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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2006 4:43 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 05, 2005 7:50 pm
Posts: 49
Sam,

After years of analog, film, amateur, snapshot shooting and after years of nagging from my children, I finally have gone modern and ordered a Canon SD 450 Elph from dell.com. I've got some personal reasons for ordering an "ultracompact" and this particular camera may not be for all.

I happened to order from dell because newegg.com, which I've used in the past and found reliable, happened to be out of stock and dell had about the same price. I found other sites that listed the same camera for $10 or $20 less, but like you I worry a bit about sourcing

In my researching I happened upon this web page which (along with other links found there) I found very helpful. I hope it may help you in your search.

http://www.consumersearch.com/www/photo_and_video/digital-camera-reviews/reviews.html

Good luck.

Tom


Last edited by tomdclark on Thu Mar 16, 2006 9:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2006 9:10 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2005 10:50 pm
Posts: 354
Location: Stacy, MN
Let me start with this. Before I can tell you what *I* think about any digital camera, I need to know what you want to do with your pictures/camera.

My opinions are based on buying and using cameras that suit my particular needs.

I owned a Sony Mavica D75 with 10X zoom that wrote to floppy disk. Groan, you might. However, It is the best camera for taking photographs of jewelry without flash, that gave me the best detail up close. I needed the images for the web (ebay), it is difficult and tricky to get good photos of super-reflective (rhinestones and jewelry) subjects without glare, without flash. The Sony Mavica was EXCELLENT for the job. It was large, but that was not a factor for what I needed the camera for. What you need your camera to do will be a huge factor in which ones to look at.

I now have a Kodak 4 megapixel easy share with dock. It is also a 10X zoom but it DOES NOT take nice, focused, closeup macro zoom images like the sony mavica did (but the mavica did not survive the sand dunes in southern california...floppy disk drive and sand...forgetaboutit). This camera is smaller, and takes wonderful images of landscapes and people for running around when travelling. however, I wanted it for the 10X zoom and it has disappointed.

I won't be blowing these photos up to 8x10s or higher, so I do not need a 5 megapixel or 8 megapixes (and I doubt most people do).

Most cameras now are bragging about this gadget or that megapixel, but if you're not actually going to make posters with your photos, chances are it's just a way to eat up expensive digital storage media space.

Oh, and check to see how quickly or slowly they write to that media. If you're waiting for 3 seconds for each image to write before you can have your viewfinder back, you might be a bit put out after a while (and the Kodak does have that problem. No matter how fast the SD card is.

So, before I can tell you anything (or anyone else can) that will actually help you, please elucidate on your preferred usage for your camera and some of us technophiles will be glad to tell you what we know.

PatTrish

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26' RB
Jeep Liberty toad


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 Post subject: Digital cameras
PostPosted: Thu Mar 16, 2006 10:27 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2005 12:14 pm
Posts: 381
Location: Seneca, SC
Sam: On the web there is a site called "Steves Digicams" it is a plethora of information. But again, what Pat says---it depends on what you want to do with it that counts. I presently have an older Olympus D400 that took me four years to learn, and now I like it well enough that I have no desire to up-grade. It has both optical and digital zoom which alows a quality picture up as close as I want to get, and three quality formats in case i want to someday make a poster. For the present, I keep the thing set on the low quality internet setting which gives me 120 shots per load.

Bill


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 11:43 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2005 1:13 pm
Posts: 69
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
Sam, you are a card! :lol:

My experience with digitals began with a "state of the art", very complex Olympus that my hubby bought for me for Christmas years ago. It had bells and whistles that were complicated and the camera frustrated me so much, it sat unused for almost a year. By the time I really started using it it was fairly obsolete!. It took wonderful photos BUT it was slow to "read to to the disk", meaning the recovery time between shots was VERY slow. Also, I sometimes ended up with no people or animals in my photo because they had left the frame before the shutter clicked. Very frustrating! It was also bulky.

So, last year I researched smaller digitals that would be faster in operation. A friend had a tiny Canon, but I didn't want to use a special battery. My criteria were: fast shutter, fast to write to disk, double A batteries I could recharge or replace anywhere in the world, large LCD screen for my old eyes and very specifically I knew I needed an View Finder Window. I take a lot of outdoor shots in sunlight and my experience has been you have a harder time focusing your shot by looking through the digital display (they fade out in high light).

I visited lots of camera review web sites and talked to anyone I met about what they loved about their digital. I visited stores and soaked up information and handled lots of cameras. I finally ended up with a Sony Cyber-shot DSC W/1(which is now obsolete) I understand view finders are almost extinct now, but that would be a deal breaker for me unless technology has solved the digital screen fade in high light.

Do you want to have a lot of control over your settings or do you just want to "point and shoot". Do you want a zoom? Is camera size a factor for you, ie do you want to be able to slip it into a shirt pocket? Do you want to shoot more photos outside or inside. Different cameras will excel at different things. Do you like complicated "techie" toys or do you want to just load a memory card and start taking photos without reading directions.



I recommend doing what the web sites will tell you - get your hands on the cameras and see how they feel. Operate some of the features. Some features you might want to use frequently may be buried deep in menus and make the camera a frustration. You can handle lots of camera at Sams and Costco or you can go bother the camera stores (even though you intend to buy online which maybe isn't a very nice thing to do, but that's your call.)

Aren't you tired of all these questions now? Doesn't your head hurt?!!

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Greg and Linda Giuliani
2002 26' RSB
2003 Chevy Tracker 4x4 toad
Datastorm F1, D2, DW7000, 117W


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 Post subject: Digitals
PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 3:00 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2005 12:14 pm
Posts: 381
Location: Seneca, SC
Wow ! Linda sure covered all the bases !


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 9:38 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2005 6:17 am
Posts: 74
Location: NH
I have always used www.stevesdigicams.com to reseach our cameras. It is a great resource. We are on our fourth digital and the advice and extnesive research Steve does is spot on.

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Chris Ng
2005 26RSB CE


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Mar 17, 2006 10:39 pm 
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Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2005 10:50 pm
Posts: 354
Location: Stacy, MN
Sam, I assume you want to take pictures! You didn't ask about a snowblower or a scanner.

Rolling eyes! (your smiley)

your subject line reads:
Quote:
LET'S COMPARE AND TALK DIGITAL CAMERAS, AND THEIR SOURCING:


I took you seriously. Sorry. I was only asking questions (and giving examples) that any GOOD salesperson would ask.

But WHAT do you want to take pictures OF?
Do you want to take Action shots?
Scenic shots?
Closeups?
Portraits?

You can spend as little as $50 and as much as $25,000 on a digital camera.

Do you want your stuff to be of a quality to enter it in a contest?
Do you want to use it for pictures on the web?
Or are you going to print 5x7's and 8x10s?

On the other hand, I'll let others answer your question, since the direct approach isn't welcome.

I bow out.

Trish

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26' RB
Jeep Liberty toad


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 3:07 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:36 pm
Posts: 143
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
About eighteen months ago, Ken purchased a Nikon D-70 digital SLR with a 28-70 mm zoom lens. HE LOVES IT!! He can choose the resolution and uses the Nikon for photos in all types of situations, indoor and outdoor: special events with formal posed and casual shots of people; nature photos; travel photos; etc. When he downloads the photos to the computer, he can zoom in even more on the subject, correct background problems, and crop any parts of the shot into one or more different photos. Ken's not a professional, but he donates a lot of photography services to non-profit organizations.

I have a Canon EOS non-digital SLR that now sits in the corner and hasn't been used since Ken bought the Nikon. I resisted buying the Nikon for quite awhile, but I was wrong. It was pricey, but well worth it, and the lenses from his older Nikon can be used with the D-70. Now, Nikon has another digital SLR model that costs even more, but we'll stick with the D-70.

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Barbara & Ken


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 4:56 pm 
We just did a lot of research and ended up buying Konica Maxuum SLR digital camera. We went from a 4 year old Sony 3.2 pixel digital that had a long lag time but took good pictures in good light. But, there were several shots on our trip out West last fall that we couldn't take either because of lighting or the lack of a powerful zoom lens. I also was tired of losing the dogs and grandchildren in the shot because of the lag time. We haven't really used it enough yet to know if the upgrade was worth the price but we think it will be. It also has a memory card that can take a gazillion pictures. That was also an issue with our old Sony. The most we could take was 80 so check the memory capacity of the cards that the camera will accept. Barbara, what software do you use with the Nikon for photo editing?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 6:07 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:36 pm
Posts: 143
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Right now, Ken uses Adobe Photoshop Elements 3. He's learns something new about the capabilities of the software every time he edits photos. Formerly, we would have photos processed and give the copies to organizations and friends. Now, he puts the edited (and "signed") photos on CDs to give to them, which works better for everyone.

I've heard the complaint about "lag time" with some digital cameras and how it sometimes ruins a photo opportunity. It might be possible to use a faster card to help element that "lag time."

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Barbara & Ken


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 8:47 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2005 6:17 am
Posts: 74
Location: NH
Shutter lag has nothing to do with memory cards. It has to do with the auto focus. If you are able to prefocus a shot, usually by pressing the shutter button half way, then shutter lag becomes almost non-issue. for whatever reasons, manufacturer has been reluctant or incapable of speeding up shuuter lag comparable to film cameras. With each generation of digitals, it gets better, but there is still a noticeable lag. Not sure about digital SLRs, though. Do they also suffer from simlar shutter lags of the point and shoot (aka PHDs - Push Here Dummy) types?

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Chris Ng
2005 26RSB CE


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2006 1:14 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 14, 2005 3:43 pm
Posts: 511
Location: Klamath Falls, OR
I do fine art photography - one of my other expensive hobbies 8^). I do mostly landscapes. (I'd be a wildlife photog but by the time I get around to snapping the shutter it's a landscape.) For the fine art stuff I'm still shooting film. However, I use a digital when setting up a medium format shot as it saves on film by letting me fine tune the exposure and composition before hand. And I've found I'm now using the digital for everything except the fine art shots.

I've been using an Olympus Ultra Zoom until I'm ready to invest in a professional digital camera. It gives me a similar degree of control that I have with my pro cameras and enough mega-pixels to make a nice 16X20 inch print. (I can print acceptable 24X36 inch prints from slide film.)

Some elements of the Olympus UZ that appeal to the advanced amateur or professional photographer:
-Lens Speed: F2.8 (Reasonably fast)
-10X Optical zoom (Equivalent to 38mm - 380mm optical zoom in a 35mm film camera) + 3X Digital Zoom or 1140mm equivalent!!!
- Full manual control
- Acceptable lag time
- MPEG movies with sound. (Great for the grand kids.)
- Super macro mode. 1.6" focus.
- Full histogram
- Threaded lens tube for wide angle adapter.
- Built in Flash
- Shutter time delay
- Uses AA alkalines or rechargeable NiMh
- Xd memory
- Panorama Mode
- 16s exposure
- Full Auto mode
- Tripod mount


A few negatives:
- No "bulb" setting for long exposures
- No multiple exposures.
- Limited ISO range 100-400
- F8 is the smallest f-stop. (Use ND filter.)
- Manual modes are slow to set up

If you want a camera that can do it all on a budget - this one can. It's not as ergonomic as a "Pro" camera and is probably too complicated for someone who just wants to take nice snap shots.

The Olympus Stylus line of cameras is a better choice if you want to relequish control for ease of operation, small size and overall simplicity.

Mike

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Mike & Jean
2005 26' RSS Diesel


Last edited by Mike & Jean Bandfield on Tue Mar 21, 2006 12:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2006 3:26 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:36 pm
Posts: 143
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
mi99amigo wrote:
Shutter lag has nothing to do with memory cards.


Didn't say "memory card." In fact, I'm too much of a photography dummy to know what type of card I heard mentioned to help speed up the "shutter lag."

I'm definitely a PHD type, but I prefer SLR cameras. The little view finder "windows" in point and shoot cameras really give my aging eyes fits. And I don't like using the digital display screen for the same reason. The lighting never seems to be right to be able to see what's on that little display.

No matter, though. I just enjoy the view while Ken does all the photography. :D

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Barbara & Ken


Last edited by Barbara & Ken on Tue Mar 21, 2006 8:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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