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Old Jul 17, 2005, 7:41 PM   #1
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I'm trying to decide which compact digital camera is right for me. I'm not the best photographer in the world and rarely venture past the auto modes. I currently own a Nikon D70s and Coolpix 8700 but am looking for something small enough to just throw in my pocket or purse and take with me.

I will mainly be using the camera for everyday snapshots, an upcomingtrip to Six Flags, kid's school and sports events, etc. I am going back and forth between the Casio EX-Z750, the Canon SD400 or Canon SD500. Obviously I want a camera with great picture quality in the auto modes (Afraid of what I've read about Casio auto mode performance) and one that is solid and well constructed.

I like the battery life of the Casio, and the fact that I could grow with the camera. I don't like the sharpness or color of some of the same pics as compared to the Canon.

I like the look and feel of the Canons I'm considering but am worried because I've read that the auto modes are rather useless for fast moving things such as sports, etc.

I would really appreciate any help you may be able to offer. Thanks!

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Old Jul 18, 2005, 10:03 PM   #2
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Last February I was making the same decision and chose the Sony P200. Here's a summary a response I made to someone considering it and an SD500:

"I bought the P200 in February and at the time the SD500 had not hit the market. When it came out I thought about switching as I like the general "look" of images from Canon's cameras. I decided to hold on to the P200 once I studied the features of the SD500. Here are the reasons that made me keep the P200:

1 - The battery life and remaining charge indicator on the P200 is better than the SD500. The P200 can give over 200 minutes of shooting time on a charge. I have never come close to draining the battery after a full day of shooting.

2 - The lens on the P200 has no CA issue at all. The samples I saw from the SD500 showed noticeable problems in this area. Also, the P200 lens provides very crisp images. I was really surprised at how well its lens performed.

3 - The LCD is very well protected on the P200. You would have to subject the camera to SERIOUS abuse to break it. I have read where many have broken the LCDs on the SD series cameras.

4 - The P200 has very, very few problems with red-eye on flash shots. The SD500 has the typical problems seen with most small P&S cameras.

5 - The P200 displays shutter/aperture/histogram information real-time before the shot is taken. The SD500 does not. This is useful to know because it tells you if you're about to take a picture that will have a high probability and blur etc.

6 - The P200 has a manual mode where the SD500 does not. This is the main reason I kept the P200. Over the months I used the Sony I came to really rely on the manual mode to get a wide range of shots that I couldn't get with the auto settings. The P200 will sync the flash to shutter speeds up to 1/1,000th of a second. This allows you to freeze about any action that is within the flash's range. It also allows for flash shots at shutter speeds that are lower (1/100, 1/200 etc.) which helps to ensure good crisp images under a variety of circumstances. The other useful feature of the P200 manual mode is the shutter can also extend out to 30 seconds. This allows for long exposure, low ISO night shots. I have taken many photos this way and they really turn out great.

7 - The P200 allows the user to preset the focus. This eliminates shutter lag and greatly improves the user's ability to take quick shots of moving objects that stay in the DOF of the camera's focus setting. Preset focus combined with a P&S's wide DOF makes this a powerful feature.

8 - The P200 is the clear price winner. You can get a P200, 1 gig MS and possibly a spare battery for the cost of the SD500 alone.

The SD500 has some neat features like the "My Colors" but it just didn't make up for the lack of user controls found on the P200. Once I experienced how useful they were to me I just couldn't do without them. "

I still consider the P200 the best P&S available. It makes a great supplemental camera to a DSLR.

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Old Jul 19, 2005, 5:50 AM   #3
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I hate to add even more into the mix, but I have a LS753 and it works great. Circuit City also has them NEW for 200 dollars right now (not sure if price matters)

Also you mentioned auto mode, it has a bunch of different scene modes including sport or action shot, and a great auto focus system. The flash is pretty big for a digicam as well, and for battery I can fill my whole 256 card with the highest quality ( *** ) pics as it dies.

That's the other thing you might want to consider about the casio, the battery life on the Kodak worked out great for me because as it charges I can load the pictures on my comp.

It's also durable as HELL. I've dropped it at a few parties on the concrete from about 4 feet off the ground, and theres only a small nick where the view finder is.

Downsides: the LCD is small. Not completley small, but decently small.

Try to read the review here

However, if you would still like to get the SD400, you can get one for 309 shipped from Dell right now. Click here and add it to your cart. Then enter coupon code: Z9?TN9XD63741V to get $30 off, bringing it down to 309 shipped.
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