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I want a new Digital Camera! Help me decide.

Discussion in 'Through-the-Lens Club' started by OXCOPS, Nov 1, 2004.

  1. OXCOPS

    OXCOPS

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    OK. I am 100% lost on where to start looking. I want a new digital camera. Currently, I have a Sony Cybershot 2.0 Megapixil (DSC-P31). It's a good little camera, but I want something a little better.

    I want something with a decent optical zoom, easy to use and dependable. I have heard that OPTICAL zoom is far more important than DIGITAL zoom, although I don't know the difference between the two really.

    My budget is no more than $500. So, what should I look at?


    TEACH ME! :)
     
  2. CZ-75A

    CZ-75A

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    Digital zoom is an enhancement program that takes an image shot at no magnification and "blows it up" digitally, losing resolution in the process - a nice big fuzzy simulated image. Optical zoom is just that, using lenses and focal length to increase magnification with little or no penalty in resolution (but a decreased in the focal width captured by the lens - just like why binoculars or spotting scopes are needed to scan for a target).
     

  3. MGomez81

    MGomez81 .

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    Let me make a good suggestion for you Ox... you don't have to spend anywhere near $500 to get a decent digital cam. And be realistic, are you going to be doing extensive or complicated photography with it? No? You just need a digital camera to take those occasional pictures and want them to come out well?

    Canon A95 - Just came out, Ebay price can be had around $320-380

    I have the Canon A70 which is 3.2 megapixels, as opposed to the 5 megapixels on the A95, and I have no complaints whatsoever. Easy to use, good features, crisp shots. I bet you could get an A70 for REAL cheap now, if you don't have to have the latest and greatest and want a very decent digicam.

    If you do want the latest and greatest for about $500 (though I just could not justify spending so much on a digicam) I would point you towards the

    Sony DSC-P150

    Ebay Price is estimated to be around 400-450. I have no experience with this one, but I know it is very slim (1"), and packs a 7.2 megapixel punch. Now, after I'd say 4 mexapixels, I don't think the difference is going to be that noticeable. 1 MP to 2MP and 2MP to 3MP, sure, but 4MP to 7.2 MP? I couldn't tell ya, again, that is probably the best for $500.

    If you want to trade a little megapixel for some optical zoom, check out the 6.3 megapixel

    Fujifilm FinePix F810

    4x optical zoom for about the same price as the Sony.

    Me? I'd spend $250 and use the savings for something else worth taking a picture of. ;)
     
  4. P. Pete

    P. Pete

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    Here: LINK you can learn a lot about whats available.

    Be careful shopping on eBay. You may get gray market goods with questionable warranty coverage in spite of what the seller tells you.

    This place: LINK has been reliable and has excellent prices in my experience.

    I have no relationship with these guys, they have just given me excellent service.
     
  5. Dragline

    Dragline

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    Another vote for the Canon A95. Just buy it and be done with it. Research over. You will be happy you did.
    Oh and yeah, just ignore anything to do with a digital zoom feature.
    It's a useless feature. Really.
     
  6. P. Pete

    P. Pete

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    Digi-zoom doesn't give the sharpest results, but on cameras without much optical zoom (the A95 has only 3x, but it and all the Canons are excellent--I have one) it allows you to get pics you wouldn't get otherwise.

    I got some at least recognizable shots of VP Cheney the other day I could never have got at all without it, though they are not exactly razor sharp.
     
  7. Soujurn

    Soujurn Deus Diligo USA

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    This is a duplicate thread but what the heck. :)

    With the A95, you have 3x optical zoom, but you can add the tele exctender for another 1.7x, so you end up with the equivilant of a 190+mm zoom lens. Not bad really. Yeah, you lose a few f-stops, but for daylight photography that shouldnt be much of an issue.

    By comparison the Canon S1 IS, has 10x optical zoom, but only 3.2 Mega Pixels so you dont get as rich or deep saturation with the photos.
    http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_reviews/s1is_qtvr.html
     
  8. RetDet

    RetDet Millennium Member

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    I have found that the most convenient camera of all is the Sony Mavica that uses the 3" CD's. I initialize the compact disk, record the images I want, finalize the disk, and that is my album. I don't deal with silly little cards or anything like that. I don't have to load anything onto the computer and then burn a CD. I get around ninety images on one $.25 compact disk. I store them in little plastic containers that I buy at CompUSA.

    To me, that's the ultimate in simplicity. I love it.

    Forgot to mention that the camera comes in 3.3 and 5 megapixel versions. It is not nearly as compact as most of the other cameras on the market, but it weighs next to nothng. I think the optical zoom is 3X.
     
  9. labrat

    labrat

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  10. Guest

    I have a Kodak 6.1 megapixel DX7630 camera. Best Buy sells em' for about $350 and you'll need the $70 Kodak base to plug into your computer (USB port). I hate online shopping, but if you don't mind it I'm sure you'll find it for much less.

    Get a photoshop program. You can fix pictures taken in bad light, resize them, and cut out parts you don't like. There are pretty decent programs that will do more than you'll ever need for less than $100
     
  11. 45acp4me

    45acp4me Pissed puppet

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    Slim, light and easy to carry:
    http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=30-122-038&depa=0

    Bulky but will give you great zoom capability:
    http://www.insight.com/site/product...0&NugsTracking=Results_No_JS_Title_Full_Specs

    Bulky, slightly less zoom than the above but has higher resolution and slightly more features. If you want to make prints of your photos, this is the route to take.
    http://www.newegg.com/app/viewproductdesc.asp?description=30-122-013&DEPA=7

    Fuji makes great cameras.

    Regards,
    Glen
     
  12. chrisinmo

    chrisinmo

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    Oxcops,

    I have the Canon A60 which is a 2.0 MP version of the above canon. It is a great little camera. You can get the 3.2 MP version of the camera for under $200 I am not sure what the A95 is going for right now. If a big zoom capability is not something you need (it has 3X) than this camera deserves some consideration. I'll list some of the features I like

    Fully automotis or manual control of the different features which allows you to control as much of the exposure as you want or none at all.

    Small size but not so small as to be impractical
    Good picture quality. I get a lot of compliments about how the pics from this camera come out.

    One thing that was importantt o me and that I relaly like is taht it operates on AA batteries not a proprietary rechargable. I use rechargable AA's in it but if the batts in it die I can get AA's just about anywhere. If you have a camera thta uses a dedicated battery and it dies you are just out of luck if you happen to spot bigfoot later that afternoon ;)

    A note on the CD camera the one disadvantage they have is taht the CD requires aht the camera be pretty large and there are memory cards now that are much smaller and hold more info. The convenience of them is cited above but it is not without a cost in size.
     
  13. Chainsaw Maniac

    Chainsaw Maniac

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    Sony CD400, 4 MP. They go pretty cheap now on Ebay. Last time I looked, they were around $400. You can also shoot video with them. They also make a CD500, 5 MP.
     
  14. Ian_Cognito

    Ian_Cognito Old timer

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    Canon, definitely. I'm torn between the A95 and the S1 IS. I really like the 10x zoom of the latter, but it's only 3.2 Mp, which probably isn't a problem til I get up to 8x10's. And it's still more than double the Mp of my current Fujifilm...
     
  15. Glockman67

    Glockman67 #29 Supporter

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    The Canon A-series is the Camry of digital cameras.

    Get the A95, you won't look back, unless you need to upgrade to a Digital SLR.

    My experience?

    1999: Paid $250 for a Kodak DC200+ 1MP.

    2004: Paid $280 for a Canon A80 4MP.

    You can pretty much figure which was the bargain. ;)

    www.imaging-resource.com

    gman67
     
  16. Glock30fan

    Glock30fan Cmbt Tupperware

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    Get a Canon. I had the A20 (2.0 Megapixel) and just bought the A95 (5.0 Megapixel). I don't have a lot of experience with the A95 yet, but the A20 was awesome and the A95 seems to be all that and more. I liked the old Zoombrowser (Canon's photo album software) 1000 x more than the new one, though. Here is a website that tests digital camera and has tons of info.

    www.dpreview.com
     
  17. dkdragon

    dkdragon

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    I just bought a canon powershot s1 IS. Got it from adorama.com. I got the camera (refurb) and a 256m lexan 40x mem card for 325. I love the camera, most of the controls are so simple you can figure them out with out ever opening the book. The 10X optical zoom was what was most important to me, and it is a 3.2 meg pixel. I also love the image stabilization. It also does movies with sound and the 256 card gives me about 275 pics on the next to highest resolution which is still great. Well over 100 pics on the highest resolution. Just my 2 cents. :cool:
     
  18. havensal

    havensal Getting older every day! CLM

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    Here is a thread I started a few weeks ago.

    I baught my wife the Canon A95 from AMERICAN-DEALS $300 shipped.:cool:

    I have done some testing on the hardcopy output at 8.5 x 11. I found that the camera will take better pictures than either of my printer can print.:( I can't remember which printers I have but one is 1200x1200 and the other was 2400x1200.
     
  19. commander

    commander

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    1st off forget about "digital zoom". It's meaningless. If you want zoom lens capability, it's all about "OPTICAL ZOOM".

    Get at least 3.2 megapixel. Unless you plan to do professional enlargements I don't think you need anymore than 5.0 megapixel.

    SD memory is the cheapest. Some cameras require more expensive proprietary memory cards.

    A large viewing area (LCD) is a big plus if you're eyes are old like mine.

    I have a Kodak 4.0 megapixel with 10X optical zoom. It has a large viewing LCD. I paid less that $450.00 a year ago. It's the easiest to operate of all the cameras I tried. :cool:
     
  20. MGomez81

    MGomez81 .

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    10x optical zoom... wow... you may have to check that out OXCOPS... 3x is okay, but 10x optical definetely gets you close. You'll have to decide if it's worth the extra $100 for you.