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Old Mar 27, 2005, 2:47 PM   #1
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I've really been trying to carefully research this purchase, since I already own a Lumix DMC FZ10, a Powershot 100 and an HP digital in addition to a Pentax and a Canon SLR with a stack of lenses for each. I think the compact camera is the most sensible one to upgrade and really like the 6 mp 1/1.8 sensor. I've pretty much decided against an FX7, although I love my FZ10. Blown up the Casio looks very good for an unbranded lens, although it seems a little more yellowish than the G600. In either case the color look very rich and the samples were well focused. I've printed some of Steve's samples of each and I've croppedsections and blew them up and looked at them side by side. Oddly enough, the new Casio 7.2, which I also compared,didn't look quite as good to me. Any thoughts would be appreciated.
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Old Mar 28, 2005, 1:56 PM   #2
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Decided to buy the g600. I made purchase from Buydig.com for 233.00 US. Great deal! I hope that they are reliable. J&R had it for 250 plus 5.00 shipping. Also a good deal.

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Old Mar 28, 2005, 4:15 PM   #3
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Buydig.com is OK (they are not scam artists like some internet vendors).

My preference would have been J&R if the price was that close (since J&R has a pretty liberal return policy and buydig has a restocking fee if you decide you want a refund).

I suspect you'll really like the G600. I've got a Konica KD-510z (a.k.a, Minolta G500) that I carry around in my pocket. The G600 is pretty much the same camera (only with a different sensor,appearing to use the Sharp 6MP CCD).

It does have a few quirks, but I've been quite pleased with mine. The redeye can be pretty bad (as is typical with subcompact models). So, I'll warn you about that. ;-)

You'll really appreciate the fast startup time (I know I do).

Overall, I'd say the photos require less post processing compared to just about any camera I've owned. Konica (now Konica-Minolta) did a pretty decent job with the way they are processing the images in these models.

Heck, this model has a hidden RAW mode, andit's very difficult tosurpass the quality of the JPEG's if you tryuse it -- even with lots of post processing (so they must be doing something right).

BTW, there are some things about it you may want to know (that you probably won't figure out by reading the manual). Unless the G600 manual has improved over the earlier models in this series, the translation from Japanese to English leaves a little to be desired.

So, I'll give you a long winded rundown of it here:

Customizing the Controller keys:

You can setup the camera so that you rarely need to use the menus. Basically, just turn everything on under the Custom Menu. Here's how:

Press the Menu Button, and go to Setup, Custom.

You'll see a list of icons. Select each one, and turn all choices ON.

This turns on the Continuous Mode feature (and you can leave it that way all the time) -- allowing faster repeat photos, by holding down the shutter button.

Then, frequently used features are under the Controller Keys.

Then, you'll have this:

Left: switches between landscape, macro, self timer modes, including fixed focus choices (1m, 2m, etc.).

You'll find that leaving it on the 2m focus choice works great for indoors where light is not always good enough for accurate Autofocus (and using fixed focus eliminates the AF lag, too). Depth of Field is good enough so that if you're at wide angle, just about everything within the flash range will be sharp with this setting.

Right: switches between different flash modes

Up: allows you to set Exposure Compensation using left and right keys

Down: allows you to change White Balance Settings.

This gives you very fast access to exposure compensation, focus distances, white balance, and flash modes, without using the menus.

Turn it all on. Then, use it for a while, then go back into the Custom Menu, and turn off choices you don't use.

You can allow or deny specific flash modes from appearing as a choice when using the right arrow key to toggle between them.

You can allow or deny focus choices from appearing -- even including (or excluding) macro, landscape, 1m, 2m, 4m from appearing as a toggle choice when the left controller key is pressed.

With everything turned on, you also get Autoexposure Lock with a half press of the shutter, and a press of the up arrow, or Autofocus lock, with a half press of the shutter and a press of the left arrow.

These virtually eliminate shutter lag when enabled (AF lock, AE lock). These will stay locked until you either change the zoom settings, or disable them (in the same way that you enabled them).

Also, make sure to turn Quick View off (Setup, QuickView). This reduces lag time some, since it won't display the last photo taken for as long.

BTW, the camera defaults to Normal vs. Fine JPEG compression. This allows more photos on the Memory Card.

If you want the absolute best quality, simply change the mode to Fine (under the Resoluton Menu) instead. If you don't like the front panel LED's, you can turn them off by going to Setup, Sounds; and turning off "Beep".

Also, make sure you hold the camera in a way that you don't have your right middle finger near the light sensor (small hole on front of camera). This will cause the flash to throttle down causing underexposed photos. If you get an occasional underexposed flash shot (and you're within flash range), your finger getting in the way of this sensor is probably the reason.

Redeye Correction (which can be tough with this camera, since you often get more reflection than redeye):

For a "quick fix" irfanview seems to work about as well or better thanany (most of the time). For very severe "demon eye", I sometimes resort to Epson Film Factory. I think I've tried just about every software package around with redeye correction, and sometimes, this one is the only one that works good enough (unless you want to replace the eyes with an editor). LOL

Youcan download the free irfanview from http://www.irfanview.com (make sure to download the free plug-ins too).

I generally shoot with Redeye Reduction turned off (I think that redeye reduction modes can spoil the photos, since the preflash used can change facial expressions).

To use irfanview to reduce redeye, zoom in on an eye using the + key. Then, use your mouse to select the area around the red (square box).

Then, the redeye reduction menu choice will work. However, I usually don't use it this way. A better way is using the Effects, Effects Browser Menu Choice. You'll see redeye correction there, too. The difference is that you can change the amount applied. You'll see a before and after box to help you determine how much is needed.

A couple of more comments on the camera's setup:

You'll see a "Slow Shutter Menu". This menu controls the slowest allowable shutter speed for Autoexposure (with separate settings for Flash, and non-Flash (or Night Portrait) flash modes.

The camera defaults to a 1/60 second shutter speed for flash photos (which it speeds up, as zoom is used). It will prefer the flash setting you set here. Most of the time indoors, I use 1/30 second (but sometimes I'll even go down to 1/15 in lower light). That way, I'll pick up some of the ambient lighting in the room.

The second setting you see under the Slow Shutter Settings menu is for the slowest allowable shutter speed without flash. It defaults to 1/8 second. If you want to take night photos using a tripod, you may want to change this to 1 second (shown as 1/1). This will allow a slower shutter speed, while still using the camera's autoexposure (so that you don't have to use manual exposure instead, as long as exposures no longer than 1 second are needed).

It doesn't hurt to leave the second setting set slower (since it will automatically increase shutter speeds in better light anyway)

One more thing... to enter playback mode, you don't need to open the camera cover -- simply press the play button for about 2 seconds with the cover closed and it will come on in playback mode.


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Old Mar 28, 2005, 5:37 PM   #4
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Wow! Thank you for all the info. I researched this camera far more than I have researched practically anything that I own. I've had a digital Elph since they first came out and I really like it. However, it is only a 2MP camera. My daughter has a 3.1 and mine seems to take much better pictures. We both shoot at maximum reolution at all times.I just didn't want to buy another camera for the sake of buying it. I love my DMC-FZ10. My pictures are all over various Coast Guard publications. Because of it's size with the strobe, filters etc., it is impractical to carry on a regular basis, although some of the zoom pics are amazing. My Elph just can't deal with the cropping that comes with the kind of shooting that I do and both of these cameras have slow start-up times. I miss a lot of unique shots that way. There were a half a dozen dolphin bow riding in front of the CG 41 footer in January. It would have been an amazing shot since the were so close to to the boat and all out of the water. I was just in front of itrunning another boat for a "Blessing of the Fleet Regatta." By the time I got the camera out and ready to shoot, the moment was lost. Even is I had gotten it, at 2MP, it would have had to be perfectly framed, since there is absolutely no margin of error. Lots of unusual things happen very quickly, Having a small high resolution, fast camera with youat leastgives you a chance getting the photo. I always take indoor photos without red-eye reduction. I aggree with you completely on this. I use Photoshop Elements and PhotoImpact for working on my pictures. I will download the program that you suggested and try it. I have read all of your posts and it is very obvious that you love your camera. It was a big factor in my final decision, believe it or not. I feel that my phot graphs, even though the publications often ruin them in reproduction, our a reflection upon on me, just like what I wear or drive or live in, for that matter. At least with my photographs, the publicationstarts out with a properly framed, focused,and exposed effort. I just got a cover shot this week. Unfortunately, they squashed it a little rather than croppin it prperly. Most people won't notice, but it burns me up. Thank you again for all of these great tips. I can't wait to get the camera so that I can start to enjoy it's features. Jim


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Old Mar 28, 2005, 5:54 PM   #5
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jdennen wrote:
Quote:
[snip]
Quote:
By the time I got the camera out and ready to shoot, the moment was lost.
Yes -- that's one of the things I really like about my Konica (quick on the draw). ;-)

Let us know how you like it, and congrats on your cover shot (even though they "squashed it").


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Old Mar 28, 2005, 10:22 PM   #6
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Thanks, Jim. I just got a shipping confirmation from Buydig. com. So far, so good. When an editor does this kind of thing, it's just laziness. The people will like it because it makes them look like they lost a couple of pounds. I asked my wife and daughter. They both thought that it looked slightly distorted also. Maybe they didn't notice on the galleys. Here's something that you'll get a kick out of; I printed the same photo that Steve had taken with the FX&, the GR62 and the g600. I showed all thre to my wife and then my daughter. I asked them to select the photo that was the sharpest and had the most accurate color. They both quickly and independently picked the g600 photo. They both thought that it was very obvious! It only took me a week to decide.:sad:
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Old Mar 30, 2005, 8:38 PM   #7
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I quickly charged the camera and ran an took some quick pictures before it got too dark. I love this camera! This is a 3X shot about 6:15 tonight.
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Old Mar 30, 2005, 9:41 PM   #8
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jdennen wrote:
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I quickly charged the camera and ran an took some quick pictures before it got too dark. I love this camera! This is a 3X shot about 6:15 tonight.
I think you may have forgot to post something. :O


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Old Mar 30, 2005, 9:51 PM   #9
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Jim,

I tried to attach it.What am I doing wrong? I went to browse located it on my HD and then sent it. I thought!

Jim
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Old Mar 30, 2005, 9:57 PM   #10
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I figured that is what probably happened.

You'll need to downsize your photos to attach them to posts here. There is a 250kb limit on file size, and you'll want it to be at a much lower resolution, too (so that it fits in the forum post without being too wide).

http://www.stevesforums.com/forums/v...amp;forum_id=2







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