The Apple QuickTake (codenamed Venus, Mars, Neptune) was one of the first consumer digital camera lines. It was launched in 1994 by Apple Computer and was marketed for three years before being discontinued in 1997. Three models of the product were built including the 100 and 150, both built by Kodak; and the 200, built by Fujifilm. The QuickTake cameras had a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels maximum (0.3 Mpx). The 100 and 200 models are only officially compatible with the Apple Macintosh, while the 150 model is compatible with both the Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows. Because the QuickTake 200 is almost identical to the Fuji DS-7 or to Samsung's Kenox SSC-350N, Fuji's software for that camera can be used to gain Windows compatibility for the QuickTake 200. Some other software replacements also exist.
In 1992, Apple Computer started marketing plans for a digital camera called QuickTake, codenamed Venus. At the time over $12 billion was spent annually in the United States on photography. Apple searched for a company to design and manufacture their QuickTake digital Camera line. It should be noted as fact, that Kodak had already been selling their own self-branded version of this camera, made in Japan by Chinon Industries, for over a year.
The QuickTake 100 was released in 1994 as an easy-to-use digital camera that connected to any Macintosh computer by way of an Apple serial cable. The camera was capable of storing eight photos at 640x480 resolution, 32 photos at 320x240 resolution, or a mixture of both sizes. All photos were at 24-bit color. The camera had a built-in flash, but no focus or zoom controls. The QuickTake 150 kit included a separate close-up lens that allowed focusing at approximately 30 cm. Other than downloading the photos to a computer, there was no way to preview them on the camera, nor was there any way to delete individual photos from the camera (though there was a recessed 'trash' button which would delete the entire contents of the camera). It was one of the first digital cameras that were targeted to consumers to be released.
Apple released a connection kit for Microsoft Windows with the QuickTake 150 in 1995. The last QuickTake model was the Fujifilm-built QuickTake 200, released in 1996. The 200 added focus and aperture controls, as well as the ability to store images on removable SmartMedia flashRAM cards.
The various QuickTake models didn't sell very well, as other companies such as Kodak (already in the market before Apple), Fujifilm, Canon, and Nikon entered the digital market with brands that consumers associated with photography. They were discontinued in 1997 shortly after Steve Jobs came back to Apple. In an attempt to streamline Apple's operations, Jobs discontinued many non-computer products, including the Newton line of products, the LaserWriter printer line, and the QuickTake cameras. The Apple QuickTake camera has since become a collectors item for Apple enthusiasts.
|Resolution||640x480 pixels||640x480 pixels||640x480 pixels|
|Image Format||PICT, QuickTake||QuickTake from camera only (conversion to TIFF, BMP, PCX, JPEG in computer)||TIFF, BMP, PCX, JPEG, QuickTake|
|Lens||8 mm||8 mm||8 mm|
|Memory||1MB Flash EPROM||1MB Flash EPROM||2 or 4MB 5V SmartMedia card|
|Shutter Speed||1/30 to 1/175 of a second||1/30 to 1/175 of a second||1/4 to 1/5000 of a second|
|Connection||RS-232C||RS-422, RS-232C||RS-232C , NTSC Video I/O|
|Introduced||16 February 1994||May 1995||17 February 1997|
|Introductory Price||$749 US||$700 US||$600 US|
The QuickTake 200 can be used with card-readers that can read 5V media cards. For users with an Apple Macintosh running System 7 up to Mac OS 9 with a serial port, the QuickTake 200 can be plugged directly into the computer using the Apple QuickTake camera software. The QuickTake 100 and 150 store images internally, not on cards, so they must be used with an Apple serial cable and the QuickTake driver software. The QuickTake cameras cannot be directly connected to a Macintosh running Mac OS X, both because these machines do not support the old Apple Serial protocol, and because QuickTake cameras used a unique codec for compression and decompression which has not been ported to modern versions of QuickTime.