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ursa Jun 30, 2002 11:52 PM

which digicam has the lowest delay in taking a shot?
I'm thinking of getting a new 3 to 5 MP camera for a trip I'm taking in about a year. Currently I like my Nikon 950 but my biggest dislike is the delay from pressing the shutter to the actual image capture. For family shots it's okay but with the baby moving I keep missing a lot of good shots. I don't want to be in Europe and miss shots - that would be a real kick in the teeth.

I'm looking at getting either a Canon G2 or Nikon 5700 but none of the reviews seem to answer this question. I'd consider going to the Canon D60 SLR but it doesn't have a 'preview' mode with the LCD like the others do - my wife would want that and the lenses aren't as easy as the power zooming all in ones. That's why I'm shying away from an SLR.

Any useful suggestions? I'm open to going with another brand but want a camera that I can go 'manual' on for shots not a simple point and shoot. I'm assuming that any of the ones in my range would do that anyways.

thanks in advance

Gary Senkus Jul 1, 2002 12:10 AM

One thing that really helps on shutter time between the shots. Cameras like the Olympus 4040( about $599) has 32 meg of memory built in as a holding area as the picture is being written to the card. might also look at the Olympus E-20 to see if it will fit buget and needs (about $1300) . Also if you are taking rechargeable batteries you should be able to pick up a cheap battery charger at a dept store over there. Also do not let your memory cards go thru the metal screener at the Airport. Was stationed in Germany from 1979-1988 wish I wa going back for a visit.
Safe Trip,

Lin Evans Jul 1, 2002 12:38 AM

Some considerations
You may be dissapointed here, but there are not many non-removable lens SLR's which can do anything remotely resembling the fast shutter response times of the bigger cameras.

The "best" of those which can give you what you want is only a 1.5 megapixel camera - the Olympus E100-RS. It has pre-capture mode so that you hold the shutter down half way and the camera focuses, sets white balance and exposure and starts cycling up to 5 images at a speed of 15 frames per second into and out of a buffer. When you feel the time is right, press the shutter to take the shot and the camera will continue to capure full frame (1.5 megapixel) images at the rate of up to 15 frames per second (user selectable at 3, 5, 7 or 15 frames per sec) for about a total of 30 frames until has to spill the buffer and "catch up" The last five frames of the pre-capture are flushed to the storage device and you get the best of both worlds. The "catchup time" before you can repeat the above sequence depends on the speed of the memory device being used, but with a microdrive takes about 8 seconds. The E100-RS uses either SmartMedia, CF Type I or II (including MicroDrive) or both and can copy back and forth between media in the camera. It can do short bursts of 30 frame per second (15 seconds) mpgs at 640x380. This camera has a 10x optical stabilized zoom to 380mm and can take a B-300 1.7x tele to get to 623mm of great optical focal length.

The second camera which has a somewhat similar type of feature is the Fuji S602 which has a 5 frame "post capture" feature. You press and hold down the shutter and the camera cycles 5 frames continuously until you release the shutter and the last five frames are saved. The S602 is a 3 megapixel Super CCD model which can interpolate images to six megapixels in firmware and which can use a microdrive like the E100-RS. The S602 can do 640x480 mpg's as long as you have memory. With a fresh battery and microdrive, this could be up to 15 minutes or so of MPG movie... The S602 has a 6x optical zoom to 210mm and can also take the Olympus B-300 1.7x to get to 357mm focal length.

Neither of these cameras actually has that great of a "shutter lag" time, but compensate beautifully with their pre or post capture features.

My suggestion would be to not dismiss the D60 however, because it has an extremely short shutter lag and enough other features to blow either of the above out of the water for image quality. You "can" purchase a 100-400L IS lens which will give you considerable zoom range. Because of the 1.6 crop factor, you are actually shooting at an effective focal length of from 160mm to 520mm. With a 1.4x teleconverter, this can be extended to an incredibly flexible combination. You're right, no preview, but you really don't have a "preview" with the others, only are seeing in the LCD what the lens sees. With the D60 you see what the lens sees in the viewfinder. I suppose I don't really see the relevance or advantage the other way.


[Edited on 7-1-2002 by Lin Evans]

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