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-   -   Looking for the best ultra-compact for me (https://forums.steves-digicams.com/what-camera-should-i-buy/87965-looking-best-ultra-compact-me.html)

Diggs Apr 26, 2006 1:16 PM

Hello,

Looking for and ultra-compact.

Background:My very much limited/beginner photographic experience/history include:

1)Canon Rebel slr: Had this during my Semester abroad, actually got into a little bit of photography, bits its novelty was tempered by the hassle associated with film

2)canon a80: Was happy with performance, but missed out on SO many good casual photos with friends because I couldn't pocket it. Don't want to do that again. Lcd was small and low res, so my comparison isn't great.


The majority of photos will be casual with friends at parties/nights out etc.where I'm not that concerned with image quality, but very concerned with easy pocketability The rest will be surf pics in the housing and on the all too frequent vacation. Will doa decent bitof viewing/showing the pics actually on the LCD.I'm on a grad student budget. Cost is a major factor but I can afford up to the $350 for the Sd630, provided its definitively better.

My main considerations are:

Must have underwater casing available, Size,image quality, performance, lcd size andvalue.

So far I'm considering the following and have gotten the following info:

Cannon SD630:

+ Good image quality,relatively lowshutter lag, amazing LCD (big +) high cool factor(incidental), slight familiarity with controls

-Largest ofthose considered, priciest ofthose considered, low battery time.

Canon SD 600

+Good image quality, relatively low shutter lag, High res lcd (same number of pixels as on the larger LCD) smallest height and width, slight familiarity with controls

-Pricey, doesn't seem as glamorous as its big brother now.

Casio s-600

+ Tiny size (big +), cool extra features, might not need very high image quality, most movie options, high cool factor(incidental)

- Small and lower res.LCD, Questions of image quality on this forum and cnet

Casio z-600

+ Best price and possibly value,good sized LCD. (allegedly) great shutter lag, superior battery life,seems to be only one with a truely quickburst mode

-Limited number of reviews, hard to verify claims or image/performance quality sincetheyare marketing based.



II'm having a little trouble deciding what is important. Hopefully you guys can validate/negate my impressions and provide some direction toward one of the cameras.

Sorry to be so long, but wanted to give the most complete info.
Any advice you can give is sincerely appreciated.


Hawgwild Apr 30, 2006 2:11 PM

Diggs.

Sorry if this is late. but wanted to put in my $.02. From what you indicate as to your needs/preferences in a cam, I see the choice as fairly straight-forward. Seeing as how the three cameras are spaced $50.00 apart pricewise, I would pick the Canon s630. It indeed is a cool looking camera, and it has the wide-lcd screen. You indicated you would be viewing the lcd, so there you go. My point is,( and I've been around the block a time or two), if its in your budget, get the one you will be happiest with for the longest period of time. You may have this camera for a few years, so enjoy!!

Robert

Diggs May 1, 2006 9:21 AM

Hawg,

No its not too late and thanks for the reply. I had basically come to your same conclusion, when another camera came in to the mix.



Sony DSC-T9:

+ImageStabiliztion (possible a Big+), Highest Resolution screen (231k over 2.5 in vs. 173k over 3.0in for the SD 630) Lower package price*

-Low flash range, Questions of performance on indoor flash shots in general, slightly slower shutter lag and burst (1.6fps vs. 2.1 fps on sd 630) Not as many shooting modes.

* The price for sony's waterproof housing is about $80 vs $160 for the canons. This is a definite purchase, so considered in the total price. Conon's case is dive proof, but I really have no need to go below the 10 feet of the sony.

Still trying to weight all these factors out. I want to find out more about the Sony in flash conditions, but it seems to have some serious advantages in other area. Also, I haven't had a chance to check out the s-600 in person; want to see if there really is that much of a size difference.

BruceMcL May 2, 2006 11:44 PM

The Sony T series cameras do not let in much light. Sure image stabilization can help but if you start with more light you've got a better chance. An aperrture of 3.5 is not enough for a general purpose camera in my opinion, even with IS.

Just for fun I'll mention another option, a Sony or Nokia cell phone!

http://john.henry.brown.home.comcast.net/K750/

Diggs May 9, 2006 11:00 PM

Those pics are pretty impressive for a cell phone.



Just to update, I ordered the Canon sd630 today. Talking with some of those more versed in underwater/surf photography, it seemed that the "water resistant" cases might not keep water out in the surf. That knocked out the sony.



THe 630 seemed to have the best features of the bunch. I think I'll have a lot of fun with the on cameras color effects.

Itsa shame that Casio never made a underwater housing for the Z 750. It would have beennice to have mpeg4 recording and the more advanced controls for if I really do progress in my photography.

Thanks to all who replied. Hopefully I'll have a very positive report to post soon.

shakim Jun 2, 2006 12:49 AM

Hey, I am in the same situation as you were. I am trying to find the best ultra portable and cool looking camera. I am trying to find a small camera that I can take everywhere and easy to use. I am deciding between the Sony DSC-T9 and the Canon S630. How is this camera (s630)? My main concern is picture quality and pictures in low light. Can you tell me the good and the bad with this camera? Would you buy something else if you had the choice? Thanx

starburstfun Jun 2, 2006 1:18 AM

Hi-- I have been looking at the exact same cameras as you, for the same reasons too :) Right now, I've eliminated the casios, becuase I am unable to see them in person where I live + limited reviews on the z600 (the one I favored), and the canons had crappy battery life, which is important to me. I really liked that the Sony t9 had the IS, good battery life and mpex vx movie mode (like mpeg4). My concern is the low light/flash performance. I'm about to purchase the T30, although it is fairly expensive (about $420 w/ shipping from an internet retailer.. much cheaper than in a store), it hasa much better zoom, and much better flash/low light.My only concern is the size. I went in and looked at the t9 and I lovehow tiny it is.. justlike a stack of cradit cards or a thin men's wallet. I won't be able to see the T30, because my rural town has limited in town selection :( .... Has anyone looked ator useda sony T30? I wondering how pocketable it is (jeans.. not as loose as mens!)in case I don't have a purse, etc. Also, how is the low light or red eye?

starburstfun Jun 2, 2006 1:18 AM

Hi-- I have been looking at the exact same cameras as you, for the same reasons too :) Right now, I've eliminated the casios, becuase I am unable to see them in person where I live + limited reviews on the z600 (the one I favored), and the canons had crappy battery life, which is important to me. I really liked that the Sony t9 had the IS, good battery life and mpex vx movie mode (like mpeg4). My concern is the low light/flash performance. I'm about to purchase the T30, although it is fairly expensive (about $420 w/ shipping from an internet retailer.. much cheaper than in a store), it hasa much better zoom, and much better flash/low light.My only concern is the size. I went in and looked at the t9 and I lovehow tiny it is.. justlike a stack of cradit cards or a thin men's wallet. I won't be able to see the T30, because my rural town has limited in town selection :( .... Has anyone looked ator useda sony T30? I wondering how pocketable it is (jeans.. not as loose as mens!)in case I don't have a purse, etc. Also, how is the low light or red eye?

Diggs Jun 2, 2006 10:23 PM

Shakim,

I have only had a chance to do a little bit of "actual photography" with canon so far. Of what I've done, I've been very pleased. Color looks properly saturated in variety ofsunlight conditions. Vivid when appropriate, but not too "Disneyland." Strong detail. So far low light(bar) snapshots have been pretty good. A little bit of washing out from the flash when close, but thats to be expected. Red eye seems to be a little better than most ultra-compacts I've seen. As far as the t-9, its natural low light ability wasn't as strong and there seemed to be more red-eye. Image stabilization was nice and helped compensate with a longer shutter speed, but I would suspect it would be trouble fore low light candids.

If I had the choice again, I'd still go with the 630. The only other camera I would consider would be the T-30 if I had an unlimited budget because 1: The screen did look nicer on the sony t-9 (though the t-30 has the same number of pixels spread over a bigger area.) 2. Reports are that they have gotten better natural low light capabillity and red-eye improvments. 3. image stabiliztion 4. apparently battery life that can be measure in weeks



Star, I will say that I haven't been disappointed with the batter life on my canon so far. I think the "average battery life" for ultracompacts has improved. Obviously "long enough" a relative factor.Withpowerup timebeing so fast now, I think the listed shot statistics can be stretched over a longer time period.

morffius Jun 6, 2006 8:14 PM

Hi, I am deciding between these two as well. My brother just purchasedthe sd630 and really likes it, but I like the form factor and IS of the Sony T9.* I think I am leaning towards the T9 as I want to take it out with me and the smallness would be quite welcome. The question I have then, is the image quality noticably worse on the T9? Im no professional, but will it be disappointing compared to the canon?thanks.


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