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Help: Digital Cameras-Advice

GUEST,Green Eyed Lady 21 Apr 00 - 10:34 PM
catspaw49 21 Apr 00 - 11:52 PM
Sourdough 22 Apr 00 - 02:09 AM
GUEST,dwditty 22 Apr 00 - 06:46 AM
catspaw49 22 Apr 00 - 07:29 AM
Will Bakker 23 Apr 00 - 03:36 AM
Will Bakker 23 Apr 00 - 03:38 AM
Will Bakker 23 Apr 00 - 03:40 AM
Will Bakker 23 Apr 00 - 03:43 AM
GUEST,Les B 23 Apr 00 - 06:49 PM
Sorcha 23 Apr 00 - 07:08 PM
Jon Freeman 23 Apr 00 - 07:23 PM
catspaw49 23 Apr 00 - 07:24 PM
magician 23 Apr 00 - 07:46 PM
Bill D 23 Apr 00 - 11:28 PM
catspaw49 23 Apr 00 - 11:41 PM
Melbert 24 Apr 00 - 06:19 AM
Jo Taylor 03 May 00 - 06:17 PM
MK 12 Nov 00 - 12:10 PM
Bill D 12 Nov 00 - 02:46 PM
Roger in Sheffield 12 Nov 00 - 03:11 PM
JTT 12 Nov 00 - 03:31 PM
weststar 27 Nov 00 - 01:20 PM
GUEST,Arkie 27 Nov 00 - 04:27 PM
Jon Freeman 27 Nov 00 - 04:56 PM
IvanB 28 Nov 00 - 02:15 PM
Bill D 28 Nov 00 - 02:53 PM
Roger in Sheffield 29 Nov 00 - 01:53 PM
Gervase 30 Nov 00 - 10:35 AM
Bill D 30 Nov 00 - 10:44 AM
Roger in Sheffield 07 Jul 01 - 10:22 AM
Bill D 07 Jul 01 - 10:39 AM
Louie Roy 07 Jul 01 - 11:02 AM
IvanB 07 Jul 01 - 03:37 PM
Bill D 07 Jul 01 - 03:56 PM
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Subject: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: GUEST,Green Eyed Lady
Date: 21 Apr 00 - 10:34 PM

Please forgive the non-musical nature of this thread request but as primarily a lurker, I have noticed Mudcatter's willingness to impart advice and help in situations not necessarily related to music.

I am in the market for a good digital camera. Like any new emerging technology, I have been sitting back patiently for the past couple of years waiting for the general prices to drop, while more and more features are added. I've come to the conclusion that the market has started bottoming out, and am ready to consider a purchase.

The things I am looking for in a digital camera are first and foremost, clarity, crispness and sharpness of image, something that will support high pixelization, even saturation of color, and secondary, zoom capability, large memory, long battery life, built in flash, and preferably a method using some sort of floppy adapter to get the images into the computer as opposed to futzing with connecting wires from the camera to the USB port on the back of my computer every time I want to transfer images.

A friend of mine has a top of the line Olympus which I've been impressed with but it sells in the range of around 1000.00 U.S. (I'd like to get away with spending less than this if I can.) As well as being a musician, I am also an amateur photographer and have always used Nikon equipment, and am wondering whether there are good digital cameras (without breaking the bank) that have fully automatic capability with manual overide which would allow one to manually set exposure lengths, F-stops, and shutter speeds, and accommodate the capabilities mentioned in the previous paragraphs....in other words something like an old black bodied Nikon FE, only a digital cousin.

The main uses of this camera would be business related images for my website, and also for taking family photos and eventually saving them to CD Rom.

Those of you who are knowledgable in this field, please give me your recommendations, and rough price of what I should expect to pay...and also any advice on dedicated photo quality color ink jet printers.

Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: catspaw49
Date: 21 Apr 00 - 11:52 PM

Just noticed this thread.......

I spent two weeks seriously researching the digital camera market in December. First, I too was looking for a floppy, but believe me, the card thing is simple and the way to go. The software programs that come with the cameras and others are excellent and you will have a far greater capability for fewer bucks.

I beat my head against the wall, read everything in sight, was ALL OVER the web and we bought a Nikon 800 (same as the 700 but with a mech and digital zoom both). We couldn't be happier and I think you'll find that most of the mags and such will agree that the Nikon 700 is a hot ticket. SUPERB clarity with far more capabilities than I'll ever use and still the ease of a "Point and Shoot." I added a card reader that is permanently hooked into the computer and saves a lot of screwing around. Everything else you mention it has in spades. I cannot say enough great things about this little jewel. Its simply fantastic!!!

I got the entire package, the works, software,card reader, case, EVERYTHING, for $650.00 US.........And BTW, ALL the digitals are hard on batteries.....rechargable is best.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Sourdough
Date: 22 Apr 00 - 02:09 AM

You can get a little better deal now from Camera world. THey normally sell the camera for 699.00 but there is now a Nikon rebate plus "100 Bonus Bucks and a free basic color printer. I just got this e-mail ad from them:

FREE 16MB Memory Card* when you buy Nikon's Coolpix 950 Digital camera -- a value of $50. You'll also qualify for a $100 rebate from Nikon good until June 30, 2000. Plus, you'll receive 100 Bonus Bucks** from cameraworld.com!

www.cameraworld.com/adtemponline.asp?invky=82611

PRINT YOUR DIGITAL PHOTOS

FREE Canon Color Bubble Jet Printer BJC-2110* when you purchase any digital camera over $399.99 -- a $99 value.

www.cameraworld.com/digitalspring.asp

Sourdough


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: GUEST,dwditty
Date: 22 Apr 00 - 06:46 AM

I just bought a Canon Powershot S10 (I think the S20 is just coming out now)- very compact (I have small kids so basically I was looking for a small camera for snapshots with the capability to do other stuff as well.) - fully featured. The USB thing works great - I just keep the cable attached to the port so I don't have to monkey around with the back of the computer. This camera uses flash cards or, optionally, an IBM 340 MB microdrive which holds the equivalent of 45 rolls of film. There are some really cool things you can do with digital - effects, stitch several pictures together for panoramas etc. And yes, you will need rechargeable batteries - 6 or so. The little video screen eats them up pretty fast. You can turn the video off, but I have found that I don't want to. Enjoy.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: catspaw49
Date: 22 Apr 00 - 07:29 AM

I'd recommend the card reader to anyone as its simple and quick and uses no "battery" power from the camera.

Sourdough, that is a good deal....The 950 has features I know I'd never use, but its a super camera....and that is one HELLUVA price with the "extras" they're offering. The 950 is a bit larger unit, but its great.

Hey Davis....The S10 was the other choice for us and I'm glad to hear that you're happy with yours. A always wonder when I decide on something, how my other choices wouls have worked out. The Canon measured up well against the Nikon and the price was a somewhat better too. Happy to know I'd have been happy either way......and I wish we could have met for coffee or something on your NC trip to compare!!!

One point that several articles discussed was which was better.......Do you buy a digital camera from a computer company (ie, Hewlett-Packard) or from an optics company (ie, Nikon).......made for some good reading, but there are great cameras being produced by both and I don't really think its an issue.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Will Bakker
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 03:36 AM

Ive been thinking about a digital camera myself and haven't decided yet. It might help if you go to


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Will Bakker
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 03:38 AM

Go to


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Will Bakker
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 03:40 AM

Last attempt: go here


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Will Bakker
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 03:43 AM

Making folkmusic is much easier than making purple clicky things!


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: GUEST,Les B
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 06:49 PM

Like Green Eyed Lady, I too am interested in the new digital gear, and am used to the old Nikon. I have shot with a Sony Mavica at work and liked it except for the fact that outdoors, in bright sunshine, the viewfinder was extremely hard to see, making precise framing difficult. What I am more curious about, however, is how people are using the images - web site development, sending e-mail photos to the relatives, posting porn (just kidding), or what ??? I am also fascinated by the idea of "stitching" images together for panoramas - I just stumbled onto a Kodak site last night on the web and saw some great examples of this 360 degree technology. They also have a specialized camera (and a tripod, I think) for doing this - at a price of about $1350 U.S. I knew a guy who was developing a CD several years ago on Lewis & Clark, and he had some very expensive software and a fast computer to do this with. Now it sounds accessible to all. Comments, please !


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Sorcha
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 07:08 PM

My $.02 worth--and bear in mind that I don't know aspargus about this stuff. Howsomever, the PD (Honey) just bought 6 digitals and software, card readers, re chargers, etc. They are Nikon 950's and they are VERY happy with them. Honey said each camera was about $500, but I don't know if that included the software, reader and batteries. They only bought 1 reader, and 3 chargers. (Grant $$) The cameras have zoom, auto focus, variable wide angle, and can take a photo of say a large think like a car, or a very small thing like a finger tip with excellent resolution. They can see the whorls, ridges etc. on a finger tip well enough for print ID purposes. They are VERY ez to use, just mostly point and shoot.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 07:23 PM

Well my dad has told me I can have his old Pentax ME Super. That should keep me ammused for a few years before I go digital. I wouldn't mind a digital but they are still to expensive for me.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: catspaw49
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 07:24 PM

Fpr "semipro use" and pro features at a minimum cost, the Nikon 950 is hard to beat.....period. The 700 and 800 are simpler usage versions with almost the same clarity that Sorcha described, the 800 also including the optical zoom.

Every reviewer sang the praises of the Nikon line and I know I'll never use all the features of the 800, but its small and simple (the 950 is larger, more pro-like) and does what 90% of the buyers want IN SPADES!!!

Skip the Sony......No comparison to the Nikon.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: magician
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 07:46 PM

for the greneyed lady must be sony mavica FD83+

this gives you all yuor requirements, but if like me you are shutter happy you will need loads of floppies

i've found that i can fit all (inluding a spare batterie in a large bumbag)

keep on snapping

still need A spellung Chucker


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Bill D
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 11:28 PM

just saw today,at a friend's, a Casio 3.1Megapixel..wow!...it has a mini-disk instead of a card....which means 900-2000 photos on one disk...(340 Megabyte I think)...no, they are NOT cheap, and my Olympus 2000 2.1Megapixel will do just fine for awhile..you can get that for abt.$600 right now...


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: catspaw49
Date: 23 Apr 00 - 11:41 PM

Yeah, what you can get in the big bucks range is really amazing ain't it?

Be sure to check the features for resolution too.

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Melbert
Date: 24 Apr 00 - 06:19 AM

I bought a digital camera about twelve months ago. I started with a Praktika, having had many years good and faithful service from my old Praktika SLR. I was very disappointed with the results. Like the guy above said, you couldn't use the viewfinder in bright sunlight, and it simply ate batteries. After a one week trial I returned it to the store and exchanged it for a Sanyo VPC-G250E with which I've been absolutely delighted. It cost £289 including software, spare batteries and charger. It uses smart media for storage. Number of pictures depends upon selected resolution but I get typically 50-60 pictures on a 4Mb card. Extra 4Mb cards cost around £10 here, and seem to be better value that the bigger capacity cards on a £per Mb basis. Battery life is excellent, and the camera offers "ACTION"mode of ten frames per second, or even the ability to take short video clips of about 5 secs each. Digital zoom operates only on low resolution setting though. Editing is provided on camera with ability to scan action or video clips and save selected frames as stills, discarding the clips to free up space. One picture can be placed as an inset ito another if required, and short sound bytes can be added to shots. Transfer to PC is by cable connection to the serial port.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Jo Taylor
Date: 03 May 00 - 06:17 PM

Fuji make an adapter for Smart Media cards - the Smart Media slots into a carrier which then goes into the floppy drive. You download onto hard disk as if using a floppy.Saves using a port (didn't have a spare one anyway...)and saves on the camera's batteries, costs about £50 but well worth it.
Jo


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: MK
Date: 12 Nov 00 - 12:10 PM

Okay, I've been researching digital cameras myself for the last little while. I've decided that I definitely want something over 3 megapixels, with automatic settings but with full manual overides. I looked very closely at the Nikons (900s series) and can't get past the fact that I hate the design of them so they're out for me.

I want something that resembles and feels like a real camera...having already been spoiled by owning a black bodied Nikon FE for the past 20 years. I'm about 90% settled on the Olympus 3030, and am wondering if anyone else on this Forum has one, and how you find it (pros and cons) and whether anyone else here has any opinions on other 3+ megapixel cameras (model as well as pros and cons, smart media or micro drive usable.) Thanks in advance.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Bill D
Date: 12 Nov 00 - 02:46 PM

well, the guy I know who has the Casio..(see above)still likes it a lot...he goes off to England for 2 weeks and never fills his mini-disk, and the photos are very good..(you CAN fill one, of course, it you shoot lots of BIG pictures....but for decent snapshots, it is great..)...and at home, you can shoot ANY camera above 2 megapixels and get good 8x10 prints....it is mostly a matter of holding one in your hands and 'feeling' the features..This is how I decided against the Nikon with the rotating head...didn't like the feel of it. I have the Olympus 2000, and like the way they organize the menus...maybe the 3030 is similar.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 12 Nov 00 - 03:11 PM

Like Jon Freeman I am making do with a second hand pentax right now and scanning the prints in to the computer
Eventually I would like a digital but you start off looking at the bottom end of the market and soon talk yourself up to a hefty overdraft
Do you get aperture control on digitals? and how robust are they as I am a bit (Ok very) clumsy

Just balancing the equation
One new digital camera = 30 New Cd's = 240 pints of Guiness = lots of film + processing for my old pentax
there talked myself out of it again!
Roger


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: JTT
Date: 12 Nov 00 - 03:31 PM

For those at the more basic end of the market, a warning. I got a kind gift of a Umax Astracam 1000, which I'm still enjoying, but I have to work around its eccentricities: after I let it slide to the bottom of a rucksack with a mobile phone, it lost its ability to tell me how many shots were in it correctly, and seems to eat batteries even faster than usual; worse, it doesn't tell you when the batteries are out - you discover it when you bring the camera home and discover that all your prized photos are blue or pink squares.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: weststar
Date: 27 Nov 00 - 01:20 PM

Since April the interest may continue. I bought a Fuji finepix1400 in July. have used it extensively at work and on vacation. -About 80 shots on the 4 fancy type dbleAA batteries. -The SmartMedia cards hold the specified amount of data -the ability to view and discard shots immediately after you shoot them is a nice feature. -USB download is fast and easy. -by the time I finish my holiday shots I will have saved in processing about half of the $400 cost.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: GUEST,Arkie
Date: 27 Nov 00 - 04:27 PM

I have been using a Kodak, can't recall the model off the top of my ahead for about 2 years. It was using batteries up pretty fast until I began plugging the camera into a power unit when pictures were being transferredd. Since then, a lot fewer batteries. As for the card vs floppy disks you have to decide what is important. With the floppys you can view, change, print from most photo programs and on any computer that's handy. But you will only get four or five photos per disc. You will need lots of floppies. With the card, depending upon size and resolution you choose, you can get up to 40 or more photos. As as been said, you can view and edit out shots you do not want to keep. You are limited to transferring photos to a computer with compatible software. We keep our camera wires plugged in all the time and it is a simple matter of hooking to the camera and downloading. The higher the resolution the slower the download and many times the printed product is not much better for the higher resolutions, on our camera at least. When I began shopping for the camera I had intended to find one that used floppy discs, but got a good price on the one we chose and have been quite happy with what we have. One other consideration is that the higher the pixels the better quality photo, but also a much longer download time is required. One has to pick based upon what is most important.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 27 Nov 00 - 04:56 PM

As I mentioned before, I am on old technology but out of curiosity, what would you need to spend on a digital camera to get quality comparable to a reasonable SLR?

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: IvanB
Date: 28 Nov 00 - 02:15 PM

Jon, I have no experience beyond my use of one of the early Kodaks when I was still working (back in '98). It was OK for doing shots for posting on the network, but not for printing. PC Magazine says that 3 megapixels is about where the cameras start emulating SLR's, so we're still talking around $7-800 US minimum. Add to that the problem of low printer resolutions as alluded to by Arkie above, and you've got the cost of a high resolution printer to add to the equation if you want printed output. Also, good paper for printing long-lasting pictures is pretty expensive too, so a proper setup would probably still run around $2,000 US.

Prices are going down all the time, though, and now we're seeing 4 megapixel cameras coming on the market. I do like the idea that I could use a digital camera for image capture and then produce "slide shows" on a CD which my friends could view at their leisure (if they desired) on their own computers. I'm hankering for a digital, but it'll probably be late in 2001 or even 2002 before I spring for one.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Nov 00 - 02:53 PM

lots of combinations possible .....if you want to print, you need a printer(duh)...and you would have to buy paper, but you DONT have to print pics you don't like, so some savings there...we print only a few, using the camera mostly to have digital records of our crafts...(and to show the world what various Mudcaters looked like at the Getaway...*grin*) because Rita needed an enlarging copier for her craft work, we got a combo printer/copier/scanner...but there are quite decent printers for $200US or less (we had a little Epson that was nice for about $129 till we gave it to kid going to college)..you CAN buy special fast gadgets to transfer pics from camera to computer, but we have made do with just serial port and patience. Our NEXT item will be a CD burner, so we can store any size image cheaply....thus making it possible to shoot more detailed pics..(at 2 million pixels+ you can print really decent 8x10s...but they eat up HD space really fast)

so....answer is, to shoot digital AND print ...$600-$1800, depending on your budget and needs desires....to store LOTS of images add $180-$400 for CD burner....other gadgets optional...You can print pretty durn good pics on a cheaper paper..(in between super photo paper and copier paper...sort of semi-gloss)


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 29 Nov 00 - 01:53 PM

I am confused
Do Digital cameras have any manual aperture/ shutter settings
Do they even have apertures or shutters?

Roger


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Gervase
Date: 30 Nov 00 - 10:35 AM

Roger, the really grown-up ones have all that you'd expect of a decent SLR (the Nikon and Canon versions of the Kodak digi-body for example).
Moving down the scale to the compacts, many of the better ones (Canon, Olympus, Sony) have some degree of manual over-ride - in that you can adjust the exposure a couple of stops either way. But, if you want to retain total control, you're stuck with buying a very expensive bit of kit.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Bill D
Date: 30 Nov 00 - 10:44 AM

sure..my Olympus has white balance, aperture & shutter priority, programmed mode(auto)..flash override, close-up mode, spot metering....etc.etc..also has timer (10 sec)AND remote control..(point, click, and you have 2 sec. to hide the clicker and smile)...

takes months to learn it all..or you can just point and shoot


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Roger in Sheffield
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:22 AM

Hmmm I think I got one of those too Bill
The best thing about it for me is the speed - no waiting days for prints to come back. As a hobby I do a little botany and I have already used my camera to send in a record of a grass new to my area. Before I would have written the details on paper and sent them in, this time I used the picture as a background and used a photoedit program to write the date and grid reference on the picture before emailing it in.

I have a friend who is employed as an ecologist and every now and then she finds plants that she is unsure of, if I could just get her to use a digital camera and email a picture it would be so much easier. At the moment I get vague descriptions (by email) to go on - or dried up bits of plant through the post. I know she could take 'real' photos instead but there is always that time lag while you wait for the roll of film to be full before processing and she often needs an ID quickly.

In future I will take both cameras on holiday, the digital for snapping everything in sight, and the trusty pentax for arty plant close ups.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 10:39 AM

well!...I had forgotten about this thread!......yes, Roger, having both cameras gives you LOTS of options, and the best slides are still 'technically' better than most digitals...and for some submissions of photos to craft fairs, ONLY slides are accepted..(they can project them for a committee to view easily)...but I'll bet the day is coming when digital pics will also be ok.

(Now, just last night I photographed a pretty moth on my back porch in macro mode and made SURE I had a decent picture while it was still there.)


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Louie Roy
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 11:02 AM

You can spend a lot of money for a digital or if you want a good one cheap go to ebay and you can get a good used one for 1/4 of the cost of a new one.I bought a kodak D C 210 for $200.00 and it takes as good a pictures as the $1000.00 models.When printing them off of the computer you will get only as good a picture as the paper you use.I guess it depends on how much money you want to spend.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: IvanB
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 03:37 PM

I'm looking at digital cameras with the thought of possibly purchasing one for an upcoming trip to England. Right now, the newer Olympuses are looking pretty good to me.

Bill D, what resolution do you usually use on your Olympus? What storage medium? And how many pics can you get at one time? Are you carrying a laptop with you for offloading or do you offload entirely onto a desktop?

Sorry to be so nosy, but I'd appreciate any info you can give me, and assume others reading this thread would be interested as well.


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Subject: RE: Help: Digital Cameras-Advice
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Jul 01 - 03:56 PM

well, one 8meg 'card' came with the camera...I immediately bought a 32 meg card...it will hold 470 or so small (50meg)pictures (little snapshot type for documenting stuff you don't expect to print)...or 30+ HUGE ones...and several levels in between. I seldom use the extremes. Most of the 'smaller' pics I take are around 130,000 bytes and the larger ones are about 375,000-400,000 bytes....they can be cropped easily that way and still have good detail, while being smaller.

You can get a quite decent 4x5 print from 130,000 bytes...and a decent 8x10 from 350,000...so, it's a matter of what you intend to do...you CAN take a few big ones and many small ones on the same card etc., and so far, I have not been out long enough to use up both cards. There are portable storage devices you can buy, but I've spent enough $$$ for now..*grin* a laptop would be one solution, but extra cards are a bit cheaper unless you need a laptop for other stuff.

Go to a decent camera store and look at stuff...then go online and check prices, you may save a bunch.

Hope that helps.


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