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Digital Camera Recommendations

AlassŽa Eruvande
Valinor


Apr 29 2009, 11:22pm

Post #1 of 19 (353 views)
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Digital Camera Recommendations Can't Post

I was wondering if anyone could recommend a brand/type of digital camera?
I just want to take good pictures of my kids and other family fun. I currently use a really nice 35mm film point-and-shoot type camera, but the places to get film developed are fast becoming obsolete.

We have an older digital camera that I absolutely hate. It doesn't take that great of pictures and it eats batteries. I think we got it when digital cameras first started to become affordable and we paid about $200 for it. It sucks, though, and I refuse to use it, especially when I get better pictures on 35 mm film.

I suppose the price range would be around $200-$300 that I'm willing to spend (max). But feel free to recommend something more expensive if you think it is really worth it!

What sort of things should I look for when I'm shopping? What should I avoid? Any advice would be really appreciated. I'll check back in the morning. Thanks in advance.

Four Founders
...In honor of
...
......TORN's annual
......Founder's Day Celebration
...........Established 4/26/09


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SFTH Archive


Aunt Dora Baggins
Half-elven


Apr 30 2009, 12:05am

Post #2 of 19 (220 views)
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I have a Kodak Easy Share that I really like [In reply to] Can't Post

link (I got mine at Walmart for about $100) It's kind of a pain to get the photos off it, but they come out really nice for such an inexpensive camera. Uncle Baggins has one (I'll have to look it up) that was much more expensive. It takes nice photos, and has a better telephoto, but the colors aren't as good. I'm at work, and he's out and may have the camera with him, but I'll try to look it up and get back.

Oh, and mine takes two AA batteries, which is *much* better than a special camera battery. Uncle Baggins is always swearing at his batteries, and they're very expensive. Mine last a long time, and are inexpensive to replace. (You can use rechargable ones, but the alkaline ones work too.)

Here's one of my photos. (It's kind of small because I resized it. But you can see how the colors came out.)


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories

leleni at hotmail dot com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



(This post was edited by Aunt Dora Baggins on Apr 30 2009, 12:14am)


Aunt Dora Baggins
Half-elven


Apr 30 2009, 1:32am

Post #3 of 19 (209 views)
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OK, his is a Lumix DMC FZ8 [In reply to] Can't Post

link

and mine is a C 613, a slightly different model from the one I linked above.

His is very nice, but it's pretty big (looks like an old SLR camera). It does take great telephoto shots. In this post, he took the middle photo, and I took the other two. He used a tripod and I didn't, so I was pretty impressed with how well my camera did for just holding it.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories

leleni at hotmail dot com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



(This post was edited by Aunt Dora Baggins on Apr 30 2009, 1:33am)


Aunt Dora Baggins
Half-elven


Apr 30 2009, 1:52am

Post #4 of 19 (203 views)
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In that last link [In reply to] Can't Post

I was mistaken: the third photo was also his. here's one I took, with no tripod, in pretty low light.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"For DORA BAGGINS in memory of a LONG correspondence, with love from Bilbo; on a large wastebasket. Dora was Drogo's sister, and the eldest surviving female relative of Bilbo and Frodo; she was ninety-nine, and had written reams of good advice for more than half a century."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"A Chance Meeting at Rivendell" and other stories

leleni at hotmail dot com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



SirDennisC
Half-elven


Apr 30 2009, 2:56am

Post #5 of 19 (170 views)
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Not sure [In reply to] Can't Post

of a brand (I prefer Canon, Olympus, or Pentax) but you should look at things such as: optical zoom (better than digital); the highest megapixels you can afford; lens quality. A high megapixel camera with crappy lenses or digital zoom will not suffice. Better a lower mega pixel with a higher optical zoom and glass lenses by a reputable firm.


Eledhwen
Forum Admin / Moderator


Apr 30 2009, 7:32am

Post #6 of 19 (185 views)
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I don't know about prices [In reply to] Can't Post

But I have an Olympus u730, bought a couple of years ago, and I love it. It's water resistant - so works in the rain, or at the beach, or if you get sprayed inadvertently - is dead easy to use, and does movies too. I know a few people with Olympuses and they all seem happy with them.

Look for durability. You want a decent megapixel size - that's for the quality of the picture - preferably 7 or above. Get something with a reasonable zoom. Apart from that, I'm not sure there's that much difference between cameras these days.

Soren Larsen

Off to sea ...


NottaSackville
Tol Eressea

Apr 30 2009, 1:09pm

Post #7 of 19 (295 views)
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OK, I'm a completely biased source [In reply to] Can't Post

Right up front, I'll say that I work for Kodak. But to be honest, as a pretty ungruntled (degruntled? less-than-averagely-gruntled?) employee, I'm usually less likely to recommend a Kodak product than some unbiased sources... Wink

And to be clear, everything I say in this note is as an unofficial consumer, not as an official employee...(legal stuff and all that, you know)

But I will say that our digital cameras are good products. We've been #1 in digital camera share for a number of years now, and I think it is for a good reason. I rarely hear much for complaints from people that have our cameras, so I feel pretty safe recommending them. Aunt Dora said it was difficult to get the pictures off her Easy Share camera, which surprises me since that is supposed to be a strong selling point for those cameras - and something people often complement our cameras for. Aunt Dora - do you have a Easy Share Dock? I recommend getting a Dock with Easy Share cameras (sometimes they are extra...) The Dock is a station that stays connected to the computer and you just plop the camera on the dock, press a button and the pictures upload to the computer - at least in theory - and also recharges the batteries.

A few things to look for:

1) Viewfinder, or no viewfinder? The current fad is to produce cameras with no viewfinder and large LCD screens. That's great, until you want to take a picture in bright sunlight and you can't see the screen. My preference is for a viewfinder, but that's a personal thing.

2) Batteries - I agree with Aunt Dora's comments that AA are more convenient than special camera batteries - it makes it easy to bring spares and pick up extra when you are on a trip. However, I think the smaller cameras these days go mainly with special batteries that are smaller and flatter. I recommend buying a second battery for your camera if you plan to go on trips with it.

3) Refurbished models. Kodak offers refurbished cameras for (at a quick glance) about 25% off the price of new cameras. I HIGHLY recommend buying a refurbished model if you buy a Kodak camera. We own one, my brother owns one, my in-laws own one and my parents own one, and combined we've had exactly 0 problems with them, and you can't tell they aren't brand new.

Just a few thoughts - if you have any questions I'd be happy to try to answer -

Notta


NottaSackville
Tol Eressea

Apr 30 2009, 1:47pm

Post #8 of 19 (162 views)
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Slight correction [In reply to] Can't Post

I said in my note that Kodak has been #1 in digital camera sales for some time now. I can't find the source for that, so I don't know whether that is for a specific geographic region, market segment, or what.

So that that info with a grain of salt if you take it at all -

Thanks -

Notta


AlassŽa Eruvande
Valinor


Apr 30 2009, 2:34pm

Post #9 of 19 (137 views)
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Those are some good pics. [In reply to] Can't Post

I think the little Easy share might be something to look into. And the fact that it takes regular batteries is a plus.
Thanks for the info!



And suddenly the Ainur saw afar off a light, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame.


AlassŽa Eruvande
Valinor


Apr 30 2009, 2:35pm

Post #10 of 19 (163 views)
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Good advice. [In reply to] Can't Post

I knew about the optical vs. digital zoom stuff, but I didn't think about the lens quality. I'll have to do some research on good ones.
Thanks, Dennis!



And suddenly the Ainur saw afar off a light, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame.


AlassŽa Eruvande
Valinor


Apr 30 2009, 2:36pm

Post #11 of 19 (165 views)
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Good to know about the durability stuff. [In reply to] Can't Post

Around kids, you never know what to expect! Crazy

Thanks for the number of megapixels. Most people say to get a lot, but never say what exactly is "a lot". Smile



And suddenly the Ainur saw afar off a light, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame.


AlassŽa Eruvande
Valinor


Apr 30 2009, 2:42pm

Post #12 of 19 (180 views)
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Oh, good suggestion about the refurbished models! [In reply to] Can't Post

I hadn't considered that, mainly because I didn't know there was such a thing.
And the suggestion about the viewfinder is so right. I have used other people's cameras without a viewfinder and it is sometimes hard to see what you're photographing. Plus, that part seems to chew up the batteries faster on our stupid digital camera.

And I'm glad you're gruntled in your work. Smile



And suddenly the Ainur saw afar off a light, as it were a cloud with a living heart of flame.


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Apr 30 2009, 3:24pm

Post #13 of 19 (157 views)
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I got my brother [In reply to] Can't Post

a refurbished Olympus for Christmas and he loves it. It was still eligible for the company warranty, and I bought him an extended warranty just in case.

He wanted at least 5x Optical zoom. There's two types of zoom - optical and digital. Get the most of both that you can afford.

Most digital cameras come with a minimal amount of memory and you'll need to purchase additional memory, so you need to factor that in to your costs. It's not much - maybe $40-$50, but most cameras work significantly better with the additional memory.

I got my brother a refurbished Olympus FE-350 with additional memory and an extended warranty for about $100.

Each cloak was fastened about the neck with a brooch like a green leaf veined with silver.

`Are these magic cloaks? ' asked Pippin, looking at them with wonder.

`I do not know what you mean by that,' answered the leader of the Elves.



NARF since 1974.
Balin Bows


GaladrielTX
Tol Eressea


Apr 30 2009, 5:23pm

Post #14 of 19 (196 views)
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They make a good product. [In reply to] Can't Post

Our Kodak Easy Share is a few years old, but we find it takes great pics and is very easy to use, especially with the dock we bought for it that both immediately downloads photos to a PC and recharges the batteries.

We use the dock for downloading less now than we used to, though. I originally bought the camera for UT as a present, and we attached the dock to his desktop computer. What turned out to happen was I ended up using the camera more than he does! I have a laptop. He used to use our network to move the downloaded pictures from his computer to where I could grab them from my laptop, but we started having problems with that. The solution: we have a chip in the camera for extra memory so now I just pop the memory chip out of the camera and stick it in my computer without bothering him. We have some software that downloads the pix easily. So basically we only use the dock for battery recharging now.

~~~~~~~~

The TORNsib formerly known as Galadriel.



(This post was edited by GaladrielTX on Apr 30 2009, 5:24pm)


Aerin
Grey Havens


May 1 2009, 3:58am

Post #15 of 19 (159 views)
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Megapixels over 6 or so [In reply to] Can't Post

are overkill unless you intend to make large posters of your photos or use them in high-quality professional print publications. I'd look for the combination of features that best fits the kinds of pictures you take the most -- presets for things like landscapes and portraits can be timesavers. As others have said, optical zoom is important, as digital zoom introduces artifacts. Also, consider the bottom end of the zoom -- if you like to take really wide-angle shots, you need to start at the equivalent of 28 mm, rather than 35. If you want to take close-ups (e.g., flowers, butterflies, stuff to sell on eBay), be sure you have good macro capability -- check to see how close the camera can be to something and still focus.

For optical quality, the traditional camera-makers tend to be the best. I like Nikon, but my friends love their Olympuses or Canons. Even if you intend to order on line, try the cameras out in a store, if possible, to be sure the camera and controls feel comfortable.

Hobbit Family Histories


Owlyross
Rohan


May 1 2009, 2:49pm

Post #16 of 19 (171 views)
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Sony DSCH20 [In reply to] Can't Post

A very good digital camera. 10x zoom plus stabilisation. An intuitive menu, and very strong flash. It's also got two customisable settings if you fancy playing about with different things. Not too big, but quite robust too. The batteries are pretty good actually, and charge really quickly. You need a special adaptor, which it comes with. Highly recommended.

"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both."
Benjamin Franklin
The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.
Horace Walpole (1717 - 1797)


Owlyross
Rohan


May 1 2009, 2:53pm

Post #17 of 19 (150 views)
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The Panasonic Lumix DMCTZ7 [In reply to] Can't Post

Is very good also, was the other one we were looking at at the same time as the sony. The fact we'd had Sony before swung it. But it's also a really good camera.

"Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both."
Benjamin Franklin
The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.
Horace Walpole (1717 - 1797)


sherlock
Gondor


May 1 2009, 3:01pm

Post #18 of 19 (184 views)
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I got a Canon Power Shot [In reply to] Can't Post

SD880 IS Digital Elph for Christmas. My husband bought it for me and according to him it was one of the best for the money. I'm very happy with it. I believe he paid about $350 for it but it was a package that had an extra battery and 2GB memory card in addition to the one that comes with the camera.

Listen to me sounding like I know something about photography. My husband is the photographer in the family and he's been using his 35mm until he saw how much fun I was having with my digital camera and had to get one of his own. I wouldn't let him use my precious. I take it with me to work, the dog park and I've really gotten some great pictures and videos.


GaladrielTX
Tol Eressea


May 1 2009, 5:37pm

Post #19 of 19 (296 views)
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I should also mention it was a Consumer Reports Best Buy the year we bought it. / [In reply to] Can't Post

 

~~~~~~~~

The TORNsib formerly known as Galadriel.


 
 

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