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digital camera recommendation
Posted by: hotdogthemovie
Date: January 04, 2012 03:06PM
I need a recommendation for a new digital camera. I have a Cannon point and shoot, which takes great 720p video, but it is so slow when it comes to the focus and shoot part of the equation. That's trouble because I have a 5 year old daughter who doesn't really like to stop and wait forever for Daddy's camera to catch up with her. And then, after taking time to focus, the image is still sometimes blurry, even though she is not moving.

So...
  • I would like another point and shoot that I can carry in my pocket.
  • 720p video is great, but I also have a JVC digital camcorder that I use for most events.
  • I have several SD cards I would like to use in the new camera, so that is important (the 16GB, 10x type)
  • not sure how to describe this in camera tech terms, but it needs to focus and snap the picture quickly
  • maybe around $150? Refurbs are fine...

Any recommendations?
TIA
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: mikebw
Date: January 04, 2012 03:23PM
A DSLR would be the fastest auto-focusing camera but those are pretty solidly out of your price range it seems.
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: iaJim
Date: January 04, 2012 03:24PM
iPhone
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: hotdogthemovie
Date: January 04, 2012 04:04PM
DSLR would be great... but aren't they usually large. I could spend more money, but I don't want a huge camera hanging around my neck. I'd just tend to leave it at home...

iPhone would also be great... can I get one only to take pics? I have a iPod Touch... camera sucks. I was hoping for an upgrade last fall, but alas... maybe I just need to wait until this fall.
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: space-time
Date: January 04, 2012 04:05PM
Lytro, you can focus AFTER taking the shot. You will never have an "out of focus" picture smiling smiley Blurry, maybe, out of focus, not.

No, I have not used one, they look weird and who knows what else...
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: mikebw
Date: January 04, 2012 04:13PM
Quote
hotdogthemovie
DSLR would be great... but aren't they usually large. I could spend more money, but I don't want a huge camera hanging around my neck. I'd just tend to leave it at home...

iPhone would also be great... can I get one only to take pics? I have a iPod Touch... camera sucks. I was hoping for an upgrade last fall, but alas... maybe I just need to wait until this fall.

Traditional DSLRs are large because of the large image sensor and lenses required to project an image onto it. Fast contrast-detection auto-focus requires a lot of light. The bigger the camera the more light.

Alternatively you can just get a bright light and shine it on your daughter all the time, should help with your current camera.

Might also look into one of the mirror-less SLR cams like the SONY NEX series, much smaller body than their Alpha series and also very fast from what I have read.
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: Trouble
Date: January 04, 2012 04:23PM
Teach her patience?
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: flareslow
Date: January 04, 2012 04:50PM
Cnet offered these recommendations before the holidays.

Cnet Camera Recommendations
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: datbeme
Date: January 04, 2012 04:57PM
Tradeoffs!

Quote
I have a Cannon point and shoot, which takes great 720p video, but it is so slow when it comes to the focus and shoot part of the equation. That's trouble because I have a 5 year old daughter who doesn't really like to stop and wait forever for Daddy's camera to catch up with her. And then, after taking time to focus, the image is still sometimes blurry, even though she is not moving.

A DLSR addresses these issues.

Quote
DSLR would be great... but aren't they usually large. I could spend more money, but I don't want a huge camera hanging around my neck. I'd just tend to leave it at home...

Understood. This is why you need both! Maybe not the most practical answer, but your daughter isn't going to be 5 forever. Even if you use the point and shoot 90% of the time, the shots you get the 10% of the time you have the DSLR are worth the trouble and the expense.
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: deckeda
Date: January 04, 2012 05:00PM
If your Canon is a few years old --- you didn't mention which one you had --- new P&S models are usually faster at focusing and snapping the shutter. Then again, it has 720p video capability, so it's not ancient.

There's no real substitute for a DSLR for responsiveness. You can carry something smaller and lighter but if it can't get the shot, it's the one that's deadweight, not the DSLR.

Consider putting aside your short term desire to carry essentially nothing for the long term benefit of having decent pictures of your kids.

Just because they won't fit in your pocket doesn't mean they have to hang on your neck. There are shoulder and belt solutions, too. What a lot of parents do is carry a larger camera bag (i.e. "gadget" bag), set it down, take camera/compose/shoot and put camera back in bag.

I'm not saying you'll casually schlep it to dinner out or whatever, but it's not like it's a hardship either.
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: freeradical
Date: January 04, 2012 06:29PM
Can you turn the focusing off? You really don't need to focus with a p&s since it has such a short focal length lens.
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Re: digital camera recommendation
Posted by: h linamen
Date: January 05, 2012 08:02AM
Panasonic Lumix ZS8 or ZS9 - around $149. Check Amazon. Love it. Way smaller than a DSLR and would work great for you AND your 5 year old. Has 16X zoom leica lens and Auto or manual controls such as shutter or aperture priority, along with many "Scene" settings. I had the Lumix TZ5 and only parted with it to upgrade to this model. Gets great reviews.
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