Ive just received a very old Canon A95 camera from eBay.

I installed batteries, turned the camera on and the lcd screen appears to be defective. The image on the screen is distorted and sometimes shows partial black bars. It's also flickering and has faint horizontal lines. It's also a monochrome image as well - no colour except for when the camera first turns on - showing a blue screen initially. It is very difficult to make out and recognise what it is I'm looking at on the screen when I point the camera at various things. It's pretty much unusable. Despite this, the camera was described as being in "great working condition."

I contacted the seller about the problem and his response was: "Did you get a memory card for it? It needs a memory card to work properly."

I don't have any experience with Canon Powershot cameras but I'm finding it hard to believe that installing a memory card is going to cause the lcd screen to magically become normal again and present me with a usable image. By the way, I have heard that many Canon A95s have had CCD problems that cause all sorts of weird artifacts in both the lcd screen and the resulting photos. That's what I was assuming was happening here.

Unfortunately, getting a compact flash memory card for it and testing it is not that straight forward (or cheap.) Ive found out that they cost about $40. And if it turns out that it doesn't fix the problem, I don't have any other cameras that uses this type of card.

For people here who have used older Powershot cameras like the A95, is it normal for the lcd image to be all distorted and occasionally partly black before inserting a memory card? Just giving the seller the benefit of the doubt for the moment.