The Small Camera Syndrome

This is a piece I wrote some time ago, but with the change in readership I thought I would publish it again. Apologies to those who have read it before.

'Reprinted by kind permission of:-

The University of Worcestershire, Department of Irrelevant Yet Lucrative Studies.

Excerpts from the Paper "Illnesses associated with Photography" by Justin Cash and R.U.Serious, Senior Lecturers in Psychosomatic Media Disorders ©2009

S.C.S or Small Camera Syndrome is an obsession with small cameras. Sufferers from this condition develop an uncontrollable desire to sell their cumbersome, oversized and overcomplicated DSLR's (invariably black) and replace them with ever smaller and lighter alternatives. Dr. Hans Full (Ph.D, C.A, I.Q) of Solms University identified this pattern of behaviour in the 1930's. He saw it as an irrational desire to enjoy photography, without the need to carry large quantities of equipment in ever expanding camera bags.

Many of those afflicted with the disease group together in small, semi-religious sects on the internet. Long-term sufferers promote therapeutic alternatives via a network of self-help organisations such as Rangefinders Anonymous and Photographes Sans Douleur arrière.

Many have tried to explain this. Dr. M. Oron of the MCS (Macho Camera Society) in his paper MInes bigger than yours (2009) said"While the disease is understandable for women and children, it is particularly disturbing for men. They seem to loose their masculinity by rejecting the norms of photographic society and in seeking to return to a simpler, less complicated way of taking pictures, put themselves into conflict with their peers."

The I.I.G.M.K.I.B (If its got more knobs its better) group, have taken an aggressive stance towards those who state that S.C.S is not in fact an illness, but an enlightened way of dealing with the complex issues of camera kit. In their recent publication, Flak jackets, telephotos and big lenses: More fun than a gun! They have aroused controversy by promoting the view that sufferers of S.C.S are actually a subversive organisation seeking to erode the long established traditions of photographic equipment purchasing. Their car bumper stickers proclaiming "Stand back! I've got a 300MM f2.8 and I'm going to use it!" have given rise to protest demonstrations in many towns and cities.

P. Sonic and Sam Sung authors of Pictures from my Pocket and Small is Special have taken the line that S.C.S is actually a healthy and desirable development. "In seeking to distance themselves from the ontological zeitgeist of the DSLR proliferation of recent years, so called S.C.S sufferers are merely responding to the negative discombobulation and persnicketiness (sic) of self-describing real photographers and offer a quasi-theological solution to this dilemma based on a reaction to the tautological imperatives promoted by those who in their struggle for consumerist producerism domination, merely encourage a guerilla type reverse proportionality response to the problem. In opposition to those who erroneously justify their error by misquoting the works ofMarshall Mcluhan, which, as should be obvious, is an absurdly inappropriate understanding of this argument, we assert that SCS, far from being an illness, is a mature and innovative response to the non-ethical yet persuasive dominant mores prevalent in todays aquisition led society ."

The N.C.F.M.A.I.S (National Centre for meaningless and irrelevant statistics) have identified S.C.S as being on the increase. From a small but consistent population of sufferers, prior to 2009, the occurrence of the syndrome has risen dramatically in the last two years. Many see this as a direct consequence of easy to obtain products flooding in from manufacturers in the far east. Despite the efforts of organisations such as B.C.R International (Big Cameras Rule) and P.W.O.C.A.N.A.T.O.R.P (People who own Canons or Nikons are the only real photographers) to point out the dangers of these imports, including the notorious pink hybrid, more and more photographers are becoming addicted to these products.


1. Dr. Hans Full (1932-02-01) Small Camera Syndrome

2. Dr. M. Oron (2009-11-07). Mines bigger than yours

3. I.I.G.M.K.I.B group (2009-11-16). Flak Jackets and Telephotos. Big lenses: More fun than a Gun!

4. P. Sonic and Sam Sung (2009-08-08) Pictures from my Pocket. Small is Special.

5. N.C.F.M.A.I.S (2009-12-10). Analysis of Diseases related to Camera Purchasing. 2008-2009.

6. P.W.O.C.A.N.A.T.O.R.P (2009-11-21). Small Cameras Suck.'


As a full-time photographer I make my living from selling images on Stock Photography sites. Writing this blog and doing the comparison tests takes time away from that and earns me very little. If you find what you read here of interest, then you can help me to fund the gear I buy to review, by clicking on the adsense banners, donating and / or buying your gear from the affiliate links. You don't pay any extra, I get a small commission. 

Previously I was posting on the free, Blogger platform, but this site, with it's greatly increased functionality, costs me money and the more it expands, the more it will cost.  If I can get THE SOUNDIMAGEPLUS BLOG economically viable, then I will be able to review a lot more gear and extend and expand those reviews. Running a blog these days that competes with the best out there requires a lot of time and effort and is clsoe to a full-time job. This means that I'm neglecting other work to put that time in. It is my intention to turn this into a much more comprehensive review and user experience site and I can only do that if I can get it to generate more income. 

This site, like much of the internet, has free content and like much of the internet is funded by advertising and donations. I realise that not everybody likes advertising, but without it many of our favourite sites would have to resort to charging for what they do. Google, Facebook and all the other social networks sites remain free because of that advertising. I try to make the ads as unobtrusive as possible and I certainly won't be installing any of those annoying 'flickering' or video boxes. 

There is an interesting article on the BBC website HERE, which deals with many of the issues above.

Many Thanks

David Taylor-Hughes