Minolta DiMAGE 7Hi review
This is a very good camera considering how much it cost me, and it was very good for me to learn how to take pictures. I beleive I know enough about photography now to move on to higher things, but I still like this camera and think you can get very good results, with a bit of know-how and luck.
It has controls for pratically everything, so there is almost nothing missing here that would find in a DSLR.
I was first disappointed by the AF system. It is slow, and fails sometimes. Also the EVF; it does not have enough resolution for you to be able to tell if the picture is out of focus.
Then I was disappointed by the high noise. It is useless to attempt to shoot anything at more than ISO 100, becuase the noise you will get is far too much (this is the reason I got aquainted with Neat Image Software, though even that is not enough to clean up the images). Indeed, if you notice, as someone else here did, that sometimes your images have a lot of noise and you don't know where it came from, you should make sure that you have set the sensitivity to ISO 100. Auto ISO will sometimes increse it to ISO 200, and that is already noisy.
And, the last thing I was disappointed by is the color balance. As I compare it to DSLRs I've seen, I notice it is just hard to get the White Balance done properly. Automatic White Balance is not good enough, since it gives me a huge purple cast in predominantly green pictures (such as pictures of forests), and it also fails in other circumstances. Using a white card to set white balance works relatively well, though.
And you can also complain about the resolution, if you want.
HOWEVER, bear in mind that I am about the make the jump to DLSRs and have been researching them for a while, and have thus become accustomed to their better quality.
This camera (or rather one of its succesors, for it is already somewhat old) offers you an excellent package that is only topped by DSLRs, which cost at least 3 to 4 times as much, if you include good lenses (DSLRs with bad lenses are no good).
If you use this camera to take snapshots of your vacation, you won't be disappointed, AND you can even get artistic shots that look quite good, f you learn how to use it.