Suggestion on buying sub-US$400 digital camera

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by hemang, Mar 21, 2012.

  1. hemang

    hemang TPF Noob!

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    This is just my 2nd thread and sorry if I am posting in wrong forum or if the questions are silly.
    I am just an amateur photographer, not at all an expert. But I like taking pictures.
    In the past I have used Minolta SLR with film. The results were very good. However got tired of carrying the camera and spare lens so shifted to compact digital camera in 2004. Since then have used Sony DSC P100, Canon Powershot 640 and now Canon Powershot 720. I like the Canon cameras as they have manual controls. The colors also seem natural unlike Sony, which seemed artificially rich.
    Now I want to buy a DSLR or Fixed Lens Camera with a large diameter lens and high Zoom. A DSLR may be too heavy and bulky to carry around but I am not sure if the fixed lens camera will give similar results.
    Can I have some suggestions?
    Which manufacturer to select from Canon, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic? Or any other??


     
  2. jaomul

    jaomul Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Your in the right forum but you have to many variables. Decide using Google or similar the type of camera you need then people can try to advise. a dslr is completely different to a fixed large zoom. If your budget is rigid you can pretty much rule out a dslr unless its a bit older and secondhand.
     
  3. Balmiesgirl

    Balmiesgirl TPF Noob!

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    Try http://www.dpreview.com it's got an awesome compare tool :)
    I just got a Nikon p7000 for a friend and it's a great little camera. Nice controls, especially like the full manual option. It even works wirelessly with my Nikon flashes.
    The canon g12 is a great camera too. I have been wanting to pick one up to keep in my purse.
     
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2012
  4. Balmiesgirl

    Balmiesgirl TPF Noob!

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    Oh btw.... Adorama and b&h photo have awesome used departments. Lots of good deals :) they are very accurate on their descriptions and have decent return policies.... Check them out.
     
  5. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What type of photography you are going after?

    General photography such as events documenting?
    Macro photography?
    Action sports type?
    Street photography?
    Portrait photography, indoor studio type or outdoor on location type?


    In some area, a DSLR make more sense while in other area, a good quality point and shoot camera will do a good job just fine.
     
  6. zamanakhan

    zamanakhan TPF Noob!

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    I would pick up a used d5000 from keh.com along with a 18-55. If you can add more to your budget a d5000+35 1.8 is hard to beat under approximately 500
     
  7. hemang

    hemang TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for all the replies. I am from India. Budget us around INR.20,000, approx US$ 400 at todays exchange rates.

    My main use would be general photography at home and on vacations. Need good flash and battery life if possible. I may not really need the ultrazooms as the optics may not be too good, according to reviews on net. At present my compact camera has 6x zoom, so I guess a bit more like 12-15x should be good enough. I need good video as I don't have a separate video cam and not planning to buy one.

    Here in India, for around the INR.20,000, following cameras are available :
    Fujifilm Finepix S4000 : US$330
    Olympus SP-810UZ : US$350
    Fujifilm FinePix HS 10 : US$400
    Panasonic FZ-47 : US$400
    Nikon Coolpix P500 : US$410
    Olympus SZ-30MR : US$410
    Fujifilm FinePix HS20 : US$430
    Panasonic Lumix FZ-150 : US$450
    Sony Cybershot DSC-HX100V : US$450
    Nikon Coolpix P510 : US$465

    I would not like to extend my budget above the Nikon 510. Any suggestions on which of these camera would be suitable. Good picture quality with reasonable zoom and good video.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
  8. zamanakhan

    zamanakhan TPF Noob!

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    are there any used cameras available near you? like i said the d5000 with a 35 1.8 would pretty much blow all of those out of the water in every category. If that is out of the question than i would go for a canon s100, rather than all of those or a canon g12, I wouldn't bother looking at the rest of these. Someone else might have a different opinion tho.
     
  9. hemang

    hemang TPF Noob!

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    Never thought of a used camera, will check out if anyone sells in Mumbai.
    The Canon S100 is pretty expensive and seems to have a smaller diameter lens, also only 5x zoom. But how come it is better than all the above? I am currently having Powershot A720, are my above choices worse than this or better (in terms of quality of picture).
    Thanks for helping
     
  10. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Personally, I like the Canon G series.

    - Great optics (High quaility lens with focal length {35mm equivalent} 28-140mm which is great for general photography)
    - Can shoot in RAW format (RAW format contain more image data, great for post production)
    - Can use a hotshoe flash. (So you can bounce the flash off the ceiling/wall or off axis if needed. Some people also use it with off camera flash)
    - Manual controls on exposure such as ISO, aperture and shutter speed. (More control means better in situation where in camera light meter readings cannot be trust.)

    I think the current model that fit your budget is G12. (I have the G11) I saw someone list a G12 on local craigslist for $275. New in US is around $420.
     
  11. hemang

    hemang TPF Noob!

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    The G12 seems similar to my Powershot A720 in size and magnification. Will the quality of the pictures be very different?
    Will the pictures be like a manual SLR? I was under the impression that large diameter lens means better picture, apparently that is not the case.
     
  12. Crollo

    Crollo TPF Noob!

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    Larger sensor means better low light capabilities, better noise performance and more DOF control.
     

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