“There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs.”
July 27, 2009 10:37 AM   Subscribe

My beloved digital camera just died, and I'm trying to match features. Any suggestions? I don't want it to fit in my pocket.

Well regardless of saying here that I wasn't in the market for a new camera, I am now because my trusty Sony just died. First the LCD screen went, which was not a huge issue, but then the view finder followed, rendering it a paperweight.

The camera I'm replacing is the Song DSC-HI, which had a fabulous zoom, and that's what I'm eager to find again. For example, I spend a good amount of time at sports events in less-than-great seats and I loved the zoom on this to get good pictures. I still have the DSC-S650 which filled in well on this trip, but it's great for snapshots, not action shots where I need a zoom. I've also found the up-close macro is better with the larger lens. I'm the oddball, I don't want a pocket cam. The only reason I have the little Sony was for a wedding.

I would like to keep with SONY so as not to deal with all new memory formats, but I've heard good things about some new model Canons. I love the manual options on the H1 as well as the scenes, and the large-ish LCD screen. I also love that it used AA batteries, which made things easy if I'm caught without batteries. I don't think I need or want a DSLR despite lens capabilities, because when I travel I don't want that much stuff to juggle and don't take photos as often as I used to to warrant that investment. My previous camera before the Sony was a Nikon-forget the Coolpix model but it was another with a good zoom. It died in the Australian sand and heat. Both lasted me 3+ years and owe me nothing, but I like the bigger models - I feel I can take a better picture with them.

I'm familiar with DPReview and some of the other sites, but I'm also curious for personal experience - what models have you found that do the trick. Which would you avoid? Any specific review sites I should make sure to check out? I'm in NYC so I'll certainly be making a trip to B&H to play with the models as I can't buy it on specs alone, but am not sure where to start as I haven't been camera shopping in some time.

As I said, I have a backup camera so this isn't an immediate purchase. I'm willing to save up for a good camera so there's no set budget. As always, thanks all!
posted by TravellingCari to Technology (6 answers total)
Just got a Canon SX10 IS that I'm superhappy with (20x optical zoom = 28-560mm equivalent, plus 4x digital zoom that works surprisingly well; AA batteries and standard SD/SDHC etc cards, good monitor, plenty of control if you want it), but I assume the corresponding Nikon is equally good.
posted by effbot at 11:03 AM on July 27, 2009

Earlier version of the above, so slightly less featureful, but slightly cheaper, and one that I'm very happy with, is the Canon S5 IS. 12x optical zoom, AA batteries, and SD/SDHC cards. Lots of manual settings and scenes.

Only down side really is indoor/low light performance. On-board flash does the job, but looks like on-board flash.
posted by Lafe at 11:12 AM on July 27, 2009

Response by poster: ETA: just found this, which was similar but due to age and changes in technology, updates are still good.

Thanks effbot and Lafe, looking into those.
posted by TravellingCari at 2:08 PM on July 27, 2009

I have a Panasonic Lumix that I love that has a huge zoom, etc. I've had it for a few years now and aside from dropping it and getting some condensation in the screen where it broke the thing still works like a dream. This is what I'm talking about. The Lumixs seem to do well in reviews (from what I've seen)...Leica glass and all that. This link might work better.
posted by fieldtrip at 8:02 PM on July 27, 2009

Response by poster: Not that anyone is likely to still be looking at this, but in the event someone finds the thread, I went with the Canon SX20IS which went on major special around Black Friday.
posted by TravellingCari at 11:19 AM on December 1, 2009

Well, some of us check "recent activity" from time to time.

SX20 IS is an improved version of the SX10 IS I mentioned above, so I see no reason why you should be as happy with your purchase as I've been with mine :)
posted by effbot at 7:44 PM on December 1, 2009

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