New Camera Recommendations Please

Discussion in 'What Camera Should I Buy?' started by MiamiSpartan, Oct 4, 2007.

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  1. MiamiSpartan

    MiamiSpartan New Member

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    Hi all, I'm looking for a new camera. Here is what I'm looking for:

    Budget
    -$300-$400

    Size
    -Compact, though it doesn't have to be ultra-compact. I want it to be able to fit into my pocket without too much trouble.

    Features

    How many megapixels will suffice for you?
    - 7 to 10 megapixels

    * What optical zoom will you need? (None, Standard = 3x-4x, Ultrazoom = 10x-12x)
    -I'd like ultra zoom, but picture quality is more important.

    * How important is “image quality” to you? (Rate using a scale of 1-10)
    -9

    Do you care for manual exposure modes (shutter priority, aperture priority, manual)?
    -No, I don't know how to use that stuff very well, so the easier to point and shoot the better.

    General Usage

    * What will you generally use the camera for?
    -My young daughter and nephews.

    * Will you be making big prints of your photos or not?
    -Rarely, if ever.

    Will you be shooting a lot of indoor photos or low light photos?
    -Probably a lot of indoors

    Will you be shooting sports and/or action photos?
    -Occasionally

    Miscellaneous

    Are there particular brands you like or hate?
    -HATE Canon (Had the e18 error, they wouldn't fix it despite being under warranty, I'll never buy a Canon again).

    Are there particular models you already have in mind?
    I bought the Panasonic DMC-TMZ3, but am considering returning it. I had better picture quality on my Canon SD900 that had the e18 error. Maybe the TMZ3 is too advanced for me, and requires playing around with settings to get the good PQ. I'd like an alternative.

    (If applicable) Do you need any of the following special features? (Wide Angle, Image Stabilization, Weatherproof, Hotshoe, Rotating LCD)
    -Not necessary.

    Also, I would want something that uses SD cards (so Sony, for example, is out, I believe), as I have about 10 GB worth of SD memory cards that I don't want to re-buy.

    Thanks in advance for any recommendations. If you think the Panasonic TMZ3 is still a good bet, but have any advice on the picture quality or a setting that I could use pretty consistently without altering it very much, I would gladly listen to such advice.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2007
  2. Ben Stafford

    Ben Stafford Site Admin

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    I like the TZ3 for it's long zoom, quick speed and 3 inch screen, but if you don't like the image quality, then you don't like it. You can tweak sharpness, contrast, and saturation, but I think that's all.

    If Canon and Sony are out, that actually rules out quite a few cameras.

    For good low-light performance check out the Fujifilm Finepix F40fd or F50fd. (The F50fd is pretty new, so I haven't seen any reviews yet). They don't have long zooms, but they're great indoors.

    If you can find a Nikon Coolpix P5000 or P5100 in your price range, it's a good camera. It's a fairly advanced point and shoot, but it does a good job and it's nice and compact. It has more features than you would use, but the image quality is good.
     
  3. usapatriot

    usapatriot Well-Known Member

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    Well, actually, thanks to the 12 megapixels of the F50fd and the missing Super CCD in the Fuji F50fd the reign of great indoor shooting and good high ISO performance are over.
     
  4. Ben Stafford

    Ben Stafford Site Admin

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    LOL, I was about to ask usapatriot about what brought on all the doom and gloom!
     
  5. samste

    samste New Member

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    after two months of reading comments on every digital camera review site, still i can not decide i am interesting in Sony (T100, T200) or Canon (SD1000). i need a camera for normal use . image quality is a must and some features will help. i do not wanna regret for buying any. night shoots, high ISO , indoor and outdoor pics. i am really confused,, they say that Sony image quality is too far better than Canon . i don`t know. ultra compact, from $300-$400 ..

    Need your advice..
     
  6. MiamiSpartan

    MiamiSpartan New Member

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    Thanks for the feedback, Ben. The wife and I talked about it, and we're going to stick with the TZ3. The fact that we liked everything else about it (especially the 10x zoom and the wide angle lens, as well as a few of the features), was enough for us to keep it despite not being crazy about the PQ.

    As we tested some things, it seems that our problems with the picture quality were not so much with the quality of the original pictures, but rather that the problems got amplified when we zoomed in on pictures already taken (either while reviewing on the camera or on the computer). Our old Canon looked better when doing that. But the original pictures without zooming much, or when printing even 8x10, looked great. But the zoom when taking the original pictures eliminates the need of having to do as much zooming and cropping when playing with the pictures after the fact.
     
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