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Old Jan 22, 2007, 12:59 PM   #1
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Hey guys,

Longtime lurker with a question for the genius' out there. My fiance and I have booked our honeymoon trip to Italy this summer and I want to be able to capture the sights the way we see them not the way my casio exilim sees them... lol. What are your recomendations for a good travelable camera that will capture beautiful, more "wide angle" type picture with out "fish-eye" type distortion. Basicly what I don't want is what I seem to get with most cameras. You're standing at some beautiful vista and you want to capture the moment but the picture you take just doesn't do it justice. It doesn't capture the whole scope of what you are seeing and it's no where near a vivid.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!

-- Chris
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Old Jan 22, 2007, 1:38 PM   #2
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Chris-

You might want to take a look at the Kodak P-880. It sounds like it might be the right camera for you.

MT/Sarah
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Old Jan 22, 2007, 1:47 PM   #3
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Chris,

I'm not familiar with your current camera - which model is it? Knowing that will tell us how wide the lens is on it and what models have a more wide angle view.

But I will also throw this out there - it isn't just a matter of wide angle. More often than not, photos of 'scenic vistas' fail to live up to our expectations not because of camera limitations but because of compositional issues and processing issues. The photos that really stand out do so because they have an interesting composition. And, more often than not, the good shots are planned. Let me give you a 'for instance': if you're taking a scenic shot outdoors, light tends to be most favorable during the first couple hours after sunrise and the last couple before sunset (and yes, some fabulous photos before sunrise and after sunset). But, the worst lighting is the middle part of the day - very often when you are out site seeing. So, no matter how wide the lens is, the harsh light of a mid day sun will ruin many landscape shots.

Architectural shots are greatly aided by shadows and angles

So, better images can be gotten by either planning activities so they coincide with being at these scenic places during ideal lighting times or if your schedule allows, revisting a location you found during midday on a subsequent day during early morning or before duskwhen the lighting is better for photography.

In both cases, post processing your photos to add contrast/saturation and adjusting levels will improve the overal image you get.

Just a couple of examples. Not trying to dissuade you from a new camera as it might indeed help especially if your current lens isn't very wide. Just giving you some other things to think about that will contribute even more to the overall quality than a wide angle lens.
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Old Jan 22, 2007, 2:23 PM   #4
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Wow, thanks for your quick detailed responses.

The model I curently have is the Casio Exilim EX-Z40 if that helps. On your suggestion I looked at the p-880 so thanks for the recomendation. The point about the lighting is a good one. It can be a huge factor in the feel of a photo and can aide in inhancing depth-of-field and detail that might otherwise not bee seen. I also didn't consider the easy remedy of Photoshop. Also a great way to enhance a photo.

My worry is that we are going to spend this money and go to these places on our honeymoon that we are going to want to share with others and remember for the rest of our lives, and I want to make sure that we can capture the beauty and scope of what we see as best as possible. Make the camera see what our eyes see.

Or at least as close to our eyes as possible while still in a sanity saving price range.
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Old Jan 22, 2007, 8:25 PM   #5
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For non-DSLR's, I recommend as did Sarah, the P880, as well as the Fuji S6000fd. Neither of these is small. However, both have decent zoom ranges. The Fuji is good in low light without flash.

Whatever you get, you might want to buy some panoramic stitching software.
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Old Jan 22, 2007, 8:27 PM   #6
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I'm still looking at the P-880 by Kodak that was suggested above and I'll read up on the Fuji as well. the Kodak is definately in the price range I was hoping for (not more than $400) but I have read mixed reviews. One stated that it produced great image quality and a few others said the quaility left a bit to be desired. I love the wide angle with very little to no distortion and 8mp is great. Any other suggestions for a camera in this price range with the above specs?? Any digital SLR's in that price range?

I want to be able to take great landscape and travel shots of scenic areas with great image quality and a wide angle with little to no distortion.

Also does anyone know what the lens is like on my excilim mentioned above. I'm curious to see what kind of step up I'd be making, I'm a newbie when it comes to the technical specs.
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Old Jan 23, 2007, 11:38 AM   #7
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Choop-

You will find many quite excellent photos posted from the Kodak P-880 over on the Kodak Forum at www.dpreview.com. The P-880 will give you the biggest bang for the buck and be distortion free.

Beyond that you can look at a refurbished Nikon 8400 at $(US) 499. However, you are then right up against the consumer level DSLR cameras. However, please keep in mind that a DSLR camera's expense goes well beyond just the camera and the kit lens. You are going to have to buy that wide angle lens as well.

MT/Sarah
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Old Jan 23, 2007, 3:30 PM   #8
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The low-light fuji's would be great for indoor shots - in Italy there are so many places where a camera is allowed with no flash. However, you can always buy books for that.

I went there on a tour so a big camera was no big deal. Think portable: the canons and sonys will do very well for you as most of your shots don't have to be wide-angle. On that note, the Canon A-series or SD630 (good price) or SD800 (wide-angle) would work well. The Sony T-series are easy to carry, and the W's are quite vibrant.

In any case you can't really go too wrong with the above. Make sure you have spare batteries!
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Old Jan 23, 2007, 4:33 PM   #9
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Thanks for that review and link, I think you have sold me on the P-880. Anyone know of any good deals on the camera and/or where I might be able to return it if I'm not a fan?

Not that I don't trust you guys. :-)

the only one I've found so far is here: http://www.beachcamera.com/shop/prod...amp;sku=KDP880
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Old Jan 23, 2007, 5:06 PM   #10
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Have fun with your new camera when you've purchased it - will you take your Exilim as a backup and for the wife to use! We have two Exilims and I've increased the Saturation setting on the Record menu on both to equal the colour we got with our old P&S.

With regard to capturing the "whole scene" have you tried making a panorama from several overlapping shots - a program called Panorama Maker from ArcSoft is incredibly easy to use and give good results. The panorama below comprises several vertical overlapping shots through a window at the top of Q1, 78 storeys high in Surfers Paradise, Australia.


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