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Old Mar 26, 2006, 3:55 PM   #1
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I am new to wildlife and landscape photography and am wanting to buy a digital camera. I want one that has great zooming capablity (lens attachment capability preferred, but not required), can handle rugged conditions, takes high quality pics, and is no less than 5 megapixels(preferably 6). I am looking to spend less than $650. I know this is a lot to ask for, but any suggestions would be helpful. Thanks! -Stewart
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Old Mar 26, 2006, 6:13 PM   #2
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That is a tall order. The first cameras that come to mindareeither the Fuji S-9000 or the KM A-200. Both have a 28mm wide angle settings as well as about 7.5X optical zoom for the KM A-200 and almost 9X for the Fuji S-9000 which can handle the wildlife photos.

With KM going out of business on 04/01 I would tend to think that while there will be support for the dSLR cameras, that the support for the KM point and shoot cameras will fall off rather rapidly. Just a thought.

The Fuji S-9000 (S-9500 in Europe) is a nice camera, but its images almost always require some post processing. I know because i own one. This being apparently your first digital camera, you may not want to jump into photo editing software, at the same time that you are learning a new digital camera.

But there are some ideas.

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Old Mar 27, 2006, 2:40 PM   #3
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Kodak P880's 24mm wide angle would be phenomenal for landscapes but its 140mm tele isn't much longer than that of compact pocket cam so cameras with 28mm wide angle would be better compromises.
(zoom is just ratio of longest and shortest focal length, it doesn't tell anything concretic)

These are taken at 28mm.

For 36mm fov crop away ~20% from height and width.

Actually I originally bought 0.8x wide converter for "close ups" of thunderstorms but it works well for other things, effective focal length is ~22.5mm

36mm would be 1/3rd "narrower" while 28mm is slightly over 1/6th narrower.

When it comes to how different tele focal length relates to each others is that doubling focal length doubles "magnification" zooming to area whose sides are half of original, so from same distance object's height doubles in photo when focal length is doubled from 200mm to 400mm when things like resolution stays same.
(difference is same between 100 and 200mm)

Now bad news is that both good wide angle and "super" tele are optically very hard to fit to one lens, especially if there's size limit... Samsung 815 is only cameras which has good wide angle and "super" tele in same and size and weight of it is higher than that of consumer DSLRs with kit lens.

So much would depend on what are the most important features you need in "all in one package" without extra hassle of additional converters.
Myself I take mostly general nature photos, lanscapes and sky phenomenons and 200mm feels quite enough, sure there's occasions with birds and animals (I don't "hunt" those particularly) when longer tele would be better but for me situations when 200mm isn't enough are often such that while 400mm would be better it wouldn't be even remotely good enough.
(best animal/birds photos are taken when you just happen to be close to target by coincidense... if you have camera with you)

auwildlifer wrote:
can handle rugged conditions
In that aspect all digicams are quite similar...
While not as sensitive as bottle of nitroglycerin they don't like hard bumbs either, physical hits to things are always things to avoid, especially sharp corners are thing you wouldn't want to hit camera.

Also it's better to avoid such high humidity when moisture condenses to surfaces and wetting camera in rain. While digital watch can be well water tight to 10 bar static pressure don't count on even the most "weatherproof" consumer priced digicams surviving from swim. (just couple cameras can handle about 1-2 meters underwater)

But if you can protect camera from rain and humidity isn't high enough to condense there shouldn't be much problems, had Minolta DiMage 7i in week long 3400km trip where we got less and more frequent showers in every place we stopped... Totalled 650 shots in that trip, you just have to remember being carefull in pointing that umbrella if you're in "wind tunnel" like place.

mtclimber wrote:
With KM going out of business on 04/01 I would tend to think that while there will be support for the dSLR cameras, that the support for the KM point and shoot cameras will fall off rather rapidly.
Sony is taking over servicing KM cameras, try to remember it now... I wouldn't want to answer to that third time anymore.

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