A breakdown of the world of cameras.
There are hundreds of camera models. New models are being announced every single month. New features are developed, boundaries broken and technologies invented. The moment you buy a camera, it’s obsolete. That’s what they used to say. Well, it isn’t exactly right. You see, today’s cameras are really quite good. Surely, there’s a new and improved model just around the corner, but chances are it will not be ground breaking compared to your day-old camera. And if it is, it’s going to cost accordingly.
In short, Relax! Most of the cameras you may buy will be ok. Their photos will look great. Your kids/landscape/trip/portraits/street will look better than with your previous camera. It’s just that the competition is so fierce, and prices so tight, that you can’t just go out there and get one, can you? You must explore, investigate, ask, compare!
This is where I come in. You don’t have to automatically trust me, but at least be sure I offer you a good sense of where you’re at and where you’re going. I successfully helped quite a few of people in buying the right camera for them.
Before we get down to business, one last piece of advice: Megapixels don’t matter. That’s a fact.
Six is enough. Eight is more than enough. Not convinced? Read what I have to say about megapixels.
The best out there
These compact digital cameras represent the industry’s cutting edge. They attempt to advance the quality of picture taking to another level. Dare I say, they succeed in their attempt better than any other. The sleekest of the bunch is Canon’s new S110, the compressed-DSLR, don’t-mess-with-me muscle compact is the G15, the new sophisticated, not-only-for-serious-photographers top-op-the-line low-light shooters are Panasonic’s LX7 and the Olympus XZ-2, and Nikon’s participation in the high-end parade in the shape of their new P7700 and P330.
See also here – High End Cameras.
The huge zoom “bridge” cameras
A complete package for a (mostly) reasonable price, this new segment is vastly popular.
Offering not-long-ago hard-to-imagine zoom ranges, in cameras half the size of a DSLR.
In general, these cameras do not offer the best possible image quality. For professionals, that is.
For casual photographers, for people on vacation, for parents, for all those who go
only as far as emailing or blogging their photos, this one camera is recommended as a perfect solution:
With a market leading x50 zoom and 24mm extra wide-angle lens, a swivel lcd and a hot-shoe (external flash connection) is Canon’s new SX50.
Sharing the lead in the zoom factor race with the SX50 are Fuji’s HS50EXR and Sony’s Cyber-shot HX300.
Nikon’s P520 isn’t shy, either, with a 24-1000mm x42 zoom.
And with a ‘humble’ x24 zoom, but with a constant f/2.8 max aperture – Panasonic’s FZ200 holds a class of its own.
There are others as well, with various packages of zoom range, image quality, controls and prices. Read all about these high ‘x’ factor cameras in the super zooms page.
See also here – Super Zoom Cameras.
The compact zooms
Further compressed, packed with new features, and a zoom range impossible on a DSLR,
the compact zooms are a balanced mixture of small (not in your jeans pocket) size,
decent image quality (on-screen, small prints, etc.), and a truly reasonable price.
The largest zoom belongs to the new Nikon Coolpix S9100, with a x18 zoom in a 214 gram body and selling for $329.
The best balanced do-it-all flagship of compact zooms (at $382) is Panasonic’s ZS10. Its less blessed twin, which has fewer features but the same basic parameters and the same x16 zoom, is the ZS8.
Holding a smaller, x14 zoom range (now at $349) is Canon’s SX230.
Sony’s players in the compact zoom segment also offer some neat features. Check out the excellent HX7V and HX9V and their simplified version, the H70.
See also here – Compact Zoom Cameras.
The ultra compacts
Some like it small. No need for phallic symbols strapped around your necks. You may prefer your cameras neatly tucked in your pants pocket. Sleek as it comes. I can safely recommend two such cameras: Canon’s ultra stylish, just x4 zoom, $199, ELPH 100 and $249 ELPH 300, Nikon’s 131 gram, x5 zoom, $179 S4100, Fuji’s 130 gram, x5 zoom, $151 JX350 and Panasonic’s $229, x8 zoom – FH27.
See also here – Ultra Compact Cameras.
Budget friendly cameras
See also here- Low Budget Cameras.