View Full Version : Digital Camera, What to buy

Will Hunt
06-01-2004, 05:51 PM
I need some reccomendations for digital camers at around

$400 mark

??? what should i buy??

I want optical zoom, beyond that not sure. Could people reccomend some specific models ?

Jen C
06-01-2004, 05:59 PM
For $400 you are looking at around a 2.0 megapixel camera.

The Canon PowerShot A60 might suit you (I have the A70 model and it is great).

You can get this camera from ETown (http://www.etown.co.nz/detail.asp?item=589) for $409.00 (includ GST).

There is a review of this camera by Steves-digicams (http://www.steves-digicams.com/2003_reviews/a60.html).

Check out what sort of warranty ETown offers on their cameras.

Graham L
06-01-2004, 06:04 PM
The Canon are nice. I have an A40. (2 MP).

Any camera which takes alkaline AAs needs rechargables. :D (You can get NiMH for around $20/4 at trademe).

06-01-2004, 06:16 PM
$400 won't get much of a zoom or much resolution.
Would be better to get better resolution and flag the zoom, if the budget is fixed.

Graham L
06-01-2004, 06:33 PM
It does depend on what you want. Most people want "pictures" rather than professional "photographs". Pictures to be put on web sites don't need much resolution. :D My 2MP A40 does 1280x1600 (and has 3x oprical zoom) which is plenty for anything I might want ... I think I would not swap the zoom for extra resolution. That A60 might be 3.2 MP, and again 3X optical zoom. These Canons do have "digital" zoom as well, but that is off by default while taking pictures which is a very good idea.

Have a look at this book (http://www.frogprints.co.nz/buy/book.cfm) which might be helpful.

06-01-2004, 09:30 PM
I too have a 2mp camera,Infact we got 5 of them.

Takes big beautiful crisp photos.

Has 3xoptical zoom,i wouln't trade that for more megapixels at all,that would mean 3 times as much walking before i could take my pic.

I got this model

CX6230 Digital Camera 2 Megapixel - 3.3x Digital Zoom , 3x Optical Zoom, 1.6" LCD,16MB Internal memory - SD/MMC expansion Slot - Video Capture with Audio

Takes excellent 40 second video's as well.....

06-01-2004, 09:48 PM
And heres a beautiful Wanganui landscape to give an idea of the quality of a 2mp camera,well the quality of my one anyway.

May need to save it and open it in order to view it at 100% depending on your browser settings.


Neil McC
06-01-2004, 10:01 PM
Thanks for the book post Graham.Just wondering if you or Robo would know what a "hardened computer geek" is!!

06-01-2004, 10:35 PM
thats nice to see they pulling down a old building..
i used to go to wanganui quite often...can u tell me what building that was as i mite be able to recall it..
and its a very big picture on IE....and really good quality too...

and since we on digital cameras,
i've readed that the mars images are strong in resolution that it can be stretched to fit a movie screen without losing any quality or sharpness....what are they using? a zillion mp camera or what?

06-01-2004, 10:40 PM
That is the demolition of the DIC building in the main street of Wanganui,Used most recently by the warehouse stationary.

Quite a bit of disruption by the small heads in town before that job got under way.

06-01-2004, 11:53 PM
That's 2 megapixels?! Far bigger and better quality than a 1.something megapixel camera I've got.

Or is that due to optical zooming, or something.

07-01-2004, 12:00 AM
i think it was zoomed as i dont think they wuld let neone that close to a demolition site...unless he/she worked there...

07-01-2004, 12:06 AM

Last time i looked i was indeed male.

as to how i get that close?


The finished site will have a slightly different layout,im a fair way from finishing it.

07-01-2004, 12:41 AM
You should be able to get 3MP by now (or very soon) for ~$400. The prices are constantly dropping.

The nikon (3.2MP, 3x zoom, macro mode, very good camera) my dad got a couple of months ago has dropped to $499 from $849.

07-01-2004, 12:51 AM
I've used a couple of 3.2MP cameras and they produce v.nice quality. I personally wouldn't go for any less MPs than 3.2~. Spend any excess money on a nice big memory stick if you can.

Murray P
07-01-2004, 01:10 AM
Also be aware that some of the cheaper (mostly online) stores are selling parallel imports which will have an effect on the type of warranty and where to send for repairs.

Cheers Murray P

Will Hunt
07-01-2004, 03:41 PM
A 'friend' of mine has offered to sell me his sony cyber shot for $400, he said he bought it 3 months ago.

It looks like it would be suitable, andone heard any bad feedback about that brand ?

Graham L
07-01-2004, 03:56 PM
There seem to be quite a lot of models of "Sony Cyber Shot" cameras. :D Sony's a good brand. Have a look at the Imaging Resource (http://www.imaging-resource.com/) review site.

Have a look at a few cameras in a shop. Or a lot of cameras in several shops. :D Look through the viewfinder. See if all the controls are in the "natural" places. These are things that only you can decide. :-) A bigger LCD display is better for looking at pictures after they are take, but a good "optical" view finder is easier to use when shooting.

07-01-2004, 05:28 PM
Now Graham, you know we don't allow advertising on PressF1 :8} .

Neil McC
07-01-2004, 06:10 PM
" A bigger LCD display is better for looking at pictures after they are take, but a good "optical" view finder is easier to use when shooting."

Has anyone had a try of a camera with an lcd view finder,as I understand the Kodak DX6490 has one.Haven't seen one yet as the shop is "all sold out".I know that's a bit dearer,but seeing you're around,Robo!!

07-01-2004, 06:38 PM
When I last went to Wanganui it didn't look like a bomb site.

What have you done to it?

Good camera BTW. :-)

07-01-2004, 06:42 PM
My S602Z has an "Optical - LCD" viewfinder, which operates in a similar manner to a full SLR.

Its a very hi-res LCD, and you dont think about the fact its an LCD you are looking at to be honest. Only when you get a momentary "freeze" (programmable on/off) of the actual photo after you press the shutter do you think about it.

Its quite good, as you are truly looking through the lens in this manner.

07-01-2004, 07:41 PM
Well its deffinetly not my place......:p

but good photo Metla....


07-01-2004, 09:20 PM
> Now Graham, you know we don't allow advertising on
> PressF1 :8} .
> robo.

Took me awhile to find it but I thought it had been mentioned here previously:

BTW deleting those old buildings is a crime. someone should be shot for that. :-(

07-01-2004, 09:26 PM
A crime?
Someone should be shot?

The building was ruined,There was no other viable option,If the demolition had been stopped then that building would have continued to rot untill it collapsed.

Theres a much bigger picture out there then just people who aern't involved or possesing any of the facts to make statements such as that.

Nice use of the word deleting though.

07-01-2004, 10:00 PM
Its a pity the building was allowed to go to ruin in the first place. You ever been to Dunedin? There may be other places around the country but I know of none in NZ that have so many beautiful old buildings in excellent condition. There are untold numbers of dwellings and business buildings built in the late 1800's/early 1900's that add so much character to that wonderful city and its a damn shame that the rest of the country cant follow Dunedin's example. Restoration might be costly, particularly when left too late but once those buildings are gone there is no bringing them back. Society has too much of a disposable rather than recylable mind set these days unfortunately.

Sorry for the off topic. ;-)

07-01-2004, 10:44 PM
Are you Mike's brother?

07-01-2004, 10:58 PM
> Are you Mike's brother?

Is that question for me?

08-01-2004, 06:24 AM
No Metla, it was a question for Will Hunt.

I believe his brother Mike is well known to a lot of ladies.

Graham L
08-01-2004, 02:34 PM
Perhaps I should have said "a viewfinder which you use by looking through an eyepiece while holding the camera up against your face rather than looking at a screen with the camera held out in front of you at your focal length" . B-) I find that it is easier to hold the camera steady this way. "Optical finder": is easier to write, too. ;-) An "optical" finder such as GF's would be nice ... it gets around the parallax problem perfectly --- you are seeing what the sensor is seeing. Big money will get you a true SLR digital camera.

I suppose some of the LCD panels which can be "twisted" could be used like a waistlevel finder. :D

08-01-2004, 09:21 PM
> No Metla, it was a question for Will Hunt.
> I believe his brother Mike is well known to a lot of
> ladies.

Maybe his brothers name is Justin.

Will Hunt
04-02-2004, 06:08 PM
no, i don't have any brothers.

04-02-2004, 11:14 PM
Id just like to mention-
my dolphin 2MP camera does fine,for PC pics. Enough pixels,works up to ~60cm distance..has flash.

in bright sunlite u cant see the screen,so get one with a viewfinder(20$ more lol)

i just wanted something that wud work.and it does!
can take up to 512mb DSE memory...comes with 16mb.

it burns through AAA rechargables in 1 setting,jsut enuf to take pics,review them and get em onto pc :P shud look if theres any higher quality rechargables around.

ofcourse it wont print out magic photo pics like actual photo quality but my printer cant do that anyway,so im not worried! Mainly just for burning onto CD,etc..most the time i resize them to 800x600 for my website..

I conclude its 'satisfactory'

Billy T
04-02-2004, 11:29 PM
Keep it clean cappuccino, the Hunt brothers ( M, Y & H) are an old joke but not really appropriate here.


Billy 8-{) :|

05-02-2004, 02:09 PM
I've been using the same Mustec camera for about 4 years now I guess. (Yeah...about half a megapixel...but it's OK for my web page photos)
My observations...
>Yep...optical zoom much better than digital
>If inside photos are you're thing...make sure the flash is up to it...or you'll need to only take photos when there's lot's of natural light.
>Get rechargeable batteries and a charger. You get much more battery life and save money in the long run.
>Optical viewfinder does seem much better to use (and takes less battery power) than using an LCD as the viewfinder.

Something to be aware of. I was in a camera shop the other day looking at two cameras...the same basic model but different megapixel rating. The salesperson explained that the 'processor' bit (CDI?) was the same in both models but the higher one was, I suppose you'd say 'overclocked' so it could squeeze more info into an image. The guy said that this stuffing of data in can cause flaws in the image...so more megapixels in the same basic camera won't necessarily give you a better image.

05-02-2004, 02:40 PM
Maybe he was referiing to interpolation(spelling?)where the camera just adds data by reading the color of the pixels and having a punt.

Some scanners do it as well,they are advertised like 2804x 2000 maximum scanning resolution(only with provided softeware)...when the true scanning resolution is only half that.

A pure scam

05-02-2004, 02:45 PM

Method used in software to augment the resolution of an image map. The software adds pixels to an image based on the value of surrounding pixels, thereby increasing its resolution. This method can cause artefacting.

and heres a nice little site all about it


Graham L
05-02-2004, 02:48 PM
That's not as bad as a "New product announcement" for a camera with "more than 1 megapixel", in Electronics Australia a few years ago.

It had 300+k pixels , but they multiplied that by three (because red/blue/green). :_|