Good upgrade from Sony DSC-F707

Started Dec 19, 2012 | Discussions thread
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Paul C
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Good upgrade from Sony DSC-F707
Dec 19, 2012

Hiya

I'm not new to digital photography, but I am new to the forum. A while ago (like, 10 years) I spent about £1000 on a good digital camera - a Sony DSC-F707. Its taken thousands of pics over the years and there's nothing wrong with it! However....the memory card is only 64MB, which pragmatically means on a holiday I need to stop and download the pics from the camera to a laptop twice a day or more. I have a laptop, but its an old one and the battery doesn't work (works on mains though). I have a desktop computer I use 99% of the time, so no need for a laptop and I don't want to spend £80 or so buying another battery for it.

I've looked at memory card upgrades for the Sony, but because its so old, it can't accept the newer MS card standard (MS Pro? MS Pro duo?), so I'm stuck with searching around for an older MS style card, and the largest is 128MB (I think?) which is not much of an upgrade (and these seem v expensive).

So....I'm looking around for a new camera. Last Saturday I went shopping and found a secondhand camera shop, I also took a trip to Jessops to see what's new. I actually found and bought a Fujifilm Finepix S1000 which on paper appears to be a good upgrade. It was only £40 so no great loss if I decide it doesn't really do the job for me, and I'll accept I need to save up for a better camera. There's still some features which I miss from the Sony:

- great aperture. The Sony achieves F2 at its widest focal length and F2.4 at full zoom (5x zoom)

- manual focus (the S1000 doesn't seem to have this)

- tilting screen....well, kind of, because the Sony's entire body tilts relative to the lens, which is similar in use.

The main one I miss is the aperture - I like to take pics in morning/dusk with poor light (amount), so I really do like the max aperture. Yes, the max ISO on the Sony is 'only' 400, and the Fuji goes up to much more, but at the end of the day, the lens on the Sony is really good quality and that's half the camera for quality etc. I also tried an old DSLR - a Nikon D20. Looking around though, to get anywhere near that aperture I'd be looking at a lot for a reasonable zoom lens (I don't need loads of focal length, just an 'average' amount for everyday pics etc, not really interested in the trend towards Superzoom etc).

Maybe I should play around more with the S1000 (it achieves F2.8 at its widest zoom) and put it into ISO800 and see if it copes okay, and the pics are good quality once I get home and look at them properly etc? Are DSLRs pictures at high ISO much better, so shooting eg at ISO1600 with a smaller aperture is realistic?

Or should I be saving up for a decent DSLR and decent lens to go with it? I know I could save a bit of money with a fixed focal length lens, not sure I'd want the hassle of swapping 2 or 3 of them though, so I think realistically it would need to be a zoom lens of some kind.

Also if I did go for an older secondhand DSLR, I'd miss the video capability. I did a search around and the Nikon F5000 seems a good 'balance' of age (ie cheaper SH) and features, what with having a tilting screen and video (does it allow on screen live preview, or are you stuck with the viewfinder?)

Many thanks in anticipation for the help!

Canon PowerShot D20 Panasonic Lumix DMC-F5
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