Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Picture Pages, Pictures Pages...

The old Cosby morning kid's show has little to do with my post, but it popped into my mind looking at the blank 'title' line and knowing I wanted to ask my bloggy and FB friends about cameras! :-D

There- Tuesday morning trip down memory lane!

So, I have questions about cameras. I have thought for a while now I need to step up from a point-and shoot to an SLR camera. Though in my search at various stores, I've found some point-and-shoot cameras in the $175-$250 range with functions similar to those found on SLRs, such as adjustable ISO- the white balance to brighten a dark shot w/o flash, and lens size/zoom similar to the lens that comes with several SLR cameras. I currently have an HP Photosmart point-n-shoot 8 megapixel, 6x optical zoom (8-48 mm lens) which has been a kick-butt camera! It has taken thousands of pics over the past few years! The problem? I fear it is dying a slow death. For some reason either the image stabilizer w/o flash OR the focus w/o flash has not been working for months. Outside pics or pics in bright light are fine. Pics with flash are fine. If I'm in a dim area and can't use a flash- I be screwed! For example- auditorium where flash is not permitted, such as dance rehearsal, forget it. If I shut the flash off I get blurry pics- it just won't focus. So I end up taking a dark pic, fussing with exposure and lightening options later on the computer (ends up washed out or grainy) OR end up with a fuzzy pic, not worth editing. I assume being dropped a couple times, slammed around in my truck and bags traveling and being sat on a few times has NOT helped this poor camera.

I have been to a few stores trying out various cameras, also online reading reviews, and I believe I have slightly narrowed down to these choices: a Canon 10.1 mp EOS Rebel XS (slr) or comparable Nikon (slr), Canon 12 mp Power Shot, a Nikon 10 mp 15x zoom Coolpix L100, or Kodak Easyshare 10 mp 12x zoom. Comparatively, the Canon and Nikon SLRs have similar features, though the Nikon is cheaper but felt the Nikon had more confusing controls and didn't feel as sturdy.

So I'm in the battle of: Do I want a more compact camera I can slip in my purse easily? Would the additional features/adjustments of the SLRs be enough use to me that would offset the higher price?? Do the higher-end point-and-shoot Kodak or Nikon with adjustment features of SLR w/o removable lenses, but higher cost than compacts be enough?? I would like to have a little more megapixel and a bit more zoom, but I don't necessarily need a separate zoom lens (yet, ha!). I would like to stick with regular battery sizes, AAs in the Nikon versus recharging camera battery of the Canon. Price is a factor, I'm always out for a deal, but maybe it's time to bite the bullet and just go for a larger, better camera? Not that I have $400 or $500 right now to buy a camera anyway! Now I have written this, I need to go back and handle the Nikon Coolpix and Kodak Easyshare, both 10 mgp and more than double zoom what I have now. Both less than half the cost of the Canon EOS Rebel. Decisions, decisions. You should have seen my trying to decide on a new vacuum last year!

As a side note, I love Pioneer Woman's blog and she is an awesome self-taught photographer! Her ranch pics rock! If you haven't read her blog, click her name link above and get acquainted! I want to go live with P-Dub!! Back to topic: She likes the Nikon D70 and D80. She takes awesome pics with that thing! For kicks I might check the price on an older or refurb D70/80 but the D90 is $1100+ on Amazon- WAAAAYYYY WAY out of my price range! YIKES!

I'm interested in what kinds of cameras y'all have and what you think of them. Do you love it, hate it, put up with it because you have it?? Is it a point-and-shoot, an SLR, what brand/model is it?? I need some more opinions!

Start spewing info...ready, set- GO!

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