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Old Jul 13, 2004, 5:17 AM   #1
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I'm looking for a digital camera that enables me to take super macro pictures. At first I would like to find one that doesn't require a special add-on lens and isn't a digital SLR.

Right now I have onlyfound 2 cameras with that function, butif youknow additionalmodels please post it

1. Konica Minolta DiMAGE Z2. Super Macro; 1.2 inches at 11.1mm

2. Fuji Finepix S7000. Super Macro: 0.4in-7.9in



Thanks.
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Old Jul 13, 2004, 5:39 AM   #2
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3. Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom. Super Macro mode: 1" to 8" (0.03m – 0.2m)

4. Nikon Coolpix 5400. Macro mode 0,4".



I guess the only downside with the camera's that I have found is that they aren't exactly small camera's. But I guess that is how you look at it. At first I would have liked to buy a small camera that could fit in my pocket, because then I could allways have the camera with me. But I guess I will have to make a compromise. I looked at the Sony DSC-W1 as an option at first, but the macro focus only goes from 3.9" ->.

Perhabs I should narrow down my question. What I'm really looking for is the smallest camera that enables me to take really good macro/super macro pictures.

Right now I'm mostly leaning towards the Dimage Z2 because of it's fairly good picture/macro capabilities, very good video part and low price.



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Old Jul 13, 2004, 6:05 AM   #3
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Have you looked at the Sony DSC-T1. It has a magnify setting that goes to 1 cm (13/32"). Ii have taken photos of small electronic components and boards to document damage or part numbers with good results. I'll see if I can find some of them and post if you would like.



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Old Jul 13, 2004, 6:18 AM   #4
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That magnify setting isn't that just a digital magnifying? Like if I take a picture and zoom in on the picture in i.e. photoshop?

The DSC-T1 was infact my first choise because of it's small size, but I just read so many posts from people not being satisfied with it's quality. Then I started to look at the W1.

Please post your pictures, that would be very helpfull. Many thanks
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Old Jul 13, 2004, 6:58 AM   #5
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You can't go by focus distance alone when looking for a camera capable of good macros.

You need to look at the minimum area a camera can capture in macro mode, as well as the amount of distortion. You also need to consider Depth of Field in Macro Mode (some cameras allow you to stop down the aperture via aperture priority or manual modes -- some don't). A smaller aperture (higher F/Stop Number) is needed for greater depth of field (more of the image in focus) at macro distances.

For example: the Fuji S7000 you mentioned can "fill the frame", with an area as small as about 26mm (about an inch) across. This is considered very good. However, distortion at it's closest focus point is very high. Like most cameras, it's best macro mode (smallest area it can capture) is at it's full wide angle lens position. Thismeans high barrel distortion and corner softness.

The Nikon "Swivel Bodied" models (Nikon Coolpix 950, 990, 995, 4500) have the best macro mode. They can "fill the frame" with an object around 3/4" across, with virtually no distortion. This is because the macro "sweet spot" is at around half zoom (unlike most models, where it's at full wide angle). So, you'll get virtually no distortion with the Swivel Bodied Nikons. Other digicams don't even come close to their macro ability.

Unfortunately, the latest swivel bodied Nikon (Coolpix 4500) is no longer being manufactured. However, it's still considered to be a current model, so you may be able to find one somewhere.

About 6 months ago, youcould also find the 4500 for under $400.00 in factory refurbished condition. So, you may want to search around for one, if the best macros are important to you.


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Old Jul 13, 2004, 7:27 AM   #6
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If you'd like to see a super macro I took with the Z2, go here:

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...07&forum_id=20
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Old Jul 13, 2004, 10:43 AM   #7
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Hey ignavia,

I have allready seen your photo because that photo was what lead me to the Z2 But I have seen that a newer model is coming out. The Z3 and that looks very nice.



Jimc,

Thanks for the info! I'm no photo geek (Not yet) but I must admit that macro photo's fascinate me. My girlfriend got a Minolta dynax 500si and if this macro shooting interest continues I will see if I can get a special macro lens for that camera. But it's not digital.

I have actually just seen the coolpix 4500 in a store an hour ago. And you can get the macro cool-light SL-1 for that camera.

I wonder how much better the coolpix 4500 are in macro mode compared to the Konica Minolta Z2/Z3?
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Old Jul 14, 2004, 2:00 PM   #8
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Phew!

I have used (almost) the entire day searching the net for information and looking at macro pictures. Found a Danish site where people post their pictures and they had well over 5000 macro pictures. To each picture you could read the camera settings and what camera they had used. The funny thing is that I saw very nice macro pictures taken by what I would call "low-end cameras". This in a way helped me, but on the same time also made me more confused :? Also saw very nice pictures taken by the Olympus CAMEDIA C 765UZ which is a fairly small camera and not a camera I have been considering before. I would like to find a camera that cost no more than the Fujifilm Finepix S7000 (640$us in DK) and absolute max is about what the Nikon coolpix 5700 costs (840$us in DK).

Suggestions are still very welcome.



Still not sure about the coolpix 4500, since it lacks some features that newer camers/models got.

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Old Jul 14, 2004, 2:32 PM   #9
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ledderlappan wrote:
Quote:
Still not sure about the coolpix 4500, since it lacks some features that newer camers/models got.

What features are you looking for?

BTW, Steve Sanders (owner/editor of this site) has probably used more cameras than just about anyone (look at the number of reviews he performs).

You may want to look at some of his posts about it:

His reponse tosomeone asking about cameras with good macro ability:

"The digicams that wrote the book on macro mode are Nikon Coolpix 950, 990, 995, 4500".

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...amp;forum_id=2

His response to someone asking what camera was used for his product photos (since the posternoticed that they were so amazing and clear -- especially the closeups of the dials and buttons:

"I use a Coolpix 4500, before that we used a Coolpix 995, before that we used a Coolpix 990. There do have some of the best macro capability in the business."

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...amp;forum_id=2

Now, whether or not you need macro ability this good, depends on how you plan on using the images. If for web posting only, then almost any digicam will work (since you can simply crop the center portion of an image for web viewing).

However, if you want the "best macro", go with a swivel bodied Nikon.


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Old Jul 14, 2004, 3:10 PM   #10
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ledderlappan wrote:
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Perhabs I should narrow down my question. What I'm really looking for is the smallest camera that enables me to take really good macro/super macro pictures.
Well -- you may want to look at the Nikon Coolpix 3700, too. I've seen macro tests showing it able tocapture a field of view of 3 cm (1.17 in.) horizontally. This isn't quite as good as the Swivel Bodied models, but it's much better than most.

Again, don't go by closest focus distance (since it can be very misleading). You have to look at how small of an object you can "fill the frame" with.

You'll find that the "Super Macro" modes in most other models only allows the closest focus distance at full wide angle (where you typically get a lot of barrel distortion and soft edges trying to shoot at their closest focus distances).

Well, just like the Swivel Bodied Nikons, the little Coolpix 3700 has a "macro sweet spot" that's closer to mid zoom. So, you'll get virtually no distortion.

Now, you won't be able to "stop down" the aperture to get greater depth of field (as in the Swivel Bodied Nikons). This is often why you ofen see macro photos from many models, with only a tiny portion of the image in focus (with a lot of blur, as you get further away from the focus point).

Most cameras without the ability to control aperture, are going to shoot "wide open" in lower light. Unfortunately, the larger the aperture, the shallower your Depth of Field. So, personally, I'd prefer a camera like the CP 4500 (versus a subcompact model like the 3700), if my primary interest was macro photography.

BTW, the Nikons also have another unique feature known as Best Shot Selector. I've found it especially useful for getting sharper photos at slower shutter speeds without using a tripod. When in this mode, you can hold down the shutter button, while the camera rapidly takes multiple photos. When you release the shutter button, it automatically saves the sharpest photo. My guess is that it takes the one with the largest file size (since when shooting in JPEG, larger files equate to more detail).


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