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Old Oct 4, 2005, 12:38 AM   #11
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langleau wrote:
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Well there you go...... did not think to check the Danish site out .

Certainly proves that you are more thanspot on with your advice and that you are a lotsmarter than the average photo bear out there.
That's from spending too many hours looking at images from cameras (not quite 24/7 but sometimes close to it). :-)

Also, see the post from Steve in this thread.Many of the photos you see in the reviews herewere taken with a Swivel Bodied Coolpix model (990, 995, 4500). Steve has probably reviewed more cameras than anyone around over the years. So, when someone like Steve uses one for his own closeups, you can bet it's a pretty good tool for the job:

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

I also mention this in the other thread I pointed you to. But, I'll repeat it here:

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, even though they're selling for a small fraction of that price now. ;-)

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 an old 3MPNikon Coolpix 990 (straight from the camera with nomodifications or cropping):

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

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With the photo editingwe have beenusingMicrosoft DigitalImaging Suite but I know that there areother programs out there that do a farbetter job.........at the risk of our friendship and taking up to much of your valuabletime - any suggestions?
I use lots of different software myself (and sometimes two or more products on the same image). For simple tasks like cropping and resizing, more often than not, I'll use the free stuff like irfanview (see http://www.irfanview.com and make sure to download the free plugins, too). Chances are, the MS product you're using has better cropping tools, though. I like irfanview because it's fast to load, as well as having decent algorithms for resizing images.

We have a dedicated Editors (Photoshop, etc.) Forum you may want to visit here.

You'll see lots of "favourite" editors (Paint Shop Pro, Photoshop, Photoshop Elements, etc.), as well as free software like Irfanview, Picasa and more.

Chances are, the Microsoft product you've got is fine for your use.

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Is there some small way that we can reimburse you for your very kind advice?
Sure. If you find what you've learned here to be useful, pass it on to others that may need help, too. We are all learning to take better photos, especially me (it's a never ending process). You'll find the forum members here to be quite friendly. We all try to learn from each other.

But, you may want to wait until you are getting good results before offering thanks.;-) Practice and skill is the key to getting better photos, provided your tools are up to the job. There is no "magic camera" that takes great photos in all conditions without some user input.

Also, take some of what you hear on forums with a grain of salt. Most opinions you see are going to be biased, including mine. I'd be willing to be that if you polled all of the forum members on here right now, very few of them would recommend the cameras I just did. For the most part, they'd probably recommend the one they are using now, and think it's macro mode was "tops".

But, most reputable professional reviewerswould agree that these models (Nikon Coolpix 990, 995, 4500) have the best macro mode in the business. It's too bad that they're all discontinued now. I've owned two of them myself (Coolpix 950 and Coolpix 990). I still have the old 950.

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Pitty that you don't sell cameras.
Well, make sure to visit often and when you're ready to upgrade to a newer model, check out the reviews here on the main site at http://www.steves-digicams.com

Even though we don't sell cameras here, wehave a Shopping Guide that may come in handy. But, make sure to check out any vendor thoroughly using a tool like http://www.resellerratings.com (since there are a lot of scam artists around).


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Old Oct 4, 2005, 8:41 PM   #12
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Just to let you know where we are at.

Purchased a brand new, factory sealed with 12month warranty Nikon Coolpix 4500 from a retailer in Australia this morning for $550.00 Aust. roughly $350.00 US.

We think that this is a pretty good buy as most of the other camera retailers within Australia are selling them from between $850.00 to $1100.00 Australian new -even though thatthis model is no longer in production.

We were going to buy a refurbished or 2nd hand Coolpixcamera from the US but decided that by the time that we paid all the customs, freight fees etc that it would be just as cheap to buy the newer one here in Australia (couldn't find any second hand or reconditioned ones here in Aussie).

The other thing that I was going to ask is do you think that a Nikon macroCool-light SL-1 attachmentwould help with lightingwhen photographing gemstones and jewelry? .......... I can also pick one of these up fairly cheaply.

Will let you know how we get on with the new Nikon Coolpix.

Thanks again for all your help.

Suzanne & Allan.


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Old Oct 4, 2005, 9:08 PM   #13
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Thanks for the update.

That's an outstanding price on a Coolpix 4500 (at least the last time I priced one new, and the image quality hasn't gone down, just because it happens to be discontinued). ;-)

As for the Coollight SL-1..they're running around $100 USD here, and I have not personally used one. If you can get one cheap enough, you may want to give it a try. But, most reports I've seen say that they don't work as well for highly reflective subjects like jewely (you maysee LED reflections using this light with sometypes of subjects).
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Old Oct 5, 2005, 12:40 AM   #14
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Back again,

Do you think that we need to purchase any additional lenses or filters to go with this camera? or wouldusing it stand alone be the best when photographing gemstones and jewelry in macro?

Cheers Suzanne & Allan.
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Old Oct 5, 2005, 12:56 AM   #15
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I'd use it just the way it comes in the box (after charging the battery and putting a memory card in it).

I seriously doubt you'd need anything extra in the way of lenses for it for your purpose. It can fill the frame with an object around 2/3" across without any add-on lenses + for auction listings, you can crop if you need to with an editor (trimming away the outside edges leaving the portion in the middle).

You *can* buy addon lenses for it (andsomecan give you more magnifcation for closeups). However, anytime you add more glass to the front of a lens, you can introduce some distortion or other problems.

I don't see the need.for it with a camera like this one for auction listings (or for that matter, most any print use either.

You've got 4 Megapixels to work with, and your images are likely going to be relatively small in comparison when you post them. That gives you some room for cropping if you ever needed more ability than the camera has for full size images.

When in macro mode, make sure to use the zoom until the flower (macro) icon changes color, too. That will be the lens "sweet spot".

If it's the wrong distance to your subject to get the desired framing with your lightbox, then use a different zoomsetting (it'll still work at other focal lengths with macro focus selected) and/orcrop.

One thing you may find useful is an AC adapter if you're going to be using it for extended periods. But, I'd probably use just the battery and see if that suffices first (after it's been used enough to discharge and recharge a few times, since new batteires tend to need breaking in some). Then decide if you'll need a spare battery or AC adapter for it.

IOW, I'd give it a good workout and understand more of the cameras strengths and limitations before spending money on stuff you may not ever need. ;-)


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