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Old Sep 12, 2004, 8:12 PM   #1
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I'm thinking about getting a prepaid cell phone fairly soon, and in case I have the choice of getting a camera phone I would like a few recommendations, with price being an important factor - preferably under $50.
One reason I would like a camera phone (although I'm willing to do without one for right now) is so I can take a few shots of my friends (mostly with indoor lighting without flash or outside in the daytime) and display them on my computer screen. I don't plan to be printing any of these unless I edit them to make multiple pics out of them, or print wallet-size pics.
The main thing is I don't want it to look like a camera, and since I need to get a cell phone anyway, why not get a camera phone? I already have a Canon S1 IS as my regular camera so I'm not looking for a long zoom or high resolution (although the S1 is only 3.2 megapixels).
For resolution I'm quite sure I can get by with 640x480 pixels, and possibly even 512x384. 320x240 would be a bit of a stretch, but if I am able to get considerably lower noise and somewhat more optical zoom (see below) that would be nice.
Optical zoom: if possible a focal length extending to somewhere in the 80 to 120mm range (35mm equivalent).
lens aperture / image noise: I realize the sensor in a camera phone is quite small, so I'm willing to go with lower resolution to help cut down on the image noise. Also, assuming I run at a moderate ISO (say 100 or even 200 if the pics are still decent at that ISO but I doubt it) I would also like to be able to open the aperture wide enough so that under typical indoor house lighting, assuming it's night outside and the 12x18x8ft room is lit by a few 60 or 100 watt incandescent bulbs, I would like to be able to have a properly exposed shot at 1/40" if possible, but considering that I am decent at hand-holding my S1 (but I'm not expecting a stabilizer on a camera phone so this may not apply) I would be willing to settle for a 1/25" or 1/30" shutter speed, so long as I can quickly learn how to take pics of people that aren't posing, but aren't moving really fast. I'm not looking to take a picture of a baseball in flight, just people standing around and stuff like that.
Not to mention I also want to be able to play games and do other stuff on it, so even if I AM taking a pic of someone they will still think I'm probably playing a game or getting ready to make a call.

Any ideas on what's out there?

doesn't look like camera
640x480 res max, 320x240 minimum
good low noise if possible
combo of low noise and aperture to allow 1/30" to 1/40" shutter indoors without flash
<$50 for the cameraphone (I'm on a limited budget and would probably be spending the bulk of my budget (up to $100) for airtime.)
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Old Sep 12, 2004, 11:21 PM   #2
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Check out this one, 3.2mp, 3x optical zoom...looks like a camera on one side (based on Pentax Optio S), looks like a cellphone on the other:

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Old Sep 13, 2004, 1:17 AM   #3
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looks interesting, but the only thing I probably would find use for is the 3x optical zoom. I only need 0.3 to 0.5 megapixel, not 3 megapixel, for what I'm going to be using it for, and it's $650 too expensive.
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