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Old Dec 16, 2007, 9:47 PM   #1
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I'm going to Madagascar to serve in the Peace Corps, and I need to purchase a digital camera. I have never bought one before, but I'm competent with electronics.

Here's what I'm looking for:

-Dependable and able to withstand some abuse (I'm not overly-clumsy, but conditions won't be very friendly for fragile electronics)

-Decent quality images, but do not need anything too fancy

-Compact enough to carry around in a daypack or small bag. Football-sized gear is too big

-Capacity to capture video clips

-High storage capacity (or ability to use memory cardsfor storage of lots of media)

-Absolute maximum price - $250, but preferrably $200 or less.

Let me know if there are cameras out there that roughly fit these requirements. I've tried looking quite a bit, but I don't know where to start, or if there are models out there that aren't for sale on certain websites. Thank you in advance for any help you can lend!
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Old Dec 17, 2007, 6:06 AM   #2
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Olympus Stylus 790 SW
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Old Dec 18, 2007, 4:11 PM   #3
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The Olympus Stylus SW cameras win the rugged category as they are rated for a five foot drop. They also can be used underwater (depths vary per model). The downside in my opinion is the picture quality. While the color is good the images are not as sharp as the nondrop-proof Styluses.We usethe standard type Styluses which are dustproof and water-resistant and offer sharper pictures than the SW series. In our organization they are usually carried in cargo type pants pockets in very dusty environments.
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Old Dec 18, 2007, 6:21 PM   #4
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I'd agree with the olympus 790sw as well. It is one of the most ruggesd non D-SLRs that I have heard of. Also make sure you have a way to burn the photos to DVDs as the memory cards fill upor you will need a large hard drive as well for storage. It does no good to get high capacity memory cards if you have no way to store the photos.

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