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Old Jul 9, 2009, 3:01 PM   #1
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Default Help deciding

I've narrowed it down to the Canon SD970 IS or theCanon SX200 IS. We do a lot of boating and take a lot of action type shots like people tubing or wakeboarding behind the boat. Which camera should I choose between these two or is there another I should consider that is in this price range. One hand operation is a big bonus.
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 3:18 PM   #2
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Have you considered a waterproof camera to help prevent damage in tough conditions (especially if it's salt water)

Pentax just announced a new model you may want to take a look at:


I'd also take a look at models like the Canon PowerShot D10 and Pentax Optio W60
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Old Jul 9, 2009, 4:07 PM   #3
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The SX200 is better simply because it has more telephoto. A camera with a viewfinder would be even better yet. There are a number of SLR-like models for around the same price as these Canons. And there is no particular reason to limit your shopping to the Canon brand. I would not count on one-hand operation working out well on a bouncing boat.

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Old Jul 10, 2009, 7:46 AM   #4
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What would be an example of SLR type camera? I was hoping to stay somewhat small so that we did not have to carry a separate bag. The camera will be used just as much in regular circumstances as on the boat. We currently have a Powershot S50 that is on it's last leg. So i am looking at a replacement. I agree that more telephoto is good.
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Old Jul 10, 2009, 8:30 AM   #5
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I would definitely look into a waterproof camera. Constant exposure to mist and spray will ruin any non-waterproof camera eventually.

Canon makes a wonderful waterproof camera, the D10. Other good ones are made by Panasonic, the TS1, and by Pentax, the W60 or W80.
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Old Jul 10, 2009, 8:36 AM   #6
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I have a couple of boats and spend a lot of time on mine. I have never bought a waterproof camera for the boat. Even salt spray hasn’t seemed to hurt any of them. They do get a cleaning after they have been boating.

The only concession I have made for the boat is that I once bought a silver rather than black model because the black ones got hot in the Florida sun. I had to buy an eye cup to defeat reflections and have since bought only black cameras. With a small LCD-only camera the reflections from a silver camera can exacerbate the light problems unless the back is black.

If your boat is an open runabout, a LCD-only camera can be a problem in bright sun. If you can get under the bimini it isn’t so bad, but with the sun a little lower it becomes a problem again. The suggestion to try finding one with a viewfinder is a good one. Unfortunately there aren’t very many available.

In smooth water with bright sun and a relatively wide angle you can shoot one handed - I don't see one compact much better than another in that regard. I’ve trained myself to always put the wrist strap on when I pick up the camera. I hold the camera with both hands, but stuff can happen running at speed in a boat.

You might have a look at this: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/q209grouplongzoom/ The recommended ZS3 and ZS1 are nice cameras, but the ZS3 is selling at full price when you can find one. The ZS1 is a good alternative if you aren’t into stereo HD movies. Both are a little smaller than the Canon and will fit OK in jeans pockets.

My current boat camera is a Panasonic TZ5. I got it cheap a year ago and they are still cheap. The last I looked Abe’s has one for $212 delivered. If I hit a big wave and haven’t put the camera back in my belt pouch it isn’t the end of the world. Other than the ZS3 it probably has the best LCD available. 3 inches at 460k. It takes HD movies and has a 10X zoom. Without a viewfinder it can be difficult in bright sunlight. I shoot a little wider than the photo calls for and crop when I can’t see the LCD well. I think it has a particularly good LCD for sun, but none of them are really good for action shots in bright sunlight IMO.

Last edited by slipe; Jul 10, 2009 at 8:40 AM.
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