Point and Shoot: Only First Hand Users and Reviewers Here Please.

Started Dec 30, 2007 | Discussions thread
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kwanbis Junior Member • Posts: 41
Point and Shoot: Only First Hand Users and Reviewers Here Please.

Hello everybody.

Before starting, let me tell you that I know this type of question is probably asked weekly or monthly.

I also know that "best" is a subjective matter, and what is good for me, my be bad for you.

But I'm asking for advice from "first hand users", people that have used the cameras, that use them daily or have had long experience with them.

Anyway, what I want to buy, is the "perfect point and shoot (ultra) compact camera".

I know that is very difficult to find the "perfect (ultra) compact camera", because of tech limitations, and because of the "mega pixels race".

Why don't I just go out and try them all? Well, there are too many cameras to try, and in my country is not possible to go out, buy a couple cameras, and then return them if they are not liked, something I really envy from countries like USA. Also, there is a much shorter selection of cameras here, and as I’m going to USA next march, I would love to bring back a camera with me.

Why don't I read the forums? I have. But as technology changes, and new cameras are released, the information changes. In fact, I have been searching all week, but I still can not find what I want. Also, the perfect camera from a year ago, either no longer exists, or has been bettered (or not) by another one.

I'm a "point-and-shotter-foto-maniac"; meaning that I love to take a lot of pictures, but have almost no photography knowledge.

I just want to take out the camera, point, shoot, and expect the camera to get me the best picture possible.

I could probably learn 2 or 3 tricks, but I have to many things to worry about in my life as an IT guy to also learn camera tricks.

I also know that with this type of cameras there would be compromises.

So this is why it gets trickier, and why I require some advice. If all cameras where perfect, I wouldn't be asking here, right?

So this is what I (and probably everybody) want in a camera, in order of importance:

1) As compact as possible: I used to have a Canon S1 IS and a Sony DSC-H2, both very good cameras, but so big, that I would never carry them, so they where nowhere to be seen when the occasion to take a picture arose.

2) Quality of pictures in automatic mode: right besides portability, it is the quality of pictures. It would be no good to carry a camera all the time, if when I take a picture, it looks ugly as hell. As I’m not an expert, and I don't intend to, the better the automatic mode, the better the camera. I can also live with a set of pre-configured modes.

3) Quality of pictures in Low Light: I love to take pictures at any time, and at any light condition, so a camera that can take good pictures in low light is very important. Image Stabilization or any other compensation trick would be perfect.

4) Speed: a camera is no good if it takes forever to take a picture. By the time it is ready, that moment would be gone. So, the faster the camera to startup, shut, etc, the better.

5) Optical Zoom: 3x minimum. This is almost a standard, so I don't see any issue here. Bigger zooms would be better, but I’ll do fine with 3x.

Oh, and all this with possibly no more than $250 (300 at the very, very top).

Canons have been recommended many times in the forums, but my personal experience with them has been less than stellar. I have now an SD1000, and used to have a S1 IS. Maybe is MY fault, but as of today, I want to change the SD1000. It is very slow for my taste. And low light pictures are blurry.

Fujis have also been recommended a lot, but some people love them, and some hate them. The best Fuji appears to be the F30/31, but is no more, or too expensive. The F50 appears to be the top now.

Panasonics less "mainstream", and the only one I have seen I like is the TZ3, but it appears to be not so good at low light.

Samsung, my first hand experience is with the NV10, which is the camera my sister has. I is very cool, has an excellent interface, but again, I have read excellent reviews, and not so good ones. NV11 appears to be an improved NV10.

Last, Casios are the ones I’m more inclined to buy, especially the Z1080 or the S880. But in one side I have seen great reviews, and in the other side people say that Casios are not very reliable, etc. And to make things worse, they are not so common to get information.

So, what does the real users think about them? What does real users think about other models? Which is the camera that more is more close to what I want? Any other better option? What about Pentax, Ricoh, Sony, etc? I would love to get as much feedback as possible.

Thanks, and happy new year.

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