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Old May 22, 2005, 11:00 PM   #1
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Like many of you, many many hours have been expended in narrowing down choices for the purchase of a digital camera.

I have a well accessorized Canon Elan IIe which does not get as much (especially the last few years) usage due to the convenience of carrying around a smaller, lighter, less expensive, more expendableand non-film based digital camera. My current camera, a 2000 vintage Casio 3500 is simply reaching the end of its reliable functioning.

I am very interested in high resolution for printing larger images (8*10) and having the luxury of being able to print an occassional larger picture. Likewise, I am interested in higher resolution so that cropped images will also look good.

This is not to say thatI MUST have the largest resolution camera I can find. I know that quality optics, low noise,accurate color, good ergonomics, manual overrides and function-extending accessories are also an asset.

I am not driven by MPEG movie abilities since I have a digital camcorder and honestly never bothered to engage the movie functions in the digital camera I have used extensively over the last 5 years.

BTW, I am not ruling out the Rebel XT for which I have some nice USM lenses and a flash (from my Elan IIe)- but Iknow that given its size and accessories, that I would not have it with me as often as a smaller Advanced camera. I knowthat Iwill be giving up some quality if I walk away from the XT, but if I don't carry it, the moments are lost too. I may buy the XT after all, but at this juncture, I want to get some resolve with the Advanced d-SLR like options.

The G6 seems to be very well liked and rated all over the place. Its a capable competitor for low light conditions. Yes it is a 7.1 megapixel camera versus some of the 8 megapixel options out there, but given its other traits, it appears to be a serios contender.

Likewise, I have bounced around some 8-megapixel Advanced dSLR-like cameras. I paid attention to the Nikon Coolpix 8700, 8800, the Konica Minolta A2 (or A200...another unclear race for me), and the Olympus C-7070 and C-8080. From this bunch, I keep going back to the Olympus C-8080 and not sure if I can walk away from the KM models.

I like and use the manual overrides, but given the sponteneity of a lot of my shooting (especially with a 2-year old), I spend the majority of my shooting in Auto modes. I would have used and like manual focusing quite a bit, but almost never bothered to do so on my current digicam because it isn't convenient or quick to do so. Honestly, being able to manually focus (and zoom) via the lens rather than electronic buttons or embedded menu options would be very nice. Obviously, since given my choices, not any one meets all of thisemanual criterea, it must be weighed against image quality and flexibility.

Finally, I shoot everything. I shoot indoor with onboard flash (the hotshoe on the G6 will handle my current Canon flash- a money saver, but the other choices also have hotshoes which I feel strongly about in my next camera choice). I shoot outdoor, in bright light, low light. I like wide angle/panoramic landscape shots and macro photography (I enjoy nature photography). Most of my subjects are people, but not many in portriat. Formerly (and currently) I have not utilized continuous advanced modes (I am not a sports fanatic, but in a few years- maybe beyond the life of my next purchase, I may have a child in school sports).

I hope that I have offered enough of a mindset, preferences and requirements that a meaningful discussion can ensue. I know that it sounds like I should move towards the XT given the lens and flash flexibility, but again with a 2 year in tow (and another one coming in a few months) it has been less convenient than ever to grab that bigger camera bag.



Your feedback would be appreicated!
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