Jan 23, 2012 at 7:59 am #1284549
I think I need to replace my Kern River dunked Canon. Looking for a easy to operate PnS now. Good zoom, light, backpacking jigglingproof, I guess the pixels only have to be 6 for good quality. Under $400. Your source for good reviews, I checked last night, looking to pull the trigger soon on another camera.
DuaneJan 23, 2012 at 8:12 am #1828419
@gregfLocale: Canadian Rockies
Check out DPreview. For P&S they do group tests of most of the leading cameras. I would check out the waterproof tests, the Travel zoom tests and the super zoom tests
The superzoom review is a little datad as all of the cameras would have new models by now. I think the Travel zoom test is probably what you are looking for.Jan 23, 2012 at 8:14 am #1828420
Travis LeannaBPL Member
That's where I looked a lot when searching for my camera.
Over a year ago I went with one of the travel zooms. If I were to do it again, I'd opt for a smaller zoom but better sensor.Jan 23, 2012 at 10:25 am #1828469
Explain the sensor part too please, I can figure out a few things reading reviews. My 2.5 year old Canon had great digital zoom, not sure I need that much now. I was looking at a couple reviews last night and I'm not sure I want a wide angle camera, seems the photo gets distorted some. I'll check tonight the mentioned site.
DuaneJan 23, 2012 at 10:50 am #1828484
@b-g-2-2Locale: Silicon Valley
Duane, first of all you have to understand that "digital zoom" is crap. All that does is digitally crop the image to the center. Optical zoom is much more useful, and that is done by the lenses and structure of the camera.
Some cameras optically zoom from very wide to a little bit long. Others zoom from a little bit wide to very long. Those two types might have the same number for its zoom power, but you will get totally different results at the wide end and at the long end. To some extent, the broader the zoom range, the more useful a single camera/lens is. However, the broader the zoom range is, the more compromises must be made in the lens design. In other words, it isn't perfect.
The more megapixels that you have in the sensor, the more megapixels can be in the image. That just allows you to print to a larger size, like a poster. Very few people are printing large these days, so that much is kind of a non-issue. Having more megapixels allow you to crop to the center to get a long range photo of a small subject. Yes, that is about the same as digital zoom. So, some people get this done with heavier and more expensive optics. Others get it done by cropping to the center.
By getting a fairly modern camera with a fairly modern sensor design, you will probably get a sensor with cleaner "color noise." Older sensors tend to be a little rough around the edges with this. If you are not a pixel-peeper, then you may not see the difference.
–B.G.–Jan 23, 2012 at 11:29 am #1828508
Another thing to keep in mind is that (all else being equal) for a given number of megapixels, a physically smaller sensor will suffer from more digital noise. The corollary to this is that for a given sensor size, more megapixels means more noise. DPReview includes sensor size in their reviews and their comparison tables. Last time I checked, all the superzooms used very small sensors. 12x zoom may sound good, but unless you're limiting yourself to shooting in bright light and displaying on the web you may not be satisfied with the image quality.Jan 23, 2012 at 11:30 am #1828510
Travis LeannaBPL Member
What Bob and Will said.
My camera has a 14x optical zoom and some kind of digital zoom. The digital zoom is so crappy that I've turned off the feature so I'm not tempted to use it or accidentally zoom into digital range.
The 14x zoom has been nice a few times, but as you zoom you lose image stability unless you have a tripod. I'm not carrying one in the backcountry (some people are very happy to do so) so if I zoom in a lot, often I get a degradation of picture quality because I can't hold the camera still enough. It's also not the best in low light.
More often I've wanted a camera that can produce a nicer picture than one that can zoom in on a distant object. I realize that a lot of photography has to do with the user, but a good quality camera can't hurt.
I think the numbers behind zoom and MP are two areas where camera marketers get a lot of their sales from.Jan 23, 2012 at 2:25 pm #1828585
"I think the numbers behind zoom and MP are two areas where camera marketers get a lot of their sales from."
Yup. Just like "bombproof" sells packs and tents. So there's a lot of junk out there aimed at people who dabble. Unfortunately there aren't a lot of cottage industry folks making little cameras.
The good news is that things may be changing; there are some exciting products coming out in the mirrorless camera market. Not UL by any means but a lot lighter than and just as capable as a DSLR.Jan 23, 2012 at 2:42 pm #1828595
drowning in spamMember
Superzoom is fine, just make sure you're satisfied with how bright it is at the short end. A 3X zoom is never going to catch wildlife pictures on the other side of a canyon. It just doesn't put enough pixels on the target like a longer zoom can. You might have to find a way to stabilize your camera, but at least it's possible.Jan 23, 2012 at 6:09 pm #1828696
I have the Canon SX10. Zoom, I have the better one, I was thinking the digital zoom was the better one. Its been almost three years since I did my research for a camera for my Alaska trip back in 2009. I'll do some reading tonight.
DuaneJan 23, 2012 at 6:11 pm #1828697
"The 14x zoom has been nice a few times, but as you zoom you lose image stability unless you have a tripod."
Travis, you don't use trekking poles?Jan 23, 2012 at 6:16 pm #1828699
Duane, are you only looking for new? I've got a Canon Powershot A710IS (review here: http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/canona710is/) that I no longer use. Good shape. I'm happy to sell it for $200.Jan 23, 2012 at 8:36 pm #1828779
Rick MBPL Member
delJan 23, 2012 at 9:49 pm #1828814
Doug, let me ask the shop, Im headed there this week to ask about a S95, Elph 100, SX230HS. What is bad about the A710IS shutting the LCD down to recharge after a flash? I would rarely use a flash, just wondered about that.
Update, when to Gordon's and they somehow got my camera to work a little better. Not sure if exposure to temps in the 30's and lower cause it to act up some, still takes good pics. I'll test it some more. They also mentioned it may still have some moisture in it from my dunk in the river. I'll see what I can do to remove more moisture. Thank you for the help.
DuaneJan 25, 2012 at 9:02 am #1829445
@areichowLocale: Northern Minnesota
I've been in the market for a new camera for the last few months, wanting to replace my Canon SD1000 with something that allowed for a bit more manual control. Having had good luck with Canons, I initially constrained my search to Canon. The main option for that from Canon were the Canon SX220HS and SX230HS. I started looking elsewhere after reading about the SX2x0HS's poor battery life.
I ended up deciding on a Nikon P300, which is a nice little compact with manual control. Only 4.3x zoom, but I rarely used the 3x zoom on old Canon and would rather have a bright lens than a zoom I don't really use and can't use effectively without a tripod. Nice 24mm f/1.8 wide angle lens. Just received it last week, and I'm quite happy so far.
The cameras I encountered in my search worth checking out are:
– Canon SX220HS (w/o GPS)
– Canon SX230HS (w/ GPS)
– Nikon S8200
– Sony DSC-HX7V
– Sony DSC-HX9V
– Panasonic ZS8
– Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX5
– Nikon P300
– Canon S95
– Samsung TL350
– Samsung TL500
All the above are under $400 have high average of reviews on Amazon (4-4.5 stars). I ended up with the Nikon P300 at $240, but if money was no object I'd probably have gone with the Canon S95 (~$350) or Panasonic LX5 (~$350).Jan 25, 2012 at 4:04 pm #1829662
@footeabLocale: Pacific Northwest
You are better off getting a 1 or 2 year old camera that was top of the line PnS at that time then a lower grade camera today.
Ebay/Craigslist. You will get twice the camera for half the same money spent.
Only thing that devalues faster than a camera is a wedding dress.
On dpreview search older reviews. Go to reviews and scroll down the list. Get reviews from starting 2 years ago.
Save yourself a bunch of money and the images will still be the same.
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