Looking for "small" digital camera

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Sheldon, May 7, 2005.

  1. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    I'm looking for a small digital camera, at least 2mp, with an LCD screen on
    the back, maybe with a 2x or 3x optical zoom, that takes decent photos. I
    already have a DSLR, and don't expect this thing to be comparable, but it
    would be nice to have a camera with me all the time.

    Oh, yeah, I'd love it to be "really" small, pocket size, and if I can get it
    for $150 or less that would be great.

    Any and all suggestions welcome, and if you don't think it's possible to
    find anything like this tell me that, too.


    Sheldon, May 7, 2005
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  2. Sheldon

    Nostrobino Guest

    Just a week or so ago I bought a Nikon Coolpix 4100 for $160 plus $6.80
    shipping from BuyDig.com. I just looked and they seem to have sold out of
    'em (it's a recently discontinued model) but you might still be able to find
    one elsewhere at a similar price.

    Fantastic little camera for the money. It's not quite the smallest camera
    I've got but it's still pretty darn small, very pocketable, 4 megapixels and
    a 3x optical zoom (35-105mm equiv.), uses an SD card and two AA alkalines or
    NiMHs, has an optical viewfinder as well as the LCD monitor. Basically a
    point-and-shoot of course, but it has a surprising number of shooting modes,
    and also an AF assist light. I'm very happy with its image quality. I don't
    think you can do better for an inexpensive pocketable camera if you can
    still find one at anywhere near that price.

    Nostrobino, May 7, 2005
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  3. Sheldon

    Nostrobino Guest

    [ . . . ]
    Oops, my mistake, I bought it from ButterflyPhoto.com and they still list
    them for sale, but the price is now $168 + $6.80 shipping. Still a terrific
    buy IMO.

    Nostrobino, May 7, 2005
  4. Sheldon

    editor Guest

    Pentax Optio S. If it's not "small" enough for you, NOTHING ever will
    be! 3.2 megapixels, 200 "film speed," 35-105 (equiv.) zoom, really
    good LCD screen - a truly capable shirt-pocket-size digicam for "carry
    everywhere" use.

    Save on gas! Shop the http://stores.ebay.com/INTERNET-GUN-SHOW
    editor, May 7, 2005
  5. Sheldon

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Look at the Kodak cx7300, or the 7330. They should be close to your
    Ron Hunter, May 7, 2005
  6. Sheldon

    Markeau Guest

    Check out the search at http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/compare.asp
    .... Under the Format pulldown select Compact or Ultra Compact and go
    from there ...
    Markeau, May 7, 2005
  7. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    Nice camera, right size, but a bit more than I want to spend.
    Sheldon, May 7, 2005
  8. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    Thanks for the site. All the cameras are over my price range, with the
    exception of one, and that one has no optical zoom at all.
    I may be pissing into the wind on this one. eBay?
    Sheldon, May 7, 2005
  9. dave AKA vwdoc1, May 8, 2005
  10. Forgot to mention that the Pentax Optio S was reconditioned.
    My Sony was new.
    dave AKA vwdoc1, May 8, 2005
  11. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    Actually, good prices at Overstock.com
    Sheldon, May 8, 2005
  12. Sheldon

    Stewy Guest

    What is your budget? - for $300 you could get the Nikon Coolpix 3700 or
    the Fuji F440 including a sizeable media card
    Stewy, May 8, 2005
  13. Sheldon

    Nostrobino Guest

    Try eBay and see. But watch out for the shipping charges, which are fair
    with some eBay sellers, horrendous with others.

    I still say the Nikon Coolpix 4100 is probably your best bet in a new
    camera, from one of the better priced online sellers. Since it's been
    replaced by the 4600 (which actually appears to be inferior in features
    though it's higher priced), I doubt the 4100 will be available brand new for
    very long.

    I also have the Minolta DiMAGE Xt and Xg cameras and the Pentax Optio S4i,
    all of which are somewhat more compact (flatter) than the Coolpix 4100, and
    I love 'em all. But I doubt you'll find any of those *new* for under $170
    like that 4100. Used or "reconditioned" on eBay is a possibility, of course.
    Used could be a good idea depending on condition and reliability of the
    seller. "Reconditioned" I'd be inclined to avoid, unless from a very
    reliable seller like Cameta who does sometimes sell such cameras on eBay.

    Nostrobino, May 8, 2005
  14. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    I'm aware of shipping charges on eBay. :-(
    I've seen it heavily discounted
    What's your opinion of the Optio? It certainly is small, and I've found it
    reconditioned on overstock.com. I'm not afraid of reconditioned stuff.
    Yes, I've seen some pretty shoddy reconditioning, but they do come with a
    factory warranty, and I've got a few reconditioned devices that have been
    great, and still are. I figure if there was something inherently wrong with
    it it's fixed now.
    Sheldon, May 9, 2005
  15. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    Trying to keep it around $150. Remember, I already have a DSLR with a
    gaggle of lenses, so I'm looking for a decent toy, more or less.
    Sheldon, May 9, 2005
  16. Sheldon

    Nostrobino Guest

    :-( is right. But some are very fair. The worst offenders seem to be a few
    who sell reconditioned cameras.

    Yep, thus my recommendation. I like buying digital camera models after
    they've been discontinued, when they are often available at extremely
    attractive prices.

    I love it. It's the smallest camera I own and works great, very nice image
    quality and loads of shooting modes, some of which are of doubtful use but
    others are nice to have. For example there's a 3D mode. One reviewer
    dismissed that as a gimmick, but I happen to have a long interest in stereo
    photography and it's actually the chief reason I bought the S4i. It works
    well enough that I later bought an Optio 750Z which has the same feature,
    but is a larger and generally more capable camera.

    The S4i has most of the usual shortcomings of ultracompact point-and-shoots.
    The LCD monitor is larger than most other ultracompacts and is
    anti-reflection coated, but still hard to see in certain angles of direct
    sunlight. It provides plenty of information. It will show aperture and
    shutter speed (though you have no direct control over these it's still nice
    to know what the camera is doing), which none of my other ultracompacts will
    do. There's even a real-time histogram if you want it. The optical
    viewfinder shows only 80% or so of the actual image area, like virtually all
    other compact cameras' viewfinders. There are the usual controls for white
    balance, exposure compensation, flash mode etc.

    Maybe so. If you can get a good S4i or S5i at a good price, I think you'll
    be very pleased with it. As you say, it certainly is small. It's about as
    small as a camera can get and not have your fingers get in each others' way,
    I believe. I bought a little $4 leather card case in Wal-Mart which fits
    like it was made for the camera. My comments above are regarding my S4i,
    obviously. I'm not familiar with the earlier Optio S models and don't know
    offhand what the differences are.

    Nostrobino, May 9, 2005
  17. Sheldon

    Sheldon Guest

    Thanks for the help. I just ordered a refurbished earlier model Optio
    (figure if there's a problem with em this one is fixed) at a good price.
    I'll play with it and see how much I use it. If it gets a lot of use I may
    throw it on eBay and get a better model. It it gets no use I'll throw it on
    eBay. Like I said, I've already got a D70 so this is more of a "toy" for
    me. But, if I can also get decent photos out of it I think it will be fun
    to have. Missed a photo op yesterday and don't want that to happen again,
    and for a second camera 4mp should be good enough.

    By the way, most of these models on eBay get bid up to around the same
    prices you can get anywhere, or more, at about $20 shipping instead of the
    $5 everybody else charges.
    Sheldon, May 12, 2005
  18. Sheldon

    Nostrobino Guest

    Sure. Four megapixels is plenty for sharp 8 x 10s or letter-sized prints at
    the very least. Good luck with the Optio when you get it.

    That depends. As I mentioned earlier, some eBay sellers are very fair on
    shipping charges, others are too high and the worst ($20 or thereabouts)
    seem to be mostly those selling "reconditioned" cameras. As to whether they
    get bid up to the same price as from regular sellers, some do and some
    don't. It's possible to get very good deals on eBay but it's somewhat
    unpredictable. Mostly I buy only new stuff on eBay (sometimes used software,
    when it doesn't matter if it's new or not), and for most of the things I buy
    the same or similar sellers are selling identical stuff for some time, so
    there's no reason to chase them pricewise. If I don't get what I want at the
    price I want, I let it go and bid on the next one, and so on. I have gotten
    very good prices (including shipping) on brand-new 35mm cameras on eBay in
    the past, much better than I could have gotten from other dealers online or
    anywhere. I have not had occasion to buy any digital cameras there so far.

    Nostrobino, May 12, 2005
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