Jenoptik JD11 Entrance (1998)

Jenoptik's entry in the digital camera market. Jenoptik was well known for optics, lenses and later laser technology and robotics. Why they chose this OEM junk to enter the market is unknown. They never manufactured a consumer digital camera themselves but used only OEM models until the company fell apart in early 2000. Since then there have been numerous changes in management and division structures. 

So the famous Minton clone is actually the first digital camera Jenoptik marketed. Since there is no valid data, one can only assume it was marketed in late 1998. There was a small review of the camera in a german computer magazine from August 1999. That's about all there is. No website announcement, no product page, no nothing. I can't understand it. The origins of this company go way back to 1846, they had all the possibilities and probably knowledge too to build a digital camera but instead relied on cheap taiwanese products.

The camera was extremly simple to operate, could only handle 5V smart media cards of 2MB or less and had only a small LCD status display. Two aperture settings for portrait and landscape shooting but an internal flash. These cameras were very, very sensitive and would damage easily. The electronics inside weren't built to stand the test of time and most models don't work anymore today. The card slot was very simple and there was no protection against Smart Media cards being squeezed in the wrong way. I have several models here that may turn on but are unable to record anymore.

This Minton clone was manufactured between 1998 and 2003 in dozens of different versions and labels. You can see most of them in the OEM category on this website. In the picture gallery above you can see Minton's rare original OEM model (thanks to Kameramuzeum) and the Jenoptik version. This camera is a good and extremely cheap starting point for any vintage digital camera collection.

Specifications

  • Brand: Jenoptik
  • Model: JD11 Entrance
  • First mentioned: 1998
  • Marketed: yes
  • MSRP: $149
  • Imager Type: 0.35MP 1/4" CCD
  • Resolution: 640x480
  • Internal Storage: -
  • External Storage: SmartMedia (5V later 3.3V)
  • Lens: f=5.2mm 1:2.8 Fixed Focus
  • Shutter: 1/8s - 1/10,000s
  • Aperture Range: F2.8
  • LCD screen size: -
  • Size: 84 x 80 x 30mm
  • Weight: 122 gr.
  • Remarks: -

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