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christmas madness!
I have been falling in love with digital photography for the past year, shooting crazy-good shots with my very first digital, the A530, which has been awesome except the limited f/stops (2.6 & 5.6) and shutter speeds create a pocket where I miss a lot of shots if I am on the road..

I decided I needed a step up, so my daughter's bought me an A720 IS, but the day before I was oohing and ahhing over an sx100 IS at the store, and they said, go ahead and trade it in....

So I did, sort of, only I still have it because of Amazon etc etc. long story. Anyway, i've had a couple weeks to test-run the SX100 IS, well, I find I can't get the noise out even at low iso, and the pictures lack the resolution of even my little a530 at base iso (80)..

Since I am such an unschooled amateur, I thought I was nuts, and took both cameras into a camera store yesterday, where the techs put them through their paces and compared the results on the computer. To everyone's amazement, the little camera out-performed the big one all the way up to the outside of the 530s zoom range, which was admittedly much shorter..

Both cameras were both hand-held and stabilized on the same for comparison, and still in all cases the 530 was clearer, and the colors were more appealing. Which was what made me fall in love with the little thing to begin with. And oh! what that camera hasn't survived, in this past year! A real trooper..

So now I am completely lost, and need to decide which camera will get me closest to great on-the-move shots and close enough to wildlife to get some detailed fur and feathers. And if I act fast, I can leverage both new cameras into something less than $500..

Oh! it has to fit in my pocket, or it won't go where I go .

So, is there any help for me, do you think? Or am I just asking an impossible question in a language I don't come close to understanding!.

Mnp..

Comments (10)

Mnp wrote:.

I have been falling in love with digital photography for the pastyear, shooting crazy-good shots with my very first digital, the A530,which has been awesome except the limited f/stops (2.6 & 5.6) andshutter speeds create a pocket where I miss a lot of shots if I am onthe road..

I decided I needed a step up, so my daughter's bought me an A720 IS,but the day before I was oohing and ahhing over an sx100 IS at thestore, and they said, go ahead and trade it in....

So I did, sort of, only I still have it because of Amazon etc etc.long story. Anyway, i've had a couple weeks to test-run the SX100 IS,well, I find I can't get the noise out even at low iso, and thepictures lack the resolution of even my little a530 at base iso (80)..

Since I am such an unschooled amateur, I thought I was nuts, and tookboth cameras into a camera store yesterday, where the techs put themthrough their paces and compared the results on the computer. Toeveryone's amazement, the little camera out-performed the big one allthe way up to the outside of the 530s zoom range, which wasadmittedly much shorter..

Both cameras were both hand-held and stabilized on the same forcomparison, and still in all cases the 530 was clearer, and thecolors were more appealing. Which was what made me fall in love withthe little thing to begin with. And oh! what that camera hasn'tsurvived, in this past year! A real trooper..

So now I am completely lost, and need to decide which camera will getme closest to great on-the-move shots and close enough to wildlife toget some detailed fur and feathers. And if I act fast, I can leverageboth new cameras into something less than $500..

Oh! it has to fit in my pocket, or it won't go where I go .

So, is there any help for me, do you think? Or am I just asking animpossible question in a language I don't come close to understanding!.

Mnp.

$500 is a lot for a compact camera. You're into the entry level DSLR range at that price. I understand you don't want a SLR because of it's size. Why don't you just keep the 530 and sell the other one, or go with the 720? A minimal camera bag or a belt pouch should be considered if your pockets aren't large enough..

I have a A640 and a SLR, my daughter has a A520, and the photo's from the A710 IS look nice if the flash recycle time isn't an issue. They're all nice compacts given the limitations of that form factor...

Comment #1

Are you printing photos?.

Or just looking at them on the computer monitor..

I've found that higher megapixel images look worse on the computer than lower megapixel shots, but look much better when printed..

J. D.Colorful Colorado.

Image control:Zoom outZoom 100%Zoom inExpand AllOpen in new window.

Remember.always keep the box and everything that came in it!..

Comment #2

Wow, you're right! so far i've viewed them only on the monitor - so now I am getting my printer rigged up and am going to check it out, because it really is print output I am looking for, as an end-result anyway, as I enjoy compiling and distributing my best pictures as gifts..

I am so glad you mentioned that! i'll post results as soon as they come in....

Mnp..

Comment #3

Mnp wrote:.

...so, is there any help for me, do you think? Or am I just asking animpossible question in a language I don't come close to understanding!.

Yes..

There is a basic rule you should know about: To get the best IQ, buy the biggest piece of Silicon you can afford and one that is divided into as few pixels as you can put up with..

Terms:.

IQ = Image QualitySilicon = The Sensor.

In your case, since you are a wuss and insist on a tiny pocket cam, you are not going to get a very big piece of Silicon in your pocket. Still, get the biggest you can afford (which today is about 1/1.7" or 1/1.6"). And buy last years camera that has fewer pixels! 6 MP on a 1/1.7" sensor is about the most I would get..

Charlie DavisNikon 5700, Sony R1, Nikon D300HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #4

Chuxter wrote:.

In your case, since you are a wuss and insist on a tiny pocket cam,you are not going to get a very big piece of Silicon in your pocket..

No comment..

Comment #5

So, actually then, my little a530 with it's 5 mp distributed on a 1/2.5 " sensor is not such a bad ratio? The pictures are amazingly crisp, but I can't pull much in on the telephoto, and the large gap between the f-stops gobbles lots of pictures I wish I had..

But I love the maneuverability of always having a camera in my hand. I get the most amazing shots because I have it ready all the time, and if I need both hands, I can slip it right in my pants-pocket..

And I really don't consider myself a true photographer I just love taking pictures! And then I love messing with them on photoshop, so I don't even call them photographs, more like photo-renderings, or photo-paintings, if I tweak 'em hard enough. But I don't pretend to be a real photographer, who has actually studied and dedicated many hours perfecting a craft!.

But who knows? There may be hope for me yet!.

Mnp..

Comment #6

Mnp wrote:.

So, actually then, my little a530 with it's 5 mp distributed on a1/2.5 " sensor is not such a bad ratio?.

Don't worry about specs or what your neighbor has. A 5 or 6 MP camera can make very nice 8x12" prints or web displays. A larger sensor such as a 1/1.7 is better in low light. A SLR is better yet. It's all a tradeoff of performance, size, and cost..

If the 530 gives you the photo's you want stick with it. If one day you find it limiting your photographic ability look for an upgrade..

More megapixels are not the be and end all of a happy photo, you are..

Take photo's you enjoy and be happy...

Comment #7

Mnp wrote:.

So, actually then, my little a530 with it's 5 mp distributed on a1/2.5 " sensor is not such a bad ratio? The pictures are amazinglycrisp, but I can't pull much in on the telephoto, and the large gapbetween the f-stops gobbles lots of pictures I wish I had..

5 MP @ 1/2.5" has smaller photosties than 6 MP @ 1/1.7". Do the math?.

But, YES, it's not too bad. You were wanting to "upgrade"?.

But I love the maneuverability of always having a camera in my hand.I get the most amazing shots because I have it ready all the time,and if I need both hands, I can slip it right in my pants-pocket..

Bigger cams normally have a neck strap....

And I really don't consider myself a true photographer I just lovetaking pictures! And then I love messing with them on photoshop, so idon't even call them photographs, more like photo-renderings, orphoto-paintings, if I tweak 'em hard enough. But I don't pretend tobe a real photographer, who has actually studied and dedicated manyhours perfecting a craft!.

Would it be correct to call you a "photo artist"?.

But who knows? There may be hope for me yet!.

There are really only three things you really need to be concerned about: The Lens, the physical size of the Sensor, and the Fit (with your hands). My point is that it's almost impossible to get these 3 in a small, cheap camera..

The things that are advertised on the box are NOT the important things. Putting more pixels in a camera is cheap...filtering out the inevitable noise is cheap...increasing the zoom range (if IQ is not an issue) is cheap...features are cheap..

I hope my "wuss" comment didn't bother you. It was just a friendly poke....

Charlie DavisNikon 5700, Sony R1, Nikon D300HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #8

No chuxter, I took that in fun. I don't consider myself a real photographer anyway, like I said..

But I am curious, though, is there even a point n shoot that has a larger sensor than the 1/2.5? I look at the charts and the sensor sizes come in different formats, so I haven't a clue how to compare them without exchanging my brain for one that does math!.

And at my age, I am not sure I can find a good used one....

So now I am wondering about stepping up to the dSLR, maybe a rebelc xti? But I know so little about lenses and all the technical stuff sounds like it would take years to get it to sink in where it makes sense..

Do you have any suggestions?.

Mnp..

Comment #9

Mnp wrote:.

No chuxter, I took that in fun. I don't consider myself a realphotographer anyway, like I said..

But I am curious, though, is there even a point n shoot that has alarger sensor than the 1/2.5?.

Yes, there are several sizes bigger than that. The biggest seems to be 1/1.65". In the recent past, there were 2/3" cameras...but they have gone away. .

I look at the charts and the sensorsizes come in different formats, so I haven't a clue how to comparethem without exchanging my brain for one that does math!.

Look up in the upper left corner of your screen...click on the "Learn/Glossary" link...then click on "Camera System"...then on "Sensor Sizes"...Vincent will teach you everything he knows..

And at my age, I am not sure I can find a good used one....

I too am of the "old-timers disease" age. .

So now I am wondering about stepping up to the dSLR, maybe a rebelcxti? But I know so little about lenses and all the technical stuffsounds like it would take years to get it to sink in where it makessense..

That is a good approach. If you don't use it, you loose it! Canon is the perfect camera for people with compromised math skills. .

I'm a Nikon guy who can still divide 1 by 2.5...just barely... .

Do you have any suggestions?.

1. Get the biggest piece of Silicon you can afford and one that has as few pixels as you can put up with..

2. Get a camera that feels good in your hands ( the XTi probably won't!)..

3. Spend more on lenses than the body..

4. Get Photoshop Elements and learn to do the OTHER half of photography. There is NOTHING you can buy for $50 that will come close to PSE for improving your pix!.

5. Get a web site...post your pix for others to see....

Charlie DavisNikon 5700, Sony R1, Nikon D300HomePage: http://www.1derful.infoBridge Blog: http://www.here-ugo.com/BridgeBlog/..

Comment #10

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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