Best Digital Camera?

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Old 12-11-03, 07:04 PM
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Question Best Digital Camera?

Can anyone give me a start in what direction I need to go with knowledge on digital cameras?


I bought a $39 dollar camera that doubles as a webcam and at the time it worked for some images for email.

Grainy, window never matches the pictures and nothing ever sharp.

I got what I pay for.....and it eats up even the lithium batteries like crazy.


I did a little reading about megapixels....the more the better.....and I need this camera for numerous reasons.



I need one with a flash......one that zooms,,,,one that can either get close in areas where I am shooting pictures of drain piping configs or up through a chase in a wall.




I was told the range is $200 to $400 for a good one......and this is going to be a one shot trot so I want something compatible to my computer either by USB port or disc that I can downoad from.


I don't know any names in cameras whatsoever.....and it seems already that everyone has a good one........but which one?



I would appreciate numerous replies on this one........thanks.
 
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Old 12-11-03, 08:39 PM
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Bought a Canon PowerShot A70 two weeks ago, great as a point & shoot. A60 is the same model, less megaixels. A80 has more features and different menus/buttons. 2, 3, and 400.00 respectively.
Note that there are additional lenses available, such as one for up close shots. All use AA batteries (big advantage, alkaline or rechargables (PSA60/70 starter kit includes exact camera case and batteries & charger for $50.00 in Best Buy)) and uses Compact Flash. 256MB costs about $75. That will hold several hundred full size & qty. images. Pictures are JPEG's.
Canon software can download and remotely control the camera. The image editing software is too simplistic, and only good for absolute novices in my opinion. Overall camera is very easy to grip, and is good for automatic functions, or shots using custom settings when desired.

gj
 
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Old 12-12-03, 05:56 AM
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There are several things to look for.

If you want zoom, make sure that the camera has an optical zoom. Digital zoom is worthless, as it does all it's zooming in software. You can get all the digital zoom you want when the picture is on your computer.

Look for a camera that comes with rechargeable batteries, or that you can buy rechargeable batteries for, and make sure that you have an extra battery (or set of batteries) charged for when the one in the camera dies. If your camera requires AA or AAA batteries, you can buy NiMH batteries and a charger for about $20.00 to $30.00, depending on how many batteries you need.

Have enough memory cards for the camera. Most people take many more digital pictures than they do film pictures, because digital pictures are 'free' to take and can be deleted without printing them. Have extra memory cards so you swap them out when they are full.

Take your pictures at the highest resolution possible. You can always lower the resolution on your PC if you want to email the picture to someone or put it on a web site. You can't add resolution back in if it's not there to begin with. Also, when adjusting a picture on your computer always work with a copy of the picture. never the original. Save the origina in case you mess up the copy.

Any good camera these days will come with USB a connection for your computer, along with software for connecting the camera to computer. most also come with some form of editing software.

Don't go less that 3 megapixels. If you want real good pictures then don't go below 4 megapixels.

For greatest flexibility, make sure that the camera has many settings and/or at least that it has the settings you want.

Impersonally have used Kodak and am now using a Canon. Models come and go quickly, so unless someone just bought one, their model may nopt even be available anymore.
 
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Old 12-12-03, 07:42 AM
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2.0 2.1 all you need

I heard advise from a expert on that &
he said all anyone and everyone need Is
2.0 or 2.1 you do not need anything else?
I am not a expert on digital cameras..I'm
just passing on what this so called expert said
 
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Old 12-12-03, 02:38 PM
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Who is this expert?

2 meagpixels will get you an ok 4x6 print and thats it. It is way more than you need for the web. All you need for the web (email) is about 100K pixels.

If you are interested in finer details, then got 3 or 4 megapixels.

Ditto what Racraft said about zooms. If you really want digital zoom, get a good photo software (under $100).

And spend about $30 to get a USB card reader for whatever memory type you have. Its better than using your camera and faster downloading, too. I think some of the Sony models will use a cd-r disc? (not sure if those models are still available).
 
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Old 12-12-03, 04:23 PM
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Smile All the numbers. How does it fit?

I too am looking for a good Digi Camera. One thing I do not hear a lot about is fit and feel.

There is a tendency in the Electronics World to build smaller & smaller. I don't care that in 2000 a Racoon could live in all the space left over by mini circuts. I would like a Camera that fits my hands.

I spent some time in Wal-Mart picking them up and getting the feel & most were as bad as those cell phones you need to dial with a pencil. I don't feel this way with many of the well designed 35mm Cameras.

6 megapixcil I want, PhotoShop 6 I have now, so when I find one that has interchangeble lenses & feels like it fits I'll buy. I'm going to a large Photography Store in the big City soon. Unlike WM I understand they carry the better models, so I'm sure to find more I may like.

Size & fit just another thing to look at when buying a Camera.
 
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Old 12-13-03, 04:50 PM
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I would like to thank green jacket, racraft, las, bobf and marturo for the information in this thread. You wouldn't believe the education it provided for me.



What I did was copy your all replies....sent it to wordpad and made a copy. I highlighted the points in everyone of your all's responses and went after the key points that were important.



I took the paper with me to Staples....and ended up at hh gregg.


The knowledge you all gave me was crucial because before my question to you all, I had not a clue what a megapixel was or optical zoom and all that lingo.

I went there informed and knew the tough questions to ask in determining brands and what it has and has not.


I spent over 45 minutes with a young lady discussing the back and forth issues......and it seemed like the knowledge you all provided was more than what she expected from a consumer.

A informed decision by all means.


The thing is..........I succumbed to price shopping and I will tell you why:


After 45 minutes of hammerin this lady on knowledge......I found out that by the time I would buy a $200 camera with 3 megapixels....I would come out of the building spending $350 between a memory card..charger, and carryin case.


The Kodak seemed good for the money......but she told me right before I almost bought the camera that there was a special battery in the camera that would require a specific charger that was $79.


The Canon was great in what it offered but her salesmanship was pushing me towards the Kodak the whole time. Granted...I knew she had some but not real sharp knowledge on the product.

I really wanted the 4 megapixel camera but realistically.....the camera is going to be used for taking plumbing pictures and then upload to my website....and I was told that in this process you lose clarity of the picture just in doing so.


Unfortunately,,her help was not rewarded because I ended up buying a Olympus 2.0 megapixel with 64 mb card and a 40 dollar charger with batteries and $10 case.

I ended up spending $230.00 out the door and I was told NOT to buy the extended warranty the store tries to sell you because it would not cover a simple drop of the camera. Money wasted I suppose.


Money influenced me on this decision solely for the reason that I was afraid to buy a high end camera since I would sometimes be using this with dirty hands....sometimes left in the truck....and it would be very painfull if I lost a $400 camera out of the truck.

This way it doesn't hurt as bad. I do have the name recognition of the product Olympus.....but I did not hear that name mentioned in here.

But the most important factor over all was simply that you all gave me great knowledge in a short notice and I did buy the camera well informed......and I greatly appreciate your efforts.



Thanks again.......Steve - Dunbar Plumber in Plumbing Forums
 
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Old 12-14-03, 07:40 AM
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Kinda late on this but you should be happy with the Olympus.

A friend has one and he likes it.

I'll just comment on digital zoom.

It doesn't take long for most people when researching cameras to find out that optical zoom provides the best image quality as compared to digital zoom.
This is because digital zoom just crops the picture in the camera, spacing out the pixels as it gets closer to a subject.
Most cameras cannot do as good a job as Photoshop as marturo has and so if one has this program you would be better off just using the camera's optical zoom to it's maximum and then do your zooming in photoshop.

As important as image quality is when using digital zoom another thing you can consider is perspective.
When using an optical zoom lens, as you increase the magnification, the image between the foreground and background compresses. This does not happen when using digital zoom.
This change in perspective allows an incredible amount of manipulation of what you are photographing.
This applies to anything whether it's close or far away.
An example is a portrait of a person.
If the picture were taken at the wide angle setting and you moved the camera to take a head shot you would give the subject an incredibly long nose, or the other way and shot it at maximum zoom, the effect would be to give the person a flat looking face with no detail.
D P can even use this effect by consciously zooming to affect the picture he wants to put on the web.
Depth of field will also help by blurring all but what he wants to show but that's a deep one.

Hey!, maybe marturo wants to mod a camera forum! LOL
 
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Old 12-18-03, 07:31 PM
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Thanks for the info......Hope to build a huge collection of photographs for my picture album.


Some customers like to see what the hands of the trade do for others.
 
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Old 12-18-03, 08:29 PM
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... I ended up buying a Olympus 2.0 megapixel with 64 mb card and a 40 dollar charger with batteries and $10 case.
This sounds like my setup. I love mine (Olympus D-380 w/ 8M card - I purchased a 64M card). Serves my purpose well. I don't keep up with my website, but as others can attest my website is full of pictures taken so the wonderful people here at DIY can help me.

It can take some awesome pictures, when I pay attention to what I'm doing LOL. It has a lot of features and I forget to change from one thing to another.

You will eat up batteries using the movie feature. Only 15 seconds, but that's fine. Enough to take a few moments of a grandbaby doing something cute (which usually last just about 15 seconds ) and sending it off to grandma in an email.

Like I said, I truly enjoy mine and it a huge step up from the $39 camera I purchased first.

Kay
 
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Old 12-18-03, 08:37 PM
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I will be darn.....I did the exact same thing, a $39 dollar Argus digital camera.


Cheap and was in a blister pack on a J-hook at office depot. Thought it would be worth at least something in use....and......it has done okay for its price other than eating up batteries and grainly pictures.


The camera I bought is a Olympus D-390, and if I ever get a chance I am going to read instructions and play around with it this weekend so I know how to use it.



Anything is an upgrade from what I had.
 
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Old 12-18-03, 08:57 PM
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I can't even find the cheap one to see what kind it is. That is the one I let the kids take to school when they want pics of their friends. I don't think I'd cry too hard if it was broken or stolen. Not to mention that I have only seen one or two pictures they've taken that were worth having prints made.

I love the fact that I can go through my memory card and either make a note of or delete the pictures on the card that I don't want pictures made from. No more having to have a whole roll of film developed at a time just to get a picture or two off there.

I am truly enjoying my camera for what I use it for - which reminds me that I have some pics stored someone (probably on my site) that I need to get the guys in gardening to help me identify a really neat plant I saw while at the coast. Was wondering if it would grow here in the midsouth, and of course, what it was called LOL.

Happy picture taking!

Kay
 
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Old 12-18-03, 09:23 PM
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Smile The Canon Power Shot G5

Hi all

I had a chance to hold a Canon G5 today & it felt good.

The Conversion Lens Adapter LA-DC58B is this for using lenses from SLR type cameras? I saw both Pics on PC & after being printed & all I can say is WOW!

The weight, fit & feel made me want to look up more & I found the adapter but no real eplaination as to how it worked. I also found a 50mm lens converter for close ups. It may work like the little lens for the 35mm Contessa that let's you take pictures as close as 1 foot instead of 2 feet.

This is a nice camera & does not look like it came from Maxwells Smarts shoe. The trigger is like a feather light button. I know I will want pleanty of RAM but. I will find it again it could be an IPod device. A device using batterys or a cig lighter in car, that let's you offload your Pics you took & get back to shooting. At $100.00 it held thousands of Pics & when you get home you just load them from this holding tank, into your PC.

Is there a bad to transfering the Pics to this, from RAM & then to PC? Would it be better to just invest in more RAM instead?
 
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Old 12-19-03, 08:38 AM
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The ram in my camera isn't much. Not sure of the figures but I can take 5 low quality pictures without having a memory card installed.

It came with a SmartMedia 8M, but I purchased the 64M card.

These cards can start getting expensive. They are similar to a disk drive floppy, but a lot more stable. You dont' have to remove the pictures from the card to view them on the computer. You only copy them to the computer so they remain on the memory card - or stick if that is the type your camera will use. You can also just view them directly from the camera with the card installed.

My camera doesn't have the docking station, only a usb connection to download and/or view the pictures on the so I purchased a card reader. I love it since I can use the card reader with either computer.

To preserve your pictures marturo, you can take them and copy from the memory stick and burn them onto a cd. Most photo shops, which you won't need since you are beginning to do your own pictures - can also make printed pictures for you from a picture disk - as well as from your memory card. Once you've made you cd(s) then you can go ahead and clear the pictures out of the camera memory card, and take a ziilion more!

I cannot stress to anyone just how much time money I save having a digital camera. However, I still haven't tried printing my own pictures out yet.

Oh, those wanting to purchase a digital might want to check on the prices of the memory that the cameras you are looking at cost. I believe there are 3 different kinds. May be more but I'm aware of 3.

Kay
 
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