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Old Jun 7, 2010, 1:17 PM   #1
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Default UltraCompact but which.. TX7-TX5,IXUS210/SD3500,F70EXR

Hi there I'm looking for some advice on buying an ultra compact camera. I already own a DSRL (Nikon D90) but I can't drag it around every day. Especially not when going to a bar or club. I need a small camera which i can slip in my pocket and can use to snap a quick creative picture.

While searching for a compact camera my criteria are the following:
- As good as possible image quality (for a compact)
- Wide angle lens
- Excellent low light performance while holding in hand
- Anti shake
- HD Video (with reasonable sound)
- As slim as possible, it needs to fit in the pocket of a trouser

Following my needs I quickly noticed such a camera was not going to be cheap. I have filtered down my options to a number of cameras but I can't make up my mind!

I'm considering:
Sony TX7 or TX5 (not much difference)
Canon IXUS210 / SD3500
Fujifilm F70 EXR

The sony TX7 seems to offer the best performance but also comes with a high price tag (at this moment 325 euro). The TX5 is 279 euro.
The canon IXUS 210 also seems to be a good performer but not as good as the TX7? and not that good in low light? It costs less though at 257 euro.
The Fujifilm F70, from what I read, also performs well and has 10x optical zoom. It only costs costs 155 euro.


Can anyone offer some additional advice?
Other models I should consider are also welcome!
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Old Jun 7, 2010, 2:10 PM   #2
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korna-

Referring to your list: if you don't mind make many small adjustments, the F-70 EXR has the highest ISO capability other than that from your list the sony TX-7 is also a possibility.

However, the camera with the Best Image Quality/High ISO Ability is the canon S-90, which is perhaps even smaller and more pocket-able.

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Old Jun 7, 2010, 3:36 PM   #3
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The Fuji F70EXR is the best camera of the bunch but it doesn't do HD video. I'd say IQ for the Sony cams are "above average" so out of the cams you listed, I think it's an easy choice - TX7. Certainly I think there are better cams than what you've listed but I'm sure you have your reasons for narrowing it down to these.
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Old Jun 7, 2010, 8:45 PM   #4
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I have a friend with the TX5 who feels that the touch screen is not responsive enough. She dislikes have to touch and hold to get the menu to take action.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 4:56 AM   #5
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Thanks for your replies

I love the Canon S90 but I'm afraid its too thick. Its dimensions are 3.94 x 2.30 x 1.22 in./100.0 x 58.4 x 30.9mm. My telephone is 0.79in/20mm thick and I think it's already too much.
Why do you think it is more pocket-able? Glad to hear the opinion of an owner


I don't mind making small adjustments as long as the controls allow easy access. But I guess Ill have to read into that

The touch interface of the TX7/TX5 does worry me but I've read many good reviews on them. I guess it is a matter of getting used to it.

To be honest I have more cameras on my list but sometimes you just gotta make a choice...

Last edited by korna; Jun 8, 2010 at 4:59 AM.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 6:01 AM   #6
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After reading a bit in the Fuji forum I'll drop the F70 from my list.
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Old Jun 8, 2010, 10:19 AM   #7
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Korna-

You might want to look at the new Canon SD-4000, which is designed specifically for for it smallness and low light shooting ability. It is thinner than the S-90, but still a tad thicker than your cell phone.

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Old Jun 9, 2010, 11:58 AM   #8
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I have visited the nearest photography store to have a closer look at the cameras. The S90 is definitely too big. The Panasonic ZX3/ZR3 however is also an interesting camera. It is much more bulky than the Sony TX7 however the main part of the body is not "that large". Only the hand grip and lens stick out from the body. I'de say it is pocketable.

The Canon SD4000 is also a nice looking camera but it is almost as thick as the ZX3/ZR3 (0.1in/2.4mm). The reviews of the SD4000 are so far good. The video and sound quality is amazing for a compact as far I can tell. The video quality of the TX7 in daylight is more sharp and looks very good at 1080i but in dark ambients I think it performs less. The sounds quality of the TX7 is disappointing (look at the club sample). The ZR3/ZX3 is somewhere in between.
Maybe the TX7 sound is distorted because the club music was too loud but still overall the club sample looks bad. I think the TX5 has a similar sound problem.

TX7 in a club, fireworks
TX7 daylight
TX5 concert

SD4000 in a club
SD4000 daylight

ZR3/ZX3 live DJ, at concert
ZR3/ZX3 daylight


The SD4000 is still very expensive (319 euro). :/

Sarah Joyce I've seen you own a ZR1. Do you why the ZR3 is considered less good than the ZR1?



Quote:
Comments from the TX7 club sample:
By junkfoodinc: The first real "inclub" test of the new Sony Cybershot DSC-TX7 at Tresor Berlin! As you can see at very low light the picture is ok, but the sound is as much as ovendriven as possible! Thats because of the heavy bass inside this club! The cam doesn't arrange the noise!

Last edited by korna; Jun 9, 2010 at 12:03 PM. Reason: added comment from youtube vid
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Old Jun 9, 2010, 4:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by korna View Post
The Canon SD4000 is also a nice looking camera but it is almost as thick as the ZX3/ZR3 (0.1in/2.4mm). The reviews of the SD4000 are so far good. The video and sound quality is amazing for a compact as far I can tell. The video quality of the TX7 in daylight is more sharp and looks very good at 1080i but in dark ambients I think it performs less. The sounds quality of the TX7 is disappointing (look at the club sample). The ZR3/ZX3 is somewhere in between.
Maybe the TX7 sound is distorted because the club music was too loud but still overall the club sample looks bad. I think the TX5 has a similar sound problem.
Yes the Panasonic cameras are better in low-light than the Sony cameras. In all honesty though, they all suck in low-light. With a sensor that small, you simply cannot get a good video in low-light. Even $1000 consumer camcorders with larger CMOS sensors perform poorly in low-light.

The sound on the Panasonic ZS7, for example, is far better than the HX5V or TX5/TX7. I am not sure how the ZR series cameras compare.
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Old Aug 18, 2010, 5:16 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by korna View Post
Hi there I'm looking for some advice on buying an ultra compact camera. I already own a DSRL (Nikon D90) but I can't drag it around every day. Especially not when going to a bar or club. I need a small camera which i can slip in my pocket and can use to snap a quick creative picture.

While searching for a compact camera my criteria are the following:
- As good as possible image quality (for a compact)
- Wide angle lens
- Excellent low light performance while holding in hand
- Anti shake
- HD Video (with reasonable sound)
- As slim as possible, it needs to fit in the pocket of a trouser
This sounds like the Canon SD4000/Ixus 300 HS. I recently purchased one, and I, too, considered the Sony TX5 and TX7. At the moment I can't really remember why I went with the Canon. It might have been the fast unlimited burst mode (up to 3-4 full-size pics/sec in good light). Not sure how the Sonys do there.

Initially I found myself somewhat disappointed in the pictures from the SD4000/300HS on the lowest ISO setting compared to my old Canon compact camera (the new Canon is simply superior on higher ISOs, hands down. The old one doesn't even come close to compete in low light conditions). When viewing the images normally they looked great, but my old camera seemed to show more details when zoomed in to 100%.

But after using the SD4000/300HS some more, I am growing to like it more and more. It might be because I am not comparing images at 100% directly anymore, but it doesn't seem as bad as I first thought. And if you don't need images to be perfectly sharp at 100% zoom (not that they are incredibly blurry, mind you), I think the SD4000/300HS might fit your needs pretty well.

Edit: It seems that I just replied to a thread that's more than two months old... Oh well
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