Newby's Questions, leading to exciting new camera purchase :o)

Discussion in 'What Camera Should I Buy?' started by jacknscoob, Jul 7, 2012.

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  1. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Member

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    Hi Andy and Everyone

    I am not looking for camera recommendations straight away, I'd like to give you some background first, also to help me understand my (your) camera choice by going through a few steps first.

    Objective: looking to buy a super duper new camera.

    Budget: $200-350 (pls note camera's over $250, I will need a real or a plausable imaginary easily explanable reason to spend this extra money to my husband ;) I cannot see this being a problem.

    Reason for new camera: I am looking to 'get into' photography, start a new hobby. I do not have any aspirations above my basic station :)

    Size: Not looking for travel slimline but not a camera that needs a separate handbag, something in between.

    Things I think I dont need: Extra lenses to screw on and cart about. Extra flashes stuck on the top like the professionals.

    Functions I need:
    - Very quick ability to take picture ie no lag between pressing the button and the picture being taken. So that the click of the camera button actually takes the photo of what you can see (what is the techy term for this?)
    - Timer - various settings
    - Good optical zoom
    - Anti-shake thingy
    - Ability to shoot video in the dark to a 'fair/good' standard
    - Click the button and it takes 10 pics at once
    - Ability to photograph an object yet the background is out of focus (if that makes sense)
    - Fuction setting that makes me look slim in every shot

    Probable things I'd like to photograph:
    Surf / sea (not under water)
    Animals
    Landscapes
    People

    OK, so if you havent dropped off asleep, my first real question is that I think I need a viewfinder. All the cameras without one which only have a screen, whatever the quality of the screen, I cant always see what I am photographing. So what do you guys think? Do I need one?

    Looking forward to hearing from you

    :D
     
  2. Andy Stanton

    Andy Stanton Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    Almost all pocket-sized cameras, even those with long zoom lenses, lack viewfinders. Most have very sharp LCD screens with several brightness levels so you can see what you're shooting. Larger cameras, that have more of a "professional" look, do have viewfinders and may be an option for you. Here are two examples of long zoom cameras from Panasonic - the FZ47 has a viewfinder and the ZS15 doesn't.

    FZ47
    panasonic-fz47-fr-580.jpg

    ZS15
    images.jpg
     
  3. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Member

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    Hi Andy

    Thanks. I had a look at the Panasonic FZ47, prob too expensive for us. We talking Australian dollars, not sure I mentioned the currency.

    I think I have def decided that I would like a view finder, even if it is one that can be used just when it is sunny.

    Andy, when I am looking at the reviews, what is the term I am looking for for the speed eg. the camera actually taking the picture of what you actually see and not what happens after the subject has moved.

    Also, if a camera had an external microphone does that mean that if you take video the sound is better, should I be looking for one of them?

    I dont mind the 'chunkier' cameras if it gives me the functions i need.

    :D
     
  4. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Member

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    Andy

    What are your views of the PowerShot SX40 HS?

    Thanks x
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2012
  5. Andy Stanton

    Andy Stanton Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    The SX40 is excellent, similar to the Panasonic FZ47 but considerably more expensive (in the US anyway).
     
  6. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Member

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    Hi Andy

    As I live in Australia what website would you recommend for me to get a quick price guide just to compare cameras.

    Thanks
     
  7. Andy Stanton

    Andy Stanton Super Moderator Super Moderator

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  8. KCook

    KCook Well-Known Member

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  9. jacknscoob

    jacknscoob Member

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    Andy

    Another quick question:

    What would be the greatest optical zoom that would be effective (using the IS function) for someone with a tendancy to have slightly shakey hands to be able to hold the camera and not have to use a tripod to take a shot. At what point (level of zoom) would it become tricky and the level of high zoom would be wasted?
     
  10. Andy Stanton

    Andy Stanton Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    Generally speaking the more optical zoom you use the harder it is to get a non-blurry picture, but there's no bright line. It's easier to keep a camera from shaking if you use the viewfinder since you can prop up the camera against your forehead but even doing that there's going to be some possibility of blur from camera shake, especially when a long zoom is used.
     
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