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Best Photo Quality in a Point & Shoot for Novice

Best Photo Quality in a Point & Shoot for Novice

Old Apr 8, 14, 3:46 pm
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Best Photo Quality in a Point & Shoot for Novice

I have a Canon SD800 IS that I used for years and liked just fine, but it no longer works.

To replace it I got a Nikon Coolpix AW100, but I dislike almost everything about the camera. It seemed like a good fit on paper, but the reality is that it is not a great match.

I am a novice interested in the best photo quality possible. I use the automatic or preset options.

I primarily take pictures of hotel rooms, often in low light. I don't care about video functionality and I am only slightly interested in wifi or gps. I may edit a few photos out of one hundred, but most of them will be uploaded to the web as-is.

In case it's helpful, these are the kinds of pictures that I take: https://www.flickr.com/photos/luxurytravelworks/sets

I do care about the size of the camera and the charger - smaller is better. It doesn't have to be the smallest. I need image stabilization. I try and add close up shots to the mix whenever possible, so macro capability is also important. I prefer a rechargeable battery. Additionally, I would like a camera with somewhat intuitive, or at least logical, ergonomics. I am flexible about budget.

I have read a lot of reviews and specs.The Canon Elph 340 HS and the Canon SX280 seem like possible contenders, but neither have won me over. The Panasonic's seem popular, but I have no experience with them.

I would truly appreciate any suggestions or advice that you could offer me!

Erin
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Old Apr 8, 14, 4:04 pm
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I have a Canon S100 as a P+S that compliments my 'big' stuff.

It's pocketable with easy to use buttons and a programmable function ring on the front that you can customise to your liking.

It's slim as it doesn't rely on AA batteries. I bought a couple of spare chargable lion slim batteries and they cost pence.

In automatic / preset modes it's excellent and exposes well. Colours are nice and vivid.

I think the IQ is good for a compact of its size and weight.

If you want ultimate IQ in a compact take a look at the Canon G12 and G1X, but these are high end, chunky, and a bit ugly.

A comparison of it vs your current camera: http://snapsort.com/compare/Canon-S1...rShot_SD800_IS



Use http://snapsort.com/compare and then type in SD800 IS v whatever you want to compare it to. Excellent site that shows the differences in a nice clear format.
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Old Apr 9, 14, 9:56 am
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The Canon S100 is awesome, but the S120 is out too. Not sure if it is worth the $200 extra though...
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Old Apr 9, 14, 10:58 am
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Best photo quality is probably the Sony RX100 II. But it's rather pricey at about $700. Has a 1" sensor which is considerably larger than most compacts and will give you better low light performance. Has optical image stabilization and seems to have good high ISO performance as well.
http://www.imaging-resource.com/PROD...-rx100-iiA.HTM
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Old Apr 9, 14, 12:13 pm
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For low light photography, a tripod is a must. It doesn't matter if you are using a full frame DSLR or a point and shoot. Set your ISO to lowest, aperture to max, and do some test shots in shutter priority mode (the camera picks the "best" shutter speed in this mode). Then you can tweak the shutter speed and aperture accordingly.
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Old Apr 9, 14, 1:51 pm
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Originally Posted by glennaa11 View Post
Best photo quality is probably the Sony RX100 II. But it's rather pricey at about $700. Has a 1" sensor which is considerably larger than most compacts and will give you better low light performance. Has optical image stabilization and seems to have good high ISO performance as well.
http://www.imaging-resource.com/PROD...-rx100-iiA.HTM
^^^

Cheers
T.
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Old Apr 9, 14, 2:51 pm
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Originally Posted by glennaa11 View Post
Best photo quality is probably the Sony RX100 II. But it's rather pricey at about $700. Has a 1" sensor which is considerably larger than most compacts and will give you better low light performance. Has optical image stabilization and seems to have good high ISO performance as well.
http://www.imaging-resource.com/PROD...-rx100-iiA.HTM
+1 for the Sony RX100 M2. A well designed piece of kit which delivers high quality image outputs. Importantly for me, its small size means I can pocket the device. Well worth the price premium.
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Old Apr 9, 14, 5:52 pm
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No question - its the Sony RX100.

Correction on the stabilization: it's only for video mode; there is no sensor or lens stabilization for still images. However the wide aperture of the lens (still good sharpness depth due to focal length) and decent sized sensor allows excellent low-light performance for the camera size. Moderately wide angle of view for interiors like hotel rooms.

JPEG image is very good. Excellent close-focus distance of 2 inches. Superbly convenient battery because it charges in-body via micro-USB slot (i.e. the same for smartphones). Don't have to carry external charger around.

Price is a little steep for the newer Mark 2 which has built-in WiFi if you find that useful. Otherwise the original RX100 will serve you just as well. There were some smoking deals on them the last few months. Shouldnt need to pay more than 500 for them
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Old Apr 9, 14, 6:52 pm
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[QUOTE=deniah;22678982]No question - its the Sony RX100.



Superbly convenient battery because it charges in-body via micro-USB slot (i.e. the same for smartphones). Don't have to carry external charger around.


Yes, the in-body charge works well; however, the external charger weighs only 17g, or 41g incl. battery and can be powered through a usb port.
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Old Apr 10, 14, 8:26 am
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Thank you all for your insight! Snapsort is great for getting into the details of all of the features and specs.

I have a question about zoom. It seems the better quality cameras all have less zoom. I'm not sure what this means. I know that on my previous two cameras I never used the full zoom capabilities because the photos always ended up grainy. Is zoom like sunscreen, where you can buy a higher number but it's really not going to make any difference in the end?

I'm a little concerned that the Sony RX 100 is too much camera for me - that I won't be able to make use of it's capabilities. As a novice, will I notice or be able to appreciate the difference between it and say the Canon S120? Or between those and the type of camera I have been using?

I really appreciate your time and expertise.

Erin
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Old Apr 10, 14, 9:09 am
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Originally Posted by luxtrvlwrks View Post
Thank you all for your insight! Snapsort is great for getting into the details of all of the features and specs.

I have a question about zoom. It seems the better quality cameras all have less zoom. I'm not sure what this means. I know that on my previous two cameras I never used the full zoom capabilities because the photos always ended up grainy. Is zoom like sunscreen, where you can buy a higher number but it's really not going to make any difference in the end?

I'm a little concerned that the Sony RX 100 is too much camera for me - that I won't be able to make use of it's capabilities. As a novice, will I notice or be able to appreciate the difference between it and say the Canon S120? Or between those and the type of camera I have been using?

I really appreciate your time and expertise.

Erin
those arent real zooms. theyre digital zoom, which means just blowing up the images. (or the opening in the lens is so small at long zoom distance that it bumped the sensitivity that introduces more noise)

if youre shooting indoors you wont use the zoom.

the original rx100 isnt priced differently from the s120. the real difference is you'll have cleaner and/or less shaky pictures in the dark (and/or at longer zoom range!).

you can always bring a memory card to the store, and take some test shots with the 2 cameras to compare at home. maybe you can take photos of underneath the display stands to simulate darker lighting condition
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Old Apr 10, 14, 11:24 am
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Originally Posted by glennaa11 View Post
Best photo quality is probably the Sony RX100 II. But it's rather pricey at about $700. Has a 1" sensor which is considerably larger than most compacts and will give you better low light performance. Has optical image stabilization and seems to have good high ISO performance as well.
http://www.imaging-resource.com/PROD...-rx100-iiA.HTM
Originally Posted by deniah View Post
those arent real zooms. theyre digital zoom, which means just blowing up the images. (or the opening in the lens is so small at long zoom distance that it bumped the sensitivity that introduces more noise)

if youre shooting indoors you wont use the zoom.

the original rx100 isnt priced differently from the s120. the real difference is you'll have cleaner and/or less shaky pictures in the dark (and/or at longer zoom range!).

you can always bring a memory card to the store, and take some test shots with the 2 cameras to compare at home. maybe you can take photos of underneath the display stands to simulate darker lighting condition
Digital zoom, fortunately, is a rarity these days. But cramming a 20-50x zoom into a small (and, by necessity, inexpensive) lens forces the designers to make compromises.

Unless you are keen on bird or other wildlife photography, you will find the wide end of the lens far more useful than extreme telephoto. The Sony has a highly usable zoom range that you are probably going to be happy with.

And as for "too much camera", what you are paying for is the larger sensor and excellent (for this class of camera) optics. The Sony has some excellent features but it is not gimmicky, at all. Think of it as a camera you can grow into and with.

Cheers,
T.
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Old Apr 10, 14, 12:25 pm
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I am also looking for a point and click but have a safari planned for September so am wondering if the RX100 would be suitable. If not can anyone recommend a point and click with zoom that would be. Or should I look for a bridge camera which I guess is a point and click with advanced features.
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Old Apr 10, 14, 12:50 pm
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Originally Posted by valleyrun38 View Post
I am also looking for a point and click but have a safari planned for September so am wondering if the RX100 would be suitable. If not can anyone recommend a point and click with zoom that would be. Or should I look for a bridge camera which I guess is a point and click with advanced features.
I went on my first digital-era safari in 2003 armed with a Pentax Optio S featuring a 3 MP sensor and a 3X zoom. The pictures were OK.

The common wisdom is that you want the longest possible lens on a safari. I am not 100% sure that is always the case. The Sony lens has a full-frame equivalent 28-100 mm zoom range. Optimally, you'd want a longer lens. However, in most safari locations you can get fairly close to the animals and won't miss many shots because of the lens (unless you are keen on birds).

If, however, you feel you want a longer zoom, you could take a look at something like the Fujifilm FinePix S1. It has a 24-1200 mm equivalent reach and Fujifilm cameras are typically very well made.

Cheers,
T.
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Old Apr 10, 14, 4:31 pm
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are there any good shutter lag comparisons (and possibly focus/total lag) ?

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; Apr 10, 14 at 4:37 pm
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