Pocket sized with SLR features

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by heather_4816, Jan 7, 2007.

  1. heather_4816

    heather_4816 Guest

    I'm looking for ideas.

    I do a lot of photography, mostly just hobby stuff for myself. I am
    still pretty attached to my 35mm SLR. However, travel photography is my
    ultimate favorite and I am *sick* to death of lugging my SLR and lenses
    accross the world!!

    I am looking for a digital camera that is pocket sized, but has as many
    features of a SLR as possible. I know I will be making some sacrifices,
    but I'd like to downsize the "equipment" factor on my upcoming trip to
    West Africa.

    I don't care too much about telephoto, Macro is more important to me.

    I'm overwhelmed by all the brands/models out there. So far I've come
    accross the Canon Powershot G7 which looks promising.

    I appreciate any info/ideas you have

    heather_4816, Jan 7, 2007
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  2. I somehow think I'd prefer a tele lens over macro for photographing
    lions, but the choice is yours.
    The Panasonic Lumix series cameras are often held in good regard,
    although I don't have one myself.
    =?iso-8859-1?Q?M=E5ns_Rullg=E5rd?=, Jan 7, 2007
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  3. heather_4816

    Ken Lucke Guest

    I can give you my shipping address and relieve you of them, then :^).

    You know, personally, I'd want to INCREASE my equipment factor for such
    a trip. Including rentals of what I don't own but am likely to need.
    Downsizing only guarantees that you WILL miss some of the shots that
    you will later regret not having the opprotunity to take. You are
    probably not going to be wandering over the savanna on foot, are you?
    But think of the detail on the teeth and tongue you'd record for
    posthumous posterity!
    You need only reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a
    reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating
    the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for
    -- Charles A. Beard
    Ken Lucke, Jan 7, 2007
  4. heather_4816

    hs4816 Guest

    I'm planning to be in Morocco, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Togo, Benin, and
    Mali. From my reading so far, I shouldn't be expecting to see any of
    the big 5, and we won't be on Safari. I like to travel to villages and
    meet the people, etc. I'll probably do a trek or 2 and weight is a
    factor for me (so is changing lenses in the middle of a jungle).

    I agree you miss shots when you don't have all the equipment, but
    sometimes I miss shots when I do have all my gear... so I want to try
    something different for this trip.

    Thanks again!!
    hs4816, Jan 7, 2007
  5. heather_4816

    Alfred Molon Guest

    The problem is not just the camera, but the backup system around the
    camera, especially when the trip is so extensive. It sounds like you'll
    be travelling for at least a couple of months in some undeveloped
    places, so you might not be able to find a place to burn a CD or DVD.

    One option would be to carry enough memory cards with you, but that
    depends on how much you photograph (I'm able to shoot 8 GByte of stuff
    in one day for instance). Or using a portable HDD device, but you'll
    need to back up that, as you might lose all your images should the HDD
    crash. Personally I travel with a subnotebook, a few external USB HDDs
    and a DVD burner.

    As for the camera, there is the Olympus E400 which is very compact (the
    smallest and most lightweight DSLR currently on the market - even more
    compact than some P&S). You'd have a real DSLR in a very compact and
    lightweight package (you wouldn't have to carry many lenses with you).
    Alfred Molon, Jan 7, 2007
  6. heather_4816

    Guest Guest

    You might also want to consider the Canon A630 or A640 (same sensor
    size as the G7, I believe). Very good macro capabilities (you can get
    down as close as 1/2" in wide-angle mode); the vari-angle LCD is
    surprisingly useful; optical viewfinder; full manual capabilities; 4x
    zoom; and they use AA batteries.

    I'm with you in not wanting to lug a DSLR. In my case, I'm simply
    too old for that. I had an A75 (3.2 mp) on my last trip and it did
    everything I wanted, even including some shots that made stunning 8 x
    10s. The A630/A640 cameras, with 8/10 megapixels, should be even better
    and they're basically the same pocketable size.

    -- Ron
    Guest, Jan 7, 2007
  7. heather_4816

    Matt Ion Guest

    Go to www.dpreview.com. In the menu on the left, go to "Buying Guide" ->
    "Features Search". You can select which features are or aren't important to
    you, and get a pretty comprehensive listing of cameras that provide them.

    Happy hunting!
    Matt Ion, Jan 7, 2007
  8. heather_4816

    Matt Ion Guest

    ROFL! Best line of the week!
    Matt Ion, Jan 7, 2007
  9. heather_4816

    Ron Hunter Guest

    While the G7 isn't exactly the smallest camera in the class, it has
    great features. It has a good 'lineage', and great specs. Users here
    seem pretty happy with it.
    Ron Hunter, Jan 7, 2007
  10. Be aware much of what you use with your slr is not quite applicable to such
    a small sized sensor P&S camera. Specifically, aperture control.
    Ed Ruf (REPLY to E-MAIL IN SIG!), Jan 7, 2007
  11. heather_4816

    Ron Hunter Guest

    But, remember, he only needs to be able to outrun the other guy with
    him, not the lion. GRIN.
    Ron Hunter, Jan 8, 2007
  12. heather_4816

    Justin C Guest

    Until recently work was using Kodak's first mega-pixel camera for all
    it's photography needs. I was charged with finding a suitable
    replacement. Our photo's are for a product catalogue (600dpi) and
    web-site. Though 1 mega-pixel doesn't sound much it was adequate so
    pixel count wasn't an issue in my search. What was essential was
    external flash, and manual shutter/aperture (to sync with the flash and
    adjust flash expose). As we don't need interchangeable lenses I didn't
    want to go for an SLR, it seemed overkill. The only pocket sized camera
    I could find that was able to support external flash (via hot-shoe) was
    the G7.

    I've spent a lot of time playing with the G7 since we had it and even
    borrowed it over the Christmas holiday. I've had a lot of fun with it
    and taken a lot of pictures. If I was in the market for a camera I'd buy
    one of these. I own a Canon EOS 100/Rebel analogue camera and a lot of
    lenses and all the stuff that goes with it, and, like you, I got fed up
    carrying all that gear. The G7 wasn't available when I bought my camera
    and my camera is no longer available so I won't recommend it. I really
    am in two minds as to whether to carry on with what I have or trade it
    in for a G7.

    One negative for the G7, it doesn't shoot RAW. This won't bother some
    people, but it's a little niggle that means I'm undecided.

    You can also manual focus the G7, marry that to manual exposure and I
    could not perceive a shutter lag when I was using it.

    I think it's a great camera and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it. But
    get a spare battery for your trip - the battery has to go into a charger
    so you can't just unplug and shoot at a moment's notice - using the
    optical viewfinder gives quite boost to the battery life.
    Justin C, Jan 8, 2007
  13. heather_4816

    LurfysMa Guest

    Lions tend to travel in prides. May need to out run one guy for every
    lion in the pride. Take the telephoto lens.

    LurfysMa, Jan 8, 2007
  14. heather_4816

    Frank ess Guest

    I'll recommend the Panasonic Lumix LX1. Almost pocket-size, excellent
    optics, nearly as controllable as a dSLR with
    manual-just-about-everything. Shoots raw. Decent near-macro,
    externally switched aspect ratio (16:9, 4:3, 3:2). Quite a bit of
    noise in images at ordinary ISO, but all-in-all a versatile bit of
    kit. Somewhat like a tiny dSLR with permanently-attached 28-105mm
    zoom. My only strenuous dislikes: No viewfinder (you really need to
    shade that LCD in bright sun): Not being able to switch off the
    Siamese-twin JPEG that comes with raw images.

    Go to flickr.com and search keyword "LX1" to see the kind of images it

    LX2, more recent, is said to be a step backward.
    Frank ess, Jan 8, 2007
  15. heather_4816

    ASAAR Guest

    And that's implying that using a FF DSLR body could be hazardous
    to the photographer's health!

    ASAAR, Jan 8, 2007
  16. heather_4816

    Ron Hunter Guest

    I would use the telephoto (the longer the better), and have it mounted
    on the vehicle... But then I am a very careful person.
    Ron Hunter, Jan 8, 2007
  17. heather_4816

    Ron Hunter Guest

    "Almost pocket sized"? Is that like 'a little pregnant'? Grin.
    Nice camera but ANY camera without an optical viewfinder is going to be
    eliminated from my selection process.
    Ron Hunter, Jan 8, 2007
  18. heather_4816

    Bob Williams Guest

    Have a look at the Panasonic Lumix FZ7
    See: > http://www.steves-digicams.com/2006_reviews/fz7.html
    Bob Williams
    Bob Williams, Jan 8, 2007
  19. heather_4816

    acl Guest

    Unless said FF body has INSANELY SMALL PIXELS, eh?
    acl, Jan 8, 2007
  20. heather_4816

    Frank ess Guest

    Yup: the _body_ is easy-pocket-size; it's that 3/4-inch turret the
    lens collapses into that doesn't quite fit in my most-usual shirt

    Yup 2: but I am getting better at guesstimating frame placement based
    on vestigial clues on the LCD. Fortunately, the 8-7-6 MP available
    allow for moderate cropping.
    Frank ess, Jan 8, 2007
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