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Old Feb 9, 2011, 3:52 PM   #1
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Default New baby coming…need a camera! PLEASE HELP!

Hi guys,

I’m new to this forum, and it looks great based on my first few minutes of looking around! My wife is having a baby in a few months, and we’d like a new point and shoot camera. I enjoy taking pictures, but I don’t really know much about manual controls or any of the more “technical” aspects of photography. My wife just wants a camera that will work well in auto mode or in a few basic preset modes (night shot, indoor, etc.).

We currently have a Canon SD750 that I bought almost 4 years ago. My wife doesn’t like how long it takes between shots and would also like something that performs a little better indoors. Our main priorities are probably (in order):
  • Fast performance (starts up quickly, small lag time between shots, focuses quickly)
  • Good image quality in auto mode
  • Small size (Hopefully pocket-sized)
  • Low price (we’d like to stay in the $250 range, but might move to $300 for the right camera)
I know if I want great performance, a DSLR would be my best bet, but it’s not really in the budget right now. I’d like something with a little bit of manual control that I can play around with, but I realize I may have to sacrifice that at our price point. We’ve looked at a few in electronics stores. My wife likes the speediness of the Nikon s8100, and it’s in our price range. Is that a good option? Are there others that would be better?

Thanks! Sorry for writing a book, but I wanted to be thorough so people can give the most applicable advice.
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 4:06 PM   #2
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canon s95, panasonic lx5 or the new olympus xz1 will be the best option for what you will need for indoor shooting with a digicam. They have fast lenses and larger sensor, so they preform better in low light environments
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 5:03 PM   #3
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I also looked at the Nikon S-8100 rather seriously. However, after a great deal of research I found it to have a measurable problem with focusing correctly when zooming while taking a video clip. Instead, again after some research I opted for the Canon SX130 camera.

While the S8100 has a focus problem, it also is short changed in the manual controls department. The SX130 has a full set of manual and automatic controls and no focusing problems. We have found it a lot of fun to use and its price: around $200 at Amazon, fit our budget nicely.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 5:11 PM   #4
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If you want to capture better quality moments of you new baby, go with the much larger 1/1.67 sensors over the smaller 1/2.23 sensors. The nikon may be a good low light digicam compare to other small sensor camera. But when compare to the larger sensor, the nikon falls off allot faster. As your new baby is only a baby for a short time, and if you want to capture those low light memories. You really want to spend the little bit more and get the larger sensor camera.
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 9:57 PM   #5
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I am willing to back my recommendation up with actual photos from the camera that I recommended: the Canon SX130. I home showturtle will be willing to also back up his recommendations with actual photos that he has taken.

This first sample is an indoor flash photo of my husband.

Sarah Joyce
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Old Feb 9, 2011, 10:02 PM   #6
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The second photo sample from the Canon SX130 is a photo taken indoors in our post office WITHOUT flash, by numerically increasing the ISO setting to ISO 800.

The nice thing about the SX130 is that it takes really clear photos, have a well powered built-in flash unit and stay within a $200 budget. That is an important item when you have a baby on the way.

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Old Feb 9, 2011, 10:54 PM   #7
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Yes that is flash, but there are time you want to capture the moment without the flash, and the small sensor will not perform when those situation comes up. Flash are intrusive. And are not always idea.

I am very aware of the OP's situation, as a bunch of friends are having kids. And couple have had issues with there digicam in the situation where a flash is not possible. And when they did, the flash woke the baby. So having 5 friends having kids in the last 4 month and then talking to me about the problem. Really gives me very good insight the OP's situation. 2 of my friends end up with a 60D, and 50 1.8 when a flash is not advisable.

To the OP, your baby is a baby a very short time, if you can afford the 100 dollar more for the big sensor Point and Shoot. If you can get the better low light camera. You will not regret missing those special moments where a small sensor camera will let you down.
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 1:56 AM   #8
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Hi and welcome congrats on the new arrival. Some good advice and some good cameras have been suggested and I think they would do the job for you. I would throw in one more point I would think about a camera with and external flash that can be bounced, this will mean upping the budget a bit to a canon G11 or G12. You will also get a tilt and swivel rear screen very handy for those shots you need to squeeze in on an angel or low down.. Good Luck
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Old Feb 10, 2011, 2:24 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtclimber View Post
This first sample is an indoor flash photo of my husband.
This photo truly looks like a watercolor painting, even at this small size. I wouldn't shoot with this ISO setting under any circumstances as to me, the photo is entirely unusable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mtclimber View Post
The second photo sample from the Canon SX130 is a photo taken indoors in our post office WITHOUT flash, by numerically increasing the ISO setting to ISO 800.
This one looks good.

Still, if I were in the OP's shoes, I wouldn't even consider any camera in this class unless the budget is really tight.
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Old Feb 11, 2011, 5:02 PM   #10
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Thanks for the advice everyone! It looks like the general consensus is that I'll be making a sacrifice by staying in my current budget and going with the S8100 or SX130. Is that accurate? If I can't sell my wife on expanding our budget, are these my two best options? Are there any others worth looking at?

If I were to extend my budget, I would probably not go with the G11 or G12. They're pretty pricey, and a little bigger than I would want. The s95 looks like an option, but I've heard it's a little on the slow side, which wouldn't fit my first criteria. What are some other options in the $300-400 range that take great pictures, and and small and speedy?
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