Compact / Ultra-Compact 5 MP digital camera that takes good action shots?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Compact / Ultra-Compact 5 MP digital camera that takes good action shots?

    I've decided to retire my antiquated 1 MP beast, and go for something a little more powerful and compact. I'm looking to keep it under $300 - as close to $200 as possible.

    Seems like the more compact the camera, the more slower the autofocus works. It would be nice to be able to catch some shots when I go for rides, in any case.

    Some of the cameras I'm looking at:

    - Canon a540 / a530 / a610 / sd450
    - Nikon Coolpix s1 / s2 / 5600 / 5900

    Any suggestions or recommendations are appreciated!

    Thanks,

    Mike

  2. #2
    Its got what plants crave
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    I have an SD450. It seems very lightweight but still somewhat rugged. I'm no camera guru.. just a point and shoot guy. Seems to work well for me, although the focus isn't instantaneous, that's for sure.

  3. #3
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    a few thoughts...

    you knew about this site on the bottom of this page, right?http://www.pcphotoreview.com/

    Mfrs release waves of cameras and models in at least 2 months shelf-life onslaught. It's impossible to keep up.

    Make a list of your needs and try to narrow it down a bit.

    Recognize that digital cams delay the shot, so fast shots of moving objects (like bikers) are hard to shoot except in bright sunlight. In a forest, forget it. Unless you get a big bulky newfangled one at $1000 +++.

    I can't help you, my state of the art expensive cam is now 2 years old and hopelessly outdated.

    Good luck, Jim

  4. #4
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    Look at the Panasonic Lumix line......it has Optical Image Stabilization and also comes with a Leica lens, the best in the world.
    "Nothing will benefit human health and increase chances of survival for life on earth as much as the evolution to a vegetarian diet." -Albert Einstein

  5. #5
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    My friend's Olympus takes nice action shots, and it's water resistent. I have a Coolpix camera, and the lag time after pressing the button is pretty bad. Sony cameras tend to take really nice shots too, from what I've seen.

    Good luck.

  6. #6
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    Nikon Coolpix has a sport setting documented to have no focus lag (although I haven't tested mine with action shots yet).

    I just bought my brother a 4MP Coolpix for $139 + shipping Compu-Plus in NY. I have the same and it takes great pictures.

    - ray

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by brianthebiker
    Look at the Panasonic Lumix line......it has Optical Image Stabilization and also comes with a Leica lens, the best in the world.
    yeah, I agree with that!
    For a compromise btw one with a 10-12x zoom (makes it a much larger camera) vs a 3x zoom, we picked up a panasonic DMC-LZ2 recently.
    6x zoom, 5MP, image stabilization all in a decent package. Of course, I'm coming from an old olympus 2MP ultra zoom model, so not much of a comparison. We picked it up for under $200 online... plus another ~$50 for a fast 512MB card + reader, which gives something like 130 pics at highest quality.

    I like it, quick startup & minimal shutter lag and I like that it takes standard batteries and a SD card, so nothing proprietary.
    My only gripe is the battery life, but I should pony up for some new AA rechargeables, they are obviously getting to the end of their life.

    PS- take JimC's advice and check out reviews of ones you're interested in online, THEN go handle a few of them at the store. Some of the 'ultra-compacts' are waay too small for normal people to operate easily, then think about throwing bike gloves on and trying it.


  8. #8
    Formerly DMR For Life
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    i don't have a lot of experience with my parents coolpix 5600...it's small enough to be handy but large enough that someone with fairly large mitts (hands that is) can handle it...the auto focus is fairly quick...but not overly fast

    DMR

  9. #9
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    I'm a Canon fan (I have an SD500), but for your purposes and price range I'd take a look at a Fuji F10. I believe it has a continous focus mode, and it does better in low-light conditions than any other compact. This means you can stop action better, even in the shade.

  10. #10
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    Lots to choose from. A good review site is http://www.dpreview.com/ Another is http://www.steves-digicams.com/
    Shutter lag can be a problem for action shots and you should pay attention to the reviews describing this feature. Also look for cameras with a burst mode. This takes several pictures in a row and makes it fairly easy to get a good action shot. Different cameras use different techniques for burst shots so pay attention to this too. A good flash is important in low light shots. Image stabilization is another nice feature but some do a better job than others and there can be some drawbacks. Pay attention to this in the reviews, too.

  11. #11
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    damn it ray

    that's the ONE setting my 4300 doesn't have. Argh! Jim

    I've tried everything to speed it up in a gloomy rainforest....to no avail.


    Shooting modes

    [AUTO], [SCENE] (Portrait, Party/Indoor, Night Portrait, Beach/Snow, Landscape, Sunset, Night Landscape, Museum, Fireworks Show, Close Up, Copy and Back Light), [MANUAL] (includes shooting menu for control of White Balance, Metering, Continuous, Best-Shot Selector, Image Adjustment, Image Sharpening, Lens, Image Size & Quality, Sensitivity, Exposure Options, Focus Options, Auto Bracketing, Noise Reduction and CF Card Format), [Movie]

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