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Maine-iac

Cameras

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So the other day my friend was filming me while skiing, and he crashed and my camera is no more. I was using a Sony Cybershot (2004?) 5.1MPEGs. What do people recommend for a new camera? My budget is anything under $300. Do people like the waterproof/crush proof Olympus cameras, anybody using a new cybershot??

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I'm using the Olympus 770SW. I've dropped it a number of times on rock and snow, taken pics while it's coated in ice, in the rain and sleet, at 4 F, and it's worked good. Haven't tried underwater yet.

 

Aside from that, the zoom range is limited, the auto-iso is fuzzy at times, it gets confused and won't lock the focus or flash for as long as 5 seconds or so (so if you try to catch your leader mid-fall good luck, but it will lock on him once he lands, in case you need evidence of where you left the body).

 

The pics are good enough for 8x10 and I have made a montage I blew up to 16x24 and it looks good enough.

 

Sometimes I'll take a Canon XTi, but I don't think that's what you're looking for here.

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Olympus 770sw is a sweet camera, I have one and I second Crmlla2007's post. As far as durability, well I dropped it down an 80 ft waterfall-and by some grace of divine intervention it works fine and only has two little scratches on the side. It's shock, freeze, crush, and water proof. I took it to baker and got some sweet shots.

 

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If you are serious about photography, nothing beats a digital slr. I lead up to 10a rock with mine. It's a pain to carry, but *so* worth the quality pictures. You get to have the fun, then more fun sharing photos with your friends afterwards.

Rangerfinders are so disappointing as far as dependable focus. They get it sometimes, but often they don't, especially in the complex rock climbing environment with cliffs above and below the climber.

 

the current cannon xti is over 800, but if you look around you can find older models like the xt, still brand new from big name retailers like circuit city or amazon for under $500. Used on craigslist would be even lower. You can easily test them before you buy...take a picture, view it on laptop. I shoot with a 2 year old xt, you can see my pictures in my trip reports. The cheap lens the camera comes with is just fine.

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If you are looking for a P+S check out the Canon line, they've some great models. Check out the A series.

 

dSLRs can indeed take great pictures. I love taking pictures with mine, I just don't like lugging it around, so I bought a Canon G9 which can produce excellent pics at a fraction of the price ($450) size and weight of a dSLR.

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Scurlock shoots with an XTi. 'Nough said, huh?

 

I would love to use a G9, but it feels all wrong in my hand. Better than the G5 ever did, but my clumsy broken hands still find the G9 a bit hard to use in the store. Hugh, how big are your hands? Sausage fingers of tradmaster? Did you think it would be a problem in the store?

 

Here's Lou Dawson's review of two canon P + S's from the perspective of a glove wearer.

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hmm, I guess average hands? It's definitely more brick like and less contoured than many newer cameras. Having all of the major controls (aperture, shutter, ISO) easily accessible on the outside of the camera rocks though. I didn't really get to play with it in the store the Glazers rep wouldn't give me the time of day (at the Leica or Hasselblad side of the store someone will practically hump your leg)

 

 

If you are worried about the camera being waterproof you can purchase a housings for the canon P+S for between $100-$150 depending on the model

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I use a Canon Powershot with heavy gloves a lot. If you have trouble working the on/off button, which is flush to the casing, just use the little plastic thing on the end of the camera tether; no problem. Great camera. Works like a champ in really cold conditions.

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Another thumbs up for Canon here. I have an older powershot G2 and a new A720is. I got the new one because the G2 is just so big and bulky I never pulled it out. It also has tons of manual settings I never use.

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The Olympus 770SW is a nice camera. It wish it took AAAs though. It takes good underwater pics but getting the water off the lens can be a pain due to how far recessed it is. I always carry a lens cloth, which helps. I've smashed it against the rock and dropped it several times and it still takes pics. The front is pretty scarred up and gouged though. These pics were dummied down for the web bit I attached one hres link so you can get an idea what it will do. With a better photographer I'm sure they'd be much nicer shots.

 

EnchantmentsTraverse_003.jpg

EnchantmentsTraverse_048.jpg

High Res version of above picture.

 

Seattle1_010.jpg

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Thanks Spotly for those pictures. Its nice to see what a camera will actually do with a picture. Just curious, but where are the top two pictures taken? Currently i am looking at a Sony Cybershot DSC 90 or 120, an Olympus Stylus 790SW, and i will have a look at some of the Cannon P+S's.

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The top one is from the end of Colchuck lake and the other one is of Leprechaun Lake in the Enchantments. A friend and I did the traverse through there last Fall. If you're interested in seeing more pics from that area, I've got a TR posted here.. Some of the images have the hires versions to look at.

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Another vote for the Canon digital SLR's. I've packed my Rebel XT through the Cascades and Olympics many times. It’s fairly light for an SLR. The size is a pain, but I picked up a pretty cool camera bag for it made by TNF. This allows for a multitude of attachment options whether it's worn on your chest, pack belt, or harness. Highly recommend this bag for you SLR addicts. What the link doesn't mention is that there is also some sewn webbing on the back of the case creating a few loops for other attachment options. This IS the climbers camera bag.

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I have always liked the photos Steph Abegg has taken on the Trip Reports she has posted here. Looks like she is using a Canon as well, though it is the next step up from the XT/XTi:

 

http://sabegg.googlepages.com/personalprofile

 

Check out some of the photos she has taken. She has also done some pretty amazing trips.

 

 

I have an XTi, and have found that you can take much better pictures with better glass...the lense you use can make a huge difference. Then again, if you use technique and have some photo processing software you can take amazing pictures with a point and shoot as Gary Yngve (why he has not weighed in yet I'm not sure) has:

 

http://www.cs.washington.edu/homes/gyngve/photos.html

 

I believe he has taken most of his photos with a little Canon point and shoot.

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I'm thinking for size and shape,one of the Casio Z cameras.

I had a Z-120 and it was awesome pocket camera with a great zoom and did video pretty well.Some of the other cameras mentioned are probably much better in some ways but for a point and shoot,stick in your pocket and go and traveling lite this is the way I would go.More in line with your Sony Cybershot style.I have a large digital also but don't regularly climb/hike with it.My Casio was ALWAYS with me till someone liked it better than me at a crag.Like just last week.I'll get another Casio this week.

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