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Old Oct 12, 2004, 10:51 AM   #1
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I'm used to an old Canon Powershot A40, which has lots of manual settings (shutter speed settings, aperture settings, exposure compensation, etc)

I'd like to upgrade to something with better low-light capability but I don't want to lose these important manual features!

They have been my best friend in taking quality photos.

Thanks for any help you can provide. Whatdigital cameras with lots of manual controls do you like?
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Old Oct 12, 2004, 10:56 AM   #2
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i forgot that price is probably an important element.

i'd like to spend less than $600, but could entertain more expensive models...
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Old Oct 13, 2004, 3:45 AM   #3
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The only thing that comes to mind is the new Fuji S-5100.

It has a focus assist light - albeit not a very powerful one. It's still better than no focus assist light at all, which is the case for all other cameras I know of in this price range (at least those with a significant zoom capability).
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Old Oct 13, 2004, 6:25 AM   #4
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There are many prosumer cameras from Canon, Minolta, Olympus, Nikon and Fuji that has all the manual features you want. Idon't know what the pricings in the US are but it should be possible to get something like Olympus C5060 or Konica-Minolta A1 for 600 not much more than 600USD. Alternatively, you can stick with Canon A-series. They are much cheaper, look at A85 or A95, both cameras look very promising.
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Old Oct 13, 2004, 12:46 PM   #5
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For better low light, not only should you look at a good focus assist beam, good flash (external TTL flash would be better with its own focus assist), but a lens with a smaller F number would open up more to let in more light. The A-40 has an F2.8-4.8 (the more you zoom in, the more the lens closes), the S-5100 mentioned above has an F2.8-3.1 which doesn't close as much as it zooms but doesn't open up any further. If you can still find it, there's the Olympus C-5050 which has an F1.8-2.6 opening, which opens a full stop wider than the others, and at full zoom it's open a little larger than the others at full wide.

Now I'm not specifically recommending this camera, but this is what I would look for in a low light shooter (especially if you get into situations where you aren't allowed to use a flash).
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Old Oct 15, 2004, 12:47 PM   #6
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Mikefellh wrote:
Quote:
For better low light, not only should you look at a good focus assist beam, good flash (external TTL flash would be better with its own focus assist), but a lens with a smaller F number would open up more to let in more light. The A-40 has an F2.8-4.8 (the more you zoom in, the more the lens closes), the S-5100 mentioned above has an F2.8-3.1 which doesn't close as much as it zooms but doesn't open up any further. If you can still find it, there's the Olympus C-5050 which has an F1.8-2.6 opening, which opens a full stop wider than the others, and at full zoom it's open a little larger than the others at full wide.

Now I'm not specifically recommending this camera, but this is what I would look for in a low light shooter (especially if you get into situations where you aren't allowed to use a flash).
I own a C5050 you are right the ultra fast zoom lens really helps to produce sharp images in low light without a flash. Even better results can be obtained with an image stabilized camera, like Minolta A1 or A2. Users report that you can produce perfect images at 2 stops longer exposure than withoutand 1/15 sec works perfect
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Old Oct 15, 2004, 1:02 PM   #7
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ChrisChatham wrote:
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I'd like to upgrade to something with better low-light capability but I don't want to lose these important manual features!
You may want to better define what you mean by better low-light capability.

Do you mean better low light autofocus? Are your subjects close enough for a focus assist lamp to work (or is a weak autofocus assist lamp your biggest problem)?

Do you mean low light without a flash or tripod?Do you need a camera that allows faster shutter speeds to reduce motion blur from subject movement; or image stabilization to help reduce motion blur from camera shake? Do you mean longer exposure capability for shooting cityscapes at night, etc.?

Do you mean less noiseif you use higher ISO speeds in low light?

Do you mean you are getting underexposed photos in low light from a flash that is too weak for the distances you are trying to shoot at?

"better low-light capability" can mean different things to different users.

Let us know what limitations you arefinding with your current camera, and try to be more specific on what kind of better low light capability you are looking for (with examples of shooting conditions you arehaving problems in).

You'll probably get more useful responses that way.


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