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1000words Dec 16, 2003 8:01 PM

missing blue eyes, missed Santa=ready to change! Plz HELP!!!
Just missed a great Santa photo... extremely motivated to get new camera... thanks for offering any help!

My needs... to save precious memories of growing children.
I'm tired of red eyes. I've got 2 blue eyed daughters that will grow up to think they must have had an eye transplant at some point because of all the demon eyed photos in their albums.

I also want camera that will take great pictures in low light times (inside)... a camera that will be able to take a good picture of a child infront of a bright window--- not a picture of the tree outside.

I'm willing to spend around $500. I would like something I can grow with... but automatic and fast enough to catch the spur of the moment, grab the camera type pictures.

I've been trying to read all that I can on the posts and other sites.

Here's my narrowed list (but open for additions):
Sony DSC-V1
Nikon Coolpix 5400
Olympus C-750

Nikon... I've got a sister-in-law that loves Nikon... but have seen some reviews that say this one is poor in low light conditions.

Olympus - 10x zoom... Seems like a zoom comes in handy... why not have it if you need it.

Sony... great review... need to add another memory stick and battery... limited warranty.

Please let me know your opinions...
I don't want to loose another memory!

ohenry Dec 16, 2003 8:18 PM

Here's some help:

Demon eyes (aka redeye) can be avoided by using a flash mounted well above the lens...such as an external flash or by bouncing the flash. Several cameras now feature an option to reduce red eye by firing a preflash. Alternatively, print programs also offer methods to remove the red eye.

Taking a picture of someone standing in front of a bright window is a trick regardless of which camera you are using although some will handle it better than others. The problem with a bright background is that the cameras meter is fooled by the bright light. It wants to make that bright point expose to 18% gray tone. The result is that the rest of the scene is underexposed. The way around that requires knowledge of overriding your meter and manually adjusting so as to get the proper exposure. The exposure meter is only capable of doing SO much. The operator of the camera is required to have some knowledge of the capabilities of the cameras automatic features.

Now, there are many cameras available to you that will grab those shots of your precious little ones before they leave the nest. Your price range is the limiting factor. I can't give you a specific camera or model to satisfy your question ... Steve probably can, maybe some of the others that are into comparing cameras. Just bear in mind that NO camera will give you perfect pictures every time without some input from you.

slipe Dec 16, 2003 8:56 PM

All three are excellent cameras but with very different features.

The V1 has a holographic laser focus system which is great for low light. It also takes very nice 640 X 480 movies for when you don’t have your camcorder handy.

The Nikon has a wide angle lens that improves a lot of shots and I like the flip out LCD. You can get nice candids if you aren’t standing behind the camera pointing it at someone. The low light focus would be a constant hassle though. There are tricks like pre-focus on something brighter or with better contrast – flash shots don’t seem to suffer from the difference in ambient light between the pre-focus (and pre-meter) point and the final shot. But that is still a hassle.

The Oly 750 has a long zoom but it is hard to handhold at 10X except in bright outdoor light or with flash. It seems to give the same low light problems exacerbated by a EVF viewfinder that doesn’t brighten in low light like some other cameras.

All small cameras will give red eye because the flash is close to the lens. You can use the red eye reduction flash or buy an external flash unit that has a hot shoe – all of the cameras you listed have a hot shoe.

I would personally go with the V1. It has continuous autofocus which is a great feature for candids of kids, people at gatherings etc. Most of your shots will be in focus because of the superior hologram focus and you can get an external flash when red eye bothers you. Most image editing software has red eye removal that is pretty easy to use.

For shots in front of a window the flash will reflect. Your best bet is to use the spot meter and meter your subject in front of the window – the background will be overexposed. Another approach is to have the window at an angle so the flash doesn’t reflect back and use flash – both the subject and background will be exposed OK that way.

1000words Dec 16, 2003 9:01 PM

Thanks for the thoughts!

Agree that the operator needs improvement too... hence request for camera to grow with. When I had a brain (pre-children), I used to play with SLR. When I get a chance, I want to re-learn the tricks. Current problem is that my HP612 display died where any adjustments to camera are shown... I'm stuck in ???? land.

For red-eye, guess I could look at cameras and see which flash pops up the highest???

Anyone have good success with their camera in backlight situations???

1000words Dec 16, 2003 9:13 PM

Thanks slipe!
Thanks for your thoughts too!

I hadn't thought about the candid aspect of the Nikon... good point.
I really couldn't figure an advantage for the flip around panel.

Your point of the superior hologram focus, I believe to be most important in shots for me... thanks for highlighting that.

Guess I'm destined to have an external flash too.... eventually.

Looks like a vote to confirm my Sony evaluation


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