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Thread: Compact disaster! Need advice on replacement camera

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    Adrian's Avatar
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    Compact disaster! Need advice on replacement camera

    We have just returned from a canoeing trip. This included an unplanned dunking and my Panasonic TZ3 now resides at the bottom of a river.

    This was not my main camera as I have a digital SLR, but I would like to replace it as it is often handy to have a truly pocket sized camera to hand.

    Which brings me to the question, what is currently the best of breed in this sector?

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    Re: Compact disaster!

    As ever on such a question, I must ask what is your budget?

    There are such a proliferation of such cameras on the market at present, the best way to drill down is to decide on a price range firstly.

    Equally if there are any special features you feel that you cannot manage without, then post those too and it will allow others to see where you are coming from.

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    Re: Compact disaster!

    Well, I chose the TZ3 - almost a year ago, because it had the following useful features:

    Quite good 10X optical zoom
    Leica lens
    Small size - can be put in a pocket.
    Good quality finish in silver and black anodized aluminum
    3" screen

    I can replace it currently for about 180 including a memory card. So I suppose a budget of 200 is reasonable. More than that and I would rather be putting the money to an L series lens for the 40D.

    The camera is used as a carry around when we don't want to lug the 40D around. It has thus captured some good shots when we have been doing family things or come across something unexpected.

    My reservations about replacing it like for like are:

    1 Hopeless indoor performance
    2 Screen difficult to see in sunlight
    3 Slightly soft image quality at times. (I am not expecting DSLR standards).

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    Re: Compact disaster!

    I have personally been very happy with the new Canon PowerShot G9, but this appears to be just above your budget...esp if purchased in the UK. In the US it is around $400 new. This is what I use as a backup/lightweight alternative to the Canon 5D.

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    Re: Compact disaster!

    Thanks McQ. I have looked at the G9, and I know it os a good camera, but I do not consider it to be small enough. If I am carrying that, I might as well have the 40D with a short zoom.

    I want something that will not mark me out as a photographer, and which will be discreet if we are, say, just out shopping or for lunch. And that will not raise objections if I pop it into my girlfriend's handbag!

    But which will still take good photos...

    Given that I am accident prone (remember I also dropped the 40D and damaged a lens) I am thinking about the shockproof and waterproof Olympus. Ideal for on the beach on holiday?

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    Re: Compact disaster!

    You might want to consider the Ricoh G600 versus the Olympus - but it's quite expensive.
    Those Olys have been criticized for picture quality and lack of manual controls. But quite honestly, if I want a small cam that can withstand all weather and abuse, I wouldn't mind it being a bit suboptimal in image quality.

    The pentax have a waterproof optio wp and its predecessors, but I don't believe it is crash proof.

    The Ricoh: www.dpreview.com/news/0804/08042201ricohg600.asp

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    Re: Compact disaster!

    Thanks. I have never seen the Ricoh in the shops. I have handled the Oly and it is certainly small. I went into a dealer this week and was astounded that the only thing the salesperson went on about was pixel count and what kind of memory cards do I have. It was as if cameras were ranked mainly by pixel count. There was no other meaningful attempt at differentiation. Maybe they really are all much of a muchness.

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    Re: Compact disaster! Need advice on replacement camera

    I'm sure you've already bought a camera by now but I got my stepdad the Canon SD750 and he's been quite happy with it. Large LCD screen in the back. Although it only has 3x optical zoom (where as I think you stated the other one had 10?)

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