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#118681 - 07/23/09 11:56 PM Looking for a new camera
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
I'm thinking of getting a new digi cam--something closer to a pocket size than a dslr but more capable than a point & shoot. I've always favored Canons--like their interface. Currently have the A700. I got it for the AA batteries, ability to do manual adjustments, pretty good zoom. What I don't like is its mediocre low-light ability and no image stabilization.

I don't see any current Canons that grab me, and low-light still seems to be a problem. I will use this on the trail and at home. I got interested in the Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS1 or 3 but they don't seem to allow any manual adjustments.

Any suggestions from the camera gurus?

Thanks

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#118691 - 07/24/09 11:10 AM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Hi Tom. The killer trio of backpacking compacts are the G10, LX3 and GX200. All give complete user control and RAW output, and perform well in tests. If you're a bit more daring, the DP1&2 offer a big step up in image quality, but are a bit...quirky to use.

Cheers,
_________________________
--Rick

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#118694 - 07/24/09 01:23 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: Rick_D]
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
Thanks Rick. I just checked out the review of the DP1...interesting.

But I'll hang with your other recommendations. I hadn't looked at the Ricoh before. Do you have a preference between the 3? Real-world pros/cons? Right now, I'm favoring the G10--per my usual prejudice--but have looked the LX3 over too. These are all right at my price limit but doable.

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#118706 - 07/24/09 10:04 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Hi Tom,

I voted with my wallet for the LX3, and am largely pleased with it after half a year. Because I value wide angle over telephoto, it and the GX200 had an edge in my considerations, that and the the fact the G10 is quite bulky in comparison. At the time I bought, the GX was quite a bit more expensive than the LX3 but it's less expensive now and has the very tempting accessory electronic viewfinder. The LX3's biggest shortcoming is any sort of viewfinder, other than an accessory optical one.

I popped a test image in the favorite photos gallery. File size is too small to tell much but the camera's wide angle lens and low-light capabilities are on display.

I'll note that a lot of the LX3 manual controls are accessed via a small joystick, which isn't as easy as the G10 dials. Part of the price of miniaturization.

Cheers,
_________________________
--Rick

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#118708 - 07/24/09 11:15 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: Rick_D]
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
Nice photo, Rick. A challenge with the bright fire in the foreground.

I admit that after reading all I could about these cameras this evening, I was leaning toward the LX3 because of the G10's weight and size. I am a lightweight backpacker after all!

What would I need to do to add a polarized or UV filter on the LX3? Recommendations (if there are choices)?

Thanks again. BTW, am I remembering correctly that way back you had one of the early Canon G's?

Tom

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#118780 - 07/27/09 07:53 AM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
kbennett Offline
member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 820
Loc: north carolina
Of the three, I would buy the G-10 for its manual controls. It has an old fashioned dial for ISO setting, and another dial for exposure compensation. Easy and fast. These are two of the most often changed settings, and most compact cameras bury them in menus. The G10 also has an optical viewfinder. It's not perfect, but it's not too bad. (I own the G-7, and its optical finder is pretty bad.) Finally, it's a pretty quick camera to use. It just feels "snappy."

The only downside, besides the size and weight, is the small sensor. It's good up to ISO 400, not so good after that. But the image stabilized lens makes it possible to shoot fairly long shutter speeds and maintain sharpness. (This doesn't help when the subject is moving, of course.) The zoom range from 28mm-135mm (equivalent) is fine for general use.

I've been generally happy with my G-7 as a backpacking camera, and I think the G-10 would be a great choice.


Edited by kbennett (07/27/09 07:54 AM)
_________________________
--Ken B

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#118784 - 07/27/09 12:53 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Hi Tom,

To use filters (or the WA converter) requires the optional threaded adapter, which also acts as a sort of lens shade. The adapter itself isn't expensive, IIRC it's around twenty bucks. I don't think a circular polarizer is required since there's no contrast-detection AF or split beam metering.

I've never had a Canon G but do have the "real" G camera—the Contax G2 rangefinder system. I'm hoping the µ4/3 format eventually produces a G2 equivalent; then I'll be a truly happy man smile My standard for backpacking cameras remains the Contax T3. I guess its closest digital equivalent is the Sigma DP1.

I really strayed off topic, didn't I?

I've assembled some LX3 shots here, ranging from the first day I had it to my last backpacking trip.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/skeeterbytes/sets/72157611501359745/

Cheers,

Originally Posted By TomK
Nice photo, Rick. A challenge with the bright fire in the foreground.

I admit that after reading all I could about these cameras this evening, I was leaning toward the LX3 because of the G10's weight and size. I am a lightweight backpacker after all!

What would I need to do to add a polarized or UV filter on the LX3? Recommendations (if there are choices)?

Thanks again. BTW, am I remembering correctly that way back you had one of the early Canon G's?

Tom
_________________________
--Rick

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#118791 - 07/27/09 02:33 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: kbennett]
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
I do like the hand controls a lot. The viewfinder I don't care too much about--I always want to see what my settings are doing in the screen. The image stabilization is a big deal, but they all have that.

Every time I convince myself to get the G10, I remember that it is heavier and bulkier. I got a chance to handle it the other day, and it is a bit of a brick.

Still considering it though!

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#118792 - 07/27/09 02:37 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
Pertinent to your earlier statement about voting with your wallet, the LX3 has suddenly gone up in price at all the online places, over msrp. I think this is a result of a recent Wall Street Journal article stating that it was a steal compared to the identical Leica version.

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#118795 - 07/27/09 04:29 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Yup, before Christmas there were boatloads of them and they and the G10 were available for $400. Since the new year supplies have been spotty and prices have been all over the map. For whatever reason, silver is often considerably cheaper than black. I don't think Panny understood they had a runaway hit on their hands and have never corrected the supply issue.

I've not seen the WSJ article, but it's true that the LX3 and DLux4 are identical other than the red dot, missing grip, software, and warranty length.

re. Your earlier comment, I've used the LX3 and G10 side by side (a friend owns the Canon) and they're really different critters. If the lens differences aren't the compelling reason to decide on one or the other, size and ergonomics should do the trick.

Originally Posted By TomK
Pertinent to your earlier statement about voting with your wallet, the LX3 has suddenly gone up in price at all the online places, over msrp. I think this is a result of a recent Wall Street Journal article stating that it was a steal compared to the identical Leica version.
_________________________
--Rick

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#119578 - 08/19/09 06:33 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: Rick_D]
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
Well, supply decided it: I bought a G10. No LX3 to be had, except at low-supply high-markup prices. So with the G10 I've got both a new camera and a potential weapon against advancing bears :-) Damn, it's a brick, but I like the knobs and ease of changing ISO and other exposure settings. Love the image stabilizing.

Tom

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#119581 - 08/19/09 07:52 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
Rick_D Offline
member

Registered: 01/06/02
Posts: 2802
Loc: NorCal
Congratulations Tom, enjoy your new camera. They're beautifully made and yield good results.

Ironic you should post this on the very day Canon announces the G11 cool

Cheers,
_________________________
--Rick

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#119585 - 08/19/09 09:28 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: kbennett]
TomK Offline
member

Registered: 01/07/02
Posts: 467
Loc: Virginia, USA
And thanks for your recommendation, kbennet. It's always good to know when someone else is out there using one of the G's.

Tom

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#119593 - 08/20/09 07:09 AM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
scottyb Offline
member

Registered: 05/28/08
Posts: 278
Loc: Texas Hill Country
Here is a photo taken with a G9. The guy in the background is using a G2.



There are more at G9 Gallery
_________________________
Just because you don't take an interest in politics doesn't mean politics won't take an interest in you.... Pericles (430 B.C)

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#119624 - 08/20/09 07:34 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: TomK]
kbennett Offline
member

Registered: 10/27/03
Posts: 820
Loc: north carolina
Originally Posted By TomK
And thanks for your recommendation, kbennet. It's always good to know when someone else is out there using one of the G's.


Any time.

I have occasionally carried a lighter camera, and every time I have been disappointed in the results.

Have fun with your G10.
_________________________
--Ken B

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#121662 - 09/29/09 10:24 PM Re: Looking for a new camera [Re: kbennett]
hatidua Offline
member

Registered: 09/28/09
Posts: 27
Loc: Colorado
I had the G7 and upgraded to the G10 for the wider lens. I've been pretty happy with it but suspect the noise will be better with the newly announced G11.

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