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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    21

    Camera For Elderly Inlaws

    My mother in law is in her 80s.

    She recently complained about running out of film while sightseeing.

    I'd like to buy her a compact point and shoot digital camera to replace her film camera.

    Is this a good idea? If so, what camera's are the easiest to use for an older person who is techno challenged?

    Any suggestions for the easiest way to get prints would also be appreciated.

    Thanks



    Budget

    * What budget have you allocated for buying this camera? Less than $250

    Size

    * What size camera are you looking for? Compact, but not tiny


    Features

    How many megapixels will suffice for you? Not particular

    * What optical zoom will you need? Standard = 3x-4x

    * How important is “image quality” to you? 5

    Do you care for manual controls? No

    General Usage

    * What will you generally use the camera for? snapshots

    * Will you be making big prints of your photos or not? No

    Will you be shooting a lot of indoor photos or low light photos? some (Christmas, birthdays, etc)

    Will you be shooting sports and/or action photos? No

    Miscellaneous

    Are there particular brands you like or hate? No

    Are there particular models you already have in mind? No

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    West Midlands, UK
    Posts
    22
    The Fuji F10 or Canon A620 (which is a bit larger) look quite good.
    Current camera: Panasonic DMC-LX1

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Exeter, UK
    Posts
    883
    What camera is your Mother in Law currently using? It might be easier for her if the replacement is as similar as possible in operation.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    21
    Quote Originally Posted by AlexMonro
    What camera is your Mother in Law currently using? It might be easier for her if the replacement is as similar as possible in operation.
    That is a terrific suggestion, I'll see if I can find out.

    My biggest concern about buying her a digicam is that she will be too intimidated to use it.

    She uses email (MSN hotmail) and does IM, so she has some experience with her computer, and I think she does very well for her age...but she is intimidated and concerned that she is going to "break something"

    So, I need a strategy for getting her to use the camera and getting prints.

    Thanks again for any and all suggestions.

    Jeff

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    21
    Her current camera is a Kodak Advantix f600


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    21
    Any other suggestions?

    I also need ideas for helping her convert her pics to prints.

    She isn't savvy enough to upload them (and has a slow dialup, connection)

    I assume she could take the memory stick to Walmart, etc to get prints?

    Keep those ideas coming!

    Thanks again,

    Jeff

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    17
    I've been using the photo lab at Sams club it's cheap and easy. There are many places near by that you just pull the stick out of the camera and plug it in a machine to print your pictures. Most of them for about $4-$5 will put all your prints on CD too. Due to her age it would be worth it to have her pay a few cents more but use a camera shop that is more service oriented and would help her get the chip out and choose the pictures to print.

    Another idea would be to get her a 2 gig card and teach her how to get the pictures developed at a photoshop on her own, but have her never delete the pictures from the card. Once in a while you could stop by to help her upload them onto her computer and give her a fresh "roll of film".

    As for the camera. Go with one with a large view screen. Doesn't the A620 have a smaller screen than say the A 530/540/700?

    I think I would stay away from the ultra compacts. Old fingers can have a hard time gripping smaller things.

    Having tried to teach my own parents a few tech things, you must remember that the more features you give them more confusing and intimidating it will get. Go with something that has a very simple point and shoot mode. Maybe one that has no manual settings at all. You don't want to have to teach her about various scene modes either, it'll make it sound much more complicated. She needs just plain full automatic, with an easy to use flash control. You might avoid some of the cameras that have the mode setting dial on top that can easily get turned. It's just something to complicate and make it seem more difficult than it should be.

    I would probably get a camera that uses AA's... familiarity is a good thing. The camera picture you posted looks sort of like some of Sony's AA cameras.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    5

    Exclamation Late but important

    Hi. For an older person, you MUST have an optical viewfinder. I am an older person and will NOT buy a camera without one. Younger folks do not understand that we do not adapt to usiong an LCD.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Tooele, UT
    Posts
    277
    Any of Canon's A series of cameras are inexpensive, take great photos and are easy to use. My wife owns the new A430 and just loves it. She isn't into photography like me, so I looked for a camera that was easy to use. The A430 fit the bill and was small enough for her to carry it in her purse with her. My wife has always had small purses, so a camera like the A620 was just too big for her.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    21
    Quote Originally Posted by gafftape
    I've been using the photo lab at Sams club it's cheap and easy. There are many places near by that you just pull the stick out of the camera and plug it in a machine to print your pictures. Most of them for about $4-$5 will put all your prints on CD too. Due to her age it would be worth it to have her pay a few cents more but use a camera shop that is more service oriented and would help her get the chip out and choose the pictures to print.

    Another idea would be to get her a 2 gig card and teach her how to get the pictures developed at a photoshop on her own, but have her never delete the pictures from the card. Once in a while you could stop by to help her upload them onto her computer and give her a fresh "roll of film".

    As for the camera. Go with one with a large view screen. Doesn't the A620 have a smaller screen than say the A 530/540/700?

    I think I would stay away from the ultra compacts. Old fingers can have a hard time gripping smaller things.

    Having tried to teach my own parents a few tech things, you must remember that the more features you give them more confusing and intimidating it will get. Go with something that has a very simple point and shoot mode. Maybe one that has no manual settings at all. You don't want to have to teach her about various scene modes either, it'll make it sound much more complicated. She needs just plain full automatic, with an easy to use flash control. You might avoid some of the cameras that have the mode setting dial on top that can easily get turned. It's just something to complicate and make it seem more difficult than it should be.

    I would probably get a camera that uses AA's... familiarity is a good thing. The camera picture you posted looks sort of like some of Sony's AA cameras.


    OK, I've purchased the camera and also included 2 GB of memory.

    Lets assume that she can't deal with downloading pictures onto her computer and wants to get prints at a brick and mortar store.

    Can she take the camera and/or memory into Walmart and select the pics she wants to print while she is in the store?

    Lets assume that I see her a couple of times per year and she ends up never deleting any pics. She will have plenty of capacity to do that. Lets assume she has a hundred or more pictures stored in memory and wants to make prints from only a few of them, is that a problem.

    I always do this sort of thing online, so I have no clue what other options exist for those who insist on a brick and mortar experience.

    Thanks,

    Jeff

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