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Old Mar 13, 2007, 4:26 PM   #1
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Hi,

I'm new to digital photography, but have a technical background in computers and film cameras. My daughter gave me her old Canon A400 which has a 3.2 megapixel CCD.

I was excited about it until I tried to take a sequence of action shots and found out it would only trip the shutter when IT was ready. Consequently I missed most of the shots, and got pictures that were, well...not uploaded to the computer.

So, is there a low end digital camera somebody would like to recommend that has either minimal, or preferably, NO shutter delay. I'm not really interested in resolution; I'm not trying to take professional photos but I'd like to get some shots of my grandkids when they're playing and not end up with empty pictures of grass.

Thanks,

John

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Old Mar 13, 2007, 7:08 PM   #2
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This might be a moot point, but digital point and shoots have to do the metering and autofocusing at once if you suddenly depress the shutter button, which causes that shutter lag. However, if you half-depress the shutter button, it will meter and focus, but wait for you to fully depress to actually expose the image. From my experience with Canon P&S cameras (S1 IS, S400), you can get pretty good response by doing the half-depress, then full depress. Usually for me it's almost spot on right as I depress the shutter fully.

I know I didn't directly answer your question, but I just wanted to make sure you were aware of this issue.
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Old Mar 13, 2007, 7:57 PM   #3
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John,

You describe two fundamental digicam faults in your post...cycle time (or shot to shot time)..."I tried to take a sequence of action shots and found out it would only trip the shutter when IT was ready." And shutter lag..."...I'd like to get some shots of my grandkids when they're playing and not end up with empty pictures of grass."

Then, you asked for the impossible..."So, is there a low end digital camera somebody would like to recommend that has either minimal, or preferably, NO shutter delay. "

Low end cameras are low end for a reason. No digicams have a zero shutter lag. The ones that have the shortest lag time are the DSLR's. They will cost you anywhere from $600 to several thousand dollars. The cameras on the opposite end of the spectrum, the entry level point and shoots, usually perform quite poorly in that area.

Give us a budget and the type of pics you need to capture (and where), and maybe we can give you some guidance. Will you be taking most of your pics outside in bright sunlight? Indoors in available light? School gynasiums and auditoriums?

By the way...were you pre-focusing your cam like illuminati suggested?

the Hun

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Old Mar 14, 2007, 12:49 PM   #4
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Well, thanks for your help, but I really don't want to spend $600 or more for a digital camera that will do what a low end film camera will do. I like the convenience of digital photography, esp the ability to upload the shots on my computer and ship them off to Walgreens.

Guess I'll have to wait until the technology catches up.
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Old Mar 14, 2007, 4:09 PM   #5
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Waiting until technology catches up means that your grandkids will be grown. Steve's reviews do actually test shutter lag. I'd suggest you read the reviews on the 5 to 6 MP cameras and look specifically the boot time, the shutter lag and time between shots. Select the best 2 or 3 and review the rest of the features and ask for forum opinions on those.
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Old Mar 14, 2007, 5:09 PM   #6
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You probably won't find No shutter delay but in your search make note of which models offer continuous shooting mode; that might be the next best thing.
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