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Thread: Digi cam

  1. #1
    lazy student nvening's Avatar
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    Digi cam

    I need a new digital camera, to go with my psp and my new pc, obviously.
    I really dont know whats around at the mo. Im planing on spending around £200-250 i think. And i like a brand name. Also can someone explain the TRUTH about this megapixel BS (yes i no its howmany pixels the pics made up of)

    Thanks
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  2. #2
    21st century digital boy noah's Avatar
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    have a look in the GD forum, there's a current thread there and a few other old ones.

    also have a look at steves digicams and dpreview

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    Almost in control. autopilot's Avatar
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    I can't keep up with digital camera's anymore. That said, if you can stretch that far, the Canon EOS 300D can be picked up of less than £400 now if you want a serious (SLR) camera.

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    Goron goron Kumagoro's Avatar
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    I just got a Fujifilm F10 which isnt strictly out here yet its in the same league as the
    canon sd500/digital 700. The advantages over that canon were long battery life, It
    has a 1950 mA battery so you can take 500 pics with the screen on. Iso 800 and 1600 which do work well especially because it has a massive AF light. Super fast zoom like you wouldnt believe and when fully zoomed in it doesnt blur like that canon does.

    only draw back is Xd card but you can pick up the new 1 GB one for near £50 online in the uk. you can get both at dabs.com for about £250

    on ebay i have seen this

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...517263418&rd=1

    but that seems too cheap so will probably go up.

    If you are after an ultra compact theres the sony dsc T7 high Mpixel for such a thin one but it didnt feel nice in the hand. I prefered the casio EXILIM CARD EX-S100 but its only 3 Mpixel but for me thats more than enough at that size.


    A couple that have come out in the last few days.

    Theres also the panasonic FX7 update FX8 (you might need to bablefish it.)
    http://yodobashi.com/enjoy/more/i/ca.../38377120.html

    Also this one which is similar to the F10 but with internal zoom and 800 iso only.
    comes in 4 colours silver black blue and red
    http://yodobashi.com/enjoy/more/i/ca.../37875887.html
    unfortunalty i left just before they came out so i dont know what they are like.

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    I am currently using, and can highly recommend, the Fuji Finepix F440 (4.1 mp). It is tiny, robust, has 3.4x optical zoom, produces fantastic pictures and is within your price range - around £200, though you can find it cheaper.
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    I have a Pentax Optio S5i

    really great camera, small, light and easy to use

    its 5.1 Megapixels and the pictures come out really good quality,

    Also the bundled editing software is pretty good

    Barney

  7. #7
    Goron goron Kumagoro's Avatar
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  8. #8
    Taz
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    Senior Member Taz's Avatar
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    Some general advice (from a very amateur photographer):

    - Firstly, find out what the true pixel width and height of the CCD are. Many cheaper cameras have a tiny CCD (say 640x480) and the image is blown up using dithering to a much higher resolution. This is truly the biggest con in the digital camera market. Ensure the stated resolution of the camera is the actual CCD size.

    - Go for a camera with good optics. A good test of the optics is to take a picture with some vertical buildings/structures at the left and right edges. All lenses will curve these inwards but the better cameras will leave these almost straight.

    - Continuing with the optics, ignore the digital zoom figures. You can achieve a better result using Paintshop Pro! Always try to get a camera with a good optical zoom (eg. 3x upwards). Very large zoom options (eg 100x zoom) are totally useless as you would have to use a tripod and even then the picture will be useless. It is always preferable to avoid using a zoom and just get closer to the subject instead.

    - Ignore the low-light claimed specification. Most sub-£1000 cameras will use an assistance light to meet the claimed low-light figures. A good quality camera will have a much more sensitive CCD allowing you to take pictures in low light without a flash and with a short an exposure as possible.

    - Try to get a camera with manual control or, at the very least, exposure modes like daylight, fluorescent, nighttime, etc. It's amazing how much better pictures turn out if the correct exposure settings are used for the ambient lighting conditions.

    - Most sub-£500 cameras will produce very vivid pictures (i.e. bright colours) as most people deem a bright, colour-rich picture to be better. The best cameras have a neutral colour, contrast and brightness balance.

    - Check the battery type/life of the camera. It's no use putting in a 1GB SD card to enable 1000 pictures to be taken if the standard battery will only take 20 pictures before it needs recharging/replacing. Some cameras will use AA (or similar) batteries. Others will use lithium ion rechargeable batteries. If you've got rechargeable batteries then you'll need to carry your charger and/or a spare battery with you.

    - Check the default ISO level of the camera in 'Auto' mode. A decent camera will default to ISO 100-200 in reasonable light conditions. The lower quality cameras will default to, say ISO 400. This enables a shorter exposure at the cost of much higher 'noise' in the resulting JPG image. You really want the lowest ISO number for normal 'Auto' mode.

    - Look at the bottom of the camera and see if there's a threaded hole for a tripod. It could be useful one day!

    - Check the metering modes of the camera (most cameras have TTL metering in which a light is emitted prior to the shot and the reflected light is measured in one or more zones). This is how the camera works out what the lighting conditions are for the shot you are about to take. A low-end camera will just use the area in the centre of the composed shot to take a meter reading for the exposure settings. A higher-end camera will analyse the composed shot and work out the major areas of the picture and adjust the metering based on all of those areas. The more the better.

    - Check for a decent macro mode. The nearer you can get to a close up shot the better as you will have far more detail in the resulting JPG.

    - Ensure that the camera uses USB 2.0 to connect to your PC (assuming your PC supports USB 2.0!). With the larger megapixels around these days, it can take ages to get your pictures onto your PC.

    - Try to avoid using lower resolution/lower quality settings on the camera. It's generally always best to take a picture at the highest quality setting and then reduce the quality on your PC. If you start off with a lower quality picture on your camera then you have fewer options available to you in the future.

    - Most of the viewfinders on digital cameras (in the sub-£500 category) do not accurately show the exact picture that will be taken as they are usually offset to the left of right of the lens. This is not a problem nowadays as most digital cameras have a panel display to show the composed picture. The quality of the panel displays varies enormously and many panel displays are not very good when taking pictures on a sunny day.

    - Check for a battery strength meter. Many makes of digitial camera only display a battery warning when you have virtually no battery power left! The better cameras will have a proper battery meter.

    - See if you can delete pictures on the camera. Many cameras will show you one-six-nine tiled pictures that you can save or delete in playback mode. This can be useful if you're out and about and don't have access to your PC and you are running out of memory on the camera.

    - Unless you really need it, video and sound recording modes are a bit of a gimmick on digital cameras. Much better to use a proper camcorder for those.

    Hope that helps!

  9. #9
    lazy student nvening's Avatar
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    wow thanks taz!
    Im liking the look at that f10, any others i should consider?
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