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Old May 10, 2007, 5:38 PM   #1
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Okay. I have a C330 Kodak Easyshare right now. I have a 6 month old baby boy and in pretty much every picture I take of him and my husband, they have red eye (they both have blue eyes). I am wanting to purchase a new camera that will help a lot with the red eye. I will mainly be taking pictures of my son and family and maybe some landscape pictures or animal pictures as I am interested in taking pictures like this. I do not want to spend over 1000 on a camera because I am very much a novice in the photography world. And it would not do me any good at all to purchase a really expensive camera if I can not learn how to use it. I would like to learn some, but I really need to know which camera would be a good purchase for me? Do I need a digital camera DSLR or should I go with a point and shoot digital? I really like the digital cameras but should I go with a film camera. I have been hearing really good reviews on the canon rebel XT and XTI but what really is the difference in them. I have heard about the canon SD100 or something like that. What is a good camera for me, since I know nothing about cameras and would like to learn some.



Thanks,

Jessica
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Old May 10, 2007, 6:10 PM   #2
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Red eye is the nature of P&S cameras. In order to get away from this, you need to get the flash as far away from the lens as possible, preferrably bounced off a side wall or ceiling, and best of all, right off the camera. That pretty much means a dSLR and external flash. You could do that with a Pentax K100D and AF-360FGZ flash for less than but close to $1000.

You could also look at a used Canon Rebel. They tend to hold their value pretty well but I've seen the odd decent used deal. If you want to go Canon, this may be the way to go.

If you don't mind experimenting a bit, you might try bouncing the flash with the camera you have. This can be done by taping a small reflector made out tinfoil and/or cardboard in front of the flash. It should be white or silver. The goal is to deflect the flash toward the ceiling so it can bounce off and light the scene from above.

You may find the solution to your red eye issues is as close as your kitchen cupboard.

Good luck.
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Old May 10, 2007, 6:18 PM   #3
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Well, I had been looking at the Canon Rebel XTI for about 750 or something and maybe adding a flash on later. Do you think I need to invest in a zoom lens or is the kit lens pretty good? Which of the 2 that you mentioned do you think is a better camera? I thought about trying to find me a camera on ebay and they offer some canon rebel xt and xti with all kinds of accessories included. Does it matter that some of those accessories are not the brand name canon? I really appreciate your help. I will try to do that with my camera that I have. So a DSLR camera will help with the red eye without having to tape something to it? Also, I want to be able to take the picture without having to wait for it. My camera now takes the picture so slow that the target has usually moved by the time I get the picture taken.

Thanks

Jess
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Old May 10, 2007, 10:12 PM   #4
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If you're looking for an excuse to buy a DSLR, fine. Just be aware of the following:

1. Until you buy an external flash the DSLR won't do a lick better than what you're using now.

2. In spite of claims to the contrary the red-eye reduction mode of the flash on P&S cameras does work, in my experience. If you listen to some people the reduction mode pre-flash causessubject to blink, close their eyes, turn away, warts and puts grey hair on their pets. I've experienced none of that. Have you tried the red-eye reduction mode on your C333?

3. Several of the better current generation P&S cameras also offer quick, simple in-camera editing to post process red-eye out even before you download the photos.

4. The Kodak P850, P880, P712, Canon G7, S5IS and probaly a few other advanced P&S camers will also take external flash.

Virtually all the "kit" lenses for DSLRs are zoom lenses. A zoom lens simply means that you can vary the focal length. If you really asking if you need a telephoto focal length lens the answer is probably not until your children start playing sports.
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Old May 11, 2007, 8:05 AM   #5
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Well, thanks for the information. So you really don't think that I need to invest in a SLR camera for the things that I plan on doing with my camera. Is there a point and shoot that takes fairly quick photos (since they will be of a child). What is the best point and shoot camera to look into then? Maybe one that has the external flash add on that you talked about? I even heard about some kind of flash diffuser (bouncer) that I could buy. Do you know of any point and shoot camera that maybe one would fit on?

Thanks,

Jessica
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Old May 11, 2007, 8:06 AM   #6
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Oh, and yes, I did try that red eye reduction flash on my camera but it really does not help much. Maybe my camera is not that great of a camera or something? Thanks for all the help.

Jess
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Old May 11, 2007, 11:25 AM   #7
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The cause of red-eye is having the flash too close to the optical axis of the taking lens. That is the light from the flash is entering the subject's eyes, reflecting off the retina and being picked up by the taking lens. Moving the flash away from the axis of the taking lens moves the retinal refection away from the lens. Any diffuser that does not move the flash away from the lens will not help. The red-eye reduction flash mode the flash does a pre-flash causing the subject's irises to close down reducing the amount of light entering the eyes and also leaving the eyes. The Kodak C875, C763 and C742 adddigital image processing that detects the presence of the retinal reflection in the image and reduces the intensity.

The Kodak P880 and P712 have a hot shoe flash mount that accepts the P20 external flash. The design of the P20 moves the flash tube several inches above the axis of the lens and this is often enough to eliminate red-eye. If not the flash head can be tilted up to bounce the flash off the ceiling which will absolutely eliminate red-eye. There is an intermediate bounce option as well where the flash head is tilted to about a 45[suP]o [/suP]and a reflector is attached to the top of the flash head. There are commercial versions but it can be easily constructed with white cardboard (as with a new shirt) and a rubber band.

The Canon Powershot G7 also has a hot shoe which accepts the following Canon flashes,220EX, 430EX, 580EX, MR-14EX and MT-24EX are said to be compatible.

On the subject of shutter lag and rapid succession of shots. Outdoors a DSLR will be faster than a P&S but the P&S cameras a steadily improving. Indoor w/flash the main slowdown on repeat shots will be the flash, not the camera. No hot shoe flash has enough of a battery to be considered really fast. The specification you want to look at is recycle time.

I'm a little surprised that the flash red-eye mode on your C333 doesn't work very well even though it's not a current generation camera. I have a much older DC5000 and it seems work well with it as it does on my current Z612. However I haven't photo'd children younger than 5 in several years and I photo adults mostly now. One action that can reduce red-eye that has nothing to do with a camera is to raise the lighting level in the room which also causes irises to close down.
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Old May 11, 2007, 11:50 AM   #8
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A word on diffusers/reflector that attach to the flash.

About ten years ago one of the photo mags did a test and side by side comparison on all the diffusers/reflectors on the market at the time (nothing really new out there). As well as a few common home made ones. What they found was… The best result came from using an old trick that I had been doing for years and it doesn't cost nearly as much. Tie a white handkerchief around the flash head.


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Old May 11, 2007, 12:31 PM   #9
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I don't think that I could tie a white handkerchief around my flash, because it would cover my camera up (Kodak C330). It don't have a pop up flash or anything.

So, in everyone's opinion, which camera and type of camera would suit me best with help with the red eye problem, and to be able to snap pictures of my squirming 6 month old baby fast enough, and with really good quality pictures (my camera right now is not that great with picture quality and ends up with blurry pictures a lot of times)? I would like to have a camera that will take very good quality pictures and maybe that I would be able to keep and adjust to as my son gets older and more active in things.

Thanks ahead for all the help. You all have been great.

Jessica
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Old May 11, 2007, 1:04 PM   #10
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tjsnaps wrote:
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Tie a white handkerchief around the flash head.
This works only if the flash head is far enough removed from the lens axis to begin with in which case red-eye isn't an issue anyway.

jessicawc: Are you trying to get us to make the buying descision for you? I was trying to give you enough information to make an informed descision on your own. I'll narrow it down to three: Canon G7 with whichever Canon Speedlite of the ones mentioned is the tallest; the Kodak C875 and use the red-eye reduction mode; and finally the Kodak Z612 again using the red-eye flash mode. Why is the last one one the list when I haven't mentioned it before? Simply because I have never had red-eye occur with mine when I've used that mode.
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