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Old Nov 12, 2003, 1:42 PM   #1
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Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 23
Default Need help picking a cheap camera with decent macro

Hey all

I am looking for a camera for work. Here is what I need.
Cheap (under $200.00) Preferably something I can pick up used, refurb, or on Ebay cheap.
decent macro/some manual focus ability
~3x optical zoom
USB port.

Reality is that 1.2 mp is more than I need for this. It is for emailing pics of product to people at work.... so small files are great, but it has to be able to do macro.

Other stuff:
Non-proprietary connections, cards, batteries, and chargers would be a plus.

So far, I have looked at the Sony FD-100 and the DSC-p30. Those are great for what I need, but a little pricey.

I have used the HP 210 and the Kodak 3700 and hate both -- they just aren't capable of doing what I need in terms of being able to focus on something specific when I want them to. They tend to focus on the desk or floor instead of the parts


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Old Nov 12, 2003, 3:16 PM   #2
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378

Ritz has the Nikon Coolpix 2500 for 149.99 (after a $50.00 Nikon rebate), or a Nikon Factory Reconditioned one for only $119.99 (no rebate needed).

This camera has an outstanding macro mode (as do all of the Nikon Digital Cameras). It can "fill the frame" with an object as small as 1.3 inches (3.2 cm) across, with virtually no distortion, since the macro "sweet spot" is at around half zoom. See the macro tests of this model on this review page (scroll down, and you'll see it):


See it for only $119.99 at this link refurbished:


By the way, I've personally purchased a camera reconditioned by Nikon before (the Nikon Coolpix 950 I wanted for some macro work, and I'd previously owned the Coolpix 995, so I knew how good the Nikons are at macros). It arrived in perfect, like new condition. I was unable to tell it from a new camera in any way. Ditto for the packaging, manuals, software, cables, etc.

If you insist on paying more. You can also buy the Nikon Coolpix 2500 new for around $200.00 (Ritz Camera stores have them at $199.99, but they're out of stock online right this minute), and your final price would be only $149.99 after Nikons current $50.00 mail in rebate on this model. Here is the rebate form:


BTW, PC Magazine tested 10 cameras for under $300.00 in it's Oct. 2002 issue (the price on the Coolpix 2500 had dropped to $299.95 at the time of the review, from it's original retail of $379.95).

These cameras were the Canon Powershot A200, Casio Exilim EX-M1, FujiFilm Finepix 30i, HP Photosmart 620, Kodak EasyShare LS420, Minolta DiMAGE X, Olympus Camedia D-520 Zoom, Sony Cybershot DSC-P51, Toshiba PDR-3300, and Nikon Coolpix 2500.

This camera, the Nikon Coolpix 2500, was the "Editors Choice" at $299.95

So, for your needs, I don't think you can buy a better camera for the money, with a factory reconditioned model at only $119.95 (delivered -- the price includes shipping). Heck, you could buy 2 of these for only $239.90, and have two cameras, 2 USB Cables, 2 Chargers, 2 batterys, 2 memory cards, etc. You wouldn't even need to worry about sending in rebate forms and waiting for your money back either.

You'll want a spare battery, and more memory than Nikon ships with the small card in the camera anyway, and you could even charge both batteries at the same time with two chargers. Chances are, the cost of the spare memory card, extra charger, and extra battery, would cost more than the whole extra camera at only $119.99 each delivered, and you'd also have a spare camera for insurance if it ever breaks.
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Old Nov 13, 2003, 1:01 PM   #3
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sounds like just what I need.

I wish it took normal AA batteries, but for price and features, I think this one is a winner.

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Old Nov 13, 2003, 1:06 PM   #4
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
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There are pros and cons to battery type. This model does come with a rechargeable lithium ion battery and charger.

Some models using AA batteries do not come with rechargeable batteries and charger. So, these are items you'd need to purchase separately (and you'll find that AA Alkaline Batteries are a waste of money -- the LCD's draw too much power for these to be practical in a Digital Camera). Instead, with cameras using AA batteries, you'll need high capacity NiMH Rechargeable batteries.
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Old Nov 13, 2003, 6:06 PM   #5
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 3

For what it's worth, I just received a Fujifilm FinePix A310, brand new in the box, to my door for $200.90, shipping free.


FinePix S5000
FinePix A310
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