PDA

View Full Version : Looking for high quality digital camera



RobbieG
08-21-2004, 07:22 PM
So I've been doing quite a bit of research (especially on this site) on the perfect digital camera purchase. My #1 concern is image quality (picture noise, barrel effect, vignetting, purple fringing, etc.). I'd like at least 4-5mp, so I can crop things out of pictures and still make high quality prints. I'd like this camera to take outdoor scenic shots, but I'm also interested in macro closeups, as well as taking pictures of concerts. So I suppose I want it to do everything. I'm not ready to spend the money for a dslr, but would like one someday, so I'd like this camera to be a more convenient (smaller) compliment to a dslr, but still good quality, and without a dslr price. (I'm not ever sure if there is a camera that can do all this)

With that in mind, my research (majorty from reviews on this site), these have stood out to me:

-Canon PowerShot G6 (coming out sept 15 i believe)
-Canon PowerShot S60
-Fujifilm FinePix E550
-Kodak EasyShare DX6490
-Kodak EasyShre DX7630
-Nikon Coolpix 5400
-Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom
-Pentax Optio 555
-Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W1

I appologize for the long list (and some might be out of my pricerange at retail value), but I am very interested in peoples opinions and any other suggestions you may have for me. Again, I'm interested in image quality.

speaklightly
08-21-2004, 08:08 PM
Hi Robbie-

Looking at your list, I would choose the Kodak DX-6490 if you need a long zoom digital camera and the Fuji E-550 if you need a high resolution, extra sharp and clear digital camera capable of 4X optical zoom and even raw image manipulation.

Sarah Joyce

RobbieG
08-21-2004, 08:39 PM
Thanks Sarah. I'm going to check those out.

The only thing about the dx6490 is that it's 4mp, which I know is plenty for regular prints, but it seems like I"m settling for a lesser camera (maybe i'm just a victim to the high megapixel advertisements). Also, the 6490 doesn't have image stabilization, correct? And does it do ok with macro?

To add one to the list, the Canon A95 seems like it might be nice (I didn't list before because it wasn't reviewed on this site). How would this compare to the Fuji e550?

John_Reed
08-21-2004, 11:25 PM
So I've been doing quite a bit of research (especially on this site) on the perfect digital camera purchase. My #1 concern is image quality (picture noise, barrel effect, vignetting, purple fringing, etc.). I'd like at least 4-5mp, so I can crop things out of pictures and still make high quality prints. I'd like this camera to take outdoor scenic shots, but I'm also interested in macro closeups, as well as taking pictures of concerts. So I suppose I want it to do everything. I'm not ready to spend the money for a dslr, but would like one someday, so I'd like this camera to be a more convenient (smaller) compliment to a dslr, but still good quality, and without a dslr price. (I'm not ever sure if there is a camera that can do all this)

With that in mind, my research (majorty from reviews on this site), these have stood out to me:

-Canon PowerShot G6 (coming out sept 15 i believe)
-Canon PowerShot S60
-Fujifilm FinePix E550
-Kodak EasyShare DX6490
-Kodak EasyShre DX7630
-Nikon Coolpix 5400
-Olympus C-5060 Wide Zoom
-Pentax Optio 555
-Sony Cyber-shot DSC-W1

I appologize for the long list (and some might be out of my pricerange at retail value), but I am very interested in peoples opinions and any other suggestions you may have for me. Again, I'm interested in image quality.I wondered, from all the criteria you set, why you hadn't included the Panasonic DMC-FZ10 on your list? It has more zoom than any camera on your list, a faster lens (f2.8 across the zoom range), image stabilization, and 4MP. Did I miss an earlier post in which you gave the reason for not considering it?

RobbieG
08-22-2004, 12:14 AM
I wondered, from all the criteria you set, why you hadn't included the Panasonic DMC-FZ10 on your list? It has more zoom than any camera on your list, a faster lens (f2.8 across the zoom range), image stabilization, and 4MP. Did I miss an earlier post in which you gave the reason for not considering it?
This was on my list before I narrowed it down and tried to cut some out. I guess why I cut this one out is because of its size. Like I said, I would like a dslr somday, and wanted this digital camera to be a smaller, more convenient compliment. Plus Sarah has mentioned in a few posts how big this camera is, further pushing me to look at something easier to carry/take traveling. Also in the review on this site, he had complaints about annoyances in macro mode and high barrel distortion.

Ben Miller
08-22-2004, 07:20 AM
I can't comment on most of the cameras in your list, but I can offer some feedback about the model I know best: I've had an Olympus C-5060 WZ for a few months and I've been very pleased with it. I had some of the same criteria that you do and chose the Oly because it seemed to be the closest I could come to a dSLR without spending huge wads of cash. It has all the manual controls you could want and they're reasonably easy to use. The lens goes wider than most, which is nice for landscapes and indoor shots. Noise isn't as good as a dSLR, but it's pretty good. I haven't seen more than a faint hint of purple fringing.

If you have any specific questions about this model, I'd be happy to answer them.

RobbieG
08-22-2004, 09:21 AM
I can't comment on most of the cameras in your list, but I can offer some feedback about the model I know best: I've had an Olympus C-5060 WZ for a few months and I've been very pleased with it. I had some of the same criteria that you do and chose the Oly because it seemed to be the closest I could come to a dSLR without spending huge wads of cash. It has all the manual controls you could want and they're reasonably easy to use. The lens goes wider than most, which is nice for landscapes and indoor shots. Noise isn't as good as a dSLR, but it's pretty good. I haven't seen more than a faint hint of purple fringing.

If you have any specific questions about this model, I'd be happy to answer them.
Do you turn the sharpness down to reduce the noise? Also, do you notice any barrel effect? Those seemed to be issues in the review.

Maybe I'm too critical, expecting dslr quality out of a smaller, cheaper digital camera.

speaklightly
08-22-2004, 10:46 AM
Robbie-

Yes, the Kodak DX-6490 is a non stabilized and just 4mp. However, it is a much smaller and very capable digital camera. At about $US 340 on the internet, it represents a real value. The new Kodak DX-7590 will be priced right at $US 500, when it becomes available this fall.

Sarah Joyce

Ben Miller
08-22-2004, 06:32 PM
Do you turn the sharpness down to reduce the noise? Also, do you notice any barrel effect? Those seemed to be issues in the review.

Maybe I'm too critical, expecting dslr quality out of a smaller, cheaper digital camera.

Yes, I have turned down the sharpness some. It's not a noiseless camera. However, I haven't found it objectionable. The other day I took a series of photos in full daylight and realized when I downloaded them that I had accidentally set the ISO to 400 and left it there. The noise was visible, but not excessive. I think that once consumer digital cameras went much past 3 or 4 MP noise became a fact of life. Current "upper end" 5 MP cameras are supposedly less noisy than (or at least on par with) their high end 8 MP siblings. In this respect, if you want dSLR quality, you need to get a dSLR. :rolleyes:

I've never noticed objectionable barrel distortion, even at full wideangle. I suppose that certain scenes would make it more obvious, but in general it's not a problem. Maybe I'm just not picky enough.

If you want to look at some more samples from this camera here's a link for you. (http://www.wrotniak.net/photo/c5050/c5060-samp.html) The author has several other pages that go into GREAT depth on his opinion of the 5060. Go ahead and read them, and then you'll know that you're spending way too much time on this problem. ;)

John_Reed
08-22-2004, 08:00 PM
Do you turn the sharpness down to reduce the noise? Also, do you notice any barrel effect? Those seemed to be issues in the review.

Maybe I'm too critical, expecting dslr quality out of a smaller, cheaper digital camera.FYI, it's practically impossible to avoid some barrel distortion for almost any camera at the extreme of its wideangle range. I'd be very surprised to hear of a camera, any camera, that didn't show some barrel distortion at full wideangle.

pyr3sayz
08-22-2004, 09:13 PM
Do you turn the sharpness down to reduce the noise? Also, do you notice any barrel effect? Those seemed to be issues in the review.

Maybe I'm too critical, expecting dslr quality out of a smaller, cheaper digital camera.

That's part of the problem that I've found in my search. You spend too much time looking at the specs and reading critical reviews. It's easy to hear the reviewers say 'Ugh. Barrel distortion bad!' and react with a 'OMG! I need a camera with no barrel distortion!'. Granted, critical reviews are a good thing. The problem is that you need to take it with a grain of salt which is hard to do when reviews and specs are all you have to base your decision on. It's easy to get caught up in being obsessed with needing the camera to have the least amounts of these bad things, and the most amounts of these good things. You really need to just compare the cameras to what is on the market now. And take the reviews and specs in comparison to the specs of the others. I haven't seen any sites that use methodology in reviewing a camera so that it can be compared with other cameras on equal ground, unfortunately. I've also run into the situation where the specs for the same camera are different from site to site.

The moral of the story: Look at the cameras in comparison to others, and use reviews as guidelines. Take a calm breath when you get too obsessed about the specs. Especially if you are looking into a dslr in the future. THAT will be the camera to obsess over specs about. Especially with the amount of money that you'll need to pour into it.