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Old Dec 13, 2006, 11:03 AM   #1
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I'd like to get some advise on the best compact camera with the lowest time between shots. Ideally I'd like to spend less than $300. Any ideas?
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Old Dec 13, 2006, 11:34 AM   #2
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I have the Leica C-Lux 1 and it has very minimal shutter lag. The Panasonic FX-01 is basically the same model and can be found for well under $300.
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Old Dec 13, 2006, 5:39 PM   #3
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What you plan to shoot? I think there are lots of p&s which will let you do a burst of 3-4 shots at a time but not more.
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Old Dec 13, 2006, 5:48 PM   #4
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bj,

That could be quite a research project. For one thing, shutter lag and shot to shot times are different...shutter lag is the time it takes from depressing the shutter release until the camera captures the image...shot to shot times include the time it takes for the camera to write the image to the card. These can vary significantly from camera to camera...which is most important to you? If you pre-focus your shots, by depressing the shutter release half-way to focus, before depressing fully, that will shorten your lag times considerably. Shot to shot times are what they are, however, you should try to keep your research within one review site, to ensure consistency. Another thing to consider is shot to shot times when the flash is used...some cams slow down to 8 to 10 seconds between shots when the flash needs to recharge after a long range shot and when batteries become weak.

Here's an example, comparing the Panasonic FX-01 previously mentioned, the Fuji F30 and the Canon A700:

Taken from DPReview (tested all three models) and comparing startup time; pre-focus lag; shot to shot time; and flash recycle time with and without redeye reduction.

FX-01: 1.2; 0.05 (OIS off), 0.1 (OIS on); 2.1; 3.7/5.5.
F30: 1.6; 0.02; 1.6; 2.3/5.0.
A700: 1.5; 0.09/0.05; 1.9; 4.1/5.0.

All three of these cams are reasonable and within your price range. I'm not recommending any of them, because I don't really know what the rest of your criteria is. There are a lot of compact cams out there in your price range. If shot to shot times are all that matter, keep researching until you find the fastest.

Good luck with your search.

the Hun



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Old Dec 13, 2006, 8:13 PM   #5
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Thanks for the clarification. I aminterested in shutter lag.
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Old Dec 13, 2006, 8:43 PM   #6
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Something to be careful of in quickly perusing reviews is that camera manufacturers tend to consider shutter lag to be the time after a half press with a focus lock. Most current cameras are very quick after a half press except for a couple of small Nikons.

You are probably asking about the full press lag that includes focusing.

The times in Steve's conclusions are probably fine for your purposes and he has a more complete list than anyone else of cameras he reviews.

One you might look at is the Canon SD600. Steve's conclusions include:
"Shooting performance was very robust with power up until the first image captured took only 1.3 seconds! Shutter lag, the delay between depressing the shutter button and capturing an image, was almost instantaneous (less than 1/10 of a second) when pre-focused, and only 1/10 of a second including autofocus. In single image drive mode, the shot to shot delay averaged 1.3 seconds without flash, and at intervals of between 1.8 and 3 seconds with flash depending on subject distance. Using the continuous (burst) mode, I was able to capture 10 frames in only 3.8 seconds."
Those are very good times and the price is right: http://www50.shopping.com/xFS?KW=can...meras&FD=0

If you don't use the optical viewfinder the SD630 is a little pricier and has a very nice LCD. Performance is about the same. My preference is for the SD600, but a lot of people don't use the optical viewfinder.

I also like some of the features on the FX01 and F30 the Hun mentioned. The FX01 has optical stabilization and a wide angle lens. The F30 is excellent in low light. Neither have an optical viewfinder. The A700 is a great camera but won't fit in your jeans pocket if that is important to you. The F30 isn't as slim as the SD600 or FX01 but you can get it in a pocket.

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Old Dec 13, 2006, 10:14 PM   #7
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This is the danger when comparing times between different reviewers, and that is why I recommended making comparisons within the same site. One would hope that the same reviewer would use the same equipment and same techniques, thereby ensuring a more accurate comparison. Do you really believe Steve's claim that a $200 P&S has a faster full autofocus shutter lag than a Canon EOS-1D MKII? I don't...maybe it was a typo.

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PROD...S2/1DS2A10.HTM

How about their test of the SD600?

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/SD600/SD600A6.HTM

They claim the full autofocus lag time for the SD600 is 0.39 to 0.57, which is a far cry from 0.1 seconds.

the Hun

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Old Dec 13, 2006, 10:54 PM   #8
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Dave seems to be burning out on his reviews. I hardly check there anymore as everything I'm looking for is usually just a preview. It seems Dave isn't doing all the tests anymore either.

I'm sure Steve can read a stopwatch, but that is a pretty big difference. I couldn't guess which is right. There are factors that can greatly vary the cycle times like whether preview is engaged with some cameras. But the autofocus times aren't that variable for a given focal length except for available light. Maybe Steve did his outdoors with good light and contrast where IR's tests were done indoors to use his sophisticated equipment. It isn't unusual to have the autofocus hunt more indoors.

As far as its being a typo I have seen similar numbers in other reviews by Steve that didn't jibe with Dave's or Simon's/Jeff's results. I wouldn't necessarily say that a little camera can't have full autofocus speeds as good as DSLRs with large lenses to focus. And he did point out it was a slow lens.

If you can't trust the reviewers I guess you have to go into a store and check them out yourself. That would probably be the best bet for bjones029 anyway since he can integrate the speed with other features and prices.


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