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Old Jun 6, 2005, 10:53 PM   #1
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I'm looking for a very compact, take everywhere, camera. So far I've looked at the Canon SD400 and SD500 in person. I liked the appearance and feel of the SD400 better, however I realise the SD500 takes better pictures and has a better flash. I'm undecided whether that is worth an extra $150.

Including the two Canons, my options seem to be:
Canon SD400
Canon SD500
Casio EX-Z750
Fuji Z1
Nikon Coolpix S1
Nikon Coolpix S2
Kodak V550

Of the images I've seen so far on the web, the Canon SD400 seemed adequate, with the SD500 a step above. I haven't been overly impressed with the Z750 images I've seen, for some reason. The Z1 pictures have looked "alright" and I seem to remember the Nikon pictures to have been fairly impressive, although I can't remember.

I was all set to go for a Canon, until reading about the LCD breakeages and overall durability questionability.

In order of importance, my preferances are:
1) Image quality must not be poor
2) Form/size
3) I like the idea of the wealth of features on the Casio, but I'm unsure how much I would use them
4) Speed
5) LCD quality (size, resolution, use in sun)
6) Ease of use

I still like the Canons, and for some reason the Casio is uninspiring. I haven't looked much into the Nikons, but that may be because they don't seem to be mentioned often. The Kodak looks intriguing.

What do you think my best options would be?

I appreciate it,
Josh
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Old Jun 7, 2005, 2:45 AM   #2
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you have something against sony? i'd included the latest p-series in the short list as well. in terms of features sony is good. except maybe for it's propriety (read expensive) MS
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Old Jun 7, 2005, 7:33 PM   #3
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Nothing against Sony, I've just found that I can almost always find a product comparable to Sony for less from another manufacturer. At about $350, the P200 does look like a good deal, however it's a bit bulky looking to me.

I sent an email to Kodak asking about the release date for the V550, and didn't get a straight answer, so it looks like the V550 is off the list.

Josh
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Old Jun 8, 2005, 1:52 PM   #4
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Well Kodak doesn't know when the V550 will be released, so it is off the list. I'm also scratching the two Nikons since I haven't heard much about them, and don't particularly like the way they look. The Z1 is off the list too - it just doesn't really do it for me.

That leaves the two Canons and the Casio. I'm leaning toward the SD400 as I have handled it in store and I liked it. I handled the SD500 also, and it felt more cumbersome, although still well built. I'm unsure how the Casio would compare.

Image quality-wise, the SD400 is at the bottom of the heap. The SD500 pictures that I have seen look good, probably the clearest of the bunch. The Casio pictures, like the SD400, seem a little fuzzy - maybe slightly out of focus? The colors on the SD500 seem slightly better than the SD400, while the Casio colors are very vibrant. In comparing the Casio pictures to pictures taken by the F10 (simply because it is known to take good pictures) the colors do not match. The F10 colors look much more like the Canon cameras, leading me to believe that the vibrant shades produced by the Casio are not as accurate.

It basically comes down to this: SD400 feels nicest, although both Canons feel well built. Unsure on Casio, although the built has been reported to be very good. SD500 produces significantly better pictures than the SD400, but is it worth the extra $100 and tradeoffs in terms of size and quality? Casio somewhere between the two Canons as far as picture quality.

I need to make a decision by today, and am still unsure! If anyone could offer some further advice I'd appreciate it.

Thanks,
Josh
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Old Jun 8, 2005, 4:04 PM   #5
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Canon SD500 it is. It seems to take the best pictures.
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Old Jun 9, 2005, 4:15 AM   #6
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it's a good choice, just look after the lcd!
oh and nikon s2 is not out yet either, if that makes it easier ;p
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Old Jun 9, 2005, 6:26 AM   #7
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I came to all the same conclusions about choosing this sort of camera. 2 things though. The SD500 pictures all look amazing but they all all taken in bright sunlight. Apparently it does less well in non perfect conditions. Also the colour saturation and contrast settings can be changed on the Casio, here's an example of that:

http://home.comcast.net/~zumbari/Gal...tion/index.htm

I hadn't noticed that the Casio was any worse than the Canon for image quality apart from the saturation.
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