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Old Jan 30, 2006, 3:37 PM   #1
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I have a Kodak digital camera now but it seems to take for ever to snap a picture. With this I always end up with blurry photos of my kids. It dosen't help to have small children who don't want to stand still. I also use my camera to take still shots of products that my work make to use in catalogs. I'm just not sure of which camera would fit my needs.



Thanks for your help in advance.
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Old Jan 30, 2006, 5:56 PM   #2
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lildixie-

Are you now using a two stage shutter release technique. I you are not, please don't feel badly, a lot of folks are not aware of the technique.

Because any camera has some "housekeeping chores" to do before it can actually take the photo, you can actually help it with its "household chores." Here is what you do. (a) push down on the shutter release HALFWAY. (b) your camera now has the signal you want to take a photo.(c) as soon as any camera BOTHachieves sharp focus and sets the exposure, it will give you a signal. That signal is usually a beep, a light adjacent to your viewfinder, or a green dot, or shift in the focus barson your LCD. (d) Now, only after having completeda, b, and c,you are ready to take your photo. Dpressing your shutter release fully will release the shutter almost instantly.

Use this technique, and your present camera may give you great photos, like this!

MT
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Old Jan 30, 2006, 7:04 PM   #3
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Cameras have gotten much faster for both full autofocus lag and lag from half press. Imaging Resource has a page like this for all of the cameras he tests: http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/Z750/Z750DATA.HTM It is under "picky details" on one page reviews and "timings and sizes" for the multi page reviews. Narrow down your choices and compare the timings. Dpreview also has a good timing page but they don't test as many lower end cameras as Imaging Resource.

I take the majority of my shots with a pre-focus as mtclimber described. There are times when you want to grab a fast shot where full autofocus lag is significant though.

One feature I find necessary for kids is "continuous focus". If you half depress the shutter it fixes the focus and you often get a blurry photo if the target moves. Continuous focus continues to update the focus until you completely depress the shutter. Continuous focus uses a little extra battery power and most cameras with a selectable continuous focus default to not having it on – I think so they look better on battery tests which are done at default. My friend's Kodak V550 has continuous focus, so you might check your manual. Continuous focus helps when pressing the shutter all the way as well.


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Old Jan 31, 2006, 1:15 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tips. But I am looking to still replace my Kodak...It just won't turn on any more (not a battery problem). I'm just not sure which camera would be best to buy.
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Old Jan 31, 2006, 2:08 PM   #5
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lildixie-

Is there some confusion? I specifically suggested the Kodak V-530 or V-550, as an easy to use camera that offers a lot of value, is pleasingly small, and seems to meet your requirements.

I am happy to offer more info, if necessary.

MT
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Old Jan 31, 2006, 6:53 PM   #6
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mtclimber wrote:
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lildixie-

Is there some confusion? I specifically suggested the Kodak V-530 or V-550, as an easy to use camera that offers a lot of value, is pleasingly small, and seems to meet your requirements.

I am happy to offer more info, if necessary.

MT
lildixie94's complaint about the current Kodak is that it takes too long to take a photo. Full autofocus shutter lag isn't that great on the V550. While I agree that one should get in the habit of pre-focus, it still takes that much time to pre-focus before you can shoot. Continuous focus mode helps a lot, but there are much faster cameras for people who just want to push the button and get a shot.

I recommended the V550 to friends and they are happy with it. But they pose all of their people shots and don't have kids.

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Old Jan 31, 2006, 7:03 PM   #7
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I've got 2 young kids.. and I also shoot a lot of hockey and figureskating.

I've got the Canon S2 IS.. I LOVE it.. It's got a very fast processor.. Continous shots even are great. Set to AV mode it catches action very well. The flip out lcd has been an asset in things like preschool concerts, etc.. when I've been at the back of a room. I've been able to get some incredible angles.

The bonusof the S2 is the incredible video ittakes. There's ALWAYS moments with kids, that I don't happen tohave my camcorder with me. The stereo sound is great too.

TheIS (image stabillizer) is something a lot of cameras lack. Another plus.

It takes "AA" batteries.. VERY handy.

If you want similar options you could choose the A620 or A610.. These two are a bit more compact.. You'd be losing the stereo sound.. And the 10X zoom for the most part. I did own the 610 before I upgraded to the S2.. Love it aswell.. But I wanted a bit 'more' of a cam.

Hope that helps a bit.
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Old Jan 31, 2006, 7:44 PM   #8
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For a lot LESS $$ you should take a look at the Fuji S-5200. Honestly!

Here's the nuts and bolts. The MAXIMUM ISO on the, just recommended, Canon S-2 is only ISO 400. The Fuji S-5200 has a MAXIMUM ISO setting of 1600, or 4 times what the Canon S-2 is capable of under the very BEST conditions.

Young children move very quickly, you are going to need HIGH ISO speeds. My vote goes to the Fuji S-5200. Why, you might ask?

Because I own a Canon S-2, and it just cannot cut it! Where is my creditability? Well, I have written three digital camera books, and I am an Instructor that trains over 10,000+ people every year. Want samples, I have provided them already. Did you notice those10 years and under football photos? Yep, they're mine.

Let the other posters in this threadprovide a few sample photos, for some solid evidence/proof. How about some of those already mentioned ice skating photos, please?

MT
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Old Jan 31, 2006, 8:45 PM   #9
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Though at this point I don't have time to sort through photos.. There are hundreds and thousands of examples online from this camera. In addition comments from hundreds of users.

I've had mine for about a month.. at that point it's not logical to have numerous photos sitting here ready to post, though what I have taken I have been happy with.

This person is asking for opionions of different camera users and owners. You are more than welcome to post your photos. I have enough time to reply to posts.. If I have time at a later point to post photos I will. As I type, my 2 year old is on my lap.



Here is a link of a LARGE number of S2 shots.. You can also search that site for other models. It will give you a FAIR examples of different cameras, under different conditions and different levels of expertise.



http://www.pbase.com/cameras/canon/powershot_s2_is
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Old Jan 31, 2006, 8:45 PM   #10
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I would like to see a good review on the Fuji E5200 with some high ISO shots. Not little posts but some full sized shots. Fuji is putting ISO 1600 on all of their cameras, but only the F10/11 so far has been able to use that without excessive noise. The S9000 isn't too good over ISO400 and the Z1 is worse. If it has the high ISO capabilities of the F10 I agree it would truly be a great camera for kids. Stabilization doesn't help at all for subject motion but high ISO does. The E5200 sensor has a higher density than the F10 even though the Mp is lower.
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