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Camera Buying Decisions
Old 06-08-2009, 08:51 AM   #1
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Camera Buying Decisions

This thread is a spinoff from HELP! Shopping Disease thread.

It's for those of us who consider upgrading their cameras.

I'm really into photography, but wonder whether my pictures would be significantly better with a better camera. Also, if I had a larger camera, would I had it with me as often?

Finally, I'm still not convinced that an SLR makes sense with a digital camera, since, if you're looking at the electronic image in the viewfinder or on a screen, you shouldn't need all the extra primitive mirror-flipping hardware. The only slight problem may be a slight latency.
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Old 06-08-2009, 08:59 AM   #2
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The way I have always understood it....the larger the sensor, the better the image. Combine that with a GOOD quality lens ($$$$$) and it is hard to take bad pictures. I have downsized over the years and only have a Canon G7 right now.....still a little too heavy to use since I don't like carrying it with me in my pocket/bike. Tempted to go back to the SLR range, but since I am buying a new electric solid body mandolin (which I can barely justify to my wife)....no way I wouldn't feel extremely guilty buying a new expensive camera.
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Old 06-08-2009, 09:37 AM   #3
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I have been a camera guy at different times in my life, but haven't been shooting actively since the kids got out of high school sport. We have a Canon point and shoot but we have a new granddaughter due soon, and decided to upgrade my camera.

I have a Canon Elan IIe (film) with lenses/flash, etc so I wanted to stick with Canon. After some research I ordered a Rebel XSi (Body only) for about $580. I looked at the just released T1i but the $900 price (which includes a lense I don't want) seemed like too much of a premium. I'm sure it will come down in time, but with the new grandbaby due soon... I can't wait!!! The XSi is about 12 MP, vs 15MP for the T1I, though the T1i can shoot some movies. Also the T1i has an ISO capability of 3200 vs 1600 on the XSi. Those are the major differences.

As far as better pics, the point and shoots do a nice job, and as you mentioned Al, size does matter in that the P&S are compact and easier to have with you.

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Old 06-08-2009, 10:23 AM   #4
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.... Also, if I had a larger camera, would I had it with me as often?

....
My wouldn't. The Canon A560 is the first camera I've carried virtually everywhere.

If ever a thread needed pictures....

I wouldn't have gotten this bug shot the other day with my big camera which is living in a drawer. BTW, it's a very old 35mm Yashica.

[edit: yes, I do consider upgrading but staying within the very small category, haven't researched it yet.]

I wonder which is more important: the quality of the camera or how it is processed in the darkroom or by computer manipulation.
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Old 06-08-2009, 10:42 AM   #5
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Joe, the Cannon A560 series is highly rated and very versatile, especially considering the price (~$120). I have an older A510 I've had for 3+ years and I really like it.
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Old 06-08-2009, 10:52 AM   #6
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Joe, the Cannon A560 series is highly rated and very versatile, especially considering the price (~$120). I have an older A510 I've had for 3+ years and I really like it.
Thanks, I hate to spend time researching these things. Yeah, that's about what I paid for it (and it included all the "film" I will ever need ). Added a battery recharger and expensive laptop, and I'm all set.

I might consider upgrading to something that holds a charge longer but for now I'm just training myself to carry extra batteries. btw, when it indicates low battery charge or says "change battery," I just fiddle with the batteries or reverse the two of them and it's good for a lot more pictures.
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Old 06-08-2009, 11:03 AM   #7
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Canon seems to be popular. My son does freelance photography and carries his cameras to some pretty remote places. This is his current equipment.
Canon 50D DSLR body
Canon 40D DSLR body
Canon 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L lens
Canon 17-55mm f/2.8 lens
Canon 10-22mm f/3.5-4.5 lens
Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-3.5 lens

He also uses a smaller Canon SD1000 for aerial shots and movies from an RC helicopter.
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Old 06-08-2009, 11:14 AM   #8
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Got a Canon SD1100 IS digital a few months ago. It has more features than I have figured out so far. Before that my digital camera was a five dollar special from goodwill.

Have several Pentax and a Yashicas taking up space someplace in the house.

I like the digital, immediate satisfaction in looking at the picture, if no good delete and retake.

There was a thread a while back, i believe started by Martha on which digital camera to g get. I seem to recall several folks on this forum have Canons.
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Old 06-08-2009, 11:26 AM   #9
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Got a Canon SD1100 IS digital a few months ago. It has more features than I have figured out so far. Before that my digital camera was a five dollar special from goodwill.

Have several Pentax and a Yashicas taking up space someplace in the house.

I like the digital, immediate satisfaction in looking at the picture, if no good delete and retake.

There was a thread a while back, i believe started by Martha on which digital camera to g get. I seem to recall several folks on this forum have Canons.
I am considering buying either the Canon SD1100 IS (or its successor the 1200 IS). How do you like yours? I am looking for something small and light, and I am wondering how you like the picture quality. Other option (with very good reviews from professionals) is the the SD990 IS, but it's slightly larger and more expensive.
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Old 06-08-2009, 11:26 AM   #10
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Al,
I carry a Canon SD800is in the car - battery life is amazing, it sits for weeks at a time between uses and gives hundreds of shots per charge. Really like the compact size as it makes me more likely to have it when i want it. Happy with detail and color resolution. Only down side is that it has a tendency to render straight lines at the edge of shots as curves. Not a huge irritant, but a definite small camera bugaboo. Note curb in this shot:
">
The sidewalk actually IS curved!
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:16 PM   #11
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I might consider upgrading to something that holds a charge longer
I find that the eneloop batteries are significantly better than any of my other NiMH rechargeables in my Canon A560. I'd say they last at least twice as long.

I'm tempted by Craigslist ads like this one:

http://humboldt.craigslist.org/pho/1210718838.html
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:27 PM   #12
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On our recent trip to Utah we took along a Canon A1000. For the most part it took good pictures. It has only two AA batteries, and if you used flash it seemed to go through the fairly fast. The other thing was the zoom. I had a Canon S2 IS with a 10x optical zoom. It went out a weak before the trip. I have been looking at the ultra zoom cameras. My requirements are 20x or more zoom, AA batteries, stabilized, sd card. Fuji has on that is close and under $200. However, now that the trip is over, I am willing to wait.
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:53 PM   #13
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My wouldn't. The Canon A560 is the first camera I've carried virtually everywhere.
I know someone with this camera and it's a great camera especially for the price. IMO, Canon cameras tend to make people's skin look better than other brands. Skin tends too look less shiny/oily with a bit more complexion.

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I wonder which is more important: the quality of the camera or how it is processed in the darkroom or by computer manipulation.
Camera vs post-processing technique probably depends on the circumstance. What's more important IMO, is good composition. It's what separates professionals from people like me (along with some other factors)
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Old 06-08-2009, 01:35 PM   #14
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I wonder which is more important: the quality of the camera or how it is processed in the darkroom or by computer manipulation.
I almost always run Paintshop Pro's Photo Fix on my A560's photos, and sometimes the "sharpen."

Here's an example (the Polish woman in the campsite next to us who was totally unperturbed by the grazing buffalo):

Straight from the camera

After photofix

After sharpen

Open these in three separate firefox tabs and jump between them to see the difference.
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Old 06-08-2009, 01:41 PM   #15
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I find that the eneloop batteries are significantly better than any of my other NiMH rechargeables in my Canon A560. I'd say they last at least twice as long.

....
Thanks, I put that on my wish list at Amazon.
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Old 06-08-2009, 01:48 PM   #16
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Straight from the camera

After photofix

After sharpen

Open these in three separate firefox tabs and jump between them to see the difference.
Al, I could see no difference whatsoever between the photfix and sharpened versions. You sure you didn't duplicate the two?
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Old 06-08-2009, 01:55 PM   #17
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Al, I could see no difference whatsoever between the photfix and sharpened versions. You sure you didn't duplicate the two?
You didn't see the one of the bison charging the woman('s credit card)? And this one photo shopped with the bison?
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Old 06-08-2009, 02:10 PM   #18
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Al, I could see no difference whatsoever between the photfix and sharpened versions. You sure you didn't duplicate the two?
The second looks slightly sharper if you look at some of the smaller objects (like the hair on the buffalo's head). The size of the pictures was probably decreased to fit on the web but I bet there's a more noticeable difference in the full size originals.

Al, you always have some really cool pictures. It looks like Photo Fix adjusted the exposure and maybe increased the contrast a bit?
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Old 06-08-2009, 03:04 PM   #19
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How do you like yours? I am looking for something small and light, and I am wondering how you like the picture quality.
I really like it. It is small enough to stick in most any pocket. Simple enough for me. Seems to do well with its automatic features. DW just happened to bring in a flower, so some pics attached.

Edit Add: These pics are as uploaded from the camera, no massaging/messing with to imporve or modify in any way.
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Old 06-08-2009, 03:13 PM   #20
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I have a Nikon CoolPix for a snapshot camera, and a Canon Digital Rebel for the flexibility of fancy exposures and additional lense capability.

I prefer the Canon, but it IS more of a PITA to carry...
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