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Old Dec 29, 2005, 1:00 PM   #1
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Hi All:

I'm in the market for a new camera and could use some help. :?


The camera I am interested in needs to have a very good macro setting. I figure a 10cm or less would be good (I enjoy taking pictures of watches).

I also want to use the camera to take pics ofsome fast movingkids so a relatively low shutter lag would be good.

Finally, I'd really like to spend less than 300 USD and under 200 USD would be even better.


Any suggestions/recommendations would be greatly appreciated. To that extent, some source suggestions would also be wonderful. Please email me at [email protected]. com.

Thanks

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Old Dec 29, 2005, 7:12 PM   #2
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Crazy-

How does this photo look to you. It was taken with a rather unusual camera, The Pentax MX4. It might be worth taking a look at. It can focus on items resting against the lens mount.

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Old Dec 30, 2005, 5:49 AM   #3
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Great photo! The detail really comes through. However, I think I need a camera that is a bit more mainstream in terms of looks and function.
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Old Dec 30, 2005, 6:28 AM   #4
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The Konica Minolta X60 offers most features you would expect of a compact camera- 5mp, 3x optical zoom and a huge 2.5" LCD. It stands out with its 5cm macro mode, and would pick up the detail you desire nicely.

Also reasonably cheap
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Old Dec 30, 2005, 9:19 AM   #5
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10cm is not a sufficient close focus distance for watch faces and movements. The closest focus on most cameras is rated at wide angle and that is the smallest area you can capture. As you zoom the closest focus distance increases faster than the zoom. Someone on the Casio board started a thread that his Casio Z750 wasn't sufficient for pocket watch movements, and that has a 10cm or around 4 inches closest focus at wide angle. That goes to 20 inches at 3X zoom which is common. There are a few exceptions but most are out of your price range.

The X60 that tennisforums mentioned is somewhat unique. When you go to super macro it locks at an intermediate zoom. That gives you more room for external lighting and cuts the distortion. All cameras should do that IMO. The downside of the X60 is that it doesn't throttle the flash down well for macro and there is no flash intensity adjustment. Dave at Imaging Resource suggests putting a tissue over the flash. You get better macro pictures with external lighting with almost any camera. Folded lens models like the X60 usually do OK for macro flash because the lens isn't in the way – too bad they didn't design the software a little better. But most cameras with super macro capability get shadows from the lens with flash and external lighting is difficult with the lens so close. In your price range the X60 is probably worth considering.


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Old Dec 30, 2005, 9:49 AM   #6
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Thank you. I currently own a Vivitar 3.1. I think it takes respectable watch photos given than I paid 85 USD for it. I do not use the camera for taking detailed watches (e.g., movements) but just close in shots of the dial/face and watch. I use external light sources that I diffuse by placing the watch in a white trash can. While not the high quality of some of the photos I've seen here, I think the photos are faily good.

The problem with the camera, however, is the long time it takes to snap a photo. It takes a good two to three seconds to take a regular outdoor photo, which is too long when trying to photograph a four year old. The watch also has plastic lenses that seem to scratch easily. I guess what I am looking for is camera that balances my desire to take watch photo with my need to take quicker shots of the family.

I've considered the Coolpix 4600 but I wanted to explore all my options prior to taking the plunge. I'll take a look at that X60 but any other advise would be great as well.
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Old Dec 30, 2005, 2:52 PM   #7
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Crazy4watches-

Here is another sample done with the Fiji S-9000. You could use the Fuji F-10, F-11, S-5200, or S-9000, to get similiar results. The lighting on your sample photo was very effective. The sample photo was taken with just existing light from a window at ISO 200.

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Old Dec 31, 2005, 1:39 AM   #8
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Mt Climber, my Fuji S5200 isn't that good for macro shots. It does its job well, but I wouldn't buy it primarily for close-ups.
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