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Old Oct 12, 2003, 5:36 AM   #1
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Default Need help chosing first digital camera

I'm looking at buying my first digital camera. I can only afford something at the lower end of the market maybe 2MP or lower priced 3MP and have done lots of reading, to the point that im now confused by all the new info. I understand that the more MP the better and that optical zoom is better than digital zoom... but... is it better to have a 2MP with optical zoom or a 3MP with digital zoom?

Models I have found in my range are Kodak CX 6200, CX 6230, CX4230, Richo Caplio RR230, Olympus C150, Samsung Digimax 240, Canon Powershot A300, Fuji A205 & A210.

Any advice, comparisons or opinions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks
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Old Oct 12, 2003, 12:54 PM   #2
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I think you are on to some decent models there, do some research and narrow it down a little. Choose optical zoom / 2mp over a 3mp with only digital zoom. With 3mp you can do some limited cropping, with 2mp not too much. Allow some extra money for flash memory and spare batteries (also charger if one is not included). Focus on a select few cams (3-5) and then try to eliminate some. Check the chat forums for feedback on those models, if any. Good luck D
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Old Oct 12, 2003, 4:19 PM   #3
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Ignore digital zoom. It's a marketing gimmick. All it does is take a small section at the center of the image and blow it up to full resolution, which distorts the image (there's not any more detail- it's just bigger). My Sony F717 has 5x optical zoom, and 2x digital on top of that. Because of its 5-megapixel resolution, I can get away with using digital zoom if it's a picture that I'm going to shrink down to 800x600 or smaller to post on the web. Digital zoom of more than 2x on a lower-resolution camera horribly pixellates the image. I also have a Sony P31. It's only 2-megapixel, and it has 3x digital zoom. The zoom is completely worthless. It takes a 400x300 section at the middle of the photo and blowing it up to 1600x1200. The resulting pictures are so fuzzy, they look less sharp than non-zoomed photos even in thumbnail view.

If you are planning to use the zoom a lot, definitely go fo the optical zoom with lower resolution. A picture from the 3-megapixel camera could be cropped to 1024x768, and it would give a similar zoom factor to the camera with optical zoom, but the picture probably wouldn't look as good as one from the 2-megapixel camera that was taken with full zoom and then resized to 1024x768.
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Old Oct 13, 2003, 8:10 AM   #4
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Default Re: Need help chosing first digital camera

Quote:
Originally Posted by Enigma
Models I have found in my range are Kodak CX 6200, CX 6230, CX4230, Richo Caplio RR230, Olympus C150, Samsung Digimax 240, Canon Powershot A300, Fuji A205 & A210.
You might want to consider the Panasonic FZ1. It is 2 MP and 12x optical. Panasonic has announced the FZ10 which will be 4 MP 12x optical zoom. (Details here: http://www.stevesforums.com/phpBB2/v...ic.php?t=14836)
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