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Old Dec 28, 2003, 2:19 PM   #1
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Default Auto focus low-light illuminator worth it?

Hi guys. I am wondering if anyone can share experiences of using compact digital cameras with and without auto focus low-light illuminators. Will the lack fo this feature render a digi-cam useless in low light conditions such as bars, family gatherings in dark basements, etc.? Or will the pictures be of acceptable quality? Thanks.
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Old Dec 28, 2003, 3:30 PM   #2
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I think that a focus illuminator is a required part of any camera and I always take a shot at the manufacturers in my review conclusions when they don't include one. Most cameras will fail miserably in low to no light situations as the auto focus needs light to perform its magic.

Canon and Sony have "seen the light" as all of their cameras have AF assist lamps. The latest Coolpix 3700 has one as does the Olympus C5060 and C5050 and many other digicams have it too as do all of the higher end digital SLR cameras.

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Old Dec 28, 2003, 7:13 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by steve
the auto focus needs light to perform its magic.
Given the enormous depth of field with the short focus lenses we have on digicams, wouldn't it be an advance if we threw out autofocus and had 4 buttons to push for different distances as on very cheap kiddies' 35mm cameras of the olden days?

I have had endless focus failure difficulties, but in every circumstance I'd have been able to guess the right range more than adequately, without using autofocus at all.
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