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P&S optical viewfinders

 
 
Colin Brace
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      04-03-2006
Some months ago, I retired a 35mm Yashica T5 in favor of a Sony DSC W5,
which takes better pictures and is in many ways a more versatile
camera. However, in one particular respect, the Yashica was superior to
the Sony; its optical viewfinder was much better. My number one
aggravation with the Sony is that its viewfinder is about 25% smaller
than the actual picture. I like to photograph architecture (see
<flickr.com/photos/cbrace>), and I spend an inordinate amount of effort
trying to frame the pictures correctly, since normally it is a tight
fit, and it exasperates me no end that that what I see throught the
optical viewfinder doesn't match the final image.

At this point, buying a different camera is not an option but just out
of curiosity: are there digital P&S cameras with better optical
viewfinders? I for one just can't get used to shooting pictures by
means of the TFT screen, like I see many people doing.

--
Colin Brace
Amsterdam

 
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David J Taylor
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      04-03-2006
Colin Brace wrote:
> Some months ago, I retired a 35mm Yashica T5 in favor of a Sony DSC
> W5, which takes better pictures and is in many ways a more versatile
> camera. However, in one particular respect, the Yashica was superior
> to the Sony; its optical viewfinder was much better. My number one
> aggravation with the Sony is that its viewfinder is about 25% smaller
> than the actual picture. I like to photograph architecture (see
> <flickr.com/photos/cbrace>), and I spend an inordinate amount of
> effort trying to frame the pictures correctly, since normally it is a
> tight fit, and it exasperates me no end that that what I see throught
> the optical viewfinder doesn't match the final image.
>
> At this point, buying a different camera is not an option but just out
> of curiosity: are there digital P&S cameras with better optical
> viewfinders? I for one just can't get used to shooting pictures by
> means of the TFT screen, like I see many people doing.


Colin,

For your next camera, look at those with an Electronic Viewfinder (EVF).
This is small LCD, which is fitted into an SLR-like viewfinder enclosure,
so you use it like an SLR and bring the camera to your face. Being
electronic rather than a "best-attempt compromise" optical finder, it can
be 100% accurate. However, the image quality is not as high as the finder
on an SLR.

For my architectural stuff, I like my Nikon 8400 with its 24 - 85mm zoom,
coupled with a long-zoom camera (the Panasonic FZ5) for details. I hope
you have already discovered combining images automatically for a wider
view, and using programs such as Paint Shop Pro for "perspective
correction".

David


 
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David J. Littleboy
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      04-03-2006

"David J Taylor" <(E-Mail Removed)-this-bit.nor-this-part.uk>
wrote:
> Colin Brace wrote:
>> Some months ago, I retired a 35mm Yashica T5 in favor of a Sony DSC
>> W5, which takes better pictures and is in many ways a more versatile
>> camera. However, in one particular respect, the Yashica was superior
>> to the Sony; its optical viewfinder was much better. My number one
>> aggravation with the Sony is that its viewfinder is about 25% smaller
>> than the actual picture. I like to photograph architecture (see
>> <flickr.com/photos/cbrace>), and I spend an inordinate amount of
>> effort trying to frame the pictures correctly, since normally it is a
>> tight fit, and it exasperates me no end that that what I see throught
>> the optical viewfinder doesn't match the final image.
>>
>> At this point, buying a different camera is not an option but just out
>> of curiosity: are there digital P&S cameras with better optical
>> viewfinders? I for one just can't get used to shooting pictures by
>> means of the TFT screen, like I see many people doing.

>
> Colin,
>
> For your next camera, look at those with an Electronic Viewfinder (EVF).
> This is small LCD, which is fitted into an SLR-like viewfinder enclosure,
> so you use it like an SLR and bring the camera to your face. Being
> electronic rather than a "best-attempt compromise" optical finder, it can
> be 100% accurate. However, the image quality is not as high as the finder
> on an SLR.


SLR snots such as myself often turn up their noses at these, but I really
enjoyed the Sony F707's EVF.

The only problem is that you should try before you buy; a lot of the EVFs
aren't as nice as the Sony's was.

David J. Littleboy
Tokyo, Japan


 
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David J Taylor
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      04-03-2006
David J. Littleboy wrote:
> "David J Taylor"
> <(E-Mail Removed)-this-bit.nor-this-part.uk> wrote:
>> Colin Brace wrote:
>>> Some months ago, I retired a 35mm Yashica T5 in favor of a Sony DSC
>>> W5, which takes better pictures and is in many ways a more versatile
>>> camera. However, in one particular respect, the Yashica was superior
>>> to the Sony; its optical viewfinder was much better. My number one
>>> aggravation with the Sony is that its viewfinder is about 25%
>>> smaller than the actual picture. I like to photograph architecture
>>> (see <flickr.com/photos/cbrace>), and I spend an inordinate amount
>>> of effort trying to frame the pictures correctly, since normally it
>>> is a tight fit, and it exasperates me no end that that what I see
>>> throught the optical viewfinder doesn't match the final image.
>>>
>>> At this point, buying a different camera is not an option but just
>>> out of curiosity: are there digital P&S cameras with better optical
>>> viewfinders? I for one just can't get used to shooting pictures by
>>> means of the TFT screen, like I see many people doing.

>>
>> Colin,
>>
>> For your next camera, look at those with an Electronic Viewfinder
>> (EVF). This is small LCD, which is fitted into an SLR-like
>> viewfinder enclosure, so you use it like an SLR and bring the camera
>> to your face. Being electronic rather than a "best-attempt
>> compromise" optical finder, it can be 100% accurate. However, the
>> image quality is not as high as the finder on an SLR.

>
> SLR snots such as myself often turn up their noses at these, but I
> really enjoyed the Sony F707's EVF.
>
> The only problem is that you should try before you buy; a lot of the
> EVFs aren't as nice as the Sony's was.
>
> David J. Littleboy
> Tokyo, Japan


David,

The best EVF I've ever seen was that on the Minolta A2 - full VGA
resolution, unfortunately advertised as 900,000+ pixels. No it's just
over 300,000 pixels! Nevertheless, I wish all were as good as that. It
was a pleasure to use, and a great pity that more manufacturers didn't
take it up.

Completely agree on try before you buy - precisely why I said "look"
rather than "consider"!

David


 
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Colin Brace
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      04-03-2006
> I hope you have already discovered combining images automatically
> for a wider view, and using programs such as Paint Shop Pro for
> "perspective correction".


I've stitched images together using gimp (I am on linux), but I haven't
figured out how to do perspective correction, which is defintely a
problem with the geometrical shapes of buildings and the like. If
anyone here knows how to do this with gimp, I'd be interested in
hearing about it..

--
Colin Brace
Amsterdam

 
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m Ransley
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      04-03-2006
I also have the W5 and in 3000+ shots have used the viewfinder maybe 5
times, I use it for accurate exposure and composition . I wont buy a
Dslr till there is Lcd preview.

 
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David J Taylor
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      04-03-2006
m Ransley wrote:
> I also have the W5 and in 3000+ shots have used the viewfinder maybe 5
> times, I use it for accurate exposure and composition . I wont buy a
> Dslr till there is Lcd preview.


There already are DSLRs with LCD preview:

http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/olympuse330/

http://www.dpreview.com/news/0602/06...cl1handson.asp

David


 
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m Ransley
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      04-03-2006
I am hoping to wait out a Canon, since I have alot of Canon glass., The
Panasonic isnt out yet but is worth a consideration if reviews rate it
extremely high, but their present sensors dont leave that a sureity. My
lenses and Canon reviews make Canon my first choise.

 
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Daniel Silevitch
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      04-03-2006
On 3 Apr 2006 03:39:11 -0700, Colin Brace <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> I hope you have already discovered combining images automatically
>> for a wider view, and using programs such as Paint Shop Pro for
>> "perspective correction".

>
> I've stitched images together using gimp (I am on linux), but I haven't
> figured out how to do perspective correction, which is defintely a
> problem with the geometrical shapes of buildings and the like. If
> anyone here knows how to do this with gimp, I'd be interested in
> hearing about it..


Get a copy of hugin (hugin.sourceforge.net); it's designed for stitching
multiple frames together, but it can also do all sorts of perspective
corrections on single frames.

-dms

 
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John A. Stovall
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Posts: n/a
 
      04-03-2006
On 3 Apr 2006 01:49:08 -0700, "Colin Brace" <(E-Mail Removed)>
wrote:

>Some months ago, I retired a 35mm Yashica T5 in favor of a Sony DSC W5,
>which takes better pictures and is in many ways a more versatile
>camera. However, in one particular respect, the Yashica was superior to
>the Sony; its optical viewfinder was much better. My number one
>aggravation with the Sony is that its viewfinder is about 25% smaller
>than the actual picture. I like to photograph architecture (see
><flickr.com/photos/cbrace>), and I spend an inordinate amount of effort
>trying to frame the pictures correctly, since normally it is a tight
>fit, and it exasperates me no end that that what I see throught the
>optical viewfinder doesn't match the final image.
>
>At this point, buying a different camera is not an option but just out
>of curiosity: are there digital P&S cameras with better optical
>viewfinders? I for one just can't get used to shooting pictures by
>means of the TFT screen, like I see many people doing.


************************************************** ****

"I have been a witness, and these pictures are
my testimony. The events I have recorded should
not be forgotten and must not be repeated."

-James Nachtwey-
http://www.jamesnachtwey.com/
 
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