48 of the most unusual cameras ever made

Camera know-how has come a good distance since the early days of the digital camera obscura.

Manufacturers and inventors have tried and examined a large number of completely different digital camera designs some quirky, some bonkers, some extremely profitable. Over the years, there have been lots of bizarre cameras in all styles and sizes.

From battle-ready machine gun cameras to sci-fi designs and weird storage mediums, we spherical up a variety of the strangest, rarest and most traditional cameras to be created.

Apple Quicktake 100
Hannes Grobe [CC BY-SA 4.0]by way of Wikimedia Commons

The Apple QuickTake was one of the first and final digital cameras developed by Apple.

This digital camera appeared extra like a projector than the traditional digital camera design and will take 32 photographs at a staggering 0.08 MP or eight snaps at 640×480. Originally launched in 1994, it was marketed by Apple till 1997 however didn’t catch on and was deserted in that 12 months.

Sony Digital Mavica
Morio [CC-BY-SA-3.0], by way of Wikimedia Commons

In 1981, Sony launched the Mavica as the world’s first digital nonetheless digital camera. It wasn’t a digital digital camera in the present understanding as its sensor produced an analogue video sign captured on Video Floppy discs. The captured photos might then be seen on a TV.

Things have come a good distance since then.

Leica DMR
Leica Camera AG

The Lecia DMR was the world’s first hybrid 35mm SLR digital camera with the choice for both digital or analogue pictures.

In typical Lecia vogue, it was priced at $6,000 and did not make a lot monetary sense however was seen by many as the holy grail of the transition between movie and digital pictures.

Leica S1

This Lecia digital camera was fascinating not just for its form and design, but additionally for the undeniable fact that it supplied lens mounts for Nikon, Contax, Canon FD, and Minolta lenses.

The unusual design meant it captured sq. photos utilizing 35mm lenses.

Rollei 35
Don DeBold [CC BY 2.0], by way of Wikimedia Commons

The Rollei 35 was a miniature viewfinder digital camera that was initially launched to the world in 1966 and was the smallest digital camera of the time.

Over the years that adopted round two million of these cameras had been manufactured and the design even continued on till 2015.


Lytro is a light-field digital camera that was initially developed in pocket-sized format and was fascinating not just for its unusual form however as a result of it was succesful of refocusing photos after being taken.

Later fashions would even be intriguing, with a hard and fast aperture it measured decision in mega rays as a substitute of megapixels and was succesful of focussing from 0 mm to infinity.

George Lawrence’s Mammoth Camera
George Raymond Lawrence, by way of Wikimedia Commons

In 1900, George Lawrence constructed the world’s largest digital camera in an effort to take a photograph of a prepare and seize all the carriages in a single single shot – a ground-breaking panoramic for the time.

George Lawrence made a reputation for himself with stunts like this and in addition took steps in aerial pictures innovation that included taking images from hot-air balloons and with camera-carrying kites. Another of his famed panoramic photos confirmed the aftermath of the 1906 earthquake with the ruins of San Francisco.

Light L16
2018 Light

The Light L16 was a quirkily designed digital camera that used 16 digital camera modules to seize a number of high-resolution snaps at various focal lengths, unexpectedly. The thought right here was to create a digital camera that labored as a pleasant center floor between a big DSLR for high quality and a compact digital camera for portability.

The captured photos had been fused collectively right into a 52-megapixel picture which might have its focus edited afterwards and supplied “distinctive low-light efficiency”. This one actually seems prefer it was impressed by a fly and stands out on our listing of unusual cameras.

Konishoruko (Konica) Rokuoh-Sha Type 89 Machine Gun Japanese WWII Camera

During WWII numerous battle cameras had been constructed by navy forces round the world for coaching functions.

One of these cameras was manufactured for the Japanese airforce by Konishoruko, a digital camera producer who would later go by the title Konica.

These kinds of cameras had been mounted to planes in place of actual machine weapons and helped with testing and coaching of pilots by confirming kills and evaluating their accuracy. When the pilot pulled the set off on his weapons, footage was taken of what he was aiming at and the captured movie might then be analysed after the aircraft landed.

If you want the look of one, it is presently accessible to buy from eBay.


This pinhole digital camera was made from injection moulded ABS, stainless-steel and completed with a non-slip coating that made it extraordinarily sturdy and succesful of withstanding each pure parts and tough dealing with.

In the period of the digital digital camera, the HARMAN TITAN pinhole digital camera is maintaining one of the oldest kinds of pictures alive with conventional movie seize via a pin-hole gadget.

Impossible I-1 Instant Film Camera
Polaroid Originals

This unusual-looking digital camera is pitched as one of the “most superior prompt cameras ever made”. In an period of easy smartphone pictures and digital cameras, this digital camera is designed to permit customers to experiment with their images and provides analogue fans the capability to snap prompt photographs with digital precision.

It’s an extremely unusual-looking digital camera in the digital period, however actually has lots of fascinating quirks too with Bluetooth connectivity, a smartphone app and extra permitting double exposures, gentle work and a large number of different particular options.

Lomography LomoKino 35mm Film Camera
Lomography 1994–2018

A contemporary tackle a retro digital camera, the Lomography LomoKino 35mm movie digital camera is a classically styled, hand-cranked 35mm motion-picture digital camera that permits customers to seize 144 film frames on a 36-exposure roll of movie.

No doubt a digital camera with a really area of interest market attraction, but additionally a unusual and splendidly unusual addition to our listing.

Minox DCC 14.0 Digital Camera

This is a miniaturised model of the traditional MINOX digital camera and is pitched as a real instance of first-class German engineering.

With precision mechanics and excessive consideration to element, this tiny digital camera is succesful of 14-megapixel snaps with a high quality that belies its dimension.

DxO ONE Digital Camera with Wi-Fi
2003 – 2018 DxO Labs

The DxO ONE digital digital camera is a bizarre one because it does not work as a digital camera in its personal proper, it wanted to plug into an Apple iPhone in an effort to work.

This smartphone add-on captures 20.2MP photos via a 32mm equal f/1.8 lens. With shutter speeds as much as 1/20,000 of a second, a max ISO sensitivity degree of 51,200 and a mass of different settings it delivers unimaginable images straight out of your telephone.

Avangard Optics Smiling Face Brooch Spy Camera
Avangard Optics

A pinhole digital camera constructed right into a smiley face brooch that works as a spy digital camera and could be pinned to clothes to seize 480p video at 30fps.

It’s additionally succesful of capturing nonetheless photos and recording photos on a microSD card. Certainly a bizarre digital camera, we doubt many spy cameras are this unsubtle.

Konica AiBORG
John Nuttall/Flickr.com

This unusual-looking digital camera by Konica was initially launched in 1991 and rapidly grew to become known as the Darth Vader digital camera as a result of its unusual styling options.

The Konica AiBORG is a 35mm point-and-shoot viewfinder digital camera with a big and extremely distinctive design. It’s notably one of the first cameras succesful of autofocus superzoom.

Lomography Konstruktor F Do-it-Yourself 35mm Film SLR Camera Kit
Lomography 1994–2018

The good reward for the pictures fanatic who already has all of it is a field with a DIY digital camera inside. The Konstruktor F permits individuals to construct their very own 35mm from the floor up with all the vital components.

The thought right here is to provide the consumer a brand new discovered appreciation for the intricate mechanics behind the analogue cameras and the way they work. Plus there is not any doubt one thing particular about utilizing a working DSLR digital camera you constructed your self.

Contax AX
Ignis [CC-BY-SA-3.0] by way of Wikimedia Commons

This podgy cumbersome wanting 35mm movie digital camera was launched by Kyocera in 1996 and boasted a novel autofocus system that labored with guide focus lenses.

This was unusual for the time and made it stand out as a bizarre digital camera design.

Olympus Ecru
Hiyotada [CC BY-SA 3.0], by way of Wikimedia Commons

This unusually designed Olympus digital camera was half restricted run of simply 20,000 models.

The Ecru was a restricted version digital camera which took its title from the French phrase for “unbleached” and was supposed to be a logo for “dwelling an intellectually enhanced life as pure as unbleached fabric.”

Zenit Photosniper
LordKalvan [CC BY-SA 3.0], by way of Wikimedia Commons

Another digital camera that appears like the battle cameras we featured earlier on this listing, the Zenit Photosniper one of a number of rifle-styled cameras that had been initially supposed for navy use or use for battlefield pictures.

These kinds of digital camera had been most famously utilized by Nikita (*48*) who was the chief of the Soviet Union from 1955 till 1964.

Fisher-Price PXL-2000

This Fisher-Price digital camera was generally known as the KiddieCorder and was a black-and-white camcorder which was launched in the Nineteen Eighties and used audio cassette tapes for its recordings.

Although hardly bleeding-edge digital camera tech, this little video digital camera was nonetheless extremely wanted at the time for being a incredible toy but additionally afterwards by various film-makers who love the low-fi aesthetic look.

Samuel Donvil [CC BY-SA 4.0)], by way of Wikimedia Commons

In the mid-Nineteen Fifties, SECAM developed this pen-shaped digital camera which appeared like a superbly sized spy digital camera. The Stylophot digital camera used double perforated 16mm movie and captured 10x10mm photos that had been hardly astounding high quality.

Nonetheless, it was actually a bizarre digital camera and a terrific addition to our listing.

Sakura Petal
Special Auction Services

In 1947, the Petal Optical Company of Japan create the PETAL, the smallest subminiature photographic digital camera in the world.

The Guinness Book of World Records holds this digital camera as “the smallest digital camera ever made” measuring at simply an inch in diameter. This tiny digital camera was succesful of taking six photographs on a chunk of minimize movie that may very well be changed in daylight however was troublesome to make use of.

Pentax Auto 110
Morvan [CC BY-SA 2.5], Via Wikimedia Commons

The Pentax-110 digital camera system claims to be the smallest interchangeable-lens SLR system ever created. It was so small that the digital camera itself would match neatly into the palm of the hand.

This digital camera system was succesful of working with a quantity of completely different interchangeable lenses and rapidly grew to become extraordinarily common amongst 110 movie cartridge fans.

Doryu 2-16

The Doryu 2-16 is one more instance of cameras created in the form of handguns and weapons. These pistol cameras had been developed in the Nineteen Fifties for police and surveillance job forces however solely round 600 had been produced.

Minolta 110 Zoom SLR
Bob Blaylock [CC BY-SA 3.0], by way of Wikimedia Commons

This oddly formed digital camera was the first SLR in the 110 movie format to be launched. This unusual form took place when Minolta took the flat form of the typical 110 pocket digital camera and added a bigger lens and prism hump to it.

It boasted a quantity of different options together with aperture-priority autoexposure, publicity compensation and allowed the use of movie speeds aside from the ISO 100 and 400 too.

Olympus AZ-4/Ricoh Mirai
E Magnuson [CC BY 2.0], by way of Flickr.com

In 1988 Ricoh launched this curious-looking bridge digital camera to market. It was co-created with Olympus and was one of the solely autofocus SLR cameras made by Ricoh.

This digital camera featured a design that made it look one thing like a cross between a video digital camera and a projector and was supposed to supply a futuristic really feel backed by spectacular specs. With a hard and fast 35 – 135mm zoom lens, an aperture of f/4.2 (vast) to f/5.6 (telephoto), shutter speeds of 32 sec – 1/2000 sec, TTL autofocus it was actually an fascinating digital camera for the time.

Casio Exilim TRYX / TR100
CASIO Europe GmbH

This bizarre digital camera from Casio featured a swivelling and rotatable body with a touch-screen show that allowed customers to seize photos from a spread of angle.

It was additionally a super-slim and compact digital camera that was simple to make use of and even simpler to take with you on the go.

Canon Photura

The Canon Photura was an oddly formed Canon digital camera that glided by a number of completely different names together with the “Epoca” in Europe and “Autoboy Jet” in Japan.

This digital camera was half of Canon’s Sure Shot digital camera vary and had a 35-105mm zoom lens with a strong built-in flash. This odd-looking digital camera seems extra like a torch than a digital camera, however is so funky it was chosen for show by the New York Museum of Modern Art.

Barbie Videogirl
Mattel Inc.

Video Girl Barbie was a point-of-view video digital camera aimed toward children. This little digital camera was constructed right into a Barbie Girl mannequin with the lens being half of her necklace.

An LCD viewfinder on her again allowed kids to see what they had been recording and Video Girl Barbie was succesful of recording upto 25 minutes of footage that might then be transferred to a PC. Certainly quirky, if nothing else.

Ricoh GXR System

The Ricoh GXR is an unusual addition to this listing as, the place commonplace cameras have both a hard and fast lens and sensor or interchangeable lenses, this digital camera takes interchangeable models, every holding a lens, sensor and picture processing engine. This allowed for a number of advantages, together with every unit having the ability to be optimised for particular photographic duties the place different cameras would all depend on the identical sensor even with completely different lenses.

The sealed models produced for this method additionally protected the sensor from mud, harm and contaminants. There is an added price of course, which could put many off the buy.

Seitz 6×17 Digital
Seitz Phototechnik

This digital camera is a digital camera that is not a digital camera. It’s truly a scanner that scans photos very slowly and must be mounted on a gradual floor as a result of the gradual scan occasions.

It additionally requires the use of accompanying pc gear and batteries to make it work which makes it fairly specialist. Nonetheless, the Seitz 6×17 Digital received individuals excited again in 2006 when it promised 160MP images for simply $40,000.

Petri Fotochrome
John Kratz [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], by way of Wikimedia Commons

The Petri Fotochrome was an unusual digital camera with a unusual design. This digital camera mirrored the captured picture onto the movie aircraft that ran parallel to the floor, therefore the cameras unusual design.

This design was a failure because it required the use of proprietary movie which made it troublesome and costly to make use of. The end result was a exceptional digital camera that was a whole dud and might nonetheless be purchased at this time in its unique packaging as a result of so many had been by no means used.

Pentax ‘Korejanai’ Ok-x
Ricoh Imaging.co., Ltd

This Pentax digital camera noticed a particularly restricted run with simply 100 models being created and offered. The Pentax ‘Korejanai’ Ok-x was colourfully crafted to match the Korejanai Robot Model.

The colors had been the solely factor that made it stand aside from the commonplace fashions with each the digital camera physique and lens being in any other case similar to straightforward Pentax DA-L cameras.

Ricoh LX-22 XOBBOX

This see-through digital camera is also referred to as the XOBBOX, to not be confused with Microsoft’s recreation console. It boasted a clear shell which allowed customers to see the inside workings of the digital camera.

Of course, the movie chamber itself wasn’t see-through because it wanted safety from pure gentle. Still a brilliantly unusual digital camera with a vibrant and quirky design.

Game Boy Camera
Evan-Amos, by way of Wikimedia Commons

The Game Boy Camera was launched as pocket digital camera in the late Nineteen Nineties and was suitable with all the Game Boy units on the market.

The digital camera might seize black & white digital photos utilizing the four-colour palette of the Game Boy system however was somewhat quirky and never one thing that was in excessive demand. The firm ceased manufacturing 4 years later.

Pentax Optio NB1000

This weird-looking digital camera labored with nano blocks and allowed customers to create their very own digital camera designs by attaching blocks to the entrance of the digital camera.

This digital camera was accessible in a spread of colors and is succesful of capturing 14MP photos with a 4x optical zoom and three” digital show. Certainly, a bizarre digital camera, brilliantly designed for the inventive individuals on the market.

SMaL Ultra-Pocket
SMaL Camera Technologies, Inc

The SMaL Ultra-Pocket is maybe greatest described by the blurb from the firm’s web site:

“The Ultra-Pocket is the good entry-level digital digital camera for people and households who need a real pocket digital camera with out sacrificing affordability and high quality. “When individuals see and use the Ultra-Pocket, it’s common for them to react with a ‘Wow!’ at the very least twice,” mentioned Keith Fife, Vice President, Engineering, SMaL Camera Technologies. “The first ‘wow’ is a response to the digital camera’s ultra-thin dimension – actually the dimension of a bank card and solely 0.2″ (6 mm) skinny. The second happens after they see how the Autobrite™ know-how clearly captures the darkish particulars of a scene whereas guaranteeing that the vivid areas by no means saturate.”

The Ultra-Pocket boasts sturdiness and a glossy silver contour. Its VGA decision (300,000+ pixels) is right for sending photos by way of e-mail or for posting on the net. The included 8 MB MultiMediaCard detachable reminiscence can maintain as much as roughly 40 photos. USB connectivity ensures quick downloading and connectivity with Windows. The digital camera suits simply in your pocket, goes just about in every single place you go, and provides easy point-and-click use. With the Ultra-Pocket, it’s by no means been extra handy to seize and share life’s photos.”

Certainly some fascinating boasts and a unusual little digital camera that is as skinny as it’s bonkers.

Kowa TD-1

This digital camera actually stands out from the crowd. It’s a super-telephoto zoom digital digital camera that gives a staggering focal size from 450 to 1350mm.

It has an SLR fashion and makes use of a distant management shutter to minimise digital camera shake which might in any other case be a major problem at such excessive zoom ranges.

Sanyo IDC-1000Z
rnc1omocha/Yahoo Japan Corporation

The Sanyo IDC-1000Z was a reasonably fascinating gadget when it was first launched in 2000.

This digital camera was actually unconventional utilizing Magneto-Optical discs to retailer photos. It solely took 1.5MP snaps with a 3 x zoom however actually included an fascinating design.


This spherical digital camera consists of 36 separate lenses encased in a protecting plastic shell. Each lens makes use of a 1/4″ sensor which permits for the seize of a 108MP 360-degree picture when all the photographs are mixed. Certainly staggering and positively bizarre.

YI Technology HALO
YI Technology

This bizarre and wonderful-looking factor is named the YI Technology HALO. A digital camera that sports activities 17 completely different digital camera modules designed to seize 360-degree views and every thing round it.

At the time of writing one of these beasts will set you again $17,000!

Gift Trenz Woodsum Pinhole Camera

What you are here’s a pinhole digital camera. Which in itself is pretty widespread, however they are not normally made of wooden like the Gift Trenz Woodsum Pinhole Camera.

This digital camera can also be a DIY, build-it-yourself 35mm digital camera that actually stands out from the crowd. Quirky and unusual.

Lytro Illum Light Field Digital Camera

Another Lytro digital camera makes it onto our listing. This one is sort of fashionable wanting however once more stays quirky. This digital camera has a hard and fast aperture and might focus from 0 mm to infinity.

Once once more the decision of its photographs is measured in megarays, not megapixels, which is pretty odd by itself.

Asanuma Acmel License-4

This awesomely retro-styled digital camera out of Japan and was designed to permit the snapping of 4 passport images at the identical time.

It additionally had a Polaroid backing which made it in a position to ship the images in very fast time.

Pigeon digital camera

Homing pigeons had been used extensively throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. When man started experimenting with aerial pictures utilizing kites, it made sense that ultimately individuals would flip to birds as one other means of snapping photographs.

In 1907, Julius Neubronner strapped a miniature timed-delayed digital camera to a pigeon with a harness and started producing genuine aerial images. A good distance from the drone pictures of at this time, however the begin.

Fairchild Ok-17
Royal Air Force official photographer, Saidman

Though it won’t be the strangest on this listing, it’s pretty unusual to see such huge cameras. This is the Fairchild Ok-17, an aerial survey digital camera that was used throughout WW2. There had been a number of huge variations of this digital camera that had been used for surveillance when put in in Allied planes they usually performed an necessary half of the warfare effort.

The smallest picture sensor

This is the OV6948, which in 2019 was chosen by Guinness World Record for having “The Smallest Commercially Available Image Sensor”. It was designed for medical use in endoscopes and different units however has a wide-range of different potential makes use of too.

This tiny little factor might seize 200 x 200 decision video at as much as 30 frames per second and had an distinctive low-light sensitivity of 1000 mV/lux-sec.


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