I want a point & shoot, but...

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by OregonAmy, Jun 17, 2007.

  1. OregonAmy

    OregonAmy TPF Noob!

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    I currently have a Panasonic DMC-FZ10 which I've had for years and love. I don't carry it with me everywhere I go, though, and I tend to see photo ops in everyday situations (walking home from work, at the pub, etc) so I have been thinking about getting a compact P&S camera to throw in my handbag (which isn't that big). That way I have it with me all the time.

    The ones I've been eyeing are the Canon SD750 and the Nikon S50. Both are around $300 and seem to get very good reviews. I'm leaning toward the Nikon as the Canon does not have image stabilization. But I'm worried the lens will get scratched if it's in my bag (no lens cover).

    Neither has aperture or shutter priority modes, though, which I use frequently. Anything compact (or ultra compact) with those are around $500. I might as well put that toward an SLR, which I hope to get in the next year or two. And I really don't want to be carrying around something that valuable with me all the time, anyway.

    So... I don't know what to do. I want something that I can just stick in my bag, but I'm afraid that I'll be frustrated by a lack of features or poor quality. Maybe I won't care about the A/S/M setting if I'm just doing P&S in a pub with my friends, anyway...

    Anyone have any insight or advice? Any other cameras I should be looking at? The ones mentioned above are the two that tend to come up the most and have the best reviews when I search.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    I have a Panasonic Fz-20 and a Fuji F30...I love it. I think the new version is the F40 something or other. It's fantastic and perfectly usable up to ISO 800, unless you're printing large versions of the shots. ISO 1600 is passable if it's a small print. ISO 3200 is only to be used if it's the only way to get the shot. I find that I'm using flash a lot less. The ability to use a high ISO is great since the my Fz-20 (and I'm sure the Fz-10) has horrible noise issues at anything higher than ISO 200, and even that's iffy.
     
  3. OregonAmy

    OregonAmy TPF Noob!

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    Most of the P&S' I've been looking at don't even go up to ISO 3200. Most only up to 800 and a few up to 1600 but the sample images look horrible.

    I love my current Panasonic so I will take a look at some of their ultra-compact cameras. I haven't really spent much time looking at them.

    Anyone recommend other brands? My best friend has an HP that actually isn't bad, but usability is kinda crap.

    Thanks!
     
  4. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    That's why I was suggesting the F30. It's quite usable up to ISO 800. Look up some reviews and I'm sure you'll see what I mean.
     
  5. OregonAmy

    OregonAmy TPF Noob!

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    Thank you! Sorry, I didn't mean to sound snarky in my other post.

    I checked out the fuji on dpreview and it sounds perfect for what I want. I'll definitely give it a handle at my photo shop. thank you :)
     
  6. Smith2688

    Smith2688 TPF Noob!

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    haha, no problem, I just didn't want a camera getting passed up because I worded my little commercial for it poorly.
     
  7. I have the Leica D-Lux 3, which is also known as the Panasonic DMC-LX2.

    Great camera, with RAW output as well as Av and Tv modes. Can even be focused manually. Don't miss it in your evaluation, the little Leica has become an important camera in my arsenal for the exact reason you mention - the fanciest camera is useless if it is laying around at home. This is small enough to always have with you
     
  8. andythebrave

    andythebrave TPF Noob!

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    I previously mentioned this a while back in another thread but I highly recommend the Panasonic FX01.

    It's small and easily pocketable.

    It has a lens that goes to 28mm (equivalent) at the wide end of the zoom.

    It has an extremely sturdy metal body.

    It does not, however, have any significant user controllable functions but I wouldn't see this as an issue for the stated requirement of point and shoot.

    I bought one for my wife just over a month ago and am seriously considering getting one for myself too especially as, since it's last year's model, the price is now as low as £100/$200.

    Stateside it would seem that the best price for the silver version is around $300 so is within your budget although you can get the black for around $200-$240 which, frankly, is an excellent deal. The wide angle end of the lens is worth a heck of a lot especially in social gatherings.

    Sure, you'll find, as we do, that noise becomes an issue once you get up to ISO400 and definitely at ISO800 and above but only for those images that are printed larger than standard size and, to be honest, with the use of flash it is unlikely that the camera will set itself to these levels anyway.

    Oh, and it has an excellent Image Stabilisation system built in.

    Seriously, you have to handle one of these. If you do you'll buy it.
     
  9. andythebrave

    andythebrave TPF Noob!

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    Oh, and the lens gets covered automatically on power off.
     
  10. sabbath999

    sabbath999 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I am thrilled you mentioned this camera, I am looking at buying one... how is the noise level at higher ISO's, this is a real issue for me.
     
  11. sabbath999

    sabbath999 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I just bought and now use (as my carry around snapshooter) a Canon A710 IS. It has image stablization (it actually works, too), has a bunch of auto modes, aperture and shutter priority and full manual (or so I have read in the manual), and a 6x zoom. I have not shot it at high ISO so I can't tell you about the noise.

    One of the reasons I chose it is that it has a range-finder style viewfinder and not an electronic one, making following action much easier. It shoots at 1.5 FPS or so, I think. The shutter lag is a lot better than I expected, but it is (obviously) not up to DSLR standards. Battery life is surprisingly good considering it uses 2 AA's, but if you get one you REALLY have to use good high amp rechargeable batteries.

    I bought it as a carry everywhere snapshot camera, so my expectations are limited, but I paid $239 bucks for it at Dell (of all places) and it is really a great little camera for daylight shooting. WARNING... if you use the flash, you are doomed to major redeye and a 5 second recycle time... I kid you not. Blame that on only using the 2 batteries.

    Here is an snapshot album, I took pictures with it at our American Cancer Society Relay For Life event last week (a few -- on the stage at night -- are actually taken with a D80 and its totally inadequate internal flash...). I don't claim these are good pictures, I was walking around and just pushing the button, but you can see the camera at least works. Also, don't dog on me for the shots under the pavilion... I just got the camera that morning and was still trying to figure out (unsuccessfully) how to make the fill flash work.

    Pictures (the daytime ones) taken with a AS 710.
     
  12. It's a great camera, but the noise at ISO 800 and higher is very high. My understanding is that any small sensor with a high pixelcount is going to be very noisy. Personally I would prefer if the manufacturers stopped this pixel battle.
     

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