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Old Sep 23, 2005, 6:40 PM   #1
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I need a digital camera strictly for ebay pics.

When I need vacation pics: I still trust my old Sony Pentax 35MM.

Based on that use only: publishing pics on the web, which camera should I buy please?

I have these features in mind:

A Great macro: so I can get good close pics of serial numbers off of motherboards, VGA cards, etc. I have some old jewelry, and coins that I need good pics of small objects.

I also need the usual things we'd all buy a camera for: taking a pic of a new sealed box of knives, new, but unopened shredders in the boxes. Nothing special I don't think.

Sometimes outdoors, mostly indoors, hardly ever at night.

I don't care much for the forums atObey (sellers would understand), but I have asked this there with little results, and the usual Flaming remarks.

I think the only advice I've been given has been:

-- Mega pixels above 3 are of NO use to you for that

--The only resolution you can use there is 640X480

Is this true?

Personal likes, dislikes:

Like:

-Large display

-Easy to use, simple instructions

-Standard batteries (like AA's), rechargeable or otherwise: something I can get easily.

-Great macros

-Not tooo small, or I'll lose it

-Takes generic memory cards

Dislikes:

-anything over $300, which I suspect is a waste of $$ anyway.

-anything that takes REALLY proprietary memory cards, batteries


Models I have l looked at & kinda like:

Sony DCS-W5

Canon Power Shot A510, and 520

Fuji F345

Any advice, suggestions: Much Appreciated to a REAL digi-pic newbie!



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Old Sep 24, 2005, 4:17 AM   #2
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I've currently got a Canon A20 and have used that for taking pics of coins and the detail has come out good. However the A20 is an old camera of 2 MP and a macro distance of 15 cm. I'm looking to upgrade to a Canon A620 this has a macro distance of just 1 cm and has 7 MP, this is probably going to be a little more than you want to pay. Therefore I'd say any of the canon upto the A620 are going to suitable for you including any of the other modern digital cameras out there from a decent manufacturer.
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 7:26 AM   #3
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Thanks for the reply!

If I just HAD to run out & buy one: I'd probably get the Canon A520, or the Fuji FinePix 345.

I like the Canon over the Fuji simply because it's got the knob on top that seemingly allows one to adjust to different settings easily.

However: in a real life test (on the small LCD screen, anyway) the Fuji wholloped the Sony hands down, and beat the Canon by a hair on macro.

Your opinion, please? Or anyone else who has dig camera experience.
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 7:49 AM   #4
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Moderator Note:

I changed the text color in your original post so that other memberscould read it. The text color you selected is not readable using some of the "Board Themes" here. I currently use the Default Theme (My Account, Preferences, Board Themes, Default).

This is what it looked like to me using the Default theme (Shades is probably what you're using, since that's the Theme you get when first joining, since it more closely matches the main site).



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Old Sep 24, 2005, 8:01 AM   #5
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I kinda thought that looked odd.

I see that black background, white text a LOT on gaming forums, so I thought: Oh Well?

I just changed it to default & Thanks for the tip!

Forum Newbie.

Digital Optics: clue-less, but willing to learn!

Great site: BTW.
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 8:11 AM   #6
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GratefulFred wrote:
Quote:
I have these features in mind:

A Great macro: so I can get good close pics of serial numbers off of motherboards, VGA cards, etc. I have some old jewelry, and coins that I need good pics of small objects.
Lighting will be just as (if not more) important compared to the camera.

Shutter speeds will be very slow indoors without a flash, so good lighting and a tripod is recommended for indoor macros.

Although you can use a flash, you can often get unwanted glare/reflections, so a diffused light source is better.

One "canned' solution for lighting is here (although there are a number of ways to produce a homemade solution, too).

http://www.clouddome.com/

Note that they also have a tutorial on their web site (but, it assumes you'll be using a Nikon Coolpix Swivel Bodied model like the Coolpix 990, 995, or 4500). It tells you how to setup the camera for the best macro performance (waiting until the macro icon turns colors when the zoom position is at the macro "sweet spot" (something these Nikon models have available).

Quote:
I think the only advice I've been given has been:
Quote:

-- Mega pixels above 3 are of NO use to you for that

--The only resolution you can use there is 640X480

Is this true?


Well, it's true that you probably wouldn't need to publish images more than about 640x480. But, a little more resolution can be good so you can crop a photo using software (removing the outside edges, leaving only the desired portion in the center). For Ebay use, this could be handy if you didn't buy a camera with a macro mode that allowed you to "fill the frame" as much.

Quote:
Personal likes, dislikes:
Quote:

Like:

-Large display

-Easy to use, simple instructions

-Standard batteries (like AA's), rechargeable or otherwise: something I can get easily.

-Great macros

-Not tooo small, or I'll lose it

-Takes generic memory cards



Well, there's really no such thing as "Generic" memory cards. You'll see a variety of types being used. The most common is CompactFlash. The next most popular is probably Secure Digital. Then, you'll find cameras usingSony Memory Stick (used only by Sony and a few Konica-Minolta models), and xD-Picturecard (used only by Fuji and Olympus).

CompactFlash is going to give you the most "bang for the buck" (megabytes/dollar), followed by Secure Digitaland Sony Memory Stick (with xD Picturecards tending to be the most expensive).

As for batteries, I personally prefer proprietary Lithium Ion batteries (I hate fumbling with the polarity of multiple AA batteries inserting them into chargers and cameras).It's just easier using a battery that only fits one way. If you shop around, Generic Lithium Ion batteries are relatively inexpensive.

But, I would never pick a camera based on memory or battery type (other factors are more important to me).

I'd suggest looking at finding a used Nikon Coolpix 990, 995, or 4500 for Macro purposes.

IMO, these models (swivel bodied Nikon Coolpix models) havethe best macro mode in the business. They can fill the frame with an object around 2/3" across with virtually no distortion (since the "sweet spot" for the lens in macro mode is at about half zoom).

They also have manual exposure and aperture priority modes (so you can increase depth of field by using smaller apertures). Cameras without this ability will choose a larger aperture in lower light, decreasing depth of field compared to these Nikons (not as much of the subject in focus as you get further away from your focus point).

Ebay is probably a good source for these models (they are all discontinued now).

BTW, see this post from Steve. Many of the photos you see in the reviews herewere taken with a Swivel Bodied Coolpix model (990, 995, 4500)

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

BTW, I've owned two of theswivel bodied Nikon models myself (Nikon Coolpix 950, Coolpix 990). I still have the 950. These cameras were selling like hotcakes at about $1000 when new. The macro photos from them are just as nice today as they were then. ;-) Now, you can find them at small fraction of that used. I'd go with a 990 over a 950 (not for the megapixels, asthe 990 and later swivel bodied models have more control of available apertures).

If you want to see how detailed the closeups from one of these cameras can be,here is a photo of a cointhat Steve tookwith a Nikon Coolpix 990 (straight from the camera with nomodifications or cropping):

http://www.steves-digicams.com/nikon...2/DSCN0076.JPG

Note that this photo was taken using a shutter speed of over 1/2 second (so, it would not have been possible without a tripod, given that the aperture was "stopped down" for greater Depth of Field and a flash was not used).


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Old Sep 24, 2005, 8:34 AM   #7
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I'll have to study this some to absorb it: The consequences of a mis-spent youth. :whack:

That final pic of the coin: HOLY COW!!

That's how you sell stuff on ebay: quality pics like that add 100% to what you get.

Extremely Cool, Thanks!

Are you saying that the $200 -300 one's are a waste of $$ ??

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Old Sep 24, 2005, 8:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Are you saying that the $200 -300 one's are a waste of $$ ??


No. But, you can pick up a used Nikon Coolpis 990, or 995 for that much or less. So, from my perspective, I'd go with models that I consider to have the "best" macro modes (with aperture priority available to use smaller apertures for greater depth of field, and a lens that will have virtually no barrel or pincushion distortion shooting macros since the "sweet spot" for these Nikons is at around half zoom). Most other models force you to use one lens extreme or the other (widest or longest zoom setting) for closer focusing in macro mode.

The Swivel Body design for these Nikon models is also very nice for macros (allowing you to keep the lens pointing at your subject while viewing the LCD from a different position). They also have the ability to set a custom white balance to match the temperature of the lighting (many cameras only have presets available).

You probably don't need a camera with a macro mode that good for Ebay use (since you can crop a photo to leave only the desired portion in the center). BTW, digital zoom is like cropping and then enlarging again, so it degrades an image as you use more Digital Zoom. I keep Digital Zoom disabled on my cameras that have it so that I don't accidently use it.

If your primary use for a camera is macros (and it sounds like you want a dedicated camera for closeups), then I'd strongly recommend these models (Coolpix 990, 995, 4500). They are available at pretty darn cheap prices on Ebay in used condition (since newer models have higher megapixels, more advanced movie modes, faster shot to shot times, etc., Digital Cameras don't tend to hold their value very well).

Again, lighting (combined with a steady camera using a tripod or other device) is probably your biggest key to getting good macros. You can also expect that you'll need to practice to get good shots (the photographer's skill is a big part of the equation).

You *can* use a flash for macros (and Steve comments on how well a camera "throttles down" the flash output for closeups in each camera's review conclusion section). But, you tend to get a lot of unwanted glare and reflections using flash (or a non-diffused light source).

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Old Sep 24, 2005, 10:23 AM   #9
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JimC wrote:
Quote:

If your primary use for a camera is macros (and it sounds like you want a dedicated camera for closeups), then I'd strongly recommend these models (Coolpix 990, 995, 4500).
I totaly agree with JimC. I still have the 950 (2 MPs only) and even use it more often than my D7i
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Old Sep 24, 2005, 10:29 AM   #10
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KCan wrote:
Quote:
JimC wrote:
Quote:

If your primary use for a camera is macros (and it sounds like you want a dedicated camera for closeups), then I'd strongly recommend these models (Coolpix 990, 995, 4500).
I totaly agree with JimC. I still have the 950 (2 MPs only) and even use it more often than my D7i
Yep, I've still got a 950, too (I just never have been able to part with it). I wish I'd have kept the 990 I owned at one time, too.




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