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-   -   good compact low-light fast-shutter no-flash low-res camera? (

pianoplayer88key May 26, 2004 5:22 PM

(pasted from original topic " What's the closest I can get to...." posted on dpreview)

low priced on ebay - good chance of being able to snag one for < $100-150 (even if they were several times higher when they were new a few years ago or whenever)

minimum 0.8 (1024x768) or 1.0 (1152x864) megapixels, preferably 1.3 (1280x960), 2.0 would be ok too (1600x1200) megapixels (but 3.2 is too much for the size I want and the high-ISO image noise I'm trying to keep it under.
sensor size: minimum 1/2", preferably 2/3" or if possible a little larger

fixed focal length of somewhere between 38 and 50 mm (35mm equivalent), preferably with lens housed completely in the camera

btw... sensor pixel density preferably under 200 to 250.... by comparison my S1 IS is 2048 / 5.27 = approx 388 pixels per mm of sensor, whereas my A80 which I'm replacing with this cam (I want to get something cheaper and I'll be using the S1 for pretty much everything else except nearby low-light fast shutter photography) is 2272 / 7.18 = approx 316 pixels per mm of sensor (btw a Sony F717 is 2560 / 8.8 = approx 291 pixel/mm, an Olympus E-1 is 2560 / 18 = approx 142 pixels/mm, a Canon Rebel is 3072 / 22.7 = approx 135 pix/mm) ... preferably in the 150 to 180 range or so.

fairly compact - smaller than S1 IS, can be maybe a little bigger than A80 (I want to be able to put it in my pocket)

up to at LEAST ISO 400 or 800 (1600 would be nice cause I'll be taking a lot of fast-shutter pics without the flash in low light with this camera (in fact that's going to be my MAIN use of the camera)

autofocus & manual focus (can be electronic/pushbutton - considering the size of a camera I'm looking for I don't need a mechanical focus ring
normal focus preferably as close as approx. 30cm in front of the lens
aperture: MINIMUM F/2.8, would prefer F/2.0 or even F/1.4 or 1.0 if possible

I don't need much of a closed-down aperture - I probably won't be using anything higher than 4.0 and maybe occasionally 5.6
shutter speed range of maybe 1 second or 1/4 second to around 1/250 to 1/500 sec

aperture and shutter priority plus full manual control would be really nice to have

continuous drive would be nice but wouldn't be that big of a loss if it didn't have it

oh, btw... compactflash or smartmedia is greatly preferred, but I'd be willing to consider another type of memory if I could still hold at least 50 to 75 pics at highest quality on a relatively cheap card.
prefer that it uses AA or AAA batteries.

I haven't found anything that precisely meets specs like that, though.

What's the closest I can come that is compact (similar in size to A80) that is good for low-light photography, considering for what I'm going to be using it for I only need about 1.3 megapixels (and a fixed focal length somewhere between 35 and 50mm) - I'll be taking head+shoulder+half-torso shots of active people from maybe 3 feet away and full-length shots about 8 feet to 10 feet or so (give or take some distance as I'm not good with judging distances off the top of my cabesa). It needs to be fairly compact - when it's turned on as small as the A80 when that one's turned off and its lens is retracted)

I'll mainly be using this to take fast-shutter low-light pics of people that are active / playing sports / etc... but in my house or at a friends' house / yard, not at a ballpark. In order to get the fast shutter speed, I would like to be able to get a wide open aperture, and/or have a relatively large sensor relative to the pixel count so I can expect reasonable high ISO performance preferably better than the Sony F-717, comparable to the Olympus E-1 (but willing to settle for less than the Fuji S2, Canon 10D, etc...) btw I don't need a true SLR - it needs to be considerably smaller than those and i have no plans to attach extra lenses to it.

So... what's the best compact camera for under $100-150 (on ebay) that will get good fast-shutter very-low-light pics?

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