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Old Jul 26, 2006, 2:34 PM   #11
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I apologize to all. I just moved over 14,000 digital images to their new home on my brand new 500gb drive, as a result, the Russian photos all got filed together and mixed up. All in all, I thinkit is a pretty good Canon G-3 photo.

I am sure you have everything filed more precisely. Share some of your tips with me.

MT
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Old Jul 26, 2006, 3:21 PM   #12
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give each 'shoot' the generic file name <xxxx-xxxx description (x)>

eg. <2006-0726 sample (1)>

<4 digit year - 2 dig mo 2 dig day brief description> all your shots will then be shown in default chronocological order

2003_1018 Lake Cabin Web (Medium).jpg



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Old Jul 26, 2006, 4:23 PM   #13
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John-

Thanks so much for the tip.

MT
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Old Jul 28, 2006, 2:44 AM   #14
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Still looking, thinking, considering and reading. I was talking with my wife last evening and indicated I was seriously considering getting another camera and letting our son use the SD500 when we go to the Baltic. I said I was looking at the Pentax SLR with a couple of zoom lenses - to which my wife replied (she is short 5', Italian and grew up in the Bronx) - Your going to trade your go anywhere pocket camera for a brick around your neck and we are going to be toting 10lbs of camera equipment around Europe, and it going to take you 5 minutes to take a picture - Your out of your mind.

So another question - the Canon S3IS appears to be a good middle step between what I am using now and the dSLR - I do still like the idea of the Pentax K100D - however, as I said starting this thread, the size and convience of the SD500 is very appealing.

The last few evenings I have been stitching the images from our last Alaska trip 2 weeks ago, where I took about 2,500 images. I could have used filters with the low clouds and grayness. Image stabilization would have been a big help on a number of the shots. A longer lens would have been welcome for shots of the eagles, puffins, false penguins, otters and seals. Better/faster burst would have helped with a series of whale shots. I do like the movie mode. The colors were not a vibrant as last year (but it was a lot more sun last year too). The SD500 takes great pictures, however (I know I am preaching to the quire) that there are limitations and I am seeing them more often.

So in your opinions - how good is the S3 - I would really like some quality shots of the sights - especially in St. Petersburg - the images are stunning.
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Old Jul 29, 2006, 3:46 PM   #15
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interested- please forgive the ramblings. As you will see, I am indeed the master of the obvious. I know I have thrown out things that you didn't 'ask' in your original post and you've probably already thought all of this through beyond my musings....

Here's throwing outthoughts from someone who doesn't have any experience as a 1) world traveler, 2) cruiser,3) extensively experiencedor talentedDSLR owner or teacher, or 4) anexperiencedDSLR or KM 5d or Canon S3IS owner.....

A friend has used the Canon S2IS for taking zoomed action shots of her husband speedboat racing and has been very pleased. My friend to whom I recommended a Canon S3IS for his Hawaii trip took some great photos and is very happy and he is not an experienced photographer. My dad has the KM 7d and says it is heavy (though I knowthe 5d is lighter if you could find one), but Sony support seems to be lacking for the KM folks (so I have read). The higher MP new IS Sony DSLR posters report the expected increase in noise on the same size sensor (in my very limited reading). Likewise, I am reading about delighted new Pentax DSLR owners. Likewise, I have seen many illustrations that overcome 'known' issues in most all models and post processing is a rich option. You may want to read the specific forums here for the various brands as the brand owners have a lot of good info, practical advice and experience. I have a Nikon D50 2 lens kit which I love, but if I had it to do over again I'd go with IS in the body and one comprehensive lens for walk-around....(ok, maybe, cuz I do love the Nikon).

For the money, might you be able to do the unthinkable and buy the S3IS AND the Pentax? If you have already contemplated the DSLR option as far as packing and size for a trip, you might also have contemplated a camera bag/backpack and the little S3IS (or your existing p&s) would easily fit in a smartly chosen bag that could hold a DSLR, a few lenses, and miscellaneous.

Lastly, you mention 'indoor shots'....and I am loosely paraphrasing the wise ones on this forum in various threads who have answered other posts - depending on the 'indoor shots' you might find a DSLR beats a p&s (in general)provided the body and lenses are up to the task. However, as this question has been illustrated and debated in other posts you may want to check out the examples. MT always has excellent illustrations of DSLR and p&s in most all conditions and places. (Although I think MT could give great illustrations of a wallyworld disposable camera :P).

As MT said, you did the absolute right thing going to handle them. It makes a big difference. Likewise, do the same for a contemplated p&s.

Another thought to prove or rebut your wife's concernsis to make a purchase where you know you can make a return and plan a 'mini' trip. Buy the DSLR and 'pretend' you're on 'the' trip. I think you would know almost without a doubt if DSLR or p&s (either your existing or another) is the route you want to go for traveling. I still use my old 2 MP Olympus p&s with no optical zoom sometimes at home or if I need to grab a quick thrown in my purse camera for a possible photo that day (work birthday lunch at a restaurant where having a decent picture is better than having no picture at all). For me, I rarely travel, but for my upcomingdriving trip to NM is about the picture taking... in the sense that other than having fun along the way with my husband what I will enjoy will be lugging the camera and etc. around and playing photographer....I enjoy having something to 'do'.

Aside from the above ramblings, there are small (holster??) bags that are designed to carry a DSLR and walkaround lens and miscellaneous, so you might end up with a walkaround bag and a luggage bag.

You have the advantage of existing knowledge and are a quick learner. I think if you get a DSLR and work on getting experience, you will defeat the learning curve to your satisfaction for great photos. You will even need to 'learn' a new p&s to get ready for your trip.

Also, don't forget you will need multiple memory cards and a way to store the photos until you get back to home base.

Hey, I'm just the peanut gallery. Having the folks here at Steve's is like having the 'ultimate' dynamic, interactive, illustratedencyclopedia at your fingertips.

Good luck!

M
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Old Jul 29, 2006, 5:34 PM   #16
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Interested-

Please take a look at my camera bag, which also does double duty as my purse as well. It is just 12" wide, and 5" from front to back, and 8" tall. In it you will find the dollowing items:

Pentax DS camera equipped with the 18-55mm kit lens with Skylight filter

The Pentax 50-200mm telephoto lens with Skylight filter

The Tamron 28-300mm telephoto lens with Skylight filter

An accessory slave flash to extend my Flash Range to 40 feet

Extra SD cards/chips

A Fuji F-30 camera for quick low light grab photos

A Panasonic TZ-1 10X camera for quick daytime grab telephoto shots

And all of my purse items and our checkbooks, and our passports.

So if you are in a hurry to get the photo you use the Fuji F-30 or the TZ-1, or your own Canon SD 500 could take the one of thos camera's places. If you have more time you use the Pentax DS, or in your case the Pentax K100D.

Interested, please keep this in mind, you do not have to take both telephoto lenses with you and you will not have to be carrying a woman's normal purse items, so your camera bag will be even lighter.

You have posted several times that your upcoming trip to St Petersburg will be, "the trip of a lifetime." If that is so, you should have the right equipment to record that trip of a lifetime. A Canon S-3 will cost in the neighborhood of $400. Yes, it is a good camera, but it is no competition for the Pentax K100D. When most folks stay with an ultra zoom for one last time, instead of making the switch to a DSLR camera, that "ultrazoom honeymoon" usually lasts from just 6 months to a year, and they are back in line looking for a DSLR camera again. The choice is yours alone.

I just wanted to show you that you are carrying only one camera bag that contains all your gear, and it is not very big at that. And there is even a slot made for your old dependable Canon SD 500. Melt made a lot of sense in her post. You might want to re-read it.

MT/Sarah
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Old Jul 29, 2006, 10:29 PM   #17
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melt1109 and mtclimber

I have to thank both of you for your most gracious suggestions. Overall, I do like the SD500, its capabilities as compared to its physical size are tremendous, it fits in both my shirt and pants pockets and will always be the camera. I just pick it up when we are on holiday and its good to go. I have 4 batteries for it, 1 in the camera, 1 in the charger and 2 in my pocket along with a spare 2GB SDcard - the sizes and their weights are perfect. Note - I also spent several days of hunting down extra battery covers so the batteries would not discharge while in my pocket (coins and such).

As I started off - my wife and I are practicing retirement - a trip to the Baltic in July and Hawaii in October 07. Planning for the Panama Cannel and the Magellan Straights along with Australia and New Zealand. We are also going to spend several days in England before leaving on the Baltic cruise. It is once in a life time as I do not know how many times we will be able to do any of these, so I would like to get it right the first time. Also, my wife and I like to cruise as we only have to unpack once and its not a constant go, go, go to get to the next destination.

On the topic of the dSLR, the decision with the Pentax is a no brainer. Very satisified with that as compared to Canon, Nikon, Sony, Minolta, etc. The K100D has more than enough growth room for me. With the stablization in the body and the overall price for a package it is a done deal. I saw at Henery's Camera the body and both zoom lenses for $885. I can probably cut a few dollars off that, however it is a reasonable price for everything. The S3IS is an interesting proposition - the K100D would be 2 steps over the P&S while the S3 woud only be a single step (if that). It would probably do, and as I am carying it around it would probably be pretty perfect. With the SLR I would probably go with the long lense around the outside of the buildings then switch to the short lense inside. Going back to the pictures MTCLIMBER provided I would want to probably do some zooms of the ceilings and several inside shots of the hallways within the various palaces and then stitch them together.

Iam looking at better stitching software (commercial) - unfortunately I can not afford the packages I use at work (they run $10K to $100K per copy) and I am amazed at how quickly the pro/am commercial software has caught up with the very high end exploitation systems.

I am probably going to go with the Pentax (I really do and alway have liked Pentax) as I really believe that I will end up here - the question is the path. The S3 is an interesting challenge - I have not made up my mind here - I have to go hold one and try it out then compare the size and bulk to the Pentax. Holding both in my hands will probably be the deciding factor.

I am stitching pictures from 2 Alaska trips, a trip to Mexico and several minor trips in California. Also, thinking of putting up a quick website to see just how all of this looks - especially so that my inlaws are able to take a look at everything.....

PS - melt1109 the ramblings are great and a great help

Also - On our first trip to Alaska all 4 of us went. We took the laptop I just picked up for our son to go to college with, to use that as a storage bin. What I wound up doing was downloading the images while we were off the Hubbard glacier, stitching a couple together in real time to see what was going right and wrong and then making adjustments with another round of photos. It was a great learning experience - taking 50 images, dumping - stitching quickly to see what they looked like and then steping back out to the balcony or back on deck to get some more.

This last time to Mexico and Alaska - we did not bring a laptop but picked up 10 GB of 2GB 150x SDcards - paid $38 each for them. In Alaska 3 weeks ago now, we came back - I still had room for 100 images (started out with room for 3,000) - and did not even think that I would run out. Now for the Baltic - Yes, I am going to bring a laptop for storage and probably an extra 6 to 10 GB of SD cards just to be on the safe side.

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Old Jul 29, 2006, 10:52 PM   #18
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Interested-

As we always say. It is your personal choice. However, I am not sure any decision has been made, thus far. Please do what is best for you.

MT/Sarah


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Old Jul 30, 2006, 1:28 AM   #19
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mtclimber

I took at drive over to the mall this evening to line everything up, now that I have a better idea of the various contenders. The high school girl was very helpful and had a number of good suggestions. She pulled the Canon SD550 as a basis for comparison, the Canon S3IS and the Pentax ist (DL I think) - anyway the ist model that they had. I wanted to handle them, she also suggested a picture comparison between the S3IS and the Sony H4 (that has IS). We took photos of a picture frame across the shop (15 feet) specifically the price tag with the bar code label that we zoomed in on using the lcd screens - I was really surprised that the Sony H4 had much better stablization than the Canon. I used the ist without stablization as a benchmark. The sony image was sharper than the canon which was sharper than the ist (no stablization).

I think I'll go back since they were getting ready to close, - now her opinion was that the Nikon D50 using the stablized lense was better than both the canon and the sony - considering the price differenterial and the difference in the whole camera system - I have no doubt, which brings me back full circle to body stablization vs lense stablization. Her opinion was that the lense stablization design was better since it stablized the image before laying it on the sensor, rather than dithering (my term) the sensor, thus adding a source of noise. I have to read more on the topic. I'll just have to go back and compare the Pextax K100D with a Nikon D50 - same lense setup side by side with her picture frame price sticker test, and see what "shakes" out. I am sure that that will be a topic for considerable discussion on these forums. I'll just wait till the K100D is on the shelf and go back (with my own SD card ) and do some comparisions.

The S3 appeared to be a more substantial camera than the Sony - which was very plastic and light, but was more bulky. I did like the size and weight better of the canon s3 better than the sony.

So, overall I think that I am happy I started out early in that it is going to take comparison and thought here.

I also had her put both zoom lenses on the ist body, the 28-55 and the 50-200. I did like the feel and was pretty satisified with the size, mass, volume, balance and weight of the Pentax. Compared to the SD500 - it is pretty large, but the lenses are pretty reasonable in size. No doubt that I will always be carrying the P&S.
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Old Jul 30, 2006, 3:10 AM   #20
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interested and MT, thanks both for your kind words and not sending out an electronic/digital bonk for the ramblings.

Of course, MT summed it all up when she said it was a decision only you can make. I have no attestations except antecdotal about the S2/S3 and know only what I read about thePentax's K100d.

At least you've got the SD card and storage issue licked.

I have no clue about this camera but since you like the pocketability of the SD500, doesn't Canon make a pocketable with IS (as opposed to the S3). No idea if it meets your MP or zoom criteria or if it is decent or not. Just a thought.

If money is becoming an object and the S3IS is still on the table ofbuy both a p&s and DSLR front, have you checked to see if the S2IS can still be had? though the 5mp probably makes it unattractive at even $100 less.

Good luck! Be sure to keep us posted (both after purchase and after trip(s)).

M
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