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Having trouble picking a new P&S Camera

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November 1, 2009 4:18:24 AM

Hi guys, I wanted to pick up a new camera, in reality, this would be my first camera purchase, as I've always mooched off family members cameras at events and such. I'm trying to find a camera for myself that's within my budget range ($250~ area) that is the best bang I can get for my buck.

The camera I'm looking for would be used for many different types of shots (indoor and outdoor) as I do a lot of travel and want to take snapshots of the places I go to (Philly, NYC, many places in the tri-state area). In particular I'd want to bring this camera with me to events for video game competitions, so being able to get good shots of people playing on TVs/monitors would be a concern.

One final thing of really great interest to me is being able to record video in HD. I've noticed that many cameras can do 720P @ 30fps without a sweat, this would be an extremely valuable asset in whatever I buy because I could use it to record intense gaming matches (specifically fighting games).

I've actually had a lot of experience with cameras in the past (I took a couple years of digital arts classes) but when it comes to shopping, well, I'm not so hot. Especially because I haven't been involved with photography in so long I have no idea what the current trends are or anything. An easy to use camera would be nice, but I'm smart enough to read an instruction manual so that isn't very important. Size is a so-so important factor as long as if can fit in my bag I'll be happy.

Is there any camera with such features that would be the bread winner? I was looking at maybe getting this camera, but I wanted to hear some expert opinions first:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002LITT6U/ref=s9_simz...

The one thing that confuses me about this camera is the Wide Angle Optical Image it states in the title. Does it mean like, fish eye lens type of wide? I don't really know what it means.

Or perhaps this older model?

http://www.amazon.com/Canon-PowerShot-SD780IS-Stabilize...

Let me know what you think and if you have any suggestions please feel free to give them to me with some explanations and I'd really appreciate it!

~Thanks

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Anonymous
November 1, 2009 7:37:16 AM

The full title of this feature is Wide Angle Optical Image Stabilised or, in other words, anti-shake.

This seems like a good choice of camera -- it's small and yet you still get an optical viewfinder. That's priority for me having struggled with seeing what I'm trying to frame on a screen obscured by reflections in bright sunlight.

Only Canon seem to realise the importance of this -- and the resulting other benefit of being able to turn off the screen to preserve the battery.
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November 1, 2009 8:44:13 AM

I was actually more interested in the newer model because I figured I'd never use the optical viewfinder.
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Best solution

November 12, 2009 1:29:35 AM

kooper said:
I was actually more interested in the newer model because I figured I'd never use the optical viewfinder.


I found a review of the camera on cnet.com, here is the link. The 4x is the optical zoom, so if you are far away it may not get you as close as you want and digital zoom is totally worthless. Also, one other point I saw in the review is that you can not use the zoom while you are recording video.

I also found reviews for the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-H20 and Panasonic Lumix DMC-Zs3 on cnet. They both record 720p, have larger optical zoom and you can use the zoom while recording video.

Hope this helps you out.
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