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Thread: Point and shoot camera advice

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    Point and shoot camera advice

    I want to buy a good quality point & shoot that offers potential to change settings as my experience grows. Auto functions need to be suitable for scenes and close up photos. I am hiking in Tasmania and want a light weight, pocket camera with ease of use. I hope to use some of my landscape shots in large wall photo's approx. (11" x 14") There are so many cameras in this catagory and I am getting very confused. The Nikon 1 V2 sounds great but the price tag is higher than I was expecting to pay. Can anyone offer some advise on what to look for?

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Hello and welcome to CiC. I hope you'll maybe want to become a regular member of the forum and, if so, that would be great.

    So that you don't continue to get people asking you what your proper name is, because most us use that on here, you can go to Edit Profile and enter your proper name under 'Real Name'. Then it will appear underneath your Username in all your posts. You can also enter your location so that it does the same, just as in my details alongside this message. Then we all know where everyone is in the world.

    You say 'point and shoot', but I think what you're maybe meaning is a step up from that and that you're talking about compact cameras.

    Obviously, I don't know how far you've looked and what your budget is. All the 'big names' in that sector are producing good quality cameras and the basic rule of thumb is that you're not going to go too far wrong with whatever you end up with.

    As well as Nikon and Canon, of course, the other big players in that market are Panasonic, Pentax, Olympus, Sony. A lot of people have spoken very highly of the Panasonic Lumix range. But given I don't own such a camera I cannot give any personal recommendation.

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Hello Swaz and welcome.

    Without knowing your budget it is difficult to suggest a camera, or a range of cameras.

    I found this link http://www.cameralabs.com/buyers_gui...l_camera.shtml Sorry it is an English link so may not be that useful in Australia, but it may give a few ideas.

    Have you considered a bridge camera? Not as compact as a P&S but much less bulky than a DSLR, and they usually have more features than a P&S.

    The only one I know is the Panasonic FZ28. This is an old camera now and Panasonic have added a number of models in the last few years. The current top of the FZ range is the FZ 200 - expensive for a bridge camera, but a lot less than the Nikon 1 V2, and with a 25-600mm zoom which is a constant f2.8 throughout the range.

    However, as has already been said all manufacturers produce very capable cameras.

    I don't know what photo magazines are like in Australia but here many have mini reviews of different cameras almost every month. If your mags are similar it could be a place to start narrowing down the choice, before moving to more detailed reviews.

    Dave

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Consider the Panasonic FZ 200 bridge camera...

    If I wanted a small camera but was willing and able to carry about 537+ grams; I would consider the FZ 200 very seriously. The camera is listed as 537 grams WITHOUT battery; as if anyone would carry this camera without a battery. However, the cost may be a bit over what you expect to pay.

    On the plus side, the camera has a constant f/2.8 lens with a comparative (compared to 35mm full frame) 28-600mm lens. That is mind boggling to me! It also has an eye-level viewfinder (electronic) so you are not reduced to framing your shots using an LCD in bright sunlight.

    Additionally, the camera has a hotshoe. This last is quite important because using a separate flash will provide better lighting. As far as I know, the electronic shutter has no limitations as to shutter speed at which it will sync with flash. That makes is nice for fill flash outdoors...

    I am toying with getting one of these cameras to carry with me everywhere. It may be a bit big for that but, I like the bells and whistles on this model. I may not absolutely need this camera but, I am beginning to crave it which can be dangerous to my wallet...

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Worth consideration - Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7. Shooting modes - Auto, Scene, P, A (Av), S (Tv), M, HDMovie. Photo files - Jpeg and/or Raw. Big aperture zoom lens - 24mm to 90mm (35mm equivalent) f/1.4 - 2.3, with macro focus. Bigger sensor than usual - 1/1.7. Sensible pixel count - 10Mp max. Four shooting aspects - 1:1, 4:3, 3:2, 16:9. Pop-up flash AND a hot-shoe for a separate flash gun.

    Point and shoot camera advice

    Point and shoot camera advice

    Point and shoot camera advice

    Point and shoot camera advice

    Cheers.
    Philip

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    I suggest that you go to www.dpreview.com and first look at the specification pages and then if the model has been tested there will be examples. I have been using Panasonic cameras, the FZ range and now their M4/3 for some time now and not looking elsewhere. The FZ is good but doesn't come under the heading of compact, even the small FZ and the larger FZ such as the FZ200 are pretty much the same as a smaller DSLR. The M4/3 as quite small and being part way to the usual DSLR in sensor size give excellent quality but so do the compact cameras in the Pany range in good light situations ... the LX7 comes from highly regarded predecessors, LX3 and LX5, but has a limited zoom range. The TS and S range do not have the manual controls you want, minimum would be PASM. But the ZS do ... That is just Panasonic, I am sure you will find similar with other makers .... then you work out what you want to spend
    That is an FZ50 in my avatar so you can see it is quite chunky ... why I like it.

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Quote Originally Posted by swaz View Post
    I want to buy a good quality point & shoot that offers potential to change settings as my experience grows. Auto functions need to be suitable for scenes and close up photos. I am hiking in Tasmania and want a light weight, pocket camera with ease of use. I hope to use some of my landscape shots in large wall photo's approx. (11" x 14") There are so many cameras in this catagory and I am getting very confused. The Nikon 1 V2 sounds great but the price tag is higher than I was expecting to pay. Can anyone offer some advise on what to look for?
    I picked up an FZ200 a month ago as a "backup" to my SLR... I'm quite happy with it. Manual zoom and an eye level sensor for the electronic view finder would make it better, but it has enough flexibility/modes/settings to let you experiment with aperature, shutter speed, white balance, RAW files and so on.

    It is not, however, a "pocket camera" unless you have very large pockets.

    Regards
    Martin

  8. #8
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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Quote Originally Posted by swaz View Post
    I want to buy a good quality point & shoot that offers potential to change settings as my experience grows. Auto functions need to be suitable for scenes and close up photos. I am hiking in Tasmania and want a light weight, pocket camera with ease of use. I hope to use some of my landscape shots in large wall photo's approx. (11" x 14") There are so many cameras in this catagory and I am getting very confused. The Nikon 1 V2 sounds great but the price tag is higher than I was expecting to pay. Can anyone offer some advise on what to look for?
    I suggest you narrow the field by having a look at various models and deciding what is the maximum size you feel comfortable with to take hiking. Also give some thought to what sort of photos you want to take. If it is mainly landscapes, a zoom range of around 4X should suffice.

    If you want to allow for more than auto shooting in the future, I'd suggest you go for a high end compact

    eg
    Canon S110, G15 or possibly the G1X.
    Sony RX100
    Panasomic LX7

    There will be other similar cameras in the other brands too. The above models have larger sensors than your standard models (some larger than others) and can shoot in full manual (including manual focus) and also can capture in RAW format.

    Once you have a better feel for things, compare specs and performance at a site like dpreview.

    Oh and dont forget to factor into your budget a decent case, a second battery and a couple of good quality SD cards (maybe 16GB).

    Dave

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Take a look at the M43 cameras (micro four thirds, 4/3 being the ratio of the sides of the sensor) mentioned a couple of posts above by someone else without a name.

    I was in my local shop on Friday (just for a visit) and they showed me an Olympus EM5. One of the kit lenses is a 12-40 (I think), which in FF terms converts to a 24-80 lens. If I had $1200 CAD that had to be spent on a camera, this would be the one.

    Thinking out loud, I'm wondering where Sony is with the 4/3 system. The Exmor sensor technology used in the newest Nikons should appear soon (developed by Sony), but I haven't seen it yet.

    IMO, this system is better than the PS system - the 4/3 sensor isn't much smaller than APS-C which is used by many photographers.

    Glenn

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Quote Originally Posted by swaz View Post
    I want to buy a good quality point & shoot that offers potential to change settings as my experience grows. Auto functions need to be suitable for scenes and close up photos. I am hiking in Tasmania and want a light weight, pocket camera with ease of use. I hope to use some of my landscape shots in large wall photo's approx. (11" x 14") There are so many cameras in this catagory and I am getting very confused. The Nikon 1 V2 sounds great but the price tag is higher than I was expecting to pay. Can anyone offer some advise on what to look for?
    Several contributions seem to have strayed away from this wish list, by suggesting much bigger and/or more costly cameras or systems. However, the Canon S110 and Lumix LX7 do seem to fit the list quite well, although I have experience of only the LX7:

    good quality - tick
    point and shoot (compact) - tick
    potential to change settings - tick
    auto functions...scenes - tick
    close up photos - tick
    light weight - tick
    pocket camera - tick
    ease of use - tick
    price compared with V2 - tick

    The camera in use - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pYTR2JW1X9M

    Cheers.
    Philip

  11. #11
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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    If your considering the Nikon V2 I would also consider the V1 which really offers no downside (I actually think it's better having less pixels on the 1" size sensor) and I've seen deals recently for $299 including the kit lens. Here's a link comparing specs between the two:
    http://nikonrumors.com/2012/10/24/ni...mparison.aspx/

    I'd also cast a vote towards the micro 4/3 cameras if the Nikon V2 size isn't too big, some of the 4/3 cameras are as small and only a little bigger with kit lens: http://camerasize.com/compare/#392,387

    The newer micro 4/3 cameras can range in price but the Olympus E-PM2 is going for $599 with kit lens which is still less than the V2 and offers better quality (has the same sensor as the Olympus OM-D E-M5 mentioned by Glenn) but only offers an add-on viewfinder unlike the one built into the V2. If you don't need the latest and greatest micro 4/3 camera then the older models can be had for a great deal ($300 and under) and I use one regularly and love it (Olympus E-PL2).

    If you don't want to enter into the world of interchangeable lens cameras (which can get expensive over time) I would highly recommend looking at the Sony RX100. It's not cheap for a pocket camera (although less than a Nikon V2) but really delivers on image quality and usability for something that small.

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    Re: Point and shoot camera advice

    Woops - lost my log in for short time with all the notes i have squiggled during this research exercise. Thankyou for all this great advise. I have found this purchase harder than buying a car even though it's a fraction of the cost. In terms of dollar value and the camera functions (which I aspire to using) I am now leaning towards an SLR. This style of camera is not compact like my first choice and the recomendations given, but some of the entry level SLR's have been worthwhile looking at. At the moment the Ausie market place is offering the Sony A37 at good price and I think I could manage the size as well. The specs put this little camera ahead of the lineup in this catagory and the reviews not bad either. I just hope it isn't too advanced for this novice. (I realise it's not a true SLR because of the lens setup) The dpreview site has been invaluable so now I will compare the specs of the recomendations given here before heading back to the shops. Hopefully next time I will have some photos to share.

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