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Old Jul 18, 2002, 11:39 AM   #11
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Old Jul 18, 2002, 2:06 PM   #12
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Certainly some valid points are being made. It emphases my dilema: I want a small 5MB with at least a 4x optical zoom to compliment my Canon D-60 outfit. I don't really like any of them. I had an Olympus E-20, which was a terrific camera in my opinion. Still, I didn't like the feel, and it's too large to serve as my "small" digital. I sold it.

I'm hoping that the 5700 "might do," even if it does have some weaknesses. I don't need 8X, and doubt that I could hold it steady, but compromise, compromise, compromise seems to be the name of the game.
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Old Jul 18, 2002, 5:25 PM   #13
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I just bought my first camera too!

All I can say is that you have come to the right place. I lurked here for a week before I made up my mind. It won't tell you what camera you need, but it WILL tell you what to look for and what the downsides are.

I have the same needs, a close focus and a telephoto. Yesterday after TONS of research, I bought the Olympus C-720. It has a 8x optical focus with 3mp, so not only does it take good telephoto, it has lots of detail. I'm a graphic artist, so that can be really important to me. Also, the close-up shots were better than I could find in another camera.

I went to a lot of local stores (OK, all 5 of them). I ended up at Shutterbug a local chain. I told the salesman (Simon, we are on first name basis with all the time I spent there!) what I needed and he recomended this unit. I had not planned to spend this much on a camera ($599), but it was the only one that gave me what I needed. I spent almost 2 hours there, asking questions about anything I could think of. I then came home and researched all the good and bad reviews I could find. Then I went back and had him address the negative remarks I had found (another hour!). I took with me a bead necklace on a white background and one of my paintings, as those are the objects I will be taking pictures of. Couldn't take my animals into the mall, so I couldn't test that.

The telephoto lens picked up details in a restuarant down the mall from us, in poor lighting. I was shocked to see how clear the detail was. The close-up on the bead turned out better than the ones that we had a professional photographer take, and the color was so close to the original I won't even have to tweak it. Also, under cons, it said the camera sometimes left purple tinges on things with white backgrounds, and didn't work well in dim light, so I tested the bead on a white background. When I got home, I tested the dim background. I don't really know how to run the camera yet, so I was pleasantly surprised that the picture I took turned out so well. Will be even better when I know what I am doing.

So, I recommend finding a store that will let you take the pictures yourself, and print them out for you. Take take some objects that you would normally shoot. The lighting won't be right, but you can get an idea. Check out any cons that you might have run across in your research. You can afford more camera than I can, so your options will be wider. A lot of stores will give you at least a few days to take the camera home and try it out, if you don't like it, you take it back. Best Buys has this policy, but the closest one to you is in Fargo.

I was overwhelmed too, so it really was important for me to have someone to explain the cameras to me. I came with tons of research, so I didn't need to take the sales pitch at face value. If I made a mistake, I have 7 days to return it, which takes the pressure off of me...this was a major purchase on my budget. Also find a store that will price match, and come prepared with the lowest prices...you can usually get these off the internet. If you are spending that much money, you can usually get them to give you a good deal. So far I love the camera, and feel I got more than what I orignally planned. I'll let you know in a week how I like it! I did have to go home and get away from the hype to think about it, it was almost overpowering to buy a camera right there and then. If I had, I would have originaly bought a camera that I wouldn't have been nearly as happy with.

I personally wouldn't buy one off the internet, because I am too ignorant, and need someone locally who can answer my questions. You might do an internet search for your area and see if some more photo shops show up.

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Old Jul 18, 2002, 10:13 PM   #14
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You guys are really great. Thanks for so much information. I have been doing quite a bit of research. I have also read quite a bit here on this forum. I really loved seeing all of the pictures that have been posted also.

I had to take some time away from looking at cameras. (smiling) I am going to look again tomorrow after work. I really would like to see a Minolta DiMage D7i and get a chance to take a few pictures with it. Hopefully one of the shops will have one in stock. I will let all of you know how that goes.
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Old Jul 19, 2002, 11:21 AM   #15
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sjms motivated me to check the reviews and comments on the D7i. I must say it looks impressive. I haven't handled it, and it may be too big for my second, carry-around camera. Still, I really do want a 5MB with at least a 4X optical. Maybe I'll take a look.

Thanks, sjms.
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