Saturday, July 5, 2008

Digital Cameras

I am on the hunt for a new digital camera.

My old one, an HP 4 MP that I bought on sale for $150 (inc. shipping), recently suffered a fall, which broke the lens on it. Surprisingly, the crack on the lens does not extend to the shutter area, so it still takes pictures like before! This thing has been a workhorse since I bought it in 2005. I think it's time to give it a rest, and send it off somewhere to an e-waste recycler (this isn't, after all, like an old cell phone that battered women or children could use even after I think it's too old for me....and it takes a lot for me to think electronics are too old for me. My laptop, after a very nice wipe-and-reinstall-of-Windows by my friend Igor, has to be at least 5 years old - it was a hand-me-down from a distant family member who always has to have state of the art toys).

But, I digress.

So, here is my list of criteria for my new camera:

- point & shoot (I love fancy cameras with lenses and stuff, but I am generally happy with the quality of my amateur shots)
- small, can slip into my purse or large pocket easily
- recharges relatively quickly, battery is easily replaceable (unlike an iPod)
- quick start-up when you turn on the camera (i.e. it is ready for action and your subjects haven't run away or grown bored)
-has a slot for a micro-SD card (I have a 1 GB card in my current camera; would be nice to re-use it...or I suppose I could sell it on the cheap)
- $200 or less

I am going to look up digital camera reviews. What has spurred me on is that I will be going to my friends' Olivia & John's wedding at the end of the month, and it would be nice to have something by then.

Anyone have any suggestions? Please comment on here, or send me an email if you know me that well. ;)


I think I decided on a camera. Daniel and I hit up the NEX and the Best Buy over on his side yesterday. I found a salesman at Best Buy who actually knew what he was talking about. I was doing fine with the various website reviews, except that they don't allow for certain search parameters (like "price"). I also wish I could export the search results into Excel so I could filter out results and do a more efficient culling of options. (Wow, I really am an engineer, eh?)

Anyway, I told the salesman that I like to take the camera with me outside, so he suggested Olympus, as most of their cameras are weatherproof and water-resistant. I think the Olympus Stylus 840 8 MP digital camera is a nice compromise between features and price. 8 MP, 5x optical zoom, various flash settings and shooting modes, image stabilization, and more. Best Buy had it priced at $230, but with a quick search online, so far my best deal has been at (see link above). $170 with free 3-day shipping on certain colors (I don't understand why certain colors of electronics are now priced differently...I can't imagine why that affects any performance on their part... it's probably to make idiots who feel they "identify" with a certain color pay more for the exact same product.)

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