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Old Apr 24, 2005, 6:17 PM   #1
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I have been looking for a new camera, moving up from 2 megapixels to 5. I was thinking of a Nikon or perhaps a Canon and they seem to be $280 - $400 depending on what I choose. Then I see the Polaroid 5070 at my local Circuit City for $99. Holy cow. I realize it has a fixed lens, no optical zoom, but I can't believe the price.

Can anyone tell me I'd be crazy to try it?


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Old Apr 24, 2005, 6:30 PM   #2
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PaulLeMay wrote:
Can anyone tell me I'd be crazy to try it?
IMO, Yes (unless they have a very liberal return policy with no restocking fees and I had some spare time to waste).

Look, there is a lot more toimage quality than megapixels.

When shopping for a camera, you need to consider the quality of the lens, autofocus speed and reliabilty,how the data is processed from the sensor, metering accuracy, speed of operation, noise levels (which are impacted by sensor type), color accuracy, dynamic range, etc., etc., etc.

I'd be surprised if this camera was capable of capturing as much detail as an old 2 Megapixel Nikon I've got (much less come anywhere near approaching the quality of modern, higher resolution models from major manufacturers).

The sensor is not even the same type you find used in non-DSLR models from Nikon, Pentax, Canon, Panasonic, and most other major manufacturers. It states it's using a CMOS sensor. That's a red flag by itself in consumer level cameras (not even considering everything else that goes into producing a quality product).

I haven't seen any images from this model. Even I I did, I'd make sure they included a variety of conditions. It may be OK for some uses if light is "just right". But, what happens if there is a big difference between light and dark areas of an image, or if light is low? How is color accuracy? Is the lens of high quality, or are the images going to be soft and blurry no matter how good the image processing is?

So, there isno way that I'd consider buying this camera, unless it was thoroughly tested by areputable reviewer.

There is too much junk on the market in this price range.

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Old Apr 24, 2005, 6:40 PM   #3
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One more comment....

Even if the camera had a great lens, super metering, great autofocus, great sensor, and sophisticated image processing techniques rivaling other major manufacturers, addressing my previous concerns (which is very doubtful), the digital zoom only would rule it out for me.

Since resolution (like area) is computed by multiplying width x height, it takes 4 times (not 2 times) the resolutionfor your subject to have the same detail in pixels per inch, if you crop a photo (or use Digital Zoom, which is cropping then interpolating), to make it look like twice the optical zoom was used.

In this scenario (2x Digital Zoom versus 2x Optical Zoom to simulate the same focal length), you'd need 8 Megapixels of resolution just to matchthe detail captured by a 2 Megapixel model,if everything else about the camera was equal.

Edit/Added (yet more comments...) ;-)

Just to clarify something, you don't need more resolution (and I'm referring to the number ofpixels in the image, not the other definition of resolution, which is how much detail a camera is capturing), unless you're printing at larger sizes.

For on screen viewing, smallerimages are fine. Again, the amount of pixels a sensor contains does not translate to more detail in an image (unless you're comparing models with similar lens quality and image processing algorithms). No matter what the resolution of the sensor, if everything else is substandard, the image quality is going to be substandard, too.

For example, a2 Megapixel model with a great lens and image processing, may produce more detail than a 5 Megapixel model with an inferior lens and image processing. This is not usually the case with the larger manufacturers (most have decent quality lenses, etc.), but may well be the case if you are looking in what I consider to be the "junk" class of cameras. This one may or may not fall into that class.

Don't get caught up in the Megapixel wars when shopping for a camera (especially if you don't need larger prints).

According to the product specs on the manufacturer's website, the model you're looking at doesn't even have Autofocus (it's fixed focus). So, at closer ranges, you may not be happy, even if (there's that if word again), the rest of the camera is acceptable.

You're not buying Polaroid as you know it. For this Digital Camera, the Polaroid name was licenced to another manufacturer (World Wide Licenses, Ltd.). Here's a direct quote:

"Polaroid, the Polaroid logo trademarks and the Polaroid trade dress are owned by Polaroid Corporation and are used on this product under license from Polaroid. Polaroid does not manufacture this product or provide any product warranty or support"


My advise, Caveat Emptor, unless it's quality (or lack thereof) has been confirmed by a reputable reviewer.

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