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Old Jun 11, 2007, 1:01 PM   #11
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Nies-

Unfortunately the only small ultrazooms I am familiar with that have IS are from Panasonic: The FZ-8, and the TZ-3.

Sarah
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Old Jun 11, 2007, 1:14 PM   #12
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damage...it really seems i have to go for a lil bigger one.

what do you think about kodak? i looked at the v612 and 712 are they like the fuji s700 ore canon 710?
then i saw a not very famous one...ricoh capilo r6...

it's so hard for me, i don't know a lot! i just know my ixus makes me sick :?

but thx for all your help, you're great!


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Old Jun 11, 2007, 1:43 PM   #13
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Nies07

My two cents worth.

First of all, your Canon has a very limited flash range (it's down to less than 7 feet if you zoom in much, since flash distance will decrease with most subcompact models at longer focal lengths). This is indicated in it's specifications.

Make sure to check out the specs carefully in order to see what that range is on both the wide end (shorter focal lengths/least apparent magnification) and long end (longer focal lengths/most apparent magnification) for models you consider to make sure you're comfortable with what the camera is capable of.

I'd also make sure to read the review conclusion sections for models you're interested in here. That's where Steve discusses things like image quality indoors and outdoors, noise as ISO speeds are increased, flash range, and much more. It's the last page before the sample images in each model's review here.

You are also mentioning things like blur in low light. Well.... a camera must keep the shutter open long enough to expose the image. So, that can result in both blur from camera shake, and blur from subject movement. If you want a better understanding of the relationship between lighting, ISO speed (a.k.a., film speed, a.k.a., asa speed), and aperture (which is representive of how bright the lens is) see this online calculator. This is not unique to digital. So, a good basic photography book from a local library can explain the same concepts:

http://www.robert-barrett.com/photo/...alculator.html

Stabilization can help to some extent with camera shake (but, if shutter speeds are slow enough, you'll still need a tripod, and even a tripod won't help with blur from subject movement).

If you want to take photos in low light light of non-stationary subjects without a flash, that requires a model with higher usable ISO speeds (which is how sensitive a camera is to light), as well as a relatively bright lens. For non-stationary subject, you can keep the ISO speeds set low and use a tripod. Lower ISO speeds keep the noise levels down, and that's the best way to approach images like the sample night shots posted herein.

Although you've received some good advise in this thread, it's usually not a very good idea to post a thread including text mentiong that a camera "sucks", if you're not using it within it's capababilties. You'll just upset members that have that camera model for no good reason.

No camera is perfect. As a general rule, the smaller the camera, the more compromises you'll need to make. Instead of saying "it sucks", you may want to consider that you might not understand it's limitations, and it doesn't mean your needs well.

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Old Jun 11, 2007, 3:07 PM   #14
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Thx for that great explaination JimC!
Even though I didn't understand all of it, it helped me quite a lot!

And btw...maybe I was a little too upset when I started the thread
:GThe Ixus is not that bad... I took many great pictures last year. But I honestly awaited more...outside pics are perfect, but if you're inside it's just really hard ithout flash.

But this obviously comes because I don't have enough know-how in photo-things.

So...if there's any one feeling offended here: SORRY I didn't mean it that way!



"In the end, you helped me a lot, and I will read the conclusions (even if it's not always easy to understand).

And I think for my needs, I'll have to buy a bigger cam right? So that the flash is better. So I think I'll keep my Ixus and buy another one (maybe the kodak), since I firstly was thinking of selling it...





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Old Jun 11, 2007, 3:30 PM   #15
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Nies07 wrote:
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what do you think about kodak? i looked at the v612 and 712 are they like the fuji s700 ore canon 710?
then i saw a not very famous one...ricoh capilo r6...
Do you mean Kodak Z612 and Z712? I can talk to those a bit as an owner of a Z612. Both are 12x IS machines and are probably the lightest/smallest 12x IS machines available though neither would be considered pocket cameras by any stretch of the the imagination. The Z612 is on Steve's Best Camera list and under most circumstances will deliver excellent image quality. I have posted a number of photos in the Kodak forum. Understand that it's not the low light king and will show noise at ISO 400. To my eye the noise at ISO 400 looks a lot like Ektachrome 400 grain. Something of a personal view on whether that abrogates usefulness or not. The Z712 is new to the market and hasn't been independently reviewed yet. The user posted photos I've seen so far look favorable.

If you really meant one of V series cameras (V610, etc.) I have no experience with those. I couldn't find any reviews on the Ricoh.
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Old Jun 11, 2007, 3:31 PM   #16
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Old Jun 11, 2007, 3:41 PM   #17
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I wouldn't look at how large a camera is alone. There are other considerations (getting back to the specs, rated flash range, and more).

It also sounds like you really don't want to use a flash, and taking indoor photos without a flash is very tough for a camera.

In some lighting conditions, even using a high priced DSLR with a very expensive lens may not suffice, unless your subject is stationary and you're using a tripod (or a flash).

Any tool has limitations.

The human eye responds quite well to low light. But, a camera may not (and a typical home interior is low light to most cameras). That's one reason that most models have a flash. ;-)

If you really want to leave the flash off indoors (and I'm a fan of existing light photos), you have to carefully consider the model you choose.

Not a lot of cameras are going to be capable of taking good indoor photos without a flash or tripod of non-stationary subjects (i.e., your typical people photos). That's just a limitation of current technology.

You can help to some extent (smoothly squeeze the shutter button so that you minimize blur from camera shake, time when you take the photos to when you see a pause in subject movement, set ISO speeds to a higher value to increase a camera's sensitivity to light (which increases visible noise), don't zoom in anymore than necessary since most lenses are brighter at their widest (least apparent magnification) settings.

But, in some conditions, you're still going to need that flash. So, I'd look at things like flash range (and the ability to use an external flash if higher quality flash photos are a consideration).

If existing light photos of non-stationary subjects is a high priority, a DSLR with a bright (not your typical kit lens) is a good idea. These models have much higher usable ISO speeds, with brighter available lenses.

There are some models that do better than most non-DSLR models as ISO speeds are increased. Examples would include the litttle F series Fuji cameras (F10, F11, F20, F30, F31fd, F40fd). But, these are smaller cameras that lose a lot of light if you zoom in much. So, they have limitations, too (and even if you don't zoom in any, you may still not get acceptable results in some lighting). Fuji also makes some cameras that have longer focal lengths available (more optical zoom). But, make sure you check with users to see what the camera is capable of. However, that doesn't mean they'll take better photos in other conditions. There are usually tradeoffs.

Again, in some lighting conditions, you'll pretty much need a DSLR with a brighter lens to handle taking photos of people if you can't use a flash. That's just the way it is, due to limitations in current technology.

Any camera choice is a compromise, and the convenience factor comes into the equation (now large/heavy is it). So, you'll need to decide what compromises are acceptable within a given budget, taking things like flash range, usability without a flash, focal range (how much optical zoom), and much more to make a best choice.

Many of the forum members here have more experience with more cameras compared to me, and hopefully, you'll get some great advise if they have a better understanding of the conditions you want to use one in, and what limitations you're willing to accept.

I'm just pointing out that there are pros and cons to any camera, and just because it doesn't meet your desired needs well, doesn't mean that it's not a good camera.


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Old Jun 11, 2007, 8:38 PM   #18
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mtclimber wrote:
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reppans-

Can you share with us which camera you used and a few of the tips and tricks it took to take these beautiful night photos.

Sarah
Sure, be glad to.

The first pix is Zurich taken with the A710 and the Stones concert and Paris Vegas shots were taken with a 2002 3.2mp Canon S230 (US name) or IXUS v3 (international name).

My night shots tips/tricks are embarrassingly simple, but quite foolproof. I actually find it easier to get better night shots, than day shots. Go figure.

- I usually use a garbage can, wall or bench for a tripod (hate carrying bulky stuff and a major reason I settled on the 710).
- I use the self timer to trip the shutter without touching the camera.
- I lock ISO down to 80 or 100.
- Then I pretty much just rely on automatic exposure, or the program mode on the 710, with one important adjustment - exposure compensation.
- Night shots are supposed to be dark so I always set the EV somewhere between -0.67 and -1.67, depending upon how much light is on the subject. So, for well lit subjects (Zurich and Stones pics) EV is -0.67, and for the Paris Vegas shot, with it's more subtle lighting, is set at EV -1.67.
- With the 710's full manual controls, I may use time or aperture priority if I want to blurr motion, or play with depth of field, but I always let the camera's light meter select the other open variable, subject to my negative EV setting.

That's about it.....


Oh and to Nies07 - are you aware of the Canon's "safety zoom" feature? It allows you to get up to 24 times zoom with little loss in image quality, but at a reduced picture size, which may not matter depending upon your desired print sizes. It is effectively an in camera cropping tool.

A couple of safety zoom shots of the moon from the 710 at 24x effective zoom:




Safety zoom:

http://web.canon.jp/imaging/psa710is/fea-2-e.html
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Old Jun 11, 2007, 11:10 PM   #19
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reppanns-

Your photos are terrific! They make the Canon A-710IS look brilliant. Thanks for your tips and tricks, they are very helpful.

Sarah
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Old Jun 12, 2007, 1:48 PM   #20
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Oh yes, I meant the Z612.
I understood Steve in a way, that the z612 is better than the z712 can this be?

After that great samples, i'm thinking about the A710 too.

And thanks for that good explanation! I have nothing against using flash, but if you're in a hall or something, no flash will be far enough...
And the z612 isn't good in that point? I thought because of the image stabilisation it'll be better than my ixus. How is this point about the a710?

Oh oh...this is so hard.
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