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Old May 2, 2006, 6:53 AM   #6
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Posts: 1,234

Amleth wrote:
I'm going on exchange overseas later this year, and I'm looking to get a nice, pocketable ultra-compact so I have no excuse for not always having a camera on me. When I was looking at them a couple of years back, the Pentax Optio S series and the Casio Exilims were the only ones really as small as I wanted (i.e. pocket it and forget it's there), but looking around nowadays there seems to be an awful lot of models in the "small enough to hide behind a credit card" category. I was really hoping I could gather some experienced opinions to help me narrow down the field of consideration.
My criteria are as follows, (roughly) in order of importance:
  1. Pocketability (esp slimness) [/*]
  2. Image quality (esp low-noise sensor) [/*]
  3. Configurability [/*]
  4. Extra Features (prefer high-res, high-refresh screen, but don't care about size)
Not set totally is stone, though. For example, is one model is slightly bigger than another but takes far better pictures, etc, obviously I'd go for that. I prefer a slim camera over raw MP (e.g., in the Casio line, an S600 is probably better for me than a Z850: 16mm thick vs. 24mm). I don't care too much about weight, I just want compact size. Heck, if they could shrink it down below 10mm thick I wouldn't care if it was made of depleted uranium sheeting, but there's nothing that thin yet...
Oh, and it must use SD memory (to match my PDA and existing cards). Manual settings'd be nice, too, but not a deal breaker. Basically, I want the smallest, most configurable camera I can get without sacrificing too much image quality. Anything much bigger than the old Optio S4 is too large for me, but anything in that ball park is fair game. Any suggestions as to which models I should be looking at would be much appreciated.
Take a look at the Casio EX Z850. There is also a new model coming out... the EX Z1000, but they decided to eliminate the viewfinder. Not that the viewfinders on these cameras is that great, but it's still nice to have.

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