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Old Apr 4, 2007, 11:02 AM   #1
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I did scroll through several pages of posts, but nothing seems to fit quite the scenario I'm living.

I'm a tech savvy mom of three, ages 5, 2 and newborn, and I enjoy taking photos of the kids. Granted, I also enjoy taking photos of things like my garden, weather, our pets, and the sights if we go on vacation, but my primary focus is the kids. And more often than not, we're inside the house when cute things are happening. My family room and basement are the centers of activity, lit with incandescent lamps, so the lighting isn't great.

I've been through a string of cameras in the last 15 years, simple film and digital P&S. My past digital cameras were a Kodak DX* from 2001 (can't remember the model, it was perfect until I lost it), a Nikon CP4300, and I now have a Canon A520. If I could have still gotten the Kodak when I initially lost it, I would have, the indoor pictures were fantastic compared to the Nikon or the Canon.

Gripes with the Nikon and Canon are the same - they take amazing outdoor shots (Canon gets the edge though) but they don't do well inside. Lots of grainy pictures, slow AF, slow start-up, slow flash recharge, poor red-eye reduction, and after a year or so, they start flaking out and generally slowing down and performance degrades. Initially the Canon was a lot better than the Nikon, but with time it's become more problematic.

While I don't mind using software to "fix" pictures, I don't have the time to go and mess with them, considering I normally take 50-80 pictures a month and work a more-than-full-time job. I prefer the camera to do the work, leaving me minimal tweaking.

So on that note... I'm looking for a camera that does well in less than adequate lighting, I don't mind using a flash if it doesn't overexpose the faces. Kids will be kids, they don't sit still long, so I need something that's going to take the picture quickly after I've focused and then recover quickly in case I missed the good stuff. I also want good image quality outdoors. And it's really about the camera, it doesn't have to be purse-sized, most of my pictures are taken at home anyway. Unfortunately I also haven't had time to figure out how to get the most out of the manual settings on my cameras, but I do understand some of the basics of manual shooting and wouldn't mind spending more of my maternity leave learning.

I've read lots of reviews about the Fuji F30, several Canon P&S as well as the XT and XTi, but it's become confusing. My budget isn't bad ($300 - 550), but I am afraid I can't do much in the way of DSLRs. I can buy the body just fine, it's the investment in lenses and a flash that causes me some pain.

I'd love to hear from the forum, I've seen some very knowledgeable posters who've given great advice to people like myself struggling through this decision.


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Old Apr 4, 2007, 12:43 PM   #2
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This is not first hand knowledge, I would like to share with you that I have a friend who is a kindergarten teacher and she takes lots of photos in her classroom with a Kodak C-745. The results are surprisingly good.

I also have another friend with two small children and she uses a Nikon D-40 with the very small SB-400 flash and her pictures are great. My children are all grown up now so I don't have willing subjects to experiment with for some sample photos.

So those two suggestions are sort of at opposite ends of the price spectrum, but the users are happy.

Perhaps that might help.

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