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Old May 19, 2007, 1:17 PM   #1
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I've never bought a camera and feel a little lost trying to decide what I want. I think I want a full feature point and shoot. I'd LOVE to have a DSLR but I'm not ready for the whole package yet.

The only digital camera I've had was a kodak easyshare CX6330. It was good while it lasted, but it only lasted a couple years . I'm ready for more options and want to take great photos! I know I want image stabilization(I think that's a given now day?) and more zoom(cx6330 had standard 3x optical). I want to take clear photos inside and out, and only need a basic night setting for just incase. Currently my photos only consist of everyday movement and stills, usually within 50 feet.

I think I have an idea of what I need, but everything goes over my head when I start reading the descriptions. I like the sound of the canon S3IS and sony H7 or H9.

I'll also want to get a really great memory card, and am definitely lost there.

My budget is $500 for everything. Can you help?
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Old May 19, 2007, 2:55 PM   #2
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The superzooms will give you a lot of control for experimenting, have tremendous "reach" with a good zoom lens and they can all take great pictures outside. Inside, they are OK but are trounced by DSLRs with or without flash. It depends how critical you are for indoor pictures. My experience to date is much more limited than many posters on this forum, but I can compare between a good compact, Casio EX-P600, a Sony H5 and an entry level DSLR, a Nikon D40. The Sony H5 is great outside, and gives reasonable pictures inside at up to ISO400 sensitivity, but the later H7 and H9 are reputedley even better and have Lithium Ion batteries, which I prefer to AAs. Canon and Panasonic have similar models with Image Stabilisation. Fuji has superzooms with excellent low light performance but no IS. You need to handle them in a store, and see which feels best and offers the features that you like. The picture below was taken well after sunset with the H5 at ISO400 sensitivity, hand held (exposure time was 0.4 second, so IS must have helped give a reasonable picture).
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Old May 19, 2007, 3:17 PM   #3
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A more typical picture for you is a snapshot below taken on holiday with the H5 south of Adelaide. The Auto mode gives vibrant colours and reliable exposures with the standard matric metering. but other metering and focusing selections can be made in the other program modes.
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Old May 19, 2007, 6:46 PM   #4
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The majority of my photos will probably be inside.

I want a really good quality brand that I dont have to worry about suddenly breaking after only a couple years. 3 people close to me had the cx6330 and around the 2 year mark of daily use they just quit working(something to do with the connection to the power current).

I dont have much exposure to cameras, the availability around here is small- limited to places like walmart, circuit city, and one specialty camera shop that was cleaned out over mother's day so he doesnt have a lot to display... and almost none of the displays at these places have power :O
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Old May 19, 2007, 7:06 PM   #5
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I suggest two superzooms:

1. The Fuji FinePix 6000fd - nice 10.7X optical zoom. Great low light performance. Face detection. Drawbacks - uses xD cards and doesn't have image stabilization.

2. The Canon PowerShot S3IS - very nice 12X optical zoom. Pretty good continuous shooting. Uses cheap SD cards.

Both of these cameras can be bought for well under $350, maybe even $300 if you consider the available rebate offers or get them on sale.



Good luck!
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Old May 19, 2007, 7:10 PM   #6
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the S3 IS is one on my list, the only other on my list right now is the sony H7.

What is an xD? I guess it doesnt matter since I definitely want the stabilization.

Ive heard the sandisk ultraII and extremeIII are good memory cards. I want to get one with really good write time, and Ill get either 1g or 2. I guess I should go post that in the accessories forum when I decide on what camera to get.


BTW, am I looking for a superzoom since I want more than the standard 3x? or even 4x. I dont know what zoom the S2 IS has on it(that is the version my sister has) but I like that zoom, and could go for more as long as quality is good.
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Old May 19, 2007, 7:43 PM   #7
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SDIX, you really need to decide how large a camera you are looking for.You should go to Best Buy or Circuit City or a business supplies storeor Walmart and hold the different types of cameras in your hands. It will help us help you if we had a clearer idea of whatyour parameters were.
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Old May 19, 2007, 7:56 PM   #8
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I have played with them some. Size doesnt really matter but I actually dont want a tiny camera. The S3 IS(or something similar)would be the largest Id be comfortable going with. My sis has the S2 IS and I have handled it and so I have a good feel of the size, its very similar in size to an old film camera I use to have. I do like to have some bulk to hold on to, I cant stand the tiny cell phones I always feel like they are slipping out of my hands :-)I definitely wouldnt want to go any smaller than my cx6330 which is about 4 x 1.5 x 2.5 inches and 7oz or so. does that help?
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Old May 19, 2007, 8:10 PM   #9
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SDIX wrote:
Quote:
I have played with them some. Size doesnt really matter but I actually dont want a tiny camera. The S3 IS(or something similar)would be the largest Id be comfortable going with. My sis has the S2 IS and I have handled it and so I have a good feel of the size, its very similar in size to an old film camera I use to have. I do like to have some bulk to hold on to, I cant stand the tiny cell phones I always feel like they are slipping out of my hands :-)I definitely wouldnt want to go any smaller than my cx6330 which is about 4 x 1.5 x 2.5 inches and 7oz or so. does that help?
Well for $500, you have a lot of choices! I agree that image stabilization is essential. Otherwise I'd recommend a Canon A630 or better, A640. The A710 does well and does have image stabilization. You may alsowant to check out the Sony and Panasonic cameras.


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Old May 19, 2007, 8:41 PM   #10
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what is the difference between image stabilization and optical image stabilization?

So if the majority of the photos I am taking will be inside, doI want to stay away from the "superzoom" cameras?
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