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Old Jan 27, 2005, 8:21 PM   #1
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Hi, I'm new to this forum, though I've lurked it quite a bit. Lots of experts here and I've certainly learned a lot. Thanks to all.

My question to the gurus, which would you prefer between an Olympus C-5050 vs Canon A-95 (or something similar)? The Olympus is a couple years old but costed close to $800 when it came out vs $300 for the A95 today. Do they even compare?

I'm a budding amateur photographer soappreciate the manual controls both have. The A95 of course is much more portable (which is nice, but not too important to me). My main interest, is great picture quality (primarily portraits, family events, artistic, etc)--so are the smaller new cameras, equipped with the latest technologies comparable to higher-end models that are 2-3 years old? If not, I'd ratherpick one up used but just don't know. Which would you rather have

Any thoughts? Thanks in advance
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Old Jan 27, 2005, 8:46 PM   #2
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I'm going to say something heretical on this digital site.

The best cameras I have ever used are my Contax film cameras. Compared to the 'camera experience' of using them, my Sony V3 is really primitive.

I have more pure 'fun' using a 1953 Zeiss Ikon Ikoflex IIc TLR 6x6 that has no auto focus, no exposure meter at all but also has no batteries.

I remember going out with this 50 year old camera...taking some pictures around our lakefront. There was a guy there taking shots of his girlfriend with his new dSLR. I saw him and mentioned that there was about 50 years of difference in technology between us. He looked at my antique and....shrugged. BUT, the girlfirend was really interested. She wanted to look through the viewfinder and see things reversed. He was getting pissed off so, I decided to be discrete and move along. But using the old camera really gives methe experienceof really participating in the photography process. And the images from those 6x6 negatives are amazing!



So, I know this is a bit off topic from what you asked but I think that you can also consider not only yesterday but yesteryear if you are looking for a camera.
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Old Jan 27, 2005, 9:13 PM   #3
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Good point, and really Great pic. Thanks for your reply. I hope when I'm a bit more experienced as a photographer, I can also develop a good relationship with a particular camera. As a true novice (though with high aspirations), I'm just not sure between a newer cheaper camera (such as the A95) or a higher end older camera (such as Oly C-5050).

I guess since my main interest is getting the highest quality pic, I'm not sureif the technology of the newer lower-end cams have caught up with the quality of yesterday's higher-end cams. Perhaps I'm just overthinking this....but appreciate any thoughts!


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Old Jan 28, 2005, 3:24 AM   #4
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Depends on what you mean by "high end" and if portability is a big factor for you. Discounting some older "sleeper" digicams, the newer cameras are ususally faster, have better "in-camera" processing and offer more options in a smaller package.

Now, if size isn't an issue for you...you would be hard pressed to find any newer digicam that can produce better images than an older Digital SLR. You can find a used Canon D30 for around $500-US & that will most likely include one lens. At it's release the D30 was selling for around $2000-US, it was the state-of-the-art & still has one of the best sensors (with the best pixel ratio) ever made.
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Old Jan 28, 2005, 12:55 PM   #5
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wow, that's great insight--I'll check that out. I think I may be too inexperienced for a dSLR at the moment, but certainly worth looking into.

Fortunately, i'm not in a major rush so will probably try out a few models before deciding--unfortunately some of the older models that I like, will be difficult to find in stores to get any kind of 'feel' for it. Maybe, Ill hold off for the oly c5500 which has great specs at a really low price--then again, the fuji f810 look great too--or the pana fz3..etc, etc.

...the search continues. Thanks for your reply!
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Old Jan 28, 2005, 11:21 PM   #6
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Meryl, it's hard to resist this one: My Minolta Autocord is newer and better thanan Icoflex. It's got levers instead of dials for advancing and focusing, auto film counter resetting, better spacing between frames, and a brighter viewscreen, and a Japanese brand, which means that it's better priced than the gear with German "cachet".

The only problems with the Autocord that I notice are: (1) You can't say "50 years old" for it. (2) You can't get cool light leak effects by leaving the film counter cover open. (3) It's a Minolta, geez. (4) Many people remember their parents / grandparents / etc. having TLR's.

On the plus side, I sometimes enjoy the semi-frequent compliments and remarks and looks that one gets when using such cameras -- it is nice to be stopped on the street by a young couple saying "we just wanted to say that that's a lovely camera".

Cheers.

(BTW, I also have an Icoflex, among many other camera types, and also a fondness for Contax cameras..)
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Old Jan 29, 2005, 12:10 AM   #7
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aspir wrote:
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wow, that's great insight--I'll check that out. I think I may be too inexperienced for a dSLR at the moment, but certainly worth looking into.
You may think you are too inexperienced for a DSLR but you might surprise yourself! Even if you get an older digicam, you will become better-faster if you put it in manual mode & leave it there. DSLR's & higher end digicams all work in many modes but in manual mode you still can make great images without knowing everything possible about photography.

If you insist on being stuck on getting just one older model digicam...I would recommend looking for an Olympus C2100UZ. I jumped from film to digital with that model & I have many great 8x10's on my walls that rival many cameras I've had, both before & since...
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Old Jan 29, 2005, 10:04 AM   #8
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Madwand wrote:
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Meryl, it's hard to resist this one: My Minolta Autocord is newer and better thanan Icoflex. It's got levers instead of dials for advancing and focusing, auto film counter resetting, better spacing between frames, and a brighter viewscreen, and a Japanese brand, which means that it's better priced than the gear with German "cachet".

The only problems with the Autocord that I notice are: (1) You can't say "50 years old" for it. (2) You can't get cool light leak effects by leaving the film counter cover open. (3) It's a Minolta, geez. (4) Many people remember their parents / grandparents / etc. having TLR's.

On the plus side, I sometimes enjoy the semi-frequent compliments and remarks and looks that one gets when using such cameras -- it is nice to be stopped on the street by a young couple saying "we just wanted to say that that's a lovely camera".

Cheers.

(BTW, I also have an Icoflex, among many other camera types, and also a fondness for Contax cameras..)
Well, there is a real pleasure to using classic cameras. I have a Super Ikonta, a Nettar and a Contaflex super as well and they are all a lot of fun to use.

One thing that I found fantastic was the price. I got everything that was ever made for the Contaflex...all the lenses (including stereo 3D), cases, flash (with bulbs)...everything for less than the cost of my Sony. And the cost of ALL of the classic cameras added together was less than the what I remember paying for my old Sony D700 back in the late 90's.

The greatthing is having fun taking pictures and, for me, the medium isn't as important as getting out there with a camera in your hand...besides, sometimes it is nice to have a camera that you never have to worry about battery life! :-)
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