Best low light point and shoot?

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Bob Martin, Jan 12, 2004.

  1. Bob Martin

    Bob Martin Guest

    I am going overseas and need to photograph in museums where a flash is
    often not permitted.

    In the sub $300 range, which 35mm point and shoot camera presently on
    the mareket comes with the fastest lens.

    I am not concerned with zoom capabilities. These can be absent or of
    minimal range. Due to size and weight considerations, a new "plastic"
    camera is preferred to older models.

    Bob Martin
    Bob Martin, Jan 12, 2004
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  2. Bob Martin

    Mike Guest

    Ruling out the cheap, older rangefinders (with fixed f1.7 lenses), your
    best bet is probably the Olympus Stylus Epic for $90. It has a fixed f2.8
    lens. Shoot with 800 or 1600 speed film, you should be fine.
    Mike, Jan 12, 2004
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  3. Bob Martin

    Paul Rubin Guest

    Small cameras, even non-zooms, tend to have slowish wideangle lenses.
    There are a number of nice small P/S with 35/2.8's including the
    Olympus Stylus Epic, Yashica T4, etc.

    If you don't mind some extra weight, you can get an old rangefinder or
    SLR camera with a much faster lens. Something like an Olympus OM-G
    with a 50/1.4 lens is a reasonably lightweight SLR and you can
    probably find that combo for $150 or less. A Canonet QL17 has a
    40/1.7 and they are dirt cheap, though its quality is not as good as
    it's cracked up to be.
    Paul Rubin, Jan 12, 2004
  4. I agree about the Olympus Stylus Epic. About $90 US and a steal for the

    If you need faster, you'll have to go SLR or get a used camera. The Canon
    ML35AF (or Autoboy Super in Asia) is about $20-40 and has a 40mm f/1.9 lens.
    I have one and it's quite good, but it is a lot larger than the Stylus Epic.

    Another option would be a rangefinder. You could get a Zorki-4 and 50mm f/2
    Jupiter-8 lens (Soviet) for about $50 US. This would be manual focus and
    have no meter, however.

    Jim MacKenzie, Jan 12, 2004
  5. Bob Martin

    Bandicoot Guest

    An additional issue to consider inmuseums is focusing. If you want to
    photograph things behind glass, and focus on them rather than on the glass,
    active AF won't do. So you either need passive AF, manual focus, or active
    AF that can be overriden.

    Just a thought.

    Bandicoot, Jan 13, 2004
  6. They almost all have built-in flash units....This would probably keep you
    out of the museum.......
    William Graham, Jan 13, 2004
  7. Bob Martin

    Matt Clara Guest

    Mine seems durable, and the quality of the lens is without question.
    Matt Clara, Jan 13, 2004
  8. Bob Martin

    DBB Guest

    The Epic flash can be turned off ... and I suspect the others all can
    have their flash disabled also.
    DBB, Jan 13, 2004
  9. Bob Martin

    Simon Lee Guest

    Bandicoot choreographed a chorus line of high-kicking electrons to spell
    For the original poster: Any reason not to get an SLR? Bodies
    aren't that expensive, and with a 50mm f/1.8 will have little trouble in
    museum lighting--plus have MF like Bandicoot points out.
    The Stylus Epic is a nice camera anyway though :)
    Simon Lee, Jan 13, 2004
  10. Bob Martin

    Mark M Guest

    If you insist on a simple point&shoot, and are willing to give up nearly all
    control of the camera, I agree that the Olympus Stylus Epic 35mm 2.8 unit
    at -$90 is a steal...(I own and appreciate mine, BTW, but would certainly
    prefer a full SLR if at all possible).

    --Here's what I think is a GREAT alternative, and one which is very close to
    the same size as many point&shoot cameras (and a camera which can be used
    with the automation of a P&S, OR...the control of a full SLR). It also will
    keep you UNDER your $300 number, and yet maintain the ability to build a
    system around in the future is you so choose.

    Here ya go:
    New Canon Rebel Ti SLR Body only: $209
    Click here for B&H page:
    New Canon 50mm fixed f1.8 lens: $69.95
    Hmmm... I see here that B&H is out of this FABULOUS bargain of a tack sharp
    Here's another equally reputable dealer:
    Oops! -Seems they are also out of stock...

    Still... This is a great combo that will put you MILES ahead of literally
    ANY point and shoot.
    Mark M, Jan 13, 2004
  11. Bob Martin

    Duncan Ross Guest

    From: Bob Martin
    You might like to consider a Minox 35. Smallest and lightest 35mm of the lot,
    no flash on the body, f2.8 lens and bottomless shutter speed range.

    Happy hunting!
    Duncan Ross, Jan 13, 2004
  12. Bob Martin

    Gregg Guest

    If you want superb quality in a P&S, and low light capability, and willing
    to spend about $500, go for a Konica Silver w/ fixed f/2.0 lens. Or you can
    easily find truckloads of nice used SLRs with a very fast 50 mm f/1.8
    (possibly even an f/1.4) lens on it for $300 or less.

    Then again, a factory refurbed compact Canon G2 digicam with fast f/2 - f2.5
    34-102 mm zoom, and ISO sensitivity up to ISO 400 (actually closer to 800)
    is available for around $300 - $350. Probably the best bet for your purposes
    unless you are really stuck on film.
    Gregg, Jan 13, 2004
  13. I agree. And for another $700 he can get the digital version.
    The future you wrote about.
    Povl H. Pedersen, Jan 13, 2004
  14. Bob Martin

    blackgold Guest

    Beware of SLRs though. Some of them have shutter noise that can wake up the
    dead in a museum, alert security guards, turn heads, etc.
    blackgold, Jan 14, 2004
  15. Bob Martin

    Duncan Ross Guest

    From: "blackgold"
    ....and also limit the slow shutter speeds available in low light. I've had good
    handheld shots from a leaf-shutter camera at 1/8th but I haven't really had
    much luck with an SLR below 1/50th.
    Duncan Ross, Jan 14, 2004
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