What camera for night photos?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Ed, Nov 14, 2003.

  1. Ed

    Ed Guest

    I have a Fuji FinePix 2400 camera that I bought few years back. I am very
    happy with the pictures at daylight. But the pictures taken with flash are
    not that good. I am planning to get a new camera. The camera is used to take
    family photos and I don't usually print the photos. The one that are printed
    ar 5X7 at most. So, I assume 2MP is still good enough for me. I want a
    better camera for flash photos. Which one I should I buy?

    Ed, Nov 14, 2003
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  2. Ed

    Jim Townsend Guest

    Look for a camera that takes an external flash.. One that has a hot shoe or PC
    socket to use a flash. Then add an external flash you can aim or one with the
    ability to swivel.. Getting a flash diffuser is a good idea too.

    If you like Fuji.. The Finepix 602Z can do this.

    The built in flash that comes with most cameras is outright crummy.. This
    includes the ones that come on DSLR's. Most built-in flashes aren't meant to
    illuminate objects over 10 feet away.

    An external flash will be at least 5x brigher and with a swivel head, you'll
    often be able to bounce the light off ceilings and walls for nice soft looking
    subjects with no red-eye.
    Jim Townsend, Nov 14, 2003
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  3. Ed

    RustY© Guest

    Then its a flashgun you need not a new camera !
    RustY©, Nov 14, 2003
  4. Ed

    Ron Hunter Guest

    Unfortunately good night pictures require a large sensor with a high ISO
    rating (800 to 1600) and these seem to be restricted to only the higher
    price cameras like the 10d. I don't know of one that has less than 5
    mp, and a price tag near $1000. You might wait another year.
    Ron Hunter, Nov 14, 2003
  5. Ed

    Brownie Guest

    If you take a lot of flash photographs in very dim conditions then the
    recommendation of a 602zoom is about the worse choice you can make. The
    electronic viewfinder is ok in poor light, but in near dark or dark it is
    impossible to use it because it is backlit. The other problem with the 602
    is that it doesn't focus in low light at all well. It has no AF assist
    light and it's performance is pretty poor in this department. I know as I
    have one and this issue is well documented. Otherwise it is a great camera
    but a little bulky for family parties where a quality point and shoot would
    be better. Adding an external flash may indeed improve the pictures
    particularly if you can bounce the flash or diffuse it but the set up starts
    to get unweildy and looses that quick point and shoot ability you have now.

    If you are talking parties in quite dimly lit rooms, look for a camera that
    has good low light autofocus, red-eye reduction, a focus assist light and
    quite a powerful flash in a quality compact. Having the ability to set the
    flash (high, medium, low) is also useful. I'd suggest if you shoot a lot of
    pictures at parties and the camera is switched on a lot, an optical
    viewfinder is better than an electronic one and something like 4 AA
    batteries or a substantial propriety battery can help. For the price you
    are talking now, a 3 megapixel camera would be worth an upgrade and despite
    all that wish list, won't cost that much. Cameras that fit the bill
    perfectly that I have owned are the Canon G2 and the Casio QV3500.
    Brownie, Nov 14, 2003
  6. Ed

    Ed Guest

    Thanks. You described my intended use of camera right to the point.

    Apparently the 2 cameras you mentioned at then end of your post is not in
    the market anymore. It was very hard to find any of them on the net. I found
    few places that carry G2 but the price is over my limit. I am looking for
    something around $200 or $300 at very most..

    I know I cannot ask for much with this price range but what is my best
    Ed, Nov 15, 2003
  7. Ed

    Brownie Guest

    Ed - glad I could help, I did use the word 'owned' rather than meaning they
    were currently available - sorry. I'm not sure exactly what is out there at
    the moment that would fufil your needs, hence I gave some of the features
    you may look for.

    One of the biggest factors will be do you want to use an additional flash
    (as suggested by one poster) or just stick to the one that comes built into
    the camera. As soon as you include the hot-shoe or a PC socket for the
    flash, the potental camera is generally of a higher specification and price

    The Canon G3 is still available in many stores, which was an updated version
    of the G2. However it has a slightly less powerful flash (the G2 flash was
    very good for a compact camera) just like it's even newer successor the G5
    but most people wouldn't notice and the quality you would have from either
    of these cameras (the G3 is better) will astound you. Both are quite
    expensive (at least here in the UK) and perhaps beyond your needs. On the
    strength of that though, I'd say look in-store at some of the Canon range
    like the Powershot A70 etc. to see how they feel to you.

    Similarly the newer equivelant Casio's (QV4000/5700) also had smaller
    flashes fitted.

    If you go to a site like 'Steve's Digicams' you can see many of the models
    discussed. I'd suggest you also leave a bit of your budget for either a
    good set of 2000 or higher milliamp NiMh batteries as spares or a second
    proprietry battery too as using flash really knocks it out of the batteries.

    Hope that helps you a little bit Ed.
    Brownie, Nov 15, 2003
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