Kodak Colorburst 100  –  Vintage Camera

Kodak Colorburst 100 (three quarters)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (three quarters)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (three quarters)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (three quarters)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (front view)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (front view)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (rear view)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (rear view)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (with 35mm cassette for scale)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (with 35mm cassette for scale)

Kodak Colorburst 100 (three quarters)Kodak Colorburst 100 (three quarters)Kodak Colorburst 100 (front view)Kodak Colorburst 100 (rear view)Kodak Colorburst 100 (with 35mm cassette for scale)

Kodak Colorburst 100 Specifications

Manufacturer: Eastman Kodak Company
   
Origin: USA
   
Made in: Rochester, NY, USA
   
Introduced: 1978
   
Type: Viewfinder
   
Format: Instant Film (Kodak PR-10)
   
Dimensions: 12.5 x 16.5 x 8.8 cm

Kodak Colorburst 100 Review

The Kodak Colorburst 100 was made during Kodak’s relatively brief foray into instant film. Kodak’s instant film was designed to be exposed from the back which meant that they could make their instant cameras more compact than Polaroid‘s which had to accommodate a mirror for their front-exposing film. Unfortunately, none of that mattered when Polaroid filed a lawsuit against Kodak for patent infringement in 1981. After nearly a decade of deliberation, Kodak eventually lost in court and had to cease production of all instant film and related products as well as pay $925 million in damages to Polaroid (around $1.5 billion in today’s money).

Despite its somewhat rocky history, I quite like this Kodak. It’s relatively handsome for an instant camera of this era and the use of metal and leatherette give it a premium feel. Sliding the focus control back and forth not only rotates the lens but also adjusts the viewfinder’s circular focusing aid which is a nice surprise.

The Kodak Colorburst 100 cost $45 in 1978 (about $160 in today’s money) but was only worth $3 at a thrift store when I picked it up 34 years later. The camera is missing its rubber eyepiece but came with its original leather carrying case along with user manual and other assorted papers.

References:

McKeown, James M. and Joan C. McKeown’s Price Guide to Antique and Classic Cameras, 2001-2002. (Grantsburg, USA: Centennial Photo Service, 2001), 335.

“Polaroid Wins $909 Million From Kodak : Photography: The firms have been involved in a patent-infringement suit for years. Analysts had expected the award to be much larger.,” Los Angeles Times, http://articles.latimes.com/1990-10-13/business/fi-1997_1_instant-photography

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