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Need new digital camera. I'm completely lost!

(29 Posts)
beatie Sat 13-Aug-05 14:49:10

There's too much choice! We have about £200 to spend on a camera and the only specifications are that we want more than a 3X optical zoom and want the least amount of shutter lag as possible. Other than that - we have no preferences.

Our 'old' camera is quite outdated at just 2 years old! I have no idea where to start looking as so many manufacturers are making and updating digital cameras. The Internet is full of them.

Can anyone help with a recommendation if you've bought a new one recently? Thanks

Whizzz Sat 13-Aug-05 14:53:26

Depends if you want a little point & click type or a more 'arty' automatic with the option of using it manually.

I've just got a Fuji FinePix S5500 - which looks like a SLR camera but isn't! Its great - cost about £170. You can just point & click or you can manually mess about with it to be more arty (if you know roughly what you're doing)

I personally don't like the very small cameras as I find it hard to hold them steady enough. Mine is a bit chunky but at least it feels like a 'proper' camera

Niddlynono Sat 13-Aug-05 14:53:42

The Casio Exilim series is very good. I've got the Z750 which costs a bit more but it's a fantastic camera, great functions and takes great pictures. It was recommended to me by a photographer friend and I'm so glad i got one.

Look here for the whole range

Roobie Sat 13-Aug-05 15:42:19

After much research we've just got a Fuji Finepix E550 - after shopping around it came in at about £210 on the internet. We chose it because of the reviews - short shutter lag, image quality etc. It has 6megapixels which is apparently quite a lot for a compact. It's very simple to use with fully automated settings but also has a manual override for those budding photographers to play around with.

I would definitely recommend it - my dh is a bit of a David Bailey wannabe and he raves about it - it is even better than our £1,500 digital SLR that we bought last year.

ScrewballMuppet Sat 13-Aug-05 15:53:43

Hi, Curry's have some good deals. I got the kodak that was on similar offer as the fuji currently under offer.
What you need to remember is that its not just the camera you may need to purchase. Your likely to need a memory card although not an absolute and as a definate rechargable batteries and charger.
Digital cameras eat normal batteries by the case load. I was lucky if I got to take 10 pics before the batteries were dead. I was advised by many a friend and retailer to get rechargable batteries and charger that are suitable for digital cameras...have been ideal since.
Digital cameras only amount of space in the memory for pictures which means your constantly having to delete photos before downloading them because the memory is full and you can't bare to miss that unforgetable moment. Hence a memory card is a good idea. You can get memory cards with different capacities to hold pictures.

Hope that helps.

bran Sat 13-Aug-05 16:06:12

I have one of these , but in red. I'm not sure what shutter lag is, is the time between pressing the button and the picture being taken? If so there is lag on this camera, but I'm not sure if it's long or not because I haven't compared it to any others. It's long enough to notice but not long enough for anyone in the picture to have moved if that's any help.

They also have a 5 MP for less than £200 here .

Janh Sat 13-Aug-05 16:55:31

Blimey - the E550 is £159 at amazon - should I snap one up?

Janh Sat 13-Aug-05 16:58:22

Roobie, could your David Bailey advise on extras too? Memory cards and whatnot?

Janh Sat 13-Aug-05 17:46:17

Never mind, I've just bought one anyway and an Olympus memory card.

Roobie Sun 14-Aug-05 00:03:51

Yes you do have to buy an extra memory card as the one that comes with the camera only holds about 9 pictures. Fuji and Olympus have developed the Xd Picture card (I think it's called something like that not sure at the moment) - I recently bought a 512MB one for £30 odd of Ebay - will hold a ridiculous number of shots - something like 200 odd!
The camera comes with its own battery charger so the battery issue is not really a problem.

BadgerBadger Sun 14-Aug-05 09:03:26

I've got one of these and it's great! Point and shoot, but with full manual controls if you prefer them. It has got a massive zoom and a great macro, not necessary for day to day stuff, but good fun

I really added a link to this shop because their prices really are good and they were pleasant to do business with .

I think the E550 is really good value as well, I've not used one though!



This is a good site for reviews.

This one has a good forum for any questions, it has reviews too.

beatie Sun 14-Aug-05 19:14:06

I was all ready to purchase the Fuji E550 but then I looked at a comprehensive review of it on DPreview and see that it has quite a flimsy battery compartment. Whilst this usually would not have put me off , our last camera - a Nikon Coolpix - bit the dust after I dropped it from a low height onto carpet and the hinge of the battery compartment broke. It too was flimsy.

The Casio cameras look very smart. Are they nice to hold or too slick and slimline? Are they bulky enough to be free standing on their bottom?

Thanks so far for the recommendations and advice. I feel I am getting somewhere now.

Janh Sun 14-Aug-05 21:06:26

It's a nightmare, isn't it, beatie? This is why I hadn't bought one before - now I've done it I've been reading the reviews and going oo-er because some are negative!

However of the reviews I've seen of the E550 I'd say 75%+ are positive so I'm clinging to that notion. Nothing is perfect

Janh Sun 14-Aug-05 21:07:07

(I will just have to try not to drop it...)

PrincessPeaHead Sun 14-Aug-05 21:36:13

I have a casio exilim that I'm extremely happy with, having had a sony T-something or other (looked flashy, had v poor battery life) and a Pentax before.
has 5 megapixels, optical zoom, battery lasts seemingly forever (over 250 photos worth - can easily take it on holiday for a week without the charger) and it uses SD cards which slot straight into my laptop, pcs and tv (just mentioning that because the sony one used their own brand memorysticks which aren't so compatible with other things)

PrincessPeaHead Sun 14-Aug-05 21:39:10

oh and the shutter delay is non-existent - the pentax took FOREVER to take a picture which was hopeless with fast moving children.

the more I think about it the happier I am with it. It is all metal and solid feeling too, I hate plasticy cameras...

Janh Sun 14-Aug-05 21:41:40

Ooooooohhhhhhh noooooo, pph! Do you recognise any of these models ?

This is what happens when I make a decision. sigh.

beatie Sun 14-Aug-05 21:47:09

janh - I'm sure you're nowhere near as clumsy as me so your Fuji will be fine.

PrincessPeaHead Sun 14-Aug-05 21:48:36

just checked - mine is the ex-z55 which is shown there at £189 (I'm sure I paid more! But I've had it almost a year I think)

PrincessPeaHead Sun 14-Aug-05 21:53:48

just read a review where they said shutter speed fantastic, battery life phenomenal, but doesn't allow much manual adjustment of settings. I'd say that was fair but to be honest I use it to point and shoot and don't do more than switch from portrait mode to landscape mode (or if I'm feeling racy, night portrait mode). Oh and I used the "food" settings to take a picture of my breakfast waffles at the Mercer Hotel in New York because they were so beautiful and that came out fantastically well!!!!

Roobie Sun 14-Aug-05 22:40:26

I'm sure you won't be disappointed with your E550 Jan - like you say, there is no such thing as the absolute perfect product. It's a nightmare though isn't it trying to make purchasing decisions these days with all the info and reviews out there on the web - I spend hours trawling around looking for best buys for virtually everything I need to buy and in the end get totally bogged down and obsessed about any negative points I read!!

gingerbear Sun 14-Aug-05 22:48:45

Choose based on what you will mainly use it for. If you are a happy snapper like me, who likes to do a few arty shots, one with a manual mode will be fine. 5million pixels is a decent camera (although not the be all and end all). Stuff like battery life and shutter lag are important too.
The minute you buy it it will be out of date/replaced by an even more fantastic hi-tech model anyway - Our Olympus C765 was the bees knees when purchased early this year - now superceded by an even more superdooper dooh dah.
You can't win unless you are a photogeek with loads of money.

Linnet Sun 14-Aug-05 23:45:32

We bought a Sony DSC-W5 just a few weeks ago. all very straightforward and I even managed to download the photo's onto the computer the other night without losing them, so I was well chuffed. I'm not great with technical things.

We got a 64Mb memory stick free with it and I've been able to take up to 30+ photo's on it before it's full. It's got 5.1 mega pixels and 3.0x zoom. The screen is also slightly bigger than other cameras as it's got a 2.5inch screen. My friend told me that depending on what level you have the pixels set to depends on how many photo's you can get on the memory stick. We're going to the states in October and I'm planning on buying a bigger memory stick over there as it will work out cheaper than buying it here.

pjsmum Mon 15-Aug-05 09:40:09

We've had 2 Nikon Coolpix's in the last 6 months. Could recommend them both. We had a 4200 model, (got stolen)and replaced it with a 4600 model. No problems with either but dp preferred the 4200. I don't see any difference just think he's still pretty p**d off the thief!

beatie Mon 15-Aug-05 22:30:38

After several days research and many hours sat in front of the computer, I have made a decision and made a purchase.

I went for a Hewlett Packard R817. Now, I hope I never see another camera review for a few years.

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