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Old Dec 20, 2005, 4:03 PM   #1
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My daughter needs a digital camera to take with her when she travels, so it shouldn't be too big---but she is also a jewelry maker, and needs to take close-ups of her jewelry, so it has to have a good zoom lens so she can shoot those shots. What camera would you suggest?

Sorry for the double post--but I should add that she isn't a photographer, so needs something pretty simple.
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Old Dec 21, 2005, 8:11 AM   #2
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There are only a handful of cameras that give an even moderately small macro area when zoomed out. Most cameras will get the smallest area in a closup at wide angle. I don't know of any current small camera that has really good macro capability zoomed. So zoom isn't a factor for the macro in a small camera.

Another issue is whether the flash will adequately light the target when the lens is really close. Some of the folded lens cameras seem to do OK because the lens doesn't extend and get in the way. The best of the folded lens cameras for overall use is the Sony T9 with optical image stabilization and better than average noise at higher ISO. If your daughter wants to use the camera flash I would wait for Imaging Resource to do a review – they test that well.

The Nikon S1 is great for macro but is not the overall everyday camera the T9 is. The flash works with the macro down to the closest focusing, which is very close.

If your daughter wants quality shots to show off her jewelry then she will need to set up some external lighting. That gives her a much wider range of choices with good zooms like the Nikon S4. But if she wants to use the camera flash for very close macro work the internal folded lens cameras work well. And the T9 seems to be a super tiny camera. You might wait for Imaging Resource to do a review of the T9 as there is a macro section that covers flash use. The S1 flash works well with macro.

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Old Dec 21, 2005, 10:17 AM   #3
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I have a Sony DSC-V1 which has been great for travel. I also use it for close up shots for eBay auctions.

It's an advanced camera which means you can use it as a point n shoot camera and it also has manual override so you can use it like a proper camera too, like a DSLR but it has a fixed lens. It has a macro setting and a hot shoe for an external flash, so you can point the flash away from the subject.

I usually take my close-up shots in good light rather than rely on a flash. I also use a mini-tripod which you should be able to pick up on ebay for about $10-$15.

I've no idea if the DSC-V1 is still available I've had mine 2 1/2 years now. But I'm sure there's a later version such as the DSC-V3 which is just as good.
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