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Old Nov 8, 2009, 11:46 AM   #1
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Default Best camera in low light

I'm looking for a camera in the roughly $500 and under. I have a kodak z612 my husband has a kodak z1012is and both perform poorly. I'm not a professional so buying a DSLR would be wasted on me. I'd never utilize all the features. I shoot indoors a lot, and I need something with really good stability
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Old Nov 8, 2009, 12:25 PM   #2
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cj-

Welcome to the Forum. Thanks for dropping by.

Your title is "Best camera in low light."

To give you a workable and comprehensive answer we need to sort out some of the details.

(1) You mention that you shoot a lot indoors. Is your indoor shooting done using the camera's built-in flash unit? Or are you referring to shooting with just the ambient like found in the photo scene.

(2) Both of the cameras being used in your household are good point and shoot cameras. However, the actual physical size of the imager in either of these two cameras is the source a lot of electronic noise. Likewise, those two cameras are hampered by their inability to use high numerical ISO settings which generate very slow shutter speeds, blurry photos and a lot of grainy electronic noise.

(3) In contrast, the physical size of the imagers, used even on entry level DSLR cameras, which are within your proposed budget, are 15 to 20 times physically larger than the imagers used in point and shoot cameras. Larger imagers, allow you to functionally use higher numerical ISO settings, thus your shutter speeds are higher, and in large measure, blurry photos are eliminated, the increase in image quality is rather amazing.

(4) There are many hobbyist photographers out there using, enjoying, and getting great photos with their DSLR cameras. DSLR cameras are not the sole domain of professional photographers.

(5) If you desire is to stay with a point and shoot digital cameras, the options are fewer but they are available.

So help us out with some more info and we can better address your requirements. I have attached a photo sample from an entry level Sony DSLR without flash. Notice the photo is clear, sharp, and even the action is stopped, a sign of a higher shutter speed.

Have a great day.

Sarah Joyce
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Last edited by mtclimber; Nov 9, 2009 at 11:43 AM.
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Old Nov 9, 2009, 5:19 PM   #3
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Let me know if i'm hijacking this thread, I can post a new thread.

I'm in the same boat as CJ54. My wife wants a nice camera to shoot baby (infant) pictures mostly at home, so its basically indoors.

Questions:
- Does shooting indoors at home qualify as low light conditions?

- Is there any particular specification I should look for in a camera to shoot in low light conditions? Shutter speed?

- Do you have any recommendations on good low-light cameras w/ HD movie capability?

- What do you think of panasonic lumix DMC - ZR1?

thanks, much appreciated.

Last edited by p_and_s_person; Nov 9, 2009 at 5:22 PM.
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Old Nov 9, 2009, 8:39 PM   #4
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Default An Introduction to Bounce Lighting

OK, P and S Person-

Let's begin with a little different approach to the subject. Baby photos in existing light are really not very nice at all. Why you will probably ask? Because home lighting is not even, or smooth at all. It falls in pools of light. The result, photos that you are afraid to post in a Family Albim, and that you would never, no way, Santa Fe, send to the relatives, especially the grandmothers!

So what is the solution? Bounce flash. That keeps the flash out of baby's delicate eyes. It is even. It is smooth. And it reliable and you can replicate it time after time. What is being done is simply this: we ar bouncing light off off a very convenient white ceiling. The light is not direct at all. It is soft, smooth, and flattering.

OK, you say, what does it look like. Well take a good look at the attached photo. That is bounce light.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Nov 9, 2009, 8:49 PM   #5
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OK, P and S Person-

What cameras can handle bounce flash? Well, (1) any camera if it has a hot shoe and you have a external flash. (2) any point and shoot camera if you are willing to equip it with a Slave Flash like the Metz-28 or the DigiSlave-3000.

You see it can be done, but there is some expense involved. But, gosh do those photos look good. Here is a photo I took today using an old Canon G-6 camera that I purchased in late 2003. It has a hot shoe. So I pulled it out, charged the battery and went to work. What do you think?

Sarah Joyce
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Old Nov 9, 2009, 8:59 PM   #6
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I would take a strong look at the Canon G11. It does about as well in low-light or high-iso situations as any p&s. and even better it is fully compatible and holds up well to the Canon series of flashguns.

the 270 ex is pretty small and inexpensive and at least allows bounce flash in landscape orientation. you could go up to the 430 ex ii for full swivel and bounce capabilities, or even pick up a used 430 ex (non-ii).

the metz 36 is only 100$ and offers bounce capabilities and decent output.
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Old Nov 9, 2009, 9:02 PM   #7
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Dustin-
Thanks for the excellent advice. However, I have found that the Metz 36 is a pretty weak flash. It can bounce, but just barely. It was so weak I returned my copy.

All the best.

Sarah Joyce
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