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Old Dec 7, 2002, 10:06 AM   #1
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Default Digicam Choice for Low-tech older users?

Does anyone have any recommendations for an easy to operate digital camera that low-tech older people can operate with relative ease? My parents travel a lot and would like to take a digital camera.

Also, when traveling, is it better to carry a couple of mid-size compact flash cards (128MB) for storage or one larger one (512MB)?

I guess the battery issue is also a good one. If they are traveling internationally, they have to consider battery options and carry a spare or two. Is it better to go with rechargeables or alkaline or lithium?

These are all my considerations. Fortunately cost is not an huge issue for them. Which camera would be a good all around easy to use digital travel camera? Thanks in advance for your help with this.

Ken
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Old Dec 7, 2002, 1:15 PM   #2
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Default Oly

I've used an Olympus D340L for years, and it's extremely easy to use. I'd suggest your folks get one of the lesser expensive Olympus instamatic-style cameras...they use SmartMedia, which isn't as widely used as CF, but it works well enough. And I suggest you get the largest digital film you can afford...you won't regret it. Ideally you want to avoid swapping memory cards...just for convenience' sake. Batteries...I highy recommend rechargables...NiMI ideally.
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Old Dec 8, 2002, 3:03 PM   #3
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If they are traveling out of the country, I would rather use alkaline, they are cheap and I'm sure you can find them anywhere, or just take an 8 pack with you.
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Old Dec 8, 2002, 8:03 PM   #4
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Keep in mind an old rule, "Never go on vacation with a new camera." It takes a bit of time to figure out any new camera (digital or chemical) - no one wants to spend their vacation reading a manual. Or figuring out how many batteries are needed. Or looking for somewhere to buy more memory. Or ....

Make the best guess at what camera will fit their needs and get it when they return from vacation. That will give them time to learn the camera and how to overcome whatever turns out to be a problem for them.

As an example, they are likely to find that they will want enough memory to hold about ten times as many pictures as they took with film. They will also know how many batteries they need to have with them.

Much better to figure that stuff out at home instead of Paris, London, Kyzyl, ...
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Old Dec 9, 2002, 8:36 AM   #5
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Take a look at "Dave's Picks" for grandparents:

http://www.imaging-resource.com/WB/WB.HTM?view=dp_gp
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Old Dec 9, 2002, 5:50 PM   #6
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Default Re: Oly

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug39
I've used an Olympus D340L for years, and it's extremely easy to use. I'd suggest your folks get one of the lesser expensive Olympus instamatic-style cameras...they use SmartMedia, which isn't as widely used as CF, but it works well enough. And I suggest you get the largest digital film you can afford...you won't regret it. Ideally you want to avoid swapping memory cards...just for convenience' sake. Batteries...I highy recommend rechargables...NiMI ideally.
[quote]Doug,

Thanks for the advice! I am currently leaning towards the Kodak EasyShare LS443, which uses rechargeables. It also comes with 4.2 mps so if my parents take a picture they want framed, I can better edit it in Paintshop Pro. The only problem with this camera will be the max size of 128MB storage mediums, which I will need to buy several, especially if they choose to shoot at the higher pixel level.
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Old Dec 9, 2002, 5:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Salty
If they are traveling out of the country, I would rather use alkaline, they are cheap and I'm sure you can find them anywhere, or just take an 8 pack with you.
I guess they could load up (expensive) on rechargeables and when they get back to their room, keep recharging the batteries.
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Old Dec 9, 2002, 5:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillDrew
Keep in mind an old rule, "Never go on vacation with a new camera." It takes a bit of time to figure out any new camera (digital or chemical) - no one wants to spend their vacation reading a manual. Or figuring out how many batteries are needed. Or looking for somewhere to buy more memory. Or ....

Make the best guess at what camera will fit their needs and get it when they return from vacation. That will give them time to learn the camera and how to overcome whatever turns out to be a problem for them.

As an example, they are likely to find that they will want enough memory to hold about ten times as many pictures as they took with film. They will also know how many batteries they need to have with them.

Much better to figure that stuff out at home instead of Paris, London, Kyzyl, ...
Great advice!

They are going in mid January. Hopefully I can quickly acquire the camera and let them play with it for about a month before they go. I might also have them take their backup P&S camera so if all else fails, they will have an alternative. Thanks again!
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Old Dec 9, 2002, 6:01 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimHunt
Take a look at "Dave's Picks" for grandparents:

http://www.imaging-resource.com/WB/WB.HTM?view=dp_gp
Thanks for the resource, which really addresses the question. I can see that Kodak appears to lead the pack in simplicity. I had narrowed the choices to the HP Photosmart 812 and the Minolta Dimage F100 prior to your tip. Does anybody have any furhter thoughts on the choice between these three cameras?
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Old Dec 9, 2002, 7:43 PM   #10
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Just for the battery issue, I suggest getting a camera that takes standard AAs. They can get a set (or two) of rechargeables and take those along with the charger If they die when they are out and about, I would think getting some AAs would be very easy, allowing them to continue shooting without waiting for the recharger. Obviously, you will need the proper adapters for the charger, but that is easy to take care of. Just order them when you order the charger.

For memory, more is better, especially if they don't have a way to archive the images off. If you go SmartMedia, you are going to find that they don't make very large SM cards (IIRC, 128 MB is the max). Should you get a several smaller or one large?? dpends on the price. Check around and find the sweet spot for prices. It could be cheaper to buy 2 128 MB cards than it is to buy one 256 card. You want to get your cost per megabyte down.
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