On April 11, my family and I had a chance to see the Harlem Globetrotters in Minneapolis. During the game I managed to take 40-50 photos to remember the game, until I was asked not to by an overzealous usher and security guard.
Initially the usher, whom I will call Zella since I don’t know her name, thought I was shooting video because of the focus assist light on my camera, but with the help of the person sitting behind me, I was able to shut this light off. Turning off the focus assist light initially satisfied Zella. As the game progressed Zella began to get more and more obnoxious, staring at my camera. About halfway through the game, Zella had security guard I will call Karl order me to stop taking any photos. Karl’s reason was that my camera, the Casio EX-F1, with its built-in lens was bigger than his security pass. Karl could not explain the logic behind this rule. I, Karl felt threatened and that he needed to control the situation even though no signs prohibited photos.
Zella and Karl went on to harass other people, and I sat back and enjoyed the rest . I took a few more photos at the end of the game when the players signed autographs an posed for pictures. Overall, I was pleased that I had some photos to remember the day.
The problem came the next day. I put my memory card into my computer planning to transfer the photographs onto the computer. I did not have time to transfer the photos and moved the card back into my camera so that I could take more photos. We were having lunch with some friends.
When I placed the card in my camera I received a card read error. I tried a numbver of other readers and I either received the same read error or the card reader did not recognize the card. At this point, I knew I had a problem. I contacted a consultant that I had worked with in the past and he suggested either using a data recovery program or contacting an outside recovery firm.
The simplest solution was a data recovery program. I tried Photo Rescue and Image Rescue 3 without success. Both of these programs have free trial versions so they do not cost anything unless they actually recover your photos.
The next step was to take the corrupt card to National Camera, where I purchased it and see if they could do anything. I brought my card in and they indicated that they would attempt to recover the data and the charge would be $20, if they were able to recover my photos. Unfortunately, they were no more able to recover my photos than I was.
At this point I called the card manufacturer, Promaster. Promaster told me that they would be happy to replace my card but that it was unlikely that they would be able to recover my photos. Here’ s the real question: after a memory card fails do you really want a card produced by the same manufacturer. I think not.
My final attempt was to send the card to rediskme. This company charges $125 for data recovery from camera cards. Rediskme was also unable to recover any images.
At this point I have two additional options, one that was recommended by rediskme and one recommended by Promaster. Unfortunately, DriveSavers at $490 and Ontrack at $1000 were more expensive than I was willing to pay.
The corrupt camera card is now sitting in my desk drawer awaiting a better recovery solution. Let me know if you have any ideas and remember to transfer and backup your digital photos.