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    $699.88 $689.95 list()
    1. Nikon Coolpix 5700 5MP Digital
    list($799.95)
    2. Sony DSCF717 5MP Digital Still
    3. Nikon Coolpix 4500 4MP Digital
    $799.95 list($950.99)
    4. Leica Digilux 1 3.9MP Digital
    5. Nikon Coolpix 4300 4MP Digital
    6. Nikon Coolpix 995 3.2MP Digital
    $369.99 list($379.99)
    7. Canon PowerShot S200 2MP Digital
    list($2,249.99)
    8. Olympus E-20 5MP Digital Camera
    list($499.99)
    9. Minolta Dimage F100 4MP Digital
    list($699.99)
    10. Canon PowerShot G2 4MP Digital
    $333.99 list($449.99)
    11. Olympus Camedia D-550 3MP Digital
    list($599.99)
    12. Canon PowerShot S110 2MP Digital
    list($399.99)
    13. Canon PowerShot A40 2MP Digital
    list($1,099.99)
    14. Sony DSCF707 Cyber-shot 5MP Digital
    15. Nikon Coolpix 5000 5MP Digital
    $429.99 list($449.99)
    16. Canon PowerShot S330 2MP Digital
    17. Nikon Coolpix 2500 2MP Digital
    $249.99 list($599.99)
    18. Olympus Camedia C-4000 4MP Digital
    list($599.99)
    19. Sony DSCP9 Cyber-shot 4MP Digital
    list($349.99)
    20. Sony DSCP51 Cyber-shot 2MP Digital

    1. Nikon Coolpix 5700 5MP Digital Camera w/ 8x Optical Zoom
    by Nikon

    our price: $699.88
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000069092
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Nikon
    Sales Rank: 135
    Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Review

    Building on the success of the amateur range of Coolpix cameras, Nikon has introduced the Coolpix 5700 in an attempt to bridge the gap between the amateur and professional markets. This time around Nikon has gone for a semicompact feel, combining an almost palm-size unit with a powerful features one would expect to find on a high-specification midrange digital camera.

    swing-out screen of the CoolPix 5700
    The swiveling, swing-out screen on the Coolpix 5700 makes it easier to frame self-portrait, overhead, and floor-level shots.
    The Coolpix 5700 comes equipped with an automatic pop-up flash, plus a hot-shoe for additional flash units. The bundled NikonView 5 browser software makes it simple to download, organize, and print images. The package includes a lens cap, camera strap, 16 MB CompactFlash card, AV cable, USB cable, rechargeable lithium-ion battery, and battery charger. It is compatible with CompactFlash memory cards (Type I or II), as well as IBM Microdrives.

    The 5700 allows the use of the viewfinder or the LCD monitor (which rotates through 180 degrees after it's opened out) for framing a picture, providing full freedom of movement and allowing you to capture a picture at any angle--no matter how obtuse. Zoom capability has been increased on the 5700, and the camera features an impressive 8x optical zoom, the results from which are good at all levels and distances. Supporting a maximum resolution of 2,560 x 1,920 (4.91 megapixels), an ISO range of 100 to 800, and a top shutter speed of 1/4,000, this camera is definitely a good all-rounder, providing you with great flexibility under different conditions.

    The 5700 performs admirably, producing results way above expectation. Color balance is good, and the overall results are of a very high quality. We did have a middling complaint about its size, which actually feels a bit on the small size. With an extra couple of centimeters added to the bodywork, the 5700 would have felt much easier to handle and control in everyday usage. The position of the camera strap attachment also seems awkward, being as it is located on the upper right quadrant of the lens housing, making it sometimes difficult to gain a good grip when in use.

    These criticisms aside, the Coolpix 5700 is bound to be another sure-fire hit for Nikon, balancing the huge 5-megapixel image size against a competitive pricepoint. For those not yet ready to move up to the professional level of 35mm digital SLRs such as the Nikon D100, the Coolpix 5700 proves to be a worthy alternative. --Elly Russell

    Pros:

    • Palm-sized 5-megapixel camera with a powerful feature set
    • Includes sizeable 16 MB memory card--can accept IBM Microdrives
    • 8x optical zoom

    Cons:

    • Could be slightly larger for easier handling
    ... Read more

    Features

    • 5.0 megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 and beyond
    • 8x optical zoom and 4 x digital zoom for 32x total; provides an equivalent zoom range of 35mm-280mm in 35mm photography
    • Includes 16 MB CompactFlash card; MicroDrive compatible
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses 1 rechargeable Li-ion EN-EL1 battery (included)

    Reviews (93)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Nikon 5700, first 1000 pictures
    I have owned this camera for 6 months and find its picture quality superb. The ability to preprogram for certain functions such as cloudy lighting, movie mode, and a third incandescent light ( you can program many other features easily yourself) all easily accessible through the turn of a dial, are wonderful to have. Accessing the macro function is also readily accessible. I mad 700 pictures in the Galapagos islands, and having 5 mega pixels to crop and enlarge to make great 8X10 pictures that are really wonderful. The movie function with sound is much better than my Nikon 880. the 8X zoom functioned well. Comparing my photos with those of my fellow travelers, I think the colors are more saturated and clearer.

    Reading the instruction manual is important to use all the features of this camera. Battery life is shorter than I would like. Focusing when there is not much light and at times for close-ups is slow. Since I had read about this from others, I was prepared and accepted it. I have not tried manual focusing yet. Taking pictures of fast moving objects is possible, but difficult, as with most non-professional digital cameras. I enthusiastically recommend this camera.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Color Print Film is Dead
    The 8x zoom and 5 megapixels finally lured me from film about 6 months ago. I am a nature/landscape photographer using medium and large format, and gave up my 35mm equipment a few years ago. I just came back from a month long trip to the Antarctic, and the prints I've made from the Nikon are sharp,in focus, and colorful. Plusses: very good lens, great zoom, excellent meter compensation for different light levels (think ice); good color balance; good beginner photo software;a heckuva lot lighter than a view camera. Minuses: shutter lag is annoying for action shots; forget the digital zoom; automatic preview gets in the way of repeated shots (can be overridden); buy an extra battery. Overall: This is a great little camera with the right mix of automatic features for the beginner, but with plenty of options to appeal to the more advanced (and particular) photographer. Put it on a tripod and it's awesome. Well worth the price premium over lesser offerings.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I love this camera to death
    This is my second digital camera and it is the best. My mom has the 35mm Nikon and she loves it. Nikon is the best name in photagraphy and it shows. I just printed out my first photos and i am so impressed with the quality. I will never buy an other brand of cameras.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Camera
    As a novice shutterbug, a simple point & shoot digital was fine at first, but as I gained confidence, and became a little more serious, I found that I had quickly outgrown my Cannon A40. The Nikon 5700 seemed to be exactly what I needed, so I purchased one. To say I love the camera, would be an understatement! I'm still learning how to do what I want to, but being completely self-taught as far as photography, I understand there will be a learning curve. The features are supurb, without being overwhelming. While I'm sure the professional would consider it "not enough"... it more than suits my needs as my "hobby" grows. Perhaps one day, I'll want/need/be ready for a high end camera, but for under 1K, this one will definately help me develop my skills for quite some time!

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Best for the Price!
    After reading these reviews I am starting to wonder if we are even discussing the same camera; people either love it or hate it. I am of the former persuasion: I really love this camera. No, it's not perfect, but all in all it is the best digital non-SLR machine I've ever used. First I'll discuss the things I'm not happy with; then I'll cover the features of which I am. After that section I'll address some of the complaints that I've read in some of the other reviews.

    Let's get started:

    What don't I like? I do wish the buttons on the side of the barrel were moved as they are a bit too easy to push by mistake, though once you get used to their location that sort of goes away. I also wish the tripod mount was directly in-line with the lens, not in the middle of the bottom of the case (though to be fair, that's the way it is with most cameras).

    Nikon refers to the included 16 MB Compact Flash card (think of it as your digital film, if you aren't familiar with the digital camera world) as a "starter card"; and that unfortunately is true. 16 MB only holds 12 pics at 5 megapixels.. For the price of this instrument I strongly feel Nikon could include a larger capacity card; 64 MB or higher would be ideal but I'd settle for 32. Finally, it would be nice if the camera would accept other forms of media in addition to the compact flash or micro drive. However, this final observation isn't really a major complaint. It's more like a wish.

    The things I love

    Picture quality is first rate! The color and clarity of the pics are superb, as is the tolerance of slight hand shake. I've taken quite a few snaps where I've known I moved my hand a little at the last moment, and the pics came out razor sharp (not so with other cams). It has auto bracketing (it will take a series of shots that vary between a range you select for white balance/exposure, adjusting slightly between shots, and display the results with the data, allowing you to choose which is the most satisfying), best shot selector (you hold the shutter release button down and the 5700 takes a series of pics-up to 10-and saves the best focused to the card), image sharpening, noise reduction, and about a million other settings. It also allows you to save up to three sets of options or settings as "user settings", so you can recall the settings with just one menu choice, instead of resetting everything again.

    One of my favorite features is the macro mode. You can take sharp amazing snaps up to 3 cm or 0.8". If any of you are interested in seeing a sample, send me an email.

    The printed user guide is good; not great, but good. I haven't seen any that were better, and quite a few that were worse. You could buy a third party guide to the 5700, and they are usually worth the price, as they give you tips and lessons that the manual doesn't include. Also, the Nikon web site has a multimedia manual/lesson feature for the 5700, and it is a very good overview and covers the basics well. This is provided free of charge.

    The case is metal, which makes it feel substantial and allows the quality of the build to come through. I don't feel that it is too small, in fact, it feels pretty much just right and I am rather ham-handed. I also love the fact the camera can save in the RAW format for use in programs such as Photoshop CS. Working with RAW images really opens the field of creativity.

    Complaints Others Have Expressed
    The most common seems to be the auto-focus at low light. I've not had any trouble at all with this feature. I've taken pics in pretty dim areas and the AF worked fine. I wonder if the folks who had problems had the selected the correct settings; a read of the manual could solve the apparent problems. In addition, you can turn the auto-focus off and use the manual (focus)

    I've also read some have found the buttons confusing. Now here I feel I must get on my soapbox. "Prosumer" level cameras are called such and cost the amount they do because of the quality of the images as well as the user controlled settings/features/options. If you are going to spend the kind of cash these machines cost, then it only makes sense to devote some time to learning how everything works. Any camera at this level is similar, there are just too many options to be able to make everything appear when/where every single user expects them to.

    I've taught enough people to know that some folks become very frustrated very quickly no matter what the subject. If this is you then I suggest you avoid the Coolpix 5700 or any of the other cameras at this level; you'll just drive yourself nuts. There are a number of good quality point and shoot models in the market and these will be a much better match. If you are one of the folks who enjoys learning new things and the challenge of such, then these types of cameras are great. In the case of the 5700 I found the menus quite intuitive; however, you do have to read the manual to get an overview of how the camera works.

    Some people also complained about the battery life. I've not experienced any problems. In fact, I own dig cams from Kodak, Olympus, Pentax and Canon, and all operate about the same as the 5700. ... Read more


    2. Sony DSCF717 5MP Digital Still Camera w/ 5x Optical Zoom
    by Sony
    list price: $799.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006JU62
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Sony
    Sales Rank: 653
    Average Customer Review: 4.69 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Review

    It takes two hands to hold Sony's new DSC-F717, which you'll need to use all the many features packed into this digital camera. The F717 captures images at up to 5.2-megapixel resolution--2,560 by 1,920 pixels--which allows for prints of 11 by 14 inches or even greater.

    Images are crisp, colorful, and deep with detail. With USB 2.0 support, transfers to the PC zipped by and can be set to dispatch automatically. The large, autofocus Carl Zeiss lens zooms optically at 5x, with another 2x in digital mode. Atop the lens, the automatic flash pops open when needed. It also performs preflash metering and corrects the amount of light sent to create shots with the best possible exposure.

    This aids the NightFraming mode, which incorporates the camera's NightShot infrared technology, and can help with taking optimal shots in low-light or no-light situations. If you've never used an infrared viewer before, you'll be impressed by the additional photo opportunities it provides, like snapping shots of teenagers stealing your jack-o'-lanterns and catching them orange-handed.

    NightShot can also be used with the camera's movie-capturing mode. The audiovisual movies can be played back full screen with the HQX mode; we played our movie at 1,280 x 1,024 and could only find minor pixilation around the edges.

    Video size is limited only by the capacity of the Sony Memory Stick inside the camera. The F717 ships with a 32 MB stick, so an upgrade to a larger size is recommended. It comes with a shoulder strap, but we also recommend buying a case to protect your investment. Not a camera for beginners, the F717 does everything you'd expect from a high-end digital camera. --J. Curtis

    Pros:

    • 5-megapixel resolution with 5x optical zoom
    • NightShot infrared mode is quite handy
    • Multiple modes, including movies with audio

    Cons:

    • Not compact
    ... Read more

    Features

    • 5-megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for exceptional prints at 11 x 14 inches and beyond
    • Carl Zeiss autofocus lens with 5x optical/2x digital (10x total) zoom
    • Included 32 MB Memory Stick holds 23 images at default settings
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery (included)

    Reviews (54)

    4-0 out of 5 stars One of the Best Prosumer Digitals On the Market
    With the Sony 828 coming out in January, the 717 may soon be a relic. But at this time it is hands down the finest digital camera in the Sony line and strong competitor in the $750-1,000 range.

    I've only given this camera 4 stars primarily because the price is misleading. For all practical purposes you can not operate a camera like this with the small Memory Stick provided by Sony. You'll need to upgrade to at least 128 or preferably 256MB or you'll spend more time downloading files than taking photos. So tack another $100 onto you bill. Also consider a UV filter to protect that protruding (and thus vunerable) lens (add $20).

    PROS
    - overall outstanding image quality
    - best-in class low-light photos (helpful at Xmas!)
    - optional manual controls and hot shoe add flexibility
    - Burst "feature" allows three essentially simultaneous shots.
    - surprisingly quiet
    - decent battery life

    CONS
    - bulky
    - zoom is ergonomically difficult to get used to. Practice before a big event!

    Also check out the Minolta Dimage and the Nikon Coolpix 5700 --- comparable cameras with a lot to offer and have a more traditional SLR feel. I ultimately chose the Sony because reviews showed it outperforming the others in low-light, a situation I find myself in frequently.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A great digital camera
    Pro:
    * Preforms well in low light even without a flash.
    * 5x optical zoom
    * The ability to manually focus
    * Controls easy to navigate
    * Excellent picture quality
    * Special settings such as sepia
    * Three burst mode for action or hard to capture shots (Beware of long write time before you can take pictures again if you are using a high resolution setting)

    * Manual control of white balance allows for color correction
    * The battery life is really good (however if you plan a long day of picture taking an extra battery is essential)
    * Ability to manually set shutter and / or aperture

    Cons:
    * On high resolution can take a while to write to
    * Bulky compared to a lot of other digital cameras (but not so much so when compared to a good 35mm)
    * Memory sticks have historically cost more than other digital cards but I find that prices have come down significantly
    * Sony really should ship this camera with a 128MB memory stick. The 32 it comes with captures only a few pictures at a high resolution.

    Things I would recommend to get along with the camera

    * Extra memory sticks.
    * Memory stick case
    * A UV filter. You don't need to get the one that Sony makes for the camera. Any 58mm-thread filter will work.
    * Tripod
    * Sony's shutter remote
    * A Neoprene camera strap
    * Extra batteries

    This is a great camera and I would recomend it even over the 827.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I LOVE IT
    IM NOT A PHOTOGRAPHER BY NO MEANS. BUT I LIKE TO HAVE A CAMERA AROUND TO TAKE PICTURES WHENEVER I CAN EITHER OF MY BOYS OR BEFORE AND AFTERS OF PROJECTS AT THE HOUSE. I ACTUALLY GOT A CARRYING CASE FOR IT AND ACC. I TAKE IT EVERYWHERE I GO. ALSO GOT A PRINTER TO GO WITH IT. WHAT WONDERFUL PICTURE THAT I CAN TAKE. IMAGINE IF I KNEW ANYTHING ABOUT TAKING A PICTURE WHAT I COULD DO. A FRIEND HAS SAME CAMERA AND HE FEELS THE SAME WAY.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic product
    I did my usual research at amazon, dpreview, etc etc and decided on this one and have used it for almost a year. Even if the 828 is out and this one is kind of a relic, I cannot imagine needing anything more than this in a digcam and want to recommend it specifically because there would be lots of used units at great prices now in the market. What are the best things about it?

    Just read all the issues with the Nikon 5700 (my comparison is mainly with the Nikon, which I have used). The 717 outscores the Nikon in all those areas (excellent autofocus, not clumsy to handle, very fast response time, and simply the best battery - 300 pics without a problem - i charge my battery once a fortnight if even).

    Picture quality is fantastic. I am not a pro, and I do not need anything more than the quality and crispness that this camera offers.

    But the biggest plus, I think, is its great quality in "auto" mode. My friends can simply aim and shoot and get a great result - all of us typically take a lot of pictures at fun times, and aim n shoot quality really matters at those times.

    What else? Excellent flash quality. I also love the way the lens bends up and down - I used it to great effect when shooting a wedding - it gives you angle flexibility that no camera can match. It's also extremely sturdy, and I really love the way it stays in the grip. Lastly, the Carl Zeiss lens is of superb quality and the 5X optical zoom is more than I can ever need.

    Negatives? Maybe a couple. Initially, I found a lot of pics, particularly in bright sunlight, to be either milky or bluish. This can be solved by using the white meter optimally as well as by managing exposure well, and also with filters - I just needed to spend some time with the camera. Also, the camera necessarily needs a U/V filter (not a big deal for $20).

    Like many others I was hesitant to choose a Sony over Nikon and Canon, but clearly in the non-SLR class, Sony is teaching the pro companies a lesson or two.

    Overall, great buy, simply the best in its class - probably barring the 828 which I have not used.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Perfect Christmas Gift
    I have never bought anything high-tech for my software executive husband before I bought this camera. I spent a week on line and reading reviews here and decided this was the right pick. Not only was this the right pick it was a HOME RUN!! This is a great camera. I would recommend the digital photo printer (DPP-EX7) and a real nice Tumi bag to carry the camera in. We have had a blast with this camera. It's great quality and has that "cool factor" as well. We recently took a trip to Walt Disney World and bought the T1 to take instead of this one because this is a bit huge and love both cameras. We are now big Sony fans. I highly recommend this camera. ... Read more


    3. Nikon Coolpix 4500 4MP Digital Camera w/ 4x Optical Zoom
    by Nikon

    Asin: B000069096
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Nikon
    Sales Rank: 2208
    Average Customer Review: 4.22 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Review

    Nikon's Coolpix 4500 offers 4-megapixel resolution in the same swiveling frame as their previous Coolpix 995. The left half of the 4500--which houses the lens and flash--can be twisted around 360 degrees, making it simple to for you take pictures at a variety of angles. It's especially handy for taking self-portraits, as you can see how you look in the 1.5-inch LCD viewfinder.

    A 4-megapixel capability means that you can take pictures at up to 2,272 by 1,704 pixels in size, which can be printed out at 11 by 14 without any loss of quality. Our images duly impressed us, with sharp edges, bright colors, and an incredible amount of detail. Also impressive is the 4500's 4x optical zoom. Higher than most digital cameras, the 4x zoom lets you get close to your subject, with another 4x of digital zoom available after the snap.

    A built-in flash pops up when needed, and the audio recording capability lets you dictate memos to match your pictures. The rechargeable battery provides about two hours of life, although it must be removed from the camera for a recharge.

    Although the 4500 features a broad range of tools for the more advanced digital photographer, it's easy enough for the beginner to use. Its 16 different scene modes--including various portraits and a panorama assist mode--make taking different types of pictures a one-click task.

    Nikon includes only a 16 MB CompactFlash card, but it supports Type I and II cards, meaning you can pop in a 512 MB or 1 GB microdrive for the ultimate in storage.

    The 4500 is a hefty metal camera, and you can't just drop it into a breast pocket. But you also won't be afraid of damaging it easily. It looks and feels like it works--sharp, dependable, and versatile. --J. Curtis

    Pros:

    • Bright, detailed images
    • High resolution and optical zoom
    • Innovative twist design

    Cons:

    • Hefty
    • Have to remove battery to recharge
    ... Read more

    Features

    • 4.0 megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 and beyond
    • 4x optical zoom and 4x digital zoom for 8x total
    • Included 16 MB CompactFlash card holds 16 images at normal setting and 2272 pixel resolution
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses 1 rechargeable Li-ion EN-EL1 battery (included)

    Reviews (36)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Simply Put: It's A Nikon
    For serious digital enthusiasts, this is an incredible machine for the money. First of all, it has Nikon optics. Nothing more needs to be said there. The camera operates from a completely manual mode to complete automation. The color rendition and saturation are extremely accurate and rich.

    The negative items I've encountered after taking more than 1000 images are few and relatively minor. First, as with most auto-focus devices, the camera works best in well lit conditions. The pop-up flash unit is powerful, but it is delicate and needs to be treated gently. And lastly, the navigation through the on-screen menus can be a bit tricky.

    I'd recommend purchasing additional memory (I use a 256Mb card), because once you get used to the features, you will enjoy bracketing your shots to take advantage of the range of performance.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fabulous value, even for a beginner
    I bought the 4500 9 months ago, and have taken almost 2000 pictures, inside department stores, Grand Canyon/ Las Vegas, night landscapes, fireworks, closeups, documents - you name it, with great success. This is a really, really versatile camera that gets better as you spend more time with it, and discover features. I give it a 5, because for the price (I got a great rebate) you can't get better value. Being able to switch lenses is great. I shot the Grand Canyon with a 0.42 wide angle. Inside dept. stores (for work), I shut off the flash, hold the camera at waist height and click. Yes, to quickly adjust for flourescent lighting, or spot focusing, you have to work the menus. But it gets better as you learn to use it more. The only bothersome thing is that it is hard to take pictures of fast moving objects - it takes too long. Oh yes, the 35 sec. video with audio is also great. And the camera is really comfortable to easily hold in one hand and shoot.

    2-0 out of 5 stars too much,& not enough!
    >When I first read about the 4500, I was really excited about some of the features advertised,especially the macro feature.(I am a tattoo artist, and this feature helps with documenting my work)Unfortunately,the camera is not really living up to my high expectations;
    >It's macro feature never seems to capture a clear photo.(either blurry ,too dark,or the flash washes the image out.)
    >It's auto focus doesn't do much better.
    >Technical support seemed futile each time I tried.
    >It seems nearly impossible to get any point and shoot from the camera at all.

    >There is one feature that I enjoy, and that's the 35 second film snips it produces...otherwise, I'd recommend a more user friendly camera.

    4-0 out of 5 stars People are still buying this?
    I got this cam in thailand two years ago and while it's been a real workhorse for me, i'm surprised to see it's still selling around the web. Well, maybe it's that good a camera. I give it four stars; here's why: the quality of the build is good but for the following things: focus motor connector came loose once and rubber strip on front is now super-glued. i am a journalist, so i beat the hell outta these things. as far as function: the tele-converter tc-e33d 3x is worthless on this camera without a tripod and the results are questionable even with. Performance in low light is not good. Battery life is good. And the fact that you can pop in disposables available anywhere is a blessing. Oh, the AV output connector stopped outputting some time ago...the socket in the camera is defective i suspect. BUT THE AMAZING THING is the camera's clarity in closeup mode using the WC-E24 lens. It's what you would expect from a professional SLR, but not in a consumer digital. I did some catalogue work with this camera using the ring-light adapter and I don't think the SLR could have done better. Don't be swayed by those who say why not get an SLR instead of this one, or get a tiny IXUS? This camera is perfect for the professional who already has too much to lug around and can't be bothered with tiny toys either. Good luck!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Brilliant camera for ones who have time
    OK, first of all, I'm a 14-year-old wanting to just snap some pictures on the go, and something I could afford. However, my dad is a photographer and would like to have some use for a digital cam too... after lots of research, this camera is clearly the best for us. I LOVE IT! :) It has GREAT quality. The setting options are endless, but if you don't want to fool around, that's fine. Auto mode is your friend. And for those who say the menus are hard to control...sure, it could be easier. But after reading the manual, the controls really aren't THAT hard. The swivel design is really clever...and yes, Nikon customer service is horrid, but then again, so are many other companies. You've got to admit, Nikon makes amazing cameras.

    If all you want is a little techie toy to show off to your friends and take some pictures, look somewhere else. It's rather bulky sometimes, but the good factors definitely outweigh that. It's not the most cool-looking camera in the world, but I'm glad Nikon focused on quality instead.

    And one more thing...when they said that having to take the battery out to recharge was a bad thing? It's not, necessarily. Think about it. If you have a backup battery (like me), it is SO much better to be able to use the camera, then when one battery runs out, put it to charge while you use the other battery to keep snapping pictures. It's BETTER this way! :)

    Hope this was helpful! ... Read more


    4. Leica Digilux 1 3.9MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Leica
    list price: $950.99
    our price: $799.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006FRJK
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Leica
    Sales Rank: 2127
    Average Customer Review: 4.71 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    With classic elements of design, operating convenience, and technical advancements, the Leica Digilux 1 digital camera shares the outstanding optical quality, speed, and mobility of the original Leica 1 film camera from 1925. The Digilux 1 is made for the 21st century, with a 4-megapixel CCD sensor, high-speed aspherical Leica lens with 3x optical zoom, and a large 2.5-inch LCD for reviewing your photos.

    Optics and Resolution
    Because outstanding image quality can only be achieved through the optimal interplay of all components, the lens was tailored specifically to the 4-megapixel sensor in order to make full use of the optical and electronic capabilities. The Digilux 1 features a Leica DC Vario-Summicron 3x aspherical zoom lens with a range of focal lengths from 7-21mm, corresponding to a zoom range of 33-100mm on analog 35mm cameras. The speed of the lens is f2 to f2.5.

    The Digilux 1 offers five alternatives for exposure control: fully automatic mode, programmed automatic mode, aperture priority, speed priority, and a setting for manual mode. It's also equipped with a ring for manual focusing so that you can get the best results from close-ups.

    Camera Display
    The 2.5-inch LCD screen on the back of the Digilux 1 is 50 to 90 percent larger than those on comparable cameras. Its size is ideal for meticulous picture evaluation and its 205,000 resolution makes manual focusing much easier. The attachable monitor hood makes good picture evaluation possible even in daylight. The Digilux 1 also features an optical viewfinder with diopter compensation.

    Camera Speed
    On many digital cameras, there are delays between the switching on of the camera and its readiness to shoot, as well as between the activation of the shutter release and the actual exposure. The Digilux 1 has been optimized for speed, enabling you to photograph spontaneously and be ready to shoot continuously. You can also make exposure sequences of up to eight pictures at a rate of approximately four exposures per second.

    Movie Mode
    Video sequences are recorded in the Apple QuickTime format in a size of 320 x 240 pixels. The length of the video recordings is limited only by the capacity of the memory card. With the 64 MB Secure Digital card that is supplied with the camera, the video recording time lasts for approximately six minutes.

    Storage and Transfer
    The 64 MB SD card can store 32 images with the highest resolution and lowest compression or up to 484 pictures with low resolution at the highest compression.

    Power
    The Digilux 1 features a powerful rechargeable lithium-ion battery. The included AC adapter/battery charger can charge the Digilux 1 in about two hours. With the monitor display switched on, the Digilux 1 can be operated for approximately two hours, or for approximately three hours with the monitor display turned off.

    Size
    The Digilux 1 measures 5 by 2.25 by 2.6 inches and weighs 16 ounces with battery.

    Contents
    This package comprises the Digilux 1 digital camera, a 64 MB Secure Digital card, a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, a hood for the LCD, AV and USB cables, a carrying strap, Adobe Photoshop Elements 1.0, and USB drivers for Windows and Mac. ... Read more

    Features

    • 3.9-megapixel sensor captures enough detail to create prints up to 11 x 14 and beyond to poster size
    • 3x optical zoom with autofocus
    • Stores photos on 64 MB Secure Digital card--up to 32 images at high resolution
    • Connects to PCs via USB port
    • Powered by rechargeable lithium-ion battery

    Reviews (14)

    5-0 out of 5 stars I Leic it!
    This camera has exceeded my expectations of what any digital camera should be. I was fearful during the purchasing process because I read "pro" reviews for this camera that were not favorable. They complained about severe noise at ISO 200 & 400. Luckily, I do not use these settings very often, I use a tripod and long exposures for low-light situations if I have to.

    The real test occured when I held this camera for the first time--wonderful! My favorite physical qualities of this piece of art are the well-placed levers (yes I said levers, much like a Leica M), manual focus/settings and magnesium housing. The large display is very useful. I've gotten many + comments about the camera's superb design.

    More important than physical prowess though, OPTICS. This is what sets the Digilux apart from its competitors. Fast and clear, enough said.

    One last note, I bought the optional Filter Adapter at a local camera shop... Ohhh, what I'm willing to pay for Leica quality. With the adapter screwed on, the lense cap does not fit. This is a minor detail because filters offer protection and you can get an aftermarket cap that fits. Soon I will add accessories (wide-angle lense, more filters) to increase the camera's photo possibilities.

    It's truly first class.

    5-0 out of 5 stars After a year of use ...
    OK, I admit that I am a sucker for the Leica name, but hey, it has meant quality and incredible optics for a very long time, so I had little difficulty choosing this camera last year when I decided to finally go digital. After one year of use, I have nothing but praise for this camera. Although I pine a bit for the Digilux 2, I am not ready to trade my Digilux 1 in and pay the premium. As a digital rangefinder, with excellent automatic and manual aspects, I have been able to satisfy both sides of my hobby: the snapshot photographer and the advanced hobbiest artist. The pictures I produce using this camera are stunning; the colors dense and true, and their ability to be manipulated in Photoshop a breeze. I highly recommend this camera to anyone considering it ... at this price, you're getting a bargain!

    4-0 out of 5 stars Love isn't all
    I love my Leica. It is rock solid and it takes nice pictures. It is true that there are some noise problems in iso 200 and 400, but hey then I just use iso 100 for indoor shots. That requires longer opening times and can give blurry pictures, but usually I just set it to take 4 or 8 pictures at a time and then at least one of them is usually ok. Should I buy again I would probably go for Canon Digital Rebel which is almost in the same pricerange.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Pictures are the reason.
    The true measure of this camera is the quality of the pictures it produces. Here's my take on the reasons this camera takes such stunning shots (and is worth the cost):

    1. Button speed. You will actually capture the moment you are looking for with this camera. Most digital cameras take bland pictures because, well, what they are taking a picture of is not interesting and the moment has passed. With this camera your eye will tell you when the picture is right, and blam! You'll have it captured.

    2. Lens quality. The blacks are blacker, the whites are whiter, the colors are richer. Things are sharper. Nobody can deny Leica produces top-quality lenses.

    3. Feel good controls. The camera body is Magnesium and feels fantastic. With it in your hands, it has a tendancy to outclass it's wearer, like a suit that's a bit too expensive for the occasion. An interesting thing happens, you will try to take better pictures. Don't underestimate this effect. Due to the excellent simplicity of the controls, when you do try to become an expert, you actualy can because the camera doesn't get in the way or make you squint endlessly at onscreen menus to change settings.

    These are three very simple things that combine to make a very unique camera. I don't believe you'll find all of these things combined in any other digital camera.

    Some have said there's a strange pattern or pixelation when zoomed WAY in on images on screen. Two responses:

    1. You aren't going to spend any time zoomed in on pictures on your computer when looking at them in a normal manner. At display resolutions, these pictures are as clear or clearer than any from Canon, or Sony comparable models.

    2. This *may* actually be intentional on Leica's part. If you print out a picture from this camera, it is always stunning, even at full size or larger. Some liken this to a stochastic (look it up) printing process. Whatever the case, find a print sample your self from this camera, there's no denying the overall effect more artistic and is a cut above simiar competitive brands.

    I have had zero issues with this camera since ordering it from Amazon 8 months ago. My only complaint is that the Digilux 2 is even better...

    3-0 out of 5 stars YOU MAY HAVE BETTER OPTIONS FOR LESSER..
    ..if you aren't obstinately attached to the brand. Aesthetics apart ('big', 'boxy' come to mind) this is NOT the camera you should go for if you want anything beyond an ISO of about a 100 -- and this is not coming from a point-and-click amateur. Yes, the manual controls are charming but if alternative brands offer me a better device (primarily, better pics, i.e.) with a lighter price tag, I begin to question.

    WHAT'S GOOD ABOUT THE DIGILUX:

    (1) Very, very fast response times in its class. This alone could be a dream criterion for some of you.
    (2) A spacious monitor on the cam, bigger than matching Olympus, Canon or Nikon offerings.
    (3) The much vaunted manual controls, no need for reflex cams.
    (4) The Summicron lens, which leads to good pictures if the only alternative you have owned is a Sony entry-level point and shoot. If you have ever worked with a Nikon D100 or a Canon G3 (or above) then the quality difference is minimally incremental.

    WHAT'S NOT:

    (1) The price tag. For me, just the name doesn't cut it.
    (2) Sub-par battery life.
    (3) .mov format for the movies? Why?
    (4) Think about where you'll be getting your tech support. It's not very easy.
    (5) The reference guide is a pain to comprehend.
    (6) A lean 2x optiocal zoom, which is also a bit deceiving - the imaging chip is so small, you can almost NEVER achieve background blur for portraits, or any other form of professional photography.
    (7) Where's the noise reduction that is so COMMON with other competitors?
    (8) A hood for the lens would've been nice.
    (9) WB when using a flash is too bluish green.
    (10) Ugly body (ok, this is subjective) -- almost seems tailor made for big German hands.
    (11) Where's RAW?

    SUMMARY:

    I know a Leica when I see one. If you're looking for a digi version of the M6, this isn't it. I wonder why other reviewers would rate a product based on the halo of its overall brand. I'd wait for a revised version of this offering from Leica, their lens is worth the wait. Meanwhile, consider Nikon D100s (or even 5700) or Canon's EOS (or G5 etc) if you are in the market for a digital. ... Read more


    5. Nikon Coolpix 4300 4MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Nikon

    Asin: B00006KIYS
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Nikon
    Sales Rank: 950
    Average Customer Review: 4.11 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Review

    The Nikon Coolpix 4300 packs a lot into its tiny frame: a 4-megapixel CCD, a 3x optical zoom (4x digital), and an excellent list of high-end features. It's also easy to grip and can be used entirely with one hand--for right-handers at least (as usual, southpaws will just have to get used to the design).

    We were able to adjust the saturation, white balance, and noise reduction of our images even before taking a shot. The 1.5-inch LCD is smaller than average, but the bright and crisp panel was clearly visible in anything but direct sunlight.

    The 4300's image quality duly impressed us--crisp, bright colors that stood up to 11-by-17-inch enlargements. You can also capture 40-second video clips, although they're silent movies. We appreciated the Best Shot Selector feature, which let us snap up to 10 quick pictures and then have the Nikon cull out the best one for us.

    We were able to get over 90 minutes of use out of the rechargeable lithium-ion battery, although we had to remove it for recharging. This design works well for an optional backup battery; however, you'll need a fully-charged battery ready to go. Nikon includes a 16 MB CompactFlash card, but you'll want to upgrade early on--high-resolution images and video clips fill 16 MB rapidly.

    One minor caveat: if we turned the camera on with the lens cap in place, the 4300 would flash a message telling us about it. Removing the lens cap didn't work, and we had to turn the camera off and back on to clear the message and get started.

    For the price, the Coolpix 4300 delivers a lot of megapixels and excellent image quality. If you're planning on upgrading to a high-end digital camera, plan a stop right here. --J. Curtis

    Pros:

    • Bright, crisp images
    • High-end features
    • Easy-to-hold design

    Cons:

    • Have to remove battery to recharge
    • Lens cap irritation
    ... Read more

    Features

    • 4.0 megapixel sensor creates 2,272 x 1,704 images for prints at 11 x 14 and beyond
    • 3x optical zoom and 4x digital zoom for 12x total
    • Included 16 MB CompactFlash card holds 16 images at normal setting and 2272 pixel resolution
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses 1 rechargeable Li-ion EN-EL1 battery (included)

    Reviews (65)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Compact Digital Camera
    I am a Nikon fan, and owned and used SLR Nikon FE, N50 and N90s for many many years.

    Recently bought this Coolpix 4300 along with a 256MB ULTRA flash card ... As expected, I happily found that qualities of the picture are excellent with 3M-4M Pixel/FINE combos and many of the user-friendly functions are very similar to SLR models, and with added convenience of a digital camera that you can see pictures immediately. I particularly like the "TXT" file which records all the Control information for all the pictures you take...The compact digital camera is especially useful if you have little children around and you can always take the camera with you and take many pictures of them.

    Try to buy a high capacity Ultra card, as it's 2X as faster as the regular CF card. Consider the time you save during picture taking (especially not missing a good moment) and during download, it's well worth the little extra money.

    An extra rechargeable EN-EL1 battery.. is also handy, so you will seldom run into "out of battery" situation. Use the rechargeable because that saves you money and helps the environment in a long run.

    One thing puzzles me is that for "FINE and 2200+" quality pictures, one Ultra 256MB CF card can only hold 130-140 pics, but the size of the pictures are only around 1.2MB, the math does not add up. I would expecct the card to hold over 200 pictures for size of 1.2 MB/per. Anybody can explain that?

    A Nikon will make you happier and leave you lots of good memories, as always.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Pretty cool pics
    Coming up to 1000 pics with this camera now and this Coolpix does the job. A slightly older design, but now down in price to compete with the newer kids on the block, so look out for the deals. Feeling feels solid in the hand with a pleasingly positive shutter button, it is slightly heavier than the competition which helps to steady your shot when you capture the moment.

    In the 'green' all auto mode it produces pretty good results with a low button count. Switch to the scene mode (fireworks, sunset etc) and you don't have to worry about f-stops and apertures, your pictures will also benefit. There is also enough scope for the developing photographer to explore in the manual mode. Manual white balance, shutter speed and focussing are all here although there are only 2 true apertures from which to choose. So sit down, get a tripod and read the manual - the menus at times can be a little esoteric. Take some time to play at home and become familiar with the camera, it's well worth it.

    Essential accessories:
    - Battery - this camera does not take AA's so buy one or two 3 rd party batteries
    - Compactflash cards - again 1 or 2 128MB (or larger) cards don't go crazy and get a huge 4GB CF - buy a couple of smaller cards rather than one large one - you will sit on one, drop one in a cup of tea one day, transfer regularly and you won't lose you precious pics
    -Card reader - less than $10 for a PC card for your laptop or not much more for a USB reader - save your batteries and faster transfers

    A day shooting about 120 pics will use up approximately one 128MB card and 1 battery (using LCD, shooting 4mp JPEGs etc) so don't get caught out, stock up!

    Pros:

    -Clean, sharp images that print nicely at 6x4" 5x7" size (4mp is more than enough for this and gives you a little leeway for cropping)
    -Superb macro out of the box - very easy to get great results
    -Not too button heavy - 'auto' modes yield good pictures without delving in the manual
    -Uses cheap, readily available Compactflash media
    -Feels solid and comfortable in the hand, heavier and less plasticky than Canon A70/80

    Cons:

    -Proprietory battery - not AA so you're stuck when you can't recharge you Li-ions, but 3rd party battery so far is cheap and running well
    -Lens cap - it will get on your nerves
    -Huge shutter lag (5-6 secs) when LCD is turned off good for saving battery, bad for catching the action

    But go to a shop, pick it up, play with it then buy it on Amazon!

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good pictures, loud, slow, and a bit big.
    Overall: Good for the price, and the quality Nikon optics.

    But it is slower than I imagined - comparing it to other camers that use a different metering system with the "red light laser" thingy.

    That plastic cap - I got use to it - don't worry about that.
    The battery - I NEED ONE THAT LASTS LONGER!
    The pictures - great 4mp quality with plenty of handy scene modes
    The extras - I wnat to get a wide angle lens soon.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Stationed in Iraq......
    and this camera is everything I wanted! Even more. Extremely easy to use right out of the box. Very durable......so far. Pictures are perfectly clear and easy to send to my wife via e-mail. Two drawbacks: Camera is a bit loud. Maybe because it's always focusing on objects. 16 mb card is a joke. Luckily, I have a thumb drive and I can download them to it. Anyway, if you're looking for a great camera at a reasonable price, go with the Nikon 4300.

    4-0 out of 5 stars good camera, but not terrific
    I bought this camera one year ago and paid mid $300 for it. It did produce several nice pictures. But I'm disappointed with two facts. First of all, it's hard to get a good picture of moving subjects. Many pictures of my baby girl, when she is waving her hands or rolling over on the floor, are blurry. Second, I haven't gotten any good prints yet. All pictures look vivid on the computer but dull on the print. Maybe it's because I developed them at Sam's club. But it sucks if the only way to get good pix is to develop them at somewhere else at higher price.

    I have read several good reviews of this product on this website and many others. I feel either those guys are smarter than me, or they just have relatively low expectation of digital cameras. I really hope that in the future when someone writes his enthusiastic reviews of this product, he can tell us whether he has experienced my problems, and if yes, how he solves them. ... Read more


    6. Nikon Coolpix 995 3.2MP Digital Camera with 4x Optical Zoom
    by Nikon

    Asin: B00005MA9X
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Nikon
    Sales Rank: 1518
    Average Customer Review: 4.25 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    The Nikon Coolpix 995 builds on the versatile swivel design of the Coolpix 990 and 950, with features such as a new multimode pop-up flash that helps reduce red-eye considerably, and a handful of inventive creative controls, including white-balance bracketing, four-color saturation modes, and a 50-step manual focus mode. Its 3.34-megapixel CCD sensor captures high-resolution images (maximum of 2,048 x 1,536 pixels) for quality enlargements, and the 4x optical zoom Nikkor lens provides the 35mm photography equivalent of a 38-152mm zoom. This is currently the highest zoom range in the Coolpix line (as of July 2001). The Coolpix 995 also has a 4x stepless digital zoom, 256-element matrix metering, an advanced autofocus system, QuickTime movie mode for movies up to 40 seconds long, multiple automatic exposure modes, and a 1.8-inch LCD monitor with 6x zooming playback.

    One of the best reasons to choose the Coolpix 995 is for the quality Nikkor optics and the ability to add any (optional) Coolpix converter lenses and accessories. There is even a multiflash sync terminal for attaching up to five external Nikon Speedlights. The camera's 4x optical zoom lens incorporates two aspherical elements (10 elements in 8 groups overall) for optimal performance in a compact design, plus it features super-integrated coating (SIC) for incredible sharpness. In macro mode, you can focus as close as 0.8 inches from your subject. Other interesting features include the ability to shoot subjects in motion with a high-speed full-resolution image capture at three frames per second, an improved shutter speed of 1/2,300 per second, and a fast maximum ISO setting of 800. There is also a noise reduction mode on the 995 to minimize digital artifacts and help capture excellent images at long exposures.

    To sweeten the deal, the Coolpix 995 comes with rechargeable lithium-ion battery and charger, Lexar 16MB CompactFlash memory card, USB cable for high-speed connectivity, multiple software products (even a program that allows users to edit their QuickTime movies), lens cap, and neck strap. It is covered by a one-year warranty. ... Read more

    Features

    • 3-megapixel sensor captures enough detail to create prints up to 11 x 14
    • 4x optical plus 4x digital (16x total) autofocus zoom lens
    • Included 16 MB CompactFlash memory holds 19 images at default resolution
    • Connects with Macs and PCs via USB port
    • Uses dedicated lithium-ion rechargeable battery pack (included)

    Reviews (76)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great camera, but not without limitations
    Strengths:

    1. 4x optical zoom. Most digicams in this price range only have 3x, and most lower-priced cameras only have a 2x or no zoom at all.

    2. Pop-up flash. Many owners of the Coolpix 990 and 950 have significant red-eye trouble. Popping up the flash on the 995 gets it far enough away from the lens to eliminate most red-eye troubles.

    3. High resolution. 3.3 megapixels in a quality camera like this is more than enough for most serious amateurs. The only time this will become a limitation is if you want to make obscenely large prints (probably 16" x 20" or larger, and even then I don't think it would be a significant degradation) or if you want to crop significantly and make an 8" x 10" or something in that range. I have been very pleased with my results, even in...

    4. Auto mode. The 995 has a steep learning curve if you want to really take advantage of its full feature set. But its auto mode is intuitive enough that you can take the camera out of the box and start taking quality shots immediately. The auto mode is no more complicated than any point-and-shoot camera. Excellent feature.

    Weaknesses:

    1. 16 mb CompactFlash card. This one is really a joke. Nikon should have included at least a 32mb card and probably a 128. I strongly suggest purchasing a larger CF card immediately. Most CF cards have fallen to the 50 cents per meg range now (January 2002), so you should be able to get a good name-brand 128mb CF card for $60 or so. Do it. Now.

    2. Digital zoom. Worthless. The pixellization is horrendous, and unless you have a huge amount of light the lens speed is such that you really need a tripod to avoid camera shake.

    3. Lens speed. With no zoom the aperture is f/2.6. The further you zoom, the worse it gets. If you don't have a tripod, I strongly suggest one (the 995's mount is sturdy and well-made, by the way).

    4. No case included. Again, something you definitely need. I've had very good luck with LowePro, and they're reasonably priced.

    5. Complicated menu system. To take advantage of all the features of this excellent camera, you really need to spend significant time reading the manual and exploring the extensive menu system. Not for the faint of heart.

    I've given 4 out of 5 stars, with one star removed due to the above weaknesses. But this is a fantastic camera. I've had mine for only about three weeks and I've already taken more than 300 shots, many of them excellent. I highly recommend it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Nikon's Grand Reputation Untarnished
    I have owned 2 or three 35mm SLR cameras and based on
    reputation, decided to go with the Nikon 995 for digital photography. I could not be more pleased with this purchase. Whether you point and shoot with the auto mode or
    go for controlled effects with manual, this thing makes wonderful pictures. The 995 has it all--the pixels, the zoom, the monitor, the close-ups, the convenience AND simple to use. Like the camera, accessories are precision made albeit somewhat pricey, but hey--you're getting the quality of a Nikon.
    Every conceivable option is available including telephoto
    lense, wide-angle, fisheye, and assorted filters to name a few. The camera design allows 360 degree vertical rotation so
    one can look into the monitor AND shoot the photographer.
    The location of the built-in flash reduces redeye over prior models. I have read a few reviews where someone had trouble loading onto their computer. I am a computer neandrethal and this puppy was up and running in a few minutes without a single hassle. Color is fantastic, but it helps to orchestrate your lighting for professional results. I could go rambling on,
    but let's keep it succinct, "you get what you pay for" has
    never been more true than with the Nikon 995.

    5-0 out of 5 stars THE BEST CAMERA EVER
    I have been using the 995 since 2001, I am a medical Radiologist, in my field everybody needs a high quality digital camara aid for storing cases. The results using my Nikon 995 compared to other cameras (from my collegues) in the same range are breath taking!! You a get a great Nikor lens, with a very convenient Makro and so many manual options that makes it impossible to need another camera.
    Plus you can have add-ons that the others don't have like the slide reproducer that lets you digitize all the old slides!!. I have literaly taken thousands of pictures and works as good as new. The 995 lets you take charge when you need to, but also has the automatic ¨SNAPPY¨ mode for easier shots. It's a must have. After comparing I can't imagine 3 years later why would I want to change it for another.

    4-0 out of 5 stars It was a great first Digital Camera for me the dentist
    Just got home today after looking at new digital cameras, all of the sudden my Nikon 995 seems HUGE. But over the past 18 months it has been flawless, and made me switch completely to digital for family and some work (dentist).
    I thought it interesting that someone noted that red eye was not as much of a problem as earlier Nikon digital cameras - I thought it was a big problem, and it would be my one complaint about the 995.
    The 3.2MP was more then sufficient, I recently just got an 8 X 10" from an online printing surface, and it is beautiful. Printing on my HP 7550 I was able to get excellent 5" X 7"'s, but I guess this isn't a printer review.
    The menus are easy, and downloading via USB was a snap. I would rate the software as very average. I still don't understand why WIN XP can't just recognize the camera for direct downloading instead of going through a third party soft ware.
    I have now attached the camera to a clinical microscope and will continue to use it. And I don't think I will buy anything more then a 4MP camera for my next hobby camera. Of course, I just purchased the 6.2 Canon Rebel today for work and serious photograpy, but that's another story...

    5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome for closeup pictures!
    I received this camera as a gift 2 years ago.

    I sell gemstones and jewelry and it was very important that I could get a camera that took good closeup pictures. This camera never let me down!

    It is also great for everyday pics of the family or vacation shots but it met and exceeded my needs for the up close images I needed.

    Thanks Nikon for an awesome camera! :-) ... Read more


    7. Canon PowerShot S200 2MP Digital ELPH Camera w/2x Optical Zoom
    by Canon Cameras US
    list price: $379.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000645C9
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Canon Cameras US
    Sales Rank: 966
    Average Customer Review: 4.51 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Inch for inch and ounce for ounce, Canon's PowerShot S200 Digital Elphpacks more power into less space than virtually any other digital camera,stuffing a feature-packed, 2-megapixel camera with 2x optical zoom into adiminutive brushed-metal case that slips easily into a purse or pocket.

    Resolution
    Like last year's S110, the S200 features a 2-megapixel sensor for sharp printsat sizes up to 8 by 10 inches. With cameras of up to 5 megapixels now on themarket, some enthusiasts were hoping the Elph would makethe jump to 3 megapixels, but it appears that Canon still believes 2 megapixelsremains the best balance between performance and price for most consumers. Wetend to agree. If you regularly print your photos at sizes larger than 8 by 10inches, you'll probably want a camera with higher resolution and more manual controls than the Elphoffers--we recommend Canon's 3-megapixel S30 or 4-megapixel S40.

    Optics
    A 2x optical zoom lens (35-70mm equivalent) aids in photo composition, and anadditional 2.5x digital zoom (5x total) further magnifies your image. Remember,however, that digital zoom reduces the sharpness and detail of your image, soit's best used sparingly. Two systems help ensure your pictures will beperfectly focused, even in challenging conditions: a multizone autofocus workseven when the subject of your photo isn't in the center of the scene, and inlow-light situations (a particular weakness of many digital cameras), afocus-assist lamp sends out a small patterned beam to help the camera accuratelydetermine distance. If you're hoping for a more powerful zoom, the S330 Elph hasa 3x zoom and slightly larger dimensions but is otherwise nearly identical.

    More Features
    Though it's primarily designed as a point-and-shoot, the S200 includes severaladvanced features for photographers who want more creative control, includingexposure compensation, low-light manual shutter speeds, manual ISO and whitebalance, and stitch assist, plus black-and-white, sepia, vivid, and neutralmodes.

    A movie mode captures video clips with sound. Depending upon resolution, theseclips can last from 2 to 60 seconds. The limited length and resolution of theseclips guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it'sperfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to afriend or relative. In addition, you can add up to 60 seconds of audio to eachstill picture you take.

    Power
    The S200 uses a proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery, and both thebattery and the charger are included. Though the new NB-1LH looks identical to(and is interchangeable with) the NB-1L batteries shipped with previous Elphmodels, the new battery holds 840 mAh of energy, a 23 percent increase. Becausethe battery is unique to the Elph cameras and can be nearly impossible to findwhen on the road, we strongly recommend getting a spare if you're planning totake the camera on extended outings.

    Storage and Transfer
    Images are stored on standard Type I CompactFlash cards. Consider the included 8MB card a starter capacity, since its 12-picture limit means you'll need toreturn to your computer often to transfer images and free up the card for morepictures. A 128 MB card is a great size for this camera, storing around 200images. To transfer images to your computer, simply attach the included USBcable between your PC and your camera. Your computer should automaticallyrecognize your camera and let you move the pictures to your hard drive.

    Printing
    Canon has introduced a series of printers designed to work directly with theS200. Using these printers, no computer is required--simply connect the camerato the printer and start printing. The CP-10 produces credit-card-sized prints,and the CP-100 makes 4-by-6-inch prints. Both use continuous-tone technology forresults that are indistinguishable from traditional photos. Of course, photosfrom your Elph can also be printed on any home computer system with an inkjetprinter, sent off for online processing, or simply enjoyed on your computerscreen.

    Size
    At just 3.4 by 2.2 by 1.1 inches and 6.3 ounces, the S200 is even smaller thanits predecessor, making it one of the smallest zoom digital cameras on themarket.

    Contents and Recommended Accessories
    The package includes the S200 camera, NB-1LH battery with CB-2LS charger, AV andUSB cables, wrist strap, software suite, and 8 MB memory card.

    Everything you need to get started is included in the box, but we stronglyrecommend the addition of a larger memory card (a 128 MB card holds around 200images), a spare NB-1L battery, and a compact carrying case (to protect thebrushed-metal finish and keep pocket lint out of the viewfinder). --ShaneBurnett

    Pros:

    • Ultraportable size makes it easy to bring along
    • Picture quality is excellent, even in low-light situations
    • New features, a better battery, and slightly smaller size are improvementsover last year's S110

    Cons:

    • 2-megapixel sensor is adequate for most users but starting to look low bytoday's standards
    • 8 MB card is too small for more than occasional use
    ... Read more

    Features

    • 2-megapixel sensor captures 1,600 x 1,200 images for prints at sizes up to 8 x 10 inches
    • Autofocus lens with 2x optical/2.5x digital (5x total) zoom
    • Included 8 MB CompactFlash card holds 12 images at default settings
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery (included)

    Reviews (154)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Middle child.
    I have been a dedicated digital Elph user since the first S100 was released and have really gotten my money's worth from that camera. It is a rock-solid, 2 megapixel, 2X optical zoom, pocketable digicam. It was not, however, a perfect camera, and the first update, the S110 attempted to address its major shortcomings, most significantly by fixing the poorly designed power switch and by adding a movie function. Next came the S200, which added to the movie function (60 seconds max., with sound) better battery management and higher amperage and several new user controls. It did *not* add the anticipated 3 megapixel resolution, nor improve upon the 2X optical zoom. The series continued with the S300 & now the S330, and these indeed do offer the 3X optical zoom (forget about digital zooms; they're nearly useless, especially in lower resolution cameras), though not the 3 megapixel resolution (this is important *only* if your intention is printing enlargements greater than 8" x 10"). So with all 5 of the digital Elphs still widely available, which would suit you best? Personally, considering their prices graduate only slowly, and given my experience that a better optical zoom makes for a more useful camera, I'd go for the ... S300. However, if size is not a major factor in your decision process, skip the premium one pays for the Elphs' compactness and consider the fact that you can buy other digicams that are only modestly larger but rather better equipped for less money.

    5-0 out of 5 stars This is a great camera.
    * It's TINY no bigger than a deck of cards, I can take it everywhere.

    * It feels STURDY. Cased in stainless steel, not imitation spray-painted plastic.

    * It takes AMAZING PICTURES. 2MP is just fine for 6X4 prints, and much more than enough for email shots.

    * The USER INTERFACE is excellent. Very intuitive. Easy to learn. The LCD is clear and bright.

    * The supplied BATTERY lasts all day long.

    * It's MANUAL FUNCTION lets me be creative with my pictures

    I bought 128MB more memory, a spare battery and a carry case. In my opinion these are essential and should all have been included in the kit, but they're not...

    I have had a Canon Eos 35mm SLR for six years and have been very happy with it -- but the portability and unobtrusiveness of the ELPH means I can take it anywhere, and it takes photography somewhere new.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Tried and True--> Wonderful Compact Camera.
    Let me first qualify my rating a bit before I get into specifics:
    1) It seems the mean for compact camera resolution currently is about 3-4 megapixels if bought brand new. This is a 2 megapixel camera, which was the mean for a compact camera about 2 years ago (when I bought the camera).
    2) This rating is based on 2 years of wonderful experience with this camera and thousands of pictures taken. If you are set on a 2 megapixel camera regardless of price, then this is the camera for you.

    -Picture Quality- Amazing for a 2 megapixel camera. I routinely print out 4x6 pictures at great quality. Before this camera I was using an APS Elph. Without a doubt this camera prints much better quality pictures than my old APS compact camera. Although keep in mind, no matter how good the camera is, the prints can only be as good as the printer. The only problem I had with this camera is that it is VERY dependent on the flash for point and shoot pictures. Without the flash, unless you are in bright sunlight, pictures can come out blurry if you don't have steady hands.

    -Features- AMAZING. Simply more features than you will use if you are buying the camera for quick snapshots. Also the problem with the flash dependence that I mentioned earlier can be fixed using the manual features. But with that said, it is impractical to change these features manually everytime you want to take a quick shot, but it is very handy when you want to take portrait type or studio type shots. This camera also has a movie function with sound that most cameras have nowadays. Most people say they don't use it, but I use the function a lot. I find the main problem is that most people just forget they have the function so it is never used, but if you can get in the habit of using it you'll have priceless small clips (at a low resolution) of things that happened.
    A 2x optical zoom isn't too shabby either considering many compact cameras don't offer a zoom.

    -Durability- again AMAZING. I have never dropped this camera (well once off a bed, onto some really soft carpet), but I've owned this for 2 years and probably 75% of those two years that camera has resided in my jeans pocket with lint, keys, cell phones, change... and not even ONE scratch and it still works perfectly. I did buy a small pouch for it, but the pouch really goes against what this camera is about, fast pictures. It wasn't practical to take the camera out of the pouch everytime I wanted a quick picture so I never used it, and it turns out I never needed it.
    Also the camera is heavy and solid for its size. Too heavy for a shirt pocket, but definitely light enough to put into your pants. Its made of a metallic material that feels much better than the plastic that most compact cameras are made of.
    The display screen on the back of the camera is plenty big enough to use to frame your shots. The viewfinder however does not accurately show the picture you are taking, which is a problem for many cameras. I never use the viewfinder because of this, but I never really want to either unless I forgot to charge my battery and I want to conserve battery power... which leads me to...

    -Battery Life- The battery easily lasts the whole day of picture taking if you are on a vacation for instance. Easily I would be able to take 100+ pictures with flash and the screen on. But I have noticed over the thousands of pictures I have taken that the constant recharging of my battery has made the life lessen a bit. But that is to be expected from any battery over a couple of years of high usage.

    -Price and Summary- I think the deciding factor for this camera is price. I gave this camera five stars because I couldn't be happier with my camera... BUT i bought the camera 2 years ago. A quick look at cameras of equivalent price and one can easily find 3-4 megapixel cameras for the same price (but maybe not the same quality). A quick look at cheaper cameras and I can also find plenty of 2 megapixel cameras from reputable brands such as Minolta, Nikon and Fuji. This camera has kept its price amazingly well over 2 years for an electronic device (I bought mine 2 years ago for $250). I think it has to do with the HIGH quality of this product. But if you have the extra $$$ for a mere $100 more you can get a 4 megapixel Elph.
    I am very satisfied with this product and I know when I eventually get a new camera several years from now it will be another Canon Elph.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Convenient, takes good pics, but a little slow
    This little guy is my first digital camera, and I love it. It's so tiny that I can carry it everywhere, which means I am actually using it to take pictures (instead of it sitting in a drawer in my house). It's also pretty durable -- I've dropped it no less than a dozen times and there's not even a scratch on it.

    My only complaint is when there are odd lighting conditions (i.e. a dark room with candles or a lighted sign), the camera can take a little too long to take the picture. I would also recommend buying the tripod, because the camera takes lovely night pictures.

    4-0 out of 5 stars durable, go anywhere trooper
    i've been using my s200 for a couple of years now, and it's toured the world with me. it's been durable, convenient, and a great home and road camera. i just got back from tokyo and took hundreds of photos and several minutes of video (30 second AVIs) with it. same with france, washington dc, and the like ...

    it's got good exposure detection, a very simple to use interface, and has the features i was looking for. the zoom is pretty good for most situations, and it's reasonably responsive (boot up time, delay between click and exposure).

    i'm not that thrilled with the macro capabilities, my nikon coolpix 800 did much better. nor am i thrilled about the "no zoom during movie capture" feature.

    overall, i'm quite happy with my s200 as a point-and-shoot camera. i'd definitely get it again if i had the choice to do over. however, now i'd probably go for a few more bells and whistles, including more optical zoom and better macro shots. still, can't beat the form factor! ... Read more


    8. Olympus E-20 5MP Digital Camera w/ 4x Optical Zoom
    by Olympus
    list price: $2,249.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005QCO1
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Olympus
    Sales Rank: 1658
    Average Customer Review: 4.47 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    You'd be hard-pressed to find a digital camera that captures better images than those from the Olympus E-20N. The camera pairs a 5-megapixel sensor with a high-quality custom-designed 4x zoom lens for photos with clarity that rivals film.

    First, a note about naming conventions: this camera is also known as the E-20 and the E-20P. The N in E-20N signifies that this is an NTSC (North American) model. European versions are called E-20P because their video-out feature is designed to work with PAL televisions. The models are otherwise identical.

    Design and Optics
    The E-20N looks and feels like a high-quality professional film SLR. It's hefty, weighing in at 37 ounces, due both to the glass in the lens and the camera's cast-aluminum body. Unlike other digital cameras in its class, the lens on the E-20N is not removable, which is both a good thing and a bad thing. Digital SLRs from other manufacturers typically include just the camera body, and adding a quality lens is a substantial additional expense. Olympus asserts that having removable lenses exposes the sensor to dust, but digital SLRs from Nikon, Canon, and Fuji all use removable lenses, and dust isn't a widely reported problem with those models. Olympus also states that using a lens specifically designed for a digital camera produces sharper images than using a lens designed for a 35mm SLR. This makes sense, since the imaging sensor in a digital camera is smaller than a 35mm negative.

    The lens on the E-20N contains aspheric elements, ED elements, and a Gauss-type lens group--features designed to maximize image quality, and typically found only on high-end lenses. In 35mm terms, the lens zooms from 35-140mm, with a maximum aperture of f2.0 to f2.4, depending on how much zoom is used. If you're looking for even more flexibility, add-on lenses ranging from 28mm to 420mm are available.

    To compose your photos, either use the swivel-mounted 1.8-inch LCD on the back of the camera or look through the traditional-style ground-glass viewfinder. Most digital SLRs use a mirror to send light to either the viewfinder or the CCD sensor, but the Olympus uses a beam-splitter--basically a prism--to illuminate the viewfinder and the sensor simultaneously. The LCD monitor also sits on a hinge, letting you tilt it up 90 degrees, or down 20 degrees, so you can take pictures from unusual camera angles while still accurately framing the scene.

    The 5-megapixel CCD sensor on the E-20N is one of the highest-resolution sensors currently available and captures images with filmlike detail. Like most CCDs, this unit retains a design limitation handed down from the device's origins in television cameras: it is an interlaced chip, which means the camera reads information from the CCD twice--once for all pixels in the sensor's even rows, and again for all the odd rows. The camera then merges these two sets of data into a single image. This technology limits the top shutter speed in 5-megapixel mode to 1/640th of a second--reasonably quick, but not fast enough for high-speed photography. To get around this limitation, Olympus has added a progressive-scan feature to the camera. In simple terms, this mode only reads information from half of the pixels on the sensor (and limits your photos to 2.5 megapixels), but increases your shutter speed to a screaming 1/18,000th of a second, increasing the camera's flexibility tremendously.

    More Features
    Shooting options on the E-20N include all of the typical modes you'd expect to see on a high-end consumer digital camera: program, aperture priority, shutter priority, and manual shooting modes. Other user-controlled settings include exposure compensation, metering mode, ISO setting, flash, white balance, and focus. Users can leave white balance on auto, select from a number of kelvin temperatures, or manually create a preset. The built-in flash features red-eye reduction, auto, fill-in, and off modes. External flashes can connect to the E-20N through the hot-shoe on top of the camera. Exposure compensation can be set from -3 to +3 EV in one-third EV increments. The ISO can be set to 80, 160, or 320. Also, an autobracketing feature takes three pictures, one over exposed and one under exposed, and allows you to set the exposure compensation up to one EV step in either direction, in one-third EV step increments. A histogram function lets you view exposure information after you capture an image, giving you instant feedback about how to improve your picture-taking skills. A large internal buffer allows the E-20N to take up to take up to four shots in sequence at three frames per second, even when set to record images as uncompressed TIFFs.

    Power
    The E-20N uses four AA or two CR-V3 lithium batteries--a set of the lithium batteries is included. These batteries have a long life, but they aren't rechargeable, so they're not a good long-term solution unless you're an extremely occasional photographer. We strongly recommend using a set of rechargeable nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries.

    Storage and Transfer
    Unlike most other digital cameras, the E-20N uses both SmartMedia and CompactFlash (Type I and II, including the IBM Microdrive) for storage, and can use both simultaneously. The camera has slots for both types of cards, and a menu setting lets you toggle between the slots for storage. The included 32 MB SmartMedia card holds 11 pictures at full resolution with normal compression or two pictures in uncompressed TIFF mode. The card can be erased and reused over and over, but if you plan to take more than 11 photos on an outing, then you'll want a higher-capacity card--a 256 MB CompactFlash card, for example, holds around 80 photos at default settings.

    Contents and Recommended Accessories
    The kit includes the camera, lens hood, lens cap, video, and USB cables, strap, lithium disposable batteries, wireless remote control, 32 MB SmartMedia card, basic manual, and software on CD, including Adobe PhotoShop Elements. Everything you need to get started is included in the box, but to make the most of your camera, we strongly recommend a higher-capacity memory card, rechargeable batteries, and a carrying case. Compatible accessories for this camera are listed near the top of this page.

    Conclusion
    For serious 35mm SLR users considering a digital camera, the E-20N is a natural choice. The camera feels extremely solid, and controls are logically arranged. Thanks to the high-resolution sensor and fine lens, picture quality is excellent. Admittedly, there are still some areas where the E-20N can't keep up with a film camera, but unless you're a sports or news photographer who needs to blast through a roll of film in five seconds, or someone who requires an unusual lens, this Olympus should offer the features and performance you need. --Shane Burnett

    Pros:

    • 5-megapixel sensor captures filmlike detail
    • Features, appearance, and performance are all similar to a 35mm SLR
    • Dual memory card slots let you choose your format--or load both slots for more capacity

    Cons:

    • Though the lens is of extremely high quality, competitors' models feature detachable lenses
    • Rechargeable batteries and more memory are necessities for long-term use
    ... Read more

    Features

    • 5.2 megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 and beyond
    • 4x optical zoom lens with autofocus
    • Included 32 MB SmartMedia card holds 7 images at default resolution
    • Compatible with SmartMedia and Type I and II CompactFlash
    • Uses 2 disposable lithium batteries (included) or 4 AA batteries; auto-connects with Macs and PCs via USB port

    Reviews (17)

    5-0 out of 5 stars This Is A Camera Not A Toy
    What an amazing machine this is. After suffering through the flimsy plastic trinket cameras with little or no real optical quality, I finally own a truly versatile digital camera. The E-20 (as with the E10) offers extraordinary flexibility in digital photography. Prior to my recent purchase I spent at least a year and a half researching and waiting for this last pixel jump. The E-20 offers all of the flexibility of a high-level SLR which is missing on most other digital cameras.

    Good Points:

    -The feel... It has enough weight for good stability, and it fits your hand very nicely.
    -Excellent lens with the ability to add extenders, filters, what-have-you.
    -Super Image Quality
    -Good bundled software (Adobe PhotoShop Elements and Camedia)
    -Image control
    -SmartMedia, CompactFlash, AND Microdrive compliant with the ability to use more than one card type at a time (you can switch between the cards).
    -True SLR (some competitors offer interchangeable optics, but still have you look through a viewfinder. What's with that? I want to see what I'm taking.).
    -Great accessories! (I can't wait to get the lithium polymer attachment)

    Drawbacks
    -I'll have to get a better strap
    -Flexibility & control vs. ease of use trade-off... there are roughly 30 buttons to learn (but most of us will want that kind of control).
    -It doesn't come with a case... even a cheapie
    -I need to buy stock in a battery company
    -Remembering to turn it off whenever I open the media bay or change power source

    This is probably not the camera you would buy for your instamatic dependent Aunt Sally or Uncle Jimmy-Bob, but if push came to shove you could always tell them to just put the big knob on "P" (Program) and snap away.

    When you pick your camera, don't go by statistics alone (or reviews alone for that matter). You've got to get out there and see how the camera feels in your hands. If you've a history with good quality 35mm SLR's you are going to love the E-20.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent VeriPic compatible camera
    We tested this camera for compatibility with VeriPic. We put it through its paces in all the modes including adjusting manual white balance, IS, PS and Noise Reduction mode, sharpness filter, all combinations of the 5 resolutions and 3 compression modes. The camera performed flawlessly and what amazed us is the camera was very frugal on the batteries. Once set of charged 1600 mah NiMH AA batteries actually got us through 350 pictures! This was a very pleasant supprise. The technical specs also don't mention another gem...There is a large RAM buffer that allows you to take up to 5 FULL mode resolution (5 MegaPixel) photos one after another without waiting for the photos to write to the Compact Flash card! This means you can take photos quickly without having the normal digital camera wait between photos that other cameras have. (The manual lists a 60 ms wait between shutter press and photo capture. This is almost too small to notice and the user will think this camera responds like a 35 mm SLR). The photos look great in FULL resolution JPeg at 1:2.7 compression. Don't use the two TIFF modes because you'll run out of memory card soon and there is no noticable quality difference between the TIFF and JPeg mode so you might as well use JPeg and save some memory. Additionally this camera is VeriPic compatible! That means it is suitable for professional insurance or evidence photography work. We would have given this camera 5 stars instead of 4 except for two things we didn't like about it. The camera is a bit too heavy and hard to lug around unlike the direct competitor (Minolta Dimage 7 which is significantly lighter) and the second drawback is that it is significantly higher price than the Dimage 7. Otherwise it is a great camera!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Olympus E-20N
    I love this camera! This camera is the most like a TTL SL Reflex 35mm camera I've ever seen in a digital camera. The only drawback is how it seems to "go to sleep" between shots, if the shots are not within a few seconds of each other, and then the camera is hard to "wake up." Of course, I am still learning how to use the camera, especially with the built-in flash, and the Olympus dedicated flash. And as far as I am concerned, as a user of Canon and Nikon cameras for many years, I bought this camera because I know that Olympus has made great cameras for as long as I can remember, and the 5 megapixel print quality from its images is excellent.

    5-0 out of 5 stars OLYMPUS BUILDS GREAT PROFESIONAL SLR
    I OWN AN E10 , E20 AND E1 . THEY ALL PRODUCE THE FINEST IMAGES I'VE EVER PRODUCED I'VE WORKED IN A STUDIO FOR 30 YEARS AND USED MANY CAMERAS INCLUDING AS LARGE 11 X 14 VUE CAMERAS . THE IMAGE QUALITY OF THESE CAMERAS IS HARD TO BEAT-THIS IS A GOOD CHOICE FOR ANYONE WHO IS WILLING TO READ THE MANUAL.-- THE OPTICS ARE THE ( BEST ) I'VE EVER HAD.INCLUDING NIKON OR CANON.IF I HAD TO PICK ONE IT WOULD BE THE E1 BECAUSE OF THE CHOICE OF OPTICS BUT FOR ALL AROUND WORK ITS A DRAW.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Best Buy at twice the price.
    At least that is what I paid for the camera. I do most of my shots in camera raw which gives me aproximately 26 pictures on a 256 mg card. Excelent camera for use with Photoshop CS. Flash is weak for any type of professional use. Optics are excellent. The camera gives you the option to point and shoot or have complete control of all aspects of the picture. Untill the price comes down below 10K for a good digital back for my 2 1/4 in cameras, this is a top choice to use. The only thing better today is the E-1 which was not out when I purchased this camera. ... Read more


    9. Minolta Dimage F100 4MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Konica Minolta
    list price: $499.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000067DKB
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Konica Minolta
    Sales Rank: 3019
    Average Customer Review: 4.02 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Features

    • 4.13 megapixel (3.95 effective megapixels) sensor creates 2272 x 1704 images for prints at 8 by 10 inches and beyond
    • 3x optical plus 2.5x digital (7.5x total) zoom lens with autofocus
    • Included 16 MB SD card holds 14 images at default resolution
    • Connects with Macs and PCs via USB connector
    • Features subject tracking autofocus

    Reviews (42)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Compared to the Sony P7 & Canon S230....
    I've have bought both the Sony P7 and the Canon S230 in the past 3 weeks, and took them both back. The Minolta F100 blows them away! If you are considering either of these cameras, be sure to check out the Minolta first. It way more feature-packed.

    The Sony had awful software (totally unusable) and the pictures were all fuzzy on the edges of the subjects - like I shot them with a softening filter. And having to charge the battery inside the camera with the bulky cords was a hassle.

    The Canon, for a $400 camera, has no date stamp imprint! You have to apply it with their software! Sometimes I print right from my printer and don't even involve my PC. Completely unacceptable.

    In comparison, the Minolta offers these added features:

    *It's 4 Megapixels instead of only 3!

    *A separate LCD display of camera settings and options, as well as having the option to display them in your main LCD too. Nice if you don't want your view to be cluttered with settings.

    *I happened to find it alot cheaper online from a reputable major retailer than at the major electronics stores nearby. It came with an extra 64mb card and leather case for less than either the Sony or Canon! :-D

    *It has a movie mode with sound, but you can also attach a voice message to any photo!

    *I like the CR-V3 batteries. My Kodak had them and they don't drain as fast as everyone complains they do. They are not expensive...so just keep an extra handy.

    *I have Windows XP, and had to download a software version updatefrom minolta.com to be able to transfer my photos, but it went smoothly.

    *There are all manual settings too, for those that might want to have that control. My pictures on auto are fantastic.

    *The only thing I don't like is that you have to have the camera in manual mode to have the date imprint. I don't really understand why, but it's a tiny tiny detail. I just put it in that mode but don't change any of the settings it already has - it works just fine.

    You really need to give this camera a look! You won't be disappointed!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Finally took the Plunge!!!!
    After being a die-hard film photographer for the last 20 years, I finally took the plunge and bought a digital camera. After much research, I decided on the Minolta F100. This camera is the perfect size for backpacking and other trips. You will never have to worry about leaving it behind. I was a little disapointed that the camera did not come with an A/C adapter, but I bought an inexpensive SD/MMC memory card reader that connects to my computer via a USB cable. This way the camera does not have to be on in order to download pictures to your computer, thus saving wear and tear on the camera, and saving batteries. Speaking of batteries, I like the fact that the Minolta gives you the option of using AA batteries, which can be a real benefit if you run out of Lithium and/or rechargeable batteries.

    Most importantly, the pictures are great! The camera is easy to use in automatic mode, but you have the option of complete control in manual, aperture priority, and shutter priority modes.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Great stills, but non-Windows compatible video format
    This is a good camera for awesome still photos, but don't get too close; tend to be blurry. And even in macro mode, you have to be perfectly still (tripod) as well as your subject. The lens did get stuck once, but has worked fine since.
    My biggest pet peeve is that the video only records in .mov format. Only RealOne can play that. I cannot use it with Windows Movie Maker, as only Macs can. I wish it could have an option to record in .avi or .mpg formats.
    So, when my husband lost it a month ago, I was a bit upset, but glad that now I can get a camcorder that records in a Windows compatable format and that takes stills as well. I will not buy any Minoltas until they offer those formats. It is very important to me; I have 3 children that are growing fast.
    And I also have one more pet peeve: everytime your batteries die or you remove them, you have to reset your date and time. VERY annoying! No memory battery to keep data you entered. This camera is good, but with a few minor improvements, it can be awesome.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good camera, but not for action shots
    This is my first digital camera. I have been a film guy for 30+ years and have lots of 35mm equipment.

    The picture quality is better than I expected. I regularly do 8X10s, and if you don't compress the files, they look pretty good.

    My only complaint is that the camera takes forever to turn on, turn off, focus and shoot. I'm used to getting candid and action shots "from the hip", and have missed many opportunities with this camera.

    I have had no mechanical, electronic or optical problems.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good product, bad details
    In general, I like this camera, but I have one major complaint. (You can read about other complaints in the rest of the reviews.) The file memory feature is sub-par on this camera. Basically, if your batteries die, your file memory function will reset itself, and the numbering gets screwy. It seems minor, but it's a real pain if you like to have all of your pictures numbered nicely, and honestly, Minolta should have designed their camera with this simple thing in mind. ... Read more


    10. Canon PowerShot G2 4MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Canon Cameras US
    list price: $699.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005Q5U5
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Canon Cameras US
    Sales Rank: 1257
    Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Quite simply, the Canon PowerShot G2 is an elegant, easy-to-use joy of a digital camera that boasts impressive 4-megapixel resolution, a 3x optical zoom, a bright LCD monitor that swivels off to the side of the camera and tilts up and down as needed, and maximum overall creative control in addition to a fully automatic mode. Of course, none of this comes as much of a surprise to anyone familiar with its popular predecessor, the PowerShot G1. Both of these cameras have features and picture-taking modes similar to Canon's EOS cameras, which means they have what Canon calls a "very camera-like feel." Some of the G2's more obvious improvements over the G1 (besides higher resolution) include a champagne gold finish, larger grip for easier handling, improved image and color quality, new photo-effect shooting mode for various effects, including black-and-white and sepia, and a new high-speed selectable three-point autofocus.

    The G2's 4-megapixel CCD captures images at user-selectable resolutions of 2,272 x 1,704, 1,600 x 1,200, 1,024 x 768, and 640 x 480. This range allows for detail-rich 8-by-10-inch prints that match the results of film cameras as well as easy-to-upload images for the Web and e-mail. Choose between three varying degrees of JPEG compression or store images in the 10-bit RAW data file format for faster transfer without any image quality loss. Your computer easily translates the RAW files into TIFF files using Canon's included software.

    The telescoping, 3x optical zoom lens (34-102mm equivalent on a 35mm camera) with 3.6x digital zoom, offers both automatic and manual focus control. The improved, high-speed, selectable three-point autofocus system allows flexibility in composition over the single focus point of the G1. A distance scale has been added on the LCD monitor for precision focus adjustment that works best for extreme close-ups. Improved circuitry allows the G2 to perform these advanced functions with faster image capture times and longer battery life than the G1.

    Like the G1, the G2 has point-and-shoot settings that take the guesswork out of almost all situations, but the manual controls and creative options are where this camera stands out from the competition. Twelve EOS-style shooting modes allow for a wide range of creative possibilities, with manual focus zoom, adjustable aperture priority at 50, 100, 200, and 400 ISO, selectable shutter speed, and six preset white balances--sunny, cloudy, tungsten, etc. Canon has provided four presets for professional results when shooting for maximum depth of field, portraits, landscapes, and night scenes. Other creative controls include the photo-effect mode that allows four possible variations of the normal color saturation: vivid color, standard color, sepia tones, and standard black-and-white.

    Two video formats have also been included, allowing for 30 and 120 seconds of moving images with audio. Slow shutter-speed mode allows extended exposures in low-light situations. Autoexposure bracketing allows you to intentionally over- and underexpose two extra shots to help capture the best picture possible. Five different flash modes, including red-eye reduction, handle after-dark challenges. The TTL hot shoe is fully compatible with all Canon EX-series Speedlite flashes. The included software package goes beyond standard image processing with a remote capture function that allows complete control and manipulation of the camera functions from your computer keyboard. Canon's Stitch Assist program allows you to combine up to four images into one, seamless, panoramic view.

    Exterior design features include the highly versatile LCD monitor from the G1 that needs no improvement; its 270-degree rotation allows all angles of image composition from around corners to self-portraits. Changes in ergonomics, as requested by the users of the G1, include a contoured grip for better one-handed shooting and a more streamlined look. Photographers new to the digital market will find the G2 as easy to use as previous PowerShot models, while professionals will be pleased with the improved selection of creative options for capturing the best possible images.

    The G2 comes complete with USB port and cable for connection to PC or Macintosh computers; Canon's digital camera software package for downloading, processing, and organizing your images; a NTSC cable for connecting to a television set; a rechargeable BP-511 lithium-ion battery pack and AC adapter for charging the battery in the camera; a generous 32 MB CompactFlash card; infrared remote control; lens cap; and neck strap. The camera weighs about 14.8 ounces, and its dimensions are 4.8(W) by 3.0(H) by 2.5(D) inches. ... Read more

    Features

    • 4.1 megapixel sensor creates 2,272 x 1,704 images for prints at 8 x 10 and beyond
    • 3x optical (plus 3.6x digital) zoom lens with autofocus
    • Included 32 MB CompactFlash card holds 24 images at default resolution; camera is Microdrive compatible
    • Movie mode captures variable amount of video depending upon memory card size
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery (included); connects with Macs and PCs via USB port

    Reviews (150)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Canon G2 -The BEST digital camera for under $1000US! Period!
    The Canon PowerShot G2 is a digital camera consumer's dream come true, and a nightmare for other digital camera manufacturers.

    Make a list of features you'd expect and not expect to find from a "prosumer" digital camera, and chances are you'll find them on the G2. This is a little camera that was designed to act a lot bigger than many other digital cameras in its class.

    You only have to pick up a G2 to realize that there's a lot more to it than meets the eye; this camera's significantly heavier and feels sturdier than any other camera in its class! The extra weight means better camera stabilization. The G2's sturdiness inspires confidence and makes the camera feel like a photographic tool, not an electronic gizmo.

    From the tilt-and-swivel LCD, the magnification loupe for manual focusing, dedicated and fully functional flash hot-shoe, evaluative metering, IR autofocous assist mechanism, ISO 50, RAW image format, etc., etc., this camera has it all!.

    Many photographers will argue that the real measures of any camera lie in the controls and results. The G2 doesn't disappoint in either of these respects. Although you'll have to familiarize yourself with the camera's controls initially, you'll soon find them very intuitive and actually use them more often than not.

    The quality of images captured with the G2 is nothing short of superb! You'll get clean, detailed, very high-resolution photographs with the G2, especially if you use the camera's RAW mode at ISO 50.

    The Canon PowerShot G2 is still a point-and-shoot digital camera. Anyone who's ever used an SLR will miss the optical viewfinder, true manual focus, and lens selection not available in the G2. However, this can be said for any other digital camera in the G2's class. In every other respect, the G2 rises above its inherent limitations and really challenges its competition to try and keep up!

    Beyond the camera itself, Canon has really done the consumer proud by offering most every accessory that you would want included at no extra charge, i.e. an remote control unit, high-capacity rechargeable Lithium Ion battery, and remote capture software.

    If you're in the market for a capable digital camera at a reasonable price, thank Canon for making the choice really very simple.

    Positives:
    - extensive feature set
    - excellent build and design
    - superb results, especially in RAW mode at ISO 50
    - Excellent lens produces very little distortion and chromatic aberrations
    - extremely reasonable price
    - All the accessories that should come standard do come standard.

    Negatives:
    - Certain exposure adjustments, i.e. flash compensation, aren't available in full manual mode.
    - The fact that the G2 isn't an SLR.
    - Not much else.

    5-0 out of 5 stars One of the Best on the Market
    After months of exhaustive searching, I finally decided to purchase the Canon Powershot G2 (it's a wonderfully re-designed upgrade to the Powershot G1). The clarity of the images that this camera takes is spectacular. Combine that with the list of outstanding features that aren't included on any other digital camera: ISO 50, RAW image capture, a flip out LCD screen (which is much more handy than you would think), an infrared remote for long exposures and self-portraits, and easy menu functions -- this camera is without equal in it's price range.

    It's definitely not for the beginner, but, if you're familiar with photography, you'll be able to take sharp, beautiful pictures with this camera. Skin tones are perfect and the built in flash with exposure compensation does a good job for portraits. And, if you're considering a Sony, this camera uses the more inexpensive Compact Flash memory storage system. Compact Flash memory cards are cheaper than the Sony Memory Stick and are compatible with more peripherals than Memory Stick.

    All in all, if it's in your price range, you will be very pleased with the Canon Powershot G2.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Digital Camera with the je ne sais quoi!
    There is something about this camera, and its hard to say what exactly, that makes it a joy to use and its owners fiercely loyal. I bought the black body in a kit that came with a sporty real leather wrap-around case and a 96Mb compact flash card to go along with the 32Mb card the camera body came with. This was a great deal at only about fifty dollars over the normal camera price.

    To begin with, the camera looks and handles like a classic camera, which is what none of the other 4 or 5 megapixel cameras can boast, with the exception of the Leica Digilux 1. It has heft and controls which please the eyes and fingers of dyed in the wool 35mm photographers like myself.

    Secondly, it delivers on image quality. Check the stats from the photography magazines and online camera reviews. The G2 comes out on top every time in its category, period. Sharpness, color accuracy, and contrast are all excellent.

    Thirdly, Canon delivers superb software with their product. Zoombrowser EX is a well thought-out program that allows the user to group, sort, modify, print or show slides of images with ease. It also coordinates well with Adobe Photoshop (a full version of which Canon also supplies!).

    Lastly, there are the little things that make a photographer happy if they are present in a digital camera and sad if they are absent. Happily they are all present in the G2: long, long battery life; excellently sharp and fast autofocus; accurate evaluative metering; manual override of autofocus; manual exposure control; the ability to add filters and other lenses (close-up, wide angle and tele); the truly wonderful swiveling LCD screen; and the ability to attach an accessory flash.

    Is this camera perfect? Of course not, but I think it is the closest thing to an instant classic the digital world has come up with and will still be used by its happy adherents when its contemporaries have hit the ash can long ago.

    I am a faithful Nikon 35mm camera buff (using the F5 and N80 bodies extensively), but I crossed the line on this one baby! Check out all the reviews of its competitors. None of them compare.

    5-0 out of 5 stars What we all NEED! Better than it's descendant the G3
    I have had this camera for more than a year and I am just now getting to write a review. Which means I have had much time and practice to test this camera.
    This camera is very much in the middle and by that I don't mean just ok. It is not to hot and it is not too cold, it is "just right!" It has features and manual controls for those who like to manipulate their shots, but in the same respect if you are used to just snapping a picture with one button and letting the camera do the work, then this camera is for you too! The image quality is great! You can buy accessories and extra lenses for it just like those hot shots with expensive film cameras! I have 3 lenses and two filtering lenses(polarizing and UV filter.) One of my extra lenses is a macro lens which really is wonderful. Which brings me to the point that the camera's macro capabilities are wonderful as is! If you don't know what macro means, I can take a picture of those unsightly pores it gets so close. I have taken some wonderful nature photographs with the macro. I love up-close, detailed pics. This camera has a little bit of everything but not too much it is overwhelming. If you want to use it, it is there and if you don't keep it on automatic! The best part is that there have been two cameras in the "G" line that have been introduced since the G2 but they aren't as good as this one(in my opinion.) So the price has dropped dramatically you can get one for less than 300 if you know where to look.

    I just cannot stress enough how much this camera has been in service to me. I never even used a regular film camera before I got this camera because I never had the money to get a really good one. Sure I took the occasional pic with my aunt's point and shoot film camera at Christmas, but that wasn't much fun. When I got this camera I just experimented and took soooooooo many pictures. I am really enjoying photography. I guess the reason I never got interested in photography before was the expense of film and then developing, as well as not being sure the pictures were even any good until you got them back from the drug store. With this camera you just look at the shots and if they stink you delete them and take another shot. No wasted film! IF you don't have a printer at home then you can easily take them to Walgreens or upload them to Walmart's site and get prints from your digi pics. So simple.

    I have experimented with many consumer valued digital cameras when I took my photography class last year( which was the reason I bought this camera) and let me tell you, it was the best in the class. We had Kodak and Olympus and so many other brands and they all stunk compared to mine. Olympus C something was pretty comparable but still not as good as my G2. I would recommend this camera to the new aspiring photographer as well as to the family photographer who wants to capture all the good things. I am sure once we become professional photographers we will have a SLR digital camera but for anyone less than a professional who is actually getting paid for their pictures, this is the best quality at the best price. When printed on photo quality paper my digital pictures are as good as if not better than other film photographer's pictures. I have been told my shots are good enough to be in National Geographic! Have fun with this joyful contraption.

    5-0 out of 5 stars excellent photo qualtiy with this Canon GS2
    I have had my canon for almost a year now, and I just want all to know who are looking for a camera, that there are a lot of cameras out there that you will not be satisfied with if you are looking for excellent photo quality.. this camera creates beautiful pictures, and they are easy to load on the computer with included software, and when I order prints, they look like they were done professionaly. this camera is not for someone who wants a camera you can slide in your pocket, it is an amatuers camera and is made for good quality picture taking, it can be attached to a tripod, and is intened for light duty amatuer photos, however, if you dont mind the weight of it, it is great for all your picture taking needs, and it really isnt that heavy, just not as slender as the little pocket cameras, same with the G3 by canon, anyway defientely an A+ on this one. ... Read more


    11. Olympus Camedia D-550 3MP Digital Camera w/ 2.8x Optical Zoom
    by Olympus
    list price: $449.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000068BRB
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Olympus
    Sales Rank: 1559
    Average Customer Review: 3.98 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Sporting a similar design to previous Olympus D-series digicams, the D-550 Zoom features a 3-megapixel CCD, 2.8x optical zoom, and a 3.6x digital zoom. With its familiar film-camera style and high-resolution imagery, the D-550 is a great choice for vacation photos as well as family snapshots.

    Optics and Resolution
    The DS-550's 3-megapixel sensor captures ample detail for sharp prints at sizes up to 8 by 10 inches. For a serious amateur photographer, 3 megapixels is a great resolution, providing enough detail to perform some cropping and still have crisp prints.

    The all-glass autofocus Olympus lens has a 2.8x zoom range that's equivalent to a 36-100mm zoom lens on a 35mm camera. For technophiles, its aperture ranges from f2.9 to f4.4 depending on the zoom setting, with a normal focal range from 2.6 feet to infinity. There's also a 3.6x digital zoom, but remember that digital zoom tends to reduce the sharpness and detail of your image, so it's best used sparingly.

    To compose your images, either use the traditional camera viewfinder or the 1.8-inch LCD display (also used to review the shots you've taken). Having both types of viewfinders offers the best of both worlds: if you're used to a film camera or want to conserve battery life, use the viewfinder. If you want to see exactly the picture you'll be capturing, use the LCD display.

    More Features
    A sliding clamshell lens cover simultaneously protects the D-550's lens and provides a simple way to turn the camera on and off, and the all-plastic body feels both lightweight and durable. While the D-550 offers automatic settings for point-and-shooters and beginning photographers, there are several manual features for more adventurous photographers, including macro mode, adjustable white-balance settings, exposure compensation, and the ability to shoot black-and-white and sepia images.

    Power
    Power is provided by four AA batteries (alkalines are included). We recommend getting a set or two of rechargeable nickel metal hydride (NiMH) batteries and a charger. A digital camera will kill a set of alkaline batteries extremely quickly, especially if you're using the camera's LCD display, so they aren't recommended except in a pinch. To ensure you'll always be ready for action, we recommend having two sets of rechargeables so you can always have one set in the camera and the other set in the charger.

    Movie Mode
    In movie mode, the camera captures silent video clips at resolutions of either 320 x 240 pixels (up to 33 seconds per movie) or 160 x 120 pixels (up to 148 seconds per movie). The limited duration and resolution of your movies guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative.

    Storage and Transfer
    Images are stored on SmartMedia memory cards. The included 16 MB card holds approximately 21 images at the camera's default settings. SmartMedia cards are reusable, but if you tend to take more than 21 images per outing (or plan to use the video feature much), then you'll want a bigger card. A 64 MB card will store well over 100 pictures. With most cameras, the brand of memory card you use is irrelevant, but genuine Olympus cards have a panorama feature not found on cards from other manufacturers. This feature makes it easier to stitch together a series of pictures you've taken into a single panoramic photo, and may justify the slightly higher price of the card if it's a feature you plan to use frequently.

    To transfer images to your computer, simply attach the included USB cable between your PC and your camera. Your computer should automatically recognize your camera and let you move the pictures to your hard drive.

    Size
    At 4.6 by 2.6 by 2 inches and 8.5 ounces, the D-550 is fairly thin and small, making it easy to bring along on outings--but it won't easily fit in your shirt pocket.

    Contents and Recommended Accessories
    The package includes the camera, 16 MB SmartMedia card, four AA alkaline batteries, USB cable, video cable, carrying strap, and software on CD.

    Everything you need to get started is included in the box, but we recommend these accessories to make the most of your camera: a carrying case, a set of NiMH rechargeable size AA batteries, and a higher-capacity SmartMedia memory card. Compatible accessories for this camera are listed near the top of this page. ... Read more

    Features

    • 3-megapixel sensor captures enough detail to create prints up to 11 x 14
    • 2.8x optical plus 3.6x digital (10x total) zoom lens with autofocus
    • Included 16 MB Smartmedia card stores 21 images at default settings
    • Movie mode captures up to 33 seconds of video with no audio
    • Uses 2 CR-V3 lithium batteries or 4 AA batteries (rechargeables recommended); connects with Macs and PCs via USB port

    Reviews (57)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Wished I had this when I was in Europe!!!
    Olympus has a great reputation with their 35mm and now that reputation is passed on to their digital cameras.
    The camera feels very sturdy except for the shutter door which I do agree needs a new design.
    However after the initial akwardness of the shutter door, it doesn't become much of a big deal. You just get used to it.

    What's great is that the pictures turn out ABSOLUTELY WONDERFULL if you choose
    the HQ (high quality) or SQ function which takes up a bit of memory. Therefore I highly recommend getting
    a 128MB smart media card which lets you take 173 photos and short 30 seconds movie clips (no sound)!
    Also I do recommend getting the rechargeable battery and adaptor because the LCD eats up all your battery juice.

    I do recommend this camera if you are thinking of getting a digital camera that is reliable and affordable.
    It has a lot of potential and features that you can explore but I'm a point-and-shoot type of person.

    5-0 out of 5 stars For me, the perfect digital camera
    I've tried out many different digital cameras over the last three or four years, from Kodak to Olympus to Canon to odd ones like HP. I've tried cameras that cost anything from $150 to $1000. So, when it came time for me to give up my never-used 35mm Canon SLR, I knew exactly which digital camera I wanted to replace it with.

    A few years back, I tried out a friend's Olympus Camedia camera with the same body as this one. It was only in the 2-megapixel range, as opposed to the 3 megapixels of this model, but I was always really impressed with the quality of picture it took. For a point and shoot digital camera, the shots were just amazing.

    So I didn't have to look very far before I found this camera, the Camedia D-550. And it's certainly lived up to the expectations I'd developed from using the friend's camera.

    In my opinion, this is what really makes this camera stand out from its competition:

    ' It looks and feels like a camera. Some digital cameras go out of their way to be all futuristic and oddly shaped, which I find annoying. I want to be able to hold a camera with my hands, not my fingertips.

    ' The design of the navigation software is excellent. I've used cameras that go to the extremes of interface design, and I've hated it. I used a Kodak camera once that used menus and control panels that were so big and colorful, it was like it was designed by Fisher-Price. Sure, it looked friendlier to use at first, but when I actually tried to find anything, like how to change the size of my pictures, it was too big and clunky. On the other extreme, some companies make cameras that use a completely bare and technical interface that's impossible to understand. With the Camedia D-550, all of your important tools are no more than two button presses away, thanks to the intuitive design of the interface. If you want to switch to Macro mode, you just turn the camera on and press "Up" twice. If you want to change the size of the pictures you're taking, you just hit the menu button and press left on the wheel that pops up, and you'll see a nice list. Not too invasive, not too technical.

    ' Streamlined features. A few years ago, it became popular to pack as many different things into a camera as you possibly could. Sound recorders! Movie cameras! PDAs! Cell phones! Put everything you'd ever want in one device! I thought this was a terrible idea. If you want a video camera, get a video camera. A still camera can't possibly hold more than a tiny clip, so why even bother? While this Camedia D-550 does come with the ability to take video clips, it doesn't assume that video will be your primary use of the camera like other models sometimes do. The feature is there, but you can easily ignore it.

    ' Rugged body design. Olympus sells a similar Camedia to this in features and price, but a different body. I borrowed one for a weekend, and was constantly having trouble with the lens that stuck out of the camera body. The lens cap would fall off all the time, and I just wasn't careful enough with it. When I had my 35mm SLR, I just put a UV filter over the glass of the real lens, and didn't worry about scratching it, but you couldn't do that with the other Camedia lens. With the D-550, you avoid the problem entirely. When you turn the camera off, the lens retracts into the body of the camera, and is covered by the sliding panel that's part of the camera body. It's a brilliant design that keeps the lens safe, and the speed of the lens movement is quick enough that it's not annoying. I love that my camera is so tough. Though I haven't dropped it yet, I have the feeling it would survive a drop just fine.

    ' And, of course, the image quality. Even with plain old point-and-shoot simplicity, the colors are vivid and sharp, the exposure is just right, and the low-light pictures are just incredible, which is important to me as a hater of flashbulbs. The other day, a bird fell down our chimney and got trapped in the upper grill of our fireplace, beyond where we could see. So I stuck the camera up into the fireplace and had someone point a dim flashlight where we thought the bird was, and I got a pretty decent picture of it! The bird ended up getting out of the fireplace and flying out the window just fine, by the way. :-) The macro feature is pretty cool, too. My desktop picture on my computer is a photo of an ant I took with my D-550. People are really impressed that the ant takes up 3 inches on my screen.

    When you consider all the excellent features this camera has, then realize that it's much less expensive than similar cameras, it seems like a no-brainer. I would have easily paid twice what I did for the D-550, and still felt like I was getting a great deal. This camera is going to last me a long, long time, and I'm loving every minute of it.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Save your $$$$$
    Photo's are good, but software ain't.

    I've owned the Camedia 550 for a little over a year. I am very disapointed in the software that you HAVE to use with this camera. I upgraded to the "professional" edition, but it's still bad. It does not alow you to back up your photo's onto CD. (Floppy Disk Only, which is worthless). Also I have pixels dying on my viewing screen.
    It is difficult to manuver through the options on the camera. Also uses a Smart Media Card, which the new ones do not use, and very few new camera do use, so I'll be stuck with $200 bucks worth of Smart Media Cards when I decide to chuck this thing.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Money Well Spent
    I bought this camera a year ago; it has served me well in many different environments and in both nighttime and blazing sun conditions. Downloads are swift with either the 3.5 inch flash path floppy or USB. Picture quality is great at low compression settings, higher settings are even better. I use a 64 MB memory card and that is more than adequate for my needs. Battery life is impressive: one charge was good for a 2 week vacation, and that included at least one hour of time viewing pictures with relatives on the built-in screen. Easy to use. Documentation is a bit on the slim side, but sufficient, with the exception of instructions on taking a panoramic picture. Apparently, that info is on the CD. We've taken 1,200 pics or so, no problems.

    5-0 out of 5 stars great camera
    I bought this camera 18 months ago, and it takes GREAT pictures. I have taken thousands of pictures with this camera with no problem. The two only drwabacks to this camera is its size and it takes a second or two to save the picture to the card, but that's the way it is.
    On the other hand, the reason why it is so big is because it uses regular batteries=cheap! However, battery life is great.
    Would recommend this camera to anyone who needs a digital camera. ... Read more


    12. Canon PowerShot S110 2MP Digital ELPH Camera Kit with 2x Optical Zoom
    by Canon
    list price: $599.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005LB8P
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Canon
    Sales Rank: 1910
    Average Customer Review: 4.61 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Canon's update to the PowerShot S100, the PowerShot S110, packs a high-quality digital camera into the tiny, elegant body of Canon's Digital Elph series. The idea behind the Elph line is simple: create a camera small enough to slip into a shirt pocket, so you can take it anywhere. To improve upon the impressive specs of the original, Canon upgraded the image processor, making it both faster and more effective in maximizing color fidelity and saturation. Additionally, the S110 has the ability to record QuickTime movies. A new, tiny microphone is embedded in the front of the camera.

    The basics include 2-megapixel resolution (1,600 x 1,200 image resolution) for high-quality photos and prints up to 8 by 10 inches; an all-glass aspherical 2x zoom lens (and a 2.5x digital zoom as well). A 1.5-inch LCD monitor displays most camera settings with easy-to-understand icons and minimal text. The built-in flash uses a light guide and does not need a Fresnel lens or a large reflector, making the camera even more compact.

    The PowerShot S110 stores images on an included 8 MB CompactFlash card. Adobe PhotoDeluxe and PhotoStitch control image management, editing, compositing, and printing, while ZoomBrowser EX or ImageBrowser produce self-running screen slide shows, automatic e-mail preparation, and auto layout. The camera uses a high-speed plug-and-play USB interface, plus it has NTSC-out so you can view your photos on your TV. It's fully compatible with both Mac and PC platforms. ... Read more

    Features

    • 2.1 megapixel sensor captures 1600 x 1200 stills for prints up to 8 x 10
    • 2x optical plus 2.5x digital zoom lens with autofocus
    • Included 8 MB CompactFlash card holds 12 images at default resolution
    • Connects with Macs and PCs via USB port
    • Rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery included

    Reviews (155)

    5-0 out of 5 stars What a FANTASTIC little camera!
    I was a bit skeptical at first - I don't know why, maybe because of it's unbelievably tiny size, but I've always relied on Canon for quality cameras. This one hasn't disappointed me one bit!

    I can see where it might be a problem for some men, since the tiny size could be completely lost in a large hand. If you need a comparison, this camera is the *exact* size and shape as a pack of cigarettes.

    After years of lugging a big camera bag on vacation & to family events, carrying this camera is a huge relief! I added a 64MB compact flash card, and set at the highest resolution (1600x1200), I can take ~65 photos on one card. And the quality is wonderful - I can print an 8x10 (using an Epson Stylus Photo 820) that the average eye would never know was digital.

    This camera is also very "user friendly". I'm the type of person who will only resort to reading the manual when all else fails. I've not needed the manual AT ALL with this camera, other than to confirm what I was able to figure out on my own and to make sure I wasn't missing anything (I wasn't).

    Some recommended accessories:

    1) A spare battery. Using the digital display alot will burn through a battery rather quickly.

    2) If you'll be using the higher resolution and/or video capture, get a high-capacity compact flash (64MB recommended).

    3) Canon Soft Compact Case PSC 100. It holds the camera, a spare compact flash card and spare battery and still fits right in my purse.

    Bottom line: Money well spent for an excellent quality point & shoot digital.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Powerful, stylish and easy to use - what else can I say?
    I will just give a brief technical review based on my experience for non-techy person. Here's the Pro:
    - Battery last for 90 mins (about 100 pics with LCD + short review) after 130 charge (from fully discharge).
    - LCD refresh rate is excellent
    - Flash good until 3m (about 9.8 ft), good for outdoor (very good for camera this size)
    - Small size yet has 2x optical zoom & movie capture capability (very good quality) - its so convenient comparing to my other experience using 5 other digicam (I'm a photographer)
    - Lots of features (very usefull), too long to be listed here

    Contra:
    - Charging battery is longer than it's good for
    - Flash not promising on indoor environment

    Conclusion:
    - Best point-and-shoot digicam ever for novice/teenager
    - Get 2nd battery ... - its worth [it]
    - Use at least 128MB CF to get the most

    5-0 out of 5 stars Lights. Camera. Action!
    I've had this camera for almost two years and I love it.

    It's the perfect first camera for users who are comfortable with technology. There are simpler (and cheaper) cameras for people who are less compfortable with technology.

    This one packs the right amount of sophistication in features, and simplicity in usage - and all that in one small little bundle!

    It's strong points:
    * small.
    * light.
    * solid (dropped mine a couple of times and its still going strong).
    * good zoom.
    * good battery life.
    * auto-flash - which is so helpful for amateurs like myself who are never sure about how much light is enough.
    * some more advanced ones (manual flash, timer, etc.) if you want to experiment and improve your skills.
    * comes with software to download and retouch your photos, rendering the process relatively easy.

    All in all, this camera and Canon's Powershot line are an excellent choice for most people.

    5-0 out of 5 stars s110 digital camera review
    This little camera packs a big punch. The picture quality seems better than 2.1MP. There is only one thing i can complain about, and that is the battery which barely lasts at all.

    5-0 out of 5 stars best for the price
    this camera is great for the price. for someone who loves taking leisure pictues, this camera is great. it's small and durable enough to put in your pocket of purse, made with a metal strong casing. this camera is light-weight and easy to use. some other cameras are hard to figure out and not user friendly, this camera is easy to use, you can figure out how to use it in just a few minutes of playing around with it. This camera does a lot, what's the point in spending more on another camera, 2.0megapixels lets you take clear photos up to 5x7 or 8x10, what more do you really honestly need? you'd be wasting your money if you would be buying a digital camera with features you don't even use. This is the more practical camera. It has a great zoom, easy to use and carry around design, great flash. takes wonderful pictures. ... Read more


    13. Canon PowerShot A40 2MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Canon Cameras US
    list price: $399.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006412G
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Canon Cameras US
    Sales Rank: 1881
    Average Customer Review: 4.55 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Despite its entry-level designation in Canon's digital lineup, the2-megapixel A40 is a surprisingly advanced model with excellent picture qualityand more manual features than you'll find on most digital point-and-shoots.

    Resolution
    With resolutions of up to 5 megapixels now available in other cameras, the2-megapixel chip in the A40 may seem wimpy, but for the camera's intended user,2 million pixels is a great balance between performance and price. Thisresolution means gorgeous full-screen images on your computer (even with a19-inch monitor) and prints that look great at sizes up to 8 by 10 inches. Ifyou're hoping for a camera that captures even detail in each photo, considerCanon's 3-megapixel S30 or 4-megapixel S40.

    Optics
    A 3x optical zoom lens (35-105mm equivalent) aids in photo composition, and anadditional 2.5x digital zoom (7.5x total) further magnifies your image.Remember, however, that digital zoom reduces the sharpness and detail of yourimage, so it's best used sparingly. Two systems help ensure your pictures willbe perfectly focused, even in challenging conditions: a multizone autofocusworks even when the subject of your photo isn't in the center of the scene, andin low-light situations (a particular weakness of many digital cameras), afocus-assist lamp sends out a small patterned beam to help the camera accuratelydetermine distance.

    More Features
    Though it's primarily designed as a point-and-shoot, the A40 includes asurprising number of advanced features for photographers who want more creativecontrol, including aperture priority, shutter priority, and full manual modes,exposure compensation, low-light manual shutter speeds, manual ISO and whitebalance, and stitch assist, plus black-and-white, sepia, vivid, and neutralmodes.

    A movie mode captures video clips with sound. Depending upon resolution, theseclips can last from 10 to 30 seconds. The limited length and resolution of theseclips guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it'sperfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to afriend or relative.

    The A40 is the successor to last year's A20. Physically, the two cameras arenearly identical, but the new model has substantially more manual controls and amovie mode.

    Power
    The A40 uses four AA batteries, and a set of alkalines is included. We don'trecommend using alkaline batteries in digital cameras unless you have noalternative, since the high power demands of digital cameras drain alkalinebatteries ridiculously quickly. Instead, we prefer lithium batteries foroccasional users, since these last much longer and also stay fresh if yourcamera sits unused for months at a time. If you use the camera more than onceevery couple of weeks, we strongly recommend getting a set of rechargeable NiMHbatteries and a charger. These can be recharged hundreds of times and hold anexcellent charge, but will lose their power in as little as a month of disuse.Many people solve this problem by purchasing a charger with two sets ofbatteries, keeping one set in the camera and the other in the charger at alltimes.

    Storage and Transfer
    Images are stored on standard Type I CompactFlash cards. Consider the included 8MB card a starter capacity, since its 12-picture limit means you'll need toreturn to your computer often to transfer images and free up the card for morepictures. A 128 MB card is a great size for this camera, storing around 200images. To transfer images to your computer, simply attach the included USBcable between your PC and your camera. Your computer should automaticallyrecognize your camera and let you move the pictures to your hard drive.

    Printing
    Canon has introduced a series of printers designed to work directly with theA40. Using these printers, no computer is required--simply connect the camera tothe printer and start printing. The CP-10 produces credit-card-sized prints, andthe CP-100 makes 4-by-6-inch prints. Both use continuous-tone technology forresults that are indistinguishable from traditional photos. Of course, photosfrom your camera can also be printed on any home computer system with an inkjetprinter, sent off for online processing, or simply enjoyed on your computerscreen.

    Size
    Dimensions of 4.3 by 2.8 by 1.5 inches put the A40 in the middle of thecompact-camera pack. The plastic body keeps weight down to 8.8 ounces.

    Contents and Recommended Accessories

    The package includes the A40 camera, AV and USB cables, wrist strap, printedmanual, software suite, four AA batteries, and an 8 MB memory card.

    Everything you need to get started is included in the box, but a few well-chosenaccessories can help you get even more from your camera. We strongly recommendthe addition of a larger memory card (a 128 MB card holds around 200 images), aset of rechargeable batteries, and a carrying case. A broad array of additionalaccessories are available, including a waterproof housing, an adapter forthreaded lenses, and more. ... Read more

    Features

    • 2-megapixel sensor captures 1,600 x 1,200 images for prints at sizes up to 8 x 10 inches
    • 3x optical plus 2.5x digital (7.5x total) autofocus zoom lens
    • Included 8 MB CompactFlash card holds 12 images at default resolution
    • Automatically connects with Macs and PCs via USB port
    • Uses 4 AA batteries (alkalines included)

    Reviews (131)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Impressive Camera
    I'm new to digital photography and was very impressed with Canon's A40. The camera has similar features to the proven A20 model, but distinguishes itself in several ways.

    For example, the A40 feels solid and is very attractive. It also captures 10-30 second movie clips in AVI format which can be played on Quicktime. The movie images are a bit grainy, but movements and sounds are captured quite well. Using some software which was included with the A40, I was able to convert the AVI clips into MPEG and view them on my PocketPC. Finally, the camera is less expensive than the A20, but delivers the same quality images.

    My experience with the A40 pictures is that 2Mexapixels are fine. The clarity of the images is remarkable. And making short movie clips is an added benefit to getting the A40.

    For the price and photo quality, the A40 is an exceptional product and deserves everyone of its 5 stars.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great Camera at a Great Price
    PROS:
    The Cannon A40 is definately a good quality digital camera at a good price. Compatible with the latest PC Windows versions (except for Windows Professional 2000) although specifically designed for Windows XP which is good since almost ever PC sold in retail stores today comes with Windows XP. Very easy to install in your computer. The software runs itself. Very easy to take excellent quality pictures. Photos look great even when printing on standard paper with a standard Inkjet printer. Large variety of photo functions. Automatic focus. Good automatic lighting capabilities with various flash options for taking excellent pictures at night. Colors and subjects are rich and clear. Pictures don't look animated. Short movie capabilities. Red-eye removal. Self timer. 3x Zoom option. A very durable and attractive camera. Good quality brand name.

    CONS:
    Weighs a little more and not as compact as similar cameras with the same capabilities. Software provided doesn't allow for many adjustment options to pictures taken when transferred to PC. Instruction booklet is long and a little intimidating. Camera itself only comes with a 8MB Compact Flash Card(about 8 photos). Need to buy another Card with a larger memory. Batteries drain quickly (which is true with almost every digital camera). Doesn't come with carrying case. Menus on LCD screen are not very user friendly while controls on the back of the camera are a little too busy and intimidating. Not a camera for people who don't like to read instructions.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Great Camera For The Novice Or Pro
    Almost everything I've read about this camera (the good and the bad) is true. However, in my opinion, most of the bad things are either good to me, or just a problem with digital cameras in general.

    The good -
    Solidly built (I like a little weight to my camera)
    Great night shots (if set properly you can even take pics of the stars)
    Great manual controls (if you want to use them)
    3x Optical Zoom (don't even bother with the digital)
    Nice movie mode (w/sound)
    Good automatic focus (95% of the time)
    Just great looking pictures.

    The bad (or at least what some say is bad) -
    Big and a bit heavy (a plus to me)
    Extensive documentation (a plus to me)
    Only 8 mb CF storage (Buy at least 128 mb)
    Comes with 4 AA batteries (Buy rechargeable)
    Occasionally has some trouble auto focusing inside (but not too often and the pics still look good)

    I have used or owned cameras by Olympus, Kodak and Sony and would rate this camera as good as any Sony (in the price range) and better than any Olympus or Kodak

    Overall I am extremely happy with this camera and would recommend to anyone.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Picture Quality - Great for Average User
    I have been shopping for a digital camera for about 6 months now and was told that I should get at least a 3-4MP camera. Since I had not been able to afford one yet, I borrowed this camera from my father and took it on vacation with me. It was quick to learn, easy to use, convenient and had all the features I needed. The most surprising thing was the quality of the photos when I got back home. It self adjusted so well to different lighting and there isn't a single photo out of the 180 that I took that needs to be adjusted. The print quality was crisp and smooth (I did not expect them to be since it was only 2MP). I printed my photos to 4x6 and they are great. I am really pleased with the camera and will be buying one for myself soon. There is no need to spend hundreds of dollars more when this camera has everything the average person needs.

    5-0 out of 5 stars I wouldn't own ANY other Digital Camera!
    I searched reviews information and asked tons of ?'s before making my decision to purchase this camera. And I am so happy to own it. I am not an expert at digital or computer stuff and this camera was so easy to use. I have replaced my 35mm & 110 camera with this camera. I purchased some rechargeable batteries and a ac adapter & it has been great! Very pleased! I'm not one for reading instructions and I just read enough to operate, If I were to sit down and read the rest I'd be able to do even more with my camera.

    This is the best camera out there! Originally I was going to purchase the A20, but found that it was going to be discontinued so I went with it's replacement (and I love it!). I sell a bit on ebay and this is a great easy to use camera that takes super pictures! If your planning to purchase I'd purchase this camera or one of it's newer ones for better picture (I'm sure the newer ones of this brand are even better - but they will stick to the basics and keep it easy to use). I paid more than what it's going for now, but that's technology for you. Anyways, I rate 5 star due to easy use, small camera (can take to party's and such), and it's a great replacement (to get rid of those camera's that use film). I have saved tons of money just on not buying film! ... Read more


    14. Sony DSCF707 Cyber-shot 5MP Digital Still Camera w/ 5x Optical Zoom
    by Sony
    list price: $1,099.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00005UKBD
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Sony
    Sales Rank: 1547
    Average Customer Review: 4.89 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Stay ahead of the digital curve with the Sony DSC-F707. Showcasing superb functionality and some of the most advanced technology currently available, the DSC-F707 combines a 5.24-megapixel CCD, a swivel Carl Zeiss lens, hologram AF laser focus assist, and Sony's NightShot technology, which enables you to shoot infrared photos.

    Optics and Resolution
    The Sony DSC-F707 features a Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar lens with 5x optical and 2x digital zoom (for a 10x total), an f2.0 maximum aperture, and a focal range of 9.7-48.5mm (equivalent to 38-190mm). It contains a 5.0-megapixel (effective) CCD, or 5.2-million gross pixels.

    More Features
    The DSC-F707 uses Sony's NightShot technology, the same feature seen on Sony's camcorders, which uses infrared illumination and an infrared filter to take photos in complete darkness. The night-framing system provides infrared light as a composition assist, and utilizes hologram AF focusing and preflash exposure metering for consistently great shots even in low- or zero-light conditions.

    Picture quality is enhanced with clear-color NR (noise reduction) that reduces color noise and slow-shutter NR that captures and subtracts CCD noise from long time exposures.

    Movie Mode
    In movie mode, the DSC-F707 produces color digital videos in multiple creative formats, including 320 x 240 (high quality), 320 x 240 (normal), and 160 x 112. You can fill up the Memory Stick with digital video, but you are limited to 15-second movies with 320 x 240 mode. Another movielike feature is called ClipMotion, which will take 10 images and put them into an animated GIF.

    The limited resolution of your movies guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative.

    Storage and Transfer
    Images are stored on Memory Sticks, Sony's proprietary memory-card format. The included 16 MB stick holds approximately 11 images at the camera's standard 5-megapixel setting (2,560 x 1,920 pixels). Memory Sticks are reusable, but if you tend to take more than 11 images per outing, then you'll want a bigger card. A 128 MB stick is a great size for this camera, storing around 70 images.

    To transfer images to your computer, simply attach the included USB cable between your PC and your camera--your computer should automatically recognize the camera and let you move the pictures to your hard drive. If you own a Sony desktop or laptop, your computer may also have a built-in Memory Stick reader, which makes transferring as easy as reading a floppy disk.

    Power
    The DSC-F707 uses a proprietary rechargeable Infolithium battery (model M).

    Size
    The DSC-F707 measures 4.75 by 2.75 by 6 inches and weighs 25.06 ounces with battery, Memory Stick, lens cap, and shoulder strap attached.

    Other features include:

    • Through-the-lens (TTL) preflash metering and red-eye reduction, cold-shoe and accessory terminal for HVL-F1000
    • Twilight, portrait, and landscape mode autoexposure
    • Multipattern measuring exposure system
    • 46-step shutter priority (30 sec to 1/1,000 sec)
    • 13-step aperture priority (f2.0 to f8.0)
    • Full manual exposure
    • High-speed scan autofocus
    • Manual focus ring with LCD magnifier

    Contents and Recommended Accessories
    This package includes the DSC-F707 digital camera, Infolithium M battery, AC adaptor/in-camera charger, AV output cable, USB cable, shoulder strap, lens cap, 16 MB Memory Stick, printed manual, and CD-ROM featuring MGI PhotoSuite and drivers. ... Read more

    Features

    • 5-megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 inches and beyond
    • Carl Zeiss autofocus lens with 5x optical/2x digital (10x total) zoom
    • Included 16 MB Memory Stick holds 11 images at default settings
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery(included)

    Reviews (79)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A great amateur purchase
    I bought this camera a year ago as an upgrade from the P70 because I wanted something with manual focus and a higher resolution. I've been extremely satisfied with the picture quality, although a slightly faster lens would have made taking indoor pictures easier without the flash. The image quality is astounding; everyone around me is amazed at what this camera can produce. 5MP is plenty for producing decently-sized prints.

    The camera works well with every computer I've plugged it into on a range of operating systems (Mac OS 8-X, Windows 98-XP,RedHat Linux 7.x) and shows up as a mounted filesystem that I can easily drag a drop to/from. I don't use the included software to edit images, preferring ImageMagick for quick edits or photoshop for more complicated work.

    I would certainly reccomend this camera for anyone looking for capability beyond the basic point-and-shoot models. The manual focus and exposure settings are simple and relatively intuitive, and more complicated things like white balancing are properly available.

    I would reccomend this camera for anyone looking for a digital camera, but still wanting to retain some of the flexibility of a SLR film camera.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Investment in Digital Photography
    Frankly, this IS an investment...you spending $1000+ for this camera plus some needed accessories. Few people will ever shoot 5 Mega Pixels (MP) shots every time, but serious (and serious amateur) photographers will certainly appreciate being able to produce stunning detail when the need arises. Look at images shot on your friends' 2 or 3 MP cameras...this level of quality is amazing...but you WILL want to exceed this occasionally, and (...) is the price you pay to get the technology NOW. A 5 MP head shot will allow you to EASILY discern individual hairs on life-size prints (as in 11x14)...it's truely amazing.

    I looked at the Minolta Dimage 7...the auto focus zooms past the subject and back...it seems irritatiingly "loose", for lack of a better term. The Sony is a bit crisper in it's approach to auto focus, though not perfect.

    Low-light shots are a challenge, but the viewfinder does have a tremendous amount of information available, including exposure "F" stops, shutter speed, low light warnings, etc. The true genius is that you can essentially operate the camera in a manual mode, quickly overriding the meter to compensate for the light in any situation...backlight, contrasty light, reflections, etc.

    If you ever used a 35mm in manual in the old days (when you really had to KNOW photography), you'll love the control available. And younger photographers will find a whole new world in being able to make this camera do what most digitals will still not do...take the unusual shot.

    The camera is well balanced, and rather sturdy. You will get used to the shooting position...give it time. My biggest complaint is that the zoom selection switch operates "backwards" to my taste. Intuitively, I want to zoom "in" pressing the "out" button (!)...

    You have an adequate built-in pop-up flash...PLUS a PC connection for external flash AND a flash shoe! Slavery, anyone?

    The memory stick is a bit of a hassle, but extremely convenient once you get over the struggle. Buy a small USB reader to use at work or home...I use the "Zio". And buy the 128 MB memory stick...nothing smaller.

    There were early problems with "White Balance", as recently as Nov 01. Current cameras should be shipping with the factory fix, but Sony, to it's shame, STILL has no information on it's website detailing same, even though it required early owners to send the camera for a "free" repair. Not exactly good thinking for a $1000 camera.

    The images are good, but I do have to compensate a bit in low-light. Based on shooting several thousand "test" shots with another camera, I'm happy with this one. It does the job and can satisfy both consumer and professional. Note that I do not plan to replace this camera for several years. Why? Because printer technology has not caught up to the resolution of the camera (at least for the home user) and no one really needs much more in a camera. Five Mega Pixels will generate a poster-size image with very nice quality...you won't be doing it often, but you'll be glad you did when you do.

    I like it, and I shopped hard to ensure the most features with the best price. As with all electronics, find a cheap extended warranty. (...) . Cameras DO break.

    Shop carefully for a CASE to put it in...the unique shape requires some thinking. I have 3. One for everything including cords and cables, one for the camera plus memory sticks, and a Sony brand "ever-ready" case. Depends on how long you're out and how fast you want to access the camera..at what level of protection. Think.

    You'll want an extra battery. Perhaps a travel charger, otherwise you charge the battery by plugging the CAMERA in the wall (!)...thanks Sony. :-(

    Buy a UV filter (58mm) to protect the lens.

    This camera is expensive, and generally reliable - it's a Sony. Many features I have not detailed, and it has a superb 10x OPTICAL zoom (and a 2x digital). If you are thinking digital and want to not have to trade-up for a while, I suggest the Sony DSC-F707. If you love photography, do not buy a smaller CCD chip than 5 MP...even if you buy another brand. But I certainly recommend the Sony DSC-F707 camera for people to whom the image is important.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome camera
    This is my first camera i ever purchased. It's great! I haven't had any complaints. It shoots great pics, the zoom is phenomenal, and the features are great. Its a quality camera

    5-0 out of 5 stars Awesome Camera!
    This Sony takes some awesome photos! I have printed a lot and they are always sharp & clear, this cam has a ton of features and is every bit worth the asking price, so go ahead and plunk down the cash, you won't be dissapointed!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Superb camera for the Money
    Like most people about to buy a digital camera, I did a lot of research. A lot. When it came down to making a decision about price vs. value, I kept coming back to the 707. It really came down to the incredibly high resolution, the Zeiss lens and the EFT veiwfinder which although not the ideal, it's damn good for an EFT. It also has a very functional diopter adjuster which makes the viewfinder the best in its class. I've been using the camera for about a year now and it's NEVER run our of power. I work at a graphic design firm and my co workers are blown away by my 11x14 prints made from this camera. I still don't see anything that can touch the quality of this camera for the $. You just can't go wrong. ... Read more


    15. Nikon Coolpix 5000 5MP Digital Camera with 3x Optical Zoom
    by Nikon

    Asin: B00005QJCU
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Nikon
    Sales Rank: 2868
    Average Customer Review: 3.64 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Once again, Nikon has upped the ante in the world of digital cameras with the introduction of the Coolpix 5000. Its 5-megapixel sensor, 28-85mm zoom lens, and extensive controls make this a great choice for discriminating photographers seeking a digital camera with filmlike quality and SLR-style manual controls.

    In a departure from previous flagship Coolpix models, the 5000 is very compact (much smaller than the older 900-series models) and looks more or less like a traditional point-and-shoot. It does not employ the trademark Coolpix swiveling-lens design; instead, on this model, it's the LCD display that does the swiveling. The screen can be flipped out from the camera body and rotated for easy viewing from any shooting angle--it even works for a self-portrait. An added bonus to this design is the ability to tuck the vulnerable display inward for protection when the camera is not in use. Of course, images can also be composed by looking through the traditional optical viewfinder.

    The Coolpix 5000 features a 3x zoom lens--the most common power for zoom digital cameras. It's the range that sets the Coolpix apart--its widest setting is an unusually wide 28mm, perfectly matching the wide-angle setting on most SLR cameras. Almost every other digital camera's wide-angle starts at 35 or 38mm. The all-glass lens features nine elements in seven groups.

    Power is provided by a proprietary lithium-ion EN-EL1 battery rated for approximately 100 minutes of use (battery and charger are included). If you're worried about getting caught in the middle of nowhere with a dead battery, the camera also uses a standard disposable lithium 2CR5 camera battery. Unused lithium batteries hold their power for years, so you'll probably want to toss one of these into your camera bag as a backup. For hardcore photographers, there's also an optional power pack/hand grip that uses six AA batteries and offers several times the power capacity of the rechargeable pack.

    We've come to expect Coolpix cameras to offer an extensive set of manual controls, and the 5000 offers sports than we can list here, including shutter speeds from 1/4,000 to 8 seconds, shutter priority, aperture priority, and full manual modes, manual focus and white balance, ISO ratings from 100 to 800, and numerous other settings to let photographers capture any shot they can dream up. See our product specs for more details.

    An extensive selection of accessories has helped to make Coolpix cameras favorites with serious photographers. From wide angle and telephoto add-on lenses to an adapter that lets you use the camera as a scanner for your slides and negatives, Nikon offers enough add-ons to create a system that meets all of your needs.

    Shutter lag--the delay between the time you press the button and the moment the camera actually captures the photo--is a problem with most digital cameras, and the Coolpix 5000 is no exception. The camera can take over a second to snap your picture after pressing the button, which can be an unacceptably long time, especially if you're trying to take a picture of a quick-moving subject. Most of this delay can be eliminated by prefocusing--composing your shot, then pressing the shutter button halfway down to allow the camera to adjust the focus and metering. When you're ready to take the picture, press the button the rest of the way down, and the shutter will snap almost instantly.

    Movie mode captures movie clips with audio at resolutions of 320 x 240 pixels at approximately 15 frames per second for up to 40 seconds. This feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative.

    The Coolpix 5000 comes with a rechargeable EN-EL1 battery and charger, a 32 MB CompactFlash card, video and USB cables, lens cap, neck strap, and an impressive software suite that includes Genuine Fractals LE. The camera is covered by a one-year warranty.

    ... Read more

    Features

    • 5.2 megapixel sensor creates 2,560 x 1,920 images for prints at 11 x 14 and beyond
    • 3x optical (plus 4x digital) zoom lens with autofocus
    • Included 32 MB CompactFlash card holds approximately 18 images at default resolution; camera is Microdrive compatible
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery (included)
    • Connects with Macs and PCs via USB port

    Reviews (59)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful. Worth the investment in time (& money).
    I have been using the Coolpix 5000 for the past few weeks, just enough time to shoot 1,000+ photos. My 3rd Nikon and 1st digital, it's lived up to my expectations: I've been more than pleased with the quality of the images, my ultimate criterion. While you'll hear a lot of wasted drivel on feature A,B,C and comparisons with model X,Y,Z, you need to decide what you're trying to achieve before investing this much on a new gadget. If you want to capture quality digital images for selected printing in 8x10 sizes or larger - and are willing to invest the time in learning how to make that happen - then this could be the camera for you.

    This is no simple point-and-shoot, which explains why some users have been apprehensive. Personally, I prefer the multitude of options it offers, including these (all of which I have used so far):
    - Ability to manually override nearly every automatic setting, including: exposure mode (S,A,P,M), focus distance, AF focus areas (5), flash level compensation, sharpening, white-balance, etc.
    - ISO sensitivity from 100 to 800, manual or auto, enabling hand-held shooting indoors
    - Spot, center-weighted, and matrix (256 segment) metering
    - Hot shoe to connect external flash for more lighting options
    - Wide angle lens (28mm equivalent) is wider than most 'standard' lenses on similar cameras
    - 3 User Set configurations let you adjust quickly to different shooting situations/styles
    - Shutter speeds short (up to 1/2000s) or long (8 sec)

    If you do like novel features, then don't worry, you'll also get red-eye reduction, self-timer, movie mode (QuickTime up to 60sec @ 15fps, 320x240) and "best shot selector". Rumor has it BSS is a cool feature that rattles off 3 frames and stores only the 'best' - the one with the most information, i.e., sharpest & best exposed (but I haven't used it). I did like discovering after I played back the first movie that the camera even has a built-in speaker for audio during playback. I also like the ability to zoom into images up to 6.0x during viewing to examine carefully whether you captured what you wanted. The buttons and menu settings, while overwhelming at first, really are intuitively designed - once you've figured out a feature, you don't have to keep returning to the manual.

    I've been really pleased with the images I've captured so far. Fleshtones are realistic, sharpness of images is pleasing (not excessively sharp, or 'digital'), and metering is accurate. There's plenty of data to work with in the 5 megapixel images, which I shoot in FINE .jpg mode yielding a 1.5-2.0 MB image at 2560x1920 pixels. The lens glass on the CP5000 is the largest of the Coolpix's so far, which probably explains the higher image quality.

    The typical 'knocks' on the CP5000, and my opinion:
    -"85mm is too short!": so is 200mm. If you want to shoot models on South Beach, get an SLR and a 400mm lens instead.
    -"32mb CF card is too small!": if you rely on only one CF card, you shouldn't be spending this much on a digital camera.
    -"images are soft!": I prefer mine stirred, not sharpened, and do the rest in Photoshop. If you let the camera over-do it for you, there's no getting back the lost/interpolated data.
    -"battery life's too short!": you'll run out of card space first (I use 128mb CF). You just spent a grand - stop whining and buy a 2nd battery.

    So, what are its real "issues"?
    - No way to screw in a UV/protection filter. For some reason, Nikon opted not to put threads over the glass. You have to buy the lens attachment mount (UR-E5) and attach filters to it. An inconvenience, since you can't replace the lens and really should protect it with a clear filter.
    -It's slow to autofocus, especially in low-light situations, as there is no AF-assist illumination. I generally use manual focus or set the Single AF mode in such situations, and it seems to work just fine.
    -My indoor pictures using the built-in flash sometimes over-saturate the reds in fleshtones. I suspect this is because the bulb is a bit blue/green, and the white-balance logic on the camera over-compensates. I have kept the WB setting on "Auto", but I may fiddle with this a bit to see if another manual setting produces better results. When this has happened, I just tweaked the Saturation of Reds in Photoshop and they look fine.
    - It feels smaller than it looks in the promo photograph. If you have big hands, you need to break the habit of groping the camera with your right hand. Otherwise, you'll cover the flash sensor and over- or under-expose your flash shots.

    Should you buy one? Qualified YES! It's not for everyone. You can pull it out of the box and start 'snapping photos', but you might end up with snapshots that you could have made with a cheaper alternative. If you give it a little time and really learn how - and when - to use its many features, then I think you will produce even better images than you'd imagined.

    You'll really like the CP5000 if:
    -you like the convenience of Auto-Everything features, but want the creativity that only comes with Manual settings;
    -you like the idea of plugging your CF memory card into an Epson/HP photo printer and spitting out snapshots, but you'd prefer to 'tweak' them yourself in an image editor like Photoshop.
    -you can't afford a digital SLR right now, but you can't wait to start experimenting with digital photography

    I like it, and I think you will, too. Make an informed decision, and be sure that whatever you buy is the right tool for the job.

    2-0 out of 5 stars too bad..from a retired after 30 years TV photojournalist
    this is the 3rd nikon digital camera I've had and returned (thanks Amazon).I had the 775,885,and the 5000.For me,and this is a personal observation,they're too damn small!! I have poor eyesight and the screen and menus are too small for me to navigate.sure,you could set it up for idiot proof but why spend $1100 for a totally adjustable camera? I did try a few pictures and they seemed fine but once again I didn't take the time to really use the features.I couldn't.I'm not sold on digital photography for my purposes.you could buy an excellent 35mm camera for 1/3 the cost of the 5000 and buy a $150 scanner and do the same thing.I've used Nikon equipment for 30 years and love them.It's too bad that these cameras don't work for me.maybe they will for you.GO LOOK AT THEM before buying and make sure they are what you want and need.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very good camera for natural light photography
    I bought my CoolPix 5000 late December 2001 and have been shooting with it in various locations since then. I am globally pleased with the camera, but found its enveloppe of usage to be somewhat narrower than I was expecting.

    As a foreword, I should say that, this being my first digital camera, as well as my first compact camera, I don't have any other obvious reference to compare it to.

    First, the good points:

    - very good images at 100 ISO,
    - small size makes it very easy to carry the camera with you at any time. The 5000 is a compact camera, this should be kept in mind,
    - very high feeling of quality when handling the beast,
    - very convenient orientable screen,
    - great zoom going down to 28 mm equivalent. Image sharpness appears to be very good at all focal lenght and appertures (without any scientific data though),
    - good image results in point and shoot mode,
    - very convenient tools for image review after shooting (including zoom to the pixel that makes it easy to assess the sharpness of the image).

    Downsides:

    - price,
    - poor flash results (power and exposure),
    - poor autofocus when selecting by hand which sensor you want to use. Most of the time, the camera is unable to find focus even on contrasty subjects. I gave up using this quickly. The automatic mode, in which the camera chooses automatically a sensor on which it could achieve focus, works fine for most cases (on point and shoot mode I mean),
    - a lot of noise when using 200, 400 and 800 ISO modes (this could be the same with other digital cameras). I would strongly advise not to use these unless you really have to. They might allow you to take a sharp picture, but the result will mostly be unusable unless treated with special filters in photoshop (it seems some guys have created special actions that are good at removing such noise),
    - slow electric zoom (but this is a normal feature for a compact camera),
    - very short battery life. Any serious outing has to be planned with at least one if not 2 spare batteries,
    - camera difficult to master (even with a strong Nikon background ranging from F-301 to F100, but the manual in Japanese did probably not help :-)).

    To summarize, I believe that Nikon just released the best compact digital camera for day light photography ever made.

    The problem is that, at this price, most users will expect it to be more than a compact camera and might therefore feel somewhat frustated when using it. Personnally, I didn't own a compact camera anyway, so I don't really regret my purchase :-)

    I also believe that the overall strategy of Nikon will become easier to understand when they will have released their low end digital SLR camera (which should happen soon according to persistant rumours).

    Bernard

    2-0 out of 5 stars Nice Pics, Frustrating Camera
    The photos I've taken with my Coolpix 5000 are pretty good, though it has a lot of trouble adjusting to indoor lighting, even with the $100 Nikon SB-30 flash attachment.

    But this can be a VERY frustrating camera to use. Besides the now-standard but always annoying delay built into virtually any piece of digital equipment (I thought digital was going to make things faster, not slower, didn't you?), the Coolpix 5000 will often just decide it's taken enough pictures for now, thank you very much, and it will do nothing more.

    I've gone over and over the instruction manual and can find no hint as to what to do in this situation. I am focused, I have checked lighting, I have my settings correct, I push the button...and then I push it again...and then I push it again, and then again, and again and again and again, and then I hold it down until my finger hurts, and then I just want to throw the stupid camera in front of an asphalt truck. Nothing happens. If I turn it off and then back on, nothing happens. If I turn it off and leave it alone for 24 hours, then it usually is ready to have fun again.

    Surprisingly, the kids have lost interest in posing for pictures and are getting a little cranky after waiting 24 hours for the camera to get its act together.

    2-0 out of 5 stars "System Control" Failed after a year: $244 Nikon repair
    Except for it being unresponsive (by the time it's ready to shoot, the moment is gone) it's been a good camera for the 16 months I've had it... but it failed recently, and Nikon had little to say about why, how, or how I could prevent it from happening again. In fact, the people at Penn Camera seemed to be surprised that I wanted to know exactly what work was done ("Nikon never gives that information"). After explaining it by way of analogy---"what if when you picked up your car from repair shop, the serviceman said 'we fixed it... you don't need to know what specifically was wrong, or what we did, you just need to pay up' ... how would you feel? Seems criminal, doesn't it."---they came around, but still couldn't tell me anything.

    So... I'm no longer a happy Nikon customer. If you're thinking of buying Nikon products, factor reapir costs in to the price. ... Read more


    16. Canon PowerShot S330 2MP Digital ELPH Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Canon Cameras US
    list price: $449.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B0000645C8
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Canon Cameras US
    Sales Rank: 1661
    Average Customer Review: 4.66 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Inch for inch and ounce for ounce, Canon's PowerShot S330 Digital Elph packs more power into less space than virtually any other digital camera, stuffing a feature-packed 2-megapixel camera with 3x optical zoom into a diminutive brushed-metal case that slips easily into a purse or pocket.

    Resolution
    Like last year's S300, the S330 features a 2-megapixel sensor for sharp prints at sizes up to 8 by 10 inches. With cameras of up to 5 megapixels now on the market, some enthusiasts were hoping this would be the year when the Elph made the jump to 3 megapixels, but it appears that Canon still believes 2 megapixels remain the best balance between performance and price for most consumers. We tend to agree. If you regularly print your photos at sizes larger than 8 by 10 inches, you'll probably want a camera with more manual controls than the Elph offers--we recommend Canon's 3-megapixel S30 or 4-megapixel S40.

    Optics
    A 3x optical zoom lens (35-105mm equivalent) aids in photo composition, and an additional 2.5x digital zoom (7.5x total) further magnifies your image. Remember, however, that digital zoom reduces the sharpness and detail of your image, so it's best used sparingly. Two systems help ensure your pictures will be perfectly focused, even in challenging conditions: a multizone autofocus works even when the subject of your photo isn't in the center of the scene, and in low-light situations (a particular weakness for many digital cameras), a focus-assist lamp sends out a small patterned beam to help the camera accurately determine distance.

    More Features
    Though it's primarily designed as a point-and-shoot, the S330 includes several advanced features for photographers who want more creative control, including exposure compensation, low-light manual shutter speeds, manual ISO and white balance, stitch assist, plus black-and-white, sepia, vivid, and neutral modes.

    A movie mode captures video clips with sound. Depending upon resolution, these clips can last from 2 to 60 seconds. The limited length and resolution of these clips guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative. In addition, you can add up to 60 seconds of audio to each still picture you take. A built-in speaker even lets you listen to audio when playing back stills and movies.

    Power
    The S330 uses a proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery, and both the battery and the charger are included. Though the new NB-1LH looks identical to (and is interchangeable with) the NB-1L batteries shipped with previous Elph models, the new battery holds 840 mAh of energy, a 23 percent increase. Because the battery is unique to the Elph cameras and can be nearly impossible to find when on the road, we strongly recommend getting a spare if you're planning to take the camera on extended outings.

    Storage and Transfer
    Images are stored on standard Type I CompactFlash (CF) cards. Consider the included 8 MB card a "starter" capacity, since its 12-picture limit means you'll need to return to your computer often to transfer images and free up the card for more pictures. A 128 MB card is a great size for this camera, storing around 200 images. To transfer images to your computer, simply attach the included USB cable between your PC and your camera. Your computer should automatically recognize your camera and let you move the pictures to your hard drive.

    Printing
    Canon has introduced a series of printers designed to work directly with the S330. Using these printers, no computer is required--simply connect the camera to the printer and start printing. The CP-10 produces credit-card-sized prints, and the CP-100 makes 4-by-6-inch prints. Both use continuous-tone technology for results that are indistinguishable from traditional photos. Of course, photos from your Elph can also be printed on any home computer system with an inkjet printer, sent off for online processing, or simply enjoyed on your computer screen.

    Size
    At just 3.7 by 2.5 by 1.2 inches and 8.6 ounces, the S330 is identical in size to its predecessor. If this sounds too bulky, the S200 Elph is even smaller and has specs that are nearly identical, with the exception of a less powerful 2x optical zoom lens.

    Contents
    The package includes the S330 camera, NB-1LH battery with CB-2LS charger, AV and USB cables, wrist strap, software suite, and 8 MB memory card.

    ... Read more

    Features

    • 2-megapixel sensor captures 1,600 x 1,200 images for prints at sizes up to 8 x 10 inches
    • Autofocus lens with 3x optical/2.5x digital (7.5x total) zoom
    • Included 8 MB CompactFlash card holds 12 images at default settings
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery(included)

    Reviews (88)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An absolutely incredible little camera
    I bought the S330 3 days before leaving for Moscow & St. Petersburg. Based on reviews read here and at other sites I also bought a 256MB memory card and an extra battery. The basics of operation took about 20 minutes and 15-20 photos of the backyard, by the second day of my trip operation was effortless. The zoom is quite impressive and most pictures were flawless; whether from a boat, through glass, from a moving car, whatever, even an amateur like myself got some truly special photos. I had a 128MB card from another camera and took it with me, a bonus, the memory cards aren't specific to the camera and you can get real cheap memory on-line from secondary distributers or borrow the cards from freinds with other digital cameras. The batteries charge very quickly, and with two I was able to leave one charging at the hotel and the other in the camera, but I could've easily carried both all day - full charge takes less than an hour. I never had any power problems, I also got in the habit of turning the camera off between shots however. Which brings me to my only real complaint, the on/off switch requires sustained pressure for 2-4 seconds, its not usually problem getting the shot you want but it could be - and it was a little annoying. Since I had so much memory I used 1600x1200 and the finest detail for every shot, and I still took over 350 photos and had room for about 75 more. Now that I'm home its giving me all kinds of options for re-sizing and zooming into whatever details I like most in the picture. The picture review setting on this camera is one of its best features, you can actually zoom into the photo you just took to be sure you've got the level of detail or particular aspect of a subject that you might've wanted. I ended-up retaking several photos and getting precisely the picture I was hoping for. I own an older Sony and one of the original Kodaks, and I can't recommend this camera enough. Good Luck.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Pocket Camera from Fantastic Website
    I normally shoot with an Olympus 3040 digital which has all the bells and whistles that allow 35 mm style photos. But I have missed numerous potentially great photos because I didn't have this somewhat larger camera with me. I wanted the Elph for about a year, but didn't get it due to short battery life and the 2-megapixel limit. The S330 uses the NB-1LH lithium ion battery (which can be used on older models too. After reading the reviews of the new S-330, I bought the camera. I haven't taken many pictures in the few days I've had the camera, but took some outside and a couple indoors. I printed out a 5X7 outdoor shot and was very impressed. The quality of the photo was every bit as good as with my 3-megapixel. Now I have a camera in my pocket ready for those formerly missed shots and I can count on great pictures to at least 5X7's... I also bought the Viking 128MB card, an extra NB-1LH Battery and the PSC-300 Soft Case. I would do it the same way again and maybe get the AC adapter for time hooked to the computer or for learning the camera better. The case is good but has a pocket that accommodates the charger and battery, so it is a little large for a jean's pocket. The ZoomBrowser software that comes with the camera is much better than I had for file storage and printing layouts. File naming, moving and printlayout are easy. I still use Photoshop Elements for my image editing and haven't tried the image editor that came with the S-330. A camera is a bit like a life jacket: it doesn't do you any good if you don't have it on you. If you want a camera that you will have with you, you will like this camera.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent quality rugged camera
    Everyone wrote enough about it, so I will only add that this camera worked much better than expected for quite a long time, until during last trip, I dropped it really hard on cement.
    The shutter button came out, the case kind of split in half (could see the guts inside), and of course the door for the memory card broke and the battery came off... I just pushed the camera back together and it snapped in place (kind off, still see inside), put back the shutter button (without the spring that came off which I lost), scotch taped the memory card door, and the camera seemed to work fine. Actually we finished the vacation taking pictures with it for a few more days. No quality difference noticed between the picture from before the accident and after.
    Now I am back, unfortunately it would be too expensive to fix it, so I guess will buy another ELPH, perhaps 3-4M pixels and if it will be anything like this one, I am sure I will not regret it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Camera... Digital Elph's are great...
    I purchased the S330 a couple years ago, and I love it. I have taken it everywhere and taken almost 1,000 pics with it. I purchased the 128MB card and have yet to fill the card. I have not had any problems and it has been the best camera I've ever had. So much in fact, everyone who sees it wants one and is very impressed. I am now looking into getting one for my brother for Christmas.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Product
    No regrets. Great in every way. Sharp Pictures, fast, comfortable rechargeable battery system. Only advise: Get extra card. I am happy after having bought a 128 Kb. card. Very recommendable. ... Read more


    17. Nikon Coolpix 2500 2MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Nikon

    Asin: B0000635UX
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Nikon
    Sales Rank: 1851
    Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Features

    • 2-megapixel sensor captures 1,600 x 1,200 images for prints at sizes up to 8 x 10 inches
    • Autofocus lens with 3x optical/4x digital (12x total) zoom
    • Included 8 MB CompactFlash card holds 15 images at default settings
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses proprietary lithium-ion rechargeable battery(included)

    Reviews (86)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A friendly camera that looks cool
    Nikon Coolpix 2500 is a great compact camera. I wanted to buy a camera that can work in an easy to use automatic mode for point & click situations like parties, casual travel; and also provides manual mode for experimenting & control. My choice was mainly between Coolpix 2500, Coolpix 995 & Canon Elph Series. I just fell for the cool styling of 2500 and the ability to carry it in my shirt pocket.

    I just took it out to Australia for a week long trip. It has performed well under different lighting conditions. All I needed to do was change the "SCENE".The camera allows me to identify the type of scene I am going to photograph. It has a bunch of "SCENE" that I can select from. Some of them are - Beach, Landscape, Party, Portrait, Night Landscape, Backlight to name a few. I was also able to take night shots of the Opera house & the Harbor Bridge in the "night landscape" mode. They came out pretty well. I was happy to see the result in about 2 seconds - the duration of the exposure. Pictures taken in bright daylight like that on a beach also came of well. What disappointed was the photgraphs that I took at a night Bar-be-Q party. In most photographs, the people close to the camera looked bright and those away by more than 7-8 feet away from the camera looked dark. Another "scene" that I found useful was "Close Up". I wanted to note down a recepie from a local magazine. Instead of taking notes I just photographed the page in the "Close Up" mode. Now, I do not have to write them down ! I just read the recepie off the picture stored on my computer. It is not much of a "Manual" camera. So if you want to control everything, I recommend look else where.

    I found the controls easy to use. There are a bunch of on-screen menu items, buttons & knobs. They are well layed out and are intitutive to use. Let me add - I am a techie. I can handle complexity. I had my first picture in about 10 minutes opening the box and charging the batteries. It took me about 1 hour to understand all the controls & install the software.

    You got to buy a memory card unless you intend to save your pictures in a very basic picture format (like 640 X??). I bought a 128 MB card. It stores about 140 pictures in best quality mode (called "FINE"). The camera can be put on a tripod. That is a big plus for night photography. It is very easy to put my fingers on the lens. So I have to worry about it all the time, specially while opening or closing the lens. A price for this cool design!

    In a nutshell I find Nikon Coolpix 2500 a fun, easy to use camera for easy going photography.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Compact and Powerful, a good combination
    I researched several cameras, including the Canon PowerShot and greater and lesser Nikon Coolpix, before deciding on the Coolpix 2500.

    Things I like about it:

    1. The size is great. I carry it in my purse or around my neck at all times. You can't get the shot unless the camera is with you! This is one camera you CAN have with you all the time. The swivel lens helps make it more compact because there are no protruding parts once you close the lens, no lens cap to worry about, and the lens is totally protected. I slide mine in an inexpensive zippered makeup bag and throw the strap around my neck. Wha-la! - instant [inexpensive] camera bag.

    2. The quality of the pictures is amazing! The resolution is fantastic, much better than I needed or expected. It does a good job in low light situations too, which was something I was looking for.

    3. Scene modes: These are very useful for someone like me who wants to be creative and get good shots, but doesn't have the time or patience to figure out the correct shutter speed and what-not.

    I don't have any negatives that are bad enough that I would take the camera back, but just so you know...

    Things I don't like:

    1. People have complained that the flash is too bright. For this reason, I usually rely on natural lighting when photographing people. Fortunately, the camera is usually able to handle this. You have to hold it steady because the shutter speed is slower. I'm usually able to get one that is clear if I snap several. The nice thing is that it is digital, so you can see what you are getting, and retake if necessary.

    2. Buy a 128 MB or at least 64 MB memery card the same day you buy the camera. I have not even messed with the starter card they give you. Way too small.

    3. This is just an oddity, not really a problem. When you are in close-up mode, the lens is constantly refocusing and/or resetting the lighting, not quite sure. Consequently, it makes a lot of clicking and buzzing sounds. Not so great if you are trying to sneak up on a butterfly or something. Hasn't really bothered me, except that I thought my camera was broken. I decided it wasn't when my replacement camera did the same thing.

    4. If you can afford it, buy a second battery. It lasts a decent amount of time, but it would be nice to have an extra.

    So, these are minor problems, with solutions. I'm very pleased with the camera. It's great to have a digital. My photographic skills have improved just by buying this camera because 1. I can take as many pictures as I want, without worrying about wasting film 2. I can re-take until I get the shot. 3. I always have it with me, so I rarely miss that awesome photo-op. 4. It's a Nikon!

    2-0 out of 5 stars Could be better
    I wanted an easy to use digital camera for vacation pics, hobby use etc. This is my first digital camera. Picked this one after much reserach, and due to some sale pricing I found.

    Things I like:
    1. Camera looks good and is very compact.
    2. Swivel lens has a few uses. (not very significant.)
    3. The price of the camera is fairly low for the features.
    4. Takes good outdoor and closeup photos.
    5. Controls and menus are OK. More than enough options for me & comparatively easy to use.
    6. Comes with a battery charger.

    Things I don't like.
    1. On / Off slider switch can easily get switched on by mistake.
    2. The swivel lens is awkward, but is a little better than dealing with a lens cap.
    3. Terrible red-eye when using flash. The flash is directly adjacent to the lens due to the swivel lens design. Therefore, red-eye is very bad, even when using the flash in the red-eye reduction mode.
    4. The Nikon software (NikonView 6) did not work for me (using a Mac OS 9.0). Caused freezes and several functions did not work. I ended up deleting the Nikon software after many days of trying to work with it and fix it. Not sure I got it all deleted. Still some ongoing computer issues stemming from the Nikon software.

    Overall, if you are going to be using your camera for indoor shots of people or animals using flash, I would not suggest this camera unless you like red eyes.
    Also, if your computer is a Mac, the Nikon software may give you problems.
    If I were doing it over, I would take a closer look at the Canon digital cameras, but they probably have their own list of shortcomings.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Loooove
    I absolutely adored this camera! It was my first digital camera, and I took over 2,000 picures with it during the time it lasted, however it has now died completely (won't turn on most of the time and when it does the screen reads "Error") and I have only had it for about a year and a half. So, now I have to look for a new camera.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Terrible design.....
    I agree, it looks really cool. Everything on this camera is perfect OTHER than the flash. It is less than 1/8th an inch from the lense, this cameras only major downside. When you take a picture everything up close is white and everything behiend that is black. Trying to take a picture of somthing that might be a little reflective? Too bad! I tried to take some pictures of a plastic computer case, and the flash created a lovely white glare on it, obscuring everything but the background, which was turned a lovely shade of black. Turn the flash off you say? Well, then the pictures get even blurrier. Yes, the pictures are always blurry. I am yet to get a good, non blurry picture from this camera. The camera figures "Well the flash is off so I should keep the shutter open for a half of a second". Most pictures from this camera make it look like a huge earthquake is in progress. Avoid this camera at all costs! I give Nikon some credit for trying to give this camera a cool look, but they could have moved the flash! Have they ever heard of product testers?? ... Read more


    18. Olympus Camedia C-4000 4MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Olympus
    list price: $599.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B00006F2MW
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Olympus
    Sales Rank: 431
    Average Customer Review: 4.43 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    With exposure options ranging from automatic to manual control, as well as six innovative scene program modes, it's easy to customize the Olympus C-4000 digital camera for any shot you line up. The C-4000 features a 4-megapixel CCD sensor, a 3x optical zoom lens, and expandability via SmartMedia cards.

    Optics and Resolution
    Featuring a CCD sensor with 4 million effective pixels, the C-4000 can capture digital images up to 2,288 x 1,712 pixels for 11-by-14-inch prints and beyond. The C-4000 features an Olympus aspherical glass lens (6.5-19.5mm, or 32-96mm equivalent in 35mm photography) that's designed exclusively for digital photography and provides vibrant color and sharp detail. It features an aperture range of f2.8 to f11.

    Shoot both wide-angle and close-up shots easily with the 10x total zoom lens (3x optical and 3.3x digital). Use the macro mode to shoot a flower from a distance of 8 inches, or use supermacro mode to shoot a dewdrop on a petal from just 1 inch away.

    Storage and Transfer
    The 16 MB SmartMedia memory card supplied with the C-4000 can store 16 images at the default high-quality setting (2,288 x 1,712 pixels). You can save images as either a TIFF or a JPEG. We recommend purchasing an additional high-capacity memory card.

    Movie Mode
    In movie mode, the C-4000 produces digital videos in two formats--320 x 240 and 160 x 120 pixels--for QuickTime movies at 15 frames per second. You can shoot movies up to 2 minutes in length.

    The limited resolution of your movies guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative.

    More Features
    The advanced manual controls let you take the picture you envision. Or choose full-auto mode for point-and-shoot simplicity. The C-4000 also includes six scene modes, including portrait, self-portrait, sport, landscape, landscape-portrait, and night scene. There are even four customizable "my modes" for instant access to your favorite combinations of camera settings. The new virtual-dial interface provides quick, easy, and intuitive access to all shooting modes, including the six scene modes.

    For extra-large prints, choose the optimum image enlargement mode to increase image size to the equivalent of 7.6 million pixels (3,200 x 2,400). And with 3:2 aspect modes, you can print photos in traditional 35mm format. Olympus's noise-reduction technology helps prevent the image noise that could otherwise appear in longer exposures taken in low light. The C-4000's USB autoconnect enables you to connect to your PC automatically--no driver software is required to transfer photos to most computers

    Power
    The camera is powered by two CR-V3 lithium-ion battery packs (included). We recommend getting a set or two of rechargeable nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries (you'll need a total of four AA NiMH batteries to power the camera) and a charger. A digital camera will kill a set of alkaline batteries extremely quickly, especially if you're using the camera's LCD display, so they aren't recommended except in a pinch.

    Size
    The C-4000 measures 4.3 by 3.0 by 2.8 inches and 10.5 ounces (without battery).

    Contents
    This package includes the Olympus C-4000 digital camera, a 16 MB SmartMedia card, AV and USB cables, two CR-V3 lithium-ion battery packs (model LB-01), carrying strap, lens cap and retainer cord, Camedia Master software CD-ROM, drivers for Mac and Windows, and a printed instruction manual. ... Read more

    Features

    • 4.0 megapixel sensor captures 2,288 x 1,712 images for prints at 11 x 14 inches and beyond
    • 3x optical plus 3.3xdigital zoom lens (for 10x total) with autofocus
    • Stores photos on 16 MB SmartMedia card--16 images at high-quality setting
    • Movie mode captures up to 2 minutes of video with no audio; connects to Macs and PCs via USB port
    • Includes 2 CR-V3 lithium-ion batteries (model LB-01); also accepts NiMH rechargeable batteries

    Reviews (67)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Olympus C4000: The Best Four Megapixel Digital Camera Deal!!
    Pros: Lots of manual options, incredible feature set, superb four megapixel digital images, Fantastic optics for color and clarity, Manual and automatic controls for pros and debutants, Very little lag, Excellent image quality and easy to use buttons, Fast, Many settings and options, great zoom ratio, nice control layout, nice size LCD

    Cons: Slightly Heavy, Not as cool looking as other cameras, 8 MB Storage card supplied with camera is woefully inadequate, User manual, software kind of plain, battery life, Size of pictures and erase features are not what I would like.

    Summary: The C-4000z is a very impressive digital camera and for the price it can't be beat. This camera packs a serious punch with features only found on higher end digital cameras. I have been using digital cameras for the past four years from Kodak to Sony but this one out beats them all. Now I won't beat around the bush and say there are no flaws with the cam, the first being the batteries shipped with the cam (they are one time use only)! So right off the bat you have to spend a couple more dollars for rechargeable batteries. The batteries I got I'm able to take about 200 hundred high res. (TIFF) pictures before being replaced. The second problem is the small memory card shipped with the cam (at the time of my buy Olympus was giving free 64 mb cards with mail in rebate). The camera does come with a owners manual but has very limited information in it, for a extensive manual you have to read it off the installation disk in PDF form which isn't bad for me because it makes it a little easier to look something up using the word find feature. Now for the good things about the camera. This camera is packed with features and this should be taken into account if your new to digital cameras there is a lot to take in. Everything is arranged on the camera that makes it easy to navigate and set up. Olympus even went and put a user choice setting button which is nice if you use certain setting such as focal length, shutter speed etc. which enables you to set your preferences and return to them without having to set the whole camera up again. The pictures that result from this camera are amazing! I was at Yosemite a couple of weeks ago and shot some impressive pictures which I framed and had hanging on my wall a service tech who was doing some work in my house actually wanted to know where I had bought the pictures. Several other features that Olympus thought of were the ability to attach an external flash (optional). The camera also gives you the ability to crop pictures right on the camera. The panoramic feature takes a little to get used to but works really well. I don't want to bore you with the fine details (exposure settings, shutter speeds etc) but just wanted to let you know if your looking for a decent digital camera at a fair price the C-4000z is for you. Oh just one more thing a little tip I use all the time, If you happen to have a smart media card take it along with you to your local camera shop or electronic store and ask the sales person if you can insert your card and try the camera. You can then take the card home and if you have a media reader or printer that has a reader built in you can see the results of the camera prior to buying it (just a suggestion). It also gives you the opportunity to see how your digital dark room will do when it come to printing from this camera.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Best Value for a 4MP Camera
    WHO IT'S FOR: With its complete set of manual controls, the Olympus C-4000 is for the serious amateur photographer or a novice wanting to learn a lot more about photography. If you're one who would rather just point-and-shoot, this camera or its rivals (like the Canon S45) is NOT for you, better just save your $200 and go for the cute compact types.

    Granted that YOU ARE serious about your photography BUT you are on a tight budget, then this camera is perfect for you. The 4MP is just right for the occasional 8x10 prints and more than enough quality for 5x7 prints. Among the competition (Canon S45/G2, Nikon Coolpix 4300, Sony S85), its price and features stand out.

    I bought this camera here at Amazon 5 months ago for 2 main reasons:
    - given the features and full manual controls, it had the most competitive price among the competition.
    - although not included in the package, the camera uses standard 4 AA-sized NiMH rechargeable batteries.

    I brought the camera to Europe for my honeymoon and have taken 300+ pictures with it. I am extremely pleased with it. Prints on 4x6 came out as crisp as my 20-year-old SLR (the excellent Nikon F3), and sometimes better (mainly because you can preview a shot and tweak exposure and composition without worrying about the cost of film: an obvious advantage for all digicams).

    PROS:
    - excellent daylight exposures on full auto or manual modes.
    - a fully-charged set of AA NiMH batteries lasts me two days of shooting 60+ pictures and previewing the LCD, something the proprietary batteries of other digicams would be hard-pressed to match.

    CONS:
    - You have to remember to remove the cap before turning the camera on -- an annoyance for all C-class Olympus cameras. Forgetting that doesn't damage the camera, but it's an annoyance still.
    - No remote control. You have to turn on the timer every time if you want to be in the picture or you want to take long exposures.
    - The lens cap more often than not gets removed inadvertently when removing or replacing the camera in its case. Be sure to always bring lens tissues or whatever you use to clean lenses.
    - The paltry 16MB card that comes with it. Although all camera brands have this fault of not including enough memory, I hoped Olympus would just do the right thing and pack it with a 128MB card.

    RECOMMENDATIONS:
    - Always have two sets of 4 AA NiMH batteries. Buy the Olympus B-50SU Quick Charger or the Kodak Max K2000 Battery Charger. They both come with 4 NiMH AA batteries and works whatever a country's voltage is. Then buy an additional set of 4 Kodak Max 1850mAh NiMH batteries.
    - Buy at least 2 128MB SmartMedia cards. Each 128MB card stores about 60-70 pictures at full 4MP SHQ resolution. Better still, bring your laptop along when going on extended vacations to backup your pics. I made the mistake of not bringing mine and had to look for shops to transfer my pics to CDs whenever space on my cards were running out.

    Finally, just go ahead and buy it (with the charger, extra batteries and extra memory cards). It's an excellent camera given its features and price.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Red Eye
    This camera generally takes very good pictures but I do have one complaint that has not been resolved. Even with red eye reduction feature on, it still takes bad redeye, especially with babies. The software does not eliminate it either. I have been through their customer service several times for this and one other problem and they were not helpful. I felt I was being talked down to and I finally gave up. I like the camera except for that, but I probably would not buy another Olympus unless customer service is more helpful.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very good for the money
    I've had this camera for over a year now and I'm very pleased with it. I've purchased nothing but Olympus products since I started photography as a hobby about 10 years ago. This is my second Olympus digital camera and it gives great pictures time and again. I've made prints up to 20"x30" that look like they were perfessionaly taken. I do recommend having an extra set of rechargable batteries on hand and extra memory cards. Very nice camera that isn't very bulky yet not too small that it will slip from your hands. You will be very happy with this camera.

    4-0 out of 5 stars I love this camera!!!
    The camera is just outstanding! I love it! I had it for about a year and the pictures are just great. It has ton of options and even after a year, I haven't used them all.

    There are several reasons, hovever, why I gave it only 4 stars. 1. The cap on the lense got to go. I forgot to take it off once just when I bought the camera, and the camera died on me. I had to send it back for a replacement.
    2. It's pretty bulky and you have to carry it around in it's own case, which could be problematic when you go to other countries and don't want to attract attention.
    3. The flash makes everybody blink and it's hard sometimes to get a good picture.
    Other than that, I would highly recommend the camera and I would buy it again in a second!
    Buy it. ... Read more


    19. Sony DSCP9 Cyber-shot 4MP Digital Camera w/ 3x Optical Zoom
    by Sony
    list price: $599.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000067R8G
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Sony
    Sales Rank: 2449
    Average Customer Review: 4.25 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Review

    The Sony DSC-P9 builds on the success of earlier models from Sony, such as the DSC-P1 and DSC-P5. The DSC-P9 adds a high-performance 4-megapixel CCD and combines it with an excellent quality 3x optical zoom lens. The chief selling point of the DSC-P9 has to be its diminutive size--this really is among the smallest, feature-rich digital cameras on the market--at just 4.4 by 2 by 1.4 inches.

    The metal body not only looks great but also gives the reassurance that the camera is robust and can be carried anywhere. Controls are straightforward and include a mode dial, a zoom toggle, and menu navigation buttons. Access to the Memory Stick and battery are from a single compartment door on the side of the camera. Input-output jacks are the fairly standard power, USB, and AV out.

    The 3x optical zoom lens tucks neatly into the body of the camera when not in use and includes an automatic lens protector. In use, the zoom moves from wide to full telephoto in less than three seconds, although it is a little noisier than expected, especially as compared to the notably quiet transport on the Kodak DX4900.

    The Sony menu navigation, which is fairly consistent across the range, is extremely easy to use. In capture mode, there are options to set exposure compensation, manual focus, white balance, spot metering, ISO, image size from 2,272 x 1,704 down to 640 x 480, compression levels, flash levels, and picture effects. There is also a scene selection mode that offers presets for twilight, night portrait, and landscape. While useful, this is extremely limited when compared to some other digital cameras, such as the easy-to-use Nikon Coolpix 2500 or the endlessly configurable Casio QV-4000.

    The image quality is what you would expect of a 4-megapixel camera--plenty of detail and scope for cropping to get just the right composition. When using the automatic settings, the images were not as sharp as expected, although this can be compensated for using the in-camera sharpening. Both exposure and white balance were generally accurate, but it would have been nice to see the ability to take a manual white-balance reading like on the Nikon 2500. To its credit, the DSC-P9 has a powerful autofocus illuminator that greatly aids focusing in poor light conditions.

    One feature we feel should be included in a camera of this quality is an orientation sensor that automatically rotates images when stored to match the photographs as taken. Despite this we would still recommend the DSC-P9 as being one of the sexiest high-resolution cameras available. --Nick Baxter ... Read more

    Features

    • 4-megapixel sensor captures 2,272 x 1,704 images for prints at sizes up to 11 x 14 inches
    • 3x optical plus 2x digital (6x total) autofocus zoom lens
    • Included 16 MB Memory Stick holds approximately 15 images at default resolution
    • Connects with Macs and PCs via USB port
    • Uses rechargeable lithium-ion battery (included)

    Reviews (36)

    2-0 out of 5 stars it does not like dark, does not like flashes
    i bought this camera a few days ago.
    my co-worker loved this camera, and told me to buy this one repeatedly, since it's such a good camera. so, i did. and, i was disappointed immediately, when i took first few photos. i took so many pictures indoor, trying to find out what was wrong. it didn't seem to focus right in dark with flash light. pictures come out fuzzy, blurry.... :<
    so, i returned it after a few days try... got Sony Dsc-S85.
    DSC-S85 worked much better, taking much better pictures at the same price. if you like to carry a camera in your pocket all day long, DSC-P9 may be way to go, but, if you want better picture, clearer picture... get DSC S85... its twice more functions and it is twice clearer imo... i am very happy with DSC S85 even though it's heavier. DSC P9 didn't cut it for me.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Love this camera but...
    I love this camera, size and picture quality wise. I did a lot of research and I chose this over the Nikon or Canon because I wanted an underwater housing for it and one wasn't available for those at the time. ... I have tried to get one from Sony but have been unable to do so because I live outside the US. The quality of the pictures is great and I often crop and blow up sections and the quality is still great, although I don't have other brands to compare to. My main problem with the camera is that so few of the features that I want to change from picture to picture are available manually (i.e. on the menu screen)e.g. high, normal or low level flash; Center focus or multipoint focus etc; portrait, macro or landscape mode; twilight, full-sun or shade, most of these features cannot be manually set by the dial on the trot. While scanning through menu features on the screen you miss your picture moment. There is loads of space on the manual dial for these features to be added on the next model of this camera and then I would give it 5 stars. I think if you change settings often another camera might be better. I didn't think that so many basic settings would be unavailable by manual dial. I am still trying to get the underwater housing.

    I would now add that I was finally able to get the underwater housing from Amazon and love it. I am finding the lack of quick change from flash: (off, on, auto, red-eye, low, normal, high) a particular irritant especially since, as I have now realised that low light pictures are not that great. Outdoor pictures however, are superb, especially pictures in and around water, which given where we live are the majority of my photos. Red-eye is turned off and on from the setup menu, a major pain and so I rarely, if ever use it and choose to correct red-eye by software. Low, normal and high flash levels are turned off by the menu, again a pain! I think they should all have been alterable using the flash on, off, auto button on the back of the camera. I am still working on finetuning the manual controls to get better indoor/low-light shots. I hope the new DSCP-10 has improved on these things.
    Unlike another reviewer, I have been able to take excellent macro photos of orchids and butterflies, I'd say as close as about 10 inches.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Sony Cameras Have Fatal Flaw
    Although the camera is fine, the memory card format represents a fatal flaw that prospective buyers should consider. The memory cards are prone to format errors (Format Error 13-01) which can cause you to lose your photos. We have 8 memory sticks and have had problems with all but 3 of them. I recommend that any one considering a Sony camera purchase do a Google Search using search terms: Sony format error "13-01" to discover what disgruntled Sony owners are saying about this problem.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Battery Issues
    I had my camera about a year when it stopped charging fully. It is supposed to get 120mins on a full battery and only got 20. After trying two new batteries I called Sony to be advised that they would look at it for a cost of $180!!! It would have cost me around $200 with shipping! The only people allowed to service Sonys are Sony. You can't bring it someplace else. Kind of like a Volvo in that respect. Moral of the story, when buying a camera make sure it is something that your local camera store can fix.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent pictures but not in low-light
    This camera is top notch in many ways.
    I gave it only 4 stars because of one thing: low-light shots.
    Someone wrote that if you set the flash power manually to highest, it produces good low-light pictures. Unfortunately it's not true. I wish it would be. This camera is worse in low-light shots than the competition. Believe me.
    It's your decision: if you can handle this, buy it, because otherwise it takes excellent pictures in normal lightning conditions. If low-light, night and indoor shots (with poor back-light) is important for you, look at the Canon S45 or S400 instead. ... Read more


    20. Sony DSCP51 Cyber-shot 2MP Digital Camera w/ 2x Optical Zoom
    by Sony
    list price: $349.99
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B000066EW5
    Catlog: Photography
    Manufacturer: Sony
    Sales Rank: 1229
    Average Customer Review: 3.66 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Amazon.com Product Description

    Sony's affordable DSC-P51 combines a 2-megapixel sensor, 2x zoom lens, and AA battery power in a pocket-sized package. If you're shopping for a family point-and-shoot that's easy to use, versatile, and small enough to take anywhere, the P51 is a great choice.

    Optics and Resolution
    The DSC-P51's 2-megapixel sensor captures enough detail for sharp prints at sizes up to 8 by 10 inches. For the typical family photographer, 2 megapixels is a great balance between price and performance. If you want a camera with even more resolution, you'll need to step up to a 3- or 4-megapixel model like the DSC-P71 or DSC-P9.

    The autofocus lens features both a 2x optical zoom and a 3x digital zoom. Remember, however, that digital zoom tends to reduce the sharpness and detail of your image, so it's a good idea to use it sparingly. In low-light situations (a particular weakness for many digital cameras), a focus-assist lamp sends out a small patterned beam to help the camera accurately determine distance, and special circuitry automatically reduces the "static" that typically plagues nighttime digital shots.

    To compose your images, either use the traditional camera viewfinder or the 1.6-inch LCD display (which is also used to review the shots you've taken). Having both types of viewfinders offers the best of both worlds: if you're used to using a film camera or want to conserve battery life, use the viewfinder. If you want to see exactly the picture you'll be capturing, use the LCD display.

    More Features
    Though the P51 is designed for point-and-shoot simplicity, there are several options for more adventurous photographers, including manual focus with macro, adjustable ISO and white-balance settings, exposure compensation, and the ability to shoot black-and-white, sepia, solarized, and negative images.

    Power
    The P51 uses two AA batteries--a pair of high-capacity nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) rechargeables and charger are included. The benefit to using standard AA batteries instead of a custom proprietary battery is that AA batteries are widely available, so missing a once-in-a-lifetime shot due to dead batteries won't be an issue. The downside is that a digital camera will kill a set of alkaline batteries extremely quickly, especially if you're using the camera's LCD display. To ensure you'll be ready for action, we recommend getting a second pair of batteries so you can always have one set in the camera and the other set in the charger.

    Movie Mode
    In movie mode, the camera captures silent video clips. Most digital cameras' movie modes are limited to 15- or 30-second clips, but in EX mode, the P51 can keep shooting until you've filled the memory card. The limited resolution of your movies guarantees that this feature won't replace your camcorder, but it's perfect for when you just want to capture a quick movie and e-mail it to a friend or relative.

    Storage and Transfer
    Images are stored on Memory Sticks, Sony's proprietary memory-card format. The included 16 MB stick holds approximately 24 images at the camera's default settings. Memory Sticks are reusable, but if you tend to take more than 24 images per outing, then you'll want a bigger card. A 128 MB stick is a great size for this camera, storing around 200 images. To transfer images to your computer, simply attach the included USB cable between your PC and your camera. Your computer should automatically recognize your camera and let you move the pictures to your hard drive. If you own a Sony desktop or laptop, your computer may already have a built-in Memory Stick reader.

    Size
    At 5 by 2.4 by 1.75 inches and 10.4 ounces fully loaded, the P51 is a very compact and portable digital camera.

    Contents and Recommended Accessories
    The package includes the DSC-P51 camera, two rechargeable NH-AA-D1 rechargeable batteries, BC-CS1 charger, video and USB cables, wrist strap, 16 MB Memory Stick, and software on CD.

    Everything you need to get started is included in the box, but we recommend these accessories to make the most of your camera: a carrying case, a spare set of NiMH rechargeable size AA batteries, and a higher-capacity memory stick. Compatible accessories for this camera are listed near the top of this page.

    ... Read more

    Features

    • 2-megapixel sensor captures 1,600 x 1,200 images for prints at sizes up to 8 x 10 inches
    • Autofocus lens with 2x optical zoom and 3x digital zoom
    • Includes MSA-16A 16MB Memory Stick® media
    • Connects with PCs and Macs via USB port
    • Uses 2 AA batteries (rechargeables included)

    Reviews (50)

    5-0 out of 5 stars You can't do any better than this one
    Very easy to use, takes great pictures and has a nice quality feel.I found battery life to be very good,I have heard of other cameras only capable of 20-30 shots before batteries were gone.I just used this camera on vacation ,took 50+ shots in 1 day {I was using a 128mb memerory stick,highly recommend} and the batteries never got below the 50 % range.I would also recommend the acc. kit for this camera , you get a very nice case and 2 extra batteries and a charger that charges in 2 hours instead of 14 hours.Over all, very impressed with this camera.You can't go wrong with this quality Sony product.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Decent price for a decent camera
    This camera is the best in its class. Sony includes many features that set it apart from other brands, including easy to use menus, power saving feature, and size. The battery life is excellent; I was able to take just under 200 pictures on one charge. Normal batties can be used, but won't last longer than 15 or 20 minutes. At highest quality, you can get 30 pictures on the supplied 16MB memory stick. Pictures come out very well, although a macro setting would be nice to have. Multi burst and video are also handy features to have. Overall, this camera is a very good value for the money. You can get by with the included accessories, but other camera accessories can be expensive.

    Pros:
    * Comes with battery
    * Comes with charger
    * Comes with 16 MB memory stick
    * Menus are simple and easy to use
    * Includes USB cable
    * Effects and camera settings (shutter time, white balance, etc) should satisfy the average person

    Cons:
    * Batteries must be charged to retrieve data from camera with USB cable
    * 13 hour charge time with included battery charger
    * NiMH batterys, while cheaper than LiIon batteries, have memory effect (They're only $...though and are supposed to last at least a year under normal conditions)

    Note: Don't leave the the batteries in below freezing temperatures, as it will shorten the battery life.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Good camera- until it stops working
    I really loved this camera- until the screen recently went black and all pictures came out black as well. I wanted to get another Sony because of the ease of use and decent pics I got (don't like my dad's Olympus camera, have to use the manual just to figure out how to turn it on). However, I read the reviews and found out I had the same problem as many other people. I looked up reviews for other Sony models, and they had problems as well. Guess I won't be getting another Sony.

    2-0 out of 5 stars for those with black screen problem
    I also have had the black screen experience but I've found that you can temporarily correct the problem most of the time:
    Reseting the camera by pressing the button located at the bottom
    Striking the camera against your hand
    For my camera, I think the problem resides in some bad connections.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Do not buy SONY cameras
    LSD display went black! I think this will happen with all Sony cameras! I have 2 cameras Sony DSC-P51 and Sony DSC-P72 and both cameras LSD display went black!
    One after 6 mns and 2nd one after 11 mns. ... Read more


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