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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jul 20, 2004, 10:53 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 11
Default

Hello,



This has probably been answered a few times on this board.

But thout I should just go ahead and ask.

Does not hurt to ask the experts.



I am looking for my first digital camera.

All my Pentax point and shoots are broken.



Family member wants to buy me a digital but have no idea as to what to get.

I hate the super small cameras.

like the size of the Olympus 4040 Etc.

Need zoom and it would be nice to have some digiatl movie capanbility as well.

I am no pro.Just ned something for my family photo's.

But clairity is paramont.

Do not know how much they want to spend,but assume the Olympus 5050 is to much.

Will either develop photo's at home or send them out if my computer is not capable of the clairity I am looking for.

Any suggestions?



Thank you,



Mr. Bear
Mr.Bear is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Jul 22, 2004, 5:01 PM   #2
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 11
Default

Hello,

No relplies.



How should I ask this question?



Thank you,

Mr. Bear
Mr.Bear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2004, 6:54 PM   #3
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

I'm sorry nobody has responded to your post. Unfortunately, this is probably the most frequently asked question in the forums, and there is no one right answer.

When you say:

I hate the super small cameras.

like the size of the Olympus 4040 Etc.

Need zoom and it would be nice to have some digiatl movie capanbility as well.

I am no pro.Just ned something for my family photo's
.

This is sort of like saying:

I hatecompactcars

I like something the size of a Buick Lesabre

Air Conditioning would be nice, and I'd like a CD player as well.

I am not a professional driver, I just need something to take me back and forth to work.

There are many cameras meeting your requirements. Each will have it's own set of strengths and weaknesses.

Steve has a page on this site called "The Best Cameras List". You will find a variety of camera models listed there.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/best_cameras.html

Since it sounds like you've looked at the C-4040z, something along the lines of the newer Olympus C-5060 WZ may be a good place to start looking. You'll find it in the "5-6 Megapixel Enthusiast" Category on the above page.

You may want to let users know what your budget is, along with any special needs (longer zoom for nature photography, faster speeds for sports, any need for an external flash since the built in flash in many models is weak, what size printsyou'll need, etc.).


JimC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 22, 2004, 7:22 PM   #4
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 11
Default

Hello,



Thank you for your reply.

These are exactly the answers I am looking for.

What specific details I need to include.



I will think about this and be more specific regarding what you have mentioned.



Mr. Bear
Mr.Bear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 23, 2004, 4:34 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 141
Default

Maybe the canon A 70 or 75 or 80 are something for you?

Ed
ed33 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 23, 2004, 12:12 PM   #6
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 11
Default

Hello,



I will take Buick Regal in green with air please.

Ha,Ha.

I would like a camera in the physical size of the Olympus already mentioned.

How far can zoom go before it becomes unclear?

Obviously the longer the worse the clairity.

This will help me decide on the amount of zoom needed.

I would like to stay in the three to four hundred price range for now.

Something around three hundred and something around four hundred would be helpful.

Regarding speeds,I just want to be able to take pictures of my family,children climbing,soccer Etc.

I am not shooting wild animals running in Africa.

A quality internal flash is extreamly important.

This might narrow choices down quite a bit.

Regarding size of prints,I just want to make standard sized prints and have the cabability to go a bit larger.Nothing to big neded.

Not making poster sized prints.

Mr. bear
Mr.Bear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jul 23, 2004, 11:42 PM   #7
Administrator
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378
Default

You would have to mention soccer..:-)

For a sport like soccer, you'll probably want a longer zoom.

The typical digital camera tends to have around a3x Optical Zoom, which runs from around 35-110mm or so (plus or minus a little on the wide end, or long end).

This is really not adequate for getting shots ofkids in a soccer match (if you want to be able to recognize them in the photo).

So, this puts you into the "super zoom" category (10-12x Optical Zoom).

These models do have some drawbacks.. For example, you will not have an optical viewfinder. Instead, you'll have an Electronic Viewfinder. Basically, this is a miniature LCD Display. Some are better than others. One of the drawbacks of some, is that they "blank out" temporarily in between photos. If you are trying to take a lot of photos in rapid succession, this can make it difficult to follow action while shooting.

You seem to indicate that a decent flash is very important. This is another quirk (depending on what you mean by decent). Most digital cameras have relatively weak internal flash units (around 12 feet on average).

I'd look through Steve's "The Best Cameras List", at the models in the "10-12x Optical Super Zoom category, reading the reviews and checking the prices. Make sure to read the conclusion section carefully (this is where you'll find the pros and cons of each model. Note that the first part of each review is usually using the Manufacturer's Descriptons, so you'll find some "marketing hype" there. The conclusion section is whereyou'll see an unbiased opinion.

http://www.steves-digicams.com/best_cameras.html

Then, "test drive" them in a store, to see how that fit you -- paying attention to Viewfinder Useability, Speed of Operation, Ergonomics, Menu and Control Layout, etc.

After that, you may want to get users opinons of one model versus another.

A couple of models in your price range in this category in Steve's list, are the Kodak DX6490 and the Fuji S5000. These are available for just a hair under $400.00 from some vendors (Circuit City is an example of a vendor that may have them in stock locally). Both of these have a little better than average flash range (which is something you seem to be looking for). You'll find the flash range in the specifications section for models in the reviews. The majority of digicams only go to around 12-14 feet.

Note that these modelsdo haveweaknesses in some areas, but unless you're needing very large prints, I doubt you'd notice them much. .

You may also want to see if the stores have something that's not on the list in this category. For example, Olympus came out with a C-765 model that's currently on the list (but a little outside of your price range). Well, they had some older models in the same class (other C-7xx series models) that you may find to be within your budget (if stores still have any in stock). However, make sure to read the reviews carefully for any of these you may find and want to consider. Each will have it's own set of strengths and weaknesses.

For a little more money, another choice would be something like the new Canon S1 IS. It's got a stabilized zoom lens (which helps to prevent blur from camera shake). It also has a much better movie mode than most models, and even lets you use the optical zoom while recording (most will not). Of course, movies will not be anywhere near as good as a real video camera from a Digital Still Camera (IMO). But , the new Canon is an improvement over most. Note that it's flash range is not quite as good as the others, but I think it's image quality is a little better.

Be advised that it's highest quality movie mode from a model like this (Canon) will use around 1MB/second. So, this could be a big drawback to using it (memory card space requirements). Personally, I never use movie modes, and the sound quality is lacking, even from the "best of them" IMO. Steve has sample movie clips in the images section of his reviews. So, you be the judge (you mentioned wanting to take videos). Also, check out the maximum recording length. Some are limited to very short clips.

The Canon is much better than most in this respect (clips up to 1GB in length, so you can fill a memory card with 'em).Again, check out the review conclusion section for all models you consider. You'll also find sample images from these models, taken of the same subjects for some photos.

Also be aware that you'll want decent batteries for any camera you buy. If it takes AA Batteries, you'll need to buy NiMH rechargeables. Alkaline batteries will not last long. You'll find info on NiMH AA's and chargershere:

http://www.steves-digicams.com/nimh_batteries.html

You'll want a spare even if it uses a proprietary Lithium Ion battery, too (and these can be "pricey", but you can find less expensive Generics on Ebay).

You'll also need a larger memory card (where the photos are stored). The ones that ship with the camera don't tend to hold many photos. There are multiple types of memory cards used in cameras (CompactFlash, Secure Digital, Xd Picturecard, Sony Memory Sticks, etc.). So, you'll need to buy the right type of card for the camera you get.

So, factor these things into your budget.

Read through the reviews, make sure to "test drive" the models, and if you decide your requirements need to change (or you need something lower priced), you may need to compromise on one portion or another -- deciding which items are most important -- or perhaps finding one of the models that has just been replaced by a newer model. Sometimes stores have closeout prices on these.

Hopefully, I haven't been too confusing with this response.

Also, what I think is a good idea for a camera category, may not be what's really best for you. Only you can decide that. I'm only offering some places to start, based on the limited information you've given (for example: photos of Soccer). :-)

Try to learn as much as you can about the models on Steve's "Best Cameras List" by reading about them to get a better feel for their strengths and weaknesses. He considers these models to have the best bang for the buck (but there are other good models as well).
JimC 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 10:42 AM.