Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > What Camera Should I Buy?

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jul 21, 2010, 11:25 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 14
Default Best compact camera for around $400???

Hi everyone. I have been lurking for a few days reading and reading and reading. I'm really looking for something that probably doesn't exist, but I'd settle for something close I will be using the camera for family events/vacations etc. So the camera has to be good all around.

I'm looking for the following in a camera:
1) Great pictures, including low light
2) Excellent battery life
3) little to no lag.
4) User friendly. My wife will also be using the camera, shes not the most tech savvy
5) My budget is $400.
6) Finally size does matter, the smaller the better....I'm guessing compact size is idea, I can not lug around any of the larger SLR cameras

I've looked at the Canon S90 the SD 4000 and the Panasonic Z5s and Z7s. The Sony DSC-WX1 was PCworlds #1 choice for this catagory....but I havnt heard much about it here. Anyhow I'm totally burnt out(info overload), and appreciate any suggestions

Thank You in advance.

Last edited by CarbineKid; Jul 22, 2010 at 7:07 AM.
CarbineKid is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Jul 21, 2010, 11:35 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

great low light means shot zoom.

The best in the most compact point and shoot is the canon s90, sensor is 1/1.63. Very good image quality and low light sensor.

Follow by the canon sd4000, just as small but not quite as good in low light.

Not much you can do about shutter lag with point and shoot, they are all to slow for sudden photo ops.

The ZS are good in good light, but are not as good when the light fades. But the have good 12x zooms.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.

Last edited by shoturtle; Jul 21, 2010 at 11:57 PM.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 21, 2010, 11:42 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

If you want to move up in size a bit,

The new samsung ex1 has a 1.8 lens and a 1/1.7 sensor, but a short zoom 3x

The new panasonic LX5 has a F2 lens and a 1/1.63 sensor and a bit longer zoom at 3.8x and you get HD video.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 6:44 AM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 14
Default

Thanks for the suggestions. I should have mentioned I have a really good camcorder, so Im not to worried about getting vids. I'm pretty much looking to buy a user friendly camera that will serve me well in indoors and out, during the day and at night. The more Irad the more I like the DMC-ZS5K....but Im still open to suggestions

Last edited by CarbineKid; Jul 22, 2010 at 7:32 AM.
CarbineKid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 9:05 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

The ZS are not great out of flash range. So it might not be the best choice if you want a good low light camera.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 9:16 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
mtclimber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 18,143
Default

CarbineKid-

Saying P+S and "low light camera" in the same breath is really something of a contradiction. No P+S will do as well in low light as a DSLR (with its imager that is 15 to 20X the size of a P+S imager) equipped with a wide aperture lens.

The best combination of small size and "low light ability IMO is the Canon SD-4000. I have shot extensively with the camera and it is a real performer. Think of it as the S-90 without RAW and Manual, but instead designed for folks who want a camera that can do low light shooting in the Automatic Mode.

The Sony WX-1 is due for a replacement model, with inventory on the dealer's shelves in time for the Christmas Market. The main fault of the WX-1 was that it really lacked adjustment controls. I look for the replacement camera to be a much better camera.

Sarah Joyce
mtclimber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 12:38 PM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 14
Default

So how does the panasonic ZS5 0r 7 compare to the canon SD 4000? I have a panasonic camcorder and its great, in fact I really like panasonics products.
CarbineKid is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 1:30 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
mtclimber's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Oregon, USA
Posts: 18,143
Default

CarbineKid-

The Panasonic ZS-series begins to show substantial noise and image artefacts beginning at ISO 400. The best Flash Range (camera to subject distance measured in feet) on the ZS series cameras that provides the correct exposure is just 6 feet!

I like Panasonic too, but camera performance needs to be good as well.

Sarah Joyce
mtclimber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 5:20 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
skylark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 265
Default

Hi Carbinekid,

Aside from the SD-4000 that Sarah mentioned which is already being sold, if you can wait for user reviews, there are two cameras about to be released that also hold promise of good low-light ability.

The Samsung TL350 (WB2000 outside of the U.S.) is just being released about now. Some vendors said about July 27 but it might be in August. It will have a Schneider Kreuznach 10.2 MP back-lit sensor and 5x zoom lens at 24-120mm, F2.4-F5.x.

http://www.samsung.com/sg/consumer/c...ype=prd_detail


The Sony WX5 (European model number. Don't know of a U.S. model number yet) is scheduled to be released in September 2010. It will have a Vario-Tessar 12.2 MP backlit sensor and 5x zoom lens at 24-120mm, F2.4-F5.9.

http://www.dpreview.com/news/1007/10...ywx5tx9t99.asp

Sky
skylark is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2010, 5:26 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
shoturtle's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Frankfurt AM
Posts: 11,348
Default

both looks promising like the sd4000, but the f2 lens will give the canon a slight lead as they are all 1/2.23 sensor, the 1/3 of a stop will give it an edge.
__________________
Super Frequent Flyer, no joke. Ex Patriot and loving it.
Canon Eos 60D, T1i/500D, Eos1, Eos 630, Olympus EPL-1, and a part time Pentax K-X shooter.
shoturtle is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 7:59 PM.