, many cameras of this type no longer offer a viewfinder. Even though this camera had a popup flash, it still included a hot shoe for using external flashes. Notice how tiny rear LCD screens used to be. It was a 1.8 inch, 122,000 pixel TFT color LCD display that was only used for playback. You had to use the viewfinder to compose your shots.
I remember too that you had to connect the camera to a serial port in order to pull pictures off an old Compact Flash card (Type-1) or those massive SmartMedia cards.
From this angle, you can see how beefy that hand grip was. This was mainly due to the fact too that this is where the batteries were located. I say “batteries” because it actually used AA batteries. It came with it’s own rechargeable batteries which in my opinion, were pretty bad compared to batteries of today. I could literally only take less than 75 shots before having to recharge again. It could also be possible that the C-2500L just sucked down a lot of juice. You can also see that the camera included a top screen to display vital shooting info as well as how huge this camera really was.
I used this camera quite a bit back then, I believe back in the early 2000’s and it really did take some good photos for its time. It was just not very travel friendly and was relegated to office use for my parent’s company. I still own the camera as well as the original box, all the cables, and the original batteries and charger for it. I’m anal like that.