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Old Apr 15, 2009, 10:30 PM   #1
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There are too many choices. We currently have a 5 year old Kodak that has served us well. But, we would like to upgrade to more megapixels, etc.

This is what we are looking for:

1. A camera that takes good pictures of our kids (quick autofocus)

2. A camera that takes better indoor pictures that our Kodak as our house doesn't have the best lighting.

3. Fairly easy to use - we don't need a bunch of lenses, etc.

4. Preferably a viewfinder instead of just a lcd screen (we don't feel you can see those well in bright light).

5. Preferably less than $300 though we could go higher

6. Easy to take along on vacations, etc. but not too small

Any suggestions of where to start? We got someone a Canon A540 and I thought the automatic mode pictures were slow to take. We can't have that when you are trying to catch the "moments" with small children.
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Old Apr 20, 2009, 9:04 PM   #2
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Sorry no one has responded... sometimes posts fall through the cracks. Without going into too much detail, I'm going the recommend the Panasonic FZ28.

It can be purchased for under $300, it's pretty speedy and is both not too big and not too small. It offers very good image quality up to about ISO 800, which means it'll handle low-light situations better than your old Kodak. It has a long zoom range, which means you won't need extra lenses - making it a wonderful vacation camera.

And if you're not into manual controls (which it features), you can always select one of the scene modes or the "Intelligent Auto" mode, which selects the appropriate scene mode for you. Scene modes include things like portrait, landscape, sports/action and, yes, even child. It really works and works well. It also has both an LCD and an electronic viewfinder.

Below, I'm posting a comparsion test that features the FZ28 and several other cameras in its class:


But, if you're not looking for a camera with that kind of zoom range, here is a similar comparison test of so-called premium compact digital cmaeras that might interest you.


In either case, take your time, read the full test and look carefully at the photos. And one last piece of advice... you can help speed up autofocus by selecting the single-point or center-point option in a camera's menu. Using multi-point autofocus slows things down. But if you're taking shots of a group of people, you might want to use multi-point focus.

Hope this helps. Good luck and welcome to Steve's
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Old Apr 24, 2009, 3:35 PM   #3
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The Kodak Z-1012 (12X Optical zoom-10mp) has just been reduced to $199.95 and it is an excellent camera. Steve did a review of the Z-1012 and liked it a lot.

Sarah Joyce
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