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Author Topic: Camera Advice Please  (Read 8074 times)

Offline Graham_and_Karen

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Camera Advice Please
« Reply #15 on: March 28, 2008, 07:26:04 PM »
Shutter Lag Comparison

I shall be looking at this later  - yet more data to throw into the decision making  

Offline Chas

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« Reply #16 on: March 29, 2008, 03:47:33 PM »
My decision list (no nominations!) is driven by the following thoughts:

1.  Picture quality IS important, so the lens counts for more than the software.

2.  "Electronic zoom" is only useful for examining picture details in-camera.  It does nowt for the real picture.  Optical zoom is a must - the more, the better (don't always have to use all of it).

3.  I have bad (very bad) eyesight, so a viewfinder is not much help, a big screen shows me more.

4.  Because I have to hold the camera away from my head (see above), it tends to shake more than being held against something solid (yes, my head!) - so "steadying software" is a big advantage.

5.  More MP = more money but it depends on how/where the picture will be viewed:  5 MP gives good quality on a 19" screen or A4 sheet; anything bigger or cropped-and-filled needs more pixels.

6.  Technology is improving exponentially - today's "state of the art" is tomorrow's "out of the Ark" - last season's cameras may be a bit cheaper but will lack so many features.  SD cards have increased in capacity and prices have fallen through the floor ... you can get 8GB cards now for less than the original cost of a 256MB. (In a few weeks, that will be 128MB.)  

7.  Stick with the "known names" for cameras (Olympus, Nikon, Canon, Minolta, etc.) rather than film or technology manufacturers.  They tend to know what is really necessary for photography, instead of wonderful sounding but trivial features.

That's my two-penn'orth, anyway.  Hope it helps to whittle down the list of possibles.

Once you have a short list of two or three, go into Jessops (or wherever) and ask to hold your choices "for comparison" - you may well find that one camera "just feels right" (or very wrong) before you pay out those all important drink vouchers.  (You don't have to buy in Jessops, say "thanks, I'll go and think about it" and buy the best deal you can.)

Good luck.
Chas



Stupidity is its own reward.

Offline Ploppy

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« Reply #17 on: March 29, 2008, 04:22:45 PM »
Quote from: Chas
... you can get 8GB cards now for less than the original cost of a 256MB. (In a few weeks, that will be 128MB.)  


Yes it is scary how the price has dropped. When I bought my first digicam ( a Canon Pro 90IS for over 700! ) I also bought a 128MB Compact Flash card for 72. For 72 now you could get approximately 32GB, so in effect the price has come down 250 times in about six years.

Offline Graham_and_Karen

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« Reply #18 on: March 29, 2008, 04:54:14 PM »
Just been out to yet more camera/technology stores. Karen's warming to the Canon IXUS75 - a bit heavy but a good feel to it. Then we saw the Olympus FE290. It was a bit bulkier than others we'd looked at but was quite light. It seemed to tick the boxes in that it's got a x5 optical zoom, 3" screen and a lens that starts at 28mm f.l. (35mm equiv.). We sensibly held off buying but were pretty much decided on it. Then when we got home, we read the reviews ... distinct lack of features, image barrelling at wide angle, very noisy at the high ISO values, if you can call it that - ISO640 max. So we won't be buying it.
It's either the Canon IXUS75 (the 80 or better are too pricey) of possibly the Olympus C-560 (FE-340) which is on offer at Jessops at the moment. Just off to read more about it.

Offline Graham_and_Karen

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« Reply #19 on: March 30, 2008, 02:38:11 PM »
Decision made (finally!). It'll be the Olympus FE-340 from Dabs (Play.com is cheaper but out of stock).

Thanks for the advice - Paul, Chas and John. My camera's just started playing up - intermittent bright horizontal lines in the image so I may well be going through all this again soon. I've just got to promise not to get a better camera than Karen's Olympus  
« Last Edit: March 30, 2008, 02:39:23 PM by Graham_and_Karen »

Offline Ploppy

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« Reply #20 on: March 30, 2008, 04:02:19 PM »
Quote from: Graham_and_Karen
Decision made (finally!). It'll be the Olympus FE-340 from Dabs (Play.com is cheaper but out of stock).

Thanks for the advice - Paul, Chas and John. My camera's just started playing up - intermittent bright horizontal lines in the image so I may well be going through all this again soon. I've just got to promise not to get a better camera than Karen's Olympus  

Phew! Always a relief when a decision is made  

No experience of Olympus myself but it looks good and gets positive reviews.

I see Dabs are doing free delivery this weekend plus 3% Quidco or TopCashBack so the price is around the best in stock you can get.

I'm sure Karen will be very happy with her new toy

Offline Graham_and_Karen

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« Reply #21 on: March 30, 2008, 05:21:08 PM »
Quote from: Ploppy
Quote from: Graham_and_Karen
Decision made (finally!). It'll be the Olympus FE-340 from Dabs (Play.com is cheaper but out of stock).

Thanks for the advice - Paul, Chas and John. My camera's just started playing up - intermittent bright horizontal lines in the image so I may well be going through all this again soon. I've just got to promise not to get a better camera than Karen's Olympus  

Phew! Always a relief when a decision is made  

No experience of Olympus myself but it looks good and gets positive reviews.

I see Dabs are doing free delivery this weekend plus 3% Quidco or TopCashBack so the price is around the best in stock you can get.

I'm sure Karen will be very happy with her new toy  

I'm sure she will and seeing as she insisted I order it in pink   there's every chance I'll stick to my camera  
 
« Last Edit: March 30, 2008, 05:23:18 PM by Graham_and_Karen »

Offline Ploppy

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« Reply #22 on: March 30, 2008, 08:17:46 PM »
Quote from: Graham_and_Karen
I'm sure she will and seeing as she insisted I order it in pink   there's every chance I'll stick to my camera  
 

I wondered if she might! Now when yours packs up, you can get the blue model. His and hers

Offline John R

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« Reply #23 on: March 30, 2008, 08:50:42 PM »
Quote from: Graham_and_Karen
Decision made (finally!). It'll be the Olympus FE-340 from Dabs (Play.com is cheaper but out of stock).

Just had a look at reviews on that camera. It looks more than excellent to me. Well worth all this discussion.

John R

Offline harribobs

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« Reply #24 on: March 31, 2008, 02:30:19 PM »
I'm a bit late for any real advice as the deal is done   but my thoughts regarding viewfinders on cameras

i think they are essential ( unless like Chas and you cannot use them) the viewfinder option means you can hold the camera firmly against your face, reducing camera shake and letting you see the actual shot you are framing. i have seen so many people vaguely waving a camera at a view at arms length...

Offline Graham_and_Karen

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« Reply #25 on: March 31, 2008, 08:10:21 PM »
Quote from: harribobs
I'm a bit late for any real advice as the deal is done   but my thoughts regarding viewfinders on cameras

i think they are essential ( unless like Chas and you cannot use them) the viewfinder option means you can hold the camera firmly against your face, reducing camera shake and letting you see the actual shot you are framing. i have seen so many people vaguely waving a camera at a view at arms length...
Good point harribobs - it's also useful for long-sighted people like me who can't see anything on the screen without my glasses. Fortunately Karen's short sighted so she can see the screen even if she can't see the thng she's photographing  
When I first got my camera (3 years ago) I used the viefinder quite a lot but I rarely use it now - I find it easier to frame the subject if I'm looking at the screen (even though it's only 3cm). Also, although the camera's nothing special (powershot A80) it's got a screen that tilts and swivels so you're not forced to hold it in front of your face. BTW - the deal isn't done yet. Dabs sent me an email to say it's not in stock so I could cancel ... but we won't.

Offline Ploppy

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« Reply #26 on: March 31, 2008, 09:26:27 PM »
Quote from: Graham_and_Karen
Good point harribobs - it's also useful for long-sighted people like me who can't see anything on the screen without my glasses. Fortunately Karen's short sighted so she can see the screen even if she can't see the thng she's photographing  
When I first got my camera (3 years ago) I used the viefinder quite a lot but I rarely use it now - I find it easier to frame the subject if I'm looking at the screen (even though it's only 3cm). Also, although the camera's nothing special (powershot A80) it's got a screen that tilts and swivels so you're not forced to hold it in front of your face. BTW - the deal isn't done yet. Dabs sent me an email to say it's not in stock so I could cancel ... but we won't.


If Karen doesn't mind something a little bigger then Canon are offering cashback on some of their A series (Expires tonight though)

So you could get the A720 IS for 110 from Jessops (30 cashback and 10 off using code). It is here.

Offline Graham_and_Karen

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« Reply #27 on: April 01, 2008, 08:58:19 AM »
Thanks Ploppy but we'll stick to the pink Olympus. If it looks like Dabs won't be able to deliver before we go on holiday (18th April) we'll pop down to our local Jessops, making use of the voucher to get it (badged as a C-560 but identical) in silver for a few pounds more. Interestingly, Nectar estores gives you a 5% discount at Jessops and the web ordering system takes that plus the 10% voucher discount off the price making it as cheap as Dabs but the Nectar small print says you should not use it with any other voucher so we won't.