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any digital camera experts?(10 posts)

any digital camera experts?Jack S
Jan 2, 2002 10:41 AM
what features do I look for? considering something like the Olympus D-40 to replace 35mm system for travel, leisure, family, etc. picture-taking (basically all-around). help, please
re: any digital camera experts?jrm
Jan 2, 2002 10:51 AM
What i found in various buyers guides was to Look for a high pixel count, adjustable resolution, red eye control, multiple zoom, LED (on and off option), upgradable memory card using common technology, and the implements needed to download pics to your PC. Also dont spend a bunch of cash on a camera because chances are that the cameras technoogy will be antiguated in 6 months to a year.
any VIDEO cam suggestions?rollo tommassi
Jan 2, 2002 3:45 PM
I'm itching to buy a hi8 digicam, expecting to pay around $1000.

Sony TVR series looks really good, but any other suggestions?

Thanks!
Way outta my league...jrm
Jan 3, 2002 9:54 AM
Im still toothing on a digital camera..
Best answer is already thereKristin_CLS
Jan 2, 2002 12:17 PM
What do you want to do with it specifically?
Is your current 35mm and SLR camera?
If so, do you shoot in manual mode or point and shoot?
What are the features that you like best about the 35mm?
Which of those do you want to retain while using the digital?

All of these questions will help you narrow down your selection to only a few or many digital models. (for instance, if you would like to retain the ability to create an image with variable depth of field...you will limit your selection by quite a bit). Also, check out www.pcphotoreview.com (a sister site), they have a good community going too and should be helpful.

I will not make any suggestions for specific digital cameras to buy as I have little experience with them. They'll have to pry my manual SLR from my cold, dead fingers. Good luck shopping!
I've been an expert for 48 hours now...cory
Jan 2, 2002 3:37 PM
Just got one as a belated Christmas present, but we did some research before we bought it, and I work for a newspaper that's 50 percent through a conversion to digital (multi-thousand dollar cameras; not much help to casual shooters), so I picked our photo guys' brains.
Consensus for ordinary vacation/beach/holiday use is that you need 3 megapixels but not necessarily more unless you're going to make a lot of big (8x10 or bigger) prints. Mine has 3.1 and works fine up to 5x7, which is the biggest I've tried.
Optical zoom is better than digital because it magnifies the image instead of just blowing up the pixels, which can make them visible in the print (mine's digital--my wife picked it out for me--and the pixelation is JUST beginning to show in a 3x zoom at 5x7. It won't be a problem for what I do).
Internal memory on my Kodak DX3700 is good for only about 10 pictures at the BEST quality setting (used for big prints), 30 or so in BETTER but 70+ in GOOD, which is all you need for e-mail. Memory cards that hold about 65 BEST pictures are $60 from Kodak online (but $99.99 from Office Depot--don't believe the LOWEST PRICES signs).
Kodak software (at least the stuff that came with my camera) is easy to load and use but not particularly versatile. It will lighten and darken, crop and eliminate redeye, but not much else (there may be more hidden in there somewhere--I'm still fiddling around with the basic instructions).
I'm an old film guy, even made a living at photography for awhile, and I've had my Nikons for years, so I operate them almost instinctively. I'm a long way from that with digital, and I'm overcoming a sort of Luddite mental block about the whole process. But it's fun, and nice to be able to send stuff to Grandma two minutes after you shoot it.
No, but I do have an opinion or twoCliff Oates
Jan 2, 2002 6:28 PM
I purchased my digicam (Canon S10) to replace a 35mm point and shoot, while my 35mm SLR is alive and well and thinking a film scanner might be a worthwhile accessory. Digital Photography Review conducts comprehensive reviews of most of the popular cameras and is an outstanding resource.

2 megapixel (MP) cameras produce nice looking 8x10 prints and that's about the minimum you'd want to consider. 5 MP seems to be the current maximum resolution for consumer cameras. The memory cards that come with the cameras are all on the small side, so plan on buying a more capacious one with your camera. Optical zoom is extremely desirable and you should be looking for something in the 3x zoom range (i.e.: 28-85 or 35-105 35mm equivalent focal length). Just as with a film camera, lens quality and speed is very important. In the medium price range, look for cameras with threaded lens rings as these will take accessory lenses or filters and the like. A hot shoe for an external flash could be desirable to you, but this feature is usually found on the higher end cameras. A USB based connection for file transfer is the norm for consumer cameras -- a serial port connection is excrutiatingly slow. Forget about digital SLRs for now -- these are priced for professionals or well-heeled consumers and cost upwards of $3000.

Check the way the controls operate too. My Canon is pretty easy to use and it operates a lot like a film camera. It replaced an old Kodak DC50 that was extremely clumsy to use.

If you're going to take your camera along with you on rides, small and sturdy is good. My Canon survived a crash in my jersey pocket that sent me to the hospital, but then it has a metal case while mine is somewhat softer. A nice feature for take along cameras would be an LCD panel that reverses and presents a hard face to the world, such as that found on the Canon G2. I managed to crack the LCD on my S10 once on a ride and it cost $150 to have it replaced.

In general, I'd say a good quality equivalent to a 35mm point and shoot zoom will cost around $400-$500, while a good zoom based rangefinder-type camera will run $750-$1100. Look for the usual brand names to compete the same way they do in the film world.
Here's a contrary opinionridgerider
Jan 3, 2002 5:20 AM
I agree with everything the other posters have said about needing 3 pixels or more of resolution, but...

Another alternative, if you are going to use the camera on the bike a lot, would be a super simple, cheap digital camera. You could get one for well under $100. No zoom, no LCD, no complicated controls, but you could still manage your photos in albums and enhance them on the computer. I got an Intel Pocket PC camera as part of a computer bundle and have had a lot of fun with it on group rides. It is light and simple enough that I can take photos on the fly as I'm riding. It's low resolution and I'm ready for a better camera, but it will be a great second camera for outdoor adventures. A sample shot from a fall group ride is posted.
Oh my!mr_spin
Jan 3, 2002 10:21 AM
A wheelsucker wearing a Camel Bak? Does it get any worse? :)
not an expertTig
Jan 4, 2002 11:12 AM
I'm looking into a digital camera as well. The D-40 looks like an excellent choice! I haven't shopped prices on them yet but here's one source: http://www.ssdonline.com/detail_page.cfm?productid=225310&cfid=2402837&cftoken=13703757

I found an excellent review source at:
http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/olympusc40z/page14.asp
This is the conclusion page (page 14 of 15 in the review) that should help. Go to the "Compared to" page to see how it does next to the Canon PowerShot S40 (a similar camera worth looking into as well).