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Posted: 3/10/2010 3:37:10 AM EDT
Looking for the most bang for my buck.

Important features should include -

  • Decent low light performance
  • Fast follow up shot (no lag between shots being ideal)
  • Decent picture AND video quality
  • Under (or near) $400
So how about it ARFCom shutterbugs....lend my your camera savvy.
Link Posted: 3/10/2010 4:15:52 AM EDT
Good DSLR $350 shipped...

http://www.adorama.com/IOME520KR.html?searchinfo=e520#Olympus-E-520-10.0-Megapixel-Digital-SLR-Camera-Body-with-14-42mm-Lens––-Refurbished-by-Olympus-U.S.A.
Link Posted: 3/10/2010 4:33:37 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/10/2010 4:41:13 AM EDT by swoop411]
Originally Posted By Bill247:
Looking for the most bang for my buck.

Important features should include -

  • Decent low light performance
  • Fast follow up shot (no lag between shots being ideal)
  • Decent picture AND video quality
  • Under (or near) $400
So how about it ARFCom shutterbugs....lend my your camera savvy.



I read this and thought it was immediately impossible, unless we are talking about stolen camera gear. The majority of point-and-shoot style cameras are going to fall into the sub $400 dollar category, and with a point-and-shoot you are going to lose just about every prerequisite you mentioned except the dollar amount.

Save your money and purchase a Canon D7. It shoots high definition video, has excellent photo quality, and since it is a DSLR you can purchase a variety of lenses to suit your purposes. If you cannot wait and save the coin to spend on a D7 or similar then I am not sure what direction to point you in to be honest. Maybe your definition of decent and my definition of decent are too dissimilar.

The zoom on point-and-shoot cameras is digital, meaning it crops the image and results in poor quality. That also continues on to the video functions as well. Years ago I had a Nikon CoolPix that had video and photo options, also falling into the sub-400 category. The video on it sucked to be blunt. You could squeeze decent photos out of the camera, but it required tweaking in the custom user functions that will likely not make sense if you have not worked with manual settings before.

Shooting in low light without terribly grainy photos requires a good CMOS sensor. Just because it has 11,000 mp and can go up to 10,000 ISO does not mean the image will be decent. Point-and-shoot style cameras struggle in this arena, as they are intended to fulfill too many roles in order to satisfy the most users for the least amount of money.

For strictly photo purposes, the Sony Alpha is not terrible by any means. Image stabilization is in the body, not the lenses, which is a con in some people's opinions. Then there is the Flip camera that shoots in HD. They are around 175 dollars, plug directly into your USB port, and overall size is amazing. Big bang for your buck in my opinion. The Sony Alpha I found for $375 on a quick Amazon search and that includes a lens.

If I were on a budget, and wanted to spend absolutely as little as possible yet getting the most bang for my buck I would get the Flip camera, a tripod, and call it a day. You can extract a frame of HD video and use that as a photo which would be excellent quality considering it came from a High Definition source. So for around 200 dollars you get amazing video and photos. If you are interested I could explain this in more detail, and truly break it down into something simple to understand.

Being a Combat Photographer means I have people asking me camera questions almost daily. Photography, and video for that matter, are confusing for people who are not immersed in it. There are exceptions, such as hobbyists who take the time to learn.
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