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Camera Recommendations
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David Williams

Locale: Stephens City, VA
Camera Recommendations on 11/05/2013 09:57:19 MST Print View

OK BPL brain trust. I'd like to hear some recommendations concerning a decent compact camera to carry. Would prefer it be small enough to fit in a waist belt pocket, but this is the one area where I am not necessarily limited by size and weight (within reason) as I really don't want to lug around a full body DSLR either. But, want something that will do the scenery I'm immersed in, some justice.

Any recommendations for a camera that is capable of capturing great outdoor scenes? Wide angle lens would be a plus as would some level of low light ability. Doesn't need to be the "rugged" types either. Preferably less than $400.

Thomas Getty

Locale: South Bay
Re: small camera on 11/05/2013 11:50:10 MST Print View

I purchased a refurb Nikon COOLPIX AW100 this past summer for about $160 and have been super pleased with it. It fits perfectly into the waist belt pocket of my Gregory Z55 pack. The camera includes GPS and water/shock resistance which is why I selected it (although I disable the GPS to save battery lift). It's my understanding there was a slight issue with the rubber gasket around the battery cover which is why many of the units were refurb.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Olympus TG-2 on 11/05/2013 12:29:04 MST Print View

I have an Olympus TG-1 waterproof (to 30 ft.) and shockproof camera is about the best of this type out there. It takes a 32 GB SD card and can shoot pretty good video as well.

Plus it can accept aditional lenses (non-waterproof) such as a fisheye, filters and a telephoto lens by removing a ring around the sealed lens.

This camera is a truly low light camera and it takes better pictures than any other point-and-shoot camera I've used. The several options for "art" effects are nice but I seldom use them. But optional settings for bright backgrounds such as white sand or snow really help.

The newer TG-2 is essentially the same camera with an increased depth maximum of 60 ft. Both cameras have an audible alarm when approaching their max depth

P.S. If you know of a military friend about to go in harm's way this is a great "soldier-proof" camera for a gift.

Edited by Danepacker on 11/11/2013 19:39:28 MST.

Diane Pinkers
(dipink) - MLife

Locale: Western Washington
Canon Powershot 260 on 11/05/2013 14:42:18 MST Print View

If you like using zoom, I cannot say enough good things about this camera:

I received it last year for Christmas, and it has been super fun taking photos with it this last year. I am not a shutterbug at all, but I like to take decent photos when I want it. Has macro for wildflowers, and the zoom is AMAZING. Don't know what you consider to be appropriate for weight, but at 8 ounces while this one was twice as heavy as my old Olympus camera, it has more than made up for the ease of use. The only thing I'm a little unhappy with is the battery life, it could be better. I just make sure I pack a few spare rechargeables, and I keep the GPS turned off to save battery life.

Elliott Wolin
(ewolin) - MLife

Locale: Hampton Roads, Virginia
RE: Camera Recommendations on 11/05/2013 19:33:46 MST Print View

Although you mentioned less than $400, for not too much more you can get the very highly rated Sony RX-100. Zeiss lens, excellent quality photographs, about 8 oz. I too want something better than a cheap point-and-shoot but don't want to lug around an SLR, and the RX-100 fits the bill perfectly.

Edited by ewolin on 11/06/2013 11:25:49 MST.

David Williams

Locale: Stephens City, VA
Great input on 11/06/2013 03:01:58 MST Print View

All great suggestions and I've looked at each of these. Thanks guys! If anyone else wants to chime in, feel free.