I will strongly recommend you look into the Lumix line up... they are as good if not better than some of the more expensive Olympus or Canon models. I'll venture to say that based on actual usage, Lumix p&s cameras are among the best in terms of image quality, stabilization feature, build quality and worry-free ownership..
They recently came up with FX180, which integrates a good camera with hi-def video-taking capability. Here in DP review, I think one of the models they reviewed thoroughly with good results is Lumix TZ5 which features wide-angle shooting capabilities..
Hope this helps..
For an ultracompact list I would add the Canon SD870 and Sony W130. Both have f/2.8 lenses. Which is not to say they are any better than those already on your list. Just more options. If cameras larger than ultracompacts were Ok, that would certainly expand the list more..
For an ultra compact I would look at the SD870 IS. I haven't seen PQ tests between it and the others on your list but they should all be pretty close to the same and it's definitely one of the best ultra compacts available with it's 28mm wide angle zoom and 3" LCD...
Thanks all for the additional suggestions. I will add that to my list to check out..
Kelly, I'm not opposed to non ultra compact. Just thought that they are normally the easier option for total amateurs, but if there are other camera's that's easy to use that you think I should look at, feel free to add. I will admit I don't like super bulky, 'cause about half my trips are backpacking...
Some of the more advanced cameras can be a little intimidating with all their extra buttons. But they all have a fully AUTO mode, so are all equally easy to use, at least as an auto-shooter. The traditional compact size has become slim pickings, lots and lots more ultracompact and SLR-like models to choose from. One compact worth a look for landscapes is the Panasonic LZ10 -.
I features a 30mm wide angle. Plus it has more control options if you should ever want to study photography more deeply. However, it would not necessarily do any better job than those Canons already mentioned. Just another option for fun..
I agree with Noogy about the TZ5.- relatively compact & light weight- 10X zoom- excellent optical image stabilization- helpful 28mm wide angle- high resolution 3" screen- does an excellent job using fully automatic settings- option to make some adjustments, if desired- allows you to focus on your subject - rather than settings- long lasting Li-On battery (always better to have a back-up, anyway).
Much better zoom range than typical 3X zoom, much smaller than those with 15X or 18X zoom..
IMHO it is the most versatile compact camera and well worth the average $280 price..
Try to select a camera retailer with return options. If you don't like it, switch to the next camera on your list. It took me a lot of cameras (over several years) to finally decide on the TZ5..
Let us know which camera you finally choose, and why. Meanwhile, Good luck!.
All the best,JimPhotographers take pictures, not cameras...
Try this site great reviews and great choices..
I have the Panasonic TZ5 and love it. Great for traveling...