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hikergrl
05-29-2008, 10:06 AM
I would really like to purchase a new digital camera before my next backpacking trip but I have no idea which one to get. I'd like one that is lightweight, compact, and since I know nothing about camera settings, idiot proof. I currently have an Olympus but it's getting old and I really don't like the way the pictures are coming out anymore. Any suggestions? The cheaper the camera the better but I want some good pictures. Thanks

BlueDog
05-29-2008, 12:18 PM
As far as Point-and-Shoot, I'm looking for one myself, instead of lugging my dSLR around. I can't recommend a specific model, but I've been very happy with Canon for many, many years now.

mtruman
05-29-2008, 01:22 PM
I really like the Canon Powershot line. I currently have a Powershot A530 and it's what I've used for most of my hiking photos in the last couple of years. I have a Panasonic DMC-FZ50 that I use for everything else but I don't lug it around on many of the hikes. The A530 is a 5MP model which is plenty for the kind of outdoor scenery photography that is typical for hiking. I'm actually getting ready to buy a replacement so that my daughter can start using my A530. I've decided on the A570IS which is basically a 7MP version of the A530 with several other new features including optical image stabilization (which hopefully is useful since the zoom on the A530 often results in a bit of blur). Ritz Camera is currently selling this one for $149 on Amazon here (http://www.amazon.com/Canon-PowerShot-A570IS-Digital-Stabilized/dp/B000NK3H4S). One of the nice things about the Powershots vs. many of the other small point-and-shoot digitals is the form factor. It is not too small and has a really good grip that lets you easily grab it out of a case on your belt without worrying about dropping it - really important when hiking. In terms of image quality check out my hiking photo gallery (link in my signature below) - most are taken with the A530.

Patrad Fischroy
05-29-2008, 03:54 PM
For outdoor activities, you may want to check out the Pentax Optio W60. I have heard that it is priced about $300-$350 but it is waterproof to 13 feet and it says it will work in sub freezing temps.

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/W60/W60A.HTM

You can also look for the W30 with somewhat lower specs

mtruman
05-29-2008, 04:36 PM
For outdoor activities, you may want to check out the Pentax Optio W60. I have heard that it is priced about $300-$350 but it is waterproof to 13 feet and it says it will work in sub freezing temps.

http://www.imaging-resource.com/PRODS/W60/W60A.HTM

You can also look for the W30 with somewhat lower specs
I actually bought the W30 prior to my Canon because I wanted something waterproof (for kayaking, etc). The image quality was really bad and I returned it. Hopefully the W60 has improved this. My current all weather solution is a Fuji A500 with a waterproof case. I bought the combination through a couple of eBay retailers last spring for less than $150 and the picture quality (including under water is great). Not anywhere near as portable as the W30 or W60 which are pocketable. I generally carry it in my backpack as a backup on long hikes in case it rains and I still want to get some shots.

I did a review of this camera for geek.com which is here if you want to check it out: http://www.geek.com/hwswrev/conel/a500aqua/index.htm

Brad
05-29-2008, 06:20 PM
A feature to think about is a wide angle lens. My wife's small Canon has a wide angle lens built in. It is very good.

Charlie
05-29-2008, 08:27 PM
A feature to think about is a wide angle lens. My wife's small Canon has a wide angle lens built in. It is very good.


what # canon is it

h2oeco
05-29-2008, 11:20 PM
My small/backup camera is a Canon SD800IS (IS is for Image Stabilization - works pretty well) - this is part of their "digital elph" line. Very small, but very capable. Has a "real" viewfinder in addition to the LCD on the back - important in sunny/glarey conditions... Uses SD cards, pretty responsive for a non-SLR - not much delay. Uses proprietary rechargeable batteries, but they seem to hold up well. I've had it for a number of years now, and like it. It is in the 6-7 megapixel range, I believe. The newer models are even higher MP...

Ed

M_Six
05-29-2008, 11:54 PM
I like the Panasonic Lumix FZ18. (http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Panasonic/panasonic_dmcfz18.asp) It looks like a dSLR, but it's much smaller and lighter. You can get one at Amazon for around $300 (http://www.amazon.com/Panasonic-DMC-FZ18S-Digital-Optical-Stabilized/dp/B000UP6RXO/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1212119346&sr=8-2). The lens goes from 28mm to 504mm (18x). It's very fast, has a really nice auto-setting feature, and basically will not take a bad shot. I'm no pro (not by a long shot), but I've been pretty happy with the images I've taken. (http://www.mjpics.com/gallery/)

Read some reviews. It usually comes out on top when compared with similar cameras.

Steve M
05-30-2008, 01:49 AM
I had the Canon Powershot A60 and was happy with it for almost a year, then the zoom in/out lever got lose so I sent it out to be fixed while under warranty. It was still lose when I gor it back. Six months after that the image sensor bit the dust so I became leary about buying another canon point and shoot. Instead I bought the Nikon d80 DSLR with two lenses.

Brad
05-30-2008, 05:21 AM
what # canon is it
I was afraid someone would ask that. I will check the records.

It is a Canon Powershot SD800IS - Image Stabilization, wide angle lens, and very small. View finder is the LCD panel on back but it is easily seen even in bright light.

Rich
05-30-2008, 08:45 AM
I'm a firm believer in Sony and picked up the very small, lightweight DSC-S750 Cybershot for under $200. The photo quality is awesome and it fits nicely in a small pouch that's on my sternum strap. The zoom isn't wonderful but as far as I'm concerned, if you need a big clear zoomed shot then you need a nice big lens for that anyway.

Charlie
05-30-2008, 07:40 PM
thanks i will take a look at them

spyboy
05-31-2008, 02:06 PM
The Canon G9's are great, they have all of the functionality of a DSLR but without the ability to put lenses on it (think a Rebel XT without the big lenses)

I use an Olympus Stylus 770SW, it's a metal case, about the size of a deck of cards (fits in a jeans pocket) and has some boastful claims:

1) waterproof to 33 feet (I use it kayaking and have submerged it about 4 feet)
2) shockproof (to a 3 foot fall)
3) crushproof to 220lbs
4) freeze proof (to 14F)

yes, it sounds "idiotproof" but for sea kayaking, I wanted something to keep clipped to the deck or my life jacket so I could take pictures at a moments notice.

I've also used it for snowboarding, since it's nice and small to fit into a jacket pocket.

It can shoot video but only at 15FPS so it's not great (maybe the newer models can do 30fps).

I think I paid $330 last summer for mine, but at the time, was looking at a Sony point & shoot and a waterproof case, then realized I could just get one that had all of that protection without a big plastic case.

My "real" camera is a Canon 40D, but that's not as easy to lug around :)

Kirk

Caffeine Addict
06-16-2008, 04:47 PM
i myself am partial to my nikon coolpix 5600 not sure if you can still get this model but you could check out there site and see what they have out now
http://www.nikon.com/about/news/2005/0216_04.htm