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Old Aug 3, 2010, 7:53 PM   #1
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Default Need an ultrazoom with great auto shooting

First off, hello to the old forum regulars. It's been a long time.

So, my mom's camera finally broke and she's sent me on a mission to find her ideal camera. Her requirements aren't very strict, but I'm still having some difficulty.

Here's what she wants:

1. Something with a very effective auto mode so she doesn't need to change settings a lot (basically, good auto WB and auto ISO).

2. A decent amount of zoom (10x minimum, reach of 400mm eq. or more) with a good stabilizer.

3. Around $300.

4. AA batteries preferred but not required.

From my own research, the best match I could find was the Fuji S200EXR. It seems like the auto EXR mode(s) may do a better job at capturing a variety of scenes than the auto mode of most other cams, and I think she'd enjoy the SLR-like handling. However, the close to $400 price tag and proprietary battery are drawbacks, and I'm not really certain just how much easier and more effective the auto EXR really is.

Generally she carries her camera along on nature hikes and mostly shoots animals, so reach and stabilization are the most important things for her. Personally I think the best option would be an entry-level DSLR with an ultrazoom lens, a combo I think she would be thrilled with, but she won't consider the $700-800 range. She's also adamant about learning as little as possible about photography, but maybe if there's a camera with easy to access scene modes I could at least get her to use those.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
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Old Aug 3, 2010, 11:37 PM   #2
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Location: Oregon, USA
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Welcome back. The Panasonic FZ-35 should fill the bill nicely, l I think, for your Mom. It does not use AA batteries but, that is optional as you noted. The FZ-35 is a very user friendly camera that is worth consideration.

Sarah Joyce

Last edited by mtclimber; Aug 4, 2010 at 12:04 AM.
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