Best camera $200 or under?

Started May 2, 2013 | Discussions
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GatorDeb1 New Member • Posts: 4
Best camera $200 or under?

In order of importance:
* 1080p HD recording a MUST
* Image quality
* Low light quality
* Battery life

$200 firm. Just want to get the most bang for the buck.

Thanks!

AlbertInFrance
AlbertInFrance Senior Member • Posts: 5,418
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

What are you going to point it at?

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Albert
Every photograph is an abstraction from reality.

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Draek
Draek Senior Member • Posts: 2,028
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

Dunno; none, probably. All the decent sub-$200 cameras I know, like the Powershot A1400 or Sony H90, are limited to 720p by virtue of their CCD sensors.

Perhaps you'd share some models you've been researching thus far?

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lenshoarder Contributing Member • Posts: 609
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

If IQ is of import, get a mirrorless.  You can find Pentax Qs, and older M43 cameras in that range.  If you are OK with use, GF2 + 14-42mm kits can be had for $100+.

GatorDeb1 OP New Member • Posts: 4
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

It's to take pictures of a trip.

So far I like:

Canon PowerShot SX260 HS
Panasonic Lumix SZ7 
Canon PowerShot ELPH 330 HS
Nikon COOLPIX P310

Cosmo Not Junior Member • Posts: 28
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

Spend a little more, get much more. $288 for a k-01 on amazon. http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0076396OA/ref=mp_s_a_1?qid=1367591856&sr=8-1&pi=SL75 . There are many inexpensive lenses available, and the k-01 IQ is on par with $1000 DSLRs. It also has focus peaking. Best bang for the buck there is right now.

Cosmo Not Junior Member • Posts: 28
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

Correction: there is a yellow one for $249.

GatorDeb1 OP New Member • Posts: 4
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

That's for the body only, i.e. almost $100 more and unusable.

Bouldergramp
Bouldergramp Regular Member • Posts: 337
Re: Best camera $200 or under?
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Cailean Gallimore Veteran Member • Posts: 6,082
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

On a very tight budget like yours, I would consider second-hand or refurbished.

Cy Cheze Senior Member • Posts: 2,028
Best camera $200 camera = discounted $350 camera from prior year

Look for 2012 models that are being discounted to make room for 2013 replacements.  Some prices may indeed fall by close to 50%.  Some will offer decent features, including the video resolution you want, but just about all will have 1/2.3" sensors that struggle in low light.  Look for one with a wide-end aperture faster than F/3.5.  If you find a model with an aperture wider than F/2.8 it should shoot better in low light than others, though nothing spectacular.

These days, many people would simply use $200 to upgrade their phone.

GeraldW Veteran Member • Posts: 6,988
Re: reply to GatorDeb

Out of that group, I can personally recommend the SX260HS.  Remarkably good image quality, even at ISO 1600.

The rear LCD is usable in full sun if you take your sunglasses off.

I set mine to Program, turned iContrast to Auto, set ISO to Auto, and in the My Colors menu, went to Custom and set sharpening to +1.  Excellent results.

I have the older S90 as well, and compared the two on indoor shots at 100 mm (equivalent) where both have an f/4.9 aperture, and ISO 1600.  The SX260HS was noticeably cleaner looking with less noise and without the S90's yellow blotches.  The S90 is a little older now; but has a larger sensor with fewer pixels which should give it an edge over the smaller sensor in the SX230HS.  Apparently, the advances in sensors and processing have more than made up for that advantage.

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Jerry

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Dr Hal Senior Member • Posts: 1,009
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

In order to purchase the BEST camera $200.00 or under, one would have to buy a refurbished or used camera.  The best thing to do is keep checking on ebay and also the used forum here.  What is one person's BEST cameras is not another's.  It is all relative, however you will be able to purchase a GOOD camera if you shop carefully.

Hal

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brianj Forum Pro • Posts: 14,657
Re: reply to GatorDeb

GeraldW wrote:

Out of that group, I can personally recommend the SX260HS.  Remarkably good image quality, even at ISO 1600.

The rear LCD is usable in full sun if you take your sunglasses off.

I set mine to Program, turned iContrast to Auto, set ISO to Auto, and in the My Colors menu, went to Custom and set sharpening to +1.  Excellent results.

I agree with this, I bought a SX260 for $AU200 and have been pleasantly surprised by its ability.

To GeraldW:  I agree with the settings you recommend, but mine are IContrast=ON and also set My Colors contrast to +1 and use Centre Average Metering and EV=-.3 as defaults.  There is a wonderful sweet spot achieved then with vibrant colors and very little highlight clipping which I have not been able to better.

My SX260 album: http://www.dpreview.com/galleries/5128303546/albums/sx260hs

Brian

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003tvd Contributing Member • Posts: 901
Re: Best camera $200 camera = discounted $350 camera from prior year

I'm seeing new Nikon P310's for $199 CDN. It's well built, and has an f1.8 lens. Not as much zoom as some others. Has been replaced, so maybe there's good deals to be had.

OpticsEngineer Senior Member • Posts: 4,545
Re: reply to GatorDeb

I agree SX260.  Available as factory refurbished on the Canon web site for $209.

to get there, I usually google "Canon camera factory refurbished"

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GatorDeb1 OP New Member • Posts: 4
Re: Best camera $200 or under?

I ended up going with the Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS15 for $170.

DaveOl
DaveOl Veteran Member • Posts: 3,073
Re: Best camera $200 or under?
1

Even though it's too late since you just bought a camera, Cameta sells refurb Nikon One J 1's for

$ 209.  I'm not sure about what the video is.  That includes the 10-30mm kit lens.

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