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Old Sep 14, 2010, 6:52 PM   #1
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Default Looking for a new all around camera

Hello,
After many years with my cannon A85 I have decided to buy a new camera. The main reason for the decision is that I am going on a 3 month trip to south America in which I plan to do a lot of tracks , however once I return home the camera will be used for local hiking & family events and I probably won't buy another camera in the next 3 years , so I'm willing to invest in a camera that I will be happy with.
so what I am looking for :
- outdoors image quality.
- wide angel. - decent zoom.
- size (smaller is better).
- battery life (while on track I won't be able to re-charge).
- good auto mode & some sort of manual control. - HD movies support. - under $400

I'll explain a little about my wishes (it might help you to help me) Most of the pictures I will take will be outdoors of landscapes & ppl, so outdoors IQ is my main concern, of course I will also take occasional pics indoors (probably with flash , even though no flahs capabilites will be welcomed).
Landscapes is also why I want a wide angel.

As for zoom , I noticed that a x3 zoom was a bit limiting and since there are plenty of options with zoom of x8 and above I figure I can get a camera with a large zoom that will satisfy me.
Since I will carry the camera along with plenty of equipment and since I dont want a camera that will stick out in south america I prefer the camera to be compact - however it doesn't have to be super compact

What I noticed with my previous camera is that while I often used the auto/scn mode I really liked the fact that I could always use the manual modes to get the result I want (even though most of the time I used P/Tv/Av and not fully manual mode), and still I am really a on the basic level when it comes to photography (but I want to give myself room to grow).

Support in HD movies is a must, good support in panoramic will be nice, of course that any extra feature will be great :-)

so far I read about the sony HX5V , panasonic ZS7 and canon SX210/130. from what I have read I mostly try to decide between the panasonic ZS7 to canon SX130, while the panasonic has a bit more features and smaller size and the canon who seem to be a better for all round purposes.(and yet the sony panoramic sweep & full HD really sounds great ).
The canon SX20/panasonic FZ35 seems a bit too big & heavy for me.
well, this turned out to be longer then expected.
any advice will be appreciated.

Last edited by akalithium; Sep 14, 2010 at 6:55 PM.
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Old Sep 14, 2010, 8:45 PM   #2
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alkaliuthium-

Your trip description is somewhat confusing. Are you going to be treking and away from civilization for all 3 months?? Is that the reason why you will be unable to recharge your camera batteries??

My husband and I have traveled all over South America in the last 10 years. Based on our experience there will sure be time in which you can recharge. Can you please explain a bit further your recharging problems.

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Old Sep 14, 2010, 8:49 PM   #3
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I read it to mean he'll be there for a while and during that spell will be taking "lots of treks". So he's concerned that his batteries may not last for the trek. Not for the whole 3 months. But let's wait and see his clarification.
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 4:15 AM   #4
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Hi,
I meant that I will out in treks that might last 3-6 days in which I won't be able to recharge batteries.
This means that I will have to take a spare set of batteries whether its AA or lith-ion - but if 2 sets of batteries might still not be enough then thats a problem.
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 12:23 PM   #5
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Consider the new Canon SX-130 which uses 2 AA batteries. The purchase a 4 pack of lithium AA batteries, and you will have a set and a spare that will cover that time period easily.

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Old Sep 15, 2010, 7:28 PM   #6
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yeah, thats what I was thinking , but the bigger size and the fact that there is very little info about this camera makes me hesitate. What is the shot to shot time of the SX130 ? Also - a general question, if I shoot without the zoom - does a X12 lens cause more noise then lets say X8 or X4 lens ?
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 8:44 PM   #7
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get 2 packs of rechargeable eneloop batteries, 8 total, the low discharge will last quite a long time. AA lithium are great, but they get expensive. While the eneloop last quite a long time, I have a older canon a460 that uses AA, and it uses to eat my batteries up quickly, but since I switch to eneloops. I get much better battery life.
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Old Sep 15, 2010, 9:06 PM   #8
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akalitium

No, optical zoom, at any range does not cause "noise." The Sx-130 (I own one) does very well up to ISO 800. After that you will encounter "noise." Noise if a function of the ISO setting in small imager cameras.

Click on the link below for a typical landscape photo taken with the SX-130:

http://anchorse.smugmug.com/Other/Ca...8_XWFSx-X3.jpg

Sarah Joyce

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Old Sep 17, 2010, 9:48 AM   #9
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Thanks for the sample pic :-)
I went to a local store today to take a look at the cameras , unfortunately the salesman did not let me try them ( I guess he figured I won't be buying from him) but I gotta say that the size and weight difference is noticeable.
He also asked me why I don't want the SX210 which he had on sale and it made me think - whats so bad with the SX210 that it got such mediocre reviews ?
After all - it has the same sensor size and aperture like the SX130, so other then the ergonomics of the camera , is there a difference in IQ between the 130 to the 210 ?
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Old Sep 17, 2010, 12:16 PM   #10
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Yes, the SX-130 has markedly better image quality that can be seen right in the photos. The SX-210 is also not sharp at or near full zoom. There are hundreds of user reviews to that effect as well as professional reviews. The SX-210 is on sale because it is NOT selling.

I have attached a photo of my husband which illustrates the sharpness and the indoor quality of the SX-130. Please just click on the link below:

http://anchorse.smugmug.com/Other/Ca...3_jLWja-X3.jpg

Sarah Joyce
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