You'll probably want the hardiness features of the 770 if you're planning on taking it snowboarding. The Sony H3 (and it's cousins the Panasonic TZ3 and the Canon SX-100) all have much better feature sets, but they are larger, have protruding lenses, and are not nearly as robust as the 770. You'll be able to shoot with the 770 down to around 14 degrees F without any issue. I wouldn't expect the other cameras to work well or for long at anything close to that level of cold...
How will the 770 SW perform for my needs?..
But how nice of pictures will the 770 take? I know not SLR quality, but will it get the job done for personal use and occasional printing? I have a 10% off card for BB, and it expires tomorrow, so I may go get it now an see how it does, and if it doesn't suite my needs, return it. What do you think?..
Sorry to disappoint you, but you better keep the money in your pocket. Action and P&S just don't mix well. You may try, but you will get frustrated. Certainly indoors action will be proving near impossible. There are recent threads who deal with this. Just take a look first...
I realize and know I am not going to get SLR quality images, but carrying a SLR on the mountain is not an option for me... So with that said I am looking for the "next best thing" for my needs...
The autofocus on P&S cameras is slow, the SW series included. And, there's the inevitable shutter lag..
The bottom line is the P&S cameras don't do action well. But, hey, you can make cool videos with it, even underwater. My wife does it with our nieces and nephews in the pool all the time...
I realize and know I am not going to get SLR quality images, butcarrying a SLR on the mountain is not an option for me... So withthat said I am looking for the "next best thing" for my needs..
As debruyn said, it won't work. DSLRs are the only camera that can take action shots like this..
The 'next best thing' in this area will be blurred, out of focus shots, because the autofocus won't work fast enough, and not enough light will get in the camera anyway at a shutter speed fast enough to freeze sports motion (maybe 1/500th sec or faster) because P&S lenses don't have a wide enough aperture..
Use a camcorder instead, the results will be better..
Action shots with a P & S can be done! You will need to purchase a camera with an optical viewfinder and not an electronic viewfinder. Use the optical viewfinder and NOT the LCD screen for action shots, coupled with the following: -.
Take advantage of the best possible light and if the conditions are simply not in your favour, then abandon that type of shoot until another day..
Step 1: Most P & S/Bridge cameras are reasonably capable of decent image quality at ISO200, so use it. If your camera model is one of the very few where the reviews have quoted a useable ISO400+ then take advantage of this..
Step 2: Your camera has probably got the option to shoot in continuous mode. Great! Because of the inherent shutter-lag between pressing the button and recording the image, anticipation is a skill that takes a lot of practice to develop. Improve your chances of catching that precious moment with sequential shooting enabled on your camera..
Step3: Manual Focus: Sporting action can most likely be captured at a manual focus setting of infinity (symbol )..
Use this feature to instantly capture the shot and overcome the problematic hunting to lock focus scenario. No wasted valuable millisecond moments with the half press before shoot routine..
Step 4: Now this is going to sound crazy! Im suggesting that you choose Aperture Priority and select the widest aperture your camera is capable of delivering. (F2.8 or thereabouts would be great.).
My reasoning is that the widest aperture will automatically select the fastest shutter speed to give you good and correct exposure levels under the prevailing conditions..
So what if the lighting is so good that your images are actually turning out over-exposed when using Aperture Priority? Neat; just turn the ISO down a notch. In doing so the reduced image noise will be in your favour..
Step 4: I mentioned at the beginning, forget the LCD. The thing will blank out as soon as you squeeze the shutter, making tracking/panning your subject nigh impossible. Use the humble little viewfinder to follow the action. You will capture the shot every time..
Finally. If the model you select has a custom mode, then you can save these listed settings for the next time you go out on an action shoot!My camera is the Canon A640, and it served me very well here: -http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/77154371/originalhttp://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/82979165/originalhttp://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/82979168http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/82979173http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/82979186http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/83030083http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/83030077http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/83030109http://www.pbase.com/filibuster/image/83030113filibuster (Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, UK).
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Well, thanks for your answers. Again, not looking for SLR quality and these are not high speed shots, relatively slow speed action. With that said I think I am going to go with the Sony H3. It seems to have some nice features and will be able to handle what I want to do with it. Seems to be a decent in between camera and has good reviews on this site...
Please tell us or better show us the results. Could help others to do the same...
You will capture the shot every time..
Amazing. I have a Nikon D1H and plenty of experience, and I still can't capture the shot every time...