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Old Jan 29, 2005, 8:23 AM   #1
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I seek a camera with which one could take great impromptu pictures of flying birds and wildlife, etc., with one hand, while barreling down a mountain at high speed on a mountain bike (not really what I do but accurately portrays my needs). I seek a lot, but maybe someone can point me in a useful direction. I see almost everything I want out there, just not in one camera.

I want to be able to simply point the camera in the general direction of something I can hardly see with the naked eye (e.g., I know there is a bird up there somewhere inthe sky), shoot and brind it home, blow it up so bird fills 8x10 with no noise. But at other times I want to be able to override all auto settings for great sunsets, backlight situations, etc.

Key requirement is one-handed operation (no sliding lens covers, some ultra compacts so small had to operate with one hand)

Size also important - have to be able tocarry camera comfortablly, unnoticeably in shirt pocket where I can get at it quickly with one hand- some compacts getting too deep due to ergonometric hand grips. Have to be able to get at camera quickly and operate instantaneously (before the bird flys away ;-). Has to be robust (single-handed operation in violent situations = many drops).

Almost forget - also wide angle - at least 30mm.

Summary (most I have seen in different cameras): ultra-compact with great ergonometrics, one-handed operation, low noise 7+Mp, 5+ Optical Zoom, wide angle (30mm), stabilization, manual overrides,instant boot and pict-to-pict, great aperature and lens speed, long battery life.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions.
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Old Jan 29, 2005, 12:10 PM   #2
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You need the Acme 3000 digicam with quantum level anti-shake correction and the Uri Geller faith based rangefinder. It also has a 30-30,000 mm (equiv) zoom and an noise-free ISO range of 10-300,000 with a 20 stop dynamic range. It is mounted in a stud that can be placed in your eye-brow, following the motion of your eye. With a thought controlled shutter release and negative lag time (it captures a bird that was there up to ten seconds ago) you will never miss.

The major drawback of this camera is its tendency to randomly convert itself into an aardvark-antiaardvark pair while sucking up enough dark matter to increase its mass to something like ten times that of the moon. Kinda hard on your eye-brow, but that only happens about once/fortnight. It can be found at many photo shops in Brooklyn: just send them your credit card info (all cards), you bank account number, and a signed blank check. They will know what you want without telling them, just send the money. All your money.

In other words: you ain't never gonna find such a camera.
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Old Jan 29, 2005, 12:24 PM   #3
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lol @ BillDrew hehe

If you want something that fits in a pocket, you need an ultra-compact or compact... and if it must fit in your pocket and not be noticeable then I guess you are limited to ultra-compacts only.

None of the ultra-compacts have high zoom. So capturing the birds is out of the question, unless the bird is really close to you

There are only a few cameras with big wide-angle so you are kind of limited there too...basically, you won't find a wide-angle camera with high zoom. Pick one or the other: zoom or wide-angle...

The closest thing to what you describe is a high-end prosumer (these usually have high megapixels, moderately high zoom, fast operation, etc)... but these are much larger...

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Old Jan 29, 2005, 1:24 PM   #4
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BillDrew - the first post was pretty funny, but your'shad me laughing. Keep 'em coming!

PhilR.
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Old Jan 29, 2005, 1:36 PM   #5
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Hmm...the Acme 3000, I'll have to check that one out

Extremist, you've given us quite an order to fill, in fact combining everything you've said into one camera is (as far as I know, and not counting nuclear digicams) quite impossible. Ultimately, you're going to have to make a choice, size or performance. You can go with a small digicam and still get great shots, but you have to accept that it will not have great zoom nor a good wide angle. Also, 7MP seems very excessive if you're just going to be printing 8x10, unless you plan on cropping an ungodly amount.

On the other hand, you can get a much large digicam or dSLR and get great performance. Unfortunately, it would be fairly large, definitely noticeable. On thebright sideyou could get great zoom and great wide angle. Not to mention unparalleled image quality.

When it comes down to it, it sounds to me as though a smaller digital camera, probably an ultra-compact would fit you best. A few to look into would be the Sony W1, the Sony P150/200, the Panasonic FX7, the Canon SD300 and and the Canon S500. Check them out on this site.

Best of luck with your search!~Jack

BTW, apologies for our bit of laughter, but you have to admit, it was pretty funny.

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Old Jan 30, 2005, 10:30 AM   #6
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Wow! I am surprised at the degree of pessimism.

Almost everything I am seeking is already there in existing camers. There are several Mfrs offering close to what I am looking for. I am looking for one that would combine some of the good features - I am sure it is coming, just hope someone might know where it is already there.

Before going into the features I already see, a commentas to why the 7Mp. I am taking pictures of distant objects that I do not have time to frame in the viewfinder, soo when I get home, I take only a very small% of the original image and blow that up to an 8x10. Also, re. my reference to not noticeable - that is not noticeable to me - not bulky or heavy.

Canon Z70 (great wide angle and 3.5 Zoom is getting close - sliding lens cover blocks one-handed operation - where is 7Mp S500 sucessor?)

Olympus Z7000 (very close, good size, 7 Mp, 5x optical zoom, no sliding lens cap - just no wide angle)

Ricoh R1V (great size, 4.8 Optical zoom starting at 28mm - but only 5Mp andRicoh not known among top cameras)

Panasonic DMC-FX7 (great size, image stabilization, so-so zoom)

Sony ? (DSC-P200 is good, but poor zoom where is the 7Mp successor to DSC-W1)

The trends are definately there. Almost eferyone is offering a small format 7Mp model and most are showing they can put it in a small body (around 4 x 2.2 x 1). The Zoom is a challenge, but Canon (S70) shows it can have a zoom starting at 28mm. Ricoh shows it can be close to 5x zoom. 5+ optical Zoom should be common by the end of this year (but I can't wait that long).
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Old Jan 30, 2005, 3:17 PM   #7
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The Acme 3000 is the only camera that is likely to satify you. (The 3000 refers to the MegaPixel count of the sensor.) That will allow you to crop out 1/10th of the linear dimension of the image and still have enough to satisfy your requirement that:
Extremist wrote:
Quote:
... I want to be able to simply point the camera in the general direction of something I can hardly see with the naked eye (e.g., I know there is a bird up there somewhere inthe sky), shoot and brind it home, blow it up so bird fills 8x10 with no noise. ...
Of course, if another company manages to figure out how to implement the the Uri Geller faith based viewfinder, they will be able to zero in on the bird and thus not need the extreme after shot cropping, but they will still have to develope as good an anti-shake system as the Acme 3000 has.
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Old Jan 30, 2005, 4:43 PM   #8
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BillDrew wrote:
Quote:
The Acme 3000 is the only camera that is likely to satify you. (The 3000 refers to the MegaPixel count of the sensor.) That will allow you to crop out 1/10th of the linear dimension of the image and still have enough to satisfy your requirement that:
Extremist wrote:
Quote:
... I want to be able to simply point the camera in the general direction of something I can hardly see with the naked eye (e.g., I know there is a bird up there somewhere inthe sky), shoot and brind it home, blow it up so bird fills 8x10 with no noise. ...
Of course, if another company manages to figure out how to implement the the Uri Geller faith based viewfinder, they will be able to zero in on the bird and thus not need the extreme after shot cropping, but they will still have to develope as good an anti-shake system as the Acme 3000 has.
:lol:


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Old Jan 30, 2005, 6:46 PM   #9
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Bill,

Doggonit...I was on my way to Ebay to buy that camera! Good thing I kept reading. Thanks for brightening my day.

"If you build it, they will come,"and I was on my way.

BTW, the Nikon 5400 (has a rebate) and Canon G5/6 are good, small cameras with great features.

Honey
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Old Jan 31, 2005, 12:19 AM   #10
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Good one Bill.:lol:

To Extremist:

The camera that you want is not available yet, Acme 3000 maybe????. It's true those features are found on various different cameras (and they are from VERY DIFFERENT classes of cameras).

If you want an ultra-compact, then you must make do with a smaller sensor and this equals more noise. And the smaller sensor also means that the aperture cannot be smaller than f/8. And ergonomics? Small = no space = small buttons = go figure, unless you have the hands of a baby. (Maybe they should have a camera controlled by voice or thought, Acme 3000 again. Small = small battery = short life.

I've not seen an ultra compact with more than 5MPs or 4X optical. The smallest 5X optical 7MP camera that I've seen are the Pentax 750 and Olympus C7000Z. And these are not small. More X zoom means more glass needed therefore not so compact. Just look at the FZ20 with the 12X zoom.

Most cameras with IS are large ultrazooms and the smallest is the Pana FX7 with OIS and it's 3X zoom only.

The other problem is if you can't see the subject, chances are the camera can't too. The camera needs you to point it to the right direction (WYSIWYG), we have yet to see a smart camera that knows what you want to shoot and do it automatically.

Be realistic and thanks for giving us a chance to release some steam here. Who knows maybe one of the manufacturers will make the camera for us.
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