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Old Oct 13, 2006, 8:50 AM   #11
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I believe the longest telephoto lens you get is a 40-150mm, and I think you'll find it's not enough. You're probably still going to want to purchase yet another lens for the shots you mentioned. You'll want at least a 200mm and a 300mm is even better.
Keep in mind that the 150mm on the Olympus is the equivalent of a 300mm on a 35mm film camera. That's a pretty good amount of zoom.


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Old Oct 13, 2006, 8:53 AM   #12
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I am wanting the OPTICAL lens, correct?
Yes, on the point and shoots, ignore what it says about "digital zoom". That has nothing to do with the lens. "Digital zoom" is just doing the same thing you or your camera shop can do after the fact by cropping.


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Old Oct 13, 2006, 8:56 AM   #13
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jeepsr4girlz wrote:
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So far, it looks like I am leaning towards the following:

Canon S3 IS

Fuji S6500fd or S9000
All three are excellent choices. Make sure you check beachcamera.com before you buy elsewhere. Very highly recommended place to do business.

As for printer docks, I wouldn't be a good one to ask. I don't print my own pictures. By the time you buy the photo paper and print cartridges, it can get expensive. I use an on-line service. You up-load your pics to them and they mail you the prints in a few days. It's VERY inexpensive and they are great quality.
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Old Oct 13, 2006, 8:58 AM   #14
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The Panasonic might let you down I think, they're very good cameras, only a little noisy once over the ISO 200...


Canon nor Fuji will let you down I think.

If you feel comfortable with Canon, the S3 IS might be an excellent choice. Great movie mode too.

I still would advise you to go with digital instead of film. Unless for traditional black & white pictures you develope yourself, you can't really see the difference anymore.
And if you can, it'll be in favor of digital.

I don't print myself, I send my photos to a Fuji lab and have them printed there. (loads of sites to do this, again: cheaper than film)

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2006_reviews/s3is.html


But in the end, make your own decision, and go with what you think is best for you
Good luck

TDN


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Old Oct 13, 2006, 9:02 AM   #15
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kenbalbari wrote:
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Keep in mind that the 150mm on the Olympus is the equivalent of a 300mm on a 35mm film camera. That's a pretty good amount of zoom.
I always thought the digital/film conversion factor was more like 1.5. If that's right, then the 150mm would be like 225mm on a film camera.

Either way, from what I've seen, I would still go for a 200mm or 300mm lens for a digital camera if you want to shoot wildlife. The 300mm is like a 450mm film equivalent.
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Old Oct 13, 2006, 9:12 AM   #16
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gadgetnut wrote:
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I always thought the digital/film conversion factor was more like 1.5. If that's right, then the 150mm would be like 225mm on a film camera.
Depends on the camera.

Olympus uses 4/3rds sensors, that have a 2x FOV conversion factor.

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Old Oct 13, 2006, 9:17 AM   #17
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TDN wrote:
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gadgetnut wrote:
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I always thought the digital/film conversion factor was more like 1.5. If that's right, then the 150mm would be like 225mm on a film camera.
Depends on the camera.

Olympus uses 4/3rds sensors, that have a 2x FOV conversion factor.
Ah...I see. I didn't know Olympus used a different size than my Pentax. Thanks.
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Old Oct 13, 2006, 9:35 AM   #18
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Hi Michele,

I've had the Canon S2 IS since last March, and I have no regrets. However, you can't go wrong with the S3. It has everything you're looking for. Sports mode, great for close-ups, 12X optical zoom, excellent battery life with good rechargeables, fine indoor shots. Also, you can put it in auto mode right out of the box and take great pictures. As you feel more comfortable with the camera, you can move into the other modes for better control of your pictures. I love my S2. I took it to Alaska last summer and was thrilled with the results. I'm sure you'd be very happy with the S3.

If you have a lot of pictures to print, you're better off uploading to an on-line service. I also have an HP 4X6 compact printer that makes excellent prints, but it's time-consuming and rather costly for printing a large amount of pictures.

Have fun,

Jeff
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Old Oct 13, 2006, 10:11 AM   #19
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Michele:

The digital superzooms will give you good results in most conditions. They will give you some ability in low light, but you won't get good results in low light action situations. There you would really likely need a DSLR to be able to let in enough light to be able to get a good exposure while also using a fast enough shutter to stop action. So for things like indoor sports, like basketball or gymnastics, for theatre, school plays, or concerts, situations where you have low light and alot of motion, the digital point and shoots tend to be inadequate.

An SLR or DSLR would be capable of a bit better results overall, and would also be better able to handle these more challenging conditions. But, it also has a bit more of a learning curve, and will require some investment in lenses to obtain the full benefits of all of it's additional capabilities.

Since you have not yet taken the time to learn the digital camera you already own, I think you are right in deciding not to spend the money on a DSLR just yet. Especially since most of your pictures will be outdoors, and you didn't really mention any of the areas where digital superzooms would be most likely to come up short.

I think your best choices among the digital cameras are between the Canon S3, the Sony H2 or H5, the Fuji S6000, and the Panasonic FZ7. Here are a few reviews that might help:

http://www.steves-digicams.com/2006_reviews/s3is.html
http://www.steves-digicams.com/2006_reviews/h5.html
http://www.steves-digicams.com/2006_reviews/fz7.html

As far as digital vs. film, you will have to decide which you prefer. Shooting digital, you really have no film cost. So you can shoot hundreds of pictures in a day. You also should be using rechargable batteries in these cameras, so there is no great per picture cost there either, especially if you don't print all of your images. So it is great for shooting lots of pictures and learning by trial and error.

You can also typically store a large amount of photos cheaply on a home computer. And if you wish, you can also learn to edit your own photos. Or you can simply have your camera shop take care of all processing and printing as you do now.

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Old Oct 13, 2006, 12:26 PM   #20
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You all have been so very helpful, I went to a camera shop this morning and I am feeling so overwhelmed. :O(

I was given two recommendations there based on my wants/needs.

1) The Rebel XTi...but would need to buy additional lens to get zoom shots wanted.

2) The Canon S3 IS..easy to use, but can never upgrade.



I went to Wal-Mart and bought the Canon Rebel EOS Digital Rebel XTi kit:

camera body

EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6

It says nothing about DSLR or SLR and neither lens state they have the Image Stabailizer.



Ibought an extra lens. EF75-300mm

f/4-5.6 III

10.1 megapixels

9 point AF

3 frames per second

2.5 lcd

self cleaning sensor unit

0.2 sec starup time

EF lenses

EFS lenses



I just don't know if I made the right decision. Neither lenses says it has the image stabilizer. Not an SLR or DSLR (although I do not even know what that actually means)

I am just confused. I have 30 days to take this back if I do not like it.
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