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Author Topic: What kind of camera  (Read 4958 times)

Jim Fitz

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What kind of camera
« on: April 07, 2016, 10:18:56 PM »
I haven't bought a camera in 20 years.  Use my smart phone, but am looking at going FT in the next year, and wandering the country.  Would like to get a decent quality camera without spending big bucks. 

It sure is nice now that we have digital cameras out there....I sure spent a lot of money years ago developing pictures.

Thanks.

Jim
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Tom

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2016, 10:53:00 PM »
You'll find a range of opinions here, from smartphones to full-featured DSLRs, with bridge cameras in between. Personally, I haven't had good results with a smartphone, although some folks get great results. I'll defer to the experts.
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EdS

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2016, 11:34:59 PM »
There are great makes fo most budgets from Nikon.. Canon.. Sony.. Fuji... Olympic. For basic photography, most of these will give you great performance! On a smaller budget, I would suggest a camera not requiring a ton of expensive accessories.. a DSLR with a kit lens is OK for most folks needs... but some of the smaller cameras with built in lenses can be great. Fuji makes a few that are quite good!

SeilerBird

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #3 on: April 08, 2016, 05:51:21 AM »
That is a loaded question right now. I got tired of dragging a camera around that was the size of a microwave oven a few years ago and I started using my cell phone for all my photography and never looked back. The best cell phone cameras are on par with the best DSLRs today. No you can't blow up the photos to the size of a billboard and you can't photograph tiny birds in flight far away, but for just about everything else they are equal or better. You will hear some people dispute this but they are the ones who have a huge financial interest in their current system and refuse to understand technology marches on. If you look in my signature you will see a link to my 100 favorite photos from 2015. Almost every one was taken with a cell phone.
I would like to apologize to anyone I have not yet offended. Please be patient and I will get to you shortly.
My new Pixel camera:
https://photos.app.goo.gl/rMSw5eVkCfKuuEOP2
My portfolio:
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My Grand Canyon shots:
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workerdrone

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #4 on: April 08, 2016, 07:03:45 AM »
One type of camera that's a lot of fun for travel is the ruggedized and waterproof point and shoot - while the pictures might be about the same quality as a cell phone (which is pretty good these days), the freedom of having a camera with you at all times that you can just knock around, drop in the sand, wash off under the sink, and take underwater or in the water with you can't be beat sometimes.

Everyone will drop their camera sometime, when you drop one of these you just smile :)

The GoPro Hero series is one type that you see everywhere but they are a bit awkward to use as a normal camera and can get expensive with all the accessories -

Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, and a couple other companies are all making well rated versions of these.  I have an slightly different interchangeable lens version from Nikon (AW1) that will take any of the Nikon 1 lenses from 18-810mm equivalent, it's sort of a middle quality between cellphones and true slr's.  But for the average traveler I'd recommend one of the fixed lens options.
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Hammster

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2016, 07:18:09 AM »
One type of camera that's a lot of fun for travel is the ruggedized and waterproof point and shoot - while the pictures might be about the same quality as a cell phone (which is pretty good these days), the freedom of having a camera with you at all times that you can just knock around, drop in the sand, wash off under the sink, and take underwater or in the water with you can't be beat sometimes.

Everyone will drop their camera sometime, when you drop one of these you just smile :)

Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, and a couple other companies are all making well rated versions of these.

I really agree with this. My DSLR, and associated garnishes will always be first and foremost for me. However, I also have an Olympus Tough TG-3 point and shoot. TG-4 recently came out with more bells and whistles including RAW capture. Anyway, my TG-3 has been dropped onto an asphalt driveway and survived without a scratch. It also has been fully submerged in saltwater when I rolled my kayak. Still works like a charm.
When I was researching the rugged point and shoot styles, at the time a lot of the reviewers liked certain brands over others for certain features but the same sort of sentiment was shared. That was they always came back to that Olympus over all the others. A lot of good informative reviews online for the various brands.
If you have any local camera shops, go and check out what they have and play with them a bit in the store.
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Larry N.

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #6 on: April 08, 2016, 07:51:09 AM »
Quote
Would like to get a decent quality camera without spending big bucks. 

As Tom J. says, there will be all kinds of opinions here. But with your statement above, if big bucks means more than $200-$300, and if you're looking beyond the pocket computer most folks call a phone these days, then look at Best Buy, Costco, etc. at what they have in your price range and you'll likely find a Canon, Nikon, Olympus or Sony to your liking.

Or, you could go to http://www.dpreview.com/ and sort through their reviews. They get more detailed than most folks want, or even understand, but skimming specs and comments can give you some very useful insight into the various models and their relative ease of use, picture quality, etc.
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #7 on: April 08, 2016, 08:13:05 AM »
If you are interested enough to want interchangeably lenses, you need to step up to a DSLR, probably Nikon or Canon. Next step down is a larger body camera with a top quality but non-changeable "mega-zoom" lens. Canon, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic and a few others make some great ones for around $300-$400. If that's still "big bucks", consider the pocket-size zoom cameras from Canon, Nikon and Sony. They have decent zoom lens, drop in a pocket easily and can make some amazing photos and videos, all for $100-$200. These still make photos than can be enlarged a bit and handle difficult lighting conditions. The next tier down includes most smart phones cameras, many of which do a darn good job or casual photos.
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SeilerBird

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #8 on: April 08, 2016, 08:17:53 AM »
I totally agree with the idea of getting a sports camera. They are rugged, can go anywhere and still take amazing photos. There is a line of accessories that allow you to attach the camera to just about anything you wish and get point of view images from any point of view you can imagine.
I would like to apologize to anyone I have not yet offended. Please be patient and I will get to you shortly.
My new Pixel camera:
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Tom

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #9 on: April 08, 2016, 08:52:48 AM »
With the caveat that I'm predominantly a point-and-shooter, I like the handling/touchy feely of my bridge camera (non-interchangeable zoom lens). It's a little smaller than my DSLR and significantly lighter. If I know I'll be taking photos, it's out of its case most of the time, and is easy & comfortable to hold single-handed.

Meanwhile, I increasingly find myself leaving the bridge camera behind, and reaching for the smartphone on my belt. I'm hoping my next phone will have a more user-friendly screen and camera. On this one, I can't see the screen in our California sun and, even when I can, the resulting pictures are almost always a disappointment.
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SeilerBird

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #10 on: April 08, 2016, 09:02:19 AM »
I got me an annual pass to Disney World a few months ago and I have been there six times recently. I estimate that I see about 100 cell phone photographers to ever conventional photographer. And about 9 out of 10 of the conventional photographers are using a bridge camera. Seeing a DSLR photographer is a rare event. I am currently using an LG G4 which has one of the best cameras in a cell phone on the market. And it only costs $300.

http://www.amazon.com/LG-G4-Unlocked-Leather-Warranty/dp/B01774WPQ8/ref=sr_1_2?s=wireless&ie=UTF8&qid=1460123864&sr=1-2&keywords=g4

It is almost impossible to take a bad photo with it. 16 MP Camera with f/1.8 low-light lens, Manual Mode, Optical Image Stabilization, Laser Autofocus, and high-res image sensors. It comes with a host of great features and my favorite is voice control. Point the camera, say "cheese" and it takes the photo. No pressing buttons, no shaking the camera. Then you can email it or post it on Facebook almost instantly. Another thing I love is that my entire photo collection is in my pocket at all times so if I wish to show off any photo it is right there.
I would like to apologize to anyone I have not yet offended. Please be patient and I will get to you shortly.
My new Pixel camera:
https://photos.app.goo.gl/rMSw5eVkCfKuuEOP2
My portfolio:
https://goo.gl/photos/Cx4SaYhGfYFShSty7
My Grand Canyon shots:
https://photos.app.goo.gl/Nc1AT8tQp25wJwfm1

workerdrone

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #11 on: April 08, 2016, 06:37:19 PM »
If you're interested in the rugged option, this might get you started:

http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-waterproof-camera/

Another bonus for these cameras - you can just hand them to kids :)  Who knows, they might get some neat shots while they're having fun with your gadget, at no stress to you!
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Jim Fitz

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #12 on: April 08, 2016, 08:20:21 PM »
I really appreciate all the inputs.  Now I have some great ideas for when the kids say "Dad, what do you want for your birthday."

Jim
Retired AF Navigator
Camped over many years in pretty much everything.  Just gettin started as a Full Timer....lovin it so far.

MN Blue Skies

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #13 on: April 08, 2016, 11:46:36 PM »
DH and I both use DSLRs for professional portrait photography.  I think we have a couple of point and shoot cameras around somewhere but we never use them.  We only use our cell phones to take snapshots.  Our best resource for information is B & H Photo.  Check out their website for product info and reviews then call their photography department and ask their opinion.  We've been working with B & H almost exclusively for the last six years. 

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hanerykroze

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2016, 06:57:59 AM »
Last week I bought Nikon camera. It is nice and with in the budget. I cry it on the sight..
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DutchEagle

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #15 on: April 28, 2016, 09:07:48 AM »
After I lost my passion to teach photography (long story) I decided to scale down on weight and space for my equipment. I sold most of my lenses (CANON) and studio equipment and bought a Panasonic Lumix FZ1000. This is a bridge camera with a Leica lens 25-400mm 21mp. It also has awesome video capabilities (including 4K)

Although not as good as my Canon 7D it will do the trick. I'm not making money with my pictures but want to use high quality images for my website. This will do the trick for sure, it is ultra light and has "more lens" than my 5 lens setup with the Canon.

I still have the Canon 7D for sale (hint)

Next step I'm looking for a go-pro or similar solution to use as a dash cam and all weather cam.
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MN Blue Skies

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #16 on: April 29, 2016, 02:31:13 AM »
Dang it Dutch ... I deserve a whack. Eric and I should have invited you to join us.  :-[  Earlier this month we had the opportunity to meet and spend several hours with Ken Skulte.  You probably know that he is one of Canon's Explorers of Light. He was very generous with his time and gave us lots of tips including a demonstration on how he does light painting right down to the lighting formulas he used on several of his award winning images.  Of course Eric came home wanting a few gadgets that Ken recommended.

For those who aren't familiar with Ken's work he started out as a wedding photographer  :o and is now able to pursue his photography passions that include photographing the Milky Way, Aurora Borealis, lighting, hot lava flows, storm chasing, and race cars.  Here is a link to his work: https://www.usa.canon.com/internet/portal/us/home/explore/see-impossible/ken-sklute-aurora-borealis  and another link to his website:  http://serendipityvisuals.com/  Enjoy!
« Last Edit: April 29, 2016, 02:44:34 AM by MN Blue Skies »
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DutchEagle

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #17 on: April 29, 2016, 07:27:00 AM »
Dang it Dutch ... I deserve a whack.

You asked for it.... WHACK.... :'(   I hope you remember next time now :)

Earlier this month we had the opportunity to meet and spend several hours with Ken Skulte.  You probably know that he is one of Canon's Explorers of Light. He was very generous with his time and gave us lots of tips including a demonstration on how he does light painting right down to the lighting formulas he used on several of his award winning images.  Of course Eric came home wanting a few gadgets that Ken recommended.

I have seen his work before, very impressive, something I would like to do after we start traveling. This new camera is capable of capturing stuff like that. :) I know gadgets, a never ending story. It's a GAS addiction. (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) Thanks for the links :)

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MN Blue Skies

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #18 on: April 29, 2016, 04:35:56 PM »
This new camera is capable of capturing stuff like that. :)

I think it would be very hard to persuade Ken Skulte to replace his Canon 5d Mark III with a Lumix.  ;)  However I am curious about what body he uses for his videos.  Last year I was convinced we needed a Lumix for Hybrid Photography.  A Lumix Luminary, along with Dave J. at National, convinced me otherwise. Dutch, you probably know Dave J. 
 

A girl called Max, her husband Eric, Princess Kitty, and Molly the Service Dog in training.

2013 Cougar High Country 315 RES ( A 35' 5th Wheel)
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8Muddypaws

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #19 on: April 29, 2016, 06:15:07 PM »
Cellphone cameras are too limited.  Poor low light performance, prone to camera shake and a bit of a cliche' with all the people taking stupid selfies in public places.

The problem with snapshot cameras is that they usually don't give you access to the important settings like exposure time and aperture.  How are you going to control depth of field without those?  Generally they have vastly inferior lenses (but still better than most cellphones). Very little creative control.

I think the best place to shop for a camera is Amazon.  Millions of reviews and probably the best prices anywhere.  Don't be afraid of a used camera.

What's your budget?  If I had an unlimited budget I'd have a One of these and an assortment of lenses.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1244709-REG/hasselblad_h_3013742_h6d_100c_medium_format_dslr.html

But I somehow get by with a Canon T2i and a couple of good lenses and a Canon 12 MP pocket camera.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2016, 06:19:48 PM by 8Muddypaws »
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ArdraF

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #20 on: April 29, 2016, 09:12:08 PM »
Max, thanks for posting that link.  What gorgeous photos!  We seldom have such a clear sky and almost forget how beautiful the Milky Way is because we don't see it all that often.  That full photo with the Aurora and Milky Way is a reminder of how much we miss in our modern lives full of bright lights.

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Nomadb1

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #21 on: April 30, 2016, 08:58:26 AM »
As for a sports camera, I have a hero 2 so my info might be a bit dated but it could NEVER replace even a point n shoot. If used for what it's designed for - action shots/video it is fantastic! I.e. Mountain biking, motorcycle, running under the car at freeway speeds to diagnose that funny sound!? But the aspect ration of the lense really makes it useless for anything 50+ yards out. Tried using it for duck hunting on a gun mount the birds look like your skyscraping when they are well within gun range and same thing with bow hunting. A 20 yard deer looks great - a 40-50 yard deer looks like he's 75.

The sound that it captures leaves much to be desired especially if you have the waterproof enclosure on it. When I do interviews I make sure to leave the enclosure off as my first ice fishing experience with it(waterproof enclosure on) I could hear everything I was saying but whoever I was talking to, five feet away, was all muffled.

I had some disappointing first experiences. Since I've learned to work within this camera's limitations I've really had a lot of fun with it and made some great videos and memories but I'd never leave my backup PNS at home.
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Larry N.

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #22 on: April 30, 2016, 09:34:50 AM »
Quote
...I have a hero 2...

Not what the OP is looking for, but I've found that the Mobius at under $100 is pretty decent for action stuff. I've had one for several years, now, and its 1920x1080 video, though wide angle, is good. And its stills are OK, too. It's very compact and various mounting devices are available for it, or I occasionally carry it in my pocket or wear it on a hat bill.

For a lot of GoPro uses the Mobius does as well, and cheaper, though underwater or poor environments are not its strong points.

For the OP, I'd say one of the "bridge cameras" with a decent zoom range may be what you want -- no need to carry extra lenses, less expensive, but still good pix for most of us. And they're often more compact than DSLRs are, too.
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JerArdra

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #23 on: April 30, 2016, 08:08:01 PM »
If you are interested in a small pocket camera that is easy to carry take a look at the Panasonic DMC-ZS50.  Besides being able to do most everything a larger size camera can do it has the following.  It has both an LCD screen and an optical view finder so whenever you move the camera up to your eye the camera turns off the LCD screen and it turns on the optical viewfinder so you can see the same image that you saw on the LCD screen.

Here is something I previously posted about this camera.

http://www.rvforum.net/SMF_forum/index.php/topic,80922.msg733136.html#msg733136

JerryF
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 08:14:26 PM by JerArdra »
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Jim Fitz

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #24 on: April 30, 2016, 10:31:39 PM »
Thanks everyone for your inputs.  IDK what I will get, but will give the kids lots of food for thought for a birthday present for old dad.
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Sandhill Guy

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #25 on: May 01, 2016, 10:11:59 AM »
I have several Nikon DSLR cameras and recently found a great deal on an entry level Nikon DSLR. It is the Nikon D3300 kit from Adorarama Camera. The unit is refurbished and has a 90 day warranty. The camera cost $360.00 and I bought one for my daughter for an upcoming trip to Iceland. With an ok kit lens this is a terrific deal on a surprisingly good camera. I would add a 18-200mm lens but thats an additional 700 dollars. Their web site is also a good place to buy used cameras and lens.
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Happycamper843

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #26 on: May 01, 2016, 10:42:52 AM »
I totally agree with the idea of getting a sports camera. They are rugged, can go anywhere and still take amazing photos. There is a line of accessories that allow you to attach the camera to just about anything you wish and get point of view images from any point of view you can imagine.
I have looked at some of your photos and they seem great. That being said is there a particular sport camera that you would recommend?
« Last Edit: May 01, 2016, 11:39:04 AM by Happycamper843 »
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Happycamper843

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #27 on: May 01, 2016, 10:44:27 AM »
My two cents here. I use my cell phone for most of my pictures. I do still keep my Nikon DSLR on hand for special occasions thought.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2016, 11:39:49 AM by Happycamper843 »
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Larry N.

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #28 on: May 01, 2016, 11:36:30 AM »
 
Quote
I would add a 18-200mm lens but thats an additional 700 dollars.

You can get a Tamron 18-200 used from B & H Photo for $149.95 (a reputable, actually very good, photo store). Or, you could get the Tamron 18-270 new from B & H (roughly 29mm to 405mm equiv., about 14 to 1) for $349 (I've used this for several years -- love it!). Sigma is another very good brand of lenses. Both companies provide lenses for all the major camera brands, without paying for the brand.
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MN Blue Skies

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Re: What kind of camera
« Reply #29 on: May 01, 2016, 02:19:35 PM »
I agree that B & H is an excellent company and they have very knowledgeable staff and they also sell refurbished cameras and photography equipment.  In the last six years it's been my experience that B & H always beats the price of their competitors.  Sometimes manufacturers (like Canon) won't allow them to undercut prices.  In those cases B & H usually adds additional equipment or a reward that can be used on other merchandise.  Even if their prices were slightly higher there is something to be said about the company's reliability and the expertise of their staff. 

BTW,  B & H has videos on various products, shooting, and editing techniques.  Right now it looks like they have 46 videos on point and shoot cameras.  Of course you have to bear in mind that the videos are slanted toward that particular product.  Here is a link to the point and shoot videos: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/videos/photography/point-shoot?sort=popular  We aren't point and shoot fans because we are portrait photographers who shoot for print including wall portraits.

If a person is serious about photography and is interested in having their images printed, I would encourage them to look at a DSLR.  I only started shooting 6 years ago so I understand that it can be intimidating but it can be learned.  One of my grandchildren started shooting a Canon 60d when she was seven years old.  She is now 10 and shooting for competition.  (The other 8 grandchildren could care less about photography.)

Back to B & H... Having a photography expert on the other end of the phone is an added bonus for me.  If that expert can't answer my question, he/she always finds someone who can.  Your children might want to give B & H a call to get input on a camera that would fit your needs.  If the purchase doesn't work out B & H is great about returns.  I've called them for something as simple as a media card and they treated my inquiry no different than my call regarding a $2,500 lens.

When's your birthday?  Father's Day is coming right up!
« Last Edit: May 01, 2016, 02:27:57 PM by MN Blue Skies »
A girl called Max, her husband Eric, Princess Kitty, and Molly the Service Dog in training.

2013 Cougar High Country 315 RES ( A 35' 5th Wheel)
"Big Blue" 2012 RAM 3500 Big Horn (Cummins Diesel 1 ton)

 

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