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Thread: New member seeking advice on Bridge Camera

  1. #1
    New Member
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Good evening to all,

    My name Paul and I live in Oxford UK, I will admit I'm a novice when it comes to photography at the moment but I am keen to learn, which is why I have become a member here (recommended by another user of course) I am currently trying to decide which bridge camera would be good for me, I don't want to spend the earth on a camera (yet) as I don't feel having an expensive camera and little talent will really help in the long run.
    I am looking to spend roughly 200-300 uk sterling on a camera, I must say I have trawled web sites and specs with little success of an actual decision as yet but have been highly confused, if anyone could help me out of point me in the right direction, it would be greatly appreciated

  2. #2
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Paul

    As advised, I have copied your introductory post in here. Now, hopefully, more people will see it and come in with their ideas.

  3. #3
    The Blue Boy's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Hi Paul,

    I bought a bridge camera when I finally bit the the bullet and moved over from film. I can't remember the model number or even the specs, but it was a Fujifilm. I bought it for two reasons. It was affordable as a "training" camera. And it had a Fujinon zoom lens. I didn't understand raw capture or white balance at the time, it was then that Google made the miracle and brought me here!

    Here's one of the first pics I took with it, (when I went to fetch the link, I saw the model was a Fujifilm finepix S5600)

    New member seeking advice on  Bridge Camera

    Hope this helps a little bit mate. But I would add, get a DSLR. We're here to help you learn how to use one after all.

  4. #4
    New Member
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Thanks for the advice Mark, interestingly I was looking at a fujifilm s4000 and panasonic fz45 or 48 and my friend suggested the Canon SX30 IS but if bought in the UK the canon was around 330ish. I am also a little fearful of getting a DSLR as I know I'll end up spending alot more cash on lenses, filters etc, although I would like a Nikon D3000 if the truth be known.

    Cracking photo by the way
    Last edited by Pjohnson; 22nd August 2011 at 09:32 PM. Reason: Got models numbers wrong

  5. #5
    The Blue Boy's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    I am also a little fearful of getting a DSLR as I know I'll end up spending alot more cash on lenses, filters etc
    I chuckled at this mate. Photography is, unfortunately, one of the most expensive hobbies there is. (Read some of the tripod threads!) Always the axiom, "buy cheap, buy twice".

    In fact, I honestly think with the advance of sites such as this one (it is the best) there really is no need for beginners to be concerned about asking for advice and help on any subject regards photography. The pros here prove that.

  6. #6
    Shadowman's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    There is a lot to consider when purchasing a bridge camera, specifically what is the specification on its zoom range. You should be looking for optical zoom, not digital zoom and unfortunately most bridge cameras market themselves on their max zoom range (typically 24X). The s4000 is listed as a 30X optical/4 digital with 35mm lens equivalent range of 24-720mm. You may also want to consider a camera which stores files in RAW format, which this camera does not support. Uses 4 AA batteries so consider rechargeables. Maximum aperture f/11.

  7. #7
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Quote Originally Posted by The Blue Boy View Post
    Photography is, unfortunately, one of the most expensive hobbies there is. ~ Always the axiom, "buy cheap, buy twice".
    This is true, but you may well end up doing that anyway
    You get an entry level body like the D3000, then want the next level up within a year.

    I started 'digital' with a bridge camera for similar reasons as yourself, even though I had previously used film SLRs decades ago.

    It did me well for about a couple of years while I re-learnt the basics here, until I eventually 'outgrew' it, having learnt which features were important to me on the way, for a lot less than a D3000 and kit lens. It enabled me to bypass the entry level and go to a D5000 and a wide zoom - the latter because I had become accustomed to having the equivalent of 28-300mm and I didn't want to have less than that with my DSLR.

    That is a Fuji and now my daughter has it

    In order not to outgrow it too quick, and also build a firm foundation of PP knowledge, do make sure you get one that is capable of RAW shooting, ideally simultaneous RAW + jpg capture to ease the transition. Another must is an eye level viewfinder, it'll be electronic, but it is better than trying to shoot on an LCD alone in bright light. Don't go mad on zoom range, or you won't be able to afford to have it when you move to a DSLR (e.g. avoid 18x)

    I still haven't exhausted the D5000 yet, sure I'd like a D7000, if only because of better lens compatibility, but I really don't need it, I'd learn more from spending on another lens, or a P&S so I always have one on me.

    Enough ramblings; welcome to the CiC forums from ....

  8. #8
    FrankMi's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Hi Paul, and welcome to CiC. I've been looking for a pocket camera for a while and prior to getting my first DSLR in February, shot for years with a bridge camera Sony DSC-42 then a Sony DSC H1. I still have and use both of them.

    It's almost impossible to get RAW and Zoom in the same pocket camera and of the two, I would say that even though I shoot exclusively in RAW with my DSLR, it's the Zoom that I prefer for a bridge camera. I can't afford to replace the 12X zoom in my Sony DSC H1 but the 55-300mm gets me close.

    The old Sony's I use has the eye level viewfinder and the LCD screen but I have always used the viewfinder so the transition to the DSLR was easy in that respect. By the way, you don't HAVE to use a DSLR to get award winning photos but it does make post processing considerably easier. About the only drawback for me to using the H1 in place of a pocket camera is its size - it is definitely not pocketable.

    The H1 is out of date and only has 5MP, but the viewfinder and 12X zoom have proven to be a good combination for me in a bridge camera.

    If you toy with the idea of getting a D3000, compare the reviews with a D3100. It is a significantly better entry level DSLR. When I can get 12x zoom and RAW in a pocketable camera, that would be my next choice. If I were to move up from the D3100, I'd likely go to a D7000, unless the D7100 is out by then. I won't recommend a current bridge camera as I haven't done the research but the features that have been mentioned in this thread should help you narrow your search. Hope this helps.
    Last edited by FrankMi; 23rd August 2011 at 12:27 AM.

  9. #9
    tbob's Avatar
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    Re: NEW MEMBER? please introduce yourself here

    Consider buying a discontinued entry level DSLR camera. The one I started with is a Nikon D40 which is still available through eBay (here is a sample from today; http://www.ebay.ca/sch/i.html?_nkw=n....c0.m270.l1311). This is the digital camera I started with, so it is the only one I am familiar with but I suppose most other manufacturers have a similar camera kicking about in their history. If you can get the kit with two lenses it makes a really good starter set.

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