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Old Mar 16, 2009, 5:20 AM   #1
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Hello everybody,

I realized that the 2 last digital cameras that I bought have been broken because of a mechanical problem with the lens.
Actually, I have 2 children.
I try to keep the camera as close as possible so I can use it very quickly. It means that it is accessible to them, and they can break it quickly.

So I am looking for a camera without "external" lens which will reduce the probability to be broken. Obiously other mechanical problem could happen but at least, it will reduce the probability.

90% of my photos are indoors and are photos of my children.

I would like to get your advices about the best camera that allow me to have:
+ Good indoor pictures (I don't really care aboutoutside picture)
+ rugged compact or at least without an external moving lens
+ At least 3x digital zoom
+ I think a 28mm would be appreciated because of the indoor photos, but not sure (I always had a 28mm so I am not sure if a 35 would be OK)
+ image stabilization (?? actually again I always had this feature but maybe it is not useful for such camera)

I heard about the Olympus 1030sw, but it has no image stabilization. I heard that it is not mandatory because of the small zoom (x3). Is it true?
There are also the olympus 6000 or 8000 but I read very bad reviews. Image quality is very noisy.

What do you think?
Do you know another camera that will make me ahappy with my indoors photos of my childre?

thanks a lot

PS: By the way, it's sad that there is no posibility to search from the camera database with constraints like "robustness", outdoor image quality, indoor image quality, moving lens or not and so on. It could be a very nice feature of this website

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Old Mar 19, 2009, 11:00 PM   #2
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Posts: 835

Hi Webrod... and welcome to Steve's. I'm sorry no one has responded to you yet... sometimes posts can just slip through the cracks.

Your situation doesn't leave you with a lot of choices because you want a camera with a non-extending lens. But I can clearly see why you require such a feature. I can also understand your desire for a so-called "rugged" camera.

First, to answer your question... it is true that image stabilization is not as important at the short of the a camera's zoom range. Sure, it can always be helpful. But for anything up to, say, 140mm it's not going to be critical.

And, for indoor use, I think you are wise to want a lens that zooms out to at least 28mm.

Now, the Olympus 1030SW. This is a camera I really want to like. It is certainly rugged and weatherproof. It looks kind of cool, too. But most of Olympus cameras in this range so get only so-so reviews. Still, it wouldn't be bad if you have other cameras and want to use it specifically on skiing trips and for camping and hiking.

A camera in this category that gets much better reviews is the Pentax Optio W60. Waterproof, non-extending lens and a 28mm wide zoom lens. Here's a review:


Panasonic has just introduced its new Lumix DMC-TS1. This camera also features a 28mm wide zoom lens and a non-extending lens. But it's so new, that I'm not sure it can be found in stores yet. Here's a rundown of its specs:


And there's the new Canon Powershot D10.. also not in stores yet. It seems to promise toughness and has a non-extending lens. But its lens only zooms out to 35mm:


It seems that most of the "rugged" cameras on the market can be outperformed by more traditional cameras with extending lenses. But the Pentax has been called a pretty solid performer in its own right. And Panasonic seems to have hit a new level of image quality over the past year or so - with each new camera getting better than the one it replaces.

But make no mistake, all of the cameras mentioned so far have small 1:2.3 sensors which means they will not be low-noise champions in low light and at high ISOs. But they might be good enough for your needs. What were the last two cameras that you owned before they were broken?
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