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-   -   are old 2 MP cams as good as new ones? (

twitch Oct 12, 2003 7:30 PM

are old 2 MP cams as good as new ones?
Hi there,

I have the option of picking up a brand new 2 MP camera or an older (3 years old) 2 MP camera. Is there THAT much of a difference if I just want to play around with it? The price difference is substanial, which is why I'm inclined to go with the older one. If I decide to upgrade in the near future, at least I'll have some money left over if I buy the older camera.


voxmagna Oct 12, 2003 7:56 PM

It's not just the Mpix that will differentiate. What's the power consumption? AA batts or proprietary, 2 batts or 4? Sensitivity in equivalent ASA? largest f stop? LCD only (thirsty on juice) or additional optical finder. Is memory small Smartmedia and can the older cam take larger memory up to 128Mb? What's the data link - slow serial at 9600 baud or fast USB1?

Just a few things to be thinking about. VOX

Mathilde uP Oct 13, 2003 9:01 AM

Add to that the shutterlag of older cameras. On average that did not improve much last years (grrr), but what used to be a racecar is now beaten by another camera.
My experience with the first model Canon digital Ixus and why I fell out of love with it; In 2000 this was a real hot camera, not just by size but also quality...In 2003 compared to other cameras, colors seems a bit narrow (yellow weakness), if light not optimal picture becomes grainy (even in bright outdoor light). Indeed only iso 100 (very usefull if you live in a northern country) and only manual exposure control.

Another point to take serious if you are refering to a secondhand digital camera is the battery. Rechargable AA or proprietary, you may find they have to be replaced soon. 2 sets of battery of any type has also its costs.

Oct 13, 2003 12:57 PM

It depends
On what model the 3yr old camera is.

DarkThrone Oct 13, 2003 1:00 PM

You have less battery life, that means you also have less playtime with the camera. Then again, if on a budget, the amount you save on the old one can be used for, let's say, accessories such as memory cards and the like.

lg Oct 13, 2003 5:26 PM

Well, your answer is: "It depends!" Are you comparing an 2MP camera that retailed for $1100 several years ago to a $150 new 2MP digicam? Do they both have the same features? Are they made by the same manufacturer? What is the quality of the lens for both cameras you are considering? These are just a few of the questions you should ask in order to answer your question. Provide more info and specifics, and you'll get more specific answers.

Wildman Oct 13, 2003 8:44 PM

lg is absolutely right. There are some 2 or 3 Mp "antiques" (a few years old) that offer fearures that new cameras can't match.

lg LOVES his Oly C-2000UZ ("Uzi") and I won't give up my Canon Pro90. These cameras are out of production. They share a fabulous 38 - 380 mm stabilized lens. You can find them on the Web refurbished or used and beat any new 2 MP camera on the market. They were discontinued because the profit margin on these cameras was too low.

The Pro90 is slow and its low light focusing capability isn't the best, but there's not a camera out there I would take in trade (unless somebody is willing to trade a DSLR with a bunch of lenses. :shock:

twitch Oct 14, 2003 12:37 AM

Well, let's see if I can add some more info...this is a rather convoluted situation:

(all prices are Canadian)

1) I managed to purchase a brand new HP 635. It is, as I say, new in the box and I bought it retail. It was $230. That is a bargain basement price - I'm amazed that I got it at that price. Haven't opened it yet so I can still return it.

2) I have an offer for a Canon A20. With a 32 MB CF, 8 NiMH 1600 batteries, charger and case. $250, which I consider steep considering its age. May be able to talk him down, but not too much more. I consider the 32 MB flash pretty much worthless.

3) I have another offer on a Canon A40 with 128 MB CF, case, 8 NiMh 1800 batteries but no charger. $310, which I consider a little bit high. Tried talking him down, but I think we are at a standstill.

4) And yet one more: Canon S110 with 32 MB CF. $280 which I consider outrageously overpriced.

5) I had a line on a HP 618 for $120 CDN...but I lost out on it. That was the one that I really wanted and the original purpose of this thread.

6) I can get a refurbished A40 for $290 with a full warranty. No memory card, batteries or extras though.

There are a few things to consider:

a) I'm no camera buff. I just want something to play around with that take decent pics. I like the HP 635 because it has the movie capture, but that's not critical.

b) I'm on a budget and need to look at the whole package.
- Memory cards play a big factor in all of this, as they affect package price. I think any memory capacity I buy today is pretty much uselss in about 12-18 months, whether it be CF or SD cards. I prefer a cam with CF cards as they are quite inexpensive. CF cards seem to be about 20-30% cheaper (used). At 2 MP, I'm more than happy with a 64 or 128 MB card. When I sell the cam, the memory card will probably go with it.

- I like built-in battery packs, but that isn't a real concern for me since it all seems to wash in the end.

Thoughts? Thanks!

BillDrew Oct 14, 2003 8:51 AM


Originally Posted by twitch
- I like built-in battery packs, but that isn't a real concern for me since it all seems to wash in the end.

If by that you mean non removable batteries, I would suggest that you avoid those in an old camera. Batteries fail with age/use. Also if you cannot swap batteries, you will not be able to shoot for an hour or more when you run out of power.

In terms of budget, you should figure on having to get a new battery pack for whatever used camera you get. You might not need it, but odds are that you will.

Mike_PEAT Oct 14, 2003 1:12 PM

If you're looking for an old camera, get one that runs on can always buy new, higher capacity AA batteries but you may not always be able to buy a new proprietary battery. Also many times you can buy 2-4 sets of AA batteries for the cost of one proprietary battery.

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