Digital Camera advice needed

Discussion in 'UK Photography' started by JCP, Oct 12, 2004.

  1. JCP

    JCP Guest

    Hello all
    I'm hoping to venture into the realms of digital photography soon,
    having been prodded into it by the recent destruction of my holiday
    snaps at Boots. I'm hoping someone can point me in the right direction
    on this (or at least at a website explaining the ins and outs of it all).

    I have absolutely no idea as to what is good/bad etc. but a reasonable
    idea (I think) as to what I want from a camera.

    I'm very much a holiday/party type snapper.
    Sometimes I'll get a photo that turns out well enough to earn a spot on
    the wall - generally A4 type size, though occasionally A3. I also take
    "action" type shots of baseball and football games, so I'd want
    something that could handle that - they come out quite well on my
    current camera (Pentax Espio 160).

    I'd also be looking to spend a max of about £350.

    So - can anyone point me at a good place to start to find out about this
    stuff, or recommend particular cameras to look at?

    Many thanks
    JCP, Oct 12, 2004
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  2. Take a look at for easy access to details of a wide
    range of cameras. Look at the Fujifilm S5100 and the Sony DSC-T1 for quite
    different styles of camera and check prices with
    None of that means that those quoted are recommended (nor not recommended!)
    but it might help you get plenty of information fairly quickly.
    John Cartmell, Oct 12, 2004
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  3. JCP

    Peter Guest

    The Casio Z40 is amazingly good for its small size. I have the one
    before, the Z4, which is also excellent. If you want to see some
    images drop me a line.

    Beware though - there appears to be a problem with Z40 quality control
    and some of them don't focus properly in the corners. So get the shop
    to take a pic, fully zoomed-out, of a bright outdoor scene, and then
    examine it on a PC screen (or print it out at least A4) and check for
    even focus all over.

    I looked at a number of other pocket cameras and this one was way the

    But, as with *all* small cameras, the flash is feeble and they produce
    poor quality images in poor light, e.g. indoors evenings.

    Peter, Oct 12, 2004
  4. JCP

    Peter Guest

    Peter, Oct 12, 2004
  5. JCP

    Mark Dunn Guest

    I'd put in a word for my Olympus C725. Only £150.
    Mark Dunn, Oct 12, 2004
  6. JCP

    TP Guest

    If you think losing your (film-based) holiday snaps at Boots was easy,
    just wait until you start grappling with memory cards, uploads to your
    PC etcetera ...

    There must be at least ten times as many ways to lose your digital
    images as there are to lose your film-based snaps, and they are all so
    much easier to accomplish - without any need of Boots' help!

    TP, Oct 12, 2004
  7. I haven't handles an Espio, isn't there a shutter delay while it works
    out exposures? Is that a problem with the sports pictures?

    If so read the reviews carefully regarding shutter delays - it's the
    major problem (IME) with digicams, especially the more automatic ones.
    I've just bought my second, a Panasonic FZ3, which is brill in terms of
    short delay. But has other probs, like no hot shoe for flash. I'd also
    look at the latest Fuji S5000 (or is it 5500 now?) But both could be too
    bulky for you.
    Agree entirely.

    Remember that your budget will have to cover an extra battery (those
    that use rechargeable AAs are good there), and a much bigger memory card
    than comes with the camera. That will mean the camera should cost around

    [The reply-to address is valid for 30 days from this posting]
    Michael J Davis
    Some newsgroup contributors appear to have confused
    the meaning of "discussion" with "digression".
    Michael J Davis, Oct 12, 2004
  8. JCP

    JCP Guest

    I can imagine!
    But at least then I'd only have myself to blame.

    I'll probably hang onto my Pentax, but the idea is that the digital one
    would become the main camera.

    Thanks to everyone for the advice so far - looks like I've got plenty of
    reading up to do.

    JCP, Oct 13, 2004
  9. JCP

    howard Guest

    Even if your memory card 'crashed' without warning ??
    howard, Oct 13, 2004
  10. JCP

    Andy Champ Guest

    I take an old laptop on holiday, and back up to it daily. The laptop
    was free - none of the salesmen wanted a P166 any more - but that way
    I'm very unlikely to lose much.

    If I was really paranoid, I'd back up the laptop too... but it doesn't
    have a writer, and I only get 2 piccies on a floppy!

    At home, everything gets copied to CD ASAP.

    Andy Champ, Oct 13, 2004
  11. JCP

    TQ Guest

    I was in pretty much the same boat as you are now, this time
    last year and I spent ages rumaging about for info etc. There
    is a lot available and all within your budget.

    I chose a Kodak DX 6490 bought from Amazon and am well pleased
    with my choice. It's ideal for the happy snapper and you can
    be more adventurous.


    1] Optical Zoom [x10] is excellent.
    2] Low light indoors without flash is pretty good and outdoors
    is excellent.
    3] Larger than average LCD rear screen makes it easy to use.
    4] Bty Life is damn good.
    5] You'll get very good A3/A4 prints.
    6] Easy to use.


    1] Maybe a bit bulky for you.
    2] There's a knack to holding the lens cap clear when the lens
    powers out.
    3] It is too easy to finger the rear screen because of its size.
    4] If you use 98SE there are some issues which you need to be
    aware of.

    But overall I got good value for money.
    Some example are here [ignore the tatty attempt at a web site]
    TQ, Oct 14, 2004
  12. JCP

    TQ Guest

    I use a tatty old Lappy to download all images onto
    then pull em off onto my base machine when I get home
    so I can edit/burn a CD. But I have also taken the
    card into a 'Kiosk' and burnt a CD there as well but
    that was a one off.
    TQ, Oct 14, 2004
  13. Worth noting that the market has changed substantially over the last 6
    months and continues to change. Specs. improve, prices fall, specs. change,
    prices fall further. And prices differ substantially across retailers eg:

    Minolta A2:
    523 from Amazon (down from 550 a few weeks ago)
    540 from a local independent
    649 from Jessops who promise to price match - and then reduce the price to
    600 when confronted by the above (but they say they buy at 600 so can't
    reduce further)
    699 from Dixons.

    [prices from last Saturday]

    OK so Amazon don't have the same overheads but the independent has a shop
    in a town centre and has been in business for at least 28 years to my
    knowledge - and the price is for a new camera bought in this week (he sold
    out last week) and his guarantee is better than any of the others.

    But he still charged full price for the tele converter. ;-(
    John Cartmell, Oct 14, 2004
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